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Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
2009-06-06, 21:49
Post: #1
Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
Since I've got this URL on my clipboard I thought I'd post it. It's a history of factory upgrades to many major Linn products, when they took place (in terms of year and serial number) and what the upgrade involved. It's very useful if you're in the used market.

http://nornan.se/linnsite/

LP12 Black Ash, Radikal/Dynamik, Keel, Ekos SE, Kandid> Urika, Akurate CD>Klimax Kontrol/1, Dynamik (Balanced Silvers)>Klimax Chakra Twin (Linn Silver RCA Interconnects throughout)>Grado RA1>Grado RS1>>LK400>Proac Response D2
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2009-06-06, 23:03
Post: #2
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
Thanks, LHB ! Cool

Great, that's updated again and the latest version I have seen so far ...

Regards,

Claas
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2009-06-07, 08:27
Post: #3
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
Excellent reference site.

What I can not understand is why Linn do not have this information available on the forum.

Main: KEDSM, 350's with 4 Tundra Stereos and Akurate Exakt Box 10, 520 rears, Oppo 203, Sky Q.
Office: Renew DS2 and 530s.
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2009-06-07, 11:37
Post: #4
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
flatcoat Wrote:Excellent reference site.

What I can not understand is why Linn do not have this information available on the forum.


Perhaps if the moderator is reading he could make this a sticky thread.

LP12 Black Ash, Radikal/Dynamik, Keel, Ekos SE, Kandid> Urika, Akurate CD>Klimax Kontrol/1, Dynamik (Balanced Silvers)>Klimax Chakra Twin (Linn Silver RCA Interconnects throughout)>Grado RA1>Grado RS1>>LK400>Proac Response D2
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2009-06-18, 18:36 (This post was last modified: 2017-06-16 13:23 by charlie1.)
Post: #5
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
This thread could be a very useful resource for many and save searching around the forum forever and a day. Here's a few previously posted items - I hope the original posters don't mind my copying their comments here - let me know if you do and I'll remove.

Note that for the past few years, Linn has numbered all their products with the same format consecutive serial numbers, so the numbers in no way differentiate the products. This means someone ordering a pair of Solos together may receive components with serial numbers some way apart, even though they were both manufactured at a similar point in time.


SOURCE (ANALOGUE):

LP12
Very First LP12s:
What You See and Hear (2014-08-23) Wrote:The chassis is the original pressed item which is quite thin steel with no bracing. The bearing housing cylinder is crimped around the thrust plate with a "castellated" appearance and this only happened on early units. The motor has the early, "pre-Nirvana" bracket with spring loaded bearing and the spindle assembly has a coat of hammerite silver paint on the underside which is correct. The Platter should also have a coat of hammerite on the underside and may still have the original line of felt on the bottom edge. The mat would have been made of rubber with raised lines emanating from the centre like a B&O deck but this has been replaced. The felt mat was a late 1970's performance upgrade and most owners, (including me) threw away the rubber version when the replacement became available. The double switch was only used on a few decks and was very quickly dropped for a neon lit red "side to side" rocker. This rocker switch was itself soon replaced with a square neon push switch as was on my first LP12. The bolts, springs and washers are original. The end of the spindle does look wrong but it might be "flash bounce" making it look different than it really is....As already sussed this LP12 would have been a "chassis only" unit and originally set into the cabinet of a "Stereogram", with amp and tuner etc as were many Garrard 401's at that time....The original LP12 lid was held up with a plastic stay and there was a corresponding slot for it to stand on the right hand side of the plinth.

2nd Hand Purchase:
ThomasOK (2009-04-14) Wrote:If possible find a deck with a serial number over 90582. This is when the Cirkus bearing and subchassis became standard equipment in 1993 and a little after the top plate stud was fitted in 1992 at serial number 88950...Enlarged corner braces on the plinth came at about 53000 and the improved motor bearing came at 79700. All the other upgrades after serial number 53000 (armboard, springs, grommets, etc.) are part of the Cirkus upgrade so you really wouldn't have to worry about them.

Motor Fault:
What You See and Hear (2012-09-17) Wrote:There is also known problem with some motor's made in and around 1989 due to incompatibility between the lubricant Linn use when finishing motor assembly with their machined pulley and bearing cap. This can result in the original manufacturers oil mixing with Linn's oil which results in the eventual formation when running of a black sludge which goes sticky increasing the friction and again preventing the Lingo from operating correctly. Any experienced Linn Retailer will be aware of this and take appropriate action. In our case we replace the motor with a new one as it's relatively cheap. There is a Linn motor flushing kit which was available to Retailers using a very nasty smelling solvent but I have never been confident it guarantees a complete solution to the problem. The only way to really know if the entire spindle and bearing journals are clean of sludge would be to dismantle the motor which is not possible. On top of this the time taken to do the rather vague task will likely cost almost as much as the motor itself so we always fit a new one.

US Motor/Pulley:
ThomasOK (2015-02-11) Wrote:It is also correct that you can't change the pulley, you have to change the entire motor assembly. This is not expensive running $170 in the US for either version. It is also improved from the original motor. You can't tell which one it is from the bottom. I believe if the bracket weren't there you would see that it says 50-60Hz and 250-300RPM.

If you are in the US the easiest way to tell is to look at the size of the pulley. The top of the 60Hz pulley is almost exactly the diameter of a US dime whereas the 50Hz pulley is almost exactly the diameter of a US nickel. Put a dime on top of a 50Hz pulley and it will be almost small enough to fall inside, but not quite.

Which pulley/motor you need depends on where you are and which power supply you have. If it is a basic power supply, as seems likely for this age of turntable, and you are in a 60Hz country like the US and Canada you would need the 60Hz motor/pulley. If you have a Valhalla power supply, indicated by a black power switch with a red LED in it, then you could need either a 60HZ or a 50Hz motor although 50Hz is more common. In the early days of the Valhalla, which synthesizes the frequency that drives the motor - as does the Lingo, Linn made 60Hz versions for North America so the motor would not need to be changed to update. After a few years they stopped making that version and only made the 50Hz style requiring North American LP12s have their motor changed when fitting the Valhalla. The Lingo has always been 50Hz only.

