One of the best TT ever, period.
Regards and enjoy the music,
Dear @blz_tone: If you can put your hands on a good operation condition GT 2000 then you don't need to ask nothing just BUY IT at once!!!
One of the best TT ever, period.
Regards and enjoy the music,
Compared to most of the other top of the line vintage Japanese direct-drive turntables, the GT2000 is readily available in Tokyo, every time I have been there and touring the audio salons. (Our son lives in Tokyo, so I am there once every couple of years, going again in October.) Whereas, for example, I have never seen (in person) a Pioneer Exclusive P3 or even a Technics SP10 Mk3 for sale in a store over there. This may only be a reflection of the possibility that the GT2000 was a bit less expensive than the others, and therefore more units may have been sold. Hifido has the GT2000 very often on-line, too. For reasons unknown to me, it seems to have become more sought after in recent years, which has led to a rise in prices on the used market. Raul, if you like it so much, can you enlighten me on the features that make it so desirable vs the many other contenders? Thanks. I do know it has a nice over-sized platter.
I went to the URL provided by Theophile. The guys on Audiokarma seem to have been in general agreement that owning one of these vintage beasts is risky, in terms of their non-repairability if something breaks. I have to say that I disagree with this point of view. First of all, the smart thing to do is to replace all the electrolytic capacitors immediately upon purchase, if this has not been done already. Most of the failures result directly or indirectly from leaky electrolytics. And replacing the lytics is cheap insurance. After that, all the transistors used in "those days" are either still available or there is a modern superior substitute. Replacing a bad IC can be a problem, in theory, but I have been able to find supposedly NLA ICs for both my Denon DP80 and my Victor TT101 (which actually did not need a new IC), by searching on-line, and they were very cheap. In addition, the ultra-rare chip for a Technics SP10 has been re-created using discrete SMD parts by a NYC-based engineer, and his pseudo-IC works better than the original. This same gentleman was also able to troubleshoot my TT101. So, if you want a GT2000, don't hesitate to purchase one for fear of a problem of this sort. Of course, you should do your homework on the provenance of the one you finally do select to purchase.
Dear @lewm : I think you dit not read yet the whole link I posted to the OP, please read it. There you can find out a precise answer to your question where you can see that in some specs, like w&f, beats not only every single Technics but even the P3 by Pionner.
Additional to that it comes with very good tonearm. Here you can see it:
Can any one ask for a better TT that this Yamaha?, now just imagine this GT 2000 with today up grades not only at electronic level ( as you mentioned. ) but on: plinth, platform and the like.
Years ago, in other thread, I posted that this and the DP-100 by Denon were the TTs TO GO . Anyway, the Yamaha is other example of the greatness of vintage japanese DD TTs.
Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul, I generally would pay no attention to specifications published by a manufacturer, although I would assume that actual units perform "close enough" to the published specs. But I would never use such information to make a fine distinction between the GT2000 and another great turntable, like the P3. In addition, you say the GT2000 has a "very good" tonearm. It probably does, but what does that term mean, exactly? We do know that the tonearm on the P3 was made by M-S for Pioneer, and it is widely regarded as a very good tonearm, too. I've seen the P3 tonearm for sale separately for as much as $7,000 (which is kind of ridiculous, I admit, since you can buy a complete P3 for less money). So, I would ask for some hard facts, like what is the platter mass, what kind of motor does it use and how much torque does it generate when needed? How is the plinth made and with what materials that we might think are good for dampening? Etc. Having said all that, I did do some reading on Vintage Knob, and I saw that the GT2000X (the upscale version of the GT2000) uses a coreless motor. This is a big plus in my own frame of reference. The X version also has a very massive bearing assembly and an 18kg platter(!), which is spectacular for direct-drive, the most massive platter I know about among vintage DD turntables. In fact, now I want a GT2000X. I will look for one in Tokyo. I'm convinced.
The GT 2000 is relatively(the key word here) inexpensive compared to the other Uber Direct Drive TTs solely due to their plentiful supply on the second-hand market. Yamaha sold many of these turntables in Japan, the only market in which they were sold when new.
