Nottingham Spacedeck vs Rega Planar 8 vs Technics SL1200G


Hey Everyone,

An analogue newbie needs your advice.

Firstly I am not looking for any TT recommendations other than these 3.

My system is Devore O96, and the amplification would be either Lyngdorf 3400/Coincident Frankenstein combo or a Shindo pre/amp combo (forthcoming). The phono stage is TBD.

The sound I like is rich, full-bodied, with a good bass (I love percussion, and the double-bass instrument and  Mingus is my fav jazz artist). I am very sensitive to even a hint of brightness. I don't care about the typical audiophile presentation -- gobs of detail and soundstage but no soul.

My music of choice is jazz, vocals and small-scale instrumentals. No rock, no pop, no western classical.

Would love your thoughts on these 3 choices.

Since I am a newbie, easy setup is big win, which might tilt me towards the Rega or Technics, but with Nottingham I have a great dealer support that I would completely miss out on if I went with Technics (no Technics dealer in a 5000 mile radius).

I used to own a Rega RP6, so am familiar with Rega sound, and like it. But my RP6 was bested by my DAC (AMR DP-777) so sold it a few years ago. So I want a TT that will compete with any sub-10000$ DAC.

Looking forward to your thoughts that will help me scratch my analog itch.


essrand
Essrand:

I own the AMR DP 777se and owned a SL1200 GAE for two wonderful years. I understand your point, a DP 777/ DP 777 se can make lesser analog rigs a waste of time. I had them both maxed out and ran the following cartridges on the GAE, London Ref, Audio Technica ART 1000, Denon 103r, Ana Mighty Sound modified Denon 103r (103.3) and a Kiseki Purple Heart (a friend loaned me the Kiseki, not a fan of this one). I own or owned and used the Luxman EQ 500, SPL Phonos and iPhono 2 with the GAE. 

It is a superior sounding table once the bearing is fully run-in. I would say that my AMR with an optimized music server (HQPlayer), linear power supply and more optimization’s than I care to mention and the GAE were on par with each other. They both made music and often times it would come down to the mastering job on a particular record. For instance, Sade seems to have been mastered to vinyl far better than CD, while the 45 of “Jacintha Is Her Name” seems to have been treated very very well in the vinyl realm as well as the CD (of course the 15ips tape is better than both).

I only sold my GAE because I wanted to play with an idler and I do not need three tables. I thought it would be cool to have the idler next to my SP10 MK3. Had a Commonwealth 12D/3 which is a great table, but I chose a Garrard 401.

My buddies have some expensive tables and I’ve not heard any of their tables flat out beat the GAE. I thought the Dohmann Helix ($40k) and the GAE sounded very similar. In fact you can find earlier posts I’ve made where I stated that the Dohmann was the one belt table I’ve heard that I really liked and could happily own.

You cant lose with a SL 1200 G.

If there is one thing that I personally believe is a must change to bring out the best of the Technics it is the deletion of that horrid platter-mat they have been stuffing in the box with their tables since the 70’s. That mat was horrid with my SP10 MK3 and it was horrid with my GAE. I ended up using a delrin (relatively sure it’s delrin) mat by Artisan Fidelity. The stock mat sounds muddy and sucks the life out of the music, it’s terrible. I did try one of my friends custom copper mats (he owns a GAE) that he is developing specifically for the G/GAE and it did indeed sound excellent. I tried my Artisan Fidelity custom copper mat that was made for my SP 10 MK3 on the GAE, did NOT like that at all. I think it was too heavy, again, that mat was a one-off for my MK3.

Whatever you decide, I hope you enjoy. It’s a lot of fun. I listen to a great deal of music and really enjoy my analog and digital.
audiofun, 

what didnt you like about the purple heart? 
Joegator81:

I don’t really have anything against the Kiseki, I just found it a little to soft and warm for my taste. I can definitely see how this cartridge can work in some systems. I think it works well with my buddies rig because his table, the Grand Prix Monaco, in my opinion can be a bit lean sounding and harmonically reticent, he agrees with my assessment. The Kiseki brings a bit more decay to instruments on his table. It is a more refined sound than a stock Denon 103 but whereas I find a 103/103r cartridge to get the feet moving, the Kiseki is a bit more languid. I much prefer my modified 103r.

Of course this is a case (as is all of these opinions) of courses for horses.
Audiofun, 

thanks for the insight. I think the more opinions the better. Much appreciated. 

Joe