78RPM:
ThomasOK (2016-07-07) Wrote:Linn did indeed make at least a couple of special LP12s that would run at 78RPM. I believe that they consisted of a special larger pulley and a custom Lingo with not only a different oscillator but with the ability to vary the speed through a hole in the front panel. If I remember correctly one of them was made for a Linn rep in the US.

Bearing Oil:
What You See and Hear (2014-10-04) Wrote:The Axis uses the Linn black oil as used today in the LP12. The black oil was introduced before the Axis was launched into the marketplace. The only place Linn black oil is not advised is early LP12 bearings. specifically the gold coloured housing with a white liner.

Belt:
moog_man (2016-01-14) Wrote:Linn recently declared that the belt only needs to be replaced every decade now, so they are supplying one (with Cirkus kit) from now on.

Nuts and Washers:
Cymbiosis (2016-07-02) Wrote:In addition to noticing the change in the washers, I'm also pleased to say there has been an improvement in the locking nuts securing the three springs very recently. These have always been referred to as turret locknuts and have always been fairly difficult to move on the threads, which is as you would like it, as any nut movement is undesirable. I have received a new batch of these nuts in the last day or two and the latest nut is easily identified as it is quite different to look at, being more of a titanium colour than the more bright silver coloured originals. However, the main difference is; it grips the thread even more tightly than ever before which is fantastic!

Various Serial Numbers:
Analogue Addicts Linn LP12 FAQ Wrote:(dates and serial numbers are approximate)

1973 LP12 turntable introduced
[2,000] 1974, Main bearing liner changed, sub-chassis strengthened, motor control and mains switch changed
[23,000] 1978, Top plate modified (Linn claim Nirvana kit available this year)
[27,000] 1979, Lid and hinges changed
[31,826] 1981 February, Nirvana mechanical components
[38,794] 1982 May, Valhalla crystal driven electronic power supply made standard
[53,000] 1984, Enlarged plinth corner bracing
[54,101] 1984 June, sub-chassis strengthening bar epoxy glued instead of spot welded
[60,383] 1985 August, cap head screws on bearing housing
[61,090] 1985 September, diode modification to Valhalla
[n/a] 1985 December, strengthening blocks on corners of plinth
[n/a] 1986 Suspension springs improved
[n/a] 1986 May, new clear lid
[69,161] 1987 March, new formica and MDF armboard
[n/a] 1987 March, new bearing housing
[69,591] 1987 April, new springs
[70,000] 1987, Bearing improved with better lining material and tighter tolerances. Change to black oil. Suspension springs improved. Arm board composition improved
[79,160] New MDF armboard
[79,700] 1989, Motor thrust pad changed. Valhalla surge guard modification. PCB mains lead (UK)
[81,000] 1989, Harder suspension grommets fitted
[n/a] 1990, Lingo power supply available as add-on
[87,047] 1991, Valhalla with 45
[87,047] Motor thrust pad cap added to Lingo models
[87,206] Motor thrust pad cap added to Valhalla models
[87,672] Introduction of LP12 Basik, Trampolin available
[87,672] Solid base board replaces hardboard
[88,950] 1992, Improved top plate fixing
[90,582] 1993, Cirkus upgrade fitted as standard
[n/a] 2002, Maple plinth introduced adding to existing black, cherry, walnut, rosenut and afromasa options


PLINTHS
Manufacturers:
What You See and Hear (2010-05-30) Wrote:I think that Linn sourced Ben Dawson plinths around 18 months ago and have used them since. Before this Hornslet made them for a number of years and before them quite a few other companies.

Metal Corner Bracket (circa 2008):
Cymbiosis (2010-05-23) Wrote:Greaves of Sheffield never used anything like this with the older plinths as we all know and actually, the metal corner piece thing has only been introduced since Ben Dawson have been making the plinths.

David Williamson (2016-08-18) Wrote:The brackets are not there to hold the plinth together. The plinths we have today are far superior to plinths of old. They have a hidden biscuit joint as well as the corner bracing. The brackets are necessary for the product to pass very stringent safety house testing, in this case it is Canadian CSA.

When we did the Majik LP12, and mains power is being used within the product (rather than an external box like in Lingo, or Radikal) the structure of the plinth needs to have 'mechanical means' of holding together. Glue is not considered enough, in case the product would be repeatedly subjected to humidity, and heat which in their eye may then open up the product such that the mains would be exposed and dangerous. However many of the 3rd party upgrades on the market do not test to the same standards as we have to. This can be because the product is sold as an upgrade, and therefore falls into a different category for the safety approval. Valhalla/Hercules is an example of this - it would not pass safety now, if sold in an LP12 (and hence why we no longer do Valhalla), but is OK if you fit it as an aftermarket upgrade.

40th Anniversary:
Linn Website (2013-09-21) Wrote:To mark our 40th anniversary, Linn has joined forces with Highland Park, home of the best spirit in the world, to form a unique collaboration that will stimulate the senses of music and whisky lovers alike. We've combined this expertise to create forty Limited Edition Sondek LP12s — Linn’s highest performance turntable — encased in a beautiful whisky wood plinth, made from the solid oak casks in which Highland Park was matured."

25th Anniversary:
What You See and Hear (2010-05-30) Wrote:All Linn source and amplification products made at the time had a silver coloured coin fitted in celebration. In the case of your LP12 its inset into the plinth at the rear. As well as this the top plate has a copy of Ivor's signature etched on as described. There is no difference whatsoever in your LP12 and ones made either side of the Anniversaries production. However they are quite sought after and are worth more than a "standard" deck of the time. I have seen a couple come up at auction and there was fierce bidding leading to a much higher final price. It's nice to have something a little special, even if it is just cosmetic and makes no difference to the sound.

Black Gloss Finish:
What You See and Hear (2010-05-30) Wrote:During this period there were also a small number made and offered to some Retailers with a Black Piano gloss finish. We rejected ours at the time as it would have been a finger print magnet for an LP12 on demonstration. Also,on the sample sent the edge around the arm-board hole was not finished well , as the polishing could not include the inside edge.

