Raven more open,better bass ,more dynamic,more musical.
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What arm and cartridge?
What motor controller?
Whats the rest of the system?
It all matters. In general Bothe tables are above average by a long shot. After that it comes down to preference. I've dealt with most of the Basis line (own two of them) and setup Raven One and AC3.
I like both tables. In either case setup is vitally important. I can make (have made) both sound really good so it's really a matter of taste and what you are looking for. You can't go wrong with either one if all of the very general questions I posted above are taken into account.
Dunlavy SC-4 speakers, Air Tight ATM-3 monoblock amps, EAR 88PB phono preamp, Dynavector XV-1S and Benz Ebony LP cartridges, SME IV.Vi tonearm, but possibly going to Reed arm w/copper wiring and Eichmann copper bullets. I like a sound that is slightly romantic i.e. some warmth in lower midrange/upper bass. Don't care for dead on neutral, very clean, tight sound.
I have a 2001 and two of my friends have Raven Ones; they have Graham Phantom arms and I have a 2.2. From your description I think you would like the Basis better as you have described the sound I hear from the Raven as what you don't like. I hear the Basis as warmer and a little more romantic with probably a little less bass extention. HOWEVER, since we all use different speakers and electronics it is hard to be too positive about it.
Stanwal...Your last sentence obviously can be pretty telling. It's why I'm hoping there are some who have listened to the two different tables using the same associated equipment, and have been able to note the separate contributions of each table to the system's sound. Of course, this is a pretty uncommon occurance. Still, I appreciate your impressions and welcome those of any others. Based on what I've read elsewhere without the two tables' sounds being isolated, it seems the Raven would have the edge on warmth. In any event, I'm curious to hear what others will say.