Which: VPI HW19 Jr. or III vs. REGA P3 and P25

I've seen a lot of positive threads on the VPI HW19 series of turntables and have been considering this or a Rega P3 or P25 turntable. Anyone have an opinion on which of these machines is the best?? Obviously these 4 turntables are at slightly different price points, so to be fair lets compare them as follows:

P25 vs. HW19 III
P3 vs. HW19 Jr.
Sorry, lets put some tonearms on these puppies:

P25 with the RB600 vs. HW19 MKIII with the RB600
P3 with the RB300 vs. HW19 jr with Audioquest PT 6
Having heard both the Rega and VPI turntables many times, and speaking as a long-time owner of the HW-19 (first the original, then upgraded to the Mk3, and finally upgraded to the Mk4 with a Super Armboard), I'd recommend the VPI over the Rega in both cases. The HW19 Jr. gives you an excellent starting point that is upgradable all the way to the Mk4, but if you have the cash, I'd go with the HW-19 Mk3 with either the Rega RB600/RB900 tonearm, or the VPI JMW10.
try an audio note turntable 1 with an audio note arm 1..you may be pleasantly surprised
I would recommend the P25 over the VPI, simply because it just sounds more musical, especially in the area of PRaT.
For some very interesting insight into Tonearms read this thread. Good luck to you on your adventure.
Strange tonearm tweak Long
I would skip over the P3. The price scale reflects performence in this case. The P25 may sound quicker than the VPI, but the VPI can be upgraded and/or modified. The P25 does not offer an upgrade path. I have the VPI and like it. Especially good value used. Im thinking of trying a cheap mod to tighten up the bass. Dont get the wrong idea, at this price point the bass is excellent.
Set and forget? Rega P25. Set and forget with upgrade option? VPI.
I would look at Origin Live if you buy the tonearm seperately. The modified 250 is a great value that has spawned many copies.
Rega and VPI both make fine 'tables. I would recommend the VPI because of the upgrade path, which the Rega doesn't have. However, if you are not into 'tweaking', the Rega is an easier setup. The Rega is much more of a 'plug and play' type. Only you can decide whether you want to tweak and upograde, or you want to set it and forget it.

The VPI Scout is better than all you have listed.
Stated Bias: I asked this same question a year or so ago, ended up with a VPI HW19 MKII w/ RB600.

At the time, I decided to step up from my old Technics BD20, and didn't know which way to go. TWL and others noted, as Jmcgrogan2 does above, that the VPI offers an extensive upgrade path (including the option of upgrading to bearing and platter), which the Rega doesn't.

At the time it appealed conceptually to my interest in tweaking, and I have to give props to TWL again...going VPI allows me to budget for future upgrades, and TWL's HIFI mod on the RB600 has made an enormous improvement in presentation.

All to say, if you can score the VPI MKIII at a reasonable price, it will have a substantial amount of upgrades already installed (vs. the Jr.) and I would bear witness I have found it a good value.


Footnote: I promised to add a review to the "Strange Tonearm Tweak. Long" thread which I will as soon as business travel permits; suffice to say it will be extremely positive.
Hi Timwat,

I apologize - specifically to Whyt_rabbit, that this is not related to this message thread or his original question. But, I'm new to analog (coming back to it) and I have another message thread on AudiogoN, "Beginner" audiophile Turntable for $200-$300?.

You stated that you upgraded from a Technics BD-20 to the VPI. Since I'm just getting started in this "game", I'm wondering if you would be willing to "recommend" the Technics SL-BD22 to a "newbie" just getting started (with a budget and not sure yet if I would be interested in "tweaking"...more interested in "plug & play" at this point)? This would allow me to enjoy my long-time not listened to album collection sooner than waiting to purchase say a Music Hall MMF-2.1 or especially the NAD 533 - both inferior to the MUCH more upgradeable VPI HW-19 Jr.! All of which are much more expensive than the Technics SL-BD22. But I still want a decent (or better) turntable.

Based on what I've seen of the VPI HW-19 Jr. (specifically), I feel it's the best step into audiophilia with it's upgrade path (stretching out the dollars for several paychecks ;-). So, I could - like you - focus my budget more wisely by upgrading straight to the VPI HW-19 Jr. or a similar VPI model, if I find that I am ready to jump more deeply into this "game" and "tweaking".

Sorry for being a bit long-winded!

Feel free to post the answer on my message thread that I gave a link for above.


Hi, wlusk:

Ok, will post on the referenced "beginner" thread.
Tim, I Can't wait to read your review of the HI FI mod!!!