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Good $500 entry-level high-end turntable?

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Anonymous
April 9, 2005 7:22:34 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

I'm looking for a nice entry-level high-end turntable for around
$300-$500 to get as a high-school graduation present. $500 is pretty
much the highest I can go, so a P3 or any other "if you can stretch you
buget to..."'s are probably not options. The thing I'm currently
using--an old GE machine with a built-in tape player and
volume/balance/tone controls, balanced on the 8"-wide top of my
television--isn't worth anything, and needless to say I still haven't
experienced that "hey-this-really-DOES-sound-better-than-CD" moment
I've been waiting for for so long, so anything at all is better than
what I have now. I've been doing my homework and am looking at a Rega
P2 but have some questions:

1. How's the overall price/performance ratio of something like a
Pro-Ject 1.2 compared to a Rega P2? Is the P2 worth the extra $200,
and if so, please explain in detail why. I could use the $200 towards
a receiver, and being a young and inexperienced newbie, I'm wondering
if I'll notice much of a difference.

2. I've got a 7" fetish, so I'll be playing at 45 RPM a lot. Will I
have to worry about stretching or snapping the belt on a P2, or are
there any external speed controllers like the Sumiko Speed Box?

3. Is a P2 even the best option? I hear it's tonearm is outstanding
for its price range, etc, but what are some other options in that price
range, and what are the pros and cons of each? On a side note, looking
at cheaper turntbales, I hear that the MMF's are slightly inferior to
their Sumiko Pro-Ject counterparts. How big of a factor is this? I'm
only 17 and am not going to notice subtle differences. Also, how's the
Pro-Ject Debut III or Xpression 1?

4. Can anyone recommend some good turntable dealers in the Philadelphia
area?

Thanks for any help; I'm really looking forward to taking a nice
turntable with me to college!

Steve
Anonymous
April 12, 2005 4:19:00 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

drowned_in_milk wrote:
> I'm looking for a nice entry-level high-end turntable for around
> $300-$500 to get as a high-school graduation present. $500 is pretty
> much the highest I can go, so a P3 or any other "if you can stretch
you
> buget to..."'s are probably not options. The thing I'm currently
> using--an old GE machine with a built-in tape player and
> volume/balance/tone controls, balanced on the 8"-wide top of my
> television--isn't worth anything, and needless to say I still haven't
> experienced that "hey-this-really-DOES-sound-better-than-CD" moment
> I've been waiting for for so long,

Don't hold your breath. ;-)

> so anything at all is better than
> what I have now. I've been doing my homework and am looking at a
Rega
> P2 but have some questions:
>
> 1. How's the overall price/performance ratio of something like a
> Pro-Ject 1.2 compared to a Rega P2? Is the P2 worth the extra $200,
> and if so, please explain in detail why. I could use the $200
towards
> a receiver, and being a young and inexperienced newbie, I'm
wondering
> if I'll notice much of a difference.

I'm familiar only with the Rega. My guess is that if you put them
side-to-side, properly fitted with the same cartridge, you'd notice a
difference but it wouldn't be huge. But here's the thing: In your dorm
room, they won't be side-to-side, and I suspect either will make you
happy.
>
> 2. I've got a 7" fetish, so I'll be playing at 45 RPM a lot. Will I
> have to worry about stretching or snapping the belt on a P2, or are
> there any external speed controllers like the Sumiko Speed Box?

I think with the Rega, you've actually got to take the platter off and
readjust the belt every time you switch from LP to 45 and back again.
That might be true of a number of other brands as well. If so, that is
a really good reason to buy something else, like a Thorens. You might
sacrifice a little in sound, but you will more than make up for it in
convenience.
>
> 3. Is a P2 even the best option? I hear it's tonearm is outstanding
> for its price range, etc, but what are some other options in that
price
> range, and what are the pros and cons of each? On a side note,
looking
> at cheaper turntbales, I hear that the MMF's are slightly inferior to
> their Sumiko Pro-Ject counterparts.

If you search the Web enough, I'm sure you can also hear the opposite.
And to the extent that there's consensus on these things, it's often
just people repeating what others have said. (And I think some of these
competing brands are actually selling the same tables with different
nameplates, which makes comparisons even more suspect.)

