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Turntables are back with a vengeance, but time doesn’t stand still. Technology’s pace allows us to revisit problems and solutions of the past with new eyes and new means.

We looked at one of the older and most cherished drive systems – the idler drive – and proceeded to iron out its kinks and foibles with modern technology and materials. The result surprised us and will surprise you.

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Starting with the drive system, motion is supplied by a BLDC motor, epicyclically driving the aluminum platter through an urethane drive wheel. The motor is attached to a telescopic cradle using sorbothane rings for vibration decoupling.


The platter, of medium weight (3.4Kg), is constructed from aluminum with the major mass around its circumference for a greater Moment of Inertia. Its underside is covered in butyl rubber to quell any “ringing”. It rotates on an inverted bearing design, its weight supported by twin ceramic spheres. To top it off, we use a two layer rubber / cork mat, for further isolation.

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Everything ties together at a stainless steel cross-frame, for rigidity and precision. The frame itself attaches onto a MDF and acrylic multi-layered plinth. At the plinth, all other parts -- armboard, enclosure, power and control electronics -- are bolted onto precision located mounting points.

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The inboard power supply, line filters the mains supply before converting it to DC and stabilizing it. It then feeds the motor controller, which features electronic speed switching (33/45), along with quick start and quick stop characteristics.

The correct speed is constantly monitored and accurately maintained thanks to feedback from a 1000-step optical encoder.

At the same time, the right amount of torque provided – i.e. the absolute minimum required at all times – is continually adjusted based on feedback from the current levels required by the motor.

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Complexity is hidden, or rather, function doesn’t dictate form. We strived for a classical, contained appearance, able to subtly fit into any decor and not scream about itself. Alcantara or Leatherette fabric frames the turntable, while the top is covered in brushed aluminum.

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Adapters for mounting any tonearm can be supplied at time of order for no additional charge. Additional adapter boards can be ordered for a modest fee.


Standard Available Colors :

Alcantara – black or anthracite

Leatherette – dark brown or burgundy


Custom Alcantara or Leatherette finishes are available for an additional cost of $110.   A polished brass Logo is optional for $135.



For protection from dust an optional hinged dust cover is available for $500.


Epicyclic drive
BLDC  motor with digital, relaxed closed-loop control system
33 / 45 / 78 rpm capability (78 with pitch control in 0.5% steps)
Twin ceramic inverted bearing design
Chrome-plated, induction hardened 16mm platter shaft
Constrained layer MDF plinth construction
Stainless steel cross-frame chassis
Supports tonearms between 9”-12”
Aluminium + rubber damped platter construction
Height adjustable damped feet (4)
Exterior finished in Alcantara or Leatherette and brushed Aluminum 
Platter Weight: 3.5Kg / 7.7 lbs 

Total Weight : 17Kg / 37.4 lbs
Dimensions (without tonearm and feet):

52(w) x 41(d) x 12(h) cm  /  20.5(w) x 16.1(d) x 4.7(h) in



Although, we don’t believe that numbers are the only game in town, we do measure them, which is not very common today. Wow & Flutter, along with Rumble have been the most common measurements used to evaluate turntables, but we know there’s more to sound than just those two.


In fact, those two can be misleading: W&F is an average, scarcely revealing the magnitude and frequency of the occurring speed drifts. Rumble is also mostly useless, as today, the background noise from the records usually surpasses the noise coming from the motor / bearing.


However, at least for a ballpark / baseline perspective, we do measure them. Below, the plots from a recent W&F test can be seen. We used the Ios PlatterSpeed app along with Dr. Feickert’s 7″ test record and a 40sec sample.


And the test results made us proud !


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What they say ...


Audionirvana / Positive Feedback

Myles B Astor  |  August 2020



The key to the exceptional speed stability of the TE-2 is digital. Paulo employs an off-the-shelf industrial motor controller (although with his own customized software), that allows control over the behavior of the motor in almost imaginable ways. “A motor that generates noise and vibration also wastes energy, so precision industries are keen to eliminate them as keenly as any audiophile.


