Heard a SOTA and I am pumped to get mine goin

I went to one of our Ears and Beers parties this past weekend and got a chance to hear a SOTA table and WOW what a nice sound!
Now he has an SME 4 arm with a Clear Audio Signature cart and I will be only running a Aurum Beta S Clear Audio cart with a Grado Signature arm but if I can get even in the ball aprk of his sound I will be thrilled, I am stilled impressed with how isolated the table was to external noise, banging on the table could not be heard in the speakers even slighly, and the vac and clamp made notable improovements in the sound. His SOTA has avery nice controlled tight but dynamic sound that really let vinyl shine against digital.
Well I just hope mine sounds close to as good as my friends, if so I should be a very happy camper, the table may be up and running this weekend (fingers crossed)
SOTA is a fabulous table, especially for the money. Which model did you purchase? Did you purchase your arm and cart yet? If you did not purchase the Cosmos did you upgrade your armboard to the Cosmos (makes big difference)? I have owned 3 SOTA's and just Monday ordered a new NOVA.

I welcome any questions you may have if I might help you get that wonderful sound you are looking for.
Thanks Sit, I have a SOTA Star/Saphire with the vac and clamp, it is fitted with a Grado Signature arm and will be using a Clear Audio cartridge.
I am just too intimidated to attempt arm mounting and detailed set up untill friends come by hopefully this weekend.
I owned a SOTA Star with the separate power suppply and vacuum pump. The best thing about owning it is that rather than having to go out and replace it for a few thousand dollars or more with a new TT, I was able to have SOTA refrurbish and upgrade the Star to a Nova Series V for a lot less. An incredible deal considering what a new Nova sells for. I also have the Cosmos armboard and it makes a huge difference. I have no doubt this table will last me quite some time as my Star did.

Enjoy yours Chadnliz.
You're going to love it! Once the SOTA is set up you do not need to touch it unless you get into tweeking. It's one of the easiest high quality tables to own. No fuss. I currently have an older Star Sapphire and had a Star before that. There are some tweeks that will even improve the sound but why hassle you with that. Simply enjoy the music for now. Great choice in tables. Keep your lps and stylus clean. Use a better quality tonearm interconnect. If you hear anything at all from the table while it is running without an lp playing know that the background should be dead black and that you probably simply have a minor grounding problem. There's a lot of information on A'Gon about this but I invite you to email me as well if needed. I may be able to offer some simple advice.


Any advice on tweeks and grounding you can offer? Feel free to email me if you like.
I also had the upgrade to the Nova series V.
A good as it was,I was surprised to be told by SOTA that an upgraded PC on the pump/power supply would make an audible difference. So, I had gotten a PC here on auction that wasn't quite as good as I would have liked for my amp or pre and decided to try it on the power supply. The result? Greater coherence and PRaT. Tried another PC and would rate it 3rd, leaving me with the impression that aftermarket PC's can make a difference here.

For those who live in houses that are not like the dust free laboratory chambers so often alluded to here, pet hair, progressive male pattern baldness, children and the dust to dust inevitability of life on earth may make a speck or two appear on their turntable mats. I've found that a sweater lint remover roller or the similarly designed Pixall MK 2 record cleaner roller pick up this detritus readily and leave no residue.
I also use an after market pc on the ps and vacuum pump with nice results. I have also heard replacing the stock umbilical wire connector between the TT and ps also gives some improvement.
Replacing the stock umbilical definitely improves sound,quite a bit.Seemingly rediculous,but my pal,and myself(who both have a COSMOS III)concur.You don't have to get NUTZ with mega buck umbillicals,but get something good.Just make sure the connections match.We,also use a good after mkt cord,but this should be no surprise.Though the suspension is superb,it doesn't hurt to have a good shelf/stand.The better,"the better" performance will be had.

Also,the vacuum sounds MUCH better WITHOUT the intermat.This is inargueable,and we have compared on loads of occassions.LOSE IT!!Peel the intermat off,and swab the glue with alcohol,to smooth out.Be careful,and you will be shocked as to how much more dynamic,and detailed it can sound.Keep the platter clean with a nice soft brush(like a make up blush/brush),and you will NOT develop noisy discs!!I get the distinct impression that the bullshit about vacuum systems sounding worse than non vacuum versions,or that noise develops easily,on LP's,was started by competition.Of this I'm convinced.BTW--I've had vacuum SOTA's for over twenty yrs,and have no new pops or clicks.Yet I exercise common sense,in maintenance.

Finally,the SOTA reflex clamp is OK,but can be improved.Here's what we do--Loosen the clamping action,so it actually rests on the lp,instead of clamping,which you don't need anyway.You want it to act as more of a weight.Stick a thin sheet of cork,YES CORK,under the clamp.You can buy this for about three bucks,at any Home Depot.Try to find it in sheet form(for use as a draw liner generally,but you need about three inches).Cut it out to fit on bottom of the clamp.This dampens out a resonant frequency that is given off,to the lp,by the clamp.DON'T BELIEVE ME?Try clicking the outer edge of the reflex clamp with your finger nail,as you would do with a wine glass!Hear that PING.You want to stop that sound from transferring into your vinyl.It makes a real improvement,and costs pennies.Try to get cork sheeting with one side of stick.This can be peeled to allow for good contact with clamp.The sticky side,ONLY,to contact clamp.The other side is your cork,which doesn't allow transfer of that nasty ping,to your discs.If you want to go crazy,for an extra ten cents,you can double up with two layers of cork,but it really isn't necessary.Remember,unless you are a klutz,you should not see any corking,and it should be cut to match the roundness of the clamp.Really cool,btw.

All these little tweaks,my pal and I have learned from careful attention to detail.Maybe someone else can add a good tweak.Anyway,the SOTAS are rediculously good tables,and are well priced!!


Thanks for the advice. The intermat material on top of my platter does not appear to be glued on very well and peels back easily.

Worth a try.
Not only are SOTA tables superb, but the responsiveness and service from the Sota people is impeccable. I am assuming this table will last forever, and looks great, too. (Cosmos with vacuum)
well I got it up and running, all smiles here! It is about 85% of what I would like, but more adjustments should dial it in greaT.
Great news Chadnliz. Keep it spinning.
Chad-- Great news! I'd love to hear your system sometime. By the time I got back from a little league coaches meeting it was too late to call back. Keep me posted on any upcoming ears and beers events.

Hey John,
Called you and left a message, hopin we can get out your way soon, Ears and Beers will be in early April.
This table set-up is simply amazing, I cant tell you how good it sounds, not dropping any names but some tables I have heard for around $3K cant touch this, I have not heard em' all but.....well I am a happy camper.
The coolest part is that I had to put a mid priced and dated Ortofon cart on the table and it still is blowing me away, now I am gonna be adding a Clear Audio Virtuoso Wood cartridge on it that my Ears and Beers buddy gave to me, I also had a Aura Beta S, but it has a bent Cantilever so I didnt even bother with it. Hopefully the Virtuoso Wood will do even more great things, but if it doesnt I will put back on the VERY pleasing Ortofon and maybe get me Grado XTL retipped, as it may mate really well with the Grado signature arm I have (not too many of those arms out there!)