4-Side Fluting:
What You See and Hear (2010-12-28) Wrote:My first LP12 was bought in 1977 in afromosia and it had the lid with stay and also the support slot in the right hand side. It's a long time ago but I think by that time flutes on all four sides had long gone and LP12's had a proper rear label around 5" by 1.5" with serial number which could not be fitted to the early all fluted version. Also the new hinge back-plates introduced a little later for the spring-hinges would have been difficult to fit as they fouled the slots.

New Cross-member:
Cymbiosis (2011-08-09) Wrote:...for about the last two years the Linn plinth have had a slight change which means the older longer cross-members foul on the top plate supports either side of the blocks. Initially the new plinths were modified in advance of the new cross-member becoming available.

Machined From Solid Aluminium:
David Williamson (2016-07-12) Wrote:We did that at the same time we developed the Ekos SE, and the Keel. So about 9 years ago. I had 4 of them built, with different amounts of aluminium machined away. Ivor was gifted one for one of his birthdays (65th I think), and I still have 3 in my possession. We didn't feel the improvement was worth the money as an upgrade, and there was bigger bang for buck to be had elsewhere. It did do something interesting, and sounded different, but perhaps not better.


TRAMPOLIN
Plinth Fitting:
ThomasOK(2009-03-23) Wrote:A number of older LP12s had a plinths with a slightly smaller cutout for the baseboard to fit into. These are mostly the oldest of plinths and the Trampolin will not fit these without modification. There are two ways to remedy this without changing the plinth: trim down the Trampolin or trim the plinth itself. I prefer the latter as the Trampolin 2, being made of aluminium is more difficult to trim. To trim the plinth you have to shave a bit off the inside where the baseboard fits in using something like a plane or rotary grinding tool. It is not that difficult and I have done this a number of times. You also have to drill the extra holes for mounting the Trampolin as previously noted.

Version 1 vs Version 2:
pdcman (2016-01-21) Wrote:There are two variants of the Trampolin models, the first one was made out of some sort of fibreglass/board, and was quite flexible. The Trampolin 2 (Tramp 2) is the latest version made from aluminium, very stiff, and has an additional earth lead which must be fitted to the cross member bolt. This version is the best as far as sound quality goes.
Cymbiosis (2016-01-21) Wrote:The T2 benefits in addition to the above 10 screw fixing points to really make everything rigid and importantly rattle free.


CIRKUS KIT
Parts:
Cymbiosis (2009-12-18) Wrote:Bearing...Inner platter and spindle...Cirkus subchassis...a new arm board, springs, top and bottom bushes, oil, a new chassis earth wire and two drive belts.

Parts (Revised):
ThomasOK (2016-05-02) Wrote:What is included in the Cirkus kit is now the Inner Platter/spindle, the bearing housing, the bolts for it, springs, upper and lower grommets, a vial of oil, a ground wire and a belt. A subchassis and armboard is no longer included. This is partly at the request of the dealers since Linn now has three subchassis and a number of customers choose to upgrade the subchassis at the time they have a Cirkus installed. This way they can choose which subchassis they want.

Identifying Cirkus:
What You See and Hear (2009-08-06) Wrote:Before the housing is capped and the deck turned over on the jig for further inspection there is an easy way to tell, even to the untrained eye. The bearing housing is fixed to the chassis with three bolts. Up until Cirkus these were black "japaned "or "blued" steel. The Cirkus, however uses three high tensile stainless steel bolts. Its unlikely that an earlier bearing will have these and in over 30 years of LP12 refurbishing I have not yet come across a "masquerade". Obviously an inspection of the housing from underneath will tell the full story but if the bolts are shiny stainless steel then it's almost certain to be a Cirkus and if black definitely not a Cirkus.

What You See and Hear (2009-08-18) Wrote:The liners on Cirkus are black. The bearing liners on earlier LP12s and also the Axis were made of white PTFE.From 1987 the liners were made from a much harder thermoplastic called PEEK. In the trade i'ts known as the Black Liner bearing.This black PEEK liner has carried through to today including the Cirkus which was introduced in 1993.On a Cirkus the inner platter and spindle dimensions are the same as before but the bearing housing changed. It is slightly taller allowing the oil charge to completely cover the top edge of the top PEEK liner.The most obvious change is that the flange connecting the face of the cylinder to the chassis is very much enlarged and massive with a 45 degree slope on the side .......Also the Cirkus is attached to the chassis with three stainless steel allen bolts instead of the black bolts used before.These can be seen from above by removing the inner platter and looking through the hole in the top plate. They are partly obscured but its obvious whether they are stainless or plain black steel.

Tweaks:
David Williamson (2017-06-16) Wrote:We did make a few tweaks 2 -3 years ago, which did improve the accuracy a little. Basically the the original bearing liners were molded (before being fitted, and re-machined inside the bearing). We changed them to being machined parts, because could get more consistent accurate parts doing it that way. The other change that was made was the machining of the bearings was moved to a different lathe, with different tools, to get greater accuracy.


NIRVANA KIT
Parts:
Quote:This consisted of 1 new spring kit (3 springs and 6 grommets), 3 large locknuts, 6 small locknuts, 5 black chassis bolts, 2 motor mounting screws, domes, and nuts allowing it to be positioned with better accuracy. 1 motor thrust bearing kit (endcap, spring, ball bearing). 1 new drive belt. The springs changed from zinc coloured to black.


RADIKAL
Dynamik PSU Upgrade:
DanielE (2011-03-08) Wrote:The Dynamik for Radikal is a new design that has only just been completed. It is in a different form factor to the ones used in the DS, this one is long and thin...What has previously been referred to as the small Dynamik is a supply that is designed for use in products that use both Analogue and Digital circuits, and consequently has separate analogue and digital supply rails. This supply is designed for use in products that only require analogue power rails, as is the current supply for the Radikal/Urika/Uphorik.

Klimax Radikal PSU:
The Klimax Radikal was first shipped with the Dynamik PSU a few months before the new PSU was officially released...
DanielE (2011-03-09) Wrote:The first Radikal in a machined chassis to be built with the Dynamik was built on the 17th November (2010), with the serial number 1251600.

