You are here

Log in or register to post comments
Welshsox
Welshsox's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: Dec 13 2006 - 7:27pm
Upgrading Marantz TT15

Hi

Its time for an upgrade on my TT, i do like the Marantz ( with Virtuoso wood ) and the sound it gives me but im looking for a bit more. Id like a little bit more detail but what i really want is more scale and dynamics, i want it to sound bigger, fuller with more emotion. I know this is a tall order and the biggest issue with buying a TT is that im limited in audtioning and also no home trials are possible as with speakers/amps etc.

My thoughts at the moment are

VPI classic with cartridge to be decided
Rega P7 or P9, but i dont like the write ups of the Rega cartridges

For cartridges i like the idea of the Shelters or the Ortofon moving coils

Any thoughts appreciated

Alan

struts
struts's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 3 hours ago
Joined: Feb 1 2007 - 12:02pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

Budget?

Welshsox
Welshsox's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: Dec 13 2006 - 7:27pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

$2-4 k after trade in,

So im thinking $3K for table and $1k ish for cartridge, im happy to think used TT but not a used cartridge.

Alan

JohnMichael
JohnMichael's picture
Offline
Last seen: 4 months 4 days ago
Joined: Jan 30 2007 - 2:09pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

I have no idea what electronics you are using but I recently enjoyed much of the improvements you are seeking by upgrading my phono stage.

Welshsox
Welshsox's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: Dec 13 2006 - 7:27pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

PS audio GCPH phono stage
Anthem 225
Dynaudio focus 220's

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

Limited play time with for me, but I have been enamored of the VPI CLassic, for sure.

We got a change to play with VPI arms and measuring azimuth and that baby is really plug and play! Set-up is a dream.

The table seems to have plenty of that "PRaT," too.

I also think it is VERY hard to top a Michell Gyrodec in that price category.

____

Questions about your current table:

Assuming it's the TT 15S1?

I can't tell from the pics, so I am a bit pessimistic...can you use two belts?

I haven't researched, I wonder if Clearuadio could get you a new motor spindle to add a belt.

Do you use their record clamp?

Perhaps a reflex clamp could help, like the Sota clamp.

One of the aftermarket turntable mats may make a big difference on this table, too.

Clearuadio has some bearing upgrades, too, I think.

May even be worthwhile looking into your speed management with an external power supply.

Welshsox
Welshsox's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: Dec 13 2006 - 7:27pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

Mats sound intriguing, any suggestions ?

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15


Quote:
Mats sound intriguing, any suggestions ?

Depending on the table (and I think even some reviewers have commented on this) acrylic platters, for some, seem to rob some of the dynamic of the music.

It may be that going with a 'less damped' mat may lively up your sound.

*Insert controversy disclaimer here.*

This one: Carbon Fiber mat is interesting, but a little costly. (They have a demo on sale for 100 bucks less.)

_____

To go ultra cheap as a fun project, Home Depot and Lowe's carry 12 inch round cork planter-supports that, for 6 bucks, you could play with, too! There, your platter clamp may be quite useful. (Remember to adjust your tonearm height!)

There are even people who make various patterns of cork 'dots' for LP support - again, a very cheap thing to audition.

Part of me wonders if your are just not an acrylic platter guy.

In your search, based on your platter, I would say to avoid "soft damping" platter mats, like the sorbothane models.

Spend some time with Google, and I'll keep looking for examples, too.

Welshsox
Welshsox's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: Dec 13 2006 - 7:27pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

In very simplistic terms you would think the acrylic platter would give a harder sound and the rubber mats would give a softer warmer in sound, in the same way the original LP12 was known for being warm yet the first real competition to it the Pink Triangle was known for being faster and more dynamic

Is it this easy ??

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15


Quote:
In very simplistic terms you would think the acrylic platter would give a harder sound and the rubber mats would give a softer warmer in sound, in the same way the original LP12 was known for being warm yet the first real competition to it the Pink Triangle was known for being faster and more dynamic

Is it this easy ??

Probably not that easy.

I have been searching for the article where MF talks a little about acrylic platters, but can't find it. I think it was either in a Clearaudio or even a review of the Marantz turntable - or it could have been in his column.

I'll keep looking.

(I still like the two belt idea if that is feasible with your table. I use two belts on my Michell.)

Welshsox
Welshsox's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: Dec 13 2006 - 7:27pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

Whats the two belts for ?

Ive never understood that sort of tweak, if the platter spins at the correct speed how does it matter how it does it ?

Of course i can understand platter material and the bearing having an effect but the belt ???

