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More Rega P1 questions

 

New member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 10
Registered: Apr-06
(hi jan...hope you see this...you've given me some good advice before, and i could sure use it again...although other thoughts/suggestions are welcome too)

here's my situation...i needed a 2nd turntable for transferring my lp's to digital files...i chose a P1 for practical reasons. my "main" table for now is an AR ES-1 with a Rega RB300 tonearm and a Shure V15VxMR to go with it. after i'm done with my "lp project" by 2009 (i have a lot of lp's to work on, whew!), my plan is to add a glass platter and put the RB300 on the P1 (making it my main table)...and my aging AR will eventually end up being the "other" table (with the P1's tonearm).

now, here's my first concern...since the transfer of lp's to digital files is the only purpose for the P1 at present, i'm just trying to avoid extra expenses for an upgrade...at least until i'm all done with the project. i'm actually new to this digital process, and i don't know if upgrading the P1 (or even changing the stylus or cartridge) now would make much of a difference for a digital transfer.

so...would a "stock" P1 (with the om-5) be adequate enough for transferring lp's to digital files?
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9384
Registered: Dec-04
fagen, you are not transferring digital files. You are converting analog to digital, and the best possible analog signal is the one you should use.
Always. The 300 arm and OM5 cart is not likely to be the best match, simply because a better cart, say up to a Dynavector 10x5 would best use the arms ability.
If you are going to do this once, maybe do your best?
A 10x5, after selling the stuff you don't need, would provide the better signal for the conversion.
Which conversion are you using?
Phono stage?
Do tell.
 

Gold Member
Username: Stu_pitt

Irvington, New York USA

Post Number: 2332
Registered: May-05
Why a second table? Do you feel the current table isn't good enough?

The RB300 on the P1 probably won't be worth it. I'd go with a P2 as a minimum, but more likely a P3. The P2 and P3 have better plinths, sub platters, and motors which all effect the sound. Less vibration, a quieter motor, and more stable speed all equate to very audible results.

In regards to your transfering LPs to digital, the better equipment you have, the better the end result. The analog signal is getting digitalized. The cleaner and more pure the analog signal is, the better the less work you'll have to do in cleaning it up digitally - if you have that option. If you're using software to clean up the signal, you'll lose something. There's always a trade off.

If you don't have the bandwidth, resolution, timing, and so on going into whatever's digitizing, you won't have it after its been digitized. You may be able to add some of it somehow, but how will the end result sound?

If you're digitally archiving vinyl and want the best sound possible, you should get as good of a turntable, cartridge, and phono pre-amp as possible.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 11
Registered: Apr-06
nuck,

yes...i meant to imply that i was converting analog to digital (if you prefer that i use that term)...however, i did NOT say i was planning to use the RB300 with the OM5. read my previous post again if you care to.....anyway, i may have failed to point out that my "main table" has nothing to do with the conversion process. that's strictly for listening purposes only (in another room). i only meant to switch the tonearms after doing the conversion thing. in the meantime, my AR remains "as is".

based on your suggestion that i should use the best possible analog signal when doing a conversion, i guess i better upgrade the P1...starting with the glass platter. i'm assuming the original P1 tonearm will do the job if i switch to a much better cartridge...and since i'm no fan of the OM series myself, i'd rather go for a 540 MKII if i decided on an ortofon. a 10x5 has been recommended to me before, and i agree it's also a cartridge to consider. i was also considering a grado (i hope they don't hum with rega tables), so let's see how that goes...

you were asking about what conversion i was gonna use...i haven't decided yet, although i was thinking about the stuff on dak.com.....
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 12
Registered: Apr-06
hi stu.....thanks for the feedback. i'll take your words into consideration as well, as all good advice will help me make the right decision(s). my original post may have been misconstrued, so maybe i could have done a better job there...

i'd love to have a P2 or P3 if i could afford it (heck, i wouldn't even think of switching tonearms with a new P3)...so let's just assume i already have the P1 for the "archiving process" if this'll make my inquiry clearer.
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9386
Registered: Dec-04
Well fagen, I can recommend the creative labs XPro card that I use. The outboard I/O has the RIAA curve that far outshine others.
If you are using standard recorder, it matters little.
If you want to do it once, do it right. And have fun!
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 13
Registered: Apr-06
nuck, i will look into your recommendation. in the meantime, could you check out this product and tell me what your impressions are? i'd appreciate it if you'd give it a peek and compare it to the XPro. here's the link:

http://www.dak2000.com/Reviews/2020Story.cfm

wow, it's 6am from where i live. i better hit the sack......will be back.

thanks!
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9394
Registered: Dec-04
fagen, I can't offer an opinion from an ad.
It reads like any other ad, plug and play.