Akurate Casework:
Linn launched new Akurate casework in Oct 2010 to distinguish between the Akurate from Majik product lines. In April 2011, the Akurate Radikal and Uphorik casework was also updated.
Linn Website (2011-04-27) Wrote:...have also been updated with the stunning new enclosure first introduced with the new Akurate System...Dynamik upgrades are available for all existing Radikal and Uphorik owners

Right-angle Connector for Naim Fraim:
Cymbiosis (2012-01-16) Wrote:I managed to get this change accepted/permission granted by HQ a few years ago now and not long after the launch of the Radikal as no soldering is involved, and so it's not a "modification" rather an external adaptation...The right-angled plugs you need to use are Neutrik, as the plug as fitted by Linn is a Neutrik too, and fortunately/consequently the internals are the same, and most importantly as I said above, no de-soldering and re-soldering of wires is required.


LINGO
ThomasOK (2009-05-07) Wrote:In February 2001 at serial number 614522 Linn changed to the full size LK box for the Lingo but the internal circuitry stayed the same. I don't believe anyone claims that this represented any musical improvement, it was just a change in case size. I think it might be best if we all started calling it the Lingo 1.2! In October 2001 at serial number 656968 Linn introduced the Lingo with a new circuit board using surface mount components instead of through-hole types. While the circuit and layout were basically the same there was definitely a noticeable musical improvement.

Versions:
Warren (2009-12-11) Wrote:Linn don't refer to the Lingos as the Lingo 1 and the Lingo 2 as they have made so many changes to the Lingo over the years. This was explained to me by my Linn factory tour guide in 2008.

Motor Incompatibility:
What You See and Hear (2012-09-17) Wrote:Linn have used the same Phillips motor design over the LP12's life but there are differences in the units over the 40 year period. Originally made by Phillips they were later made by other companies to the design spec under license and the code letters on the unit are important as they identify type and date. An MB10 motor is unsuitable for use with a Lingo and should be changed to a new unit. The reason is that the MB10 version has higher internal friction and the Lingo which runs at low torque compared to a Valhalla will not work at optimum efficiency as the load sensing circuit will be constantly trying to compensate. The latest motor has a better machined pulley and also has low internal friction plus a factory fitted low friction bearing cap which cuts down on the "spindle float" which an old motor will have to a certain extent when the original bearing cap is removed for use with Lingo.

PCB:
What You See and Hear (2016-01-03) Wrote:The PCB inside the LP12 had a couple of mods over the years on the socket for the switch and the screw connector for the motor wires but these are not relevant to performance as it's just a connection board with printed tracks and carries no electronic components. The switch is the same throughout production of the Lingo but the long umbilical with the plug from the PCB to the Lingo box has a better shielded jacket on the Lingo 2, and is slightly thicker and stiffer than on early Lingo's. This cuts down any electrical noise that might get through to the arm lead as they are in near proximity around the P-clip.


VALHALLA
45RPM Version:
Briain (2013-01-19) Wrote:I think it was only ever made as a batch of prototypes. I remember one of them appearing in Russ Andrews HiFi in Edinburgh, many years ago; in fact, I know who still has it fitted to their LP12.
CJ1045 (2013-01-19) Wrote:Yes, we briefly had one at Krescendo - we did post some pics on the forum here about 2 years ago.

US 60Hz Version with 60Hz Motor:
ThomasOK 2014-09-24 Wrote:There were a number of 60Hz Valhallas made as upgrades for the US. So the correct answer is that you need the right motor for the Valhalla installed and the frequency coming out of the wall makes no difference. It is true that most Valhallas and matching motors are 50Hz.


KEEL
Compatible Arms:
What You See and Hear (2010-11-2) Wrote:The Keel will fit Ittok LV2, LV3 MK1, LV3 MK2, Ekos 1 and 2, and Ekos SE. For the Ittok LV2 and LV3 Mk1 the Keel has a place machined in for the arm rest and it's simple for a retailer to drill out. The hole is then filled with a push in plastic plug if the arm is upgraded later. The Project, Basik LVV, LVX, Basik Plus, Akito 1, 2 and 3 will not fit as the cueing system will foul the collar on the armboard. As discussed both here and on the Naim forum the Naim ARO keel is out of production, but if 20 firm orders are given to retailers worldwide a new batch can be made.
...It's certain that the cueing system was removed for the demonstration so an Akito could be used if the cueing lever is removed.

Pre-production example:
What You See and Hear (2013-09-23) Wrote:The Keel was actually a prototype that had somehow got into the food chain. The bearing housing point was different in that it had extra tapped holes and slightly different machining to allow for some sort of strengthening collar at the base of the bearing housing. I asked David about this and was told that the item he had purchased preceded the production Keel and that the best sound was from the final item which was also made of a different alloy. The collar system was rejected after auditioning.


EKOS SE
Bias Correction:
Linn Helpline (2016-06-15) Wrote:The anti-skate was changed on the Ekos SE tonearm to increase the force being applied for a given weight from serial number 11064. To fine tune the anti-skate dial, it is best to listen to the performance after each adjustment, although we would suggest starting with 2.0g for the Akiva cartridge.
What You See and Hear (2009-12-09) Wrote:David Williamson recently introduced a change to production of the Ekos SE. This gives superior musical performance by having stronger bias than Linn previously used. On a standard Ekos or an Earlier Ekos SE it's worth trying the bias scale at 2.2 gm against a tracking weight of 1.7-1.8

Black T-Kable (Mogami W2549 balanced microphone wire):
Dr_Eddie (Posted 2011-04-08) Wrote:As I understand it the SE comes with very high quality Japanese Microphone cable called Mogami. It is Black with the new Linn plug at the base of the arm pillar. It replaces the old T cable.

