Reed 5T

Tangential Statement Laser Guided Tonearm

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The Reed 5A is a monumental achievement in high-performance audiophile tonearm design. Due to its tangential operation, it tracks accurately with a tracking error that is so low, it is for all intents and purposes inaudible. So why even consider making another tonearm model to sit above it?

The answer to this question comes from an unexpected direction. During their research, Reed discovered that rather than rely on the ‘pulling force’ of a record to guide the position of a tangential tonearm, there was a better way of doing it which promised to result in an even better sound.

Reed designed and built a limited rotation sectional torque motor that controlled the tonearm’s position by using a laser and linear sensor array. This way, the angular rotation of the tonearm was guided by extremely accurate electronic technology. This was the first time such a system had ever been applied to an audio application and to this day, remains the most sophisticated tonearm system in the world. Welcome to the world of the Reed 5T.

The Reed 5T is the fifth offering in the Reed range and is their statement tonearm. Like the 5A, the 5T is a tangentially tracking pivoted tonearm based on the Double Birch/Thales geometry (if the center of a triangle’s circumcircle lies on the triangle then the triangle is right, and the center of its circumcircle lies on its hypotenuse) and the rule, that given three non-collinear points, it is possible to draw only one circle that has finite radius and passes through all three. Below is a diagram showing the Double Birch/Thales geometry. A tonearm that follows this geometry is optimised for minimal tracking error.
Double Birch Thales geometry
Please note:

  • P1, O1, P3 – Thales’ semicircle
  • Angles P1-A1-P3, P1-A2-P3, P1-A3-P3 are 90 degrees each
  • Segments A1B1 = A2B2= A3B3 represent length of a tonearm
  • B – Tonearm vertical axis
  • P2 represents a center of circle, drawn through three points – B1,B2 and B3 (tonearm rotation axis)
  • P3 – Linear Sensor Array
  • BP3 – Laser beam

The arm tube suspension system is similar to one used in Reed 2G tonearm, and the tonearm’s turning part is based on low noise thrust-sleeve bearing. For angular rotation of the tonearm, Reed designed and built a limited rotation sectional torque motor. The tonearm’s position is controlled by laser and linear sensor array. The Reed 5T has a user-replaceable arm tube capability, which allows you to change tonearm’s effective mass yourself. The tonearm also has VTA and azimuth adjustments.

The Reed 5T has following advantages if compared with pivot tonearms:

  • A smaller moment of inertia
  • No need for any anti-skating mechanism
  • Max tracking error is +/- 5 Minute of Angle (MOA). Pivot tonearms usually have max tracking errors up to 1.5 degrees.

The Reed 5T’s advantages compared to other tangential tonearms are:

  • Few times smaller moment of inertia
  • No need for complicated additional devices (air compressor)
  • Compact and sleek design
  • Effective mass in both vertical and horizontal directions is similar

Reed 5T absolute tracking error
The Reed 5T is a no-compromise design suitable for ultimate level analogue systems. The laser & sensor array combined with the limited rotation sectional torque motor is a world first and takes this tonearm to an unprecedented level of performance. The engineering and execution is simply of an heirloom quality standard.

A tonearm has a critical & challenging role to play in an analogue system. The signal produced by the cartridge is very sensitive and prone to degradation by resonances and other phenomena. It has to transport that sensitive signal so that it maintains its integrity and has to keep the cartridge tracking as accurately as possible in the record grooves across the width of the whole record while contending with a myriad of forces that are working against it. It is one of the most influential and critical components in the signal chain and needs to be well conceived, well designed and well built.

The Reed 5T sits at the top of the pantheon of reference tonearms. It is so silent, with no discernable signature of its own, thereby releasing the music in the most truthful and realistic way. It sounds like having no tonearm at all, just a direct connection to the music without any equipment in the way. People who consider products at this level are searching for that incredible emotional connection that makes this effort worthwhile and the Reed 5T exists not only deliver that feeling, but to help you feel it with every fibre of your being.

Reed 5T Black Gold



First Installation of Reed 5T Tangential Tracking Tonearm in Singapore

Reed Muse 1C Turntable – Reed 5T Tangential Tracking Tonearm – Top Plattenspieler Gramofono

Reed Muse 1C plus Reed 5T

Finish Options

The pictures below are for the purposes of showing the finish options and the tonearm model may differ from the model described above.

Reed 5T Seashell WhiteSeashell White
Reed 5T BlackBlack
Reed 5T Gold MatteGold Matte

Armwand Options

Reed Macassar EbonyMacassar Ebony
Read Teak LightTeak Light
Reed Teak DarkTeak Dark

Product Specification

Model Reed 5T
Type Tangential – Pivot
Armwand Options Wenge, Macassar Ebony, Cocobolo, Teak Light, Teak Dark
Finish Options Seashell White, Black, Gold Matte
Mounting Distance 251mm (platter diameter max = 330mm)
Tracking Error ± 5 Minute of Angle (MOA)
Height Adjustment Compatible with 28-48mm high platters
VTA Adjustment Precision ±0.2mm
Azimuth Adjustment ±8°
Downforce Range 10÷30 mN (cartridge mass 5.5 g – 19.5 g,(4.0 g – 25,0 g))
Traction Limited rotation sectional torque motor
Voltage 12VDC, using battery powered power supply ‘Reed Source 12V’
Other Features Replaceable Headshell
Effective Mass Wenge: 10-14g
Makassar Ebony: 10-14g
Cocobolo: 12-18g
Teak Light: 8-14g
Teak Dark: 8-14g