“If” I upgraded my TT to the 1980’s

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Stratman55, Mar 5, 2019.

  1. Stratman55

    Stratman55 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Rotherham
    A kind of “what if?” scenario, and I’m unsure whether to do this yet but I like to have an idea just in case it happens. And this is the place.

    I was brought into the “proper gear” era around the early 80’s I’d had music centres, record players, midi hi fi, but while talking to a guy at work he mentioned his LP12 with about £12k of amps, speakers, arm, cartridge etc. What an idiot I thought, until I got the invite, sat in his listening chair & basically cried.

    In the coming years, once I could afford to jump in, I went through all combinations of Rega Planers, Arms, pre’s, mono-blocs, speakers, bi-wired, everything I could think of, but something was always missing. I think it was a suspended deck? Thinking back everything I loved had this and all my TT’s were solid plinths. Not LP12 money, but Mitchel, Roksan, Systemdek, I loved them all but kids & bills decided it wasn’t to be.

    So, cut to now. I’m running a Pioneer PL12 and I love it. Serviced, Suspension repaired, Ortofon 2m blue fitted and a Rega Fono in the post, it handles pretty much everything I play. If I were to get another TT do I go for a new Rega, Pro-Ject, maybe Funk Gett at a push, or look at a 30 year old which I used to drool over?

    Just a thought.
     
    Randoms, CrazyCatz, McLover and 2 others like this.
  2. TheVinylAddict

    TheVinylAddict ___The Enforcer___

    To use baseball analogy:

    At bat and playing right now: 1982 Pioneer PL-70Lii (piano concerto)
    On deck with the next LP: 1981 Yamaha GT-2000L (phish picture of nectar)
    In the hole with another LP: 1985 Kenwood KP-1100 (scorps live)

    Currently on the bench waiting their turn: 1983 Denon DP-59L, 198os Micro DD-8 and 1989 Technics SL-1200 Mkii

    I love late 70s to late 80s TT's --- just like many of our other favorite vintage components, the hey-day......

    And yes, I really do have six TT's set up in my main room currently. Don't ask how many I have stored! :)
     
  3. Stratman55

    Stratman55 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Rotherham
    How many do you have stored? :laugh:

    Seriously, that sounds like a lot of fun you have there. I love vintage equipment but as it’s a new entity to me is new better? I have 55 year old ears stuck on an engineers head. Probably not the best, medical say fine, but is it nostalgia or is the old stuff just better? One Pro-Ject I heard a few years ago rang like a bell. Entry level but still not pleasant.
     
    timind likes this.
  4. TheVinylAddict

    TheVinylAddict ___The Enforcer___

    LOL Too many.... lets just say it won't be long till I am selling a few off --- but that was the goal from the start - try them and cherry pick, sell off what I don't want. Up next -- preamps! :)
    "Better".......... I stop trying to answer that question with audio gear long ago............. "different" and acceptable to my standards are the way I qualify.
    Well, 56 here, with the same head and background configuration. We have a lot in common.
    Welcome to the hamster wheel. Upgrading is not the medicine....... it is an elixir leaving you craving more.

    :help:
     
    Stratman55 and timind like this.
  5. noahjld

    noahjld Der Wixxer

    Forget Rega,pain in the ****.
     
    Danilo and Stratman55 like this.
  6. Daddy Dom

    Daddy Dom Lodger

    Location:
    New Zealand
    There were some really great tables from that era and one of the best things about them is that many can be improved where worn, or where better tech has come along since.

    As you've shared, you had a better connection to the music and to the artists' intentions over at your friend's place - this is why we do it. That's not a nerd/tech thing, it's pure and real joy!

    Your PL12 has a great many fans but if you go for another (yeah!) I'd suggest something quite different - maybe an older linear tracker, something un-sprung like a mid-range Pro-ject, a refurbed Thorens TD150/160 etc or even a Garrard Zero 100 Mk4 - the world is truly your oyster!
    Hope that helps,
    DD
     
    Stratman55 and timind like this.
  7. Andy Saunders

    Andy Saunders Forum Resident

    Location:
    England
    @Stratman55 why bother if you are happy with what you have?:)
     
    Stratman55 likes this.
  8. classicrocker

    classicrocker Life is good!

    Location:
    Worcester, MA, USA
    Depends on what your budget is but if you want a set and forget I suggest looking at the excellent Direct Drives of the late 70's early 80's. They offer a painless setup and minimal maintenance required.

    I have my original Technics 1700 MK II DD which I tuned up a few years ago and it is an excellent reliable TT and offers the benefit of a removable headshell so you can easily try different cartridges.

    The late 70's/ early 80's was a golden age for these affordable, reliable direct drive rigs so you have a number of choices from the big name audio companies of the day.
     
    nosliw, patient_ot, Zensound and 3 others like this.
  9. timind

    timind phorum rezident

    Location:
    Westfield, IN USA
    I currently have a Pioneer PL-15DII belt drive (1975-6) and a Pioneer PL-7 direct drive (1982) and can't say I prefer one over the other. They both track nicely, maintain correct speed, and sound great. The PL-7 looks like a cheap turntable but runs really well.

    If I had to chose on sound quality, I'd chose the PL-7 for it's speed accuracy and arm. If I was going on looks, I'd pick the PL-15DII for it's retro beauty.

    As long as you choosing a table built before the CD age, you should be good.
     
  10. Dhreview16

    Dhreview16 Forum Resident

    Location:
    London UK
    If you love your PL12 stay with it.
     
  11. Dubmart

    Dubmart Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bristol, UK
    A properly set up PL12D stands up really well against low end modern decks, one of the best used bargains out there, with new and used prices what they are you'd likely need to spend a lot to get something obviously better, stick with the PL12D, but try and hear Regas, Pro-jects and any vintage decks you can just to get a better perspective, if something takes your fancy then go for it, otherwise enjoy what you have.
     
