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  1. #1
    Super Wammer
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    Turntable help required

    Yesterday I fired up the Rega Planar 3 with Roksan Corus Blue for the first time since I had it fixed around 6 years ago. Finally thought I'd have a listen to my old vinyl that's been in the cupboard for 20-40 years.
    Now then... I could get into this! Shit me I'd forgotten how dynamic vinyl can be. However, I must say it's definitely a bit bright, thin in the mid and can get congested (the sound I mean).
    Wot to do to bring the vinyl up to a decent standard? Will a new cartridge suffice in this RB300 arm? Or do I need to start from scratch? Using a Creek phono stage. Frankly, I don't know where to start..haven't kept up with vinyl for so long... in other words.. HELP!

  2. #2
    Pac67
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    The Chorus blue is a decent enough cart. What you describe in the mids and the brightness was what eventually convinced me to part with my P25. I've always found Rega arms too thin. You could change the cart to get a more precise and less bright presentation, but if you're serious about a vinyl resurgence, a change of deck/arm might be the best long term solution. There's no substitute for auditioning as taking another's advice on what arm/deck/cart combo is not going to guarantee you the sound in your system and in your listening space you might be after. Only auditioning can do that. What phono stage are you listening through as this might be another route to get some improvements without sacrificing your current TT set up?

  3. #3
    Super Wammer
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    It's a Creek phono stage, taks both mm and mc inputs.OBH15

  4. #4
    Super Dooper Wammer Cable Monkey's Avatar
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    The congested mids are a consequence of the resonances of a standard Rega arm. It is the reason for the foam filling and holes drilled in modified Rega arms. Sibilance can also be a consequence of overtightening the mounting nut of the RB250. It shouldn't be as big a problem on the steel shafted RB's. You have two choices. Start again or address the weaknesses of the Planar 3. That all depends on how far you want to take it, but be aware that a lot of improvements calm that dynamic character down so you may lose some of what impresses you in favour of what others might consider greater fidelity.
    Let me get this straight. You take a perfectly good CD and put it in a DVD player??!!

  5. #5
    Super Wammer tkimages's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Pac67 View Post
    There's no substitute for auditioning as taking another's advice on what arm/deck/cart combo is not going to guarantee you the sound in your system and in your listening space you might be after. Only auditioning can do that.
    Mighty fine advice.
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  6. #6
    Super Wammer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cable Monkey View Post
    The congested mids are a consequence of the resonances of a standard Rega arm. It is the reason for the foam filling and holes drilled in modified Rega arms. Sibilance can also be a consequence of overtightening the mounting nut of the RB250. It shouldn't be as big a problem on the steel shafted RB's. You have two choices. Start again or address the weaknesses of the Planar 3. That all depends on how far you want to take it, but be aware that a lot of improvements calm that dynamic character down so you may lose some of what impresses you in favour of what others might consider greater fidelity.
    Yes indeed, I don't want to loose any of the wallop I have at the moment - I can use cd for a smoother less impactful sound.

  7. #7
    Wammer topoxforddoc's Avatar
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    Robin,

    Do you have a particular budget in mind? If it's just about a simple upgrade to play the very odd record, then I would change the cartridge. However, given the rest of your system, that might not satisfy you. Lots of options really if you decide to go better

    1) Vintage Idler drive - Thorens TD124, EMT 930 or Garrard 301/401
    2) Vintage Direct Drive _ Technics SP10, Micro Seiki, Trio L-07D or EMT 950
    3) Suspended Belt drive - LP12, AVID, SME
    4) Massy non-suspended Belt Drive - Nottingham, TW Acustic, Verdier, VPI, Scheu, Tom Fletcher

    Which you choose depends partly on the siting of your TT - bouncy wooden floor, concrete floor, wall shelf.

    Arm/cartridge combinations are too numerous to list. Some of your decision making may boil down to whether you like to and are happy to tweak/set-up turntables or whether you want a fit and forget option. SWMBO may also take a view!

    Best wishes,

  8. #8
    Wammer topoxforddoc's Avatar
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    Oh, I forgot
    5) Rim drive - VPI or Trans-Fi Salvation

  9. #9
    Super Wammer The Strat's Avatar
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    I've had hours of brilliant entertainment from Rega TTs. I think a cartridge change (Dyna 10x5) and/or phono stage change (Trichord Dino) would help no end. Finally Robin how many hours has it been running since you fired it up? I should imagine everything might just need to loosen up although Rega's are pretty "plug and play" and maintenance free.
    Last edited by The Strat; 11-09-2011 at 05:27 PM.
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  10. #10
    Super Wammer
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    Thanks Charlie. No shortage of options then.
    Lindsay I may well borrow another phono stage as that's an easy option to try. If necessary I can then try another cartridge. If worst came to worst both could be incorporated into a new T/T. Easy does it seems most sensible. Mind you, I reckon this vinyl will become addictive although doubt if I'll buy new stuff. Not a £20 or so a pop.

