Linn takes flagship Klimax LP12 to greater heights with new cartridge, motor and power supply

Linn Klimax LP12
(Image credit: Linn)

The flagship iteration of Linn's iconic Sondek LP12 turntable has received a smattering of upgrades. The Klimax LP12, which will make its public debut at the Dutch Audio Event, Eindhoven on Saturday 30th October, sports Linn's all-new reference Ekstatik cartridge and Radikal motor design and power supply. It's the latest of over forty upgrades that have blessed the LP12 over its forty-eight-year lifespan.

Linn's quest to develop its best-ever moving coil cartridge in the Ekstatik led it to look further afield to new materials and methods, and the result is the implementation of aluminium-bronze inserts. A custom honeycomb cut into the cartridge body reduces mass to close to 7g, while a micro-ridge stylus on a sapphire cantilever has been chosen for its greater stiffness over boron or aluminium, and consequential ability to deliver less loss between the styles and generator.

Naturally, Linn says the new Ekstatik forms a "harmonious synergy" with the Ekos SE tonearm it's attached to.

Linn Klimax LP12

(Image credit: Linn)

Linn has also improved speed accuracy through enhanced motor control, claiming the LP12 can produce uniform rotation closer to 33 1/3rpm than any other turntable. The British brand says it's "accurate to five times tighter tolerance than its predecessor", courtesy of the improved digitally (FPGA) managed and auto-calibrated motor design which features smaller, lower-noise components in an all-new acoustic housing that decouples the motor from the deck more effectively.

The power supply's new board design also features smaller components and shorter signal paths, supposedly yielding the all-time lowest noise floor in a Sondek LP12, and features quieter power supply rails. Radikal has migrated to a precision reference voltage, served up by a new DAC derived from technology found in Linn’s network streamer range.

The new Linn Klimax LP12 is now available for £21,795 (about AU$44,000), and existing LP12 owners can upgrade their deck with Radikal and Ekstatik from £1750 (about AU$3500) and £5500 (about AU$1100) respectively.


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Becky Roberts

Becky is the managing editor of What Hi-Fi? and, since her recent move to Melbourne, also the editor of Australian Hi-Fi magazine. During her 10 years in the hi-fi industry, she has been fortunate enough to travel the world to report on the biggest and most exciting brands in hi-fi and consumer tech (and has had the jetlag and hangovers to remember them by). In her spare time, Becky can often be found running, watching Liverpool FC and horror movies, and hunting for gluten-free cake.