The Lost Worlds of Lenco . . .


Swiss company Lenco (established 1946 from Fritz and Marie Laeng in Burgdorf, Switzerland) were manufactures of high-quality turntables for several decades. These turntables were sold all over the world - in Europe under the Lenco name, by Bogen and Benjamin in the States, under their names, and in the UK by Goldring under the name Goldring-Lenco - these Lencos also gained a 'G' in their model naming scheme: the L75 became a GL75 when it set foot in the UK, but was otherwise identical. Leak and Goodmans also sold Goldring-Lencos under their brand names.

The Lenco name lives on today, licensed since 1998 by the Dutch conglomerate STL Group - who don't make light of their acquisition.

Goldring may have been more than just a Lenco reseller. I suspect the 88 and 99 turntables were commissioned by Goldring. Certainly I've never seen a 'Lenco 88' and, outside of the UK, these arm-less models are something of a rarity.

Interestingly or tellingly - Goldring mention only one turntable in their landmark products history timeline - the GL85, a much later belt drive model. Perhaps they feel it bears some historical precedent to their current Rega-like offering?

In the early 70's, Goldring extended the Goldring-Lenco range with a low-cost belt-drive turntable, the G101 which, coincidentally, was my first turntable. The G101 was a departure - belt drive, small low mass aluminium platter and weedy motor, and apparently sharing few parts with its elder brothers. Maybe it wasn't a Lenco at all?


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