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rmeyer52
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Primer on turntables

As someone who is relativelty new to hi-fi I was wondering if some board members could post a short primer on turntables and vinyl. For example some of the things I am interested in learning about: brands to look at- how much to invest in a cartridge-difference between 180g and 200g vinyl and what vinyl provides as opposed to CD's. I am thinking about vinyl but don't know where to start?

tandy
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Re: Primer on turntables

Hi Rich,

Well, the Dual TTs were good in their day with a good tonearm, as well as the Linn-Sondeks. The Linns will require a tonearm, but an SME is an excellent one to start with, and for not much money on Audiogon. Of course there are others.

A grado black or green phono cartridge for 40 bucks new is surprisingly good and would do well with an SME arm.

The Grado midrange seems quite quite accurate and the soundstage, depth and width seems to be between a typical MM and MC cartridge. Nice all around cartridge, esp to begin with.

With associated good equipment, the tonal qualities of the instruments are very natural, like being at the event.

Critical adjustments are vertical angle, azimuth, tracking angle, and tracking force.


Quote:
As someone who is relativelty new to hi-fi I was wondering if some board members could post a short primer on turntables and vinyl. For example some of the things I am interested in learning about: brands to look at- how much to invest in a cartridge-difference between 180g and 200g vinyl and what vinyl provides as opposed to CD's. I am thinking about vinyl but don't know where to start?

bobedaone
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Re: Primer on turntables

I really enjoy Rega turntables. I'm excited about the new P3-24, which has been upgraded extensively from the outgoing P3 2000. Some people don't care for the "Rega sound", although I'm not entirely sure what that is, other than "right". I don't know what your budget may be if you decide you want to try analog, but if it's anything under $3000, look up nearest Rega dealer.
I admittedly am not very knowledgeable about cartridges, but you probably don't want to spend more than a couple hundred dollars when you're starting out. I think 301's Grado recommendation is a good one, although I've heard they sometimes have issues with Rega (?). In any event, Rega carts are designed to work with Rega tables, and they certainly do. If you decide on Rega, staying with one of their cartridges might be a wise choice.
What vinyl provides in relation to a CD varies from one recording to another, but the short answer is: Vinyl records have smoother highs, allowing for very pleasurable extended listening. There is also a higher level of realism. I can't describe it reliably in audio-speak, but vinyl gives you more of a "you are there" feeling than CD. As far as I'm concerned, nothing compares to a well-recorded , clean pressing on a nice turntable. I'll be buying a 'table as soon as my finances allow.

ohfourohnine
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Re: Primer on turntables

If you're really interested in a primer on turntables, you might want to start with chapter nine of Robert Harley's Complete Guide to High End Audio. With the material there as background you'll probably be better able to deal with the preferences some of us might offer.

You say you're thinking about vinyl, do you own a significant amount of vinyl now? Approximately what kind of expenditure do you contemplate for an analog source for your system? Have you perused the catalogs/web sites of MusicDirect and/or Acoustic Sounds? They both offer a wide array of fine quality analog source stuff at nearly every price level.

59mga
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Re: Primer on turntables

Check out Music Hall and Pro-Ject TTs...prices range from, about $300 to $1,500. Sumiko has some nice, affordable cartridges starting at $50.

All the gear that others have mentioned is good equipment. You can get a "beginer" set-up for under $400. Keep us posted.

rmeyer52
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Re: Primer on turntables

Thank you all for your help. Well it seems that my Arcam Solo does not have a phone preamp connection and I don't want to upgrade to an integrated amp yet as my Arcam is just sounding too nice. Any ideas?

bobedaone
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Re: Primer on turntables

If you just want to get your feet wet, the NAD PP-2 is a nice little phono preamp.

ohfourohnine
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Re: Primer on turntables

Go with the Bellari VP129 Phono Pre ($250) and you'll have great analog sound from your current amp, and a component you can keep in the system when you move to another amp. Many of the good entry level turntables come mounted with very respectable cartridges. If you don't go that way, the Shure M97xE at $95 will, like the Bellari Pre, satisfy you longer than less expensive carts.

u671296
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Re: Primer on turntables

Unless you like distorted sound, scratches and clicks I would advise don't bother with a cheap turntable/cartridge. Vinyl is much better and more involving than CD, but only if the TT, arm and cartridge are good. If I was you I wouldn't bother if they cost much less than $800. My last system did and I used my vinyl rarely. My current TT cost $1200 and the benefits of vinyl are at least clear.

Jan Vigne
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Re: Primer on turntables

Look for a pre-owned $1200 table set up you can afford.

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