As only the Japanese can do, it was a co-operative effort designed by Yamaha in conjunction with Micro Seiki using a motor and motor control electronics from the Japan Victor engineer who designed the motor and motor control electronics for the TT-81. That same engineer has stated in a Japanese blog that he prefers the GT 2000.
It is quite a revelation to hear. Whether through luck, a synergistic combination of design elements or a stroke of genius, it sounds superb.
The basic GT 2000 was intended as a starter module to which the owner could add individual optional elements which would bring the basic module up to what the designers envisaged as the best Direct Drive they could present. The key elements that could be added were an outboard power supply, a 38 pound platter, a suspension cradle and a vacuum platter mat ala Audio Technica. The 'fully loaded' GT 2000 with all those elements would weigh over 120 pounds. None of that would matter one bit if the basic unit didn't excel.
Fortunately, it doesn't excel. It exceeds.
This is one of the great vintage turntables. This is why it sold shitloads in Japan. The country which, at the time, had plentiful access to TT101s, L-07Ds, SP 10 MkIIIs. None of which sold as well in Japan. They weren't giving them away, so: What did the Japanese know that we are still to understand? It was word of mouth testimony that made this turntable the sales success that it was.
Remember, that the GT 2000 was released at the height of the Western media's rabid aversion to Direct Drives and the release year of 1982 coincided with the introduction of CD. The GT 2000 based on that should have tanked. Fortunately people have ears as well as eyes. Obviously Japanese ears liked what they heard. Very, very much liked what they heard, it would appear.
I have found that, as excellent as the GT 2000 is, it benefits mightily from being isolated. I live in a brick house with a concrete slab floor. The rack which only supports the turntable is welded steel with a stone top that weighs over 85Kg. Nothing flimsy there. The difference between isolation and without is night and day(when it is optimised). Some interpret my advocation of isolation for the GT 2000 as an indication that the GT 2000 has a serious flaw. I've already said that the basic unit without isolation is superb sounding. When isolated it rearranges one's sensibility of what can be achieved from vinyl playback. I personally think that all excellent non-suspended turntables require isolation. Under all circumstances.
But I digress. Do I think that the GT 2000 is the best top of the line Japanese Direct Drive? Well I've not heard the contenders. However the contenders are all superb. So in most cases it will come down to
how they are used.The GT would be up there with the better ones.
Mostly due to my praise of the unit there is a small group of individuals who post at AudioKarma that have bitten the bullet and taken the plunge. They all had very good turntables previously and none of them have been disappointed with the 2000. Aside from them, the testimony is from the Japanese alone.
I don't expect this thread to generate any interest due to the fact that the only person greatly discussing this turntable is myself. That's not a big enough sample size for most folks. That's not a problem. I'll enjoy owning one whether the whole world knows about it or no-one knows about it.
Don't fall for the lie that the GT 750 is as good as the GT 2000. Only defrauded chumps fall for that one. The 750 was released on the back of the success of the 2000, at a lower price point(due to its being styled similarly to the 2000 but nowhere near as well designed, engineered or optioned) and despite being half the price of the GT 2000, failed to reach anywhere near the sales figures of the more expensive 2000s types. More than likely word of mouth again getting around that, despite the lower price of the 750, one was better off saving their money and waiting to buy the more expensive 2000. The 750 isn't bad. One isn't a chump for buying the GT 750, but some will try and tell you that it is as good as a 2000. Don't be chumped by them.
The GT 2000x came with the same stock platter as the GT 2000. 6.5Kg. The 18Kg platter was an optional extra for BOTH the GT 2000/L and the 2000x. Moment of inertia with the 6.5 Kg stock platter was specified at 1.2 tonnes/cm squared.
The fact that the bearing of all three(GT 2000. GT 2000L. GT 2000x) was rated to carry the 18Kg platter would imply that the 6.5Kg stock platter would minimally load the thrust pad in the bearing. This would bode well for the condition of the bearing long term.
