I have met Janusz and Robert Sikora many times at the high-end audio shows. Especially at the Audio Show Warsaw. There was always something that caught my attention and invited me to learn more about the products. But not only the design and particular traits. The analog frontend of J. Sikora Turntables had something highly engaging and inviting. 

J.Sikora Turntables has shown its product publicly for the first time in 2014 at the Warsaw Audio-Video Show. From year to year the organizer Adam Mokrzycki attracts more and more international audiences, which together with the participation at the Munich High-End Show brought J.Sikora on the High-End audio roadmap in a relatively short time. 

Even a brief glance at J.Sikora Turntables gives the feeling of a well-built, well-thought-out product and a closer inspection shows flawless workmanship and the thorough selection of high-quality materials. 

J.Sikora was inspired by some design cues from some of the iconic turntables designs and managed to create products that stand out with an instantly recognizable and novel aesthetic of their own.

J.Sikora's Turntables expertise comes from their main business, which specializes in metalworking. Its core company enables them to manufacture most parts themselves and take strict control of all specifications. Years of experience have enabled them to mix and match a wide range of exotic materials and they've implemented this knowledge into the formation of three original turntable designs; Initial Line, Standard Line, Standard Max Line, Initial Max Line, Reference Line, and nonetheless the tonearm line, that was initialized with the KV12 tonearm.

With analog front-ends, it's all about the right materials and precision. Every little thing is of utmost importance and as you can read in the review, following this logic the final sonic sum of the J. Sikora Standard Max Black not disappoint.


Like with the J.Sikora flagship turntable Standard Max Black was designed from the ground up as a no-compromise design. Great care was taken to achieve maximum rigidity, minimal resonance, minimal vibrations, and the upper plane level of rotational stability.

J.Sikora flagship turntable Standard Max Black implements different and careful tuned materials for its sandwich arrangement. 

Rotational stability is regulated by a very advanced motor control circuit built into the lowest plinth and any remaining irregularities are eliminated by the use of two diametrically-opposed motors. 

Standard Max Black turntable can host two tonearm arm boards and it made in such a way that offers a broader compatibility a wide range of tonearms.

It worth noting that both the two motors and the movement of the turntable are completely silent. I would like to point this out especially because even some of the much more expensive turntables struggle with silent operation and their perpetual motion can be heard from the listening position. Yes, the absolutely silent operation should be mandatory on the entry-level price tag, but in reality, this is not the case.

33 and 45 rpm speed control and fine speed adjustment are controlled by five buttons, and the current selection is shown on the blue LED display. Simple and straightforward.


J.Sikora KV12 certainly attracts attention with its yellowish, immediately recognizable Kevlar color. If the yellow paint is too striking, a black matte version is also an option. 

To be precise, the KV12 is made of aramid fibers, very strong synthetic fibers that heat up very slowly and are used mainly in the military and aerospace sector. While both are trademarks and are manufactured by Du Pont, aramid fibers differ from Kevlar in structure. 85% or more of the amide bonds are attached to aromatic rings. This gives the fibers several different qualities and advantages. All connected with rigidity. 

KV12 is an oil damped unipovit tonearm with an effective mass of 13g and 304.8mm effective length. It was designed from the ground up as a resonance-free concept, and as with J.Sikora's turntable designs, the KV12 uses a mixture of material. The aramid fibers (for the tube), aluminum, bronze, cast iron, and stainless steel.

Another special feature is the silver mono crystal internal wiring, which is produced by Albedo Silver exclusively for J.Sikora. The review sample came with the RCA connectors, which allowed easy integration with various phono preamplifiers. 

As you can see in the photos, the KV12 uses two counterweights, with the larger one closer to the epicenter of the balance. There some smaller weights included if a more precise adjustment is needed.

Similar to my two Döhmann Audio Schröder CB tonearms, the azimuth is adjusted by a sole screw, which is either screwed in or out. 

Anti-skating follows the classic, proven design with the ultra-lightweight mounted at the end of the thread. The installation is easy and straightforward.

