Advice for my first turntable/arm/cart please help

I am asking for advice from my audiogon friends on what will be my first turntable. If looking to give suggestions please see my system link below. I am considering the following tables based on what I have read: Nottingham Spacedeck w/new Spacearm, Michell Gyrodec, VPI(don't know which one), or Teres. I most likely will buy used and without auditioning which I know is frowned on. I have found that with much reading and talking with agon friends I can usually know what gear I will like before buying. I have never set-up a tt before so I would not consider myself a d-i-y but I would like to attempt to set it up on my own. I do have a friend who is into vinyl that I could call on if needed. I plan on using the phono stage of my DK integrated to start but will be looking into outboard phono like EAR or K&K Audio. I have been reading many many threads but would like some input/advice from owners of the following tables that may save me from making a mistake. My listening tastes are rock, blues, jazz,etc. Honestly I listen to everything but classical. Any good places to audition turntables in metro detroit in case I decide to purchase a new table? Thanks to everyone in advance.
I like yourself live in the detroit area and found good advice from Harry at Audio Dimensions in Royal Oak.
He handles many different lines of turntables.
Give him a call at 248-549-7320
Out of your list of tables I really ony know the VPI. Pretty hard to beat but I don't know that I would trust a used one.

Pro-ject is not bad if you wanted reasonable price on new tables.

Thorens is available again (though not apparently the same table) and not too expensive.

Used Thorens is hard to beat.

Used Denon DP-62L if you are not real sure you want to stick with vinyl but want an easy to use table that can be used by anyone in the house.

Try a cheap Grado cartridge at first. The entry level cartridges are a big bang for the buck. I don't relly like the Elan for the money. The Sumiko are good if you want MC.

The phono pre on the DK is not a bad preamp. In fact the whole DK integrated is jam-up for 3K retail. If you find you want a change that you would notice try the Project Tubebox. It has the subsonic filter, tubes, and is probably the only reasonably priced phono pre that is going to give you a marked improvement over the DK.

Good luck.
Hi, I will second the advice to see Harry in Royal Oak, I bought my Clearaudio Emotion from him and he really does know his stuff. On a bizarre side note I'm interested in hearing the DK amp so if you're interested I would bring the table over and you could hear one in your system and I could hear the amp.
The VPI Scout and Scoutmaster are hard to beat. I would have no hesitation buying one of these models used, they're well built and there's not much to go wrong. The integral JMW-9 tonearm is quite good. On a budget, keep in mind that you can buy the Scout and upgrade to the Scoutmaster at any time down the road. My only concern would be the used cartridge, not the used VPI.
There are no bad choices among the brands you listed, that's a high quality shortlist. Owners of each will sing its praises, probably rightly so.

If you can't audition them try to get your head into what makes each one special or different. These days that's all many of us can do. It's what I did and I ended up a happy Teres owner. Its mix of features, design and costs made sense to me, but only you can figure out which mix feels best to you.

There's plenty of used activity in VPI's and Michells, which is both a good and a bad thing. If you plan to buy used you should probably forget Teres. You could grow old waiting for one, we're too busy listening to consider selling them! Consider that my biased recommendation for the one I own. ;-) The same seems to be true of Nottingham BTW. At any rate it's the other brand on your list, along with Teres, that has no listings in the A'gon blue book.

One caution about the Scout (not Scoutmaster): many owners have found it necessary to add the SDS, a Walker speed controller or change motors to get consistent speed. I don't know if new Scouts do a better job but a used one might present you with an unexpected upgrade "opportunity". Worth looking into before choosing that model.

My grandfather was mayor of Royal Oak or Pleasant Ridge about 60 years ago. It still looked pretty good when I was there 40 years ago. If there's a good audio dealer there today then they must still be taking care of the place. Good to know.
Hi Doug, I'll respectfully disagree just a bit with one comment you made: I don't hear any speed inconstancy issue with the VPI Scout in my listening experiences to them in other people's systems. Speed always seems very constant to my ear. But, the addition of a motor controller (SDS or Walker) *will* make a noticeable overall improvement on the Scout and many other AC-motor turntables (including my current turntable), so it does make a worthwhile upgrade at some point - just not a necessary upgrade as your comment might suggest. The upgrade to the newer 300 rpm motor (from the original 600 rpm motor) may be a different issue, and a used unit is likely to also have the older 600rpm motor.

As you know, I currently don't own a VPI turntable, but (in the spirit of full disclosure) I've been a long-term user of the earlier HW-19 series model from VPI, so I'm also recommending a 'table from a manufacturer I've lived with in the past. Cheers.
Suggest you consider a Scheu Premier Mk II. The nine inch arm plinth with standard platter can be had shipped for around 1600. Add a SME from Hong Kong for 800 to 2100 (M2 is 800, 309 is about 1000, series IV is 1600 and the series V is 2100. That is about half of what they cost in the US. Extremely good engineering and easy to setup.

The Scheu is in the same performance league as the Teres, Michell, and higher end VPI products and is only sold factory direct by Scheu. The least expensive Teres is the 160 and the plinth and acrylic require finishing. The least expensive ready to play Teres is around 2500 for the 245 rosewood model. Add tax an shipping and you push 3000 plus an arm and cartridge. The Scheu is about a grand cheaper.
You may have nailed it with the distinction between the older and newer motor. My concern was (or was meant to be) consistent with that observation: older Scouts *may* have a speed stability issue.

The least expensive Teres is actually the 150 ($1,890) not the 160.

The only components of the 150/160 that require finishing are the plinth and armboard. The platter and everything else come ready to plug-and-play. Whether one wants to do that is a personal choice of course.
Ok, everybody is weighing in with their favorites, so I might as well too.

A Nottingham Spacedeck is an excellent contender. I recently replaced my 5 yr. old Spacedeck with a newer one with the Ace-Space arm. The improvement is pretty substantial and I imagine comes mostly from the new arm, which now replaces the 3K Anna arm in their lineup. Better dynamics and rhythm & timing along with increased detail and resolution is what I'm hearing.

Long story short....the Nott gets my vote in your price range.

It's been years since I've heard one of those Anything tables, Francicso. Could you expound on its virtures! ;-)
Thanks for the suggestions from everyone. It will be a little while before I am able to buy anything so I will keep reading and make sure I get to listen to some different rigs before I buy. Mthieme please let me know if you want to try to work something out to meet. Maybe I could bring the DK by your place. Email me if you want to try to figure something out. Thanks to everyone.