Thus, attached to the motor is an optical speed/position encoder that generates 1000 pulses for every revolution. The controller uses this information to constantly adjust the motor speed (1000 X per second) to the prescribed value. Contrary to the "rudimentary" electronic controllers of the 80's (think Japanese direct drive players from Technics, Sony, Denon, etc), a modern controller can make adjustments hundreds (at least) of times faster and smarter, allowing the designer to program it to react quickly and aggressively to any speed deviation (a tactic employed in the 80's, thus leading to the bad name of direct drives in many audiophile circles), or it can react more lazily, trying to smooth out the variations”, which is the "tactic" Paulo employs with the TE-2.


This programmability also allows Paulo to specify how much time the platter takes to spin-up to the selected speed and down to a full stop--and of course provides electronic speed selection between 33/45/78 (and even fine pitch adjustment for 78rpm, as the old 78 records are prone to have been recorded with some variation to the exact speed).




The Sound


The first thing I noticed about the TE-2 is how homogenized the VPI sounds by comparison. Looking back, I now view my Scout “Supreme” as a very “nice” sounding table. It had a warm, pleasing sound which one could live with for a very long time--unless of course you happen to hear the TE-2.

By comparison the Sempersonus is MUCH more transparent to the source, providing the listener with a revealing perspective on the recording venue, choice of instruments, musicianship, and vocal styles of the performers laying down the tracks. And yet the TE-2 does this without sounding at all “analytical”, forward, or tonally lean. In fact, what you get with the TE-2 is a slightly more laid back (think row “G”) presentation, but one with much greater inner detail and separation of instrumental lines. Interestingly, this shift in perspective and enhanced inner detail is exactly what happened when I switched to the WyWires/Daedalus speaker cables--just to a less dramatic degree.


For example, I recently played MFSL “Teaser and the Firecat” by Cat Stevens. Listening to “How Can I Tell You” positions Cat and his guitar well behind the front plane of the speakers and yet his strumming and vocal articulation are rendered with extraordinary detail. At various points he restates the last word or phrase of a verse but does so in a sort of spoken word or gentle humming beneath his breath. The TE-2 imparts these vocal embellishments in a way that adds considerably to the emotional intensity of the song.


Similarly, on the opening track (“The Wind”), Cat’s voice is positioned slightly off center, up and well behind the front plane of the speakers and yet the vocal phrasing, tone, and emphasis are incredibly vivid and lifelike. This is the kind of “in the room” sound that we all crave. The same is true for the sound of his guitar, which is conveyed with all the subtle dynamics, tone, and delicacy of the real thing. This “relaxed technicolor” realism is a key feature of this playback system--one which reveals subtle nuances that are the holy grail of two channel audio.


Speaking of tone, the TE-2 is also remarkable in the way it communicates the tonal qualities of acoustic instruments like guitar, cello, and piano. I recently listened to Mozart's “Sonatas d'Eglise” performed by Ensemble London Baroque on original instruments. Like every well-recorded chamber music LP I threw at it, listening to this album on the TE-2 illustrates the unrivalled communicative power of this playback system. The cello, for example, is captured with a resonant warmth that I have never experienced before despite having played this record dozens of times over the years. The instrument sounds so real that it is startling at times, with a woody resonance, absence of smear and overhang that both drive the music forward and provide tonal richness and body to the work. Honestly, listening to recordings like these on the TE-2 leave me feeling as though I have never really heard the cello properly reproduced in my home (or the stand up bass on my jazz recordings for that matter).


