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 Post subject: Re: Need upgrade Advice
PostPosted: Wed May 03, 2017 9:28 am 
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Joined: Sun Aug 15, 2010 11:02 am
Posts: 1011
Location: Kingston, ON, CA
naimkid wrote:
I have a very very basic analog set up, and Akai Belt drive turntable Stanton 680 cartridge and Nerve audio phono preamp.

I would like to upgrade, but not sure where to start, up grade pre or the turntable?

My budget is about $1200.00 and I would prefer something pre-owned.


Kal, it sounds like you are at the same place as I was a couple of years ago. I had a basic analog setup (Dual CS-714Q) and wanted to upgrade.

I sold the Dual, and bought a Roksan Xerxes deck that had been re-plinthed and the external power supply rebuilt for $500. I then fitted an RB300 arm with the Incognito rewire, a VPI VTA adjuster sleeve, a 2M Red cart and an Audio Origami SOFC external wire for $700. For $1,200, I was miles ahead of the Dual. Since then I've upgraded the cart to a London Decca Super Gold ($1,000) and added a Michell tecnoweight ($120) to the arm. I may upgrade the tonearm at some point in the future, but for now, I'm more than pleased with the current performance of my deck.

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 Post subject: Re: Need upgrade Advice
PostPosted: Thu May 04, 2017 5:32 pm 
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Posts: 302
Location: Markham, ON, CA
Kal, here is a SUPER deal: http://www.canuckaudiomart.com/details/ ... 7-tonearm/

That gives you almost $900 for a cart and pre. This Grace is a solid performer, mid-mass so it is compatible with a myriad of cartridges. It would work well with a Denon DL-110 and just look for a good MC phono amp....You would have a killer setup, really world-class....If I did not have more decks than space I would buy this one for myself....For a great phono amp I am liking Project tubes...I have an SE 2 and really like it. There is a new DS that has a rheostatic resistance control for low output MC like the Denon which allows you to adjust ohms on the fly instead of using dip switches...a real benefit!

Best Wishes


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 Post subject: Re: Need upgrade Advice
PostPosted: Thu May 04, 2017 6:19 pm 
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Location: Montreal, QC, CA
brownslane wrote:
Kal, here is a SUPER deal: http://www.canuckaudiomart.com/details/ ... 7-tonearm/

That gives you almost $900 for a cart and pre. This Grace is a solid performer, mid-mass so it is compatible with a myriad of cartridges. It would work well with a Denon DL-110 and just look for a good MC phono amp....You would have a killer setup, really world-class....If I did not have more decks than space I would buy this one for myself....For a great phono amp I am liking Project tubes...I have an SE 2 and really like it. There is a new DS that has a rheostatic resistance control for low output MC like the Denon which allows you to adjust ohms on the fly instead of using dip switches...a real benefit!

Best Wishes


Sorry brownslane, but the Grace 707 on that Rega is an ultra-lighteight effective mass tonearm at 7g, which means cartridges with high to very high compliance (in the 25 to 30cu range) which are extremely rare these days compared to 30 years ago when they were still in vogue. The Denon DL-110 which actually test measures (charitably) at 14 -15cu is far too stiff for that arm.


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 Post subject: Re: Need upgrade Advice
PostPosted: Fri May 05, 2017 3:59 am 
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Posts: 4866
Location: Montreal, QC, CA
If it were me I would replace the phono stage first. Again if it were me, I would look for a used Moon LP3 or LP110.

After that I would replace the table and cart, there are some nice choices in this thread.


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 Post subject: Re: Need upgrade Advice
PostPosted: Sun Aug 20, 2017 4:41 pm 
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Joined: Sun Jun 12, 2005 5:57 pm
Posts: 20
Location: Vancouver, BC, CA
In terms of upgrading I would start with your source namely your turntable. If I had $1200 to spend I would purchase an original Roksan Xerexes with a a Rega 300 tonearm. I would probably suggest a Grace F9 cartridge with this set up. A second choice would be a Sota Sapphire turntable again with a Rega 300 arm or similar quality arm. With the Sota you can travel the upgrade route to a certain degree and in my experience it is almost bullet proof in operation. I believe the Roksan is a bit more finicky to set up than the Sota BUT I would have to give it a nod in terms of overall audiophile performance. Can I ask why you do not want to consider Moving Coil Cartridges as an option? As you may have gathered I have had the opportunity to own both of these decks during he course of enjoying this hobby for the past 34+ years.


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