Ekos SE/1:
davidw (2012-06-11) Wrote:Just to let you all know we have given the Ekos SE a wee facelift. The headshell has been made a little longer (2mm) to make it easier to fit cartridges. We have also removed the paint and plating from the operating housing and antiskate dial, to make the arm all silver. This was how I had originally intended it to look. It is not a performance enhancement.
ThomasOK (2012-08-16) Wrote:The SE/1s I've installed so far have come with RCAs.

Heavier counterweight:
davidw (2012-06-11) Wrote:At the same time a new heavier counterweight will be available for those of you using heavy cartridges. It weighs 40g more then the standard one.


EKOS
Cymbiosis (2009-03-26) Wrote:The Ekos 2 started with serial Nos above 6200 so all numbers above are going to be Ekos 2's. However, with serial Nos below 6200 but claiming to be upgraded to Ekos 2's, it's best to ask your dealer.

Upgrade:
What You See and Hear (2012-02-25) Wrote:While the Ekos was in production you could have it "upgraded" to MK 2 spec. This used to cost around £500.00 and the main assembly (Pillar, Gimbal Block, Arm tube and Headshell) was scrapped and replaced with new. This afforded the user greater performance as the replacement item was mechanically stronger. This "MK2" update was phased out as the Ekos Arm production ceased with the introduction of the obviously very different and much more expensive Ekos SE ... The reason you could get a new assembly so cheaply was that Linn could scrap the old one but transfer the serial number to the new assembly and it was effectively the same as seen by the taxman.

Identification:
What You See and Hear (2015-05-12) Wrote:It (Silver dot as opposed to Red dot) does "indicate" it's a MK11 spec arm. However I recall having a deck here once where the tracking weight registration dot was missing and I replaced it with a silver version (also sometimes called white dot). This was only because the red one was no longer available. I don't recall whether this was a MK1 or MK11 arm but its still out there somewhere.

Beyond that "rogue" sample I would say that generally an arm with the silver dot is either a late Ekos in the 8000-10,000 S/No range or an older MK1 arm that was sent to Linn for upgrade to MK11 spec during the time these late arms were produced.

Linn ran out of the plastic red bead dots at this time and went over to a silver aluminium version.The Ekos was introduced in 1988 starting at about S/No 1100 for some reason and I guess the red dot was changed to silver at around S/No 8000 or later in the early 2000's. Any arms upgraded to MK11 during this late period would have a silver dot as well right up until the arm was discontinued and replaced by the Ekos SE.

As already stated a slotted pillar indicates a MK 1 whereas a smooth pillar is MK2. But there are a small number of very early MK11 arms with a slotted pillar so nothing is quite so simple as it seems.


ITTOK
HBerg (2008-12-21) Wrote:There is nothing officially from Linn with the designation Ittok LVII mark 1 or 2, but people call the Ittok with the 20mm pillar for mark 1 and the 25 mm pillar for mark 2. All Ittok's after S/N 3000 have 25mm pillar, i.e. mark 2 (unofficially). Arms with S/N after 31300 are Ittok LVIII

LVIII Mk2:
What You See and Hear (2010-06-21) Wrote:The LV3 MK2 was only available for a short time compared to the rest and is a little better than the LV3 as it has a slightly longer arm tube and a much stronger,shorter head-shell akin to the Ekos.

12" Ittok:
What You See and Hear (2009-12-3) Wrote:A Batch of 12" Ittok arms was commissioned from Japan...The 12" arm was made to replay acetates on the modified Scully lathe used for cutting...As with everything unusual 12" Ittoks command much higher prices in the marketplace than the 9" version due to their rarity.

Black Ittok:
What You See and Hear (Posted 2010-2-7) Wrote:One of a hand-full made by Linn and I believe assembled in Scotland. The arm was prototyped with higher quality ball-races and some other changes, possibly different and better ground shafts as I remember it being the best LP12 I had heard at the time. Subsequently changes were made in production to improve the Ittok's performance and the black finish was available for a premium. I think it was 15% or so above the silver price. The black arm was less popular as many people preferred silver, including myself. I have a black Ittok in my collection which has the best bearings I have ever come across outside of an SE and wonder if it is one of the "specials" but I cannot find a record of the serial numbers of the select few.
smokestack (Posted 2016-10-26) Wrote:With regard to the performance of the black arms , as indicated, the initial non production Black Ittoks as I recall were improved spec prototypes, performing better than the then current silver production arm. The improvements were subsequently incorporated into both the silver & black production arms, which both then performed to the same improved spec.

Two-piece Counterweight:
What You See and Hear (2010-2-7) Wrote:Regarding the counterweight the arm had a two piece item for some years which was a very expensive item to make as both parts fitted like a glove. The idea was to take off the small ring if you had a light cartridge but in reality it was never done as most people used Linn cartridges. Later the two piece was discontinued an replaced with a one piece costing half as much. It probably made no difference in sound but many people bought the one piece to keep the arm up to date and for the peace of mind it gave. This means that it is a mistake to assume that an arm with a one piece weight is newer.


AKITO
Akito 1 Bearings:
Cymbiosis (2010-09-19) Wrote:Early, Japanese built Akitos can suffer from high friction (notchy) bearings, particularly in the lateral plane.

Differences between 1 and 2B:
What You See and Hear (2009-12-06) Wrote:The MK 1 Akito uses ball races in both planes. These are not adjustable and because the Akito was modestly priced, the quality, integrity and factory "set" is of a much lower standard than the Ittok. The MK 2 Akito is a different animal and is assembled in the UK to a different standard and price. The MK 1 Akito often has stiff and notch bearings and often show poor tracking ability and even "the record's stuck". They are often consigned to the bin and replaced.

Akito 2B:
davidw (2009-07-03) Wrote:The Linn produced Akito was launched in December 1994, and was serial no. 100,000.

