Sme 3012 R

I know this old arm is good but I don’t know why David,Rockitman,Tang,Ron,Mike
Use or will use having top tonearm like Sat,EliteAxiom,Black Beauty,Durand

Why 3012 is so special?
I never had and I don’t understand
Only to know for my curiosity
Regards
Gian
 
Last edited by a moderator:

Comments

tima

Industry Expert
Mar 4, 2014
847
412
63
The cutout appears to be the same. I am aware of one SME Model 20/12 in London that was custom made by SME to allow the stock armboard to be shifted slightly on the top chassis to accommodate a 3012 arm. I do not know how they got around the RCA terminal connection. Perhaps that was also adjusted to suit.
Thank you.
 
May 30, 2010
15,435
668
113
Portugal
Not possible, Fransisco. A dealer wrote me that it may be possible to replace the rear arm tube stub with stock tubing and cut it shorter to make the arm fit, but that would mean the counterweight could not be moved by rotating the knob on the back of the arm, which is a nice feature. David wrote me that any modification to this arm messes with the sound, so I am hesitant to modify the arm, hence the idea for the outboard arm pod.
You have tow possibilities there - moving the tonearm to a safe zone and use an non SME alignment of the cartridge (as most people with SME's do) or just moving the two offending O-rings to another position in the same the pillar . I also would never modify the the rear arm tube, but would not mind using the rear arm tube of the 3009R on the 3012R - same materials and structure, but one centimeter shorter.
 
Likes: Lagonda

shakti

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2015
497
253
63
Cologne, Germany
If someone is interested to buy a near NOS SME 3012R,
I just added one offer to the WBF Classifieds listings.
 

Pani

Member
Jun 4, 2013
50
1
8
I am in the market for a good tonearm without spending $5k :).
Has anyone compared the 3012R to a 3012 S2 ? With a lot of similarities between them, do they sound similar or very different ?

Also how does a 3009R sound compared to 3012R. I normally like 9-10” arms hence this question.
 

Pani

Member
Jun 4, 2013
50
1
8
I have my eyes on FR64s too but going by it’s effective mass, I am worried I will have to choose between Low compliance carts only. So I am looking at a medium mass tonearm to begin with
 

shakti

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2015
497
253
63
Cologne, Germany
I have my eyes on FR64s too but going by it’s effective mass, I am worried I will have to choose between Low compliance carts only. So I am looking at a medium mass tonearm to begin with
Don't worry, the FR64s is compatible with more carts, that you might consider in the beginning.
Give this arm a try. If you do not like, you can easily sell again (like SME 3012r)
 

Pani

Member
Jun 4, 2013
50
1
8
And where does the schick tonearm stand in this line up ? Now he has a 9.5” version too. I don’t see many out here trying or talking about the schick arm!
 

shakti

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2015
497
253
63
Cologne, Germany
And where does the schick tonearm stand in this line up ? Now he has a 9.5” version too. I don’t see many out here trying or talking about the schick arm!
If you like to get a heavy tonearm and to buy new, there is not too much choice. Apart from Ikeda you can get the Schick tonearms, which are nice sounding, but not the top of what you can get. ( I have not heard the new short one)
Some of my friends have changed from Schick to Groovemaster. I believe, that this tonearm is an interesting alternative in the heavy Tonarme product offering:

https://audio-creativeshop.nl/groovemaster-2019/

https://audio-creativeshop.nl/product/groovemaster-ii-tonearm/
 
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Solypsa

Active Member
Jun 7, 2017
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Seattle
www.solypsa.com
Agreed. I am a dealer for both. The Schick is very good with a wide range of cartridge from medium compliance up. The GMII is quite a bit higher in effective mass and a standout with the very low compliance types. Both are constructed very well.

Pani, too bad we are not closer to each other i could send you a 10" Groovemaster II I have to try out :)
 

rockhopper

New Member
Sep 10, 2014
24
10
3
Malvern Worcestershire UK
I found the Schick 12 ok but easily surpassed by my SME 3012R 2203s.
There is an upgraded Groovemaster available in the U.K. By Timestep.
They also import from Japan the superb Glanz S series which is really worth looking at.
If especially flush then consider the SD series.
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
11,687
1,480
113
London
I have never heard the Schick sound good except when he uses it on his table in Munich. And oh boy, it always sounds better than what Schroeder gets there in the same room. Both use vdh master signature and it is easily the best analog set up in Munich year after year
 

shakti

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2015
497
253
63
Cologne, Germany
Today was one of those rainy days, time to do some crazy stuff and to try things out :)

Since a time I was dreaming about to put a "real High End" cable on to m SME 3012R

I love the original old cable, but having tried the vdh "The Rock" one, you hear the limitations and the good things of the original cable. It ist always the same story about "resolution" versus" natural flow".

But I wanted to have the maximum of resolution and still a good flow of music.

So I connected my JPS Aluminata Reference RCA to my SME 3012R, which is a heavy RCA cable ..., I had to stabilize the cable, that the weight of the cable is not (may be?) destroying the RCA connectors of the SME 3012R...

The effect was "whow", big fun :)

my current cartridge, the Soundsmith "voice" liked the JPS cable a lot.

