Vinyl info: help

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Mike Broadman, Sep 25, 2002.

  1. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    As a relative youngin music fan, I am woefully ignorant about vinyl. I mean hopelessly, utterly lacking in any info. Alls I know is that big black round thingies spin and make music somehow.

    Anybody have any good links for me? I don't know if I'll actually buy a turntable, but I'd at least like to have some basic info and, eventually, a more advanced understanding. Also, resources on where to start, how to listen, and how to basically go about checking out turntables for someone who only listens to digital music and has a hometheater setup (ie, no seperate amps and speakers).

    Of course I'm doing my own searching, but I'd appreciate any nice links you guys can provide.

    Thanks!
     
  2. Jack Keck

    Jack Keck Second Unit

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    Mike,
    Try www.harmonicdiscord.com and www.audiokarma.org. Both sites have dedicated turntable fora.
    IF you decied to get a turntable, GET THE BEST ONE YOU CAN AFFORD. I understand that I was shouting, bult that advice needs to be shouted. If you search this site, you might come across my own posts where I detailed how much difference a better tt makes, even with a mediocre cartridge. Of course, I have no problem recommending Rega tts and Grado cartridges. If you buy new from a dealer, they should be able to set it up properly for you. that's why I never really learned to do it myself.
    When I bought my tt, belt drive was generally cond=sidered to be better than direct drive. I don't know if that's still the conventional wisdom or not. I bought my tt in 1979.
    Be aware that the cartridge, no matter what kind or brand you get, has a lower output than a cd player, tape deck, vcr or DVD player. This is why many receivers have built in phono pre-amps and why you'll need a pre-amp for your turn table if your receiver or pre-pro doesn't have one.
    I am no vinylphile, but I got into this nonsense when records were the standard for high fidelity sound reproduction and tapes were for convenience. I have my tt and amp hooked up to my computer for burning cd-rs.
    Even if you don't find that you like the sound of analogue, or don't like the hassle of playing and cleaning records, even a cheap tt will allow you to sample music that you might not want to pay a cd price for. in other words, you might be able to find a used record for a buck or two that you might want to see if it's for you without investing $15 or whatever in the cd version. A better tt will simply make it sound better.[​IMG]
    Happy hunting.
     
  3. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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    Mike, this link shows 100's of turntables, pictures and info too.
    http://www.geocities.com/Hollywood/Hills/4133/ttg.html
    This link below is to a great forum run by the vinyl mastering guru, Steve Hoffman, there is plenty of good vinyl talk there, much to learn. In fact he is now mastering 25 of the best jazz classics to be cut at 45RPM, they will sound better than ever when Steve is finished with them. I am 48th on the list to receive these and I can't wait for the first ones to arrive(next month)If you are a Jazz fan(and I know you are)these are a must![​IMG]
    http://www.stevehoffman.tv/forums/fo....php?forumid=2
    Here is another analog link.
    http://www.aca.gr/links_analogue.htm
    Another good resource is this forum http://www.audioasylum.com/audio/vinyl/bbs.html
    Those will help get you on track, I have many online record dealers I can offer when and if you are ready. Good luck! [​IMG]
     
  4. Jeremy Hegna

    Jeremy Hegna Supporting Actor

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    Hi Mike,

    I took the vinyl leap 6 months ago and I will never look back. Buying mint albums for two or three bucks is a bargain, IMO. I got my information from a few on this board and many on Audio Asylum.

    I will agree, that if you make the "serious" jump into vinyl, you will need to buy what you can afford. BUT, if you would like to experiment...pick up an older DD Technics TT, spend some time with it and pick up an album or two. It's a bunch of fun and the tweaking is endless.

    The needledoctor.com is an excellent place to buy hardware.


    Good Luck,

    Jeremy
     
  5. mike_decock

    mike_decock Supporting Actor

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    I good resource is the Audio Asylum Vinyl FAQ section.
    In general, buy a decent TT, a good cartridge and a phono preamp (if your receiver doesn't have one). My current setup is a Music Hall MMF2.1 ($299), Shure V15VMxR ($250) and a Pro-Ject Phono Box ($120).
    Initial setup isn't all that hard. Just follow some of the instructions on the website, be patient and enjoy. It's a little fiddly at first, but I find it to be FAR more rewarding to CDs.
    The first great thing about vinyl is that a well set up TT (even a humble setup like mine) can easily blow away a similarly priced CD player (IMO at least).
    The other great thing is that you can build a vinyl collection fast and cheap. Just go around to Goodwill stores and snag up records for a buck a piece. Tell people you work with that you're into vinyl. One of my colleagues said I could come over and take any of his records since he was done transferring them to CD. I walked out with over 120 records for free!
    I'm having so much fun listening to vinyl that I hardly ever listen to CDs anymore. I'm anxiously awaiting my new VPI Scout TT and AES PH-1 tube phono amp [​IMG].
    -Mike...
     
