I did at the Rocky Mountain Audio Fest. In fact I went just to view and hear turntables. After seeing and hearing Teres's Redpoint's, VPI's and SOTA's, I much prefered the SOTA Millenia. Let me know wht SOTA says about an addtional arm as it is a concern I have as well.
Turntable selection is a personal choice.You have to factor size,and your ability to accomodate some of the rather large "Beasts",as well as price.There is a TON of really good designs,in quite a few price categories.I LOVE a load of them.I can't wait to win the lottery,so I can collect.
That aside,as an owner of the latest COSMOS,and a SOTA user for twenty years,I have to say that I've never experienced any bearing noise,or vacuum problems,as some competitors like to believe exists.I am not married to this product line,but they are absolutely superb,when you factor sound/features/size/price.Personally I like the Cosmos way more than the Millenia,which is really the same table,but without the gorgeous housing(the Cosmos has the same,very effective "Swiss Cheese" sub-assembly,but you don't have to look at it),and the Millenia dispenses with the motor on the NON RESONANT subassembly,and puts it in a cute seperate housing,which cannot be as effective(though I'm sure it works)in speed stability,as placing it on the sub-assembly.Hey everyone has their own tastes.
One thing that has always confused me is,why would one want a belt,and innerworkings of a moving system to be exposed to the environment(ever see the stuff floating around,when the sun comes in a window at a certain angle?),when there is a sealed alternative.Surely the probability exists that the belt on my old Cosmos lasted 12 years because it was not exposed to environmental contamination,as some non sealed systems do.I'm probably going a bit overboard here.Just food for thought.
I heard this table as well at the Audiofest and overall liked the sound vey much.IMO a bit better then the VPI's I listened to ,and definately better then Teres from the show conditions.The SOTA was more accurate,But for my personal favorite I prefered the Oracle V by a wide margin from all the other tables I heard at the show.This table just is so accurate from bottom to top in the proper reproduction of the accurate sound of the tonal colors in the orchestra.
I've had mine for 3+ years and have never looked back.Built like a tank and lets you hear what's in the grooves.You will be hard pressed to find performance as this for under 20k IMHO of course.
Hi Speedy and all, I'm curious as to why you think that moving the motor to a seperate subassembly makes it necessarily less effective. Most every table these days has decoupled the motor from the plinth. I do suppose it is dependant on what base the whole shebang is siting on. I like having a belt exposed. While I agree that it lends itself to gathering dust and debree I see this only an issue with the rubber belts. A string or milar tape should not be a problem. But even with a rubber belt a little Simple Green works wonders.
I do like the metal plinth, heavy platter and composite armboard. The vacuum hold down is also a major feature. I'm still waiting to hear from Sota on the dual arm possibility which is another major feature I'm looking for. I should have called them, but I'm not in that big of a hurry.
Dan,you must understand that this is all only my taste.Lots of stuff is viable.Though I can't see the ever so popular desire to have more than one arm,and cartridge.Unless one has an extensive mono collection,as well as stereo stuff,but that's JUST me!!
Hi Speedy. Yes I know that all of this is personal tastes and choices. I also know that you enjoy discussions on this audio stuff so I was just attempting to engage a bit. Your posts do get me thinking.
This dual arm thing started for me on my last table and I had a Vector and Graham 2.2 tonearms. I do listen to many kinds of music, classic rock, blues, jazz, some country and bluegrass, and from time to time, classical. I found that there was a very noticeable difference in sound when using the same cartridge on either arm with different types of music. Both were very good, but one combination would sound a little better in some way than the other. But I grew tired of spending 20-30 minutes swapping arms and there was no way to really dial in a step-up then remove and replace it and have it be the same. This is all probably due more to the engineer in me than the music lover. I'm trying to please my yen and yang at the same time.
The vacuum hold down is a feature I have just recently added to my list of desired features. I wasn't real impressed with the clamp on my last table, a little too susceptible to clamping pressure. I suspect the weight solution would be even more of a problem. Reading about Sota's vacuum sensing system sounds like it would be a very good alternative.
I'm still looking for my next table so I'll probably change my mind several times before settling on something.
would you mind saying why you got rid of your basis 2500
just ready for a change? or something else. you seemed to
be a big fan.
I guess you could say in the simplest of terms that I was just ready for a change. I have been fortunate over the last several years to be able to devote time, energy and money to this hobby. (My wife is great! She's put up with all of my hobbies over the years.) The table is not the only system change I have made lately. I recently replaced my BAT preamp with an Aesthetix Calypso to mate with the Rhea I've had for a while. The Calypso was an experiment and taught me that there is a whole other world out there that can be found with tube rolling. I am a huge fan of BAT and their rock solid equipment produces wonderful sound, but I've got to spend some time in this tube rolling world. To help on my journey I've also added some Rogue M150 mono-blocks to power the mid and upper drivers of my 10t's. More tube rolling in these the last few days and I'm starting to get some scary good depth and realism to the soundstage, even with my CDP. Hopefully with all of this as background you can see where I'm coming from.