The GT 2000 can be found in Japan for around $1500US. The GT 2000x is difficult to find for less than $3000US(with the standard 6.5Kg platter). The 18Kg optional extra gunmetal platter for the entire 2000 series(not just the 200x) usually sells for over $2000US. Yes. That is not a typo. The platter alone sells for more than the price of the entire GT 2000. More than likely for the GT 2000x and the 18Kg gunmetal platter one will be paying higher prices than these.
The GT 2000x, which was released on the back of the success of the 2000 3 years after the GT 2000/L, struggled for sales. More than likely due to the well received excellence of the GT 2000/L models at the lower price point detracting from the 2000x. Rather than the lesser sales figures due to lower performance of the 750 and 1000. The rarity of the 2000x(they are rare) would account for some of the price variation. Interestingly enough and probably based on the second hand prices of the x Yamaha re-released the GT 2000x in 1991. It still didn't sell in great numbers. I'd imagine that the sheer numbers of GT 2000s made the 2000x a difficult model to shift.
Dear Raul, And you need to read again my response to your earlier post that suggested I should re-read the blurb on Vintage Knob, which contains many errors of fact, at least as regards some other vintage turntables, I might add. For example, assuming theophile knows whereof he speaks, it would seem Vintage Knob is incorrect in implying that the GT2000X per se came with the heavy 18kg platter. I did take note of the coreless motor, and I do think that is a virtue. The GT2000 is probably a fine turntable; I have never heard one, but I have seen used ones for sale in Tokyo. What more do you want me to say? JP points out one major reason why I take manufacturer's published specs with more than a grain of salt. The W&F measurement will always depend upon how you measure it, and there is/was no standardized method. Same goes for S/N. In fact, at some point in the 1980s, the Japanese industry revised the method for measuring S/N, with the outcome that all turntables suddenly became quieter, if you only read the spec and are not cognizant of the change in method. I expect that the GT2000 would be "up there" with the top echelon of the vintage DD genre, if the tonearm is up to snuff. I am not disagreeing with you.
Axel stated on the 2000x page that the 18Kg platter was optional. The mistake he made was in saying that the increased diameter motor shaft in the x was necessary for the 18Kg platter. It isn't. The 18Kg platter was introduced 3 years before the release of the 2000x with the release of the 2000/L models which had the smaller diameter motor shaft.
lewm, I would expect that since you already own some thoroughly excellent Direct Drives, that the 2000 won't blow you away sonically. I also doubt that you'd be disappointed with it.
Dear @lewm : You posted and " ask me:
""" So, I would ask for some hard facts, like what is the platter mass, what kind of motor does it use and how much torque does it generate when needed? How is the plinth made and with what materials that we might think are good for dampening? """
and what I posted was that everythink is in the link and that you have to read it again and that all the 2000 series comes with coreless kind of motor.
Yes, specs maybe don't tell us all but it's important to take in count because ( some way or the other ) is the only objective information we have because we don't have on hand the 2000. My statement is valid for any audio item, I know you don't " care " and fine with me.
The @jpjones3318 post is right regarding that in that spec Yamaha did not specify the standar below took that measure.
After that post I check in the japanese bible and that 0.005 number is stated as 0.002%! showing no standard about.
Anyway, as I posted several years ago the GT 2000 along the top Kenwood, Exclusive P3a, Sp 10mk3, Denon DP 100 and maybe the Sony PS-X9 ( I think ? ) is at the very top DD vintage japanese TTs. The JVC does not belongs to this " particular/special " group or the DP-80/75.
Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul, I don't disagree with you in your objective judgement of the TT101 and the DP80. If you think of them only on the basis of what you can read about them, their build solidity, and their specs, then they indeed are not even meant to compete in the same league. In my case, in my system, the DP80 did outperform the SP10 Mk2 but falls short of the Mk3 and the L07D. However, the TT101 re-plinthed by me is a surprising revelation. It's quite excellent. I can't say how it would stack up against the Mk3 and L07D, because it's in a different system in my house, but it's excellent. JP can testify to its electronics better than I; he fixed mine. Some products do punch above their weight. You should know this, since you pointed out to all of us the excellence of some of the best MM and MI cartridges, and you relied on listening to judge them. I am not here to argue about the TT101, however, and you are welcome to your opinion as always.
