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Everything posted by Smokestack

  1. Yes, It's always nice to have some great sounding albums which allow the system to show off a bit ... But the real proof of a system is how enjoyable it manages to make the less good recordings in our collection. The best systems excel at this ...allowing us to focus on the music and not the sound .
  2. I suspect that in those circumstances I'd enjoy the digital playback as much as the vinyl . The digital file would be of the best possible quality and there could only be further information losses in its transfer to record and playback of the same. I do still wonder though, and despite all it's additive distortions, whether the best wholly analogue recording and playback captures something of music that digital cannot resolve .
  3. Trouble is there's no unit of "musical engagement " ...we can't measure it , so many will tell us it doesn't exist. Old analogue Luddites like me are always being told that what we like is the euphonic distortion ...but I've never believed its quite that simple .
  4. Me too. It remains a weird thing...but as sonically faultless as some digital recording and playback appears to be ...It's never done it for me at an emotional level. Records do ...but less so modern ones from digital masters or transfers. [ I still usually find these Digitally mastered and often over compressed LPs more rewarding than the equivalent CD's, digital streams or downloads ....maybe because the digital resolution of those masters is better than that of the digital files available to stream or download ? ] It's always hard to put this stuff into words... but there's a lot more going on than just the "pleasant vinyl colourations" that some folks lazily point to when debating the pros and cons of LP. There is maybe still more musical information in the bottom of a record groove than even the best digital recording technology can yet capture.
  5. Tend to agree with Kelly .The sonic differences between the cables themselves are probably more significant in our typical context.
  6. LP12 upgrades ? There are always dedicated engineers at Linn looking to find genuine sonic and functional improvements to the old LP12 . this day the LP12 remains a steady and reliable gravy train for the Headquarters accountants. [One thing I have sometimes pondered down the years is whether brains at Linn have ever come up with something that departs from the essential LP12 design so as to make it unfeasible as a retrofit upgrade to the existing product....thereby raising the unthinkable and subsequently rejected prospect of a completely different design ! In the mean time the LP12 has remained a classic example of engineering evolution... just as the Porsche 911 came a long way from the VW Beetle ]
  7. Nah, It's just old and tired. Probably not much thinking of any kind involved in it's history . Fact is, there have been a lot of LP12s built, over about 45 years now ! ...and the condition of the older surviving examples is not going to improve with bed rest .
  8. True in many a context, ... but with regard to hierarchy, its still sometimes difficult to convince folks that the bits you can't see are the most important bits .
  9. In my experience normal domestic furnishings and clutter have always been able to do a good job with the fine tuning of listening rooms. Recent trends towards minimalistic furnishing haven't always been helpful. A good load of randomly distributed clutter in a room can work wonders for the acoustics... ....and some of the worst listening rooms I've ever heard have resulted from half baked attempts at acoustic engineering !
  10. The requirement is essentially for everything to keep still whilst it's moving about ! That's the minor contradiction that turntable designers are always up against
  11. Ah , yes the old Yorkist currency , minted from locally mined liquorice. Daft as it sounds , little squares of Chivers jelly might actually work quite well until they dried up ... a sort of culinary Sorbothane .
  12. I've no issue with most of the detailed advice offered above [particularly with regard to the vital condition of the main bearing and the arm bearings] but I would comment that a less than perfectly centered and straight arm board is not necessarily a issue in itself. With older decks that haven't perhaps had the suspension bolts carefully "trued" to perpendicular , or where the arm board is a little skewed on the sub-chassis, the best suspension adjustment may be found with the board a little off centre or out of angular alignment . I mention this so as not to introduce too much paranoia amongst the less experienced folk reading these pages. Dimpled over tightened top plates and/or less than securely fixed armboards are amongst the most common but less easily spotted issues with older decks...which will certainly not sound right until it's sorted . Easily fixed...but you first have to know about it ! Oh bugger ! Now I'm causing the paranoia .
  13. And, of course, many second hand decks are already made up from component parts of varying age and specification .
  14. Lots of informative stuff from folks above ... ... I think the bottom line is that you either have to really know what you're doing with an LP12 or buy it from an accessible respected dealer . If you don't have the luxury of a dealer within reasonable travelling distance ...then think at least twice ! With regard to the age of the deck ... In all cases, condition of the vital parts is critical . That said , an LP12 of any vintage , if in good working order , will deliver a wonderfully rewarding musical experience. But if you think that you'll then want to embark on a long term upgrading path, the older ones may not be the best value for money in the long run unless you have a friendly local dealer with lots of used bargains available on a regular basis.
  15. I think most folks appreciate that using an expensive high end moving coil in a budget arm isn't the best idea, neither in mechanical compatibility terms, nor in value for money terms. The grey area is maybe in that £300 to £400 price range, where we typically find higher end moving magnets and lower range moving coils. An arm like a Basik Plus [when in good nick] also occupies a sort of grey area . It has good enough bearings to cope reasonably with the higher levels of energy which many moving coils typically push into the arm but doesn't really perform at a high enough level to extract the best from them . The sensible approach is perhaps to judge the cartridges purely in cost versus performance terms, ignoring whether they happen to have moving coils or magnets. A Basik Plus will likely deliver decent value for money with a good £300 to £400 cartridge ...but above that level , allowing for taste, you probably won't hear any great further benefit.
  16. Different thread .... but the answers are maybe pretty much the same . The Basik Plus arm has historically worked just fine with modest Moving Coils like the Audio Technica ATF series . It will work with more expensive moving coils too. But the question is then whether it will enable those moving coils to perform any better than a well chosen Moving Magnet. It's been a long while since I've done any direct comparisons in this context ...but whilst the ATF-3 or something from the new expanded OC-9 range might be a very viable partner, I think you might on balance get a more "right sounding" result with something like the VM-750SH moving magnet at a similar cost [...or indeed with a good AT stylus on the K9 !] [As an illustration from my own experience .... When I was awaiting delivery of a new Ittok around 1982 I briefly used an Osawa Mirage OS60L in the Basik Plus. [This was a something of an Asak clone, about as good as the slightly later Linn Trak, and available at the time for silly money due to some importer deal]. It worked just fine ...but sounded different rather than better than a K9. When the Ittok arrived...the OS60L was then able to demonstrate that it was better than the K9 ]
  17. The Mayware was a cracking little arm for the just had to keep an eye on that eccentric counterweight , which could rotate over time to bugger up the azimuth adjustment.