Mobile Fidelity jumped into the turntable business almost 6 years ago with the very successful launch of its UltraDeck and StudioDeck turntables. Both tables have a unique development history and its great to see another U.S. manufacturer keeping design and production at home. Both tables have been manufactured in Michigan from the opening bell and the range has expanded to cartridges (sourced in Japan), phono preamps, and accessories. It would appear that the lineup has been expanded to make the range more affordable. The new MoFi StudioDeck Foundation turntable is available for $999.00 and eschews a number of features from the more expensive tables that can be added at a later date.
Accuracy has been a Mobile Fidelity hallmark since its inception and is exactly what guides the MoFi StudioDeck Foundation belt-drive turntable, developed to serve as the core for any analog chain and deliver precisely just what the artist captured in the recording studio.
Hand-crafted at an in-house factory in the U.S.A., complete with a MoFi StudioTracker MM phono cartridge, designed in collaboration between Mobile Fidelity engineers and turntable expert/Spiral Groove founder Allen Perkins, and made to accurately present the vast sonic pictures present on vinyl LPs, StudioDeck Foundation permanently changes the expectations of high-end performance previously attainable at its sub-$1k price point.
Ready to go minutes after unboxing, the ultra-sturdy 19.1-pound ‘table comes loaded with advanced technology, user-friendly features, and unflappable design elements to ensure phenomenal analog playback – ultimately bringing the sound of the Mobile Fidelity Sebastopol, California studio into your home. With StudioDeck Foundation, faithful-to-the-source detail, immersive soundstaging, organic warmth, and clarity become part of each listening experience.
Like all Mobile Fidelity products, every piece on StudioDeck Foundation derives from tireless experimentation, meticulous evaluation, and listening tests. All parts and materials are chosen and developed strictly on the basis of their sonic benefits. Mobile Fidelity’s meticulous oversight of every detail begins with a 3.88-pound, 0.75-inch platter comprised of Delrin, a high-strength, low-friction polymer selected because its highly crystalline structure makes for a great impedance match with vinyl and grounds unwanted noise.
Similarly, and acting in concert with cutting-edge dampening matter, the Delrin pulley – which comes with positions for 33 1/3 and 45RPM speeds – keeps motor vibrations away from the platter and stylus. Speaking of the motor: StudioDeck Foundation’s 300RPM isolated AC synchronous type delivers excellent speed stability for stellar pitch accuracy and rhythmic drive.
The sound-first fundamentals extend to the custom-developed Studio tonearm, a 10-inch straight aluminum gimbaled bearing design whose rigidity and tracking prowess translate into accurate information retrieval.
Its adjustable tracking force, VTA, azimuth, and enhanced anti-skate grant you profound options for tweaks and adjustments. And there’s more. A steel and Teflon inverted bearing system provides StudioDeck Foundation smooth, quiet playback stability.
Everything about StudioDeck Foundation, down to its use of ester-based bearing grease for quiet operation, relates to preserving and playing back the actual sound on your LPs. It’s why Mobile Fidelity equips StudioDeck with high-quality gold-plated connectors shielded by a copper foil box to prevent airborne RF noise.
MoFi StudioTracker Cartridge
True to the source, the Japanese-made StudioTracker reproduces what’s in records’ grooves: nothing more, nothing less. Distinguished with an extremely well-balanced frequency response and accurate dynamic swings, StudioTracker delivers a wondrous level of precision. Developed in collaboration between Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab engineers and Spiral Groove founder Allen Perkins, StudioTracker features two powerful low-mass magnets aligned in a “V” formation that parallel the way a record’s grooves are cut by the studio engineers.
StudioTracker’s elliptical stylus allows it to dig deep into record grooves to extract the hidden cues located within, all without adding coloration. A proprietary material is applied inside the specially designed polymer headshell to maximize performance. The exciting result: An entry-level high-end cartridge on par with much more expensive models – and an instrument that achieves wondrous channel separation, detail retrieval, and dynamic responsiveness.
The StudioTracker’s rich sonic character and smooth, highly accurate top end owe to the countless hours invested removing unwanted resonance and employing next-generation dampening elements to improve the sound. The overall design increases the control of the stylus/cantilever and generator, leading to heightened information retrieval and an extremely solidified bottom end.