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Vinyl playback with 'new' Doug Self pre-amplifier

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Vinyl playback with 'new' Doug Self pre-amplifier

Postby Trevor Johnson » Fri Feb 08, 2013 4:49 pm

I still listen to vinyl and occasionally buy some; I also transfer to the digital domain, particularly those recordings not available on CD (mainly classical). I have had a Technics SL1800 from new, now paired with a Goldring G1022 moving magnet cartridge.

However, two things have recently happened. Firstly, I have built the new Doug Self (one of my heroes!) preamplifier (Elektor Apr, Jun, Jul 2012) which as well as having balanced inputs/output also has a very sophisticated phono stage that is gain adjustable and has signal paths for both moving magnet and moving coil cartridges, together with a switchable IEC amendment. I have also inherited a Thorens TD 150 MkII turntable that needs a new tonearm and cartridge.

The questions are: what turntable/tonearm/cartridge combinations are forum users playing their vinyl on and what recommendations have you for a tonearm and cartridge for the Thorens, preferably moving coil (MC), as I want to use my rather expensive and difficult-to-find transistors on the Self phono board in the MC signal path!

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Re: Vinyl playback with 'new' Doug Self pre-amplifier

Postby MarkOne » Fri Feb 08, 2013 5:55 pm

Rega RB250 arm maybe - Seen that combo used on Thornes decks.

Seen some SME bargains on ebay.

Goldring Ortofon and Audio Technica still do MC carts, but I have no idea what is good.

I'm still running my trusty Linn K9 on a Basic arm, and really don't play enough vinyl these days to justify making any changes.
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Re: Vinyl playback with 'new' Doug Self pre-amplifier

Postby TheBev » Sat Feb 09, 2013 10:06 am


If you're looking for an arm the Rega's still seem to be the quality upgrade most decks need. My vinyl listening is on a Rega Planar 3 with it's standard arm which I think is the Rega RB300. Must have bought half a dozen LP's this year already. :)
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Re: Vinyl playback with 'new' Doug Self pre-amplifier

Postby vinyl_junkie » Sat Feb 09, 2013 11:01 am

I use a Technics SL-1210 mk2's with the stock arm and Stanton 681SE's or 681eee
The pre-amp I use is a vintage American disco mixer which is all discrete and runs in Class A
(Bozak CMA 10-2DL)

My friend had some Rega RB-301's mounted on his SL-1200mk2's with some Grado's and it sounded very nice, to me at least.
I also have Grado's but I don't use them any more as they suffer from too much induced hum where's the Stanton's or any other cart I've had for that matter is pretty much silent.

For the Thoren's I'm not sure what arm I'd put and I'm not really familiar with that TT, some one I know uses these arms on his TD-125, it's not the stock 125 arm but it is made by Thorens and with the Stanton 881S or Audio Technica AT-440MLa it sounded fantastic

Carts wise this is really a difficult choice as a lot of what I guess are called budget MM carts now days (100-150 mark?) I find SO damn bright.
I haven't heard a single Ortofon I liked other than the old VMS mk2's after that they started all getting brighter and brighter.
I owned a 2M Blue for some time and I found it horrible, sibilant and bright. One magazine that reviewed it also published the tests they performed and lo and behold the frequency response was tailored to have more highs, it was accented at the top.
An old Shure or Stanton would wipe the floor with it imo unfortunately neither of those brands make anything of quality now days.

I need new carts for my 1210 as I can't be arsed to keep looking for NOS Stanton and keep looking at the AT-440MLa but very undecided.
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Re: Vinyl playback with 'new' Doug Self pre-amplifier

Postby Tony O'Shea » Sun Feb 10, 2013 10:09 am

Turntable - Michell Orbe.
Arm - Roksan Artemis
Cart - Sumiko Open Blue Point Special.
(The Sumiko is connected to a Trichord Dino pre.)

For the Thorens - possibly check out the Rega tonearms. I haven't looked at other carts in a long while as I'm happy with the Sumiko. (The Sumiko is a nice cart but difficult to find and quite fragile.) From what I remember the Lyra Black was nice as well.

Best of luck with your search.
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Re: Vinyl playback with 'new' Doug Self pre-amplifier

Postby Trevor Johnson » Wed Feb 20, 2013 11:12 pm

A big thank you to everyone who responded and thanks for the very useful information.

I am now looking for a Rega 250/300, or later variant, tonearm and probably an Ortofon MC cartridge.

Thanks again

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