  6. Christos_S

    Christos_S Auditioning

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    Mike,
    Click the link below to have a look on most of the t/t's models available around the Globe:
    http://aca.gr/turntable.htm [​IMG]
    These analogue pages are included in the web-site of the Audiophile Club of Athens (the link http://aca.gr/links_analogue.htm , given by Frank_S included...[​IMG] )
    Enjoy the (true) music
     
  7. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Thanks, folks.

    It seems like some turntables are sold with the cartridges and arms, some without... they come in all configurations.

    My first priority to upgrade my HT is a pair of surround speakers, so I'll do that before I even think about getting a TT. I'm just interested in poking around for now... slowly, until I can afford it...

    If I can hook it up directly to my receiver, that would get me started more quickly.

    I'll try to find an actual store that sells them so I can look around. It helps when you actually see and touch a piece of equipment to get familiar with it.
     
  8. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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  9. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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  10. mike_decock

    mike_decock Supporting Actor

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  11. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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  12. mike_decock

    mike_decock Supporting Actor

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  13. Mattias_ka

    Mattias_ka Supporting Actor

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    Mike Broadman, Even IF your receiver has a phono pre-amplifier it can be a BIG upgrade with a separate phono amplifier for 50-70$. Even a good receiver that have a phono input the quality of the RIAA are low. I would say that a 1000$ receiver has average a riaa that cost max 10$, and to use a separate RIAA that cost 50$ will be a big upgrade.
    Frank_S and mike_decock, I agree with you both. I did skip digital already in 1992, after I listen to a Linn LP12. I could not understand that vinyl could sound so good and better than digital in my ears. In 1997 I got into tube's also, and i must say that vinyl and tube's really sounds like REAL music. So now I will do a BIG upgrade to a VPI TNT HR-X or SME 30/2. The amplifier are I pleased with:
    [​IMG]
     
  14. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Stupid Question of the Week: What are tubes?

    I was in my local audio shop picking up new rear speakers (sorry, folks, but I'm not gonna give up on digital and/or surround music) and checked out a nice lookin' turntable. It was labeled as MM and it was a series 7. I forgot what the MM stood for- anyone know what I'm talking about? I'd love to read up on it. They were selling it for $1000, which is what I've been expecting to pay.
     
  15. mike_decock

    mike_decock Supporting Actor

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    Tubes are Vacuum Tubes. Before the transistor was invented, tubes were used for everything. Here's a cool little page called How a Vacuum Tube Works from Svetlana, a popular tube manufacturer.
    Sounds like the turntable you saw was the Music Hall MMF7. I've heard a lot of positive feedback from owners of that table. They say it's easy to set up and sounds great right out of the box. I'd say the biggest competitor to the MMF7 in that price range is the Rega P3 which runs about $750 without cartridge.
    Also, don't forget that you need a phono preamp if your receiver/preamp doesn't have a built in phono stage.
    =Mike...
     
  16. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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  17. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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  18. Mike Broadman

    Mike Broadman Producer

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    Thanks, Frank. That was actually quite helpful. I've looked quickly through that site before but the technical mumbo-jumbo and lack of agreement on anything at all ever scared me away. However, I was surprised at how everyone was touting this TT. Everyone's agreeing on its excellent sound.

    The one thing that there seems to be confusion about is how easy it is to maintain it and set it up. I would prefer something as easy as possible, and it seems to be marketed that way. If that's the case, this TT is looking better and better.
     
  19. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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    Mike, I own a Rega P3 and love it. I have read and heard from my dealer who sells both Music Hall and Rega that build quality on the Rega is better. Soundwise I cannot say, I have never heard a MusicHall but since it comes set up with a cart., it is an easy way to get into vinyl.
    Make sure your dealer shows you the setup procedure so that you are aware of them should anything need tweaking later on. There is nothing to setting up a TT, a lot of people say the adjustments scare them but believe me it is very easy to keep your TT running tip top. If you have any questions regartding setup, feel free to ask. You can also check out the link I gave you earlier. There is much to learn if you are interested. Good luck, vinyl can be addicting so be careful! [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     
  20. mike_decock

    mike_decock Supporting Actor

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