Brinkmann have long been highly regarded in the field of analogue audio, their turntables are a masterful example of German engineering at its best. At the top of the Brinkmann food chain sits the Balance.
The Balance has the beautiful styling and world class build quality of the rest of the beloved Brinkmann range, but in terms of performance it is a step above.
The first thing you notice with the Balance is its solid 90mm high 20kg machined aluminium platter, it has the recognisable polished crystal glass top so no mat is required. This is a high mass turntable with substance. Under the impressive platter though lays the magic. The bearing, which is made of hardened stainless steel and rotates in sintered brass bushings, is fixed into its housing, is non-removable and is maintenance free. The bearing has its own power supply which is used to heat it and ensure the bearing is at the optimal temperature at all times despite fluctuations in the room temperature. Both the motor PSU and bearing PSU are housed in a single box.
Unlike the Bardo and Oasis models, the Balance uses a belt drive system instead of direct drive. Helmut Brinkmann designed his Sinus motor to develop the turntable and it impressively brings the heavy platter up to speed quickly. Something that is not always the case with high mass players. When asked why he didn’t use the direct drive system like the other players in the range Helmet Brinkmann said “We don’t think that direct drive is in principle better than belt. The Balance’s new Sinus motor uses many of the technical aspects of our direct-drive motor, transferred to the needs of a belt drive. ‘That way we can add some aspects – good speed stability, low wow and flutter and cogging – to the belt drive that are usually a strong “plus” of the direct drive. On the other hand, we can keep a heavy platter without the need for a very powerful motor to drive it.”
The Balance can be upgraded using Brinkmann’s valve PSU, RONT II. Helmet speaks highly of upgrading to the RONT, saying “‘The tubes in the RöNt II act like a mains power conditioner, due to their vacuum. Additionally, they add all the sonic advantages of tubes like better texture and musical flow, just as in a good amp. Our circuit works similarly to a Class A single ended amplifier, the motor in this case being the output load.”
Sonically, the Balance is exceptional, it gives an effortlessly smooth sound with impressive controlled deep bass. The sound is open and spacious but with loads of detail in the mid-range. The highs are crisp. It brings out what is so special about vinyl.
We believe the Balance should be classed in the absolute elite category when it comes to record players. There are a handful of players out there which operate at such a high level they are considered ‘super decks’. The Brinkmann Balance is no doubt a super deck.
We now have the Balance on permanent demonstration adding to our collection of high-end players including the Kronos Pro, Vertere RG-1 and the Linn Klimax LP12 w/ the Tangerine Stiletto upgrade. Get in touch to book a demonstration.