The other thing that immediately seizes your attention are the dynamic and transient capabilities of the TE-2. Listening to well-recorded percussion or acoustic guitar provides an in the studio experience like none I’ve ever experienced. For example, on the title track of Shelby Lynne’s “Just a Little Lovin” the drummer combines kick drum and rim shots to create a very compelling rhythmic foundation to the song. On the TE-2 the kick drum is not only incredibly deep and tight, but the rim shots have a transient snap and decay that are without parallel in my listening experience.


Similarly, listening to Michael Hedges “Silent Anticipations” from his debut album “Breakfast in the Field”, I hear periodic and incredibly vivid “whacks” on the soundboard, with a lengthy decay that moves from left to right across the soundstage. On my prior set up, this was merely subtle punctuation, conveyed as homogenized “raps” on the wood body of the guitar. With the TE-2 it is possible to distinguish between the force and location of each percussive blast. This is the kind of thing that happens often with the TE-2, and never fails to leave me giggling and speechless.


The TE-2 also creates the impression that the frequency response of my system increased by 10%, north and south. The system simply goes deeper and is much more extended on top. The bass response is not only deeper, but much tighter--the system moves more air and does so with immense clarity and zero overhang.


The top end is not only more extended, but way faster, nuanced, and more delicate. I’ve been listening to a lot of jazz since installing the TE-2 (“Art Pepper Meets the Rhythm Section”, MOFI’s “Kind of Blue”, Cecile McLorin Salvant “Woman Child”, Cannonball Adderley “Somethin Else”).


While these LPs really demonstrate the transient and dynamic capabilities of the TE-2, they also allow the listener to gain extraordinary insight into the percussive talents that add drive, color and texture to well recorded jazz. These are recordings I know well and love and yet on each I am hearing the snare, cymbal and brush work in ways that are entirely new. With the TE-2 you can hear where and how hard the drummer taps the cymbals as well as the space between rapid taps that previously blurred into a single stroke.


Listening to Art Pepper, at one point “Philly” Joe Jones delivers a sequence of rim shots that are progressively more forceful--until he desists. It is simply amazing how each rap gets louder and projects forward into the soundstage until the last one knocks you back in your chair. While the TE-2 excels in so many key areas, the extended frequency response is impressive and noteworthy. The level of detail and natural accuracy is simply astonishing, and my Daedalus Apollo’s, outfitted with the new ten inch woofer and Eton tweeter, really make the most of what the TE-2 is throwing down.


Another thing I have noticed with the TE-2 is the way it captures subtle gradations in vocal delivery that provide much greater insight into the artistry of Frank Sinatra, Cecile McLorin Salvant, Linda Ronstadt, Harry Belefonte, and other great singers residing in my collection. This is most apparent when a vocalist really “leans in” to the tune, projecting their voice to accentuate a lyric to elevate the emotional intensity of the song. I’ve listened dozens of times to Linda sing “When You Wish Upon a Star” with the Nelson Riddle Orchestra. The opening verse is the song title which is followed by “makes no difference who you are” at which point it seems as though her voice has no limits. The TE-2 is the only table I’ve heard that can keep up with the sheer power of her voice, evidencing zero strain or distortion. Similarly, “What’s New” (MFSL) concludes with the standard “Goodbye”. As she signs off at the end of the tune she holds the final note for what seems like forever. The TE-2 hangs right with her and vividly captures the subtle vibrato she uses to embellish (and sadden) the close of the song.


It is also important to say something about the tonal balance of this playback system, which is very even-handed. Compared to my Scout “Supreme” the tonal balance is more akin to what I was getting with the ART 9 than the MIMC Star. The former was extremely balanced top to bottom whereas the latter had a noticeable, if pleasant, midrange emphasis. What I love about the TE-2 is that it does not editorialize--it is very transparent but never sounds dry or sterile. Reviewers have made much of the midrange richness of the Charisma line of cartridges but I would characterize the Signature One in my setup as decidedly more accurate and neutral than tonally warm. This midrange accuracy allows the listener to easily distinguish between tenor and alto sax, Fender or Rickenbacker, violin or viola. By contrast, my VPI loaded with the MIMC Star now seems considerably colored in retrospect, adding a pleasing but homogenizing glow to every track while slightly rolling off the frequency extremes.


