Skip to content


Your cart is empty


Subscribe to receive updates, access to exclusive deals, and more... We promise not to give your info away.

Garrard 301 SkyFi Custom Turntable with 12" SME and Sumiko Blackbird - Dream Build

Sale price£0.00
Free Shipping on *ALL* Electronics (Excluding Speakers, Contiguous 48 US States Only)

Pickup currently unavailable at SkyFi 479

Garrard 301 Custom Turntable With 12 Sme And Sumiko Blackbird- Dream Build

Garrard 301 SkyFi Custom Turntable with 12" SME and Sumiko Blackbird - Dream Build

SkyFi 479

Pickup currently unavailable

479 South Broad Street
Glen Rock NJ 07452
United States


We started this build with the coveted Garrard 301 just sourced from the UK which was serviced and is measuring well. It features the strobe platter which is more desirable than the smooth platter, and much better looking.

We mated it to one of our most popular plinths made of multi-layered ply with raw edges, then applied an acrylic top plate to give it a refined look.

Then we installed our favorite 12" tonearm, the SME 3012, which looks right at home in this special SkyFi build. 

The cartridge is fitted to a super cool Yamamoto HS-1A African Black Wood headshell, while the tonearm was upgraded utilizing pure silver wiring and silver shielding (a $1200+ upgrade alone). Kimber Kable Silver RCA's with German high-end WBT terminations ($200+) were also fitted for a perfect connection to your preamp.

The plinth stands on aluminum cone feet with removable tips that are also included.

Lastly this build includes a lightly used and highly regarded Sumiko Blackbird Low Output MC (moving-coil) cartridge. No longer in production, this model has become a cherished and sought after model which is difficult to source.

Cosmetic Condition:
8/10 = Very Good. Excellent front faceplate, one minor flaw on chassis side or top.. See our detailed rating description here.

Working Condition:
Working perfectly and calibrated on our custom turntable calibration stand.

Testing Process:

First we try to identify any mechanical issues, particularly in the tonearm bearings.  We check for freedom of movement or any resistance on both the horizontal and vertical range.  There is a quick test for this which involves placing the table on its front edge and allowing the arm to swing freely like a pendulum.  We then make any adjustments necessary to achieve minimal resistance and sometimes adjust the bearing pressure.  On gimbal tonearms we inspect the cone tip with a magnifier.

We then asses the platter speed by using one of several methods, the most accuse is a playing a test tone on a test record and measuring the frequency out put with a frequency counter or oscilloscope.  We also utilize test equipment to measure the wow and flutter to ensure its within spec.  We do this for all speeds available for that particular model.  Adjustments are then made to achieve proper speed which will vary depending on table drive design.  Some require an adjustment of an internal or external potentiometer, some will require a pulley or motor adjustment.  We also inspect the platter bearing to ensure its properly lubricated keeping in mind that some don't require lubrication at all.

We then inspect the power supply and address any issues with overworked capacitors particularly on Linn and later Thorens machines which tend to need attention.

On fully mechanical vintage tables like the Thorens TD124 and Garrard 301/401 we will go thought the entire mechanism, replace any worn parts and lubricate all components necessary to ensure smooth operation, speed change and low mechanical noise.

When fitting a new cartridge we will go through our detailed calibration process which can involve as many as 12 steps depending on the arm design.  We perform this work on our custom turntable calibration rig which was developed in-house.

Some of these steps include:

• Pivot to spindle adjustment

• Tracing force

• Anti-skate

• Tonearm height

• Lifter height


• Azimuth

• Stylus Distance and Overhang

We then do a critical listening test using our test records and our test system to ensure proper sonics.

SKU: 104620