Dear @lewm : Look I'm not saying that the DP-80 or the JVC are not good TTs/performers because both are very good but as everything in audio exist different quality performance levels on TTs too.
Now, the real subject here is if those differences on quality performance level are " night and day ".
All those TT models we are talking here are excelent ( I include here the Denon DP-75 and maybe there are other good ones. ) and maybe when we test it in exactly the same conditions those differences on quality performance be at minimum and this is because the performance of the DP-80/75 or the JVC are really good, is almost at the top of the quality performance ladder but when we are talking of so high quality levels that try to achieve or pass to the next level does not means " huge differences " but minimal and with a very high price for it. specs with this top TTs
What really means specs with these top TTs? is it because those specs differences the differences on quality performance?
maybe not because I know for sure that I can't detect between w&f differences on specs: 0.015% and 0.01% or between 80 db on s/n against 85 db. or higher.
At this quality performance levels those specs means " extreme " quality attention in the design, selected parts and design execution. Example: in all top performers against the other excelent TTs even coming from the same manufacturer the TT platter is different and this sole change make per se differences.
For many many years I used only DD units from: Pionner, Denon and Technics. I was unaware of the BD experience but when I started in the " high end " DD units were forbidden on this market niche: no one talked about and the " real " high end must stay with BD TT units and my ignorance level about made that I start to buy BD TT ( big mistake ) but that ignorance from my part made that I been really exited for the " new " experience and looking for that massive BD TTs as Micro Seiki and many other that even today the people with money still are buying non-sense huge massive BD TT with out knowing that that massive designs just goes against quality performance levels: not even a kg. of pure gold is as expensive as 1 kg. of steel on those massive BD TT and I said this because that's exactly what the massive TTs buyers are buying not top quality performance.
I still own my Technics and Denons along BD ones.
Today I'm not any more at the TT hunting mainly because I'm totally convinced that the cartridge, tonearm and phono stage ( in that order ) are more important and makes the " difference " in the analog experience. I'm not saying that TT is not important because it's but at other level.
Regards and enjoy the music,
Had mine for about 10 years now and absolutely love it! I have a couple of the optional accessories that seriously improve the sound though. The first is the external power supply...an absolute must to get the most out of this TT. Second I have the vacuum platter that is really a rebadged Audio Technica AT-666 vacuum platter...but who cares! It works as advertised and again further improves the sound.
I prefer this TT to the ones I had before: Voyd (3 motor with split phase PS and Helius Cyalene arm) and Michell Gyrodeck SE (with Rega arm).
One note: this TT has possibly one of the best speed stabilities of any TT ever made as it used a bi-directional servo (like the best JVCs...so no hunting) and a coreless motor, so there was no cogging. I have tested it with my Allnic Speednic and it is absolutely perfect to within the accuracy of that device...I cannot say this with ANY other TT I have put the Speednic on...including some seriously high end TTs.
Dynamics are explosive, bass powerful but the sound is in no way overly dry or clinical. I think it is probably getting closer to what is really on the record than most.
Agree with Bimasta. I also own a 100VAC Denon DP80 and use a stepdown. If anything, the step down transformer affords a form of isolation from your household AC contamination. You can buy a very capable unit for well under $100 off eBay. I actually own two of them.
Pani, Based on having owned an SP10 Mk2 and what I know about the GT2000, I would choose the latter. This is not a night and day difference, and it is not meant to slur the Mk2, which is a fine turntable. However, I like the "bi-directional" servo mechanism (I think it may be similar to the circuit used in the Victor TT101), the over-size platter, and the coreless motor of the GT2000 vs the Mk2. This is just my opinion.
"Now, next question: what's the best reasonably priced cartridge (<$1000) to use with it?"
Wow, now you've REALLY started a discussion! I suggest you read Raul's legendary thread --
It may be the longest thread in internet history, and incredibly informative.
