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931 posts

Ultimate Geek


# 257131 17-Sep-2019 07:01
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Hi team

 

My daughter has got the vinyl bug and so we are in the market for an entry level Turntable. Researching this site and others I am leaning towards Audio Technica LP120 or LP60. Amazon prices looked amazing until I factor in shipping direct v youshop + custom duty I am not so sure I can justify the savings.

 

Has anyone gone through this exercise as the more I look, the more confused I get.

 

Cheers

 

Sam


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888 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2318896 17-Sep-2019 08:25
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I’m currently looking at the Marley Stir it Up Em-jt000, on sale at JB hifi for $222. Good reviews online, and the ability to upgrade the cartridge. Might be worth having a look at!

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  # 2318979 17-Sep-2019 10:08
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Bought a Pro-Ject turntable for my son a while back.  Came recommended from many reviews that suited our budget.  

 

It has an Ortofon cartridge.

 

Look at the stock at Real Groovy , pricey -   about $600 I think. 

 

 

 

cheers

 

 


 
 
 
 


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  # 2319036 17-Sep-2019 10:39
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Project Essential II turntable - a highly recommended entry-level manual turntable

 

cost: aprx NZD $500

 

Don't be tempted by cheap rubbish - Project are built to last, and are good value.

 

 





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  # 2319090 17-Sep-2019 11:42
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Agreed - the Projects some the AT and the Marley is horrid in comparison.

 

If your budget can't reach the Project, the AT has it over Marley.


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  # 2319110 17-Sep-2019 12:07
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I imported the Audio Technica AT LP120 a few years ago, with it being shipped directly from Amazon... in the end. It cost me around NZD $500 all up to import, when at the time the local retailers were selling it for $750.

I initially went to ship it via YouShop, as their shipping costs estimator placed it a little cheaper than Amazon's $150 for direct shipping. When it got to the YouShop warehouse, they quoted me a price of $250. Apparently the dimensions on the Amazon site were out, and volumetric shipping charges meant that the price sky rocketed way past their estimate. I approached YouShop about giving me a discount (even 10% would've done it), but they steadfastly refused, while handing out discount codes on social media like candy.

So I got Amazon to send them a return slip, and YouShop had to send the turntable back to them (handling the item twice, but still not receiving a single cent from me). Amazon also refunded the purchase price immediately, allowing me to get the turntable shipped directly from them as soon as the return slip had been generated.

 

It's a very capable turntable, but be aware that the hydraulic tonearm action failed on mine after a few months. Audio Technica refused to fix this as a warranty claim, because I didn't purchase the turntable locally. But apparently it's pretty simple to fix manually. I've just not bothered yet as it doesn't affect the overall operation, provided you manually lower the tonearm slowly.




931 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2319125 17-Sep-2019 12:28
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Thanks team

 

@dclegg - great insights and the warranty part is what concerns me. My initial calculations put the savings at ~$300 but forgot about customs duty and the savings dropped to about $100 which I probably can't justify in case there are any warranty issues. I think I'll buy local.  The ATLP 120 is high on my list but will start looking at Pro-Ject as well as recommended by others here.

 

 

 

Cheers

 

Sam


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Ultimate Geek


  # 2319126 17-Sep-2019 12:28
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dclegg:

 

I imported the Audio Technica AT LP120<SNIP>

 

It's a very capable turntable, but be aware that the hydraulic tonearm action failed on mine after a few months. 

 

 

A friend has this technics 1200 look alike also. Her hydraulic damper also failed while the turntable was very new but she never noticed until I told her how it was supposed to work (oops!).

 

I discovered this the hard way - I played a record and slammed the needle onto the record, not suspecting the damper had failed.

 

In general it otherwise seems okish - certainly not a patch on a 2nd hand technics 1200. If you can get one of those second hand you won't regret it.


 
 
 
 


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  # 2319145 17-Sep-2019 12:57
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elpenguino:

 

A friend has this technics 1200 look alike also. Her hydraulic damper also failed while the turntable was very new but she never noticed until I told her how it was supposed to work (oops!).