Aktio 3 (2010):
What You See and Hear (2010-05-05) Wrote:This arm has a new bearing housing with a machined, rather than cast yoke and I thought it sounded superb as well as having noticeably free bearings...Apparently this happened a year ago and is a production change.
davidw (2010-05-06) Wrote:We now machine the yoke, main body and counterbalance stub. The last two are glued together in a similar manner to the Ekos SE. They are machined to a tighter tolerance, and will be free from porosity.
davidw (2015-02-25) Wrote:The serial number which we made the change to the machined form solid yoke, main body and counterbalance stub (/3 version) was 1185704

Silver T-Kable as standard (with new Linn DN plug):
What You See and Hear (2010-10-07) Wrote:Linn have just released a new T-Kable with an arm plug which looks similar to the one used on the first Ekos. This has a Linn logo and echoes the look of the bottom of the Radikal motor. The plug is compact so as not to touch the baseboard and rest of the cable is the same, so it's not an upgrade but does look very nice. What's exciting is that it now comes with the Akito. The inclusion of a T-Kable makes this excellent arm even more of a bargain.


PROJECT 9cc
Rock'n'Roll (2010-11-24) Wrote:If anyone hasn't spotted it yet, Majik LP12 comes with new Linn phono cable. It looks very similar with Black Analogue Interconnect. It is easy to attach and align correctly with the P.Clip. On the tonearm end it uses black 5-pin DIN plug previously used on Silver T-Kable (new silvers come with beautifully made Linn 5-pin DIN plug). On the preamplifier end it uses classic Elka RCA plugs as on Black Analogue. Apart from its looks and build quality it also offers better sound. Well done Linn!
Rock'n'Roll (2012-01-12) Wrote:Pro-Ject tonearm has upgraded bearings.

Lid Clearance:
What You See and Hear (2011-04-19) Wrote:As already said a new "Majik LP12 Lid Kit" will fit. This kit includes hinges and back plates for the plinth and the now standard LP12 lid is a few mm higher to clear the top of the Project arm.

Purchasing:
David Williamson (2014-03-26) Wrote:Although we use a 9cc on the Majik LP12, there are a few subtle tweaks to it to make it fit properly...
  • The height of the arm (the clip on the operating housing)
  • The lift lower
  • The counter balance weight
  • The height of the mounting collar

So it is not quite as easy as buying an off the shelf 9cc.
ThomasOK (2014-03-26) Wrote:Note also that the standard 9cc can come with different terminations whereas the Linn version has a 5 pin din socket and includes a Linn Black cable. All things considered I think it would be wisest to seek a unit that has been traded into a Linn dealer as you would have all the right stuff.


NAIM ARO
Blue Anodised:
What You See and Hear (2009-09-07) Wrote:This was one of the origional test production batch of 4 arms made for Naim and assembled by Guy Lamotte to confirm standards before full production. The only diference to final output was the absence of the outrigger sliding azimuth weight. This was not necessary on a well set up LP12 with the Troika as the mass and centre of gravity did not warrant adjustment on their LP12's. Instead of the sliding weight there is a small optional fixed anodised brass weight.


GRACE 707
What You See and Hear (2010-09-19) Wrote:Linn imported the 707 as it was superior to anything else they looked at at the time but of course Linn knew all of its obvious mechanical shortcomings and this is why they soon made the Ittok...The Grace was designed in the early 1970's and is quite rigid for its time, but quite "bendy" by later standards. The headshell is made of plastic and the Pillar consists of a series of sliding cylinders like a car aerial. It was a very expensive arm and originally designed to play CD4 quadraphonic LP's. Where most of the money went was the superb "cup and cone" low friction bearings. These days you may find that these bearings are now loose and chattery and that the plastic headshell has started to fracture underneath, where a past owner has overtightened the tiny brass grub screw holding the Headshell onto the arm tube.


REGA 303
David Williamson (2016-03-21) Wrote:We have tested a Rega 303 on an LP12, it doesn't even come close to the Project 9cc, let alone the Akito. It was setup with the same deck, power supply cartridge etc. - straight shootout. It just doesn't work.


CARTRIDGE HISTORY
Timeline might not be 100% correct.

Moving Coil:
  • Supex 900D
  • Linn Asak (Supex)
  • Linn Trak (Supex) - limited quantity sell off due to poor quality
  • Linn Asaka (Supex)
  • Linn Asak T (Supex) - with post production improvements at Linn
  • Linn Karma (Supex)
  • Linn Troika, top-of-range (Supex)
  • Linn Arkiv, top-of-range (Scantech)
  • Linn Arkiv B, top-of-range (Scantech)
  • Linn Klyde, midrange (Armour [Goldring])
  • Linn Metak (Audio Technica) - didn't meet Linn standards but a batch were sold off
  • Linn Akiva, top-of-range (Scantech)
  • Linn Kandid, top-of-range (Scantech)
  • Linn Krystal, midrange (Armour [Goldring])

Moving Magnet:
  • Linn K9, midrange (Audio Technica)
  • Linn K18 and K18/2, top-of-range (Audio Technica)
  • Linn K5, budget (Audio Technica)
  • Linn Basik, ultra-budget (Audio Technica)
  • Linn Adikt, top-of-range (Armour [Goldring])


KANDID MC
Manufacture:
David Williamson (2013-03-20) Wrote:It has been a very long time in development, and is a testament to the relationship we have with Lyra.


AKIVA MC
ThomasOK (2011-01-20) Wrote:There has been a change to the mounting of the diamond although I'm not sure exactly when it started production. Newer Akivas have a small, flat, roughly rectangular piece of material (it looks likely to be boron as well) fitted around the diamond which contacts the flattened part of the cantilever mentioned above...This extra piece was not on the earlier ones.
ThomasOK (2012-08-20) Wrote:Linn does make running changes to the Akiva just like they do to other products and there have been four different configurations to the mounting of the diamond to the cantilever that I know of. Obviously other changes could have been made that were not visible.


ARKIV MC
Differences between A and B:
ThomasOK (2008-09-03) Wrote:If you have the cartridge in hand the best way is just to look at the stylus. If the cantilever is Aluminum (silver colored) it is an A if it is Boron (charcoal colored) it is a B.


KRYSTAL MC
Design and Manufacture (note that Armour Home own Goldring):
David Williamson (2015-12-14) Wrote:It is a Linn design, manufactured by Armour - who currently make the Kylde.