You'll probably get suggestions from lots of people. In many cases it'll just be "I have THIS cartridge and I love it so it must be the best." So stick to ideas from people who've owned the GT2000 -- they'll know about the cartridge/headshell/tonearm matching issues, which are crucial.
Good luck on your quest...
Lewm, I didn't know you also have the DP80. Have you recapped it, or done other maintenance or updates? Mine is still stock, and I haven't used it in four years. I'm hesitant about using it — I once killed a nice Sansui DD just by switching it on. After four years of idleness, I would use a Variac to coax the Denon gently back into action, but I'm also concerned long-term. There are so many stories online about a failing cap destroying one of those irreplaceable chips, and thus destroying the turntable. You are more experienced than I, and I'd appreciate any guidance you can offer. Thanks.
I would use caution prior to using a Variac, some circuits react poorly.
that said I'm not a teck.
"Now, next question: what's the best reasonably priced cartridge (<$1000) to use with it?"
I believe you may have read the tread on another forum regarding the metal rods that are present running down its length and were
removed by the owner to accommodate a less restrictive cartridge
Personally the only thing regarding the GT-2000 that is an "iffy" factor
for me is the limitation of optional arms that can be mounted
without some surgery.
I'd state that the stories you have "heard" are vastly exaggerated, I have had over 50 of various DP series coming through here over the past few years and have never had one with a "chip" out. Once recapped they perform excellent.
Im working on a "GrooveMaster Vintage Direct Professional" issue of the DP80, with some of the features of my Current rebuild of the Denon DN308 (4 pieces) All spoken for already :-)
It involve of course scrapping the pot metal frame they are mounted on replacing it with 1" machined aluminum top plate and bottom plate sandwiching a hardwood frame. The Variable/Fixed speed selection will be eliminated along with the strobe light, which will be replaced with the Roadrunner tachometer form Phoenix Engineering, I picked up quite a few of these when they closed shop.
Stay tuned on updates
bimasta, My DP80 was not working quite up to snuff when I bought it. So first of all, I assumed that the single chip that runs the turntable was not working normally, and I WAS able to find it from any of several vendors in the Far East. In fact, it was easy to do that, and I have several such chips myself. Then I gave the turntable and the replacement chip to Bill Thalmann at Music Technologies in Springfield, VA. Bill found no problem with the chip in the turntable, but he did replace all the electrolytic capacitors and all the discrete transistors. The transistors were not blown, but Bill felt that the modern replacements for them are much better and make the DP80 run better. He was then able to calibrate it, and I have had zero problems ever since then, about 4 years. I urge you to have all the electrolytic capacitors replaced, ideally before you try to run the turntable, especially if you don't know when that was ever done in the past. (If it was never done, those lyrics are now ~36 years old, definitely hot reliable.) Consider it preventive maintenance, and if you do need a new chip, I can get you one.
Thanks Totem — I'm not a tech either.
Anyone, please correct me when I'm wrong, that's why I'm here: to learn. I've used Variacs on older less sophisticated all-tube circuits — that seems to be okay. I know newer SS gear has voltage regulators, relays, etc, that might make the Variac ineffective — but I was under the impression it was not HARMFUL, merely ineffective.
Am I wrong?
I've seen your site before, Peter. Incredible work! My ambition at this point is far more humble — just to use this marvelous turntable again, and be sure it's not damaged. It's very reassuring when you say "I have never had one with a "chip" out."
But you also have a caveat: "Once recapped they perform excellent."
So, like Lewm, you're saying recapping is essential?
Again, please correct my errors.
Thanks Lewm for your detailed account — almost a John Le Carre tale tracing lost chips in the exotic East. And thanks so much for offering a new chip — I doubt it will be necessary if I do the recap — that seems to be the consensus.
I'll admit, I was hoping for "easier" news. I'll be doing the recap (and the new transistors) myself, and it's a lot of time and work. I'm not a tech but I have the basic skills I think are required and if I'm careful it should be okay... I think... fingers crossed...
