I just bought a Kress spindle which has small collets, variable speed, and seems to run much quieter than a 1/2" router.
Here's an Ebay link: http://cgi.ebay.com/Kress-800-FME-Mi...item3367398d80
I bought the 110 volt version for use in the US. The 240 volt version is cheaper.
I note that an ATC is available for it. Something that I'm not interested in but which seems to indicate that the Kress is a serious spindle.