KLYDE MC
What You See and Hear (2012-01-20) Wrote:The Klyde has got better over its production life and the latest are much better than those from 20 or even 10 years ago. There is no obvious visual difference between a new one and one from 1992 but I think the latest Klyde's sound cleaner and more detailed. Old ones tend to sound a bit thick and dull as with most cartridges.


METEK MC
What You See and Hear (2009-11-19) Wrote:Audio Technica made batch of Metaks for evaluation but Linn felt it did not pass muster at the estimated cost .The Klyde was better and not much more expensive. I believe the Metak had Audio Technica's removable stylus which is possibly unique for an MC. Linn sometimes unearth products that have been filed in error or put on a palette in their automated warehouse and they found the batch around 5 years ago. I was offered them but by the time I made up my mind they had all gone. One buyer abroad had snapped up the lot. The Metak may also have had variability which would have precluded a go ahead.


ASAK/ASAK T
Salamonscream (2013-12-16) Wrote:Linn first m/c cartridge was the Asak. The Asak T was a top quality Asak modded to improve the rigidity of the generator assembly, and was available at the same time as the Asak. The Asaka was a Asak in a metal Karma style body and came out at the same time as the Karma.


ASAKA
Salamonscream (2013-12-16) Wrote:The Asaka was a Asak in a metal Karma style body and came out at the same time as the Karma.


TRAK MC
What You See and Hear (2012-09-10) Wrote:The Linn Trak was basically an Asak that fell short of the build and alignment spec and so Linn sold it at around half the price rather than reject to the bin. The Trak was sold with a dark blue body and missing the front red inset dot. This appears to be a Trak with the relevant hole where the red dot would be but in yellow.


ADIKT MM
David Williamson (2016-01-14) Wrote:There was a change made to the setup of the suspension on the Adikts - so that it rides a little higher, but is more consistent. It was done as a running change, and as part of our continuous improvement. The change was made around 9 months ago. We also had to change the stylus guard to be a little deeper (so if you were to fit an old guard to a new stylus they would touch.) No change to the performance of the cartridge.


K5, K9 and K18 MM
What You See and Hear (2009-11-19) Wrote:Audio Technica made the K5/K9 and K18 for Linn. The 18 had some problems and was often inferior to the 9 in performance. This was due to variability in compliance which was addressed when the K18/ 2 was released.


URIKA
New Arm Plug:
Mudcrutch (2011-05-03) Wrote:the best thing about the new one is the new Linn arm plug. So much better than the SME one.

Additional Cable Attachment Point:
ThomasOK (2011-05-03) Wrote:Of course the new plug is the most obvious and significant improvement. And the Urika has always had the "slots" for cable management. But early on several dealers found there was a musical improvement to be had by separating the power cable to the Urika from the interconnects. In Tony's photos you can see the extra cable tie attachment point that I installed on the Trampolin allowing the Urika power cable to be routed out the old tonearm cable hole. What I discovered on the very latest Urika is that Linn now welds an additional attachment point onto the Urika Trampolin near where I attached the extra one - tacitly acknowledging the advantage of keeping the cables separate.


UPHORIK
Akurate Casework and Dynamik PSU:
Linn launched new Akurate casework in Oct 2010 to distinguish between the Akurate from Majik product lines. In April 2011, the Akurate Radikal and Uphorik casework was also updated and Dynamik PSU fitted as standard.
Linn Website (2011-04-27) Wrote:...have also been updated with the stunning new enclosure first introduced with the new Akurate System...Dynamik upgrades are available for all existing Radikal and Uphorik owners...Linn engineers have adapted Dynamik technology to drive Radikal and Uphorik, bringing the 6th generation of a legendary power supply design to vinyl fans everywhere.


LINTO
What You See and Hear (2014-01-14) Wrote:The Linto was introduced in April 1997. A small production change, (not performance related) was made a few months later in August 1997 at s/no 1592. The Linto then carried on unchanged for another 13 years until March 2010 when it was replaced by the Uphorik.


SOURCE (DIGITAL):

KLIMAX DS
Dynamik PSU: Serial numbers prior to 1189823 need to be returned to Linn for re-machining the casework.

New Audio Board (KDS/1): Serial numbers prior to 1189823 need to be returned to Linn for re-machining the casework.

Power Switch Moved (retained KDS/1 name):
Gonzo (2013-12-08) Wrote:The latest Klimax units had the power switch moved to the front of the unit from the back. I don't believe there was any performance change, it was just to comply with latest regulations. A unit described as KDS/1 could be latest spec with the switch at the front or back.

Improved Clocking (KDS/2, AKA KDS/E because it includes Exakt outputs):
Linn Website (2015-03-17) Wrote:We've also launched a new Klimax DS, Akurate DS, Majik DS and Majik DSM, delivering an even higher performance than ever before. New clocking architecture and improved audio circuitry layouts have led to a reduction of components, shorter signal paths and reduced jitter, meaning you can enjoy the best performance.


MAJIK DSi / MAJIK DSM
There are 5 versions to date (March 2017): -
1. MDSi (no HDMI)
2. MDSM (same as 1, just re-badged)
3. MDSM +HDMI
4. MDSM +Exakt links and improved clocking/circuit layout
5. MDSM +HDMI 2.0

Exakt Variant with improved clocking:
Linn Website (2015-03-17) Wrote:We’ve also launched a new Klimax DS, Akurate DS, Majik DS and Majik DSM, delivering an even higher performance than ever before. New clocking architecture and improved audio circuitry layouts have led to a reduction of components, shorter signal paths and reduced jitter, meaning you can enjoy the best performance.

We’ve also included Exakt links on these new Linn DS players, future proofing your system and letting you relax safe in the knowledge that you can upgrade to the ultimate performance of Exakt at any time.


PRE-AMPLIFIERS:

KLIMAX KONTROL
New Dual-Mono Audio Board: Upgraded units are often referred to as Klimax Kontrol/1 or KK/1. It was fitted as standard on units manufactured Sept 2008 onwards (approximately serial number 1168755 onwards). It should have sticker underneath stating 'KONTROL/UPG' plus the serial number beneath. Alternatively, inside the unit there will be two volume control chips instead of just one. I am not sure there is a clean cut-off serial number for this upgrade. It has been suggested that to me that some upgraded units were manufactured for dealer demonstration prior to the original model ceasing. Nothing confirmed by Linn though.