Alan

Jim Tavegia
Jim Tavegia's picture
Offline
Last seen: Never ago
Joined: Sep 1 2005 - 4:27pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

MF does comment on Acr platters in his P25 write up...
http://stereophile.com/turntables/309/index1.html

he liked the P25 for sure.

struts
struts's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 3 hours ago
Joined: Feb 1 2007 - 12:02pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15


Quote:
Whats the two belts for ?

Ive never understood that sort of tweak, if the platter spins at the correct speed how does it matter how it does it ?

Of course i can understand platter material and the bearing having an effect but the belt ???

Alan


I can think of a few possible reasons off the top of my head:

  • Average out unevenness in the belt(s)
  • Reduce elasticity (reduce 'hunting')
  • Improve contact with drive pulley/sub platter/platter
  • Reduce tension to lower resonant frequency
  • etc.

But I'm just speculating. I am personally of the 'less belt is more' school as espoused by the Nordic Concept Artist, Well Tempered Amadeus, Audiomeca Belladonna etc. The drive belt on my Artist is about the thickness of a human hair. Most motors produce far more energy than is needed to keep the platter rotating at a constant speed (I also subscribe to the related view that if the motor has enough torque to spin the platter up from rest it has too much) and that energy has to go somewhere. It follows that the more belt there is connecting the motor to the platter the more energy will be transferred to the platter, from where it risks being transferred to the stylus.

Anyway, I'm an electronic engineer not a mechanical one so what do I know. As far as I'm concerned everyone is entitled to subscribe to their own 'belt religion'

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

I think part of why I like the two belt 'trick' is sort of an Art Dudley thing.

Maybe like a little extra rubber on the road: Better/faster communication between the motor and the platter...better "speed coupling" to make up a term.

There seems to be a general trend in this direction - even the higher end Clearaudios (Marantz' OEM) have been adding belts and some other brands have evolved to using thicker belts, almost like big O-rings.

I think the belt/platter relationship is an intriguing one. Plus, it's cheap!

My table's motor pulley is machined for two belts, and has grooves on the platter to line up different heights on the suspension...and there's another interesting topic: Which is better, a smooth platter or a grooved one for the belts?

Another table I have has a smooth platter outer surface and uses a tape-like belt, while the Michell uses a round belt.

For your Marantz, maybe a new or different belt may be something to play with!

struts
struts's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 3 hours ago
Joined: Feb 1 2007 - 12:02pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15


Quote:
There seems to be a general trend in this direction - even the higher end Clearaudios (Marantz' OEM) have been adding belts...


I strongly suspect the reason the higher-end Clearaudios (and other similar decks) have been adding belts is because their platters have been getting heavier and heavier and they need the extra grip to transfer enough torque to spin them up to speed.

Personally I'm a big fan of Pierre Lurne whose philosophy could kind of be paraphrased "it's not how much mass but what you do with it that counts". There's a great article about his turntable here which goes into the design philosopy in quite some detail. It also serves as a great backgrounder for anyone generally interested in some of the theory and practice of turntable design.

Buddha
Buddha's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 9 months ago
Joined: Sep 8 2005 - 10:24am
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

So, at what point does this "extra grip" become a virtue?

struts
struts's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 weeks 3 hours ago
Joined: Feb 1 2007 - 12:02pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

Well, see I don't really see how it ever becomes a virtue. I'm guessing it's a necessity - to provide enough friction to transfer sufficient torque to overcome the inertia of the massive platter (without increasing belt tension which increases bearing friction and raises resonant frequency).

To keep the platter spinning only requires enough energy to counteract the friction of the bearing plus the drag of the stylus. Any more energy than this is by definition surplus to requirements and therefore IMO shouldn't be transmitted into the system in the first place. To spin the platter up to speed it is necessary to overcome the rotational inertia of the platter (which rises in proportion to its mass) plus the friction of the bearing. If the bearing is doing its job this amount of energy will be several orders of magnitude greater than that required to keep it spinning, and any belt system capable of transferring it is therefore IMO just overdimensioned for the task at hand.

Multiple belts certainly look cool and (as I said above) may have other benefits, however I'm in the 'less is more' camp here. I vote for as thin a belt as possible as loose as it can be and still get the job done.

Welshsox
Welshsox's picture
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 7 months ago
Joined: Dec 13 2006 - 7:27pm
Re: Upgrading Marantz TT15

I tend to agree that sometimes less is more, having to make something bigger, heavier etc is something that society seems to automatically assume is better.

Im currently working on obtaining a Rega P9, i am taking a leap of faith on the sound but ive always liked everything Rega ive heard.

Alan

  • X
    Enter your Stereophile.com username.
    Enter the password that accompanies your username.
    Loading