All this assumes stereo records that are RIAA, which is fine if you care to
limit yourself to stereo or mono that was recut to RIAA.  

Steve Smolian

-----Original Message-----
From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List
[mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Stewart Gooderman
Sent: Saturday, March 15, 2014 2:03 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] WSJ article on vinyl playbackl equipment

What about buying a half-decent stereo receiver? Are the pre-amps in these
units so inferior? Then attach speakers to the receiver.


On Mar 15, 2014, at 8:34 AM, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> One other comment about this "starter" vinyl system. It will definitely
produce far superior sound to vintage record-wreckers, anything sold by
"Crosley" and most other catalog-sold self-contained "record players." If
any listmembers or their friends/family are considering plungeing into vinyl
(it'll be a deep dive before you're done, be forewarned!), I recommend the
> 1. read the manual carefully to your turntable. Understand how to align a
cartridge. You will not enjoy playback without a properly aligned cartridge.
Any of the Technics-like Chinese turntables can use the Technics alignment
gauge/headshell holder. You can still find these little plastic do-dads for
a few bucks from Needle Doctor or KAB. You can find a good, useful alignment
grid from Sleeve City.
> 2. also from Sleeve City, you will find several options at low cost for
record cleaning, I would say that the Spin-Clean is the minimum system
likely to properly clean the records you get for a buck at the Goodwill or
yard sale. There is a good stylus cleaner sold by Sleeve City, too. They
also sell reasonably-priced record crates. The assemble-yourself model, for
about $20, can be copied if you have a few wood-shop tools. It's very useful
for keeping your "in rotation" records near your turntable.
> 3. finally, from Sleeve City or the place in Rochester NY (which is more
costly than Sleeve City), invest in good plastic-lined inner sleeves. Always
dump old paper and plastic inner sleeves, and dump most of the inner sleeves
included with new-issue vinyl, especially those pink plastic inner sleeves
used by Sony. A few cents invested will save a lifetime of scuffing on the
record. Vinyl "guru" Mike Fremer makes a convincing argument that if you
clean and store your records properly from the get-go, and keep your stylus
clean always, and set your cartridge tracking angles correctly, and track at
the light weights recommended by the manufacturer of your cartridge, your
records should not wear out over hundreds of plays. Antique record-wreckers
will destroy your platters from the first play forward.
> 4. A good phono preamp will sound superior to what's built into any of
these "USB turntables." I would say that should be your first upgrade. There
are many choices under $200 that do the job well.
> Bottom line, if I were starting out in the world of LP records, I'd set it
up this way:
> 1. Music Hall USB turntable - $250
> 2. Shure M97 cartridge - $100 or Denon DL-110 cartridge - $130
> 3. Cambridge Audio phono preamp/USB ADC - $230
> 4. Audio-Technica ATH-M50 headphones - $150
> 5. figure $300-500 for a good headphone amp, more like $500 if you want a
decent USB DAC so you can listen to your laptop or PC.
> 6. if you want powered speakers, there are many choices at many price
ranges. Anything with a woofer smaller than 8" will not give you very good
bass response, so figure on a subwoofer.
> -- Tom Fine
> ----- Original Message ----- From: "Steve Ramm" <[log in to unmask]>
> To: <[log in to unmask]>
> Sent: Saturday, March 15, 2014 11:04 AM
> Subject: [ARSCLIST] WSJ article on vinyl playbackl equipment
>> Not to start a discussion but for those who don't get the Wall Street 
>> Journal you might enjoy reading this if interested in NEW "Home" 
>> playback
>> equipment:
>> _Svelte  Systems for Spinning Vinyl - WSJ.com_ 
>> (
>> 9433222363701870-lMyQjAxMTA0MDEwNTEx
>> NDUyWj)
>> Steve Ramm