SOTA STAR Sapphire Turntable Care and Feeding

I'm seriously interested in a used SOTA STAR Sapphire Series III Turntable with Vacuum, Electronic Flywheel and SME Series IV Tonearm, that is close to me and a very reasonable price.  It would be a big step up from my current Pro-Ject X2B, but I want to make sure it is not too technical for my dinosaur brain before I pull the trigger.  How difficult it is to get set up?  Once it is set up, do you need to constantly fuss over it or just the occasional check?  I have an upgraded Joliida JD-9 phono pre-amp.  Would this pre-amp be sufficient for the SOTA  or would I need to upgrade that to do justice to the SOTA?  Any other quirks of this turntable that I should be aware of?  Thanks in advance for your advice.


John Cotner

New Ulm, MN


I got on the phone with SOTA to talk about refurbished turntables.  Had a few nice conversations with Christan and we talked about my stereo upgrade plan, the room and my listening habits and tastes.  Turns out they have one rosewood Sapphire III ready to get refurbished.  We talked about my budget and Christan gave me some options, so I pulled the trigger.  It's going to get Series IV electronics, Rega 330 tonearm and a Hana cartridge, which will keep it in my budget.  It should be ready in January.  I enjoyed working with Christan and am excited to get a SOTA turntable after 30+ years of pining for one.

Good deal! Awesome that you get a 3 chassis with that exotic wood - they used some really beautiful woods back then. On the flip side - SOTA's tech, engineering, and materials quality for inside the chassis took a HUGE leap forward when Christan came onboard a few years back. They were somewhat stagnant for a long time before that. You're in good hands!

Congratulations! I am sure you will be very happy. Getting a used table from who knows who is a great way to end up with anything from poor performance to outstanding… with little way of knowing for sure. 

Congrats on your purchase! I am getting ready to pick up my new Nova VII from Christian in a week and am excited as well. Enjoy yours in the new year.

I own d a SOTA Star with an SME V for years. Get it. Excellent user friendly combo

Any upgrades to the turntable will be far in the future.  I still have to upgrade my amp and speakers.