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i'm certainly not an expert, but i do own a rega 25, too. if u checked the audiogon forums on the best possible upgrade to rega turntables, i think the michell techno weight is always near the top. i have the expressimo counterweight myself. those who have gone from expressimo to michell generally agree that the michell is better. i think it runs in the $160 price range.
Amondrool is right with the technoweight. I owned a P25 for a few years and added just about every tweek that I could get for the table. Some helped and some went the other direction. But the one investment that I can say stood out as most obvious improvement was the Michel Technoweight. Not only sound but tracking. Second would be the subplatter with the ruby bearing. Then the Cardas rewire, acrylic platter, Michel VTA adjuster etc fall in line after that. I replaced the EZ riser with the Michel VTA as it was easier to use. The Ring Mat was on the table for about 1/2 an lp side and was in the box and back for credit the next day. The P25 is a great table that can be tweeked into a much more musical table with time and money.
Also I went thru a few carts and founf the Lyra Lydian to sound the best. No longer made but the Dorian and Argo rate better reviews.
Winoguy17, you may have been kidding, but I feel the need to stick up for Audiofeil. Dealers often get a bad rap, but there's nothing wrong with selling equipment you believe in. He also contributes a great deal to the forums. If you look through his answers, you'll see that he's a wealth of knowledge and willing to share what he knows. I just wanted to point these things out.
That said, I'd also like to know what tonearm he recommends.
08-31-08: RadkneeI've read a couple reviews of the P1. It sounds like it's a good budget table, but in my opinion, it doesn't have a solid foundation to sink money into. I honestly don't believe you'll hear any difference with an acrylic platter. Why don't you live with it until you save enough money to upgrade to something better like a P3 or a Technics 1200 or an older Thorens. Any of these would be a much better "budget" table.
Here's some food for thought: Tweaking my new Rega P1: How much is too much?
A P5 would have a better chance of giving it a run for its money but a P25? doubt it. Jeff Dorgay of Tone Audio did a comparison with his P25 and his P9, same cartridge on both tables and said that while the upgraded P25 was an overachiever, it didn't outperform his P9. He did say it wasn't a blowout win for the P9.
The newer 24V motor and optional power supply are noticable upgrades over the older P3,P25 models so the gap would probably be bridged considerably. Remember that the P9 has a much more sophisticated power supply and the RB1000 is a better tonearm than the RB700.
Disclaimer: I manufacture Rega turntable upgrades.
I will chime in on this... I have owned a P25 for approx 3 yrs.
The first upgrade I did was change the c/w to an Express Machining "Heavyweight". This improved bass in both weight and reducing a slight muddiness. Also, improved tracking ability on the carts I used it with.
Within the last 3-4 months I have installed the three Groovetracer offerings- Counterweight, Subplatter and Acryllic Platter.
All I can say is WOW! These "upgrades"improved EVERYTHING to my ears.
The Rega strengths of Timing, musicality, and pacing are all still there but now the bass is lower and tighter, the highs are extended even further and NO "hotness" or gratiness, just smooth extension. Soundstage depth is a good 3' to 4' perceived deeper.
The midrange is meatier than before the "upgrades" and more palpable, especially on female vocals- I am falling in love with Joni Mitchell....again.
I paid $600 for the P25, and about $500 for the Groovetracer products. I am currently using a Rega Exact cart, I paid $250 for and a Rega Fono I bought for $200. All told for less than $1600, I could not be happier, nor do I believe I could do better for the money.
The Groovetracer products are first rate in design and build and are truly a snap to install. Doing business with Groovetracer was a hassle-free, pleasure, and I would urge you to spring for the three "upgrades" as your budget allows.
If you can do all three at once, I would do it that way, but if not, in this order.... Counterweight, then Acryllic platter, then subplatter.
I would not trade my table for an LP12 or a Scout....they are both good tables, I just prefer the P25/Groovetracer.
I will probably buy another, more expensive table someday, but I will keep the P25/Groovetracer.
If your on the fence.....jump, you'll be glad you did.
I would like to chime in here for the record. My experience has been similar to others as far as replacing the subplatter but I have to let everyone know that I found the Iron Audio Acrylic Platter apalling. Sure it tamed the highs a little and took a little of the edge off of bright recordings but overall I lost dimensionality and detail. Not hurt your ears detail, the detail that makes a flute sound like it's solid and floating in space instead of the sound of a flute in 2 dimensions. The detail that makes a soundstage deep and 3 dimensional. The acrylic platter just lost all of that. I just got done calling musicdirect and getting a return authorization. The acrylic is going back...
The glass platter with the Funk Firm Achromat is the best I've yet heard. Used the paper/cork mat thing for a long while but the Achromat was a big upgrade.
I was wondering about the acrylic platter upgrade for a long time. Now I don't have to wonder anymore.
My other upgrades:
Pete Riggle VTAF
Silicon Nitride ball bearing
Mapleshade heavyfeet replaced the stock Rega feet
Project Speedbox SE
Each of these made a major improvement.