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RIAA Preamps still needed?

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RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby twotoedsloth » Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:51 pm

Hello,

Sorry for my inexperience, but at work a visiting scholar is requesting a turntable for his guest lecture, so I'm going to have to rent one.

Can anyone please tell me if we will still need an RIAA preamp? I know this was critical in the past, but I honestly have not used a turntable.

Your advice is greatly appreciated.

Peter
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Wonks » Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:04 pm

Normally, yes. A cheap turntable with a USB output won't, but anything of any reasonabke quality will almost always expect to be used with an amp either with an internal RIAA preamp, or an external unit. And it will also need to match the cartridge type; moving magnet or moving coil.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby twotoedsloth » Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:41 pm

Thanks Wonks.

So a USB output usually won't need an RIAA preamp?

I'm hesitant to invest too much time and money into what is essentially going to be show and tell for stuffy academics and musicologists.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:53 pm

I hate to say it but the most likely 'professional' solution is a DJ turntable and mixer. It won't satisfy a 'HiFi' buff but has a decent chance of being reliable and interfacing appropriately with the PA system (I know that's not a given but talk to the hire company techies and they should steer you safely through).
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Tim Gillett » Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:54 pm

twotoedsloth wrote:Thanks Wonks.

So a USB output usually won't need an RIAA preamp?

Correct, it should already do the RIAA EQ itself.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Sam Spoons » Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:05 pm

You could probably buy a USB deck for what it would cost to hire a small DJ rig but they are not built for a real live environment. If it's as you describe though it may well be a practical option. I guess it's a judgment call based on the nature of the event........
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby DGL. » Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:32 pm

I suppose the other option is to find an old Hi-Fi cheap either via ebay or charity shops, something lower end from one of the Japanese manufacturers should be good enough for most uses, esp. in a less then ideal listening environment, and should be fairly kind on the records (in comparison to most cheap modern turntables).

In theory so long as it's got a magnetic cartridge, it's a decent brand and it some way of adjusting the speed (to ensure it's running at the right speed in each speed setting) it should be fine.
Also get a system with either a tape or aux out (or even at a pinch use the H/P out) and an extra RIAA pre-amp is not needed as there will be one already in the Hi-Fi system.

Even one of the "fake separates" systems should be acceptable for most uses.

Plus when you are done with it you can either keep it just in case or sell it on.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby ef37a » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:25 am

Yes, go for a "DJ" rig with a fairly rugged magnetic cartridge of medium compliance or one of the USB units.

I have just acquired a Rega Planar turntable and arm with an Ortofon cartridge. I had forgotten how very delicate these things are!

Why couldn't the guy have got his stuff duped onto cassette, MDisc or 'puter?!

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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Mike Stranks » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:12 am

Many turntables these days - irrespective of USB connectivity - have a built-in RIAA preamp so you can connect direct to a standard line input.

But as Dave says, it does seem a strange request. Not sure that I'd want my vinyl tracked by any old stylus at any old tracking-weight. Each to their own...
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:39 am

Just what I was thinking, I assumed the 'client' was not precious of his vinyl and was using it more for effect than reproduction.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Humble Bee » Thu Feb 07, 2019 11:52 am

I would need one of those... Can somebody recommend one not too expensive?

Cheers! :thumbup:
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:43 pm

I'm amazed there isn't an RIAA eq plug-in available (or is there)?
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Wonks » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:00 pm

There are, but if it's going straight into a PA or mixer, then a plug-in won't be much use.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Sam Spoons » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:06 pm

True, I was assuming HB wanted it for transfer or sampling.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Wonks » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:12 pm

I was thinking of the OP. But software could be viable for HB.
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Humble Bee » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:18 pm

Thanks folks.

Just one that outputs line level on jacks or rcf...

Ive seen some cheap ones (£30 ish) but im not sure its worth it.

Local hifi shop prices start at about £150 and thats too much at the moment...

I am landing a pro-ject turntable on sunday...

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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Wonks » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:29 pm

The RIAA circuitry is fairly simple, so it's more down to the pre-amp bit, and it's not that hard to make a good clean pre-amp these days.

Project do their own pre-amp for MM cartridges for about £50 (they also do more expensive ones that also work with MC cartridges).

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Pro-Ject-Audio-Systems-Phono-Preamplifier/dp/B01NCVTR7V/ref=pd_sbs_23_6?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B01NCVTR7V&pd_rd_r=597533e6-2ad3-11e9-a1a1-4f2cd90424c2&pd_rd_w=ritng&pd_rd_wg=KND5G&pf_rd_p=18edf98b-139a-41ee-bb40-d725dd59d1d3&pf_rd_r=A4CZF2CYMGP5Z4NSEQF1&psc=1&refRID=A4CZF2CYMGP5Z4NSEQF1
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Wonks » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:32 pm

ART also make a pre-amp with more controls that can be obtained for a similar price.

http://www.artproaudio.com/product/djpre-ii-phono-preamplifier/
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Mike Stranks » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:33 pm

This https://www.richersounds.com/hi-fi/audio-technica-lp60usb-silver.html any good?

Has USB and direct to line (on-board RIAA) outputs...

Also available in black...
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Re: RIAA Preamps still needed?

Postby Wonks » Thu Feb 07, 2019 1:51 pm

I think TTS needs to tell us more about the type of lecture and as to why a turntable is needed. If it's some old and rare pressing that needs to be played on the highest quality/least damaging player, or just to show the problems associated with vinyl for those who've never heard it e.g. rumble, hiss, pops, scratches and jumping?

If it's for a DJ type demonstration, then they'll need a direct drive, not belt drive, turntable.
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