The two arm setup is something I really want to do, however a dual arm 2500 is $9000 without the arms and I still wouldn't have the vacuum hold down or an upgraded speed controller, etc. Basis makes very good stuff and a Vector Model 3 tonearm is also on my wish list. Believe me I have had to keep telling myself that the 2500 is really gone. I just need to take a different journey for a while.
Dan,if you want some voicing options,equal to the difference in sound between two arms,get some different brands,but high quality NOS tubes.This will definitely give you a bang,for the buck.Unfortunately it'll probably cost as much as the additional arm,with the prices for good NOS being absurd,these days!!In my phono-stage I currently have KILLER Siemens CCa's.I,also have two different sets of superb Ediswan phono tubes(as back-ups).Different characteristics with the Ediswans having a bit more swagger,but the CCa's(mine are lower noise than almost any previously available)that I have are like listening to GOD's phono section.Only a fellow hobbyist,like you could understand!
Dear Dan: I agree with you: the vacumm hold down is a very desirable " must " in a TT. Basis and Sota are good examples on it.
You can try to find ( second hand ) and Audio Technica vacuum hold down platter and " open " your TT choices . Then you can choose, for example, for an Acoustic Signature Mambo TT that is a multi-arm TT at very good price and is a great performer too.
Looking at your very fine system: maybe a XV-1 Dynavector cartridge can give you a lot of music pleasure over what you have today.
Regards and enjoy the music.
Speedy, I'm just beginning to learn what you already have found with tube choices so I do appreciate the "God's phono section" description. (Good chuckle on that one!) That technique you mention about voicing with the with the tubes is something I had not given serious thought to. I mean the idea is right there in my face but I hadn't connected the dots. I haven't started seriously buying tubes for my phono stage yet but I'm already down over a grand with driver tubes for the amps and some good Telefunkens and Amperex in the pre. But with the excellant results that I'm getting I do believe that this "tube sound" is the major part of what I've been looking for. The depth, ambiance and timbre are all there, with my damn CD player! Oh well, it's a no lose situation. The last two tables I've bought because I was there at the right time. That's just what it took to get me where I'm at now. This time I want to take some time and make an well though out decision on this one.
Thanks and keep those ideas coming!
Thanks for the suggestions, Raul. I almost bought an Acoustic Signature table here in the listing, but waited to long. I no longer have the Basis so I'll have to wait until I get another table to try the Dynavector.
BTW-Dan,Sometimes the best thing you can do,to aid you,in this hobby(and it will cost you nothing),is to make an attempt to hear a few really good set-ups,that other hobbyists own.Bring some of your own program material to listen in these systems.It is easy(with common sense,and a good ear)to get a feel for differing presentations,and system voicings,which can influence us to move closer to a specific set of performance parameters,we may hear and like.Sometimes it's only an adjustment,but what happens frequently,is that we learn about what is important in reproducing what we are ultimately striving for.I have been greatly aided by this,and it has given me great cause to think things through.I've benefited,in musical terms.Live music IS great,but you have to hear other set-ups to compare to what we already "think" is accurate.I hope this makes sense!
thanks for the reply and i agree with sirspeedy about
the tubes. i also own the 10-t's but the 2 best changes
i have made are putting two telefunken CCA'S into pre-amp
(pse-hybrid) and siemens into my phono pre(arc ph3-se).
That is very good advice about listening to others systems. I've met a few audiophiles in my area, New Hampshire, and none that are into vinyl as much as I am. But I keep looking.
Still no word back from Sota. I'll keep trying. I'm a little short tonight, sinuses are all screwed up.
One quick comment. I agree about live music. I find live music of all genre much brighter than most systems reproduce.
Dan,it has nothing to do with the actual sound of live music,which is influenced by hall,acoustics etc.Live is,well,live!!Of course it is the best,but NOT reproduceable!!What I mean is that,as you gain experience,you can notice the little things that a "music reproduction system" can do,if really well set up.For ex:I can tell when my cartridge downforce/vta/damping is off.To me,this is the sound (exagerated,of course)of a rock being dragged through a plowed groove!!You lose that sense of beauty in the music,here.Flutes lose air,harp notes suck,and small bell tones sound hard.Sometimes it is easy to confuse this resonant,yet inaccurate sound,with greater air,or dynamics,or life.Wrong!I can pick up un this in other set-ups too.Same goes for line condition interactions,as well as room acoustics,etc!!There is a host of plagues we don't know we have until we hear someone with a better set-up.Then we have a chance to correct our own problem,should one(usually there's quite a few,we didn't realize we had)exist!!
I got an email back from Donna at Sota. Pretty much what I had expected. She says that a dual arm configuration can be done but it would be in the realm of special ordering.
FWIW, Donna and Kirk provide truly outstanding service, IMO.