If you are down for a conversational turntable and if money is no object, then you may want to check out the MINIOT Wheel 2 Turntable. If Wheel sounds familiar to you, that’s because it is the second-generation round turntable from the Dutch company MINIOT.
What looks like just a round platter is the fully functional turntable. What we failed to mention about Wheel 6 years ago is that it is literally a turntable turned upside down since the technology that makes it tick is inside the base, under the record, in a beautiful walnut or cherry base.
As such it actually spins counterclockwise. Seeing it turn the other way around does make you feel like you are walking into an Inception scenario, doesn’t it?
Like the original Wheel, Wheel 2 works upright on a stand or mounted on a wall, or flat on a table like a regular turntable. It boasts a linear tonearm and phono stage that is carefully tuned to match the Audio Technica AT95E cartridge to deliver warm and detailed sound. From the horse’s mouth:
“Three closed loop motors and the linear tonearm control all movement where it counts most: at the tip of the stylus. AT95E cartridge provides the built-in high-end preamp with a precisely controlled signal. The elliptical stylus is truly general purpose. Audiophile or average records; it forgivingly turns them into beautiful music. The unmatched stylus tracking and Constant Groove Speed are true turntable innovations, unique to Wheel 2.”
The unique phono stage built into the linear tonearm allows it to deliver a pure RIAA equalized signal to the output of your choice, be it an amplifier, a pair of headphones, active speakers, or a wireless setup.
With Wheel 2, controls are now via the Slide Track with a graphic line display. The Slide Track lets you skip tracks, adjust the volume, control the stylus weight, and more, while the line display provides visual feedback for every action.
Each Wheel 2 is crafted by hand by a small team which explains its steep price of €1,999 (approximately US$2,193) and the wait of at least 6 weeks for delivery.