All Rega single pillar arms are drop in replacements, along with Michell arms. The best choice would be a Basis Vector arm. There are others using the Rega platform that would also work. The difference between the Vector and another Rega is stunning in the best possible way. I replaced my Rega arm in a Basis 2000 with a Vector and it was a huge improvement.
Michell should be if they are the single pillar. The Graham Robin should also work and Origin Live. I bought a NOS Vector 3 a few years ago for about $1,300, so if you can stretch your budget a little and watch used ads you might be able to get a Vector close to your budget. It would be worth the extra time and money if you can find one.
Audiomods arms are fantastic and in your budget. These are completely reworked Rega arms, so straight drop in on your table.
Excellent reviews. I have (2) of them and they are indeed terrific!
+1 on the Audiomods Arm. Actually, the only part of the arm that is a completely reworked Rega is the arm tube itself. Jeff sources the latest version of the 1-piece cast tube from Rega, then strips off the paint and finishes the arm in either chrome or matte silver. He then installs interior stiffeners and drills anti-resonance holes in the tube. Every other part of the Audiomods Arm---every other part---is hand machined by Jeff, and are of his own design, having absolutely nothing to do with Rega. That the Audiomods Arm is a reworked Rega is a common misconception. There are lots of those around, but the Audiomods is not one of them.
Jeff machines the bearing housing and installs ceramic ball bearings, far superior to the common-grade steel bearings in Regas. Every single other part is also of Jeff's design and machining, and are superb. The yoke, the main pillar, the mount housing, the anti-skate, the counterweight (an amazing piece of engineering by itself!)---all of it, hand machined by Jeff. He even offers a micrometer for fine VTA/SRA adjustments on-the-fly.
The arm is offered at several different levels, even as a DIY kit. The best arm value currently available imo. A far better arm the popular Jelco's.
Well, besides a few small parts that mostly don’t affect sound quality, the main difference between the top model Series Five and the budget Classic is the bridged arm yoke of the former. Some of the parts standard on the Series Five arm are offered as upgrade options (stainless steel counterweight, alloy armrest, headshell shims) on the Classic, but when you add in the cost of them, you may as well have just paid the extra (the Series Five is 625 British Pounds, the Classic 455) and gone for the S5 straightaway.
The bridged arm yoke is NOT available as an upgrade for the Classic, and if you decide you want the micrometer (invaluable for fine adjustment of VTA/SRA), it also is not offered on the Classic. It is a 220 Pound option on the Series Five, only. The prices above, incidentally, include internal wiring of litz silver.
if you decide you want the micrometer (invaluable for fine adjustment of VTA/SRA), it also is not offered on the ClassicThat's not true. It's a 90 Pound option and includes the VTA lock.
I would just opt for the Series 5, (which I did). It's worth the extra money. I also have a series 3 or 4, I can't remember which.
Even if you can't afford the series 5, the Classic is a hell of an arm.