Dave’s Faves – MoFi UltraDeck Plus

MoFi UltraDeck Plus Turntable With UltraTracker Cartridge: $2000

If you have a top flight record collection you should consider MoFi’s new UltraDeck+.
MoFi tables and cartridges are designed by a team that includes Allen Perkins of Spiral Groove. The Spiral Groove SG 1.2 runs $36k and is considered as good as any turntable at any price. UltraDeck+ is exactly what you would expect, a workingman’s, scaled down version. Of course you’re not going to get the heft (80lbs!) and swagger of a 36k table. But for $2k, you’re getting a big slice of the pie!

Your vinyl is a “plate” of millions of undulations. The goal of precise record playing is to play what’s cut into the record and that’s it. Imagine sitting in a truck riding down the road while you’re trying to write on a piece of paper on the dash. You’ve got the vibration of the truck itself, as well as the inconsistencies in the road. That’s what your stylus is dealing with while reading records.

UltraDeck+ is a massive guy (25lbs) for $2k. It provides an extremely quiet framework from which your LPs can reveal their music. The super sturdy design features a 1.3” Delrin platter which delivers deep black backgrounds and a quiet noise floor. Delrin was chosen due to pitch accuracy and accurate rhythmic drive. UD’s damping consists of three heavy aluminum plates bonded to an MDF body. The extra mass minimizes coloration.

UD’s tonearm is a 10” straight, aluminum gimbaled bearing design. Its rigidity is solid. Machining of the arm bearings is exquisite. UD’s arm uses Cardas Audio wiring. A unique hardened steel inverted bearing system with sapphire thrust pad and isolating feet provide superb rotational stability.

UltraDeck+ can be purchased alone for $1800. But it makes more sense to buy it with the UltraTracker MM cartridge for $2k. The cartridge sells for $500 alone. You’re getting it for $200 in this package.

The UltraTracker cartridge is a Silver Billet Body (not plastic) with a nude, Fineline stylus. It incorporates two magnet structures instead of one (like the other guys) to emulate the LP cutting head. Output is 3.5mV so it will work well with any MM phono preamp, but please consider MoFi’s StudioPhono!

The sound from UD+ is super smooth and SOLID. The background is quiet and black. The music has fine detail and sounds RELAXED. You don’t hear the strained “ringing” associated with just about every record playing combo near $2k. As a piano fan first and foremost, I appreciate the lack of active rumble and resonance endemic to so many analog systems regardless of price. You’ll find UD+ competes with tables costing several times more money- and has none of their set up idiosyncrasies. Allot $2k for playing records and buy more records!