So many web resources for this if you explore a bit including many Youtube videos.
This is a decent starting website to send you in as many directions as you may desire:
You’re already on the best site ever to read and learn almost everything about it. But if you would like to save your time just buy brand new Technics SL1200G or 50% cheaper GR
, ask here for a cartridge and phono stage then. This new Technics is probably the best super high quality japanese Direct Drive for a newby (can be easily sell anytime later or you can keep it for decades).
I would find a Hi Fi store near you and find a sales person familiar with turntables. Have him show you what it is about then he can answer your questions in real time. He will try to sell you what is in the store. If he has several brands that may not be a bad thing because if you have problems you will have someone to lean on. Once you understand the basics then you can learn the fine details and apply them to your table. Down the road if you want a better table you will have a much better understanding of what you are looking for. Experience is always the best teacher.
I will seriously consider the Tetchnics SL1200G as it reminds me of my youth, listening to now "classic" rock. What are the points in requiring a phono stage or not? I will be using a McIntosh MX135 as a pre-amp for my system. Would the pre-amp or type of cartridge be some of the determining factors?
Good choice @ymc226 , especially the "G" model.
Your Mac has an MM phono input, so this is a good starting point, you can use some decent MM/MI cartridge and you don’t need an external phono stage, indeed. You can even add SUT (Step Up Trans) if you’re willing to use an LOMC cartridge with the same Mac Phono input. So you’re fine.
We’re looking for a better sound and this is the reason to try different phono stages or different cartridges when you're bored.
With Technics SL1200G you don’t have to worry about tonearms and stuff, the alignment of the cartridge in the headshell is so easy (there is an overhang gauge from technics).
We have many fans of Technics 1200G here, you will find so many comments, everybody happy.
Yes, totally in agreement with the comments expressed by chakster.
I wish someone had offered me similar advice decades ago. They probably did but my head was firmly stuck in the (totally misleading) advice offered by the UK magazines of the day.
You can spend an age getting to grips with turntable tech, ... or just go and buy the best Technics deck you can afford.
I am feeling much more comfortable starting my TT experience with the Technics SL1200G and see that there is a very lightly used one for sale on the forum. Getting close to purchasing it. If I do, I will ask for advice on an initial "starter" cartridge. Thanks again for all of the advice given. I believe it has saved me time and money.
The best way to save money is to spend time. So you are off to a good start. Go and listen to as many rigs as you can. Getting good LP playback everything matters. So pay attention to every detail in the chain of everything you try- table, arm, cartridge, what the table is sitting on, phono stage, all the wire, and of course also the system its being played on.
Best is if you can find a place that will let you play the same record on the same system with different turntables. Good luck. But try.
Another thing, relax. Every turntable out there is gonna do very naturally what every CD ever made never has been able to do: make music. I'm not kidding. I dug out my old Technics SL-1700 (with an old Stanton 681EEE with a bent cantilever) and my wife and I both preferred it to CD. Analog also tends to retain its value a lot better than digital. That same old Technics SL1700 from 1976 is worth more today than it sold for new. Digital? Disposable. Deservedly so.
So relax. Go and listen. Enjoy your music.
I know I may have rushed it, but reading about all the improved musicality of TT, I just bought on Audiogon, a like new Technics SL 1200G so it will work on my McIntosh MX 135 pre-amp which I understand has a MM phono stage.
It is being delivered next week so I would like recommendations on a MM "starter" or more intermediate cartridge that would pair well with my new to me TT. I listen to classic rock mostly with some classical as well.
Congratulations! There is a huge difference as everyone says here with Digital sources. You've skipped in my opinion the starter steps in what you've bought. I am very inexperienced compared with all the guys here so I hope I'm not wrong here but as regards cartridge, I believe it's an even bigger influence on your sound. MC vs MM ? MM is perceived as lower end because the theory says that a coil is lighter than a magnet so can respond quicker to the bumps and troughs in your groove. High Output Moving Coil cartridges can also be used into MM inputs although models are more limited. Dynavector and Sumiko are examples amongst many. You've a few days to read all the reviews. Needledoctor is great source but read the descriptions because High Output MC cartridges are on a page labelled Low Output! However, like all things its not black and white, MM can also be better than MC.
Nice! Welcome to the Technics club.
If you want something special look for vintage MM like the Audio-Technica AT-ML150
(Beryllium cantilever, MicroLine
diamond) or Victor X-1IIe
and Elliptical tip). Both are excellent cartridges for reasonable price, more expensive than some modern Nagaoka, Grado and usual suspects, but with obvious advantages over them all (different cantilevers and diamonds). On exotic side you can look at the ADC TRX-2
cantilever, Vital II diamond). Anyway, depends on your budget, some Stanton/Pickering top models are also superb, and don’t gorget the Grace top models.
Thank you all for the advice. I ordered an AT MM cartridge from Crutchfield which is also coming next week. Moving from NJ to CA so everything is being shipped to LA. I don’t even have a LP so will need to buy a record this weekend.