Upgrading Music Hall 2.2 tone arm.

Years ago I had a Linn Basik with a Sumiko Blue point. I loved the sound of that deck. I took a break from my audiophile obsession and got back into it about 3 years ago. I now have a Music Hall 2.2 and I really don't like the sound. I'm thinking of upgrading the arm to a Linn Basik arm or maybe a Rega RB250 or RB300. Does this make sense? Would it improve the sound to close to the Linn or sould I continue to hold out to find a Linn that I can afford right now.

IMHO, Sell it.
Put the $ towards a better TT whether it be an MH or other brand. You will be happier in the end, and probably save yourself cash over spending on multiple upgrades while never being reasonably satisfied with the results.
Try a Herbie's mat. It added amazing fullness to the sound of my Music Hall MMF-5. Horrible on my Linn, so that only goes to show... something or other.
Don't waste your time or money. Try another table.
While the mmf-2 has evolved into a relatively decent turntable for the money, I wouldn't put more money into it. I doubt it could ever sound like a Linn.

The Herbie's mat is a good recommendation; it made a huge difference with my mmf-2.1 (and its resonant metal platter.) The stock Goldring/Music Hall cartridge (still the Tracker?) isn't bad but upgrading the cartridge also made big improvements.

Save your money and then buy up a few more notches.

I would upgrade to the MMF 5.1. Or try Rega P3-24 if that fits your bill.
You can obtain a substantial increase in performance by adding the Project Speed Box II (as the MMF 2.2 is manufactured in the Project factory and is actually a step between the Debut III and the Xpression III) and the Project acrylic platter upgrade.Also change the cartridge to one that suits your taste. You will be spending about $240 plus the cartridge of your choice. I have done all of the above to mine plus I added a Denon DL160 cartridge. I doubt you can find a better value by trading in, selling or changing the arm. Is it better than a Linn Basic ? my opinion is yes especially so if the Basik is the pre Akito version. Oh, and so you can judge my prejudices you should know that my primary turntable is an LP12 with the Hercules Regulator and a MMT arm.
Thanks guys. I had a feeling that getting a better turntable would be the result.

I'll look into the Herbie mat and see how that shapes up.

And yes the tracker is the stock cartridge and I'm upgrading that also.
Hi, Gerald,

The mmf-2.2 better than a Linn? You should post that over at the Vinyl Asylum. Might be an interesting (and lively) response!


What I wrote was "Better than a "Linn Basik",which is what Roddierod said he had owned in the past not an LP12. Do you know the difference? I also specified the original version Basik with the not so great Basik arm. The Akido version was a substantial improvement. I also mentioned I own an LP12 that is my reference. I was giving my opinion as the best value for the money spent. I currently own and use all of the turntables I mentioned and thus can do side by side comparisons. Challenge Posts like yours' do not offer information or in any way add to knowledge base of the forum. Finally if you have something to say say it here (oh,and I do post on AA under the same moniker)as this the forum and thread where the original question was asked.

Would it improve the sound to close to the Linn or should I continue to hold out to find a Linn that I can afford right now.
Let's see. You used to have a Linn Basik (I'm guessing you mean Sondek witha Basik arm) and really loved the sound. Now you have a Music Hall MMF 2.2 and don't like the sound. You're wondering what to modify on the 2.2 to give it the musical satisfaction you got from the Linn.

You could chase your tail on this for years and hundreds of dollars, with no assurance that you'd achieve your sonic vision. Or you can save the angst, time, money (it's more expensive in the long run), and disappointment and save up to get what you know worked for you.

Currently there's a used Sondek/Basik with Valhalla upgrade and RATA cartridge on A'gon for $1200/offer. All things considered, that's not all that much more than what you already have in your 2.2. Sell your 2.2 and the gap narrows even more.
OK after reading both Tketcham's and JohnnyB53's posts it seems to be a general misunderstanding that a Linn Basik is a form or variation of an LP12.This is simply not so. The Basik was Linn's attempt at a budget Turntable. Attached below is a link from the "Vinyl Engine" for the Linn Basik instruction manual. As you can see in the manual the Basik is not a suspended turntable like the LP12. Instead (actually quite similar to the MF2.2) it relies on three solidly mounted isolation feet for it's suspension. Most would agree that it was not in the same class either soundwise or construction wise as the LP12. Also the first version came with the Basik arm which left a lot to be desired in regard bearing quality and rigidity. As I mentioned in my earlier post the later versions with the Akito arm were much better. As to a comparison to the MMF 2.2 the Musical Fidelity has a more rigid plinth,suspended motor and a better arm and bearings.No it's not a world beater but as I mentioned in my earlier post it can be made to sound quite decent without a major investment. With all that said if you want a Linn then look for a used LP12 as there are plenty around but keep in mind that setup is a major part of the Linn sound and requires a great deal of patience so make sure that learn the technique or find someone to do it for you.Good luck and have fun.


Hi, Jerry,

Yes, I was thinking you were talking about a LP12 and not the budget Basik. My apologies. I do agree that the mmf-2.2 is a decent turntable for the money, especially since the tonearm upgrade. And I believe we agree that if Rod is looking for a big improvement by adding a different tonearm, he'd be better off by just buying a turntable further up the chain.

Thanks Tom, and you are correct if there is an arm change involved the is no point in staying with the MMF 2.2.

Best Regards, Jerry
04-10-09: Geraldm121
Thanks Tom, and you are correct if there is an arm change involved the is no point in staying with the MMF 2.2.
That was my point as well, even though I'm obviously not well-versed in the Linn model names. The MMF 2.2 is an entry-level platform, and an arm change alone isn't going to give the OP what he's seeking.