Next step in TT - where to go from a VPI Traveler?


Hi everyone,

I am currently very happy with my system (a rare situation :)) -- Van Alstine Separates (FET Valve CF/FET Valve 600R), Manley Chinook Phono Stage, KEF LS50, and VPI Traveler w/Clearaudio Maestro V2 cart).  However, I know there is lot more performance to be had above the modest VPI Traveler.  So, I have a couple of questions:

1.  What can I expect to hear in terms of performance from a better turntable, assuming that the cartridge and the rest of the system are the same?   

2.  What would be some examples of a TT that will be more than just a slight improvement?  I'd like to get something that will be a good foundation for years to come, but I don't have enough experience with TTs to know which tables I should be exploring.  I'm considering something like a VPI Prime since I've had a good experience with VPI, and the Prime can be upgraded with an outer ring clamp, speed control, etc.  

Thanks to anyone who can provide some guidance.  

All the best, Scott    
smrex13
TW Raven GT would be much better than VPI it does cost more but it would be your last TT.Look on Audiogon sometimes you see used TW tables.Enjoy!
Sounds like you are headed in the right direction with the Prime and since you own VPI now you have an idea of their ease of setup. I own a Prime, it was the cheapest way to get the 10inch 3D arm and have to say I am staying put with the Prime/SDS/perifial ring. Go ahead and purchase your Mint Best Protractor for setting the arm and enjoy your vinyl.

You could also look at a used SME 10. They come up for sale occasionally
Any thought of looking out side the box and building up or buying a Garrard 301/401 they are very musical and have fantastic drive. with so many upgrade options available they could keep you happy for years to come.
I currently run a classic 1 with a 10" memorial. I can say imo almost any table in the price range is going to show a noticable improvement all the way around a traveler, the prime is the bang for the buck table at vpi currently imo
I am considering a prime also and on that list is also the tw raven gt( used if i could find one they are pricey in comparison) and also the trans fi table from vic .
All three are very different beast. and the latter is a finiky tt but from what i hear sounds way out of its price range .Tough to hear the gt or the trans anywhere near me.I personnally would spend you max on the tt tonearm set up and upgrade a cart.later.
good luck any will outperform the traveler if set up properly
great idea to look at vpi prime or one of the classic models. you may find a 3 at your price point on the used market. you have a good cart and worth keeping. i am running a clearaudio table which are very nice. they have a magnetic bearing and would mate very well with your cart.
Check out SOTA ! 

http://www.sotaturntables.com/newprod.htm
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