Linn Basik LVX to ?? for XX2 MkII

I just acquired a Dynavector XX2 to replace a 20XL. What an incredible upgrade! I loved the 20XL and don't know why I decided to upgrade, but I did and won't look back! The XX2 was like going from CD on an old Philips to SACD on an OPPO 95. Wow!

My current front-end consists of a Systemdek IIX with a 20mm acrylic platter, Linn Basik LVX tonearm and a Dynavector P-75 jumpered in "special" mode.

I'm only wondering if I would experience any substantial improvement by upgrading the arm. I'm playing with picking up a second hand Linn Ittok, which is basically a drop in replacement for the Basik, which would let me keep my armboard intact. I am also intrigued by the VPI JMW-9t, which would require a new armboard, or other arms (which would also require a new armboard).

I don't have the funds to upgrade the whole deck, or I'd probably go with a Scout 2 or something similar. I've got about $750 to get a used arm on the current deck.

Would it be a substantial upgrade to something, or should I just wait a few years until I have the funds to get a new table/arm?
Hi, having had for several years, an XX2MKII, first on a Scout Signature, and now on a restored Garrard 401 and Dynavector 501 tonearm, and also having had a Dynavector P-75, I suspect you'll get more bang for your buck by upgrading your phono stage. I sold my Simaudio Moon LP 5.3 with outboard power supply to a fellow that has a Scout and a P-75 phono stage. He was blown away with the difference in what he hears now, as opposed to with the P-75.

That may be more than you can afford, but there are many good phono pres that can be had for $750, or thereabouts.
If you're using a MC you'll need to get the Ittok LV II since its tube is big around enough to handle MC. I used a Dynavector 10x5 (piece of crap cantilever as far as I'm concerned) and it sounded good. I have a Linn 6.5Mv Adikt MM hooked up to a Cary SLP 98P like the DV was, and like it even better. I had the LVX and the K-9 K18II and Nagaoaka M11 all sounded good with it. There is more difference between the LVX and Ittok LVII than between the Ittok LVII and a Linn Ekos, so the best bang for the buck would be to get the Ittok. Best of luck.
All good advice. I think after I sell the Basik, the 20XL and the P-75, I'll have enough to add to my budget and do both the Ittok and a phono pre. I actually bought a PS Audio GCPH today. I'll probably eventually have it modded by Underwood. Still looking for a good deal on an Ittok.

Thanks for the advice!
Marktrav, let me know if you need a good Ittok LVII
And please let us know how the P75 stacks up against your new GCPH.

I have heard that the P75 in PE mode with a low impedance cart like the 20X2L or XX-2 punches well above its weight class.
I think you will find the P75 is better. I would not put a $750 arm on the Systemdek ; I was a dealer for them years ago. Ittoks often appear on used LP 12s at reasonable prices; or something like a Scoutmaster can be found at a reasonable price. I would wait until I could jump several steps at once; it is cheaper that way. You can get a Rega 1000 in OEM version new for $1200; it is competitive not with the Ittok but the Ekos. I have had a couple of Ittoks years ago; I think the Jelco 750 is as good an arm; you can get one new for $500 + arm cable. I think Jelco made the Ittok for Linn; it was certainly made in Japan.
Thanks again for all the advice. And thanks @Polk432 for the Ittok sale. It arrived in excellent condition!

@Stanwal, you are correct in stating that the stock Systemdek would not be a good match for the Ittok. However, I've modified mine extensively and would probably have to spend a considerable amount to get better. I've got a new motor (same as Linn and Rega uses), rebuilt bearing using a Harley Davidson bottom-end bearing (very hard and smooth) and a decent amount of Dynamat. I've also got the 20mm ISOTeknik acrylic platter, not the 10mm glass platter.

So, I was skeptical about the arm making THAT much difference. If I had replace the arm first, then the cart, I would be inclined to say that the cart was the reason for the better sound. However, in this case, I've had a few weeks with the XX2 in the Basik before I upgraded to the Ittok. The XX2/Basik was pretty good. The XX2/Ittok is stunning and takes the XX2 to a whole new level that I didn't think would have been possible.

It's like going from an art gallery that has a lot of art stacked up and on the white walls with lots of bright light verses an art gallery that uses black walls and spot lighting to emphasize specific paintings. The art itself is the same, but the clarity and emotional connection you make with the gallery that emphasizes quality over quantity is much deeper.

I was frequently startled at drums and high-hat on recordings that I've had for years and years. I didn't realize they were so lifelike.

Some examples: "Angry Eyes" on the first Loggins & Messina LP became like listening to the master tape. The bass was solid as a rock, you could hear the material that made up the bass drum heads. Spot imaging on the tambourines, flutes, etc. All on a "black" background in a way I've never heard before. And this is original issue vinyl.

Everything I've got on Deutsche Grammaphone sounds even more lifelike and remarkable. Especially Russo's Street Music.

On the original issue of Dire Straights, "6-blade knife", same thing. However, at the end of the track, I was really bummed that I still had alot of noise in the phono preamp (P-75). Wait, I didn't listen long enough before I made that judgement call... the master tape volume was decreased and there was pitch black until the volume was turned up again for the lead into "Southbound again". Wow! Didn't know that was there!

For the P-75 vs. PS Audio, I might try it again, but so far I think the synergy between the XX2 and the P-75 gives it an edge. There are some interesting mid-range qualities that the PS Audio have, but it seems the noise floor is higher. If anything, I might try to upgrade the P-75 to a MkII version.

Otherwise, I'm a happy camper.