Perhaps - did you mean VPI super platter vs. Classic aluminum platter?? If so...the aluminum has a lighter sound than the super platter which reaches deeper into the bass region. Its just a matter of taste.
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The Superplatter is considerably better; I liked the acrylic platters better than the aluminum. I am old enough to remember when VPI switched from aluminum to Acrylic because it sounded better; Harry told me they switched back because they could no longer get the quality of acrylic they had been getting.
Not having gotten a chance to har he new aluminum I wonder how good it is myself.I know one guy here (wish I could find him in systems if he is there) made a plinth out of a solid billet and told me he researched what aluminum was a type must inert (grade gain or structure),But Supper's be they 25 or 30 lbs have more mass and inertia.I have mentioned this before here but best platter was TNT V which weighed over 20 LBS and was made of methylcrelet (if I remember correctly) lead and steel and was told by a few people I trust never use a mat even an expensive copper or synthetic with the V.I wonder if this holds true with aluminum,But of course the older ones did not have newer inverted bearing (good?not good?).And no ring clamp.But Harry had to stop making them because of EU regs and the lead.I have spare and know even the Scout can get it albeit with more stress due to weight.But yeah it is a bummer that now it's only aluminum unless you buy a HRX which has the acrylic steel sandwich.No mas for more mass right now.
That foxy Harry, at it again. He is a marketing genius. Keeps selling you the 'new' and diss the 'old' based on quality issues, EU regulations etc. I have an Aries I, and never brought into the 'change', like the motor built into the chassis. My God, he sells like it was always the 'second coming'. No offense, Harry does make great products, just watch your wallet.
Thank you for your responses. I have the Super Platter on my Super Scoutmaster, which is better than the standard acrylic platter that came originally with the table. I read a couple of reviews that give the Classic aluminum platter glowing reviews on an Aries and on the Classic 3 tables. I understand the VPI exchange charge is about $150.
The aluminum platter Classic is a very good table. There are many other factors that impact sound along with the platter--the arm/cart, setup, phono pre, cables, etc. Platter is heavy with a lot of mass, seems damped enough, and sounds quite dynamic and deep/wide soundstage to me, with my equipment and setup.
If you already own the super platter, my opinion would be to just buy the aluminum platter and not exchange your super platter. The aluminum platter/bearing is $800 per VPI's current price sheet. Test them both out and if you don't like the aluminum platter, I'm sure you can resell it for $650+ thus negating the $150 exchange charge. If you like the aluminum platter more, I've seen the super platter sell for $800+ reguarly so you'll likely be out $0. Just a thought.
The VPI super platter is a rehash of the TNT 3,4,and 5 platters which are superior to solid aluminum (that rings).
The old TNT (I like the TNT 3) platters were Aluminum, cork, lead, acrylic, sandwiches, balanced to aerospace standards, and cost fortune to manufacture. They were the best!
Harry has gotten lazy and cheap, and wants profit over quality, going to easier to manufacture, and cheaper, solid acrylic and aluminum. It shows in everything they now make!
The super platter was the last good platter by VPI!
VPI has gone to high profit, and "New is better BS" over basic good design quality, because that sells!
Everything VPI made before the "Scout" turntable was "real" quality!
I recently traded in my Classic for an Aries 3. Before the Classic was sent back, I swapped the Aries 3's acrylic platter for the Classic's aluminum one. No two ways, the metal platter reached deeper into the bass than the Aries' original platter. As the dealers insisted on having the Classic back in original form, I've ordered a new Classic platter for my Aries. Hope to get it this month.
If you've notice, the newer Clearaudio tts are not using acrylic platters.
Own Super Scoutmaster with acrylic platter, upgrade to SSM Ref with super platter and it was a significant upgrade.
I also own Classic, it does have a lighter tone than my SSM Ref but then they have different cartridge on them (though from the same maker).
My super platter had to go back to VPI due to thermal cycle causing it to not perfectly aligned any more. Per Mike, he said this was a "common" problem and major reason for VPI to stop making it.
Mike kept it for 3 months and could not fix it. He just mailed me back a refurb from a trade in. He was more than happy to send me a new Classic platter, but I insisted on super platter because I like the sound more. He did not disagree with me.
I was the original poster on this and have since replaced my Super Platter with the Classic platter, which was later upgraded to a Classic platter with inverted oil-pumping bearing which Harry had custom-made.
The Classic platter is much better sounding IMO than the Super Platter. While the Super Platter was better than the original acrylic platter that came with my original Super Scoutmaster, the Classic platter is much more lively, dynamic, with clearer more natural sound. The Super Platter was dark sounding and veiled dynamics. As to Stringreen's point the Classic platter is also much better with the rim drive which I have. I have also upgraded to the 3D tonearm, which is a big improvement over the JMW 10.5i arm.
