MMF-5 vs. VPI HW-19 Jr - old school or new age?

I own an MMF-5 turntable, which I enjoy and generally agree is an excellent value. I have the opportunity to purchase a very lightly used VPI HW-19 Jr., but purchase must be made un-heard. And, unfortunately, sale of the MMF-5 would fund the VPI table purchase, so no direct comparison is possible. The VPI comes without an arm, but with the plinth drilled for a Sumiko MMT arm, which I happen to have in mint condition. Cartridge will be a Benz micro silver, which I like a lot. Should I pull the trigger and dump the Music Hall for the VPI or stick with what I've got? (swap would be about even in terms of money, so not a factor).

My system consists of Sonic Frontiers SFL-1 pre, Myryad MA-120 amp, and AAD 2001 monitors. Cables are mid-grade XLO. I listen primarily to jazz and tend to think if a system can get Miles Davis' horn right, most else will probably be right as well.

I previously owned both tables though not at the same time. The VPI 19jr is better made (ie more solid), and flexible. You'll have a better arm. It is a better sounding table than the MMF-5, but not much better sounding IMO. The plus for the MMF-5 is it's an easy to set up, leave it alone and just play music, vs other tables I've had which require more tweaking. The VPI isn't too bad set up wise compared to suspended tables, but is more effort than the MMF. But that's the cost of the flexibility to choose your arm, etc.

If the $'s are the same it may be worth the move. I replaced my VPI with a Heybrook TT2, which I like much better - YMMV.
old school or new age? It's just a lateral move...
It may be a lateral move right now, but you have the potential to upgrade the VPI as time and funds allow. It COULD be a much better table down the road.

However, if I were in your shoes I would probably wait, save some additional cash, and get a better table/arm down the road. Keep your eyes open; there are good deals coming up all the time on all sorts of things. And don't forget the phono stage also - big improvements can be had by upgrading that as well.

Strictly based on dollars, the MM-5 is a much better value. I agree with Bob however; save some money and make a serious upgrade if you are really into analog. The 19jr is a marginal step up for you.
PTMconsulting's point about upgrading the "Jr." model may prove more difficult that previously, because VPI no longer manufactures the HW-19 turntable. Thus, you'll have to rely on buying the upgrades (or a complete Mark 3 or Mark 4 version) in "used" condition from other audiophiles.

I have owned a VPI HW-19 since 1987, when I bought the Mark 2 version. The table has been continuously upgraded in the years since, to include the stand-alone motor assembly. I have compared its' performance directly to the newer VPI Scoutmaster, and I think my HW-19 Mk4 (with modifications) performs at least as well. Therefore, my recommendation is -- providing you have the budget -- is to try to find the Mark 3 or Mark 4 version of the HW-19 and skip the "Jr." version.
Darn...I should have known the solution most often encouraged on Audiogon would be to opt for a much more expensive solution! Perhaps I should have made it clear that either turntable (in its existing state) will be my turntable for many a year, and I don't anticipate putting more bucks into my vinyl habit.

That being said, I do appreciate your well-intentioned and no doubt well-informed advice. In keeping with it, I think I'll hold on to the Music Hall...and put more mental energy into figuring out how I'm going to store my growing lp collection.

Thanks again, Ben
VPI,great upgrade path.