Finally, something about PRaT and the ability of this system to convey separate musical lines as a synergistic whole is in order. The TE-2 does exactly what I had hoped for when I started this journey--leaves me tapping my toes and yearning for the next record with every listening session. This setup has a simply amazing ability to differentiate separate musical lines.


For example, vocal overdubs become really interesting--you can literally hear each take as a separate recorded layer with unique subtle shadings applied by the artist to bring about a cohesive whole. Norah Jones debut LP “Come Away With Me” reissued by Acoustic Sounds and pressed at QRP comes to mind. Whereas on my prior set up Norah’s overdubs sounded like a mashup of voices, now each vocal take is clearly a distinct layer with its own harmonic contribution to the whole. Similarly, listening to Mozart’s “Haydn” string quartets (Quartetto Italiano on Phillps) reveals the exceptional interplay between the four instruments, allowing the listener new appreciation for the composition and musicianship captured in these performances. I could go on and on--the point is that there is a sonic landscape that is created by this system that allows the listener to both isolate and appreciate different elements while at the same time experience a deeply moving artistic whole. Taken together with the aforementioned dynamic contrasts, there is a sense of flow that is so compelling and so lifelike that the music never fails to touch you like a great live performance.



Closing Thoughts

At the end of the day it is impossible to say which component contributes what to the sound I am getting from the TE-2 vinyl playback system. Together, the TE-2/Raven 12/Charisma Signature One/WyWires vinyl playback system represents a dramatic step up from what was a very capable (and not inexpensive) VPI that was at least on par with their $6.5K Prime Signature (sans cartridge). The TE-2 does all this at a reasonable price and in a manageable size that is attractive, easy to set up, and bulletproof to operate. In fact, the TE-2 represents such a capable and thoughtfully engineered platform that I am confident if mated with capable but considerably less expensive partners, like an Origin Live Silver and Charisma MC-2, it would provide similarly outstanding performance that is well within the reach of most budget conscious music lovers.


With the Sempersonus TE-2 Paulo Rebordão has managed to design a table that captures the idler wheel magic while ticking all the audiophile boxes. As a result, the TE-2 is a game changer that deserves the attention of true music lovers who want outstanding performance in a simple, cost-effective package.


Turntable only

$ 6,500


$ 500

Additional Armboard

$ 90

Custom Finishes

$ 110 

Polished Brass Logo

$ 135



Delivery Lead Time

6-8 weeks



TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Sorane 1.2 / 9" Tonearm

Sorane AL-17g Headshell

Sorane TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 9,000

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 8,190 

Check - $ 7,995


TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Sorane TL1-L / 12" Tonearm

Sorane AL-17g Headshell

Sorane TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 9,000

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 8,190 

Check - $ 7,995


TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Funk Firm FX-5 / 9" Tonearm

Funk Firm TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 8,315

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 7,615 

Check - $ 7,435


TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Funk Firm FX-3 / 9" Tonearm

Funk Firm TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 9,765

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 8,990 

Check - $ 8,775


TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Sorane ZA-12 / 12" Tonearm

Sorane TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 9,525

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 8,610 

Check - $ 8,400


TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Funk Firm FX-3 / 12" Tonearm

Funk Firm TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 10,000

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 9,210 

Check - $ 8,990


TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Groovemaster GM 3 Tonearm

Schick Graphite Headshell

Groovemaster TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 10,330

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 9,210 

Check - $ 8,990


TE-2 Turntable

Funk Firm Boing ISO-Feet


Schick TS  9" or 12" Tonearm

Schick Graphite Headshell

Schick TE-2 Armboard

 MSRP  $ 9,450

Bundle Price

Credit Card - $ 8,525 

Check - $ 8,320


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