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Suggest a turntable to rip vinyls: HQ, 100–225 Euros, pre-amp/line out, [was “Turntables suggestion ?”/“(to rip some vynils)”, moved from A/H]
post Jun 5 2012, 17:11
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I would like to hear you suggestions regarding the choice of a turntable.

- Approx. budget 100~225 EUR
- Just to rip some vynils but I want to be sure to have good quality (I like natural sound, so no need for bass improvements or stuff like that).
- I'd like one with a pre-amp/line out (I have an Asus Xonar Essence STX soundcard and I trust line out more than USB, any reason this would be wrong ?)
-- I'd like to rip to .wav, I don't want any system that would force MP3 encoding (but If I can use direct line out instead, then I don't care about this).
- 45 rpm, 33 rpm
- Ideally it should be easily available for order in order.

Some models I have in mind after a quick search : Lenco - L-81 USB, Ion - Proflash, Ion - Profile LP, Pro-Ject - Debut III

Thank you for your help.

This post has been edited by Xrcr9709: Jun 5 2012, 17:21
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post Jul 14 2012, 00:11
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From: Bavaria
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No idea whether this thread is still current, but for the sake of posterity:
I'd probably prefer even an '80s "plastic fantastic" P-mount (quartz) direct-drive Technics 'table (<50€ and quite plentiful) with a cheap but decent external pre (e.g. TC-750, <30€ new) to most anything new in the price range specified. (And we haven't even gotten to decent middle-class players of yore, which would also be within the budget.) Even if the original stylus should be wrecked, a few decent P-mount (T4P) cartridges are still around (avoid Grados though - hum problems), and they are super easy to set up since most parameters are standardized. The cartridge has a fairly big influence on sound quality, so some attention to this topic pays off.

Vinyl snobs are likely to scoff at the so-so vibration isolation of the rather basic models I have in mind (e.g. SL-DD/QD series), but for vinyl ripping this is not nearly as important as in direct playback. A stable, vibration-free surface is nonetheless recommended. If needed, a sufficiently large concrete / stone platter with halved tennis / squash balls as feet provides some extra isolation without breaking the bank. The comparatively light weight of the players also has its advantages - they are not as easily damaged in transit. (I don't even want to know how many turntables have been wrecked as a result of improper packaging.)

When recording, speed accuracy should be paid attention to. It is usually a non-issue for quartz DD 'tables unless defective (which is why I'd prefer those); others should be equipped with a strobe indicator. Rumble is another factor. I'm not entirely happy with my little belt driven SL-BD20 in that regard - it's just fine for the casual listener, but for greater demands you really want a more massive platter in a belt drive. Once you get to something like a QD33, things have gotten a fair bit quieter - not up with models higher up the food chain maybe, but definitely OK. Then there's wow&flutter, which benefits from direct drive, a heavy platter and a good platter bearing. Then there's tonearm effective moving mass, rigidity and bearing quality. (Again, the tonearm bearings in those inexpensive Technics units aren't bad at all, and they generally do well on wow&flutter.) And finally there is cartridge / phonopre interaction and RIAA deviation.

If quality is a factor, vinyl playback quickly becomes a fairly complex business. Time literally is money here, as with some accumulated knowledge, assembling a good setup on a budget becomes much easier.
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