Power Switch Added: Units labelled Klimax Kontrol/2 are fitted with a power on/off switch. There has been no mention on the forum that this change represents either a performance upgrade or downgrade.


POWER AMPLIFIERS:

KLIMAX SOLOS
Standby Time:
Music Lover (2012-09-29) Wrote:Based on my information, Linn made a change in July -99 (at serial number 1223) from 10 to 20 min standby time.

PSU Modification:
Music Lover (2012-09-29) Wrote:in November 1999 a small modification was made in the PSU (at serial 1675). I know a few of the very early units ran hot, so can be related to that. Normally no problem with this, so possibly a precautionary measure. Linn reports "no performance differences".

Dynamik PSU:
Whizz (2011-05-21) Wrote:Very early solos have to undergo more extensive machining...This applies to amps before s/n 657850
DanielE (2011-05-21) Wrote:When the Klimax Twin was designed, the Klimax Solo chassis was updated to allow more space for the Power supply. Unfortunately, no matter how hard we tried we coulnd't get the required componentry to fit within the confines of the original Solo chassis, so the earlier units need machining to match the Klimax Twin, and later Solos.


AKURATE/CHAKRA x200 POWER AMPLIFIERS
Unlike other components in the Akurate range, the new Akurate power amplifiers launched in 2010 included new casework only, according to Linn, "Akurate Power Amplifiers receive an aesthetic and acoustic enhancement with the new enclosure"

Chakra x200 Internal Links Added:
sunbeamgls (2012-09-10) Wrote:Internal links in Chakras were added during the second half of 2005. I have a C6100 that has one board with links (stamped Dec 2005), the other without (stamped July 2005), so pretty much everything from Jan 2006 onwards is likely to have links, but you need to check.


LOUDSPEAKERS:

AKURATE 242s
Linn modified the bass crossover shortly after release leading some people thinking there are 3 versions (which is true, although only two official ones), but I have no serial number for this initial modification.

Mk1 Modification:
Philbo (2010-10-14) Wrote:During the lifetime of the mk1 242s a change was made to the internal connectors used to link the cable harnesses to the crossovers.

Mk2:
Whizz (2009-03-08) Wrote:THIS CHANGE WAS IMPLEMENTED FROM s/n 1144285
Philbo (2009-07-22) Wrote:The change to the 242s in 2007 was due to some components going end-of-life from our suppliers. The work was done to ensure we could continue selling the Akurate speaker range and was never actually called an 'upgrade' but rather an update. The changes were to the 3K Array (which also changed in the Artikulat when we re-designed it to become Klimax) and the bass drivers. To achieve this we also changed the passive crossovers, aktiv crossovers and port lengths. Due to the extent of the changes (all but the cabinet and stand) we never offered an 'upgrade' as this would essentially require re-building the speakers from scratch here at Linn HQ, a rather expensive upgrade...

Upgraded Stands:
Philbo (2011-09-19) Wrote:The upgrade stands do fit the original (MkI) speaker and are a worthwhile upgrade.

Aktiv cards:
chrisbridgeave (2010-10-16) Wrote:I asked a dealer very recently and he, helpfully, replied as follows:
AKURATE 242 Mark 1, used with aktive cards; CHAKT01, CHAKT02, CHAKT03, CHAKT04, CHAKT05
AKURATE 242 sn after 1144285 are Mark 2 and aktive cards CHAKT57, CHAKT58, CHAKT59, CHAKT60, CHAKT61


AKURATE 212s
Mk2: Upgrade took affect from the same serial number as the 242s, so 1144285 onwards.
Philbo (2012-07-19) Wrote:...changes were to all of the drive units (new array specification and new bass driver) and crossovers. As I recall I left the port length unchanged in the 212.
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2009-06-18, 20:49 (This post was last modified: 2016-08-24 19:12 by charlie1.)
Post: #6
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
Anyone know from which serial number the 212 mark 2 began?
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2009-06-19, 08:33 (This post was last modified: 2013-09-23 13:25 by charlie1.)
Post: #7
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
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2009-06-20, 19:20
Post: #8
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
hi all,

does anyone have this info for the linn kremlin? what serial numbers indicate which power supply is inside? standard? brilliant? slim-line brilliant?

thanks,

doug s.
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2009-07-10, 04:23
Post: #9
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
doug s. Wrote:hi all,

does anyone have this info for the linn kremlin? what serial numbers indicate which power supply is inside? standard? brilliant? slim-line brilliant?

thanks,

doug s.

Kremlin PS upgrades:

Brilliant power supply fitted at serial number 1000 in July 1994
Brilliant enhancement fitted at serial number 1055 in Oct. 1994
Slimline power supply fitted at serial number 2000 in Feb. 1996

Before anyone asks, I don't actually know what the Brilliant enhancement was. I would guess some mod to the Brilliant or the main board to make the Brilliant work better. It was claimed to further improve the sound.

LP12SE Movingui • KRadikal • Kandid • Urika • Kremlin • LS-NAS • KRDS • Lejonklou Sagatun Monos & Tundra Mono 2As • JBL 3677s & 4645C Sub • NOKTable • Harmoni Mimer/Tor Racks
AV: Pioneer BDP51 BluRay • Akurate Kontrol • 2 LK280 SPARK • 4 Isobarik DMS • 2 DQ1W

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Fine-tuning LP12s since 1978!
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2009-07-10, 07:01
Post: #10
RE: Linn Product Upgrade History: Years and Serial Numbers
The link does not work anymore.

LHB Wrote:Since I've got this URL on my clipboard I thought I'd post it. It's a history of factory upgrades to many major Linn products, when they took place (in terms of year and serial number) and what the upgrade involved. It's very useful if you're in the used market.

http://nornan.se/linnsite/

Main: KEDSM, 350's with 4 Tundra Stereos and Akurate Exakt Box 10, 520 rears, Oppo 203, Sky Q.
Office: Renew DS2 and 530s.
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