Audio equipment manufacturer Technics got back in the vinyl record turntable game five years ago, and 2020 marked the release of their SL-1500C home listening player. In July 2021 they will offer a more affordable “entry level” option: the SL-100C Direct Drive Turntable.
Like the SL-1500C, the SL-100C does not have the pitch fader found on turntables designed with DJs in mind. Streamlining the device further is an Audio Technica VM95C cartridge, which a news post on the manufacturer’s website says helps deliver “a cost-effective solution without significant compromise.” Meanwhile, Technics hallmarks like the iron-coreless drive motor, two-layer chassis, and S-shaped tonearm remain on the SL-100C.
The Return of Technics
Technics, a Panasonic Corporation subsidiary founded in 1965, was the first audio company to introduce motor-driven (as opposed to belt-driven) turntables with 1969’s SP-10. Two years later they released the SL-1100, a device that inextricably linked the company to disc jockey culture after DJ Kool Herc incorporated them into his first U.S. sound system. The SL-1200, released the following year, raised the bar even higher with upgrades that led to the development of scratching among early hip-hop DJs.
The SL-1200 remained an industry standard for decades to come, but the advent of CDJ players led to Technics discontinuing their line of turntables in 2010. With vinyl record sales picking back up over the past decade, however, the company re-entered the market with the SL-1200G in 2016.
The SL-100C Direct Drive Turntable will retail at £799 when it releases in July. More information is available on the Technics website.