New Product and upgrade announcement: 2009 - we have completely re-designed the None-Felt Mat as Mark III. The Mark-3 material is provided with the purchase of complete Speed Donut or Standard Mat.
We did not go to sleep over our success in the last 2 years, where the None-Felt mat is easily one of the best selling and most popular mats in the vinyl lover communities, and we are flabbergasted there are various knock-off of our None-Felt Mat design all over the Internet - "Copying is the most sincere form of compliment".
The None-Felt Mk-3 is a special compound material, it has a texture that's somewhat like combining suede with Neoprene. Mk-3 comes with several improvements: (1) We no longer provide different versions for Standard and Donut models ¨C the Mk-3 comes with precision-cut lines so you can choose to keep it as a ¡®standard¡¯ or remove the center area following the pre-cut lines to use it as a Donut mat. (2) This unique material sounds good and remain low-maintenance.
Thickness of the None-Felt Mk-3 mat is 2mm, approximates the Linn felt mat, and slightly thicker than Rega's. However, slight adjustments to VTA, VTF, and even anti-skating could refine the improvements.
The "Speed" - Carbon Graphite Turntable Mat
It took us hundreds of sleepless night to develop the 'Speed' - Carbon Graphite turntable mat. Extremephono discovered the use of carbon graphite material as an ideal audio material for its unique energy-dissipation quality, and we had been promoting the use of carbon graphite as part of our LP12 modification (no longer available).
Nevertheless, we want to lower the cost, simplify the installation and offer a significant improvements to every vinyl lovers. And the 'Speed' is born. We named it the 'Speed' due to carbon graphite is the 'fastest' material in the removal of vibrational and interfering (i.e. the "bad") energy.
Carbon graphite fabric is extremely stiff, which means it transfers energy from one end to another extremely effectively. By keeping the fiber as thin as possible, and bundling up thousands of them, at least 1000 fibers per centimeter square, carbon graphite composite absorbs and dissipates undesirable energy such as from the stylus/groove interaction and air-borne acoustic feedback. The energy gets dissipated and becomes heat rather than be trapped by mass and radiated back to the transducer over time. The highly conductive nature of the carbon graphite also eliminates static completely, and provides extra shielding for the sensitive cartridge coils.
The Speed is extremely thin (no adjustment to VTA), 0.47mm, to be exact. It can be laid over any turntable platter or any mat material (None Felt, Felt, Rubber, whatever) and it offers a tremendous performance boost. The most significant changes include: expanding the dynamics, the bass drops deeper, and the treble is now cleanly defined and extended. It seems like the Signal-Noise ratio of the system just expanded, as the volume control can be increased at least 2 notches yet without feeling too loud - the soundstage just gets wider and deeper. With the "Speed", the vinyl playback becomes extremely accurate and very precise. The attack and decay are fast and furious.
To our ears, the improvement is as significant as upgrading the phono stage! Positive reports from users of turntables ranging from Rega P3 to SME20, in between, we have LP12, VPI TNT, Basis Debut, Wilson Benesch, Avid, Thorens, Technics, Roksan TMS, etc.
How is this accomplished? To start off, we use 100% pure carbon graphite fabric consists of 3K fibers. The same fabric is used in the most demanding aerospace and defense industries. The fabric is impregnated with resin selected for stability and good sound. To keep the "Speed" extremely flat with no wrinkle requires special clean room and high-precision press. The final mat is individually precision-cut using an extremely high pressure cutting tools that can sears off the edge and simultaneously cold-welds the the edge to retains it's shape without fraying fibers.
The 'Speed' may be used with or without a None-Felt Mat. For turntables with well-damped platter surface, such as felt mat, or rubber mat, place the Speed directly above the original platter surface. For additional damping, such as lighter, metallic or glass platter, place the Speed mat on top of the None-Felt mat.
Comments from "Speed" users:
"Kudos!!!!! I was leery. I admit it. I've tried and tested and gave away many $ worth of "upgrades", add-ons, even cartridges and yes some mats that left me disappointed and feeling burnt.
But everything you say about the SPEED is without exaggeration. I bought your Non-Felt & Speed for use on a stock Thorens TD-160, and / or a Systemdek IIX / Profile ... but it hasn't got to those decks yet. Not yet because I first slipped them on my Technics 1700 mkII and without a doubt it's staying there. I have not been able to stop playing music since. My wife is even melting way in sonic heaven. Regardless of what cart I clip on the arm the improvements are shocking. The background is inky black, the richness has quadrupled, and the total absence of pops & crackles is a Godsend. There's simply Zero downside here. Bass is deeper and cleaner. Mid range is all there, nothing missing and nothing added with depth I haven't heard before from even the oldest LP's in the collection. The high end sparkles in perfect harmony and balance. That's the real key, the Perfect Balance. All this from the MM cart collection ... I can't wait to get the Denon 103 MC tracking!"
