Turntable Hiss

I just got a turntable off ebay. I love the sound of it. I can not believe more people don't listen to records.
Here is the question:
I have to turn the volume about 25% higher when I am listening to a record (versus listening to CDs or radio.) At the same time, I get a hissing noise. I still prefer to listen to the LP but is there a way to decrease the hissing noise?
My equipment:

Technics SL-QD33 turntable (w/ audio-technica 8008 cartridge)
Cambridge Audio 540-P Phono-preamp
Cambridge Audio 840A Integrated Amp
Audio Physic Yara Evolution Speakers

The cables between the amps and the turntable are cheap kind. I do connect the ground wire of the turntable to the screw on the phono preamp.

Many thanks
Hi Katie,

It's possible that better cables will help somewhat, but my guess is that the main reason for the hiss you are hearing is the 540P phono stage, and unfortunately I suspect that the only way to substantially reduce the hiss is to substitute a better (and more expensive) phono stage.

What primarily determines the hiss level is the relation between cartridge output voltage and the levels of electrical noise that are generated in the phono stage's input circuits (since any noise generated there is amplified by everything that follows). Your cartridge is rated as having a 5mv output under standard test conditions, which is quite high, while the phono stage gain (which tends to loosely correlate with noise performance) is not particularly high at 39db. And a phono stage costing around $100 figures to have marginal noise performance.

Having to set the volume higher for phono than for other sources is typical and to be expected, though, because cd and tuner outputs are usually higher than outputs of phono stage/cartridge combinations. With a better phono stage, though, you would get less hiss at that higher volume control setting.

Perhaps someone else having specific experience with the 540P will comment further.

-- Al

. . . second what Al said.

but, how much hiss do you actually have? Can you hear it from your listening position? . . . from 5 ft away from the speakers? . . . ear next to the speakers?

The 25% volume level difference is pretty common in my experience. It's possible to find phone stages with more gain but I've found the extra gain doesn't necessarily make it sound better. I've learned to tolerate the volume diff, and some level of higher noise floor after realizing I was chasing my tail (and had run out of money). What matters is does the vinyl rig best the CD? Mine does by a wide margin even with the volume issue and a little noise (which is undetectable from my listening position.
Third what Al said. The phono stage is probably the most overlooked component in the vinyl chain. Getting it really right is night and day from not doing so.
It makes more sense to find a cartridge to match the preamp.
It makes more sense to find a cartridge to match the preamp.
Ron -- Note that she already has a 5mv cartridge. No moving magnet or moving iron cartridge, to my knowledge, is going to provide a great deal more output than that. I believe there are some cartridges that approach 7mv, but that is less than 3db greater.

So if the root cause of the problem, as I suspect, is the level of noise generated by the phono stage, changing cartridges will not improve signal-to-noise ratio, and therefore will not help significantly.

-- Al