One of the great things about VPI is the ability to upgrade the platter, motor, tonearm, bearing, feet, etc. "if you want to."
It is pretty close Stringreen, but the Direct Drive is in a class of its own IMO. I've heard it on a few occasions. The Classic Platter fitted with the inverted oil-pumping bearing Harry which had made for me sounds even better than the standard Classic platter I had previously as the new platter spins with less resistance and more ease using a few drops of light synthetic oil instead of the Super Lube or white lithium grease.
Interesting. Notwithstanding any possible theoretical advantages, I have never understood the practical advantages of inverting the bearing. Like many other changes, I wonder whether its main purpose is reducing production costs.
The original non-inverted bearing sits in the bottom of a pool of light synthetic oil and has no need for pumping. Simple and efficient. I use Slick 50 Synthetic, which used to be a factory recommendation.
That's just so much BS. Of curse he can make a non-inverted bearing. He did so for many years. There are VPI tables made with non-inverted bearings that have been working perfectly for almost 40 years. Not to mention tables of other manufacturers. They are much easier to keep properly lubricated. Perhaps that's why they last so long.
There is no anger here. I respect and admire VPI. They have been making great products for a long time and their customer support has no peer. Yet like many others in the high end they often make changes for economic reasons, or for regulatory reasons, and advertise the result as offering superior performance. Like some of the writers above, I am also partial to the older acrylic platters.
But how can you pass along the suggestion that non-inverted bearings will deteriorate in 6 months in the face of so many such tables from VPI and other manufacturers that have been doing fine for generations? Some of the finest tables currently manufactured use non-inverted bearings. I can't believe that Harry said that. If he did, I can't believe it could have been taken seriously.
Mel- I never said that non-inverted bearings will deteriorate in 6 months. Harry said the design of non-inverted bearings will want to move after 6 months. The bearings according to Harry are hardened to Rockwell 60 and are so tough that they are extremely resistant to wear. You can't cut them with a saw or knife. My understanding in reading between the lines on my own research on precession is that non-inverted bearings after awhile may be noisier versus inverted bearings and may possibly increase rumble, but both bearings at this hardness level should be very long lasting.
I had the original acrylic platter with my Super Scoutmaster, and upgraded to the Super Platter, and then to the Classic platter with custom inverted oil pumping bearing. I personally prefer the sound of the Classic platter over the other 2.
My experience with VPI is that Harry is an inveterate music lover, audiophile, and gifted turntable designer. He is always pushing the envelope to further improve his designs. One of the great things about VPI is the ability to upgrade a platter, motor, bearings, tonearms, footers, etc. "if you want to" or not. No one is holding a gun to my head to do this. I choose to push the envelope with certain upgrades. in the end it's really all about enjoying
Yes, that's the theoretical advantage I wrote of. But as a practical matter, given the solid performing longevity of standard oil bath bearing TTs out there, I fail to see a practical advantage of the inverted type, unless it's in the cost of manufacture. The practical advantage of the oil bath bearings is just that: the oil bath.
I got intrigued by the inverted bearing Classic platter and looked on the VPI website. On Harry's forum back in April he discussed the topic at length. When asked if it might become a standard item in their catalog, he responded that he was considering making up a batch of them if there were enough interest, but never mentioned how to express that interest. I currently have a belt-drive SSM Reference with a super platter & Boston Mat2. I have been following the debate here about the relative advantages of the Classic vs. Super Platter for several years. I was never swayed by the Classic camp enough to try a Classic platter until now. If enough others are interested, maybe we can get VPI to do a run of them.
Mcbuddah, there is the standard inverted bearing for the Classic platter, which uses VPI super lube or white lithium grease. I had this platter, then upgraded to an inverted bearing with oil pumping bronze grooves in the platter, and I use a light synthetic oil (Liquid Bearings). This is a custom order. Sounds like you are talking about the oil pumping inverted bearing, not the standard inverted bearing. This is a worthwhile upgrade as platter turns with more ease and less resistance and is quieter.
I'm a long time VPI user.
VPI, to their credit, constantly listens and updates their product line for better sonics.
Here's the problem... they leave their customers out in the cold as far as being proactive in regards to their upcoming product lines or their ongoing product line issues and how that relates to their loyal customers ongoing issues.
I know of no other company anywhere in America that has such a strong loyal following despite of this companies' inability or pure lack of trying to be proactive in regards to their product updates, their product failings, or their product's future. It really is remarkable!
It's almost like they view us, their customers, as their own form of advertisement! In spite of all of the failings, somehow they make it work. Wow!