Garrard 301

Garrard 301 - the all-time british classic


Introduced 1954, usually sold as a bare chassis without plinth, tonearm and cartridge

Made from diecast aluminium (chassis and platter), weight 16 lbs. (6 lbs. for the platter),
shaded pole induction motor (magnetically screened) supended on springs,
speed range 32 to 34, 44 to 46 and 76 to 80 r.p.m. approx.


My story :

In 1999 I bought a legendary classic turntable which I thought would be my last one - a Linn LP 12 Sondek with Ittok tonearm and a cartrdige from Benz, the Glider. I originally planned to upgrade it with Lingo, Linto, Ekos and Arkiv - all the way up the Linn ladder.
Around the time I bought the Linn I also entered the fascinating world of the internet, and I soon discovered that this was a great resource for a turntable nut to get all the information about turntables I ever dreamed of.
I also read british hifi journals at that time, and in an issue of Hifi World I saw an article about all-time british classic turntables from Garrard, the 301 and the 401, and I began to search the internet for information on these turntables.

So what had to happen happened indeed - within 6 months I found a nice 301 at Classique Sounds in Leicester and I bought it for 220 UKP (including delivery to Germany).
I quickly built a sturdy plinth using the ideas of the guys at Loricraft, especially their way to decouple the top plate by using rubber balls placed in the corners of the plinth.
My first attempt had a Sumiko Premier MMT and a AT1005/II from Audio Technica mounted as tonearms (see the last picture below).

I then realized that a true 301 has to be equipped with SME arms, and so I tried to find the classics Series II models. Luckily I found them quite fast (read my story behind my Thorens TD 124s) and so hereís the 301 with SME 3009 and 3012 :

Cartridges are a Denon DL 103 D in the 3009 (Clearaudio headshell) and Denon DL 103 R in the 3012 (Orsonic headshell).

In the meantime I dumped this large plinth because I now have a TD 124/II with two SME arms and I thought it would be nice to give the 301 a slightly smaller plinth with just a 3012 on it.
The picture you see at the top of this page shows the 301 how he looks today. The SME 3012 is mounted on a bronze base from Analog Tube Audio, Germany, and in the AT headshell sits a Supex SD 900 Mc Super low output moving coil cartridge. Amplified through an Audio Note AN-S2 Low transformer it feeds the phonostage of my Rogers tube amp and sound simply marvellous.
BTW : tale a look at the dampening rings around the platter. And to be honest : itís not a marble plinth - itís made from MDF and just looks like marble. But it does look great in marble, donít you think ?


Above the picture of my first attempt.

Briefly I had a Garrard 401 too, but I soild it because I like the 301 better and I needed money to feed my desire for one more TD 124 ;-).