Fluance RT81+ Turntable

We get a lot of queries from audiophile newbies asking us how they should start on their turntable journey, so we’re going to address that all-important Q today by focusing on the Fluance RT81+, a new entry-point ’table from the notable Canadian manufacturer. (We also know a number of the AP faithful often get similar Qs asking about where to get started in the wide world of turntables, so feel free to share and share alike.)

First, a word or two about Fluance’s background. The company’s name is a combination of the prefix “Flu,” which is Latin for “flowing” or “wave,” and the suffix, “ance,” which is Latin for “a state of being.” The brand was established in 1999 by founder Deepak Jain in Niagara Falls, Ontario, who has a lifelong passion for reproducing the “feeling” of live concert sound — first with speakers, then with turntables.

To better understand, Fluance’s overall turntable philosophy, the following YouTube clip fills in the blanks quite nicely.

And now, back to the latest Fluance turntable offering. An upgrade on one of their other entry-point turntables, the main goals for the Elite series RT81+, according to Fluance, was for it to be “focused on two critical factors: enhanced resonance isolation and exceptional upgradability.”

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With the RT81+, Fluance continues, “we have utilized premium components to isolate the music signal from disruptive vibrations.” This is said to be achieved by way of adjustable, spring-loaded isolation feet and a dampened aluminum anti-resonant PM50 acrylic platter, both of which “work in concert to improve frequency response and enhance signal clarity.” An acrylic mat with a resonant frequency “akin to vinyl” has also been incorporated into the RT81+ design spec.

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The RT81+ is equipped with an Audio-Technica VM95E moving magnet (MM) cartridge, which enables further A-T VM series upgradability and is mounted on a removable headshell for, quote, “easy swapping.”

Crafted from “solid engineered” wood, the RT81+ turntable comes in finish options of natural walnut, piano black, piano white, and matte white. Other RT81+ features include an S-type tonearm, Texas Instruments phono preamp, auto stop, gold-plated RCA connections, dust cover with two hinges, counterweight (PFHTCW), rubber belt, 45rpm adapter, bubble level, 3ft RCA cable with ground wire (PFHTCA), and a 5ft power adapter (100V-240V, 50/60Hz AC).

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Fluance also has another step-up ’table of note — the RT85N, as seen directly above. The RT85N comes equipped with a polished elliptical diamond Nagaoka MP-110 MM cartridge, servo-controlled belt-drive motor with speed regulating optical sensor, mass-loaded multi-layered wood chassis, and three rubber, spike-type adjustable isolation feet.

Finally, the Fluance RT81+ turntable has an SRP of $299.99, while the RT85N has an SRP of $499.99.

For more about Fluance, go here.
To find out how to purchase Fluance gear, go here.

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FLUANCE RT81+ TURNTABLE
($299.99)

Features & Specs
Playback speeds: 33 1/3 RPM, 45 RPM
Playback speed variation: ±1%
Wow and flutter: 0.2%
S/N ratio: weighted: 67dB or higher (A-weighted, 20kHz LPF); unweighted: 60dB or higher (A-weighted, 20kHz LPF)
Platter dimensions: 12in / 30cm (diameter); 0.52in / 15mm (height)
Platter weight: 1.25lb (566g)
Effective tonearm mass: 0.99oz (28.2g)
Overhang: 0.76in (19.2mm)
Line output: 140mV (–17dBV)
Input: 100-240 V AC (50/60 Hz)
Output: 12V / 500mA
Consumption: 1.5W
Phono output: 4.0mV (±3dB)
Unit dimensions: 16.5 x 5.75 x 14/25in / 41.9 x 14.6 x 36.2cd (w/h/d)
Unit weight: 14.1lb (6/4kg)

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COMMENTS
Standells's picture

It is fairly misleading to describe Fluance as a "Canadian manufacturer" when none of their products are made in Canada. Their turntables are made in Taiwan.

For actual Canadian manufacturers of turntables (but not entry level) Oracle Audio and Stable 33.33 are options.

orthobiz's picture

Just yesterday was talking someone out of playing ANY record on a Crosely...

A bit 'nrelated. When can we 'top using 'postrophes 'vry time LOUDspeaker, TURNtable and TONEarm appears? Like we're talking about buying a speaker for a conference or a table at IKEA or a replacement arm for a mannequin?

Rant 'ver. 'Hank you.

Paul

Mike Mettler's picture
First -- good on ya re the "talk out," Paul ... I've done that too!

Second -- I'll take your apostrophe point under 'dvisement. It certainly has its most necessary place in certain areas of grammatically inclined contractions, but perhaps we can retire its front-end usage with the table abbreviation.

volvic's picture

People ask me what table they should get, and I usually say to aim as high as possible; Technics 1200GR is a great entry-level way to get into the joys of vinyl. When they can't spend that much, I usually tell them to spend less on the table but try to get as good a cartridge as you can afford. Many years ago, I was surprised when I swapped a mistracking Denon DL-160 for a Shure V15 MK V MR and realized how good vinyl really was. I admit I was close to ditching it for CDs in the early 80s, and I am glad I didn't. This entry-level is good for most, but think how much more one can get from it with a better cartridge. After thirty years, I still use that Shure cartridge, have purchased more, and installed them on all my rigs.

RG's picture

You note the inclusion of a “dampened aluminum anti-resonant PM50 acrylic platter” with the Art81+ which is incorrect. Their site actually notes the RT81+ includes a “Dampened Aluminum Platter with Acrylic Mat”. The provide platter is NOT acrylic and I see no evidence that Fluance sells an aluminum platter AND a dampened aluminum platter. I think what Fluance is suggesting is that the combination of the acrylic mat on the aluminum platter provides additional dampening. What I would like to know is how the acrylic mat on the aluminum platter compare to the acrylic platter alone. Your thoughts?

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