Funk's F5 has proved itself a very capable arm and in no small part has helped Funk’s now legendary Little Super Deck achieve its status as a very high performing deck at a very modest price.
Funk pioneered the costly F.X technology to great effect, where it is recognised for the advance it is when employed in FX3. This arm is used as a reference arm by no less than four magazines, two of them international.
Ongoing R&D means that F5 can itself also benefit from this technology. Improvements in manufacturing have resulted in a new more cost-effective F.X, cross-bracing core, pared down from Funk’s FX3. This means that now all Funk’s arms sport this feature which results in a much more open clearer sound than some arms costing thousands of pounds.
FX5 is now manufactured in a variety of guises to meet various applications: All arms feature removable headshells with azimuth capability.
We start with FX5-X as the top model of the range, which also boasts Funk’s variable mass, sliding weight on a calibrated tube. This not only makes setting tracking weight straightforward, moving coil cartridges are typically low compliance than moving magnets and so benefit from an arm with higher mass, which is what the sliding weight allows.
It also has a more substantial support plate with a proprietary lift mechanism and dedicated rest. The combination is altogether substantial yet sleek.
FX5-G is the next version down is considerably less expensive: A full stand-alone arm, it is primarily designed to complement Funk’s revised Gett! 2. Cost savings have been made by replacing the support plate lift and arm rest with a 1-piece arm rest and lift mechanism. In addition the tracking weight is set by a dial-on counterweight.
FX5L and FX5T: Designed as straight drop-in replacement arms for the legendary GL75 / 78 and also the TD150 / 160 decks, they use the existing lift and arm rest on the decks themselves and so are supplied without these items. . Designated FX5L for Lenco and FX5T for Thorens, both are priced at £375.00
FX5-L: The “L” designation is for legacy Lenco turntables, specifically GL75 and GL78.
Deservedly, Goldring Lencos idler driven turntables have achieved a very high level of cult status that equals that of Garrard 301 and 401. The weakness with the Lencos has always been the installed arm which suffers not only from failing “V” blocks, but far more significantly their poor sonic performance – they were after all designed some 40 years ago or more! And suffer from a highly resonant arm tubes, the ringing lateral balance and worst of all an oversize, thin and highly resonant sheet headshell. The deleterious performance mars the otherwise very good performance of the turntable itself, masking a lot of information. Replacing the arm with the new technology of F.X, the sonic improvement is so easily discernible from the first track. It really is that simple and that decisive.
The pillar itself is of note. It is sleeved with an energy absorbent sleeve that acts as a first line defence and helps filter residual motor vibration. Note: This effect is noticeable both on all idler drive turntables.
(Filtering all the energy is straightforward by employing Houdini.)
Fitting FX5-L is a simple matter of dropping it into the existing 25.9mm mounting hole. FX5-L is designed specifically to use the existing lift lower mechanism and the arm rest to create a marriage made in heaven.
Thorens TD 150 TD160: FX5-T:
Although of similar geometry, the actual mechanics of the two arms differ in their mounting with the TP16 arm, for example, using a slim 20mm hole. The “T” designation then refers to the slimmer pillar construction needed to fit Thorens TD150 and TD160 models. Again FX5-T’s well-controlled arm beam performance and non-resonant headshell completely outperforms the flimsy skeletal headshell and resonant arm beam and allows all the improvements to be heard just as easily.
Fitting Achromat and Houdini and. You will experience an ensemble that will take your very good turntables to the highest levels of performance attainable. Expect to be as astonished as the customers in the testimonials who have so freely written in.
As ever, Funk offers a full money back if you do not agree.