SL-1200 Models

Original Model

SL-1200
(released in 1972) has a silver finish, this model was originally marketed as a hi-fi turntable for the home market.

 


MK2 models

The MK2 models were sold in Europe with different model numbers indicating a different colour; the 1200 (silver) and 1210 (matte black). This was the same in the USA (and Japan) initially, however later the 1200 was available in both silver and matte black finishes.

SL-1200MK2 (released in 1979) comes in both silver and matte black (see above comment). Technics improved the motor and shock resistance, added a ground wire, and changed the rotary pitch control to a slider style. This is now the base model and is the oldest whose production was done until 2010. The older version of this model which was sold in the 1970s and 1980s has a large 4-inch-diameter (100 mm) plate where the RCA and ground wires enter the unit, while the newer version has a smaller 2-inch-diameter (51 mm) hole in the rubber where the RCA and ground enter.

 


SL-1210MK2
comes in matte black only (see above comment), and is nearly the same in function as the SL-1200MK2, although some of the circuitry inside is updated to use fewer different types of pots and resistors.[7] The Technics 1210 series also had a switch to change between voltages on the underside of the platter, whereas the 1200 series did not. It used to be unavailable from official Panasonic dealers in the United States.

 


SL-1200MK2PK
has a matte black finish, and was only available in the USA.

MK3 models

SL-1200MK3 (released in 1989) has a matte black finish like the MK2, gold RCA plugs, and a small gold-foil Technics label on the back. It was destined only for the Japanese market.

 


SL-1200MK3D
(Japan release only)

 


SL-1200M3D
(released in 1997) has a silver finish like the MK2, a detached dust cover (no hinges), and no detent ("click") at the zero point of the pitch adjustment slider, allowing more precise control of pitch near that point. It also has a reset button which sets the pitch adjustment to 0, regardless of the actual position of the pitch adjustment slider.

 


SL-1210M3D
is the same as the SL-1200M3D except with a matte black finish like the MK2, except for the voltage switch.

 


MK4 models

SL-1200MK4 (released in 1997) has a matte black finish like the MK2, and is only available for sale in Japan. This model is aimed at the hi-end audiophile market rather than for DJs. This is the last model made with the detent ("click") in the middle of the pitch adjustment slider. It has a third button added for 78 RPM located to the right of the 33 RPM and 45 RPM buttons. It is also designed to be used with regular removable RCA cables (along with a removable ground/earth cable) rather than having hard wired RCA cables like all the other 1200/1210 models.

 


MK5 models

SL-1200MK5 (released in 1 November 2002) has a silver finish like the MK2, increases the range of anti-skate settings from 0–3 grams-force (0–30 mN) to 0–6 grams-force (0–60 mN). Also has a white LED target light (previous versions only had a globe and burnt out over time). Current MK5 models have a removable lid with magnets as opposed to the MK2 and MK3 removable hinged lid.

SL-1210MK5 has a matte black finish like the MK2, and is exactly the same as the SL-1200MK5, aside from the voltage switch, like the other decks in the 1210 series.

 


SL-1200MK5G
Similar to the SL-1210M5G.

SL-1210M5G (released in 1 November 2002) has a glossy piano-black finish with silver speckles, was a special 30th-anniversary edition. It was initially launched in Japan only (together with the MK5) but is now internationally available. The difference from the MK5 model is the ability to switch between ±8% and ±16% ranges for pitch adjustment, and the pitch control in this model is completely digital. It also features blue target lights and blue pitch-number illumination. The brake strength potentiometer, although still located beneath platter, can now be adjusted, unlike previous models, without the need for a screwdriver thanks to the addition of a small plastic knob. Minor improvements over Mk2, Mk3, Mk4, & 1200LTD also include improved tonearm mounting and oxygen-free copper wire being used for the signal, improved vibration damping in the body, improvements to the pitch control accuracy and better LEDs.

 


MK6 models

SL-1200MK6-K & SL-1200MK6-S (released in February 2008 in Japan) with minor improvements including improved tonearm mounting and oxygen-free copper wire being used for the signal, improved vibration damping in the body, improvements to the pitch control accuracy and better LEDs. -S model has a silver finish like the MK2.

SL-1200MK6K1 is the same as the SL-1200MK6 except with a matte black finish like the MK2. Released in 12 December 2007 (in Japan) as a special 35th-anniversary edition, in a limitation of 1000 only.

 


Special models

These were limited edition versions, with 24 karat gold plated metal parts including tonearm and buttons.

SL-1200LTD (released in September 1995) wholly based on the MK3, it has a piano black gloss finish with gold speckles, and its production run was limited to 10,000 units only.

 


SL-1200GLD (released in 2004), another limited edition model, with only 3,000 units manufactured. The GLD has a piano black gloss finish without the gold speckles of the LTD. It is based on the MK5G model, with blue (instead of the regular white) target lights.

 

Coming Soon (2016)

IFA in Berlin - Panasonic announces the upcoming release of a new Technics turntable. Although exciting and interesting what is unknown is if this will be a Turntable gear toward the Audiophile or the DJ or both. Only time will tell. Until then here are some pictures of what is to come.