Calling all Turntable Experts ...

Discussion in 'Playback Devices' started by Neil White, Jan 17, 2004.

  1. Neil White

    Neil White Supporting Actor

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    It's been 10 years since I owned a turntable and I want to get back in the vinyl game. Can someone please recommend a decent turntable in the under $200 bracket. I believe Technics is my best bet brand wise. I've done a little looking around but to be honest, I don't know what I am looking for. The turntable will not get used a whole lot - just occasional use.

    It will mate with a Denon 3803 (if 6ave would ever get them back in stock) and eventually Paradigm Monitor 7's etc ...

    Many thanks

    N
     
  2. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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    Here ya go - here's a used Pro-Ject on eBay currently going for $37. Pro-Ject turntables, even used ones, simply blow Technics' offerings away - for build quality, for sound, for reliability, Technics simply cannot compare:

    http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll...&category=3283
     
  3. Neil White

    Neil White Supporting Actor

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    Just one suggestion? Either my budget means I'm in cloud cuckoo land or no one else has any suggestions ...

    N
     
  4. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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  5. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    Do you google?

    Try Googling Red Trumpet and Needle Doctor. Both sites have a lot of new TT's. They will be more than $200, but will give you some ideas to look for in used models.

    The two that come to mind (new for around $300) are from Pro-Ject and Music Hall.

    I recently re-activated my B&O 1800 (its been doing nothing for +10 years) after adding a NAD phono pre-amp to me rig.

    I thought that I would probably fire it up just to see what vinyl sounds like through my system, with the intention of buying a new TT.

    Well, truthfully, I am pretty happy with it. Good vinyl (Dire Straights Love Over Gold) sounds fabulous.

    Almost all of my vinyl is mint. Back in the day when I was buying it, I would normally take it out of the sleeve the day I bought it, clean it, tape it, and then normally not play it again. So, its all pretty good.

    Interestingly, good stuff sounds good (Dire Straights) and crap (Kiss Alive II) sounds like crap. Other stuff is all over the map. Hendrix's Cry of Love has some tracks that sound poor, other sound good, which is what I would expect since that album was made up of mostly unfinished stuff, which was not completed before he died.

    Sorry to have gone off on a tangent, but I am really enjoying digging through all me vinyl and re-living my youth. I expect you will be doing the same when you get your TT.

    BGL
     
  6. Marvin

    Marvin Screenwriter

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    Neil,
    More likely it's just that the turntable experts were all busy on Saturday. I'm no expert but I have a Sony turntable in that price range, which is good enough for my occasional use purposes. It's an earlier verision of this model: http://www.crutchfield.com/cgi-bin/S...=0&cc=01&avf=N

    However, Technics seems to get the most recommendations on this forum in that price range so I'd probably get one of those if I were buying one now. Probably this one, though the cartrdige is extra (they also have a cheaper one): http://www.crutchfield.com/cgi-bin/S...=0&cc=01&avf=N

    Denon also makes a couple of turntables in that price range
    though I don't know much about them. http://www.crutchfield.com/cgi-bin/S...=0&cc=01&avf=N
     
  7. Neil White

    Neil White Supporting Actor

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    Thanks to all for the assistance. I will check out all the links provided and continue my research.

    Dire Straits - Love Over Gold: You know, Telegraph Road is an outstanding track and of course Private Investigations is only really good with all the pops and crackles of vinyl [​IMG] . I've had that LP for years and cannot wait to hear it again. For grins, I'll be A/B'ing some LPs to CDs. It's been so long since I played LPs I'm intrigued to listen to the fidelity differences.

    Thanks again all.

    N
     
  8. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    I literally forgot what a fabulous album that was (tuthfully, I forgot that I OWNED it!). And this LP was so clean that they only time I really heard any clicks and pops was maybe once or twice between tracks on side two (side one is continuous).

    I don't have it on CD, but I can't imagine that there is an LP in my collection that will better it.

    I can see it now.....amazed by how good my existing TT sounds with good vinyl, I descend into the swirling vortex of analog worship. Sell me car for a new TT, SET Tube Amp, $5000 cartridge, start buying 180 gram vinyl, will secretly plotting to kill the person that invented digital!

    Hey, at least I already have most of the software that I want!

    BGL
     
  9. Neil White

    Neil White Supporting Actor

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    What's the pros and cons of belt drive versus direct drive? I assume direct drive is potentially more accurate?

    N
     
  10. Brian L

    Brian L Cinematographer

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    I think the purests will say that belt drive is preferred because it isolates the platter from any possible vibration transmitted through the motor.

    Whether or not that is audible is another story. I would think intuitively that a direct drive table would have better speed accuracy, but thats just a guess.

    I think most of the mega dollar tables that I see are belt drive, but that may be an over generalization.

    BGL
     
  11. Neil White

    Neil White Supporting Actor

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    Thanks Brian. That was what I was surmising too.

    N
     
  12. Chuck Schilling

    Chuck Schilling Stunt Coordinator

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    Brian, you're exactly right. Turntable freaks are all about isolation - the idea is to have as little attached to the platter/spindle as possible. All I can say is that I'm very happy with my Pro-Ject turntable, and think they're exceptional values.
     
  13. PeterK

    PeterK Supporting Actor

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    Just drive around until you see a sign that says "garage sale this way." Thats how my dad got all four of his turntables. And if one breaks, you throw it away and plug in the next one. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  14. Dave Simpson

    Dave Simpson Second Unit

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    Neil,

    I think Peter has this one nailed. Garage sales, thrift shops, pawn shops, flea markets (higher prices, here) are possibly where it's at, man. You might be shocked to see the quality of TTs some people are dying to unload ('tho there'll be no shortage of crap, as well). Garage sale season here last summer yielded for me a Realistic (don't laff; best TT I've ever owned!) direct-drive model (needed cosmetic clean-up only), and a Sansui belt-drive unit (a cat may have pissed on this one, but again, cosmetic clean-up only). Both turn-tables, roughly greater than 20 years old, cost me only five bucks apiece. Canadian. For info on vintage TTs and other older gear, see our pals at AudioKarma.
    Best of luck, and cheers.

    DS.
     
  15. Chu Gai

    Chu Gai Lead Actor

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    How's about a Stanton turntable with digital outs? For example, the STR8-80X at a street price of ~$200.
     
  16. Neil White

    Neil White Supporting Actor

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    Again, thanks for all the recommendations and suggestions. My search is still ongoing and this is all a big help ...

    N
     
  17. David S

    David S Stunt Coordinator

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    Music Hall 2.1 may be a little over $200, but a good player.
     

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