> How big of a factor is this? I'm
> only 17 and am not going to notice subtle differences.

Age has nothing to do with it. You've got better hearing than I do, for
sure.

> Also, how's the
> Pro-Ject Debut III or Xpression 1?
>
> 4. Can anyone recommend some good turntable dealers in the
Philadelphia
> area?
>
> Thanks for any help; I'm really looking forward to taking a nice
> turntable with me to college!

Good luck!

bob
Anonymous
April 14, 2005 4:00:42 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

the P2 and all of its clones definitely require removal of the platter when
you change speeds. That could get old real quick.

You might consider, as someone else mentioned, one of the lower-level
Thorens, perhaps the 158 170 or 190?

they're all here http://www.needledoctor.com/s.nl/sc.2/category.355/.f
and can be had cheaper elsewhere. The Ortofon cart is OK. Not sure about
the "Dual" cart in the 158.

There also is the huge used market, of course. But be prepared to tinker.





"drowned_in_milk" <drowned_in_milk@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:D 37hpq015nn@news1.newsguy.com...
> I'm looking for a nice entry-level high-end turntable for around
> $300-$500 to get as a high-school graduation present. $500 is pretty
> much the highest I can go, so a P3 or any other "if you can stretch you
> buget to..."'s are probably not options. The thing I'm currently
> using--an old GE machine with a built-in tape player and
> volume/balance/tone controls, balanced on the 8"-wide top of my
> television--isn't worth anything, and needless to say I still haven't
> experienced that "hey-this-really-DOES-sound-better-than-CD" moment
> I've been waiting for for so long, so anything at all is better than> what
> I have now. I've been doing my homework and am looking at a Rega
> P2 but have some questions:
>
> 1. How's the overall price/performance ratio of something like a
> Pro-Ject 1.2 compared to a Rega P2? Is the P2 worth the extra $200,
> and if so, please explain in detail why. I could use the $200 towards
> a receiver, and being a young and inexperienced newbie, I'm wondering
> if I'll notice much of a difference.
>
> 2. I've got a 7" fetish, so I'll be playing at 45 RPM a lot. Will I
> have to worry about stretching or snapping the belt on a P2, or are
> there any external speed controllers like the Sumiko Speed Box?
>
> 3. Is a P2 even the best option? I hear it's tonearm is outstanding
> for its price range, etc, but what are some other options in that price
> range, and what are the pros and cons of each? On a side note, looking
> at cheaper turntbales, I hear that the MMF's are slightly inferior to
> their Sumiko Pro-Ject counterparts. How big of a factor is this? I'm
> only 17 and am not going to notice subtle differences. Also, how's the
> Pro-Ject Debut III or Xpression 1?
>
> 4. Can anyone recommend some good turntable dealers in the Philadelphia
> area?
>
> Thanks for any help; I'm really looking forward to taking a nice
> turntable with me to college!
>
> Steve
Related resources
Anonymous
April 14, 2005 4:01:25 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

drowned_in_milk <drowned_in_milk@yahoo.com> wrote:
> I'm looking for a nice entry-level high-end turntable for around
> $300-$500 to get as a high-school graduation present.

In the rec.audio.opinion group there has been recently a similar thread.
One recommendation that convinced me (if I ever buy another turntable) was
to buy a Technics SL-1200Mk2 (or the black version, the Technics SL-1210Mk2).

Strong points (quoted from that thread):

- "it's a great product that will just keep on going and going. And getting
parts, if needed, shouldn't be a problem for many, many years to come. "

- "it is admittedly built like a tank, and damn near bullet proof..."

- "It is also very quiet (low "rumble"), has great speed accuracy (low
wow and flutter), is pretty well isolated in most cases and has a pretty
low mass tonearm with very low bearing friction."

There is one review at:
http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/frr.pl?ranlg&10930105...

Thread:
http://groups.google.pt/groups?lr=&threadm=1112829250.5...

Manufacturer's page:
http://www.panasonic.co.uk/technics-dj/sl1210mk2y/index...



