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Low Budget Vinyl Source - Page 6

post #76 of 187
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SemiAudiophile View Post
Ortofon FF15XE MkII already installed. and i had no problems with it while setting the force to about 1.5g. the cartridge was just old and sounded pretty bland that's why i decided to upgrade. but, oh well.
The FF15XE is a basic eliptical stylus from back in the '70s which was pretty decent. they have original replacements here in case you wanted to get a new one. Ortofon at www.stereoneedles.com : Stylus 5E,Stylus 10,Stylus 15,Stylus 20,Stylus 30,Stylus 40,Stylus Pro,Stylus D5E MKII,Stylus D10E MKII,Stylus D20E MKII,Stylus D30 MKII,Stylus N15E MKII,Stylus NF15E MKII,NF15XE MKII,Stylus DN150E,Stylus DN155E,Sty

But the AT440 you have has a superior Fineline stylus, like the VMS30 in that Ortofon list which is just that bit harder to align. Once you get it right though it should be very quiet and the most detailed type of stylus available.

Start with getting the table levelled. Turntable Basics. Turntable Belts, Parts and Accessories. sell a good miniture spirit level, although you will probably find one these cheaper in a model shop if there is one nearby. BTW they also sell a good alignment protractor which is mirrored and makes this a much really simpler task.

If the table isn't perfectly level your adjustments to the tonearm won't be effective as it's also got to work against gravity remember.

Also when you line up the cart the stylus tip's got to be on the exact spot indicated on the protractor as well as having the cantilever parallel to the lines otherwise the overhang distance is wrong.

when you are happy with this then you zero balance the arm with the antiskate also set to 0 and then dial in the downforce to the max recommended.
Then set the antiskate by increasing it gradually until the cart will rise and fall into the same groove when with cued with the lever.
post #77 of 187
thanks for the great advice memepool. i finally received the tracking force gauge the other day and it turns out that i was applying too much force. i didn't know what you mean by zero balancing the arm until i read the manual very closely. i think i finally have the force set right. i don't hear that scratching anymore and its been pretty quiet so far except for a little static but that's probably just dust. the shure sfg-2 is a great tool and its a necessity for tables without built-in gauges. the sound is pretty good, though i'm a little disappointed because i thought it would sound a whole lot better than my old usb recordable turntable. i do hear a noticeable difference though. i'm gonna get the level and the record cleaning brush later to see if that makes any difference.
post #78 of 187
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SemiAudiophile View Post
the sound is pretty good, though i'm a little disappointed because i thought it would sound a whole lot better than my old usb recordable turntable.
It should sound much better than one of those, especiallly with the AT440 on it!

The best thing you can do is keep patiently working at it. A lot of the sound quality of a turntable is dependant on careful set-up and tweaks that you'll learn as you go along, as you are discovering.

I would definitey look at where it's sited next. The best place is on a solid but lightweight wallshelf on it's own. Once you get your spirit level and get the deck nicely isolated from it's surroundings it should sound a lot better.
Vibration damping feet made of sorbothane are another good tweak.

This may all sound a bit audiofoolish but remember it's basically a mechanical device for measuring tiny vibrations carved into a bit of plastic so how well it works is very dependant on getting the geometry and siting optimised.

Changing the oil in the spindle shaft with sewing machine oil, cleaning the belt path with isopropyl alcohol and changing the belt, changing the mat the record sits on with a cheap cork one off ebay...etc will all improve the sound incrementally. Again turntablebasics carries all these sorts of bits and pieces.

Cleaning your records with a vacuum cleaning machine will also be a big step up especially for older records. KABUSA have a basic version of the Nitty Gritty machine for around 150 USD which plugs into a standard vacuum cleaner hose. This is a lot of money for something which is so simple, but it really makes a massive difference, and also means you can buy bargain basement records which look dirty, and so get passed up by people without a cleaning machine, so they pay for themselves pretty quick.
post #79 of 187
Hi everyone.
I came across this forum while searching info about a Toshiba SR-F530 turntable.
My father-in-law gave me this old turntable last sunday, so I could finaly listen to the Black Sabbath record my girlfriend bought in Prague last year...
But I still need to buy a phono-amp to make the thing work, so I would like to know if that turntable is worth buying such an amp (and maybe a new needle).
Any info about the Toshiba SR-F530 would be very welcome.

