step up transformer, tonearm and cartridge combos?

Hello all, I'm very new to audiogon and the audiophile world. I decided to jump straight in, and purchased a Technics sp10 ii that will arrive in a couple weeks. I want to play 78s as well as 33s, and would prefer to simply change out cartridges/shells, relatively simply. I have an sme arm board. Everything I've read points to rega or sme tonearms for unquestionable results. Usually a Denon, ortofon or Audioteca cartridge to top it off. Should I simply double up for each playing speed?

Next, the sp10 is 240v and I'm in California. Are there particular transformers I should go with or stay away from?

I'm getting a bit burned out, and I just want to get to spinning. I would say my budget is in the 1500 range for everything. All help is very much appreciated!
You may be getting burned out, but you're going to have to stick with it for a
little bit :^) The TT just gets things spinning - the cartridge/tonearm
combination is what pulls the info out of the groove, and the phono
pre/equalizer is what gets the low-level signal from the phono cable to the
pre or amp (depending on how your phono pre-amp is set up).

For $1500, you can 'save' some money (or spend more and get a bit better
quality in the other things) by avoiding the step-up transformer and going
with an MM cart. What phono stage are you expecting to use?

If you are set on an MC cart, inexpensive ways to get that done are a set
of Cinemag transformers (see's Vinyl Asylum for more info
on these) or a Piccolo headamp (again see VA for commentary).

If you have an SME armboard, do you know for which effective length of SME?
If you do not know, you can measure the distance from the spindle to the
mounting hole and someone here (or on the VA) can help you identify which
model arm would work with your armboard.

Assuming for a moment that it is a 9" tonearm model which will fit, I would
expect that a relatively 'low-cost' excellent-sounding MC-cart combination
in SME-land would be something like a used SME 3009 Series II with a Denon
103R (or plain 103). To use the Denon 103R, to my knowledge, you would
have to avoid the 3009 II "Improved" and the Series III (which were
lighter weight arms, requiring higher-compliance carts). That will do for
stereo 33s and 45s. For mono records, for relatively low-cost mono carts, I
have heard the Denon 102 and the Audio Technica AT33 SP and they both are
acceptable - certainly for the price.

For MM carts, and for carts/arms for 78s, someone else will have to help you.
I have no experience there in recent memory.

Despite their ubiquity, I have never heard a Rega arm, nor a Rega-style arm
made by someone else (such as Origin Live). Used Rega and Rega-like arms
abound so one can be picked up for not huge outlay.
Thanks T bone! I will get the specs for the arm length. I want to run through a Scott 340 as a preamp and phono stage, and I have not decided on using an mm or mc. Any concerns about noise using a transformer, converting my 120 to 240 for the TT?
Braindeadly, I have no experience with a Scott 340 (assuming it's a 340B?) nor with using a transformer for that large a voltage jump.

If you have no preconceptions on MM or MC, I would try to find an MM cart which matches the older SME arms (first find out which arm will fit) as the Scott apparently has a phono stage as it will save you a bit on the front side of things.
Thanks again, T Bone. The armboard is set at 215mm, so I believe I'm looking at a 9" tonearm. I am going to find out more on the Scott, and go from there. Your suggestions are quite helpful. I'll post more as I learn more and hopefully get feedback.