"I have the mats. The improvement is STAGGERING STAGGERING STAGGERING! Recordings have taken on the noise floor of the best CD's I own but retaining all of the attributes of analog. Highs are more extended and sweeter than ever. The bass is seemingly as great as the best digital. All smearing has been eliminated or reduced to almost nothing which means that even in complex orchestral scores, different instruments are easily delineated from one another. Soloists stand in real space with the accompaniment really behind them. Fremer needs to try this combo for himself rather than taking complaints via email from the audio nuts out there. No! Send it to Jonathan Valin and get a great review from him.
I am using the mats as indicated. Non-Felt knobby side down with shiny side of Speed on top. I listened for a while without changing VTA on my Well Tempered Classic TT with Benz Ruby 2 Cartridge. After about an hour I raised the VTA a very very small amount to increase the sparkle in the highs. This is analog heaven. I don't think I could have accomplished this without buying a Walker Proscenium Gold TT. I have been wondering what benefit would be had by placing my TT on a Black Diamond Racing The Shelf. Who Cares?!!! This is a monumental change for the better!."
"I have owned both the Boston Audio Mat 1 and the Living Voice' Mystic Mat. Both of these mats are made very well and can significantly improve the sound of most turntables. I can tell you that right out of the box, the Speed Mat sounded much better than the Boston Audio Mat 1. On my highly modified Rega, the Boston Mat did clean up the top end a great deal. You could hear a lot of detail that I had never noticed before, but it seemed to do it at the expense of other areas. There was a loss in the mid to lower bass that I could not get back. It was as though the body of the music had been taken away. The Speed Mat put the body and life back into the music. I still got all of the micro-detail of the Boston Mat, but I also got the mid to lower bass back. Your mat just made the music sound "right". I also used a clamp. With the VPI clamp, you have to use the rubber washer or the record will bow. You only clamp enough to press the lp against the Speed Mat. Yes, the clamp makes a difference, too. So, I put my Boston Mat on Ebay. Against the Living Voice Mystic Mat, things are a little different. Give me a little more time and I will write my impressions on this competition."
"A great improvement with the Speed mat versus Boston Mat, None-Felt + Speed was too much damping so I use my regular rubber mat and SPeed on top of it, they work perfect together...Now I only need a high class tonearm to make magic happen...."
"Mats arrived today. Listened briefly on the Basis Debut. Definitely quieter background and more explosive dynamics. Soundstage is more precise with more space between musicians and vocalists. And yes, all seems quicker. Aptly named the speed. These are initial impressions. Did not listen long enough to determine whether additional musical information would cause me to feel fatigued. Did not feel as though I could increase the volume; more than enough information at my current/normal listening volume."
"Tried it -NICE!!! I adjusted VTA down slightly-very balanced smooth non-muddy sound. I like it It will be in rm#731 on display on my Wilson Benesch Circle. Will let you know down the road on the others. PS. no record weight/clamp required-sounds worse...."
"Fantastic mat!!! Used it all weekend on the Wilson Benesch Circle. I loved it, lots of people saw it, and asked!! Put it on my Avid under the clamp-NEED ANOTHER ONE!! It will stay on the Avid -it cleans out the slight ringing in the treble, and widens the sound stage. GOOD JOB."
"My first impression: WOWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now my system seems a FERRARI DAYTONA!!!!!!!!! It's like to push the turbo boost. More velocity, more bass (controlled and fast) more deeper, and finally who sing is not sit on a sofa but stand up in front of you with a real dimension that is hard to have also with a new phonostage!!! Treble is perfect, detailed but without harshness....All my customers that listened to the Speed are falling down from the sofa!!!!!!!!!!!!"
"I use a Rega 3 with an after market acrylic platter. Nothing I tried including Ring mat, Herbie's new mat or your original mat, outweighed the advantages of going matless, however the Speed Mat package has exceeded the expectations of what I thought possible for a passive product to extract so much information from vinyl."
"The Speed mat is so thin, so it doesn't alter the VTA like the non-felt mat did. It didn't take more than couple of notes before you hear something special. The highs extended further, without being edgy. The lows has better definition, with better control and foundation. What I really like about it, is, just as the product name specified, "speed". It make music flow more freely. The PRaT just improved without adding any dryness or harshness. And the difference is not subtle. It's almost as apparent as changing a cartridge. If you think you need to upgrade your cartridge, maybe you should try this mat first. You might open a new window of your gears."
