Buying a new TT today

So I’m pretty hellbent on buying a new TT today! Or should I be?!?!? 
I started off kind of sour on vinyl several years back when I ignorantly bought a cheap TT that had a built in phono stage.... Talk about a disappointment! And a buzz kill for vinyl!
Anyway a year or so later I bought a Project Carbon Debut and it blew my mind!!!!  The step up in most aspects of the TT, carbon fiber tone arm/heavier plinth/much heavier platter/motor and remote position/better cartridge in a Ortofon m2red, along with the fact the it was now running through my Integrated’s Phono Stage was just such a leap in sound that I never expected, that now I’m looking for yet another leap like that again lol
Anyway, with pocket flush with cash and headed to two hi-fi shops I pause....
In my new price range, $2,000 or so, should I be looking for a new TT? Or a new cartridge for the TT I have ?

Showing 15 responses by aj523

Wow thx. Good info.  Look at any dealer online that sells Rega,  the P10 is $5,695 and if you get the Apheta 3, its only a $1,000 extra with a total of $6,695. And its installed directly by Rega so its perfect.  The cartridge on its own is $2,000. 

With the usual 10/15 percent dealer discount, the price winds up being around $5,700, not bad with that beefy power supply.  

The 20/20 with LPS , i got a demo for $2k.  So $7,700  all in.  I researched the 20/20, and with the LPS, its supposed to perform as well as his $4k Duo.  The engineers and sales guys I spoke to were pretty much in consensus that the Rega with the Sutherland phono is a better combo than Regas own phono at the same price point.  Even the KC VIBE was preferred over the Aria and thry are definitely making less margin on that advice! 

This is fun.  
GasBose and OP
On behalf of sogogear and myself, definitely apologize for hijacking the thread and will refrain after these last comments. I just got into 2 channel TT vinyl during this pandemic and I absolutely love it and wanted to express my uncontrollable upgrade fever.

I was definitely not smart about it. My advice to others: stretch your budget and go for the best TT you can afford, since that’s where the analog signal starts (this isn’t digital) and then upgrade the rest of your system over the years. AJ out.
Yeah i pulled the trigger. PLANAR 10 with Apheta3 cart coming Thursday. 
Thanks for the history lesson - I did not know really any of that and THATs my EXACT point....many consumers with money do not either and so i was just commenting in my opinion, (which I'm allowed still in this (my) country, perhaps that will change though),  that  it seems like a bad idea from a marketing perspective. It turned me off in another direction right away. 
So here's my quick  story.  Always digital -had a cd or bluray player in my home theater using the dac in a variety of pre/pro's.  I live just outside NYC and while hunkered down in quarantine in April I got the itch to go analog and vinyl and set it up in my living room. 

 Did a bunch of research and bought the Rega 3,  Sutherland KC vibe phono and powered ELAC ARF51 tower speakers which are an all analog design.  Elegant. Simple. All analog. No digital. Started building a vinyl collection. Have about 10 so far.  It sounded so good and better than any CD set up I've ever owned. 

But Loved it TOO much I immediately got upgradist fever and swapped the 3 for the Rega 8, and swapped the vibe for surherlands 20/20 with sep power supply. 

Now I'm going thru it again and looking at a Linear tube audio w40 integrated amp, a rega 10, and salk  SS9.5 speakers.. 

Moral of the story this is a sickness and my advice is to get the best TT you can afford and then slowly build around it. 

I hear you and i have no idea if the P10 is worth it. Its actually one 50 percent with the same Alpheta cartridge. But still.  I read the reviews and the youtube videos and its intoxicating lol. So im like what's another $2k.   I know at some point I need to upgrade my speakers but thats another story. 
The engineers have told me that it really depends how much you want to spend. To get a quality direct drive that limits vibration due to the motor being directly underneath, you need to spend at least $3k, if not $5k.   Originally I was way under that, under $2k and was told by everyone ( and i mean the real scientists and dealers that carry both), hands down belt drive over direct drive at that price point.  It's worth revisiting for me now...
Splitting hairs I know,but assuming one gets the 8 or 10 with the new Alpheta 3 cartridge (which every dealer and review online recommends doing) the difference in cost is 50%. $4,395 vs. $6,695. My dealer (Audio Advice) gives me 30 days to decide with a full credit including shipping cost. I have the Sutherland 20/20 with LPS coming in today so will compare to the KC Vibe.

AND if I’m going to spend $6k+, should I reconsider and look at DD (as suggested by some posters here)....

But I really do LOVE the Rega and TT’s with their engineering philosophy are their niche for 50 years.
Why do the Technic TT’s primarily target the Dj crowd and other professionals? I even saw one ad targeted to the audiophile consumer but the marketing slogan said something like "spin records like your favorite Dj ". Odd.  That kinda turned me off when I was looking. 

Good timing. Just arrived today and the whole package from the ceramic platter to the absolutely massive separate power supply to the cabling to the tone arm, is several grade up from the P8. I only listened to one record, the one i know the best, Come Away with Me, Norah Jones and its a dramatically lower noise floor. She never sounded so intimate.. Out to eat now, but more later.
@cd318 and the @chakster
Sorry no idea what you are talking about. Because I asked about upgrading a stock cable that means I’m trying to change everything on this incredible machine?

Guess what? You can’t tweak the hell out of a Rega and that’s what makes it so special unlike other DD and other designs. Its not meant to be upgraded so not sure what threads you are talking about where people are trying to upgrade everything. 

Rega isn’t going to put a $300 power cord on their table, they use a basic power cable that they didn’t design and its the law of diminishing returns....but that doesn’t mean its necessarily a complete waste. I was just asking anyway. Jesus.  So glad i didn't go with a Technic or other DD design. They are ugly too.
TT is on a flat stone slab.  Perfectly level with meter.

Thanks for the tips and I will certainly look into it. I was trying not to do all these audiophile type improvements like cables. Are you using the stock cable for the power supply?  I always get upgraditis on that. 

I  started looking at after market mats and so confusing,  I called Rega UK this morning and the tech guy told me under no circumstances should I swap out the mat that's made specifically for the P10's ceramic platter. So glad i did that.  Maybe I'll ask Rega tomorrow about replacing the stock cord. 
Seriously, c’mon dude....I'm just getting into TT’s and 2 channel stereo (yes, a newbie) and I make the mistake of reading all over the internet by so called experts (none of whom I suspect are engineers) about replacement mats and other tweaks using these crazy adjectives, it gets me thinking..... But I’m smart enough to call Rega after dropping $6k and they set me straight and told me it will actually degrade the sound.. Meanwhile all I hear about with other TTs like Technic (which they used to sell at Toys R Us when I was a kid) is how people tweak the hell out of them and I wonder if those tweaks really work then why doesnt the manufacturer build them in?

And yes absolutely I will call Rega about the power cord. I meant to do so today but I thought it was Saturday as I have off for the holiday. lol

Fun stuff. But why is everyone so preachy?

@chakster I'm not into power cord upgrades but I'll call Rega anyway tomorrow. Their stand alone PSU is pretty impressive but I'm sure they will tell me not to waste my money.   Our first agreement and its on wasteful tweaks ! 

Btw, if you have a 30 year old Technics, you might indeed have the Toys rUs version ( that was for Sogogear) ! 

Thats why I left it up to the engineering experts at Rega where all these design considerations are optimized. Rather then expensive experiments where everyone has a different opinion on what’s the best combination of table, arm, cartridge and even phono stage.