As the last issue was being printed, we learned of the sad passing of Tom Fletcher, after a long illness. Best known for the Nottingham Analogue range of turntables and tonearms, Tom's friendly, modest, no-nonsense demeanour and his idiosyncratic - yet utterly successful - approach to turntable design came to epitomise all that can be considered best about the last 30 years of UK audio; well-made products at comparatively reasonable prices, that don't fall prey to six-monthly redesigns and that keep on going for years and years. Several years ago, Tom passed the Nottingham Analogue baton on to family and staff, but rather than taking early retirement, he went on to found Fletcher Audio in an effort to bring some of his later ideas to market.
Made in mainland Europe by engineers that Tom trusted (despite their serious character flaws of not being powered by mug upon mug of tea), the first UK samples of Fletcher Audio Omega Point turntables landed in the UK in the same week Tom Fletcher passed away. We have a review of a Fletcher Audio deck planned, but that review can't help be a little bittersweet, especially to someone who felt the Spacedeck was one of the best turntables in history.
At first glance, it might seem hard to reconcile turntable sales in the technology-driven world of 2011. But in reality, the old and the new sit very comfortably together. Just like the printed page and the Apple iPad. Which is why
Hi-Fi+ now comes in App form, so you can download your favourite audiophile magazine from the comfort of your own backlit touchscreen. Just type 'hi-fi' into the App Store search engine and follow the downloading instructions. You don't even need to join one of the iPad magazine shops to ring the changes.
What's more, we'll be showing off our new iPad app along with a full range of issues of
Hi-Fi+ past and present made out of real trees at this year's Sound & Vision Show, at the Marriott City Centre Hotel, Bristol, from Friday 25th to Sunday 27th February, 2011. The Bristol Show has long been one of the key events on the UK audio calendar, and we hope we'll see you there!