SERENE UPGRADES

The engineering behind the Sound

Stack Audio’s goal is to enhance music by removing noise from source components. We focus on precision, rigidity and vibration dissipation.

SERENE brings this focus to the LP12, specifically structural parts of the LP12 which are key to get the best out of the tonearm, cartridge and bearing.

Why is precision, rigidity and vibration dissipation so important?

All musical information is picked up as vibrations from the stylus acting in the groove. The bumps and dips in the groove are at a micron level (one millionth of a metre) retrieving every micro detail counts in recreating the musical performance as accurately as possible.

Precise tolerances are required to ensure the geometry of the key components and fixings is as close to perfect as possible, ensuring the connected parts are held in the exactly the right  positions. The rigidity of the components ensures these tolerances are maintained over a lifetime of use.

 

Precision

The LP12 has been around for nearly 50 years, not all LP12s start from the same place when it comes to precision. Ensuring precise and accurate dimensions of key components enable the LP12 to work at its best.

For SERENE, choosing the right materials and shape at the design stage is fundamental. A lot of work also goes into achieving the final critically tight tolerances during manufacture. Rather than machining each part as quickly as possible to maximise efficiency, we choose to run the parts at the optimal speed for quality. Tolerance critical points are inspected to ensure the standard is upheld.

 

Rigidity

Structural rigidity is important to ensure that the connected parts are held in the right position: they must not move or rattle against each other and maintain their tolerances during a lifetime of use.

We drew inspiration from the natural world – hexagonal patterns are prevalent in nature due to their efficiency in providing a perfectly rigid structure. The carefully designed hexagonal cells on all Soprano parts and the Alto sub-chassis and armboards provide extreme rigidity whilst maintaining the crucial centre of gravity and balance the LP12 requires.

Vibration Dissipation

Vibration in turntables is unwanted energy. It comes from room feedback (air-borne and direct) affecting the structure and from internal components such as motors. Managing vibrations in the LP12 involves dissipating that energy as quickly as possible. Poorly applied damping can make the problem worse, ruining timing and losing musicality. Vibration that is damped (in effect, stored) is released later, creating echoes and smearing in the following moments.

To avoid these issues Stack Audio uses ‘shear-related energy dissipation’. AVDC (Advanced Vibration Dissipation Compound) is a thin visco-elastic membrane sandwiched between layers and incorporated into machined hexagonal cells. It isn’t cushioning and does not move or compress. Instead, it maintains the rigidity of the components it is fixed to whilst converting micro vibrations that colour and mask the music signal instantly into low-level heat, avoiding the smearing effects of damping.

 

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