Then you need a cartridge. Technics makes one:

http://www.panasonic.co.uk/technics-dj/epcu1200/index.h...

I think the usual recommendation is the Shure V15VxMR, but it is
discontinued and expensive:

http://www.shure.com/phono/v15vxmr.html

The current highest model that Shure makes is:
http://www.shure.com/phono/m97xe.asp

And there is a cheaper one:
http://www.shure.com/phono/m92e.asp

> $500 is pretty much the highest I can go,

Looking at prices in http://froogle.google.com/ :

Technics SL1200MK2 $419.95
Technics EPC-U1200 $ 59.95

Shure M92E $ 19.94
Shure M97XE $ 63.40

Shure V15VXMR $206.69

It seems that, except for the V15VXMR, it will fit your budget,
at least if you buy on-line.

> and needless to say I still haven't
> experienced that "hey-this-really-DOES-sound-better-than-CD" moment
> I've been waiting for for so long,

I think you will continue to wait.

> 2. I've got a 7" fetish, so I'll be playing at 45 RPM a lot. Will I
> have to worry about stretching or snapping the belt on a P2, or are
> there any external speed controllers like the Sumiko Speed Box?

On the Technics, just press a button.

> 4. Can anyone recommend some good turntable dealers in the Philadelphia
> area?

Hmm, a google search for Philadelphia+SL1200MK2 didn't find anything
useful.

> Thanks for any help; I'm really looking forward to taking a nice
> turntable with me to college!

In that case, you probably want a robust turntable. Buy the Technics.

--
http://www.mat.uc.pt/~rps/

..pt is Portugal| `Whom the gods love die young'-Menander (342-292 BC)
Europe | Villeneuve 50-82, Toivonen 56-86, Senna 60-94
April 15, 2005 4:20:08 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

Rui Pedro Mendes Salgueiro wrote:
> drowned_in_milk <drowned_in_milk@yahoo.com> wrote:
>> I'm looking for a nice entry-level high-end turntable for around
>> $300-$500 to get as a high-school graduation present.
>
> In the rec.audio.opinion group there has been recently a similar thread.
> One recommendation that convinced me (if I ever buy another turntable) was
> to buy a Technics SL-1200Mk2 (or the black version, the Technics SL-1210Mk2).
>
> Strong points (quoted from that thread):
>
> - "it's a great product that will just keep on going and going. And getting
> parts, if needed, shouldn't be a problem for many, many years to come. "
>
> - "it is admittedly built like a tank, and damn near bullet proof..."
>
> - "It is also very quiet (low "rumble"), has great speed accuracy (low
> wow and flutter), is pretty well isolated in most cases and has a pretty
> low mass tonearm with very low bearing friction."
>
> There is one review at:
> http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/frr.pl?ranlg&10930105...
>
> Thread:
> http://groups.google.pt/groups?lr=&threadm=1112829250.5...
>
> Manufacturer's page:
> http://www.panasonic.co.uk/technics-dj/sl1210mk2y/index...
>
>
>
> Then you need a cartridge. Technics makes one:
>
> http://www.panasonic.co.uk/technics-dj/epcu1200/index.h...
>
> I think the usual recommendation is the Shure V15VxMR, but it is
> discontinued and expensive:
>
> http://www.shure.com/phono/v15vxmr.html
>
> The current highest model that Shure makes is:
> http://www.shure.com/phono/m97xe.asp
>
> And there is a cheaper one:
> http://www.shure.com/phono/m92e.asp
>
>> $500 is pretty much the highest I can go,
>
> Looking at prices in http://froogle.google.com/ :
>
> Technics SL1200MK2 $419.95
> Technics EPC-U1200 $ 59.95
>
> Shure M92E $ 19.94
> Shure M97XE $ 63.40
>
> Shure V15VXMR $206.69
>
> It seems that, except for the V15VXMR, it will fit your budget,
> at least if you buy on-line.
>
>> and needless to say I still haven't
>> experienced that "hey-this-really-DOES-sound-better-than-CD" moment
>> I've been waiting for for so long,
>
> I think you will continue to wait.
>
>> 2. I've got a 7" fetish, so I'll be playing at 45 RPM a lot. Will I
>> have to worry about stretching or snapping the belt on a P2, or are
>> there any external speed controllers like the Sumiko Speed Box?
>
> On the Technics, just press a button.
>
>> 4. Can anyone recommend some good turntable dealers in the Philadelphia
>> area?
>
> Hmm, a google search for Philadelphia+SL1200MK2 didn't find anything
> useful.
>
>> Thanks for any help; I'm really looking forward to taking a nice
>> turntable with me to college!
>
> In that case, you probably want a robust turntable. Buy the Technics.
>

