Pro-Ject Automat A1 is company's first fully automatic turntable

Pro-Ject A1
(Image credit: Pro-Ject)

Pro-Ject is rounding out its turntable offering by introducing its first fully automatic turntable series. The suitably named Automat range will comprise turntables that offer “class-leading sound alongside an effortless user experience”, and its first member is the Automat A1, yours for £369 (around $499, AU$699). 

Having already ventured past purist turntables to those with built-in phono stages, Bluetooth transmitters and even bundled speakers, the Austrian brand is now looking to take turntable convenience that much further with fully automatic operation. All you have to do, in Pro-Ject’s words, is “set the playback speed and then push START”. 

Pro-Ject A1

(Image credit: Pro-Ject)

The development has been made possible through a new partnership agreement with Fehrenbacher GmbH in St Georgen, Germany (the production facility of the original 20th-century Dual turntables), allowing the Automat range to benefit from proven made-in-Europe automatic drive technologies. 

Pro-Ject says the automatic operation of its A1 and future Automat models also benefits from being entirely mechanical, rather than reliant on extra built-in electronics, and does not impact performance during record playback.

Aside from automatic operation, the A1 is plug-and-play in other ways too. It’s a belt-drive deck that operates at 33 and 45RPM, with a built-in moving-magnet phono stage (line-level and aux inputs available) and pre-set OM 10 cartridge.

The Pro-Ject A1 will be available from next month in a black finish. Pro-Ject hasn't released details of further models, but if the naming system (and A1's modest price) is anything to go by, we should probably only be expecting more expensive models.

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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 eight 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.

  • doifeellucky
    Randy has reviewed this already.
    Reply
  • manicm
    ....and it looks cheap and nasty. I'm assuming anyone wanting a fully automatic turntable, including me, is also looking for a bit of luxury.

    I would gladly pay 100 extra quid for a more substantial looking platter, electronic push buttons instead of the nasty and ghastly plastic lever for start/stop, a wood finish or aluminium plinth, and just some general class - notice the horribly finished fixed counterweight.

    This kit may sound great, but does absolutely nothing for me. Project got this all wrong.

    It's like asking for a Bentley, and instead getting a Beetle.
    Reply
  • jhnpennington
    manicm said:
    ....and it looks cheap and nasty. I'm assuming anyone wanting a fully automatic turntable, including me, is also looking for a bit of luxury.

    I would gladly pay 100 extra quid for a more substantial looking platter, electronic push buttons instead of the nasty and ghastly plastic lever for start/stop, a wood finish or aluminium plinth, and just some general class - notice the horribly finished fixed counterweight.

    This kit may sound great, but does absolutely nothing for me. Project got this all wrong.

    It's like asking for a Bentley, and instead getting a Beetle.
    But that product doesn’t exist.
    Reply
  • manicm
    jhnpennington said:
    But that product doesn’t exist.

    Actually it does, don't know the prices, but Dual make automatic turntables. And one day if my surrounding change, I'd pick up a Technics or direct drive Dual.
    Reply
  • jhnpennington
    manicm said:
    Actually it does, don't know the prices, but Dual make automatic turntables. And one day if my surrounding change, I'd pick up a Technics or direct drive Dual.
    Yes, but not within (or even close to) 100 quid of the Automat.
    Reply
  • thomas.dahl
    The project automat is a rebranded 'rekkord' player produced in Germany in the original Dual factory. If you want the original 'rekkord' player in higher specs go to their web page. The current Dual players are believed to come from Asia as the original owners lost the rights to the name.

    The Rekkord F400 looks neat in nice wood finishes. Very tempting. Around 800 Euro but without the preamp.

    The F100 is basically the Project Automat although it has a different cartridge. Price is similar.
    Reply