Setting up a turntable

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Wilson W, Jan 25, 2003.

  1. Wilson W

    Wilson W Agent

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    Hope someone here still listen to vinyl.

    After I have set up the tone arm so that it is level (or parallel to the platter), do I still need to adjust the angle of the stylus so that it contact the record in a certain angle?

    I think I read that it should be adjusted, but then there's really no way that can be done. The head shell is fixed so I can't change the angle unless I put a shim between the cartridge and the head shell, which sound like more damaging than good.

    My whole turntable was pre-setup by the store and I have left it that way forever. Been listening to more vinyl lately and hope that I have the rig set up properly.

    Appreciate any input, thanks.
     
  2. Lin Park

    Lin Park Second Unit

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    I do think you need to adjust the angle that the stylus strikes the album but it sounds like you can't do that on your setup.

    I don't think there are many lurking around this forum that still use vinyl but I do know of some and they frequent here often enough to see this. You might consider posting at Audio Asylum and also tell us the make and model of your table, arm, and stylus.

    Lin
     
  3. Wilson W

    Wilson W Agent

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    My analogue rig:

    turntable: VPI HW-19 Jr
    arm: Audioquest PT-6
    cartridge: Sumiko Blue Point Special

    It sounds quite decent most of the time, but sometimes I think the sound is a bit thin. But generally, it's quite detail and sweet.

    I was afraid if I start to temper with it I would make it worse.
     
  4. Philip Hamm

    Philip Hamm Lead Actor

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    Personally if it's not a P-Mount turntable I would bring it to an audio shop. Vinyl is used often enough that there are plenty of shops that still work on it expertly. If the table is set up wrong, it will sound bad and damage records. Neither of those is a good prospect.
     
  5. Lin Park

    Lin Park Second Unit

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    That's not a bad rig at all - I'd follow Philip's advice and take it somewhere to get it setup precisely before doing anymore listening.

    Good Luck,
    Lin
     
  6. Khoa Tran

    Khoa Tran Supporting Actor

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    i use my old sansui table, and it's been like that since the 70's so i dont know [​IMG]
     
  7. Rick_Brown

    Rick_Brown Second Unit

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    The absolute angle of the stylus to the vinyl is called VTA for "Vertical Tracking Angle". Most high-end phono users say that minute adjustments in this angle can have a profound effect on the sound. Too low a VTA sounds muddy; too high sounds too thin. They say when you get it right the sound seems to snap into focus.

    You have made a good start by making the tone arm parallel to the platter (better is parallel to a record on the platter).
     
  8. Allan Jayne

    Allan Jayne Cinematographer

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    If I remember correctly, if you are looking at the tone arm from the outside, that is with the pivot to the right, the stylus tip should be angled down to the right at 15 degrees from vertical and a line from pivot to stylus tip should be parallel with the record surface. Since the stylus tip is rounded where it contacts the record groove, I can't see why a difference in the stylus angle I mentioned would make any difference in the sound but some experts say it will. If the tone arm is angled down considerably, there is more wow if the record is warped and the tone arm rises and falls with each revolution. Viewed from the front, the stylus tip should be vertical. Viewed from above the stylus tip, if elliptical, should be perpendicular to the groove although standard tone arms cannot maintain this from beginning to end of the record. (That is why linear tracking tone arms were invented) You cannot see the angle of the stylus tip because it is so small, so you hope that the stylus was manufactured correctly and align things so the stylus shank is tangent to (perpendicular to perpendicular to) the record groove.

    The instructions for high end phono cartridges show how to put shims in the tone arm head so the cartridge and stylus have the correct angles.

    The last word I heard from the experts is that tracking force should be towards the maximum specified for the cartridge. They said that the stylus bouncing in the groove due to too little tracking force is more damaging than the wear from too great a tracking force.

    Video hints:
    http://members.aol.com/ajaynejr/video.htm
     

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