Some pictures:







[img]http://i558.photobucket.com/albums/ss22/sslbkevin/Toshiba%20SR-F530/IMG_0792-1.jpg[img]

post #80 of 187
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinJ View Post
Any info about the Toshiba SR-F530 would be very welcome.
Hi

that's a nice solidly built Japanese direct drive table which should sound very good with a new cart and a careful set-up.

This was fairly close to the top of the Toshiba range from 1980, described by Hi-Fi Choice Magazine at the time as being well made and sounding "above average" which is pretty high praise for them in a sort of '70s British way

It then cost UKP120 which was a fair amount. To given you an idea the equivalent Technics fully automatic direct drive the SL1700II, cost 190UKP. To put this into context a Rega P(lannar) 2 then would have cost 99 quid, a Thorens TD160BC cost 109 and a Linn Sondek 294. So in todays terms therefore you are looking at turntables costing between 500-1000USD. But they don't even make automatic decks like this today, the closest thing now available being a Technics.

The main place the design is dated compared to a more recent one is in respect of the tonearm. HFC say it's "average" which is what they also say about the Technics tonearm that is the same one found today on the SL1200II, so it's well engineered and executed like all similar Japanese designs of the period but surpased by later ones like the Rega RB250/300.

It's also higher mass than most modern tonearms but not too much so at around 14gms. HFC say it's a little noisy on audition with a low output moving coil cart so the wiring probably isn't the best, another area things have improved. That said there is no reason why a High Output Moving Coil shouldn't be suitable, so look no further than a Denon DL110 for a replacement cart, yours for just over 100USD, which is a perfect match and will really make it sing.

HFC were very impressed by the motor section which is a Toshiba design apparently, so should be rock solid and as long as the strobe looks steady then there shouldn't be any problems here. If it hasn't been used in a while maybe leave it on for a few days to blow out the cobwebs and have a listen for any untoward noises coming from the motor or bearing. A more likely source of faults though is in the automatic features although the number of switches on it suggests manual overide should be available.

Apparently it also has sprung feet which is a nice touch, so make sure you level it with a spirit level and try to put it on a good solid surface preferabley on it's own shelf or on a table on a concrete floor.

For a phonostage look for a Cambridge Audio 640P or else a vintage amp/reciever is always a good first step although not as nice sounding.
post #81 of 187
Woow, thanks for all that great info.
From what you wrote, I think I can be very happy with this turntable.
I'm going to buy a phonostage first. Maybe the NAD PP2 or a similar one from Pro-ject (there's a shop right around the corner that sells both of them)
I'll see what the installed needle sound like before buying a Denon one.
But I'm still not sure what that strobe is for...or what the wheel underneath that thing is for.... Yes, I'm completely new to turntables...

Anyways, thanks alot for the info!!!
post #82 of 187
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinJ View Post
Maybe the NAD PP2 or a similar one from Pro-ject (there's a shop right around the corner that sells both of them)
I'll see what the installed needle sound like before buying a Denon one.
But I'm still not sure what that strobe is for...or what the wheel underneath that thing is for....
Either of those phonostages is perfectly fine. I would recommend you buy at least a new stylus though before playing anything you care about on there as an old worn one will damage your records.
The one on there looks a lot like an Audio Technica but the pic a little blurred, is there any writing on it? An AT95E, AT110E or AT440MLA would all be good choices for that arm as well and cheaper than a Denon DL110.
The wheel underneath is a fine speed control. You set the speed to 45 or 33 (it usually says on the record) and then watch the dots on the strobe, and adjust the fine control until one row stops moving, you'll soon get the hang of it when you see it in action.
post #83 of 187
I cannot recomend the Cambridge Audio 640p enough, I have slightly modified the MC signal path and case but it is mint straight out the box!



Gives the Linto a run for its money!
post #84 of 187
Quote:
Originally Posted by mark_h View Post
I cannot recomend the Cambridge Audio 640p enough... Gives the Linto a run for its money!
Really - that's quite a statement. I should look around at the local shops and see if I can hear it in action...
post #85 of 187
I installed the NAD PP2 yesterday, and played the Black sabbath record for the first time.
It played, but not very nice. It all sounded a little dull, with a lack of high tones. So I guess a new cartridge could be the solution. Unless it's the record (made in the 70's) that is the one to blame.
So, I ordered an Iron Maiden best off 80's-90's record that I also have on cd.