The contents are there, the RIAA curve and whatever program that they use, so it might be great, it might not.
Sorry that I cannot help more.
Get as much info as you can, and be sure that it doesn't just make MP3's.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 11825
Registered: May-04
.


Yep, pretty much what they said.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 11826
Registered: May-04
.

On cartridges, Grados did have hum problems with Regas. The new motor used in the Rega line supposedly eliminated the issue. Any dealer should be able to inform you what to watch out for when pairing a Grado with a particular table. If they can't, they should give a guarantee for their advice and return the cartridge if you have problems. If you are buying locally, the cartridge needn't be installed on the arm to check for hum. Just connect the tonearm wires and move the cartridge over to the label side of a LP with the motor running (you might want to remove the belt as a precaution).


The mid line Grados are excellent mates to the RB300. But don't go over board on a cartridge as neither of your tables support the need for anything like the Dynavectors. Step up in the table and you'll get more from a cartridge no matter the cost of the cartridge by lowering noise and increasing rigidity. But don't buy more cartridge than your table can support or allow you to hear the benefits of the money spent.


.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 14
Registered: Apr-06
hi y'all...let me just ask one more thing on cartridges: i'm all for a classic/warm sound, so i thought of a grado gold because a reference platinum may be going "overboard" on my turntables (based on jan's post).

...but let's assume the grado's out of the question due to hum issues.

which other budget cartridges (in your opinion) would be the closest thing i could get to the sound of...say, a V15VxMR?

jan, good point on the benefits of stepping up in the table (simplifies what stu was tryin' to tell me earlier)...IF i decided on a P2, would it still be worth the time and/or trouble of switching the RB300 from my other table?...or is the P2 already good enough as is? how big is the difference between an RB250 to an RB300 anyway?
 

Gold Member
Username: Nuck

Post Number: 9398
Registered: Dec-04
A Grado Blue won't expose the table so much, and still has a good Grado sound. That is a good thing.
And as advised, you can check it out for hum beforehand.

I would move the arm. It really ain't hard, and the P1 andP2 tables have a common armboard/platter height. If they are different, the dealer carries 1,2 and 4 mm spacers for the task.
My new rb300 is dead silent on the vpi table, but thats more likely the table than the arm.

Go ahead, JV, tellfagen about your cast off table, and why it ain't got no arm?

fagen, sit tight for Jan's rb250 arm, and how well it takes the mods. Mitchell arms do a lot of stuff, but a few simple changes make the 250 very good.
 

Gold Member
Username: Stu_pitt

Irvington, New York USA

Post Number: 2335
Registered: May-05
"IF i decided on a P2, would it still be worth the time and/or trouble of switching the RB300 from my other table?"

Any way you can buy the table without the tonearm installed? Maybe you can find a used P2, P3, or P25 without a cartridge and install your RB300.

Or you can sell your RB300 and put that money and what you currently have towards a new P3.

Check out Audiogon for some ideas.
http://cgi.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/srch_fs.pl

Maybe a local Rega dealer has a used Rega deck. Maybe they can order a new one without a tonearm.

Maybe I should stop saying maybe...
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 11828
Registered: May-04
.

There's a bit of discussion about whether the RB250 is better than the RB 300. To me it's splitting hairs. Both are excellent arms and I would simply advise you to do what makes the most monetary sense to you. Both take upgrades well but the table is almost always the first consideration. If the table's not as good as the arm, the arm and cartridge simply will be held back by the table's noises and minute mistrackings.


