U-Turn Audio, the US-based independent turntable manufacturer, has unveiled a significant refresh to its renowned Orbit series of turntables. With a legacy spanning over a decade, the new generation of Orbit turntables showcases notable enhancements, including a redesigned magnesium tonearm, electronic speed control, revamped drive systems, and a range of customization options.
The original Orbit turntable gained popularity for its affordability, and U-Turn Audio's commitment to preserving this while introducing advancements is evident in the new lineup. The Orbit range comprises four models:
This versatile lineup seeks to provide a tailored solution for a diverse audience, allowing users to choose their preferred configuration and components.
Bob Hertig, U-Turn Audio co-founder and Orbit designer said: “Our mission is to make great analog audio more accessible,…Over the last decade, we’ve built and shipped hundreds of thousands of Orbits across North America and have earned a reputation for high-level performance and quality craftsmanship that doesn’t break the bank. This new generation of Orbit represents a decade of experience, learning, and turntable development. We were able to take something that was already great and make it even better.”
A key highlight of the new Orbit turntables is the incorporation of the OA3 tonearm, crafted from a single-piece magnesium arm tube. This new design is aimed at delivering precise tracking and reduced record wear, ultimately enhancing the overall musical detail. The tonearm comes equipped with adjustable counterweights and an internal anti-skate mechanism, ensuring optimal playback performance.
Electronic speed control is another prominent feature of the Orbit Special and Custom models. This feature allows users to effortlessly switch between playing speeds of 33 and 45 RPM, enhancing convenience and versatility in listening preferences. The revamped drive system, paired with grooved platter designs and a seamless silicone belt, ensures stable and accurate playback at the selected speed.
Customizability remains a core aspect of the Orbit series. Users can personalize their turntables by selecting various components such as cartridges, preamps, platters, speed controls, and isolation feet. This modular design empowers users to gradually upgrade their turntable according to their preferences and budget.
The new Orbit turntables also offer an expanded range of colors and hardwood options, catering to diverse aesthetic preferences. U-Turn Audio emphasizes its commitment to sustainability by utilizing 100% sustainably harvested US hardwoods for its wood turntables, eschewing veneers.
For those seeking further convenience, the Orbit turntables can be equipped with a built-in Pluto 2 Phono Preamp. This addition enables direct connection to powered speakers or amplifiers without the need for a separate phono stage.
U-Turn Audio takes pride in its in-house assembly process at its production facility in Woburn, MA. The company backs its products with a three-year warranty and lifetime customer support, ensuring that customers receive assistance from turntable experts.
Pricing for the new Orbit lineup varies according to the model and configuration. The Orbit Custom starts at $249, offering a customizable solution for enthusiasts. The Orbit Basic, designed as an entry-level option, also starts at $249, offering an affordable introduction to vinyl playback. The Orbit Plus, a step up in terms of audio quality, starts at $399 and features an upgraded acrylic platter for enhanced stability. The Orbit Special, priced starting at $549, introduces electronic speed control and a cue lever for precision tonearm operation.
All four models in the refreshed Orbit lineup are currently available for purchase through U-Turn Audio's official website and select retailers, offering a range of options to suit varying preferences and budgets.