"Thanks for the quick shippment. I placed my order on Friday and recived it on Monday. Took a few days to do some serious listening and thought you would be interested in my findings. As you may recall I have a Rega P-25 tt. I replaced my Rega glass platter with an Iron Audio acrylic platter. I already had one of your Donut Non-Felt mats. The non-felt mat work fine until I started using a record clamp which resulted in the non-felt mat sticking to record after playing them. Placing the "skin" on top of the non-felt mat curred that problem. I liked the look of the black Skin on top of the non-felt mat; however, I didn't detect any sonic difference. But I didn't buy it for that purpose. Next I place the "Donut Speed" on topic of the non-felt mat. Did hear a slight sonic improvement, and even more when I placed the Donut Speed mat directly onto the acrylic platter. I also prefer the looks of the platter with just the Speed mat than with the Speed mat ontop of the non-felt mat. In the past I have found that the best way to compare components is extented listening of a new component and then reserting the old component back into my system. Although my initial impression was that the Speed mat by itself sounded better then the Speed mat ontop of the non-felt mat, on extended listening I was blown away when listening to "Totem Pole" on Lee Morgan's "Sidewinder" (Blue Note: BLP-4157/84157). Although the first cut on side one (i.e. "Sidewinder") sounded good, it was the 2nd cut ("Totem Pole") that really sounded different with the "Speed" mat then with just the "Non-Felt" mat. Lee's trumpet had a bit and transient response that startled me. Since I still had the glass platter I thought it would be interesting to compare sounds of different combinations of your mats on glass compared to on acyrlic. Spend most of today doing that. My results: On the glass platter LPs sound better with the "Speed" mat ontop of the "Non-Felt" mat, followed by the "Non-Felt Mat" with the Skin. The "Speed" by itself did not sound very good by itself on the glass platter. Overall, despite the mat used, LPs sounded better when played on the acrylic platter then when played on the glass platter. My recommendations: 1) If you have a glass platter and money is a issue, get the "Non-Felt" Donut mat with the "Skin" or 2) skip the "Skin" and get the "Speed" Donut mat to go ontop of the "Non-Felt" Donut mat; or 3) get an acrylic platter (mine cost me $99) and a "Speed" mat. If you already have an acrylic platter just get the "Speed" mat. Although I do have both a reqular "Non-Felt" mat and a donut "Non-Felt" mat and prefer the donut, I didn't have a regular "Speed" mat to compare to my donut "Speed" mat so I leave it up to others to comment regarding which to recommend. I will say that the thicker "Non-Felt" donut mat allows more of the raised label portion of the LP to sit inside the donut section of the mat, thus allowing the rest of the LP to sit flat on the mat. The "Speed" mat is much thinner and I am not sure if it allows LPs to sit as flat on the mat as the Non-Felt mats does. As I said earlier, I use a record clamp and with the "Speed" donut mat I can clamp my LPs directly to my platter, which I couldn't when I use the thicker "Non-Felt" donut mat. I consider getting Boston Acoustic Mat 1 but at 1/2 the price I am happy with Extremphone "Speed" mat. I'll use the Non-Felt donut mat with the "Skin" on my basement tt. I've already given my regular Non-Felt mat to my son for his tt. - John from Boylston, MA."
If you have time, read this very long and detail review by a highly critical customer with SME 20/A, Van Den Hul Frog, and the Speed.
The Original None Felt Mat - Discontinued
Stereophile published a review of the None-Felt Mat in the August 2002 issue by Sam Tellig. In October 2002, the mat made it to the list of 'Recommended Components'.
#1 FAQ: Which mat should I get?
Extremephono recommends the "Speed" as the ultimate mat - especially with a high performance MC cartridge and tonearm. The "Speed" has no equal, we welcome customers to try it out, even against the $200 or $400 'other carbon mats'.
#2 FAQ: Should I use Donut or Standard shape mat?
Donut is the best sounding mat, the unique shape allows the record to lie perfectly flat for best energy coupling.
#3 FAQ: Clamp or no clamp ?
Mechanically, as long as the clamp does not weight a ton, there is no mechanical problem using a clamp with the None-Felt mat. However, it is advisable to note that the sonic performance using the None-Felt mat is beyond the effect of any record clamp. In another word, clamping records down on the None-Felt mat is not necessary and could sound worse than without the clamp.
We will be closed from 6/28 to 7/7. Orders placed online during our closures will be shipped on 7/8/2014.
|Description||SKU #||MSRP||Online special|
|The Speed - Donut Carbon Graphite + None-Felt Mat Mk-3||SPDM1||$119||$119|
|The Speed - Donut Carbon Graphite Upgrade w/o None-Felt||SPDOU||$99||$99|
|Solid State Stylus Cleaner||SCC1||$29||$29|
|The Speed - Standard Carbon Graphite + None-Felt Mat Mk-3||SPSM1||$119||$119|
|The Speed - Standard Carbon Graphite Upgrade w/o None-Fellt||SPSOU||$99||$99|
|Silk Wrapped Litz Cartridge Lead (4 per set)||LCL1||
|Alloy Cartridge Mounting Kit||CMK1||
|2mm Hex Key||HEX1||
|Canada/International Air Shipping Surcharge
(*please add this surcharge if outside USA and APO, otherwise, order will be shipped by lowest cost option such as surface mail/parcel, and may take 4 to 6 weeks)
We will be closed from 6/28 to 7/7. Orders placed online during our closures will be shipped on 7/8/2014.
Money-back guarantee. Regardless of any reason, within 30-day, return the item in its original condition for a full-refund.
Europe Customers - Please contact your local agent, direct order from USA will cost more due to VAT charged for your items. Our European agents provide the lowest delivered prices in Europe.
Toniolo Dimitri e-mail - MAD FOR MUSIC - http://www.madformusic.it SOLE AGENT FOR ITALY
Rogier van Hoof, Crusade-Audio. E-mail, http://www.crusade-audio.nl Distributor for Netherlands and Belgium.