Thank you all riding to the aid of a fellow audiophile. That's why this forum is so great.
Yes I'd say a recap and replacement of the most of the old transistors would be essential as well as readjusting the circuit once its been fixed. If your somewhat handy you could do this yourself, but it requires some knowledge and the proper tools.
Don't know where you are but I might be able to help with it for a nominal fee.
Thanks Peter. I'm okay with all the work, up "readjusting the circuit" — the only knowledge I have is to know my limitations, and my only electronic tool is a multimeter.
So I'll be taking you up on your kind offer. But it won't be right away; a lot of work to do first.
PS — I'm in LA, and you're El Cajon?
Damned autocorrect: In my last post, the last sentence, "(If it was never done, those lyrics are now ~36 years old, definitely hot reliable.) Consider it preventive maintenance, and if you do need a new chip, I can get you one." I typed "lytics", as in electrolytic capacitors, not lyrics. And "not reliable", not "hot reliable". Can't blame autocorrect for that.
Peter, I am very surprised to learn that you want to use the Roadrunner with your revised and modified DP80, unless you are just using it to monitor speed with a digital readout. The Denon itself monitors speed constantly by means of the continuous tape around the inside of the platter. From what I know, which is probably less than you, this affords constant speed correction via altering voltage and current to the 3-phase motor of the DP80, whereas the RR only "looks" at speed once per revolution.
That said, I am now using the 25W Phoenix power regenerator to run my Lenco monitored and controlled by the RR. It’s fun to know that the platter is running at 33.3333 rpm or thereabouts. I was previously using a Walker Audio Motor Controller on the Lenco; the Phoenix ensemble seems to do the job a bit better. Not a night and day difference, but better.
I only will use the RoadRunner for a readout in place of the strobe light, I will of curse leave the original control system in place.
You mention that the RoarRunner only looks at the RPM once a revolution and while this is correct if there was any deviation what so ever it would not read out 33.333 which is typically does on these fine machines. The Strobe light on the DP80 is hard to retrofit into the plinths as the platter is fairly thick which requires the mirror be sunk deeper into the plinth for sufficient readability.
In rebuilding the DN308 tables which does not have a strobe i wanted a way of displaying the RPM and the Roadrunner its easily customized into the plinth, which in case of the DN308 will be a 1" thick Aluminum plate top and bottom sandwiching a hardwood frame. This lead to wanting to do a "professional" version of the DP80. Below a little sneak peak :-)
No comment on sbank's notation. He must know you better.
Funny, I didn't even see 'lyrics', I read it as 'lytics' because that was the context, it's what I was expecting. I'm getting lazy.
I edited books for Oxford University Press a long time ago, and I had to be eagle-eyed and error-free. Must get back to that.
The difference between the GT 2000 and the GT 2000L is twofold:
1) The GT 2000 used the same black veneer that is used on the NS 1000 speaker. The GT 2000L uses a walnut(?) veneer.
2) the GT 2000 is a fully manual turntable which can be fitted with the optional arm-lifter which lifts the arm at the end of the record side. The GT 2000L comes fitted with the optional arm lifter as stock standard.
Other than those two differences, the shade of the veneer and whether the arm lifted is an option or fitted as stock, there is absolutely no difference between the two models. They are fundamentally, essentially exactly the same identical turntable. All accessories which fit the one, fit the other. The plinth, motors, motor control electronics, platter and arms(with exception to the arm lifter) are exactly the same with no difference at all. Twins wearing different make-up.
The optional arm lifter can be fitted to the GT 2000, so in essence the biggest difference is the veneer. Identical twins with different make-up.
"Old Reliable" is more likely my moniker, not "Hot Reliable".
Thanks for your complete response, Theophile. One thing about the GT2000 is that if you are willing to pay the going price (seems to be $2400 to $2700) for a really nice one, you can own one any time your little heart desires. I almost pressed the button on one, until my superego said, "Wait a minute, Lew, you have FIVE freakin' turntables already." I'm sure the present state of easy availability will not persist over time, however.