Oracle Delphi Turntable Flashback on Stereophile

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Stereophile continues the admirable practice of posting selected older reviews to it’s online archive. This is useful because: A) older equipment is still being sold on the used market, and B) older reviews are just as valuable as new ones when taken in the context of the time in which they were originally written.

In addition to posting older individual reviews, Stereophile is also stringing together older reviews of multiple versions of the same component. This is interesting because it shows how the product evolved, and how it compared to similar products at each step in the process.

Here is what Anthony H. Cordesman had to say about the Oracle Delphi Mk.II turntable back in 1986:

The Oracle Delphi Mk.II ($1250) is both a turntable and work of art. It is a visually stunning product, retaining a level of styling that, in my view, has never been equalled by any other audio component. It also adds enough sonic improvements to the original Delphi that it ranks close to the VPI HW-19, and is superior, in naturalness of sound quality, to the SOTA Star Sapphire.

And Thomas J. Norton on the Mk.IV back in 1991:

Using a variety of arms and cartridges, my general impression of the sound of the Oracle Delphi Mk.IV is that it is detailed, tight, quick, and has excellent clarity with a definite tendency to resist sounding in any way veiled, thick, or heavy. Or perhaps I should say that it permits the best arm/cartridge combinations to sound this way.

And Michael Fremer on the Mk.V back in 1997:

The new Oracle offered outstanding image focus and stability, and a very quiet ride—a very low noise floor combined with finely scaled dynamic gradations. The ‘table’s high-frequency performance was smooth yet detailed, indicative of outstanding speed stability and effective energy transfer from the motor to the platter.

Read the full set of Oracle Delphi reviews, or check out the complete list of turntable reviews in the Stereophile review database.