The well-thought-out overall design allows the vertical tracking force to be adjusted precisely and efficiently, thus ensuring that the cartridges perform at their best and under the right pressure. 

The other unique and excellently implemented feature is the VTA tower/wheel, which enables one of the simplest on-the-fl adjustments. Although it looks quite simple, it is far from it. 

The large wheel/ribbed nut allows firm handling and was designed to be super easy and unproblematic to adjust with a cartridge in play. 

An extremely practical and excellently implemented feature that makes it easier to handle with the various thicknesses of the records. This feature will certainly interest some analog lovers and connoisseurs who are extremely sensitive to the correct VTA setting and adjust it from album to album. 

It shows that an enormous amount of time was spent on the production of the KV12 tonearm. It is a consistent, throughout concept, extremely well, and precisely executed. 

The hidden complexity of the VTA should not be underestimated, nor should the careful selection of materials. 

This is the premium class tonearm, which is very competitive in price considering everything implemented and especially how well it acts with different cartridges. 

I've used it with a wide variety of cartridges that includes ZYX Ultimate Astro X, Top Wing Red Sparrow, Murasakino Sumile Mono, Gold Note Tuscany Gold, HANA SL and ML cartridges, and Etsuro Urushi Bordeaux cartridge. All with great results, easy mounting, and adjusting. 

J.Sikora KV12 has instantly shown the differences between cartridges and well-known qualities acting as via medium. 


This was one of the easiest (if not the easiest) and most straightforward setup of the turntable I have done in a long time. 

Unpacking the J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntable was simple and straightforward, as everything in the massive shipping wooden box was separated horizontally with the different layers of various Standard Max Black parts. If the step-by-step instructions are followed, the assembly is almost a no-brainer. When installed the complete assembly of Standard Max Black weight an impressive 83 kg. 

The same applies to the KV12 aramid fiber tonearm. 

I've gotten the J. Sikora Standard Max Black fully functional in a far shorter time than I expected. After mounting the first cartridge, I was very tempted to play some well-known pieces. As you can read in the music section, Standard Max Black has instantly sparked my interest and invigorated many late-night listenings.


I've flipped through my favorite records and reference albums with J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntable enchanted and easily lose myself in time and space. 

When it comes to music playback, there is no precise objective momentum. It is a subjective, personal, and yet sensual phenomenon with a highly dosed emotional effect. 

Analogue could still be seen by many as a radically different medium compared to digital technology. It has its qualities, but at the upper level of the 21st century, the differences are not as great as they were a few years ago.

The younger generation, born and grew up in the digital world, is wrongly generalized as unfathomable for the analog. Many of them are rediscovering the vast musical heritage of vinyl records and going even further by trying to find music that was never released in the digital realm.

The analog is not cemented in the older generation. It finally broke out of the mold. As with books, there is a positive trend towards recognizing the qualities of the analog medium and a deeper appreciation of the physical interaction with record and album covers. 

It's all about the true magic of music, and with the J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntable, it was a real treat to do the evaluation. 

Here is the selection of music and references that point to the particular qualities of the J.Sikora turntable.

Fritz Reiner, Chicago Symphony Orchestra - Spain (Falla, Albeniz, Granados) "El amor brujo: Song of Love's Sorrow"

J.Sikora's reproduction of "El amor brujo: Song of Love's Sorrow" dawned on me as the most intense picturesque counterpart of the event. My listening notes repeatedly pointed out Standard Max Black eminently involving and perpetually inviting nature. What a start and the first impression it was!

I was deeply surprised how Standard Max Black was able to uncoil the greater part of the acoustic anchor points and project a wide dispersion of the orchestra impulse. Too often, and regardless of the price, analog playback can sound like a solitary arena where performers are painted as ghastly and blurred frames. 

The Max Black standard not only offers a greater breadth of the sound spectrum. It also reflects the singular aural affirmation with credibility and grandeur.

