I am longing to listen to my old vinyl collection. After some research, I find myself having to choose between Rega P3 and Goldring GR2. Both seem to be real value for money at my budget (around
You might also look at the Music Hall MMF5, but I would take the Rega P3 even if I had to put a $89 Shure M97HE on it short term.
Gia sou megale ! Does the Phase Linear have phono stahe build in and if yes,what kind,mm or mc ?
Yeia sou Yango,
The Phase Linear has a built-in MM phono stage. It's a 1970's model after all!
Pana,Panayiotis if i am not mistaken,if you are looking for that 70's analoque sound,go for a Grado signature gold.If onthe other hand you are looking for something more "analytical",go for a shure m97ed.I have the Grado but not the shure.The best shure i ever got was the m95ed mkii.Their main difference is the grado is "warmer" the shure a tad more analytical but at the same time more "steely" in its sound.You gould allways go for a mc cartridge but that would involve a step-up transformer.
Rega has changed their table since I sold them but traditionally Grados and Regas have a problem with hum pickup from the Rega motor. The Rega arm and any Grado make a good sounding combination but, should you decide to go this route, I would expect a guarantee from the seller that the combination will work well in relation to hum pick up.
I would suggest the Rega table as your best choice. It's a classic that will be worth its selling price when it comes to resale, should that ever be an issue. There are plenty of Rega clones out there, but they never fetch the same resale as the original. However, Regas have a particular sound quality I would suggest you investigate before making your decision. It's not so much about getting the best table for the money but rather about getting the best table for your music and system. Regas tend to run slightly fast, which can give a very lively presentation to the music but can also drive some people crazy. This seems to be a particular problem for people who have been listening to CD's for years and now find their favorite songs sound "different" when played on the Rega. If you have perfect pitch, you will not like a Rega. Classical music listeners can find the speed problems a bit bothersome since 440Hz is now about 445Hz when playing on a Rega. There are plenty of reviews of the Rega to determine whether its idiosyncracies are right for your taste. Read and, if possible, listen to the table before you buy.
Either table you list is an unsuspended model and will require a decent support to work to its best advantage. If you haven't factored in the cost of a wall shelf or other such support, expect to spend some money on a shelf or table of some sort. The difference between a Rega on a wall shelf vs. sitting on the middle shelf of an enclosed cabinet (or other less suitable location) are quite audible and should not be taken lightly.
If the Grado won't work in the table you choose, I would look at an inexpensive Ortofon or Audio Technica. The Ortofon OM-5 is a standard for many OEM Rega arms but the OM series is really too light for the arm to work well. I believe Ortofon still sells the VMS series and, like the OM series, you can upgrade the cartridge performance by upgrading only the stylus assembly.
Upgrading the Rega arm with an aftermarket counterweight is well worth the money.
Great post, Jan.
Pana, his advice is terrific.
Thanks to all for the feedback. I really appreciate your taking the time forthis.
The sad truth is that the more I read about the subject, the more confused I get. I've read just about everything, and more than once: that the Rega P3 is the best value for money, that Regas run fast, that Regas are exquisite, that the P3 suffers from motor hum (especially with Grado cartridges), that Grado cartridges go great with the P3, that P3's outdo far more expensive turntables, that Regas accept a vast array of cartridges, that Regas only really accept Rega cartridges, that P3s are a myth... Everything!
I don't know what to believe any more: there is a lot of praise but also a significant number of bad experiences- in fact the lack of consensus is impressive!
Thus, the most sound advice (thanks Jan) is to try to listen to one. Easier said than done. There is only one dealer over here who gets a limited number of tables a few times a year and does not have a display model. Naturally, he swears by them. But I've become so suspicious now, that I am shelving the whole project, until, perhaps, I can listen to a used P3 for sale to get some feeling about it, if the owner lets me...
True, not all digital recordings are great, but I think there are many good ones and I am used to a clear smooth sound. So I am very distrustful of potential hums and high pitches! Such is life.
For what it's worth. I upgraded from a Pro-ject Debut II to a Goldring GR-2 and the difference was a lot more than I expected. I can't speak for the Rega P2/3, because I haven't heard them, but I am more than pleased with my GR-2. But in the end it all comes down to the sound you like best. Listen to everything you can in your area, and whatever your decision, ENJOY.
Strangely enough, I've just ended up with a new Goldring GR2 and a second hand Rega P3 (probably about 5 years old). In the UK, the GR2 is discounted to silly money as it is, I understand, being discontinued (if I'm allowed to say - www.superfi.com have it for