 

I discovered this the hard way - I played a record and slammed the needle onto the record, not suspecting the damper had failed.

 

In general it otherwise seems okish - certainly not a patch on a 2nd hand technics 1200. If you can get one of those second hand you won't regret it.

 



It's a good enough starting point, and benefits from having an in-built pre-amp, as many amplifiers don't have phono pre-amps built in any more. Overall build quality is solid (hydraulic mechanism problem notwithstanding :-)), and you can adjust all the necessary stuff (tracking weight, anti-skate, tonearm height).

I've already upgraded the cartridge and stylus to a Shure combo (who unfortunately have now got out of the stylus game, but Ortofon would be another excellent upgrade path), and I'm considering switching to a dedicated phono pre-amp. But even as a stock turntable using the inbuilt pre-amp the audio was pretty good. And having a direct drive motor means that there's one less consumable to worry about replacing.


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  # 2319813 18-Sep-2019 14:48
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I would get the entry level Project.
I used to have one. Its a quality TT designed to sound good rather than designed to look good. No stupid gimmicks .
The OM cartridge can be easily upgraded by up-specing the stylus .

 

Does your amp have a TT/phono input ?


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  # 2319826 18-Sep-2019 14:59
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Buy the Project but be mindful of not splashing out too much, as  it could be a passing fad.

 

See how it goes, as the ritual of listening to a vinyl record is very pleasing.  


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  # 2319844 18-Sep-2019 15:22
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I would get the Rega Planar 1 over the Pro-Ject, (they do an all-in-one with a Phono stage now as well - Planar 1 Plus) but at that price point, the differences are not too great. E

 

Either way consider buying from Real Groovy as, if you join their points scheme (create an account) at the same time, you should be able to get a decent discount even with your first purchase. Throw in some new vinyl as well and the discount will grow!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 





.

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  # 2319845 18-Sep-2019 15:24
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To add - assume you already have speakers/Amp - do you need a Phono stage as well?





.



931 posts

Ultimate Geek


  # 2319976 18-Sep-2019 19:41
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Thanks for advice guys. 

 

I don't have an amp so TT will need pre-amp and we will look at some powered speakers as well. Heathcotes have Pro-Ject Essential III for $479 which is within my budget. I did see Rega branded on Real Groovy so will check them out again. I live in Hamilton so going into Real Groovy is not easy but me and my 16yr daughter made the trip few weeks ago which reinforced the vinyl bug. She went straight for Queen, The Beatles, Elvis and Frank Sinatra, I was in the Hip Hop section - go figure.


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  # 2320250 19-Sep-2019 11:53
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Listening Post currently have the Pro-Ject Primary E Phone turntable on special at NZD $349 - this has a built-in phone stage and Ortofon cartridge.

 

 





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  # 2320360 19-Sep-2019 14:26
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Honestly , as someone who has in the past spent $1000's on TT/cartiridge etc ....

 

just by a CD player. Even if you have a few records , just buy a CD/DVD player and new CD's

If you dont allready have a killer $$$$$ hifi system , you wont notice the diff from one TT to the next .
CD players are much better bang per buck. A $300 CD player will allways outperform a $300 TT .

 

Even if you buy a killer system , and I mean spend $5k + , you have the issue of records .
The quality of most records is CRAP. Thats why I sold my Rega3 TT years ago.
The more you spend on the TT ,the more you notice the limitations of the records .
Clicks, pops, warpage, skiping .
Get someone who's a bit rough using it, then its $50+ on a replacement stylus .(at the cheap end of things)

 

Records & TT's have issues that will allways be there, its 100 year old tech .
Please, dont waste your $500+ on a TT if you are going to run it through a very average amp & speakers .
Its just a fad for many .

 

btw , Ive downgraded to a 30year old Pioneer TT . Its no worse than the quality of my record's pressings 
:-)

 

 


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