    Randoms, patient_ot and Stratman55 like this.
  12. Stratman55

    Stratman55 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Rotherham
    Brilliant replies, all of them. I figure I’m good where I’m at and if an LP12 or Xerses comes my way then maybe. I’m really enjoying the Pioneer at the minute and to be honest it makes me smile every time I play it. Will it get dull? Will it keep doing it? In reality I’ll probably end up like @TheVinylAddict but I’m not chasing the holy grail
     
    TheVinylAddict, Dubmart and timind like this.
  13. Zensound

    Zensound Forum Resident

    I have this table w/ AT95 cart and it sounds/performs great w/ the exception that the auto return circuit is fried.
     
  14. Ghostworld

    Ghostworld Senior Member

    Location:
    US
    Are you Sure it is the circuit and not the belt on the auto return motor?
     
  15. Zensound

    Zensound Forum Resident

    Yes, belt replaced w/new band ; tone arm won't lift &return when record is done , have to lift and stop then hit the return button to shut off motor; annoying but was only $35 and spent $30 for new phono jack cable repair.
     
  16. classicrocker

    classicrocker Life is good!

    Location:
    Worcester, MA, USA
    I don't want to hijack this thread so this will be the only response to your issue but the small belt you mention is only part of the tonearm mech. There are a number of gears involved and one, in particular, is known to be prone to cracks. If the cracks are big enough the gear spins on the spindle and the arm return will not work. The gear in my 1700MK II was cracked but still in one piece so I stabilized the cracks with epoxy using a toothpick to avoid gluing the gear to the spindle. That seemed to do the trick and the gear works properly.

    I bought one of these replacement gears just in case my repair job does not hold up and I need to replace it eventually but this ebay listing shows you the gear assembly and the gear that cracks.

    Technics SL 1600mk2 1700 MK2 SL-D33 SL-Q33 Turntable Tonearm Gear Replacement | eBay

    Also, the old lubricant on the gears hardens with time which can impact the arm action. I cleaned mine with just a little deoxit on a cue tip and relubed with synthetic grease. My tonearm works smoothly again after this tuneup.

    Not saying this is the issue with your rig but it might be worth taking the bottom off the unit and having a look see as you may be able to fix the arm return with any luck. You will have to remove the arm to get to the gears.

    Even if you don't want to mess with it you got a stellar turntable for little money.



    Interesting tutorials the 1600 has a similar arm return mech

    Technics SL 1600mk2 Servicing
     
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2019
  17. Slick Willie

    Slick Willie Decisively Indecisive

    Location:
    sweet VA.
    Find out what else your bud had in his chain.
    The cart and phone pre has much to do with the sound signature.
    Even which pressings he was spinning can mean just as much.
     
    patient_ot, Stratman55 and Nick Brook like this.
  18. Nick Brook

    Nick Brook Forum Resident

    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK.
    I'm living in the past with a 30 odd year old Rega 3 and an Ariston rd40 , both bought new .They were serviced last year , they run and sound lush
    I've often looked at contemporary decks , but nothing really melts me butter. Well nothing easily affordable that is.
     
    Stratman55 likes this.
  19. Stratman55

    Stratman55 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Rotherham
    He was a fanatic @Slick Willie. His lounge had 1 chair facing his speakers with his system in the middle, no TV. I’ve lost touch over the years but I know back then £6k for an arm & cartridge was the norm. His interconnect probably cost as much as my deck (it was the pure silver era) He mainly ran mono blocs, sometimes Naim or an obscure (to me) make. I remember a tower of Linn amps at one stage and a bank of valve units. He had his room mains supply altered and used to use power supplies before they became the norm. His leads were cloth wrapped and platted and he had 24c gold rod in place of the fuse in his plugs. Bear in mind this guy would listen to UFO, Leonard Cohen, Jethro Tull, Sabbath and then buy an 18 hour Opera box set on a certain label and sit through it end to end. He was very selective of the label, especially with classical, not my thing, some had to be Decca, some by a certain conductor. He bought a Meridian CD player when they came out, it lasted about a month. :agree:
     
    timind and Nick Brook like this.
  20. Stratman55

    Stratman55 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Rotherham
  21. Slick Willie

    Slick Willie Decisively Indecisive

    Location:
    sweet VA.

    Cool. Best not to look for the magic by matching just his table.
    A Linn was it? Very fussy table...will need support for adjustments.
    Rega is a lightway design with added stiffners, needs good isolation and careful cart selection. They are purt much plug-n-play though.
     
  22. Stratman55

    Stratman55 Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Rotherham
    Yea, LP12. It may be fussy but not as much as him. I’d never be able to match him. Probably my best set up was a Planar 2 with the RB300? arm & a decent hand me down cartridge into either Cyrus or ITL pre +2 powers. I used QED silver anniversary wire, a weeks wage interconnects feeding early KEF’s (I think) and still wanted to bin it after a visit.
     
  23. anh165

    anh165 Member

    Location:
    United Kingdom
    The LP12 is hifi currency, fun sounding platform but not a cheap way to enjoy records.
     
  24. Nick Brook

    Nick Brook Forum Resident

    Location:
    Yorkshire, UK.
    My brother had a system that probably cost more than my house , I'm not exaggerating . His hifi stand alone was £4grand , the tackle in it looked like something from NASA . His subs needed Drax to come on line to keep 'em running sweet . It's insane.
     
    Stratman55 likes this.
  25. TheVinylAddict

    TheVinylAddict ___The Enforcer___

    Nah, I recommend maintaining some semblance of sanity :) one junkie around here is enough!
     
    Stratman55 and Slick Willie like this.

Share This Page