Record (vinyl) turntable. I'm needing your advice.

PaulB

Legendary Member
Location
Colne
Hey everyone,

I had some really good advice on here about a dash-cam I was buying last week so am asking the same question about getting back to playing vinyl records again.

Things seem to have changed so much since the olden days (1980/90s). I went into a branch of Richer Sounds yesterday hoping to leave with a suitable system but came out more confused than when I walked in. All this pre-amp stuff was a bit too much for my simple mind so anyone here with some advice would be gratefully accepted.

Firstly, the system recommended by the Richer Sounds guy wasn't in stock so I'd have to buy it on line. Secondly, the cost seemed OK to me...until he announced I'd need speakers to go with it and the ones he suggested were more expensive than the turntable taking the cost of the whole set up to over £1,000!

Looking on Amazon is doing me no good because, like with the dash-cam, there are just too many pages and so much conflicting advice/suggestions. All I want is a record player than will allow me to begin playing 12 inch albums again.

So if anyone has a system they like and sounds great, please let me know and I'll gratefully receive all forumites' recommendations.
 

MontyVeda

a short-tempered ill-controlled small-minded troll
Firstly, what do you currently listen to music on?

Can you plug a turntable into that? (via an Aux input, possibly).

I'm old school so have a separates system; amp, tuner, cd, cassette deck, mini-disc and turntable... which makes things easy.

If you just have just a phone with spotify and a bluetooth speaker, then you'll need to invest in more than just a turntable.

edit... the salesperson in Richer Sounds will try to make you spend more than you need to. Don't listen to them :stop:
 

cisamcgu

Guru
Location
Merseyside-ish
Hey everyone,

I had some really good advice on here about a dash-cam I was buying last week so am asking the same question about getting back to playing vinyl records again.

Things seem to have changed so much since the olden days (1980/90s). I went into a branch of Richer Sounds yesterday hoping to leave with a suitable system but came out more confused than when I walked in. All this pre-amp stuff was a bit too much for my simple mind so anyone here with some advice would be gratefully accepted.

Firstly, the system recommended by the Richer Sounds guy wasn't in stock so I'd have to buy it on line. Secondly, the cost seemed OK to me...until he announced I'd need speakers to go with it and the ones he suggested were more expensive than the turntable taking the cost of the whole set up to over £1,000!

Looking on Amazon is doing me no good because, like with the dash-cam, there are just too many pages and so much conflicting advice/suggestions. All I want is a record player than will allow me to begin playing 12 inch albums again.

So if anyone has a system they like and sounds great, please let me know and I'll gratefully receive all forumites' recommendations.
Turntable : Rega Planar 1 - £300
Amplifier : NAD 316BEE - £300
Speakers : Monitor Audio Bronze 50 - £280

This is approximately what I have. My speakers are a bit older, but the same model, and the TT is a Rega Planar 3 from about 30+ years ago


Andrew
I think it sounds excellent
 

MontyVeda

a short-tempered ill-controlled small-minded troll
I have an old Garrard deck, got to be 40 years old, going through a Naim amp and B &W speakers The wife bought me a Project deck a few years ago, was one of the lower end one's, The Garrard wins hands down.
depending on which Garrard deck you have... it's probably worth five times the price of a new Project :eek:

@PaulB ...you don't need to spend a fortune. Decent speakers can cost under £150 (under £50 if you get a good 2nd hand deal). You needn't spend more than £100 on an amp (much less 2nd hand). Same with the turntable. Mine cost £5 from a charity shop about 25 years ago. Chances are you won't be able to hear the difference from a hi-fi system costing a couple of hundred and one costing a few grand... but i expect lots of cycling-audiophiles will pounce on me to tell me how wrong i am. :laugh:
 
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si_c

Guru
Location
Wirral
You need at least an integrated amp (some, like mine, have an integrated pre-amp for TTs), a Turntable and Speakers, plus relevant cabling.

The reason you need a pre-amp is because the cartridge on the Turntable outputs a very low power signal so this needs boosting to a level that the amp can use, hence the pre-amp. Back in the good old days, most amps will have had a pre-amp built in (of varying quality), which allowed you to plug the TT into the Phono socket on the back.

The good news is you can still get an amp with a pre-amp built in. Cambridge Audio (Richer Sounds own brand IIRC) do the AXA35 which has a pre-amp built in, and the Cambridge Audio amps generally have a good reputation. I'd suggest pairing them with a reasonable quality set of bookshelf speakers, something like the Monitor Audio Bronze 100s and a Project T1 turntable. That should give you some change from £1000 for cables etc.

You can go quite crazy, but to be honest if you're just getting back into HiFi (like bikes it can get expensive fast) then this should give you a balanced system that meets your need of just listening to some music.
 

si_c

Guru
Location
Wirral
Turntable : Rega Planar 1 - £300
Amplifier : NAD 316BEE - £300
Speakers : Monitor Audio Bronze 50 - £280

This is approximately what I have. My speakers are a bit older, but the same model, and the TT is a Rega Planar 3 from about 30+ years ago


Andrew
I think it sounds excellent
This also is a nice setup. I have the Project 1 turntable which I've had for about 15 years and it works great, I also have Monitor Audio S2 speakers (also about 15 years old), so I went that way as I know they sound good. Either would serve you very well.

The alternative might be to get a separate Phono Pre-Amp and a Headphone amp and headphones. This would probably cost a little less, but give better overall sound quality, but limited to headphones.
 

Drago

Flouncing Nobber
Location
Poshshire
Im still listening to the system I assembled over time in the mid to late 80's. Hit ebay and sort yourself something similar for a few hundred sheets.
 
depending on which Garrard deck you have... it's probably worth five times the price of a new Project :eek:

@PaulB ...you don't need to spend a fortune. Decent speakers can cost under £150 (under £50 if you get a good 2nd hand deal). You needn't spend more than £100 on an amp (much less 2nd hand). Same with the turntable. Mine cost £5 from a charity shop about 25 years ago. Chances are you won't be able to hear the difference from a hi-fi system costing a couple of hundred and one costing a few grand... but i expect lots of cycling-audiophiles will pounce on me to tell me how wrong i am. :laugh:

I seem to remember the SP25 was a quite poor and cheap unit, but the 401 and 301 with the distinctive stroboscope lines on the platter rim were very highly regarded, especially various aftermarket upgrades being done by enthusiasts. My uncle had one I think and he was very much into hi fi back in the day.

Did a quick look on ebay and a 401 being sold "for parts" had reached nearly a grand. That's
a bit nuts as you could probably get a working Linn for that.
 

slowmotion

Quite dreadful
Location
lost somewhere
yeah but... who wants to spend a grand on a turntable, let alone two grand?

I'd much rather spend a grand on vinyl... two grand, even... in fact, I already have... probably several times! :okay:
Plenty of people will drop a couple of grand on a turntable. My Rega dates to about 1990 and cost about £120. It's had a couple of new bootleg belts and some drops of oil in the main bearing. It still rotates.
 

yello

Legendary Member
Location
France
Around here, we have shops called 'trocs'. They're basically outlets for 2nd hand stuff, often house clearance. They usually have HiFi seperates, some of it very affordable, of all makes. Mostly amps, tuners, tape and cd players. Not often turntables though, dunno why but I could hazard a guess. If you know your stuff, you can kit yourself out with a decent system for sod all.

Anything like that in the UK?
 
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