I would advise to buy the best table possible and then settle on the arm and cartridge. If your budget limits you to a P3, then we're not talking "this is better than that" and "this should come before that". Generally you consider table - arm - catridge in order of importance. But the Rega arms are very good and can stand up to a better table than Rega actually manufactures. So you'll get a lot of opinions about which way to go and obssessing over whether you got the "best" is ridiculous. Buy a good combination and start listening to the music.


.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 15
Registered: Apr-06
thanks again for the input, guys. i wish it were that simple to take in all your good points and...presto, done!

allow me to clarify: i live in a third world country where having choices is not an option. i can only go with what's available here. the 2nd-hand audio market here is a joke (to make a long story short)...and protection for consumers is an even bigger joke. i refuse to order a turntable by internet, partly because of the risks involved with shipping and handling. if anything wrong would happen on that end, no one here would claim responsibility...not to mention all the hassles involved to get it fixed, exchanged, or refunded. you guys would have to live here to fully understand what i'm getting at here.

in the case of rega, the local distributor does not carry any tables without a tonearm...nor do they carry any accessories. i would have to purchase a P1 glass platter (for example) through ebay or audiogon. oh...they don't carry any P2's either. the reason? the distributor feels that there's no difference with the P1 so they feel it's not worth carrying (yes, you may join me in cringing). surprisingly, there ARE a number of audio brands available here than one may think...but repairs/availability of parts are another topic altogether. in this country, things can be difficult esp. with brands that have no MAJOR distribution (like most non-japanese brands). sure, the products come with warranties...but where i come from, it's mostly bullshit (sigh).

actually, i'm still happy with my current table. the RB300 with the shure is very quiet on my AR...and if i didn't have to do this "conversion" project, i wouldn't have brought it up in the 1st place.....i had hoped that a P1 with a decent cartridge would have been good enough for the project, because the truth is: that may be all my budget would allow. i understand if a P1 for conversion won't be good enough for your standards...but surely, i think i could do a lot worse. my rega dealer is offering me a free rega bias with the P1 since he knows i'm repulsed by the outdated OM line. i'm not yet familiar with the sound of rega cartridges, so i asked my dealer (who also carries grado) for more time as i'm still checking on grado's hum issues with the new regas. nuck's recommendation of the grado blue sounds logical for my budget...but if the rega bias will do the job and won't expose the table as well, so much the better (i could use your opinion on this).

guys, thanks again for the feedback. i learned new things for sure. sorry for the length this time, but i felt i had to explain where i'm coming from.....if it's not too much to ask, i could still use more recommendations on cartridges for my current table (replacement--budget to mid-priced--for the V15VxMR, unless the shure's still available--grados are out of the question with an AR)...and who knows? i may just end up using my current table for my project. it's an option that would save me a lot more money, as the thought of having 2 turntables in this day/age can also be hair-splitting. this way, i won't have any 2nd thoughts of going for the P3 (my dream table) when it's time to bury the AR later on.
 

Platinum Member
Username: Jan_b_vigne

Dallas, TX

Post Number: 11830
Registered: May-04
.

" ... I would simply advise you to do what makes the most monetary sense to you."


I don't know why the AR/Rega isn't what you want to use in the first place. Buy the Rega cartridge with the Rega table if you go that route and stop worrying. If you're concerned the Grado might hum with the Rega and you can't check that out before buying the Grado, then it doesn't make sense to buy the Grado when the Rega works with the Rega. If you want to buy the Grado it should work on the AR. Either way you'll have a decent table/arm/cartridge system.


But you're making this harder than it needs to be.


Enjoy the music.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 16
Registered: Apr-06
"I don't know why the AR/Rega isn't what you want to use in the first
place."

...because that's my listening table!...and the conversion will take place in another room due to matters of space. i didn't want to be moving my AR back and forth from room to room, so i thought of buying the P1 just for the conversion...SO it's either that...OR use the AR and be without a listening table till the project is done cuz i ain't moving it back to my listening room once i start on my project. i'll come to that decision soon.

it's frustrating that i feel misunderstood after all i've said...i was afraid my last post was too long that this might happen. the fact that no two audiophiles think alike doesn't help either. i still need suggestions for other cartridges other than grado for my AR...so if i won't get it here, i'll ask somewhere else.

still...thanks to all 3 of you for everything.

till the next topic...
 

