/ Need a turntable (record player )
I know this question has been done several times possibly even by me; consensus often comes out with two brands so my query is:
Budgeting around £150.
Second hand Rega Planar or new Project one (don’t know the model names)
Pros and cons of each?
I've had a Planar 3 for seven years and love it to bits. Only problem for me (more of an irritation) is changing between 33 and 45. You have to manually adjust the belt position. The Planar 1, which is nearer your price point, uses the same speed change system and for the money is pretty much as good as it gets. I cannot vouch for the Project but from reviews there isn't a rizla between them.
Thanks Jim! It could be time to just flip a coin to choose!
Not exactly what you’re asking but here’s something worth considering.
The quality of the stylus (and if second hand, the age of) is something you can replace/upgrade etc. A turn table is essentially a motor and belt with a turntable so within reason any (old) thing may do but add a good quality stylus (and you can do serious money on this) and that’s where you’ll notice the difference!
just my opinion btw but based on using a Thorens turntable (cheap) with an upgraded Audio Technica stylus (not cheap!)
edit: which is achievable on that budget ie £50 turntable, £100 stylus
How big a model helicopter are you going to be using it with?
I've never owned Rega or Project turntables, and don't know which Project one you mean. That said, I do know something about Rega turntables. They're very well regarded and have plus points and drawbacks. Both Rega 2 and 3 turntables punch above their weight, with the Rega 3 being the best. It comes with a very good arm and when properly supported and with a suitable cartridge (Goldring moving magnet cartridges are a good match and allow you just to replace the stylus when you need to rather than the whole thing) can produce excellent results. The drawbacks are having to move the belt to change speeds, as already noted, but also since the turntable has no suspension, it needs to be properly supported to prevent things like the vibrations caused by footfall from reaching the turntable and interfering with the sound.
Or, for the price you want to spend, you could buy a turntable with a USB output and rip all your records to FLAC files and then sell the turntable and all your vinyl. I've thought of that myself but haven't done it; not yet, at least.
My Dad has a Rega turntable, and he had it complemented by a fellow from a company who brought out their own, having based it on whatever model he has. Now I think of it, a bro has a Project One and that's decent too.
dual 505 more bang for bucks back in the day. why not direct drive with pitch control and release your inner DJ?
All good points.
By a cheap turntable I’m not talking a plastic midi unit of course but for £50ish ‘one’ can up pick something half decent second hand these days and a £50+ stylus would give good reproduction.
I've got the Project Elemental which is bang on your budget. Nice but a bit faffy with the hardcore changing the rubber band thing to alter speed. Replaced a 30 year old second hand Pioneer deck and maybe slightly less 'warm' and a bit more 'crisp'. Not a geek though.
I'd echo others here and recommend you think carefully and spend as much as you stretch to on your cartridge, pre amp (if required?) and cabling, as these have a huge affect on sound quality, probably more so than the differences between the turntables recommended here which are all of great quality.
I currently own 6 turntables (yeah I know, hoarder!), and out of that lot I'd recommend the Akai AP001 (found on the street, looks and sounds great) and the Technics 1210 (solid and will last a lifetime, but probably a bit beyond what you're looking for)
How about this?
I think naming it after the 1970s-1980s continental version of the Vauxhall Cavalier was a mistake !
Thanks all for interesting and unpredictable replies. The idea that the turntable is basic and it's the cartridge and stylus that matters, is not something I'd thought about (analogous to a camera being a black box and the lens being the important thing, at least on film). I'll have to think about the belt changes, I don't think I'll be playing that many 45rpm and given that the appeal of a turntable is that you create more faff and ritual, maybe this will be a boon? (doubt it somehow!
But maybe something I could tolerate at least) I have had occasional loans of an SL1210 and it seems somewhat overkill, I'd be paying for robustness and pitch shift and the lighting system and I prefer to keep it simple. My amp has its own phono stage, I've been using it 22 years with a finally-discarded crap turntable wired in directly.
Rega second hand prices have increased since I last looked 3 years ago...sigh
If you live near london, theres a planar 3 for £230 on ebay. You know you want to, and you wont regret it.....
I am travelling through London at the weekend...
and I’ll have my car...
Actually that is looking a sensible option! You mean the one in Hounslow? Funnily enough there is also a Planar 3 in Hinckley (not only quite near me but also somewhere I am travelling to tomorrow) at £225, needs a new belt and guy has drilled three holes for a previous tonearm he'd presumably fitted - sounds OK, he's upfront about that.
Hounslow one has a Linn K5 cartridge and RB300 tonearm. I know nothing about these
Hinckley one has an R200 "original tonearm", Again no idea on pros and cons.
