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No this is not a slip mat, but you can still call it that if you want.
Here is the deal. The industry started using the term slip mat in the DJ world. As the term got traction, it carried over to the non-DJ side of things. A slip mat, by use and definition, will allow slippage to occur between the platter and the record. The mat is sandwiched between the two surfaces, the same as any platter mat. However, this slippage allows the DJ to hold the record in place while the platter still spins. I can assure you that this technique is not used in the home listening environment (unless a child or a cat gets a hold of it and we have all been there). Without that "slippery" surface between the album and the platter, the platter would want to keep the record spinning and the DJ's hand would want make the platter stop. What a conflict. Now take that into the home listening setting and, believe me, you want that album secure, stable, and connected to that platter. While it won't allow you to play DJ at home, it will create a much more enjoyable listening experience. So the bottom line is while some are called slip mats, not all mats are slip mats. Additionally, we don't always want a slip mat and that is the case more often than not. So listen, you can call this a slip mat, but don't expect it to slip.
So why cork?!
The Cork mat is suitable for all turntables as it avoids static load and produces less noise. It is an affordable and excellent substitute for either a felt mat or a rubber mat. One of the benefits of using a cork mat is the damping of resonances from metal turntable platters and therefore, producing less noise. Cork mats are also cheaper and thus perfect if you have a budget to follow.
With a cork mat, resonances are damped more effectively than felt, they keep dust away, and they have also enough contact to avoid static and slipping. The cork provides just enough dampening while staying thin, roughly 1/8-inch. This is ideal as it does not change the position of the record over a felt or other than mat, which keeps things where they should be.
Common felt mats give a smooth contact between record and platter but this has the disadvantage with static and stability. This means that felt mats often collect a lot of dust which can be then transferred to the record and additionally do not provide enough friction between the platter ( see above, remember) to create a secure and stable platform. For this reason, common felt mats typically do not perform well with metal and acrylic platters as the damping ability is very limited and record stability is poor.
Thick rubber mats can also be problematic as they over dampen the record and have an isolation effect which leaves the static on the record and in some cases, a decreased dynamic range. Dynamic range is the possible volume of sounds in any piece of music we listen to. While we don't want the bad outside noise to get louder, we also don't want limit what we were meant to hear. Over dampening caused by rubber mats can certainly cause that. Additionally, we all know what static means to our ears.
So the conclusion between these options is simple. While felt doesn't over dampen, it can create a large amount of unwanted noises. With rubber, it is good at reducing some of those bad outside noises, but it can also start to limit what we were meant to hear. This brings us to cork, which is a magical, natural product that brings us the best of both worlds..... without breaking the bank.
Our cork is perfectly selected for this and is not just standard stuff. The density, composition, and construction have all been taken into account. This makes it a very useful and cost-effective way to improve the sound and have less bad noise by static and dust.
You can hear the difference!