Of course, there's that legendary reputation of that turntable among
DJ's, professional and amatuer.

My son owns two of these, so I have played with these, and they are
really robust. Parts are readily available, and perhaps even more
important to a college student, it is easy to sell these turntables. I
would look at the local craigslist.org.
Anonymous
April 15, 2005 4:22:25 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

You can get the Music Hall MMF-2.1 Belt Drive Turntable from
audioadvisor.com for $314. That's with an arm and a Music Hall moving
magnet phono cartridge. It's probably OK. For $314, it's excellant.
Personally, I wouldn't go off to college with a turntable, however.
It's a rough and tumble environment with drunks wandering in and out of
your room. I wouldn't take anything to college I wouldn't mind having
a drunk, muddy rugby player picking up and investigating. These things
happen in college. Reformat your 45s into MP3 and invest in a nice MP3
player and a nice computer. Put your records into storage until
you've settled down, I sure wish I had.
Anonymous
April 15, 2005 4:24:23 AM

Archived from groups: rec.audio.high-end (More info?)

The Rega P2 has undoubtedly the best build quality in both the table
and in the arm of any table in its price range. The arm is so good
that it is in fact used on other manufacturer's tables that sell for
three times the Regas price. You don't buy a turntable for
convenience, but for sound quality and for the ability to play Lp's,
so I would ignore the comments about the speed changing. I doubt you
will have more than two or three 45 rpm discs in your entire
collection - ever.
-Bill
www.uptownaudio.com
Roanoke VA
(540) 343-1250

"drowned_in_milk" <drowned_in_milk@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:D 37hpq015nn@news1.newsguy.com...
> I'm looking for a nice entry-level high-end turntable for around
> $300-$500 to get as a high-school graduation present. $500 is
> pretty
> much the highest I can go, so a P3 or any other "if you can stretch
> you
> buget to..."'s are probably not options. The thing I'm currently
> using--an old GE machine with a built-in tape player and
> volume/balance/tone controls, balanced on the 8"-wide top of my
> television--isn't worth anything, and needless to say I still
> haven't
> experienced that "hey-this-really-DOES-sound-better-than-CD" moment
> I've been waiting for for so long, so anything at all is better than
> what I have now. I've been doing my homework and am looking at a
> Rega
> P2 but have some questions:
>
> 1. How's the overall price/performance ratio of something like a
> Pro-Ject 1.2 compared to a Rega P2? Is the P2 worth the extra $200,
> and if so, please explain in detail why. I could use the $200
> towards
> a receiver, and being a young and inexperienced newbie, I'm
> wondering
> if I'll notice much of a difference.
>
> 2. I've got a 7" fetish, so I'll be playing at 45 RPM a lot. Will I
> have to worry about stretching or snapping the belt on a P2, or are
> there any external speed controllers like the Sumiko Speed Box?
>
> 3. Is a P2 even the best option? I hear it's tonearm is outstanding
> for its price range, etc, but what are some other options in that
> price
> range, and what are the pros and cons of each? On a side note,
> looking
> at cheaper turntbales, I hear that the MMF's are slightly inferior
> to
> their Sumiko Pro-Ject counterparts. How big of a factor is this?
> I'm
> only 17 and am not going to notice subtle differences. Also, how's
> the
> Pro-Ject Debut III or Xpression 1?
>
> 4. Can anyone recommend some good turntable dealers in the
> Philadelphia
> area?
>
> Thanks for any help; I'm really looking forward to taking a nice
> turntable with me to college!
>
> Steve
!