Operation is simple too; the speed control and two red LED read-outs (left hand for upper platter, right for lower) also has touch sensitive controls. Two fingers to the left of the display turns the deck on or off, two fingers to the right of the display changes speed. It’s not the fastest spin-up speed, but this increases with use. This isn’t a big problem, even you have a habit of moving between 33 and 45rpm regularly, unless you must stop the platter between discs; fortunately even the record weight is a Michell-like fit-on type, so it doesn’t need to be screwed down onto a stopped record in the manner of an SME clamp.
The Kronos is a big deck; its footprint is 56x36cm and that puts it at the limits of most audio furniture. Which is why the company also makes a dedicated four-column matching stand. It is not cheap, but is beautifully made and shows the company’s commitment to excellence extends beyond the deck itself.
There is a clear (but undisclosed) way to spot when the deck has bedded into its environment. The two platters at first generate a small amount of self-noise. Not much (the kind of thing you will only hear with your ear to the motors), not intrusive and uniform (it’s a low and mild whirr). When it goes away, your turntable is in its happy place. And that’s about the only noise you get from the Kronos. Everything else is music.
The absence of noise floor has been one of the biggest initial attractors of the Kronos among high-enders. If this is down to the counter-rotating platters, or any other aspect of the design is ultimately unimportant (unless you are a rival – or possibly frustrated – turntable designer), but the end result is the sort of absence of background noise that isn’t normally associated with even excellent vinyl replay. This sounds like vinyl nerd speak of the highest order, but listening to the transition from lead-in groove hash to the comparative silence of a unmodulated groove shows just how silent vinyl can be and just how little the Kronos brings to the party. This helps give the music a real sense of structure and definition that vinyl’s digital detractors feel is impossible to find with LP.