J. Sikora Standard Max Black Turntable follows the symphonic movements with feather-light ease. This could be deciphered immediately with Kirill Kondrashin, RCA Victor Orchestra - Masquerade and The Comedians "Masquerada, Suite from the incidental music for Orchestra (or Piano): I. Waltz"

Music is always restive and elusive, but if it is seized in the right way and reproduced correctly, it can provide the most profound rendition of reality. Especially with some of the analog inherited qualities that allow the distinctiveness of the original music DNA to be reflected intimately.

Standard Max Black painted the sonic canvas of the "I. Waltz", consummately. It can echo the reality with higher-order credibility completely and precisely when the system is set up in the right way.

Standard Max Black turntable constellation of anchor points bound was so dense that the musical illusion flourishes more completely than usual. And the rare thing occurred. Standard Max Black succeeded to reproduce the expression as a substance and not as a vague, quickly evaporating scent. What a difference, alone worthy of the highest praise.

Another historical masterpiece containing the challenging wonderland of reality is Henryk Szeryng, Antal Doráti, London Symphony Orchestra - Brahms: Violin Concerto / Khachaturian: Violin Concerto.

In particular "Violin Concerto in D minor (also arranged for violin & piano): 1st "Op. 77 - 1. Allegro non troppo" forms a myriad of possible sonic shapes and shades, encapsulated with the beautiful music narrative.

J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntables do not bend the musical tale as many turntables can. The soundscape is not only restored but is imbued with the qualities of the real thing. Standard Max Black also showed its remarkable ability to immediately form diminutive attacks and immense dynamic impact with the true qualities of the upper level high-end audio reproduction. 

The mysterious and exponential atmosphere of Ry Cooder, James Luther Dickinson, David Lindley - Paris, Texas (Wim Wenders - 1984 ) "Paris, Texas" was plied in all its glory by the J.Sikora turntable. 

The Standard Max Black standard allowed for an acoustic illusion that carries the impressively high and deep interactivity with enchanting contours of reality.

To be able to fully unfold "Paris, Texas", a mature and fine balanced analog frontend is needed. Again, Standard Max Black did not disappoint. Far from it. It has shown how meticulous efforts and the right design choices allow comprehensive immersion in the music. The rendition of "Paris, Texas" was both subtle and amazingly stirring, and Standard Max Black painted it on the sound canvas with surprising clarity.

Little Feat - The Last Record album Long Distance Love has further demonstrated that J. Sikora Standard Max Black's ability to handle both subtlety and complexity is not a happy coincidence. Standard Max Black followed each pictorial sequence promptly and accurately, without losing the beat. Standard Max Black is defined by a unique sense of directionality, without the syncopated rhythms and beats contrasts blurring or time smearing.

Standard Max Black gave full bloom to the "Long Distance Love" and had no problem with dynamic intensities that even some of the more expensive turntables have to struggle with. Moreover, it provided a grandiose spatial representation and an exact reproduction of timbre, tone, and color accuracy, without neglecting the archane information data, which is crucial for objective portrayal.

Analog reproduction can be a wonder-stricken experience, and the J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntable is one of the rare examples of analog front-ends that make such magic possible. 

In the crowded market of high-end audio turntables, this is a rare quality. Contrary to the mass of various analog solutions out there, J. Sikora Standard Max Black offers a super captivating escapade. In the era of distractions, this is the right antidote that let breaking out of the trance of busyness with a highly potent music detox. 

With J. Sikora Standard Max Black the music is woven from much denser sinews. The same goes for the submarine depths and the blacker backgrounds, which, with the right record in the game, reflect the digital quietness at the highest level. 

Regardless of the price point, many high-end audio turntables dim the perspective of the music. On the opposite: J. Sikora Standard Max Black chameleon-like nature feels more like the master of perspective and the immense intimate analog firmament.

Despite the sounding convoluting the ability to convey that intangible sensation is exactly the quality that represents the genuine achievement that can be ranked with the high-end audio sticker. 

There's no problem with rating and labeling J. Sikora Standard Max Black. This is full-blooded and a real high-end product throughout!


In the past few months, I have become specifically found of the J. Sikora Standard Max Black qualities and how well it served the music on the daily basis. 