Presumably I can get a belt for a fiver (or anywhere upwards of a fiver of course!)
What do you reckon, team? I feel like striking while the iron is hot and getting either one of these...
Hounslow one presumably better?
My separates are on a good solid heavy dedicated hi-fi stand, suspension should not be a big issue regarding footfall as I intend to sit and listen. No dancing! Occasionally my whole house vibrates when a big (or too fast) vehicle crosses the humpback bridge nearby, but I'll put up with that I think!
Yeah the hounslow one. Mine has RB300 arm (original eqpt in late 80's). Dont fancy anything tarted with, and you'd have to spend significant sums to get better than the rb300. Dunno about the lin cartridge, but they are well respected brand so cant see a problem. (mines an AT). Belts are easily available from ebay for a few quid.
Jusst read hinckley one, should be fine also. RB200 is supposedly downrange one step from RB300, but i suspect neither you nor I would be able to tell the difference!
It is funny that I am skirting Hinckley by a couple of miles tmrw, and on a Saturday I’ll be heading into London from Bristol, and both these have come up on eBay right now. Yes it is beyond stated budget but given that anything would cost >£20 to ship and that most turntable sellers prefer collection and this way I am hardly going out of my way, then £230 is justifiable! Hell, I spent £120 in 1998 on a piece of cheap junk worth about £40 and put it up with it far too long...
Left field comment, but what about a GL75? Many need new arm pivots but they are cheap to replace (or they were a few years ago). It has an idler wheel drive but pretty much eliminates wow/flutter and rumble by a very heavy platter - will even play 78s if I remember rightly
Sounds good, thanks for suggestion but the prices are all over the place and I am not familiar enough with them tonhave any idea of what’s going to be a good one and what’s going to become a bit of a fiddly project! I am pretty familiar with the Rega brand at least just with a name so I think I’ll stick with that this time
The planar 3 / rb300 is a classic set up and one you won't go wrong with . £230 seems very reasonable , I just had a quick look and it seems the arms alone go for that occasionally and are £350 ish new . Also I agree with not buying one that's been dickered around with . Buy the Hounslow one.
Have contacted the seller to see if collection this weekend is possible
Exciting times, and I just got new double vinyl this week too (Anna Meredith's "Anno")
> It is funny that I am skirting Hinckley by a couple of miles tmrw, and on a Saturday I’ll be heading into London from Bristol, and both these have come up on eBay right now. Yes it is beyond stated budget but given that anything would cost >£20 to ship and that most turntable sellers prefer collection and this way I am hardly going out of my way, then £230 is justifiable! Hell, I spent £120 in 1998 on a piece of cheap junk worth about £40 and put it up with it far too long...
What a superb way of justifying the extra £75 !
I am pretty superb at that sort of thing.
And it's NOT throwing good money after bad. No. Not that
> Have contacted the seller to see if collection this weekend is possible
Pfffft no reply yet!
He doesn't want to sell it, and will not be fessing up to her indoors that he's had an offer.......
And rightly so.
Possibly! I don't want to do a "buy it now" in case he turns out not to be around for collection this weekend and I end up obliged to make a big trip to Hounslow at a later date....
> He doesn't want to sell it
i am beginning to think you’re right or am I just impatient ? It’s only been 29 hours since enquiring
Both, but you are allowed to be because this is a turntable. For vinyl. He has probavbly gone into hiding.
And before you ask, mine is not and will never be for sale.
Just sent him a carefully composed “snippy yet diplomatic” message outlining that I will buy it if he confirms that Incan collect this wknd and can show me it at least mechanically spinning at the right speed for 30 seconds
Regarding my £80 increase, I just got a £134 tax rebate ha ha
So that means £54 approx of vinyl arriving Chez Straggler, no?
Ha, well the new vinyl I received this week already cost £31 !
And the seller got back to me - the first message had not got through first time. I'll collect it tomorrow, yay
Bought it but can’t test until later today when I get home. Well we plugged it in and saw it spin, and put the needle on a record, no amp or speakers but you could hear it in the cartridge and it gonskatong across the vinyl so i am happy that it’s good enough. It was the seller’s uncle’s, uncle just asked him to do all the eBay . Looks well looked after, hasn’t even been used for about 8 years, they think it is about 15 years old. I am excited about testing it, yay. Thanks Ian for pointing me toward it, and thanks everyone else for input on the thread.
