Keith is the way to go, better cleaning and value. Go with the classic model which I have used. I also operated the Loricraft 4 and found it inferior to the Keith.
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Buconero, I have the Loricraft PRC-4 and I like it very much, though I have never used the Monks. I use four fluids in five steps and I don't think the Monks has enough bottles to hold that many different fluids. Nor do I like the idea of the automatic fluid applicator.
I am curious about which one does a better cleaning job though. Could you please elaborate? How does the Monks clean the LP better?
Does the excellent build quality of Keith Monks RCMs apply to the current production models (ie post 2008) as compared to those made while he was still alive (ie before 2005)?
I met Jonathan Monks 2 years ago at a Demo and he showed me the RCM. from my memory I think, yes, same parts inside, the new wood finish is much nicer, specially the red one (but that was a limited model).
Many thanks for the excellent information. It is facinating to me in this day and age to be discussing the fine points of current production high-end vinyl cleaning machines!
Apparently the pump used by Keith Monks is made for kidney dialysis machines. So, going from removing impurities in the blood stream to cleaning impurities in vinyl records - both essential analog functions.
I had some friends over a few weeks ago. We listened to a few lps that I had cleaned with mofi enzyme and pure rise. Then used one pass of Monks Discovery and then the Monks to vacuum it off.
It's like a getting a new cartridge...that much more info gets presented...
Tone Audio has review both the Loricraft and the Monks Ruby (the model i have).
Are you using the Monks discOvery fluid as one step, i.e. without a water rinse after the cleaning? The reviews seem to also describe a one step process. If this is the case, does it make more sense to get the Classic with it's one brush configuration as opposed to the two brush Omni? Or is a second brush useful for a water rinse step after cleaning, depending on the cleaning fluid used?
I am confused as to whether to use one step (clean only) or two steps (clean, then rinse). If the vacuum removes all the cleaning fluid efficiently in one pass, is a rinse step really necessary, or is it good practice to do so?
Honestly, the "Discovery" Fluid (yes one step no rinse) is so good, I don't really bother using the "break the mold" fluid (requires a few min and minor brushing after about a min). However I can hear the multi step fluid process...it is better like 15-20% for more than double the work ;-) (am i being lazy?)
Rinse is not necessary. The only trick is to make sure the edge is suctioned off perfectly (and fluid that dries on causes a crackling) I don't rinse ever using Monks Discovery...
I had one of the original Keith Mooks record cleaners, previously owned by a radio station. Much later I was in England and was to fly home on 9/12/01. Being stranded in England I went to an audio show and heard a demonstration of the Loricraft. I bought the basic unit there.
Like the Mooks, the Loricraft's design takes a long time to clean a record, especially if you use multiple cleaning fluids and pure water rinses. I don't really think there is much to choose from between them.
I have a VPI with a Delrin tube made by Lloyd Walker that replaces the stock tube. It is much closer to the record and totally vacuums of all fluids in just one rotation of the record. It actually improves on the cleaning of the Loricraft and I can clean one record in 5 minutes with all four cleaning steps, rather than 20 minutes with the Loricraft.
But the Audio Desk Vinyl Cleaner does everything while you are listening to music. It has had reliability problems which now seem cured. It is the equal of all these units in cleaning a record. I had to send it back but may soon again buy one. Obviously, I greatly resent time to clean my records, but realize it is essential.
I now have a Keith Monks Ruby RCM which I started using today. Wow, it really cleans that vinyl! I am not always getting enough suction according to the dial (-10 to -15), but records are completely dry after vacuuming. I am sure that it will take more than just cleaning 4 LPs to get the hang of it all...
The machine is built like a tank and is certainly quiet enough to use while playing music. A 3 step process (KM BreakTheMold pre-wash, KM discOvery 33 wash, pure water rinse) does not seem too onerous.