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Getting started with vinyl

Harold falcon

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Originally Posted by Jekyll
As a broke-ass student, how much would I have to spend to get a decent setup? I'd be using headphones, so would I just need a turntable and receiver?
That's all that's required, yes. You can get a decent starter turntable for $100. If you buy a used turntable make sure you start with a replacement stylus because you'll have no idea how many hours are on it.
Is buying used a good idea?
Yes. If you have a local record shop you're in luck, because you'll be able to physically inspect the records. Beware ebay, they all lie about the condition.
 

TylerDurden

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Check local thrift stores.....

Last time I went to good will they had 3 turn tables....

1 from the 1950's with built in speakers and a tube amp.
1 from the 1980's
1 from the 1990's

All $20 or less, and they worked.
 

djblisk

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depends on what you want to do with vinyl.
 

JohnnyLaw

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What do you mean by "decent"?

1 - You could go with a vintage turntable from a thrift shop and change the stylus. Cheapest option. Some effort required but if you're lucky you could make a good find.

2 - You could buy a low-end turntable in the $100-200 range. Gemini, Stanton, Numark, Technics, etc.

3 - You could get an entry-level quality turntable. I have a Pro-Ject Debut III and recommend it (I got the Phono SB version with built-in phono pre-amp and speed box - essential for quickly switching between 33 and 45 rpm). This will run you about $400-500.

I went through all of these in that order. The first 2 were OK for awhile but once I finished school, I really wanted to upgrade.
 

JohnnyLaw

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Originally Posted by Jekyll
^ Probably 1 or 2. If the turntable has a pre-amp will I still need a receiver? And what should I look for in a receiver?

You need both a pre-amp and an amp (receiver). Most turntables don't have an integrated pre-amp so you'll need a receiver with a phono input (built-in phono preamp). Almost all vintage receivers have one but it's been omitted in many modern ones for obvious reasons.
 

Mr Herbert

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do technics 1200s make reasonable tables for home audio purposes only?

there are a few failed dream djs around me offloading them for pretty cheap... i like the retro utilitarian look of them.
 

Khayembii Communique

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Depends on what kind of music you're into. I listen to a lot of lo-fi, DIY albums and older stuff, so I've always gravitated towards the older "higher quality" equipment. My dad has a turntable he bought in the 70's for a ton of money and I really enjoy it, along with an amp and some speakers from the same era. Just replaced the stylus and I was set. When it comes to vinyl/cassettes I'm a lo-fi junkie; if I wan't quality I'll listen to my ipod. EDIT: Just wanted to brag about my latest acquisition.
Yes, that is a glow in the dark skull shaped record.
EDIT 2: Sorry about the size.
 

breitlingman

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Best value for turntable IMO for price/performance is to buy a used TT like a Dual from a vintage record shop. There are usually a few of these in bigger cities at least around here. I bought a nice Dual 704 with an older but good-sounding Shure cartridge on it for $100, and it outperformed by Pro-Ject Debut II that i had at the time that came with the lousy Ortofon OM5 cartridge, and that TT cost much more.
 

Artisan Fan

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Three steps to good cheap vinyl sound... Look at the $200 Audio Technica PL-120: http://www.amazon.com/Audio-Technica...9833118&sr=8-1 Add an Ortofon 2M Red Cartridge at $99: http://www.needledoctor.com/Ortofon-...hono-Cartridge Add an Audio Technic phono stage for $44: http://www.needledoctor.com/Brand-St...dio-Technica_3 Then sit back and enjoy the music through existing stereo.
Audiophile advice: Avoid Pro-Ject and Music Hall tables. Just trust me on that. Avoid really cheap cartridges as well.
 

k9n

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This proved helpful for me as well, thanks!
 

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