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kleraudioOffline
Post subject: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 02, 2014 - 09:25 PM
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Hey everyone, I've been lurking on these boards for a bit but decided to sign up.

Here's my situation. I live in a small two bedroom apartment. I also produce music, mostly vinyl sample based.

My turntable is set up in the second bedroom where I have my studio. I've been using a Numark TT USB to bring in my vinyl samples because I'm poor and can't really afford an expensive table.

I also listen to my favorite records in here as I have some nice studio monitors and no room in the living room for a turntable set up. The way my set up is now, I run my TTUSB into my audio interface, record arm a track in Ableton Live, and I can listen to my vinyl.

My questions,

Will the TTUSB ruin my really nice records that I buy specifically for listening? It's been bothering me lately as I've dove deeper into these forums. Most of the vinyl I sample from is from thrift shops/flea markets/etc... The stuff I buy to sit down and listen to is mostly from record stores and Amazon. Those are my "top shelf" records. Ones I cherish.

If the TTUSB will ruin my records will a simple needle swap fix that? And why would it ruin the records, I don't know much about the mechanics of turntables.

I don't have room in here for a receiver and I'm already set up with an audio interface. I've been looking at the Project Carbon with a USB out as that would be perfect for this room. Is that table built any differently than the highly recommended project carbon without the USB out?

Sorry for all the questions, but now that I'm no longer "ignorant" the questions have been popping up like mad!

I don't want to spam the board with my music, but if it's OK to post my bandcamp page let me know and I'll post a link Smile
 
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Post subject: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 03, 2014 - 09:50 AM
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Hi and welcome to the RCG.

I don't see how your Numark turntable would "ruin" records unless they're grossly mishandled or filthy.

If you're interested in upgrading, your best value will be a better quality vintage turntable. Look for one at the flea markets and thrifts you frequent and it doesn't hurt to ask while looking.

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kleraudioOffline
Post subject: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 03, 2014 - 03:11 PM
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Thank you for the reply! Everything I've read says that the plasticky numark will ruin my nice vinyl! Have I been mislead?

The problem with used is I don't know enough about turntables to know if a used one is a bargain. I found a Technics 1200 (not MKII) for 150 and guy claims it's flawless. But what do I know?!

I would hate to purchase it and see that it's tracking way too heavy or the needle is shot, or the belt is worn, etc.... though the 1200 is direct drive Smile

Is 150 for that table a good price?

I'm also taking a strong look at the AT LP-120. Any thoughts on that one? Seems very nice.

I use my table mainly for bringing vinyl samples into Ableton Live as I produce music and I'm very heavily sample based. The USB on board is a BIG BIG plus for me as I won't have to buy a phono pre amp to connect it to my computer.

Thoughts??
 
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ChadFromCanadaOffline
Post subject: Re: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 03, 2014 - 05:59 PM
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kleraudio wrote:
Thank you for the reply! Everything I've read says that the plasticky numark will ruin my nice vinyl! Have I been mislead?



I've heard a lot of talk that Crossleys and other such budget, non-vintage TTs are not very high quality and don't have the best stylii/cartridges to go along with them. I don't think it's as dramatic as people say (that it literally ruins your records with each and every play), but it's worth investing in a higher quality TT anyway, as not only will you get more bang for your buck overall, but they are more easily upgraded (for example, I bought a Project Debut Carbon, which came with the Ortofon Red cartridge, and the next logical upgrade is to the Blue cartridge, so I spend a little bit of money and upgrade the TT (further down the line I could try the Orange, or maybe a new TT). Something like a Crossley or Numark is something you have to replace entirely to upgrade.

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CliveOffline
Post subject: RE: Re: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 03, 2014 - 07:41 PM
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When I got back into vinyl a few years ago, I had one of the Ion USBTTs, which are the exact same as the Numark ones (same parent company, inMusic). It worked fine and didn't ruin any of my records, new or old; my only real complaint was that it was a little treble-y, so when I did a vinyl-to-digital transfer, I had to eq in some low end. Eventually I bought a used ProJect Debut III from a guy who was upgrading. The AT tables are about the best budget TT out there at the moment, and AT makes great needles FWIW, though I don't know what it comes with. $150 for a 1200 is probably a steal; if you get it and don't like it, you could probably still sell it off and make money on the deal.

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kleraudioOffline
Post subject: RE: Re: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 03, 2014 - 10:51 PM
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I mis-spoke, the $150 was for an SL-1300.

The problem is I would really like my next table to have USB connectivity for my musical pursuits. I am a heavy vinyl sampler.

I've got my eye on that U-turn Orbit now for 180 bucks. It seems pretty damn nice at that price. I do like that LP-120 but it seems just a bit bulky and has way more features than I would ever want. I like the more streamlined look.

Whatya guys think of the Orbit? Has really nice reviews so far. I figure if I get something like that, I can keep the Numark deck around for when I sample vinyl into Ableton and only use it for that.