  11. #11
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    Yup, chuck in a Dynavector or a Benz first, then, if that doesn't bring things up to scratch, add the Trichord, though I think you won't need to.

  12. #12
    Super Wammer
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    Looking at an SME 10 + series iv arm wired with silver litz + same for arm cable + ESC modded Denon 103 which Mr Dealer reckons is the bees knees on cartridges without spending a bomb. Comments from vinyl heads appreciated.

  13. #13
    Contains mild peril browellm's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by monya View Post
    Looking at an SME 10 + series iv arm wired with silver litz + same for arm cable + ESC modded Denon 103 which Mr Dealer reckons is the bees knees on cartridges without spending a bomb. Comments from vinyl heads appreciated.
    For that sort of money, have you seen the Scheu Analogue setup for sale in the classifieds? Looks glorious.
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  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by browellm View Post
    For that sort of money, have you seen the Scheu Analogue setup for sale in the classifieds? Looks glorious.
    That's a lovely TT package and after hearing unclepuncles Scheu a few times I would agree its well worth considering.

  15. #15
    Lord Coco of Wigwam i_should_coco's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by monya View Post
    Looking at an SME 10 + series iv arm wired with silver litz + same for arm cable + ESC modded Denon 103 which Mr Dealer reckons is the bees knees on cartridges without spending a bomb. Comments from vinyl heads appreciated.
    Re: the cartridge, I really dislike them, and I can't see it working in an SME IV anyway - even the fans reckon they need a high mass arm.

    I'd look for a Kuzma Stabi / Stogi S and a decent cartridge (Shelter, Ortofon Cadenza, or such).
    Last edited by i_should_coco; 15-09-2011 at 12:35 PM.
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  16. #16
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    Hi Robin,

    Given the quality of the rest of your setup, I'm not surprised you found the Rega lacking. The Planar 3 offered a substantial insight into what is possible from vinyl for a ridiculously low sum, but it is hardly the last word in ultimate quality and you will have to spend rather more to achieve that. As a plug and play solution, you might consider the Clearaudio Emotion, which comes with the Signify arm and Maestro (MM) cartridge. This was very well reviewed by the Hi Fi press and sounds excellent. Beyond that, the bigger Clearaudio decks or the Scheu advertised here are real gems and wonderful conversation pieces. Both offer an exeptionally spacious, relaxed and open sound that would, I think, prove more that an equal to your Nagra. Top it off with a decent MC (Ortofon etc) and the little Nagra phono stage or an ARC PH5 and I think you will be amazed. Most of these can be found ex-dem or second hand with a bit of patience. The only problem then is that you will feel the compulsion we all feel to furiously collect as many records as possible, but contrary to rumour there are plenty of places that sell new stuff for less than twenty quid a pop.

    Congratulations. You have seen the light.

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  17. #17
    Super Wammer
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    'The light' is shrouded in mist at the mo. I'm not fond of taking a punt especially when a few K are at stake but I see little alternative. You can listen to a few decks/arms/cartridges out there but it's meaningless unless they are in my system, and that is almost impossible to deliver. Others opinions are helpful but again may not reflect the reality with my kit. Off to Walrus to hear the SME tomorrow but whether I'll leave much the wiser is another matter.
    Saw the Scheu in the classifieds but Edinburgh is too far - I travel but not up there!
    I'll give up soon. Pity I'm away when the Whittles show is on.

  18. #18
    Sssshhh Shut The F..k Up It Cost How Much!?!'s Avatar
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    So you have an old cart that probably hasn't had many hours. Most companies engineer carts to sound a bit bright and then calm down after about 50 hours (except Linn, who start OK and then go dull sounding). This could be your problem. The comments about the RB300 are also correct, it rings like a bell, hence the weights and hole drilling.

    If you use it for a while and it doesn't calm down, and you want a change without spending a load of cash, try a Logic DM101 with a decent arm/cart. Easily the equal of the SME 10 IMHO.

  19. #19
    Wammer
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    I don't know the Corus, but the Dynavector is excellent and not prone to sibilance - though it does take a few hours to fully break in. You should however make sure your current cartridge is properly aligned. I think I read somewhere about a downloadable protractor. I still use a freebie from Popular Hi-Fi which has an ideal curve, a plus and minus 5mm curve, and an oval slot for a centre hole to allow for different arm lengths. Very useful.
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  20. #20
    Wammer
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cable Monkey View Post
    The congested mids are a consequence of the resonances of a standard Rega arm. It is the reason for the foam filling and holes drilled in modified Rega arms. Sibilance can also be a consequence of overtightening the mounting nut of the RB250. It shouldn't be as big a problem on the steel shafted RB's. You have two choices. Start again or address the weaknesses of the Planar 3. That all depends on how far you want to take it, but be aware that a lot of improvements calm that dynamic character down so you may lose some of what impresses you in favour of what others might consider greater fidelity.
    No, the congested mids are a consequence of the shortcomings of the turntable. Easy to demonstrate by fitting the same arm and cartridge to a better deck.

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