Ready To Upgrade Turntable, please advise...

Have Cj140, cj16ls2, with a cj15s2 phono going to an old Beogram Tx2/MMc2 (I bought in 1987), speakers are kef104/2 (need to upgrade them next) I'm looking at VPI ScoutMaster versus VPI Superscoutmaster with JPW sig 9 arm with Shelter 501 or 901. I'm getting caught up in Scoutmaster versus Superscout master upgrade and shelter 501 vs 901 upgrade..I've never heard VPI before only going on what I read and what I know I like for sound (I bought all my CJ stuff that way and love it..) Are the higher end tt and cartridges I mention worth it in my setup? What alternatives are there? I see much good comment on Linn LP12 but I am afraid it would be too hard to set up/maintain..what I'm trying to get to is to an optimized (95 %) TT/Cartridge setup that matches my CJ equipment level..thanks for your comments and insight...Lew
Lewdis, you will not regret the Scoutmaster JMW9 Signature and Shelter 501 combination. It will very well complement the rest of your system. I recommend you start here rather than going to the Super Scoutmaster or the 901. For the additional cost, you would get far greater benefit from adding a motor controller (either the VPI SDS or, better, the Walker Audio).
I'm very pleased with the Nottingham AceSpace/Space deck combo.I mated it with the 501 through the Dynavector P-75.My system is also tube based,the combination may surprise you.
Would definetly be looking to buy the tt system used and would be open to looking for a used Aries as well. If you are set on buying new I like Rushton's advice.
I love CJ and my Cj stuff was more humble than yours but very enjoyable and musical. I have a supratek preamp now but still own an 11a amp.

I had a Thorens both 125 and 126 for about oh 30 years or so and never got out of vinyl period. I traded an SACD player for a SOTA sapphire and it was a significant upgrage to my tired old ears. I would just suggest you try to listen to a Cosmos if you have a chance. There is a comparison on Stereophile Archives about a reviewer that had a VPI TNT and SOTA Cosmos in his system and he used the same tonearm and cartridge in both to evaluate if you are interested in direct comparison.

I have nothing but respect for VPI and certainly wouldn't try to dissaude you, but, I would definitely try to compare and contrast with a SOTA Cosmos if you have a chance at your level.

I am in the same situation in Alaska. There is no opportunity to compare turntables here in the state so you HAVE to rely on past experience, user impressions, and reviews. I couldn't help myself and bought a used COSMOS recently. I based that decision on my very favorable and still enjoyable time in the saddle with the sapphire, and I definitely have the vinyl collection to test it. As for the cartridge, that would be an easy nod for the Shelter unheard but I am a big fidelity research fan and use a Van Den Hul Fidelity research FR1MK 3 rebuild and am trying to get a FR 201 rebuilt currently. So, if the maker was a former employee at Fidelity Research, hell, for me it an easy decision.

In any event, enough rambling, have Fun and I am sure you will love it with your front end and down range components. Should be very enjoyable system.

Have Fun!
Oh, for your consideration.

Mike Fremer reviewed the Shelter line in one of his analog corner in Stereophile.

Also, jerry at has reviewed the Shelter line and that is posted at his website.

If you don't have that Stereophile issue or it isn't archived at the site, contact me and I'll shoot it to you if you would like it.

Have Fun.