Turntable Upgrade Help

I have a question about listening to records on my system.  I'm pretty happy with what I have, but I'm wondering if I'm missing something. I have a Cambridge Audio Azur 651R AV Receiver. I have a pair of Quad 23L speakers. My phonostage is a vintage Yamaha C-4 that has been cleaned and recapped. My turntable is an MMF-5 with a Goldring 1042 cartridge with less than 50 hours on it. My big question is about the turntable. Like I said, I like the way that everything sounds, but because this was my first foray into higher quality stereo equipment, I don't have anything with which to compare it. If I upgraded to a Marantz TT15 or something in the 1500 dollar range, would I hear drastic improvements? I look for bargains on some of the dealer markets to get higher end equipment that has been discounted into this price range. As an example, I was just a little late pulling the trigger on a Gold Note Valore 425 SE, which retails around 2000 USD. Would that have made a big difference in sound compared to my MMF? Is there something else in my system that might be a weaker link. I just don't know because I haven't heard anything else.


If you like the overall sound of the MMF-5 stepping up to the MMF-7.3 is a nice upgrade. It is a highly regarded TT. It is a Stereophile magazine class B rated component and has been on that list for a few years. It is my current TT and sounds fantastic! I'm running an Ortofon 2M Black cart as well as some other mods to it.
It will be hard to improve on it much without spending quite a bit more.
@boneius - Welcome to AudiogoN forums!

So, you're asking about your vinyl rig and looking for potential upgrades. And the MMF-7.3 suggested by @sonicjoy   is certainly a viable option. However, you also asked:
Is there something else in my system that might be a weaker link.

Looking at your setup, I would think the Cambridge Audio Azur 651R AV Receiver might be the weakest link. Admittedly, I have not heard that particular model, so I'm simply basing this opinion on my experience with AV receivers in general. AV/HT receivers have a lot of features built-in. Many of these features are geared toward video functionality and HT codecs, not music sound quality. So my question would be this: Do you need all of that functionality that an AV/HT receiver provides, features such as 7 channels of amplification, video switching, HDMI inputs, digital format decoding, am/fm stereo tuner, etc.? If not, you might get a bigger boost in sound quality by upgrading the AV receiver to a quality Integrated amplifier. You will lose the tuner, all of the video switching , extra channels of amplification and HT digital inputs. However, you would likely get better 2-channel sound quality.

Sorry if I went off subject a bit. But I think it might be a better first upgrade. That is, if you don't need the AV/HT functionality that is built into your current receiver. If you do need/want the HT funtionality, proceed with the TT upgrade.

Thanks @sonicjoy  and @reubent  for your quick replies. I do like the Music Hall. I might look into the 7.3.  @reubent , I do need the 651 for my video needs.  All of the reviews and specs that I've read say that it has great "guts" for reproducing 2-channel analog, and I've really enjoyed the sound so far, but my only comparison is a HK AVR receiver that I had before it, and this blows the doors off of that.  I've read enough on her and elsewhere of people saying that a dedicated integrated amp is the way to go.  I've thought about how I can do that. It is a possibility.
I'm pretty happy with what I have, but I'm wondering if I'm missing something. I have a Cambridge Audio Azur 651R AV Receiver.

I stopped quoting right there because we found your problem. There are only a few things in all of audio that might be worse than a receiver. Patch cords and power cords shipped free in the box are two of them. But only if we're talking receivers. You indicated AV receiver. There is nothing in all of audio worse than an AV receiver. So no point quoting further.

So yes, reubent is right. Hedging a little probably trying to be nice but what's the point, AV receivers are garbage, might as well just come out and say it. Within the first minute you compare one to a similarly priced integrated you are gonna know it anyway. Might as well just save time and be straight about it now.

So go get your new stereo integrated. Then, about those power cords.....

To your original question, yes it's a worthwhile upgrade. I've owned the MMF 5.1 and have the MMF 7.1. Better plinth, better tonear, better feet, better motor design... all those things improve sound quality. 

To pile on to what others have mentioned, consider a two channel integrated with home theater bypass as part of your upgrade path. 

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Happy Listening!