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ortizian
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Joined: May 4 2022 - 10:59pm
Advice on TT sound with new amp

I have a Pro-Ject Debut Carbon EVO with an acrylic platter, upgraded power supply, and an Ortofon 3m Blue, and for my amp, I just bought a NAD C388. My new speakers are Totem Signature 1s. I also have a SONOS connect with two 5s and 2 One SL. My question is this when I stream through the Sonos and Totems the sound is amazing, these speakers are incredible.

When I play records through just the Totems I have to turn the volume on the amp past 50%, closer to 70% to get good clear sound, but it doesn't come close to the clarity of the streaming. Is there something I should be doing to make the sound clearer at a lower volume?

I tried to run the TT the my Pro-Ject preamp and that sounded awful. I bought okay cables - not sure where to start. Thanks for any input.

SAS Audio
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Poor LP sound

Hi Ortizian,

I don't see a phono stage listed, but then I am not up on product listings.

Very simplified, a phono gain stage is an "application"/circuit that corrects the recording RIAA
equalization emphasis applied to an LP during the recording process. When recording above 1khz
reference, the higher the frequency, the more the musical signal amplitude is increased.
(approximately 19db at 20khz, eventually leveling off at approximately 50khz).

The amplitude below 1khz reference is decreased to approximately -19db at 20hz.

There is more involved, but let's keep it simple. Without the RIAA de-emphasis application during playback,
the highs will be quite bright while the lows will be almost missing.

This "application" is a high gain circuit which might use tubes, or discrete transistors, or an integrated
circuit chip. It can get complicated, but a de- emphasis application/component/circuit is necessary
for proper flat response musical output.

I hope this helps O, and all the best.

steve

hoytis
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Joined: May 19 2021 - 10:37am
Vinyl playback will always

Vinyl playback will always require more turns of the volume knob than digital, that's the nature of analog limitations (i.e. pressings can only be so loud before needles have trouble tracking). Digital can record at much higher amplitudes without limitations.

But what you're describing makes me think something is awry, because clarity should not be an issue. So you initially plugged the TT directly into the PHONO input on the NAD and it didn't sound clear? Fuzzy? Too bright? Muffled? I wonder if your cart is misaligned.

Then you plugged the TT into an external phono stage and that went into the LINE input of the amp? And it sounded horrible? That doesn't make any sense, unless you plugged that stage into the PHONO input on the amp. What Pro-Ject preamp are you using?

ortizian
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I think I figured it out

Thank you both for your input, I appreciated it and I'm glad I didn't let the fear of sounding dumb keep me from asking. I started with the advice that knobs will have to go higher with vinyl and not think of it as a bad thing. I connected my TT to my Pro-Ject phono preamp (box S2) but this time, rather than connecting through the phone plugin, I connected to Line 2. This made all the difference, the sound is so much cleaner and closer to what I heard at the shop. I don't have any acoustic padding at home so I know I won't totally get that sound, yet! I also adjusted the impedance and capacitance settings on the Box S2 to match the 2M Blue.

I think now all that's left is some tinkering until I dial it in to find that perfect sound. Then I suppose it's time to save for upgrades.

hoytis
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Great

Glad you found the source of your issue. Yep...no need to plug a phono stage into a phono input on an amp. That means you're bumping up the phono signal from the TT to line level twice. The function of the Pro-Ject box essentially already exists inside the NAD (phono input). You have to use one or the other. Cheers! Now keep the vinyl spinning!

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