Gold Member
Username: Frank_abela

Berkshire UK

Post Number: 2573
Registered: Sep-04
fagen,

Rega sells its turntables complete all over the world. It isn't possible to buy their turntables without the arm as far as I know. The only option you get is the cartridge.

I am no lover of the OM series and agree with Jan that the Bias sounds like a really good deal. The Rega cartridges are also not real friends of mine since I find them a touch noisy and lacking in bandwidth. That said, they're a LOT better than the OM series!

I think the Grado Prestige Gold is a superb cartridge but I ahve only tried it a couple of times on a Rega deck. I had not noticed hum at the time, but if Jan says they used to hum, then I'm prepared to believe him. If that's an issue and you don't want to go with the Rega cartridge then, I'd not go too crazy (as Jan says) and go for an Ortofon 2m series cartridge. The Blue is a very nice cartridge indeed. Ortofon have stopped making the 500 series which was a fine series indeed. The 2m series is the replacement.

I have not tried placing a P3 platter on a P1. I'm not sure if it'll work since I haven't looked closely at the P1's sub-platter. I would not rely on this as an upgrade path. The most important part of a turntable solution is the turntable. The way it feeds the energy to the disc and leaches it away when generated in the playing is all part and parcel of the design of the deck. By changing its components, you will have an effect on the deck which is not necessarily going to be right. You might strike lucky, but you might not.

Regards,
Frank.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 17
Registered: Apr-06
frank,

thank you for your feedback. i really appreciate it. the main thing i learned in this discussion is to give the most importance to the turntable before a tonearm or cartridge. that being said, i'm sticking with my current table till it gives-in...i won't even think of what turntable's next till i get there.

so...i'll talk cartridges for now (i hope you're still with me)...i didn't know that ortofon already stopped with the 500 series, but i see that Needle Doctor still carries it (along with the 2m series you mentioned). in fact, i'd like to share with you the recommendations they made for me:

"In my experience, Denon and Dynavector cartridges have proved to be good replacements for the V15s. They have the same smooth, relatively neutral character. If you're interested in pushing the top end of your budget, the Dynavector 20x actually has the same tip as the V15. The Denon DL110 and 160, as well as the Dynavector 10x5 and 20x are great physical matches for the RB300.

The 530 is a decent option, it's got the detail handing of the OM series, but it's a little more laid back.

Steer clear of the Grados. They sound great, but are susceptible to hum on the inner tracks. This is the case for both your AR and the Rega tables. This isn't an issue with Project tables, though, so keep them in mind."

first of all, that settles the issue of grados with regas...and jeez, everyone seens to love the dynavectors. if only the 10x5 were half it's price, i'd probably go for it. anyway, what do you think of the denons he mentioned? i'm not sure how he really felt about the ortofon 530. in my book...when a salesman uses the word "decent", it could go either way.

i'll be going to hong kong right after new year. if i see the 10x5 at a steal, why not?...but assuming it won't be, it may come down to a denon or an ortofon. i could use more feedback on this. which one would come closest to the V15? (damn, why did shure have to stop making 'em?)

thanks!
 

Gold Member
Username: Frank_abela

Berkshire UK

Post Number: 2575
Registered: Sep-04
Sorry fagen, no idea about the Denons.

I think the 500 series is a fine set of cartridges. The 530 is good fun. The 540 is more cultured but still retains the fun.

The Dynavectors are a different class. I use the top of the range Dynavector, and have used various Dynavectors since the early nineties, so I'm well biassed.

The fact is the 10x5 costs more than a P1 so it's not really a sensible option. Sure, it'll sound better than the other cartridges but then in my view it beats a V15 which I've never really had time for - I'm a moving coil man since I find the problems of MM cartridges quite distracting. The fidelity and immediacy of coils is my bag.

So that's where I'm coming from...

Regards,
Frank.
 

Bronze Member
Username: Fagen

Post Number: 18
Registered: Apr-06
no problem, frank.

i already have the 530 among my options.

fyi, the denon models mentioned are high-output moving coils.
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