Audio Advisor Record Doctor III - REVIEWED (56k WARNING)
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Aman

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Hello fellow vinyl listeners! After procrastinating for almost a year, I have finally gotten into the vacuum cleaning machine market and purchased an Audio Advisor Record Doctor III record cleaning machine.



Introductory

The minute I happily received my package at my door, I opened up the box to a very well-packaged unit. Everything came with the machine that was stated - the brush, record cleaning formula (enough for about 40 records, I estimate), the instructions, and the record-turning-cap. All it took was a minute's worth of plugging in and setting up and I was already set to clean my first record!

The Record Doctor III is just an OEM model of the Nitty Gritty record cleaning machines. Audio Advisor (Mathew helped me - a very nice guy) told me that the RDIII is just an Audio-Advisor version of the Nitty Gritty 1.0 - exact same parts, different name. There are more expensive options that allow semi-to-fully automatic operation - semi-automatic being automatic rotation of the record, and fully-automatic being automatic rotation and automatic liquid dispertion. Many people actually prefer to put a little elbow greese into the process of cleaning the records, so they can assure themselves they did an okay job. I think that most people like the Nitty Gritty for two reasons: mainly price, smaller form factor, and the fact that the actual vinyl record never touches a surface which can re-contaminate it (in fact, only the record label touches the unit at all - very well designed!).

The instructions were very easy. Essentially, you place the record on the device, and then the cap on top of that - you put the liquid on and spread evenly. Then you flip the record over and turn on the vacuum, and use the cap to rotate the record about 3-5 times, and then you're immediately all set to play! Again, this is all told in the instructions with a little more detail. However, operation really couldn't be easier for the price that I paid.

Quality of Use

So, as I mentioned before, the first step is to place the record on the device. After it is secured, you add the supplied liquid to the record (they recommend one small line going from the rim of the record to the center (but not on the label, obviously).



After that, you spread the record evenly until the entire record is smooth and wet with the formula.



Next, you flip the record over to vacuum it. Let me tell you, this process is LOUD! The vacuum is not at all soft or gentle - it is quite loud - it's as if you are standing right next to an industrial home vacuum cleaner. But I also felt more confident about this, since it made me feel as if it wasn't missing any spots. In fact, you'll see that the results were visibly (and audibly) better to a very high degree.



After the vacuum cycle is over (only three to five rotations needed), you're ready to play!

Results

Overall, I was awfully surprised by the quality of improvement after using this product only three or four times! My first clean I did, of my copy of "RA" by Utopia, was immensely successful, as I counted the number of annoying pops and ticks before cleaning to be 33 in the first ten minutes - when I went through the WHOLE album after cleaning it, that number went down to 1 (or MAYBE 2)!

When I was finished cleaning the record, I was very excited to play the it. To my surprise, my turntable released a much more clean and detailed sound, and I was actually able to see my cartridge in the reflection of the vinyl! The vinyl was smooth, shiny, and gave off a reflection! Who needs a mirror when I can examine my sexy face through my vinyl collection?
The bellow picture shows my newly-cleaned record gracing my mediocre turntable. This is the first time in a few weeks where I didn't have to pull dust off of my stylus after the end of a listening session!



As mentioned earlier, I can't see anything that the higher-costing units give the user other than convenience. Because of the design of the device, I think it is safe to say that it is user-friendly whether or not you get an automatic one, but since I only intend on cleaning records when I actually want to PLAY them, the need for an automatic device was not as large as others (who want to clean all of their records at the same time). I have a LOT of vinyl, and have only cleaned about 10 since receiving this unit. However, from what I have performed, I can easily say that the unit takes a lot to get overheated. I did three LPs in a row, and it was pleasantly cool (unlike all the horror stories I hear about how it gets warm after a while). The device is also built like a rock - I can't see how it could possibly be subject to repairs on the chasis after only one year, and I certainly can't see the unit malfunctioning in any way. I was told by my very kind Audio Advisor representative that these problems were fixed, and that AA made sure of it before releasing their Record Doctor II machine. Now that they're on their 3rd version, things really can only be better.

One more thing I should recommend to anybody interested in this device, is that you should always put new sleeves on all the records that you clean. Here is a very happy "me" after going through a clean side of Yes - "Close to the Edge".



Conclusions

So, for 250 dollars from Audio Advisor, I got a FANTASTIC record cleaning machine, and two orders of 30 LP sleeves to protect my new clean vinyl. I also got free 3-day FedEx shipping. My experience, from the shopping to the usage of the product, couldn't have been better. If you listen to a lot of vinyl, and feel that your Buggtussel Vinyl Zyme and ordinary manual brush really isn't doing the trick, I HIGHLY suggest you invest in one of these machines. Audio Advisor, to top it all off, is a fantastic company to deal with and they were very helpful in allowing me to buy exactly what I needed, for quite a reasonable price. This seems to be by-far the most cost-effective way to really clean those old vinyl records. I definitely recommend this product to all vinyl listeners out there - it is quite worth the small investment, and it will allow your vinyl collection and your turntable's hardware to last a much longer time.

This product gets an A+ from me!
Enjoy the music!

-Aman
 
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tanfenton

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Nice going on the frosted poly. inner sleeve. It's one of my favorite styles.

I think earplugs must have crossed your mind by now.

NGF
 
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Gopher

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Amen,

I'm glad to see you finally bit on a record cleaning machine! They really are essential to vinyl listening. If you don't mind spending a couple additional dollars on your vinyl cleaning check out the record doctor cleaning brushes (like 15-20 bucks). I was extreemly skeptical at first but they really do aggitate the solution must better and lead to an even thorougher cleaning.
 
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Aman

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Do you think that those record brushes would be more effective than just getting different record cleaning formula?
 
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Gopher

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probably about the same. My first nitty gritty brush was kinda worn when I had gotten it and the difference the brush made was pretty dramatic. You really feel like you're digging deep and dislodging any potential 'ickies'.

That said, I have a whole routine for my vinyl which consists of vinyl zyme then record doctor fluid then groove glide.
 
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britishbane

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Aman you sir have just convinced me to plop down 250 for my very own machine. My wallet just got even more thin and its all your fault.
 
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Aman

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Quote:

Originally Posted by britishbane
Aman you sir have just convinced me to plop down 250 for my very own machine. My wallet just got even more thin and its all your fault.


You'll thank me once you use it!
 
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