Acoustic Signature

German analog powerhouse Acoustic Signature roared into High End Munich with a trio of new products: two feature-packed phono stages and a cutting-edge tonearm. Their booth was a showcase of gleaming AS equipment, from precision tonearms and turntables, including the behemoth Invictus Neo, to meticulously crafted, matte-finish phono stages.

AS’s Gunther Frohnhöfer proudly manned the booth showcasing the massive, military-bold Acoustic Signature Tango Apex NEO phono balanced preamp (€24,998) featuring one balanced (XLR) and two unbalanced (RCA) inputs, adjustable gain, switchable capacitance, adjustable impedance, a subsonic filter, balanced (XLR) and unbalanced (RCA) outputs, and a built-in headphone amplifier.

The new Acoustic Signature TA-1000 NEO tonearm (€49,998) gets its top-of-the-line kick from bespoke bearings that are “DLC treated to make them ultra durable, and further reduce friction by over 50% compared to any other high-class bearings in the market,” see the website. “Our DLC bearings are simply the best in terms of precision, low friction, and innovative vibration-absorbing material.”

Special features of the TA-1000 include an “extensively damped multi-structure aluminum armtube,” available in 9" or 12" lengths, new NEO stainless steel tonearm axis design, optional titanium headshell, SME-type mounting versions, and a brass counterweight. On-the-fly VTA adjustment is available.

Finally, the new Acoustic Signature Tango Reference NEO phono preamp (€5998) works in MC, MI, or MM configurations, has a resonance-optimized chassis made from nonmagnetic aluminum, short signal paths, a subsonic filter, adjustable load impedance, four selectable gain steps, and what AS calls an “over-dimensioned power supply.”

mp's picture

"works in MC, MI, or MM configurations"
What's the difference between MI and MM in a phono stage?

Metalhead's picture

I was trying so hard to hold my water and save, save, save for the Typhoon or maybe luck out on a used Montana but just could not wait. When I was informed that AS was raising prices this year I caved and ordered a Tornado.

Anticipation is high and I hope it presents vinyl as good as the NEO line looks. Started with Thorens way back when and looking forward to experiencing German Engineering again.

Glotz's picture

You thought right with the Tornado.. All prices are going up June 1st.

I was trying to save up for the Maximus Neo and... it's just going to take longer.


Metalhead's picture

Thanks Glotz

Appreciate the comment. No Envy, Get Even.

Do not know if you are on the East or West Coast or middle of the country but there is a open box Maximus NEO at a great price in Massachusetts that I thought hard about. I do have 2 tonearms so a Tornado is ideal for my situation.

The tables are more of a Mercedes Benz or BMW type of acquisition than a Volkswagen (which is more where I reside) but as I devote hours to vinyl listening several days a week I decided screw it and went ahead with the purchase.

Thanks again and I am kind of jazzed about scoring one. My Thorens 125 and 126 satisfied me for decades and excited about the Tornado spinning my records.