This analog masterpiece offers an unusual immersion in music with a remarkably high level of buoys. Standard Max Black can distinguish between fact and fiction with unexpected ease and offers a mesmeric encounter with the very essence of the music if the recording allows such interaction. 

J. Sikora Standard Max Black analog lore got quickly around. I never had a feeling that is transient with the quality of music playback. On contrary! Standard Max Black has a grandiose, meticulous, captivating ability, and permits an immediate immersion in the music. 

In the proper set-up and well-balanced high-end audio system, J. Sikora Standard Max Black can evoke a highly impressive iridescent shimmer of tones and colors, with the unique and refreshing ability to reproduce a refreshing and most impressive kaleidoscopic complexity.

It is one of the rare turntables I know where the spaces between the notes are heard as silence and not as various iterations of forte noise. This is a feature that deserves high praise in itself and one that even some of the six-digit turntables can struggle with. 

None of J.Sikora's turntables were designed to compete with digital audio. Like the rest of J.Sikora's turntables, the Standard Max Black is a masterpiece in its own right, designed as a stand-alone analog device without compromises. 

Even with the complete development of digital audio technology, there is no substitute for the physical experience of handling the record, the tonearm, the turntable, etc. The ritual tactile experience still delights so many people and, in combination with state-of-the-art analog reproduction, forms a winning combination for many audiophiles and music lovers. 

J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntable sets a standard for how 21st high-end audio should be executed and more importantly, how it should perform. Jan Sikora made an ode to the analog and undoubtedly proven maturity of J.Sikora turntables with its Standard Max Black.

Standard Max Black's design does not impose itself, but a quick glance reveals refined minimalism with the qualities of the Bauhaus school of design. It is characterized by first-class construction quality, and the hidden complexity is executed in a simple but not simpler way.

In a highly competitive high-end audio market, the J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntable offers more than just a captivating and engrossing look at what the analog cosmos has to offer. Standard Max Black provides surprisingly effective levels of clarity, accuracy, and upper-level music data headroom.

No wonder that in a relatively short time J. Sikora turntables were embraced by so many analog enthusiasts and connoisseurs around the world. 

With the analog playback quality it offers at a given price, it is not difficult to recommend this excellent turntable from Poland. Compared to the many high-end audio turntables Standard Max Black the price tag does not only seem reasonable. The price-performance ratio is far above expectations. J. Sikora Standard Max Black turntable represents an epitome of contemporary high-end audio turntable design and raises the bar with its quality, performance, and value. 

For which I reward the J. Sikora Standard Max Black and KV12 tonearm with the 2020 Mono and Stereo Highly Recommended Product Award and Best of 2020 with all my heart. ♛

Matej Isak 


  • Standard Max Black 14,770 EUR
  • KV12 tonearm 6,000 EUR



  • Total weight [kg]: 83
  • Platter weight [kg]: 18
  • Platter material: derlin and cast iron
  • Material: aluminium,brass,copper,inox,bronze
  • Bearing type: ceramic ball-inverted
  • Motor [pcs]: 2 DC
  • Belt: rubber
  • Rotation speed [rpm]: 33; 45
  • No. of tonearms: 2
  • Armboard: yes
  • Clamp: yes
  • Glass mat: yes
  • Power supply: yes
  • Dimensions [mm]: 620 x 350 x 410


  • Bearing type: unipivot
  • Material: aramid fibres, aluminium, bronze, cast iron, stainless steel
  • Oil damping: yes
  • Tube: conical (aramid fibres)
  • VTA adjustment: yes
  • Azimuth: yes
  • Mass: 890g (+armboard 140g)
  • VTA mass: 225g
  • Effective lenght: 304,8mm
  • Mounting distance: 291 mm
  • Effective mass: 13g
  • Standard wiring: silver mono-crystal Albedo (exclusively for J.Sikora)
  • Available colours: natural yellow / lacquered black mat



ul.Poligonowa 41

20-817 Lublin


Tel: +48 501 236 108