Product Search Result


 Criterion System


Click On Main Image for Larger View


Continuum Audio Labs


➢ Nested Platter Design using our new proprietary formula for Magnesium Alloy. 30kg Mass of platter assembly 330mm Diameter. ➢ New MILSPEC Alloy used for highly damped platter ballast. ➢ New Fully Sealed Self Lubricating Highly Damped Rigid Bearing Design with Inverted 30mm Bearing shaft of special alloy running in ultra hard steel bushings. ➢ Vacuum Rotary Feedthrough for main bearing with low friction polymer seal. ➢ Massive Highly damped Magnesium Alloy Chassis with internal ribbing Shape Optimised for new bearing platter assembly using Reshape(tm) software. ➢ New Motor Technology Linear 3Phase AC - 24Volt DC Brushless design with integral optical encoder for motion control. Proprietary DSP software designed for ultra-low cogging and torque ripple with speed stability of 0.006%. High Torque 600 oz/inch capability continuous. ➢ 33, 45, 78 with wide range adjustment and absolute lock. ➢ Motor is Belt Drive using Pyrathane precision oring. ➢ New Vacuum Pump design with Stealth Mode Operation. Designed for continuous operation but quiet enough to house in room and in rack. ➢ New proprietary design Pulse Removal and Echo Filter System (PREFS) to remove platter to record vibration signature of continuous vacuum pump systems. ➢ New Decoupled Armboard design using Magnetic Stabilisation System (new lower cost derivative of the Caliburn Armboard System)





Continuum Audio Labs was a relative unknown before January CES 2004 when it quietly launched the Caliburn Cobra system. The audiophile world was shocked by the advanced performance of this and soon learned that it was a product engineered to play music with higher fidelity than any other system to date.

Several orders followed the launch and it was a year later that January CES 2005 Stereophile magazine had placed the Caliburn system on it's front cover and asked Is this the Worlds Best Turntable? Furthermore, in 2006 the Caliburn System achieved the dual accolades of Stereophile Analogue Component of the Year and overall Product of the Year. An utterly stunning victory, especially in an age when CDs are thought to be reaching antiquity! The success of the Caliburn System meant that the greater audiophile community was keen to see Continuum Audio Labs trickle down the technology from the Caliburn into a more accessible solution. The original team was again assembled to discuss materials choices, functional specifications, and new design opportunities to simplify the mechanisms involved in building a quality turntable system and maintaining the signature Continuum sound of effortless musicality. The "Dream Team" went back to the drawing board - literally. No aspect of the system was left unquestioned. Do we need a chassis? Do we need Vacuum holdown? Do we need a nested platter? What motion control technology can we use to effectively drive the platter and reduce the complexity? What other materials are capable of getting the desired result? The methods and powerful software suites employed to design the Caliburn system were once again employed. The team was given the opportunity to start from a clean slate whilst benefiting from the immense body of knowledge that had been gathered during the design and production of the Caliburn-Cobra System. 

Continuum’s goal was to discover how far they could push the boundaries once again. The daunting challenge issued was to try to recreate the performance of the Caliburn-Cobra System if this was possible under the constraints of the design-brief. 

The Criterion system was divided into logical subsystems, where each area of expertise could be focused on the individual tasks. At each stage all of the members of the team were able to peer-review the various concepts and early prototypes to ensure the goals we had established for the Criterion were being met. 

This very concentrated engineering effort resulted in some clever new approaches to the classic problems faced by turntable designers. 

One of the prime briefs was to maintain the ability of the Criterion to render piano recordings with the realism that has stunned Caliburn listeners. This dynamic capability is a challenge for most turntable and arm combinations. Continuum understood where this ability stems from and had built the Caliburn using very expensive techniques and materials. The new challenge was to try to reach the same standard with more affordable materials and design. Some exciting new materials engineering was used in the development of the Criterion platter system. Again military grade materials were sourced from the world of submarine engineering and adapted to use in the Platter subsystem. This allowed us to extend the capabilities of the platter beyond the common off-the-shelf materials used in other designs. Designing vacuum hold down using a continuously operating pump was also an area of particular challenge: We wanted to ensure that the pulsation for of the vacuum pump was neutralized. By designing a "Stealth Mode" pump (which in itself set new benchmarks for silent operation) with a new filtration system that cut out pulsing, we could then design a more compact inverted-bearing solution. delivering high torque with low or zero cogging to drive the massive platter assembly was the next challenge. Using new software-driven DSP solutions for motion control enabled us to use a more cost-effective drive solution and tune it close to the performance of the unique Caliburn True Zero Cogging solution. Again optical high-count encoding feedback solutions were utilized to deliver peerless speed accuracy.