Another problem is that there is no indication of any kind on the installed needle/cartridge. No brand name, no model type, nothing.
Guess I'll have to browse the internet for pics of all available cartridges, and just compare those with the one fitted on the toshiba.

Oh well, at least I found a new way to fill the day
post #86 of 187
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinJ View Post
It played, but not very nice. It all sounded a little dull, with a lack of high
Yeah you need a new stylus. Playing with an old one risks damage to your records. If the one on there isn't identifiable then get an Audio Technica AT95E which costs around 50USD.
post #87 of 187
Well, I found an old record in the attic... Puccini... Something completely different than Black Sabbath, but that record played just fine. All frequencies were present, simbals, vocals (male and female), flutes, .... Everything was there.
So, I guess that the Black Sabbath record is just poorly recorded.

Now, I also found an old Dual 1237a turntable in the attic. It's built into an old saba ultra hifi center 1100, and has an Audio Technica AT11 fitted.
Is that Dual any good compared to the Toshiba?
I don't know how old that AT cartridge is, but maybe I'll try it on the Toshiba (if thats the best one) and see what the difference would be. If I can find the right tracking force etc for that AT11.
post #88 of 187
I am eyeing the 640p myself. Cant quite decide between the Rega and 640p since both seem to have strong favourable reviews. My onkyo's phono input is a bit noisy so I think the best path for me is to start with a clean sounding phono stage and then getting a new cart.
post #89 of 187
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinJ View Post
Well, I found an old record in the attic... Puccini... Something completely different than Black Sabbath, but that record played just fine. All frequencies were present, simbals, vocals (male and female), flutes, .... Everything was there.
So, I guess that the Black Sabbath record is just poorly recorded.
More likely the Black Sabbath is worn out by being played in the past with a damaged stylus. There are ways to get around this though as you can try different stylus profiles to scan past the damaged areas. Microline stylii like on the AT440MLA can do this in many cases.

I would seriously recomend replacing the stylus / cart on any turntable you find in the loft or get 2nd hand though since as well as being more than likely worn out the rubber in the suspension can have perished and this can do even more damage. When you consider how much records cost these days and how rare some of the old ones can be it's just not worth risking a worn out stylus.

Mr. Stylus

This place in Germany is the only one on the net I can find which actually lists a replacement stylus for your Toshiba. However this assumes it's still got the cart it came with mounted on it which is far from being a forgone conclusion and once you factor in the cost of the replacement 36Euro + shipping you would be much wiser to just buy an AT95E which Lpgear has for 49.95USD right now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by KevinJ View Post
Now, I also found an old Dual 1237a turntable in the attic. It's built into an old saba ultra hifi center 1100, and has an Audio Technica AT11 fitted.
Is that Dual any good compared to the Toshiba?
I don't know how old that AT cartridge is, but maybe I'll try it on the Toshiba (if thats the best one) and see what the difference would be. If I can find the right tracking force etc for that AT11.
Interesting. That Dual is pretty nice too, probably as good as the Toshiba in many respects. The cabinet it's mounted in might not be too great and adversly effect the sound though.

Also the Dual will probably need a new belt and an oil change in the bearing to get the best out of it. If you are handy at DIY you could built it a new plinth as it's quite a good sounding deck if set up right.

Strangely enough the AT-11 that's on there probably isn't well suited as Dual's of this period (1975) usually came with a Shure cart since they generally have a lower mass tonearm. If you want the best cart for the Dual go for a Shure M-97, about 50USD on Amazon. Meantime stick that AT on the Toshiba and get a new stylus for it.

LP Gear: Audio-Technica by cartridge has the full range. I would guess that AT-11 is a straightforward conical tip and AT-11E is eliptical. The EX one might be a more fancy Hyper Elliptical. Ring them up and ask but going by the code numbers that would be my guess.

You should also visit the vinyl engine and download a free alignment protractor to help you fit the cart.
post #90 of 187
Why no models from Denon?
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