In recent years vintage Kenwood gear has been rapidly appreciating in value, and just a quick look at this turntable will tell you why.
First of all its build quality is astounding, it is built like a Sherman tank…literally! It’s plinth incorporates resin-concrete and it’s platter is extra heavy weighing in at 3lbs, which is intended to give the platter further stability through increased inertia. Kenwood boasted in their advertising material that this turntable wouldn’t jump even if you sat it on a speaker!
As a direct drive turntable it features an advanced 20 pole, 30 slot servo controlled DC motor with high torque for rotational stability, combined with the heavy 3lbs platter mentioned earlier, you get a very stable turntable with a stock Wow & Flutter of only 0.035% and only -70dB Rumble.
In addition to what has already been mentioned here is a quick overview of features; a newly developed (in 1977) tonearm, micro-ball bearings, anti-skating adjustment, semi-automatic function, pitch control, high-visibility strobe light, viscous dampened cueing device, low capacitance phono cables, stylus pressure direct readout counter and built in insulators.
The tonearm on this model is a particular fave with audiophiles, it’s center of gravity is very closely aligned to its axis of rotation. This makes it extremely forgiving when choosing a cartridge allowing you to push the specified limits of cartridge weights. The tonearm was developed especially for the KD-3070 by Kenwood to ensure Low Mass, Low Resonance, High Trackability and improved Frequency Response. To achieve this Kenwood redesigned not only the geometry of the armature but also the materials used to make it, right down to it’s ball bearings.
And the end result is magical. If your a direct drive fan, then this is certainly one that deserves an audition. Many audiophiles like to tweak this model with new feet or spikes, record weights and various platter mats. With the exception of a mat and an Ortofon cartridge I am running my model stock, and loving every minute of it!
Posted In: Turntables
Tagged: vintage kenwood turntable
I have this turntable as well, part of an all-Kenwood stack centered around its notable 1977-79 lineup of components. This was the period when high-end solid state components had come to the fore and finally rivaled tube units. They looked as good as they sounded. One point you don’t mention — it is a semi-automatic model, another indication of its mechanical sophistication. There was one model above this one in the Kenwood hierarchy, judging by the catalogs, but it is plenty good enough.
I just bought one of these with a Kenwood KR 7600 and couldn’t be more pleased.
PETER GABRIEL RINCON MENESES
Anti skating. Where do you bring it and how do you agree
Very nice to-the-point description. Thank you. Indeed a great table. I just snapped one off Ebay for a $100 in what appears on the screen a great shape and have my fingers crossed that it arrives in similar conditions.
But the Sherman tank was not that good. It was a mass production ‘car design’ hardware with more weak spots, conceptual screwups and a pea-shoot gun than a burned alive soldier would care for. On the mass production side the T-34 was much, much better and Americans should have gotten that license from Stalin instead.
I’m going to assume you meant 3.1 lbs platter weight. Actually that was pretty common weight for direct drive platters of this vintage. Very late 70s TTs lightened the platters further and the 80s?… let’s not even talk about that. Technics paltters from this vintage weighed 3.3 lbs. Thorens platters were about 6.5 pounds as were some of the older Duals like the 1229, 1219 and 1019 . The Dual 701 (including rotor) was 9 lbs and the Linn Sondek’s naked platter was 9.5 lbs!
I believe platter weight, rigidity and inertness play a large a role in a turntable’s actual sound (or lack of it) as does the quality of the main bearing. This is one of the reasons Linn LP12 became legendary for it’s great “sound”. Belt drives have a distinct advantage in that they lend themselves to the use of high quality, precision machined main bearings. Direct drives unfortunately have to rely on the motor shaft acting as the main bearing which is not ideal. Never the less some of the direct Drives were pretty damn good inluding many of the Kenwoods such as the KD3070. Kenwood TTs are really well constructed especially the higher models like the KD-500/550, KD 600/650 and KD 750. None of these Kenwoods were very well isolated however so users employed a variety of custom feet and mounting systems. That plus other tweeks like mortite appled to the underside of the platter Made them perform close to high end TTs at a much lower cost.
Wow great to hear the good reviews I managed to grab actually rescue a 3070 at a junk yard sale. I think I paid 10 bucks. Much to my happiness although the cover is broken and it’s missing a leg, today after cleaning it up and a little tlc. The relic sounds awesome although I had to borrow the head shell from my 1200. I’m glad to hear it’s a well regarded turntable and obviously somewhat bullet proof. I should have taken a picture of it dumped on the ground when I found it. Lol
I have the Kenwood Model # KD-7030 Direct Drive w/ Strobe. I need a cartridge and stylus for it. Does anyone know what type and brand would be compatible with this turntable? Thank you Barry Crum
I have a rega rp6 and a Technica sl 1210 also a pioneer PL 600 ,I finally hook the Kenwood 3070 to my Yamaha a- 1000 using two different cartridge r
Denon 103r and audio Technica 740 cartridge was shock by how good this tt sound !
I just thought I’d look to see what I might find online regarding my KD 3070 that I’ve had since 1981, and came across your mention of it. One thing that you mentioned made my son and I laugh—you said it was built like a Sherman tank. That is a very true statement— here’s my proof. A few months after buying it, my brother and I were traveling thru Utah on our way back to school when he fell asleep and ended up rolling the car twice before it landed on its wheels facing the opposite direction that we were traveling (neither of us were hurt). My KD 3070 was in the trunk and enjoyed the roll with us. Well, 39 years later it is still cranking out beautiful music and allowing my son and I many ours of share music appreciation! At half the age of the turntable, he has come to live listening to the special music experience attached to vinyl. We find most of our collection at Everyday Music , in their used stacks— a wonderful way to spend time with my son!