Posted on 3rd June, 2019


A prototype of The Wand 14-4 Turntable attracted plenty of interest at the Melbourne International Hi-Fi Show back in 2017. Its crisp styling and the outstanding level of finish signalled this was a vinyl spinner to be taken seriously. 

And the turntable from New Zealand's 'Design, Build, Listen' has been attracting plenty of well-earned press since being showcased in Milan, Munich and Melbourne. It's no surprise as underneath, and atop The Wand’s sumptuous chassis, there are bundles of elegant and intelligent design features.

The Wand Turntable’s designer also creates the more well-known 'The Wand' tonearm. And we all know it’s an audiophile calibre arm with an accessible price.

The visible centrepiece of the new turntable is its large 14-inch platter. DBL call it a smart platter because the extra mass provides for greater inertia, said to be 20 per cent better than conventional platters of the same mass.

To reduce resonances, the platter features a four-layer sandwich of platter damps. An acrylic playing surface also ensures the only vibrations transmitted to a tonearm are those made by a stylus reading the vinyl groove.

To ensure the vinyl record beds flat with the platter is the task of the Wand’s screw down clamp, a design that allows the record label to remain visible.

The 14-4’s plinth is made from German plywood, and it has an asymmetric shape and machined holes and slats to disperse noise and vibrations.

This plinth sits on three feet that are suspended by silicon rings, and it's said there's no tuning required on this largely ‘set and forget’ turntable.

The drive to the platter is via a DC motor and a belt driven by a very large pulley to provide speeds of 33 1/3 and 45 rpm. 78 rpm can be made to order. The Wand has a flawless electronic brake for speedy record changing.

The Wand Turntable really is a smart design. To understand how clever, you only need to focus on its lid that is mechanically outside the Wand’s playing system. It’s a design that allows for cueing a record to the start of the groove when the lid is down.

The 14-4 Wand Turntable can be fitted with 9.5”, 10.3” or 12” tonearms but The Wand tonearms will clearly provide the best synergistic match.

Design, Build, Listen has started shipping the first batch of 14-4 turntables to distributors. Local pricing and availability have not yet been confirmed.

Peter Familari's avatar

Peter Familari

One of the veterans of the Australian HiFi industry, Peter was formerly the Audio-Video Editor of the Herald Sun for over two decades. One of the most-respected audio journalists in Australia, Peter brings his unparalleled experience and a unique story-telling ability to StereoNET.

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Posted in: Hi-Fi
Tags: design build listen  the wand