No sweat, the only thing that can really go wrong is the belt may be gone (not exactly difficult to correct), or the wiring is gone, but hugely unlikely. Turntables dont really get much abusive treatment, so if it worked for the seller, it should be fine. You've just got to buy more vinyl now
Home, plugged in and testing now
So far so good mostly. Have had to fiddle with the tonearm balance as the needle skated back to the start after three songs on one record. Seems ok now apart from one of my test records where I either get bad skating or bad sound, as if the tonearm can only be either too light (skating) or too heavy (distorted sound).
This LP sounded OK on the Technics I had on loan and on my old crap one. I thought maybe it is because it is thick vinyl and I might have to get a thinner slipmat, but I am now playing another new thick vinyl LP and it's fine.
I guess I need to read up a bit more about tonearm balance! Overall it's good. Belt looks in good nick (not crumbling) but not very tight, but seems to be OK. Could a slack belt, rather than a delicately (im)balanced tonearm, cause the problems with that one record?
EDIT - seems to have sorted itself out! God knows what that was all about, but it's all good now, yay!
> You've just got to buy more vinyl now
Have you checked the cartridge alignment? I thought this was bollocks before I had a problem, and got one of those alignment gauges. I thought it was snake oil, but with a bit of careful tweaking, it was fine. Only seemed to affect one of the cartridges I have had (out of 4). But if it works now, stop fiddling!
And i might have to seek out some of your vinyl choices - i dont recognise many of them.
> your vinyl choices - i dont recognise many of them.
Have you meddled with the anti skate control? I think rule of thumb is that it should equate to tracking weight.
> Have you meddled with the anti skate control? I think rule of thumb is that it should equate to tracking weight.
Not yet, just shifted the main counterweight. It seems OK to me now, and I am wary of spoiling things with further meddling! Maybe it is 99% good now and by striving to get 100% I'll irretrievably knock it down to 70%! Thanks though
> In fairness, and not being "funny" here, this might mean that you have quite different tastes to me!
My kids think i'm weird because of the stuff I listen to "at my age" and the volume I listen to it at. Alessi's ark are ok, actually and i'm not averse to that type of thing. However to put it into context with your signed LP's, one of my most prized is a picture disc of the Damned Live in Newcastle, and i'm in the picture!!
There's a pdf of the instructions for setting up the tonearm here, if that helps.
Thanks! I would have looked that up, you have saved me the bother. Last night I was tired and just doing what I could do quickly to make things listenable! Much appreciated
Ha! I do listen to a bit of louder stuff, it's not all just fey folky womenfolk. But I don't have much signed by LOUD GUITAR PEOPLE. A Two Gallants CD, and my guitar is signed by the guitarist from Electrelane who do actually rock hard when they need to (70% of the time), but yeah not quite The Damned Live in Newcastle I must admit...
You've done this whole thread wrong. I mean look at it - asking for advice, thanking those who responded and engaging with the thread generally, then letting folk know what you did and how it went.
Ridiculous. This is UCK. As any fule kno, what you're *supposed* to do is post your question then ignore all the responses and add nothing further except occasionally to kvetch that you're not getting the answers you wanted.
> You've done this whole thread wrong.
Fantastic closing paragraph (my emphases)
"Further adjustments for the neurotic/paranoid enthusiast
There are many hypothesis and theories regarding the accurate setting of bias compensation, cartridge alignment and V.T.A.
All these theories exist because these adjustments are only approximations or compromises. There is no one hundred percent correct answer.
If the previous instructions are followed carefully then the arm and cartridge are likely to perform at or near to the optimum.
Nevertheless other methods do exist (i.e. the use of test records for setting bias compensation and complex multiple point alignment systems for cartridge setting). If properly understood and implemented these systems cause no harm and may be used.
However care must be taken when using test records as these are generally designed for professional use. They are only relevant as a comparison between different products and can lead to hi-fi paranoia if used in isolation.
Likewise more complex cartridge setting systems may be valid but are difficult to under- stand and if not used correctly may cause more harm than good.
So experiment if you wish but you are likely to gain more pleasure from listening to music."
> You've done this whole thread wrong. I mean look at it - asking for advice, thanking those who responded and engaging with the thread generally, then letting folk know what you did and how it went
I am NOT The Lemming! I am a HUMAN BEING
Turntable serving me better than expected .
I’ve learned that I subconsciously didn’t use my crappy old one as much as I thought I did, probably due to it being a bit crappy. This has had the result of making me dig deeper through my vinyl and finding stuff I forgot I had due to it being too “nice” to put through the old turntable. Totally forgot I had a signed-on-the-runout copy of Azure Ray’s “Hold on Love”. Was beautiful putting it on and listening