David, once you've done it once--it's not that difficult. It takes time, patience, and a little practice to get the overhang, VTA, azimuth (not all tonearms have this adjustment), and tracking force right. Then you also need to load (impedance matching) the phono stage appropriately for the cartridge you are using. I've done this several times, and by no means consider myself and expert, but at the same time feel I can do a better job on my own rig than a dealer simply because some of the adjustments require listening--and I will take far more time than a dealer will. I was taught how to set up a table by a guy who was commonly referred to as the Analog Doctor in the NY area--can't remember his real name. It cost me $100 to have him set up the table and teach me how to do it. While there are probably some good articles--seeing how it's done first hand is what worked for me. If you have a relationship with a dealer who is into analog, ask them who sets up their turntables. Chances are, this person may do work on the side, and may for a reasonable fee set it up and teach you how it is done. Then you can read the articles (Michael Fremer has written several) about how to maximize your set-up, but until you have the basics those articles won't be much good. The other possiblity is you may live close to another a-goner that would be willing to help you. I have helped a few friends in my area set up their turntable after they got it back from the dealer (supposedly set up correctly--but it wasn't).
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