I dunno, my head is really spinning. And it's not like i have some super duper system to play it out of either. I have 2 powered Yamaha HS-5 that I use for mixing audio. That will be my playback system in my tiny little studio which will double as my listening room as there is no room in the living room for a set up that I would like.
 
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Post subject: Re: RE: Re: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 04, 2014 - 11:40 AM
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kleraudio wrote:

The problem is I would really like my next table to have USB connectivity for my musical pursuits. I am a heavy vinyl sampler.

I've got my eye on that U-turn Orbit now for 180 bucks. It seems pretty damn nice at that price. I do like that LP-120 but it seems just a bit bulky and has way more features than I would ever want. I like the more streamlined look.

Whatya guys think of the Orbit? Has really nice reviews so far. I figure if I get something like that, I can keep the Numark deck around for when I sample vinyl into Ableton and only use it for that.

I dunno, my head is really spinning. And it's not like i have some super duper system to play it out of either. I have 2 powered Yamaha HS-5 that I use for mixing audio. That will be my playback system in my tiny little studio which will double as my listening room as there is no room in the living room for a set up that I would like.


You really don't need "USB connectivity" on a turntable to listen to records or do vinyl to digital transfers.

I use the following:

1) Technics SP-15 or Technics SL-1200 for playback.
2) connected to a stand alone phono preamp (Bugle Pro)
3) connected to the input on a M-Box Pro analog-to-digital interface
4) connected to my PC via firewire (Goldwave software for creating & editing WAV files)
5) output of the M-Box Pro connected to a line level input on a conventional stereo receiver & speakers.

With this set-up I've done many thousands of transfers. In addition, I can monitor the playback as I'm transferring or playback WAV files that are archived on my computer.

The "USB turntables" are typically inexpensive low-end units that appeal to those wanting easy plug-n-play hook up. In reality, using a high quality vintage turntable (such as the quartz-locked direct drive Technics I use) will give far better results than the low end units.

The equipment I'm using is not the final word. There are plenty of excellent high-end vintage turntables to be found used for little money. Many choices for phono preamps and Analog-To-Digital devices. Lacking a stand alone phono preamp, you could always hook up the turntable to the phono input on a receiver (that's so equipped) and run the "tape out" signal to your A/D interface.

Even simpler and cheaper yet... just use the internal sound card in your computer. All you need is a simple "Y" adaptor (two standard RCA to one RCA stereo minijack).

I hope this is not too confusing. The point is that a USB connectivity feature on a turntable limits your choices unnecessarily.

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CactusCowboyOffline
Post subject: Re: RE: Re: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 04, 2014 - 11:54 AM
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kleraudio wrote:
I mis-spoke, the $150 was for an SL-1300.

The problem is I would really like my next table to have USB connectivity for my musical pursuits. I am a heavy vinyl sampler.

I've got my eye on that U-turn Orbit now for 180 bucks. It seems pretty damn nice at that price. I do like that LP-120 but it seems just a bit bulky and has way more features than I would ever want. I like the more streamlined look.

Whatya guys think of the Orbit? Has really nice reviews so far. I figure if I get something like that, I can keep the Numark deck around for when I sample vinyl into Ableton and only use it for that.


JUST MY OPINION....!

The Technics SL-1300 would be a better choice than any new turntable in the under $500 price range. It will provide exceptional speed accuracy without any audible wow & flutter, rumble or hum.

I would not even bother with the Orbit. Good for a beginner & casual playback. At its price point, it is what it is, a very rudimentary and simple belt drive designed & built with necessary cost driven compromises.

I have a friend who owns an AT-LP120 and I've listened to numerous Jazz & Classical LPs at his house. For what it is (a Technics SL-1200 knockoff) it's not bad. If I were buying a sub $500 new turntable, this would be my choice. Many nice features including 78 RPM, interchangeable headshell/cartridge, and pitch control make this an attractive possibility.

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kimzterOffline
Post subject: RE: Re: RE: Re: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 04, 2014 - 12:07 PM
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I am not by any means an expert on turntables. However I did have two of the low end usb ones. The first one failed at around 50 plays, the speed went all over the place to the point of being unlistenable . The second one I got from a friend who wasn't using it anymore so I don't know how many times it was used, but it only lasted about a dozen more and the same thing happened. I bought a used Denon and a preamp and haven't had any trouble since.
 
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Post subject: RE: Re: RE: Re: RE: Turntable questions :)  PostPosted: Sep 04, 2014 - 12:12 PM
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I don't know anything about Ableton, but in Audacity you can apply the RIAA curve after you record the album effectively eliminating the need of a phono preamp. I've never done it and it's probably not ideal, but I'd still prefer it to a usb table. And chances are whatever Audacity does to apply the curve is probably no worse than what the usb table will do and your sound card maybe do better a/d conversion as well. If you're planning to do a lot of sampling I think it would pay dividends in the long run to start with something better than a usb table. They always seem to have that hollow/rumble that bothers me. Never heard an Orbit and $150 for a SL-1300 seems a bit high, but if it is flawless and has a decent cart it's not outrageous.
 
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