I am not sure, if I will stick to this cable in this position, but for the moment it makes fun to listen to some well known records and to enjoy all the information hidden before.

Sometimes rainy days are sooo nice and welcome :)

IMG_1222.jpg IMG_1223.jpg IMG_1224.jpg
 
May 30, 2010
15,435
668
113
Portugal
Today was one of those rainy days, time to do some crazy stuff and to try things out :)

Since a time I was dreaming about to put a "real High End" cable on to m SME 3012R
I could see that you are not using the SME rubber gommets - any special reason to take them out? I have ordered a spare plate to try the SME3012R with and without gommets but I am still waiting for it.
 

shakti

Well-Known Member
May 9, 2015
497
253
63
Cologne, Germany
I could see that you are not using the SME rubber gommets - any special reason to take them out? I have ordered a spare plate to try the SME3012R with and without gommets but I am still waiting for it.
I am still using the rubber grommets, but my old (maybe too old) rubber grommets are relatively soft, so hard too see, if fitted. I tried without on different decks, but mostly I prefer with grommet.

IMG_1225.jpg
 

dminches

Active Member
Oct 22, 2011
837
82
28
Today was one of those rainy days, time to do some crazy stuff and to try things out :)

Since a time I was dreaming about to put a "real High End" cable on to m SME 3012R

I love the original old cable, but having tried the vdh "The Rock" one, you hear the limitations and the good things of the original cable. It ist always the same story about "resolution" versus" natural flow".

But I wanted to have the maximum of resolution and still a good flow of music.

So I connected my JPS Aluminata Reference RCA to my SME 3012R, which is a heavy RCA cable ..., I had to stabilize the cable, that the weight of the cable is not (may be?) destroying the RCA connectors of the SME 3012R...

The effect was "whow", big fun :)
I did a similar thing a couple months ago when I replaced the original cable with an Audioquest WEL Signature. It is never coming off. It made a huge difference to my ears.
 
Likes: shakti

Tango

VIP/Donor
Mar 12, 2017
2,943
1,715
113
Bangkok
Today was one of those rainy days, time to do some crazy stuff and to try things out :)

Since a time I was dreaming about to put a "real High End" cable on to m SME 3012R

I love the original old cable, but having tried the vdh "The Rock" one, you hear the limitations and the good things of the original cable. It ist always the same story about "resolution" versus" natural flow".

But I wanted to have the maximum of resolution and still a good flow of music.

So I connected my JPS Aluminata Reference RCA to my SME 3012R, which is a heavy RCA cable ..., I had to stabilize the cable, that the weight of the cable is not (may be?) destroying the RCA connectors of the SME 3012R...

The effect was "whow", big fun :)

my current cartridge, the Soundsmith "voice" liked the JPS cable a lot.

I am not sure, if I will stick to this cable in this position, but for the moment it makes fun to listen to some well known records and to enjoy all the information hidden before.

Sometimes rainy days are sooo nice and welcome :)

View attachment 55819 View attachment 55820 View attachment 55821
You and I like to switch around tonearms, carts, equipments. I had a stiff heavy phono cable on the SME before. It was excellent, more revealing but to me it does not mean the info was not there with the original SME cable. The SME was just less "show up." I took out the heavy cable and now using only original cable plainly because it is easiest to plug in and out without stressing both the tonearm outlets and the phono inlets. For those who have no habit like me there are certainly more revealing phono cables out there to suit individual needs.

Kind regards,
Tang
 

tima

Industry Expert
Mar 4, 2014
847
412
63
You'd think cable makers would have a sense of their wires used in a context. I've seen the backs of some audio racks where the RCA inputs are bending under the strain. There is a market opening for another piece of audiophile tweakery: cable strain relief. But I'd rather see this tackled on the cable itself. Particularly for tonearm cables, but the issue is endemic. Didn't we see pictures recently of 'substantial' (hefty) Kuro interconnects?

With different pieces of gear going in and out, I do this now out of habit:

Cable Support.jpg
 

PeterA

Well-Known Member
Dec 7, 2011
5,588
469
83
North Shore of Boston
I am still using the rubber grommets, but my old (maybe too old) rubber grommets are relatively soft, so hard too see, if fitted. I tried without on different decks, but mostly I prefer with grommet.
I presume that the rubber grommets are intended to isolate the arm from vibrations within the armboard. Has anyone tried an full-sized isolation gasket instead made from Isodamp or some similar material?

Shakti, could you describe how the sound differs with and without the grommets in place?
 
May 30, 2010
15,435
668
113
Portugal
I presume that the rubber grommets are intended to isolate the arm from vibrations within the armboard. Has anyone tried an full-sized isolation gasket instead made from Isodamp or some similar material?

Shakti, could you describe how the sound differs with and without the grommets in place?
Apparently these grommets were needed with old turntables, mostly idler drive, that produced a lot of vibration, and the arm was designed to use them. Although they are probably not needed in many modern turntables, taking them out will change the original sound.

As I did not want to drill the EMT927 I used some double-sided adhesive tape to glue the base to the plinth. I played with the thickness , length and width of the two lateral tape slices to get the same apparent rigidity as the grommets, but never compared them directly.
 

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