JE Labs collection of idler turntables

Cheaper alternatives to the Garrard 301/401 and Thorens TD124


Lenco L75 repainted in Hammertone Grey
4-layer 3/4" plywood laminate plinth
Audio Technica AT1007 + SME 3012
Made in Switzerland with high quality main bearing and motor. Very quiet once serviced and refined sounding. Earlier models were branded Bogen in the USA. 

But just like the Rek O Kuts, condition of the idler wheel is of paramount importance to ensure up to spec performance.

Top - idler wheel from L75 on
Bottom - idler wheel from Bogen B60-B62 (L70)

In my experience the later type idler wheel (top) is very durable and have never had to have them refurbished. However the earlier type with a plastic wheel (found in earlier Bogen B60-62 models like below) has always been problematic (hardens with age) and sent them out for resurfacing. 

Bogen B60 (L70) in original base
I have high regard for the tonearm that came with the L70/B60-B62.

Bogen B61 (L70) in 4-layer plywood plinth
Velvet Touch viscous damped tonearm
This is a very refined sounding turntable!

Lenco B55 + Rek O Kut Gyropoise arm
Lenco B55 (budget model) has a lighter platter but has interchangeable parts (idler wheel and motor) with the heavier platter models.

Bogen B50-16
Early budget model with light platter, no interchangeable parts with later models.

More info at Lenco Heaven

Rek O Kut

Rek O Kut L34 in laminated plywood plinth
SME 3012 + Excel 801
For those who want more pace, rhythm and drive, consider a Rek O Kut. Big torquey motors and larger diameter main bearing albeit not machined to the same standards of quality as a Thorens, Garrard or even a Lenco.

See my ROK tips page.

Rek O Kut L37 + SME 3012
Rek O Kut B12H + Pickering
10" Argonne + 9" Velvet Touch
This is the main front end in my mono system!

Rek O Kut + ROK S160

Japanese Idler Turntables

Fine contenders to Bogen/Lenco and Rek O Kut, if you can find them;)

Shield MO 19 (Neat OEM) + Gray 212
and Grace G540
Shield MO19 + Grace G540
Realistic MKVII + Gray clone

4-speed idler driven 10" turntable with eddy current pitch control...

Lafayette PK180 works, but more of a cool novelty item ;)


  1. JE: I recently saved a Neat Shield MO-19 from being thrown into a dumpster. I saw your archive and joined hope t gain some insight, input and possibly contacts with someone who could help me get this table running. I posted pics on the LH site under 'other turntables' section. LH is a great site with a wonderfully enthusiastic membership.


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