Looking for help with turntable - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 7 Old 12-31-2012, 10:43 PM - Thread Starter
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Hello and thanks for looking! I'm new to turntables/vinyl and wanted some advice on how to get the best audio quality on a budget. I picked up the Pyle PL-TTB1 about a week ago at a pawn shop in town for $50.

I was wondering if I should spend money on a cartridge/stylus or any calibration tools to make sure everything is aligned properly. The turntable plays most records fine but some skip in a few places and that's what makes me think I should replace/calibrate its parts.

As I've stated I'm very very new to this so I've tried to do some research but am not entirely sure of what to look for. If someone could help and point me in the right direction it would be greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance for the help!

Brendon
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post #2 of 7 Old 12-31-2012, 10:56 PM
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Check the tracking force (VTF) and anti-skate settings. If either of those is set incorrectly then you could easily get skips, and might even be damaging your LPs. A damaged stylus (needle) could also cause this, but check the VTF and anti-skate first.

Which cartridge is currently installed in your PL-TTB1?
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post #3 of 7 Old 01-02-2013, 02:43 AM - Thread Starter
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First off, thanks for the help and sorry for the slow response!

After closer examination it appears that the LPs I was having problems with are slightly warped. I picked the majority of them up on the cheap just to have a large collection at first.

I have no clue how to check but here's a few pictures and hopefully you will be able to tell.

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B0N-itkSv_FdQ19zcHRWS3Y3RWc
https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B0N-itkSv_FdbVhlcXEwM2RzeGM
https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B0N-itkSv_FdemlWczRQdUE4c0k
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post #4 of 7 Old 01-02-2013, 06:21 AM
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A new stylus certainly won't hurt, but don't go nuts. Budget should be in the $50 range, something like an Ortofon OM 5E. You may get slightly better performance with a nicer stylus than that, but if you're ready to spend $100 for a cart, you're much better off upgrading to a nicer TT. You can get some fantastic deals on older equipment that blows the doors off today's new stuff, but you have to know what you're looking at and be comfortable with tinkering.

A disc cleaning system is also a good idea, especially since you're buying used. Will help with both tracking and sound quality.

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post #5 of 7 Old 01-02-2013, 05:08 PM
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Your cartridge looks like the same one used on Ion turntables. Ion labels the cartridge as an "ICT04", but the same cartridge is I believe used by many others under different names and model numbers. It's an extreme budget cartridge -- at maybe the $15 level. It should work fine, though. If you want something better then I'd suggest an Audio Technica AT95E, which can be found for $50 or less.
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post #6 of 7 Old 01-03-2013, 10:32 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by skriefal View Post

Your cartridge looks like the same one used on Ion turntables. Ion labels the cartridge as an "ICT04", but the same cartridge is I believe used by many others under different names and model numbers. It's an extreme budget cartridge -- at maybe the $15 level. It should work fine, though. If you want something better then I'd suggest an Audio Technica AT95E, which can be found for $50 or less.

Thanks for the advice! I ordered a AT95E from amazon for just over $40 along with a alignment protractor to make sure I put the cartridge in the correct location. I can't wait for them to show up!
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post #7 of 7 Old 01-07-2013, 10:30 AM
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The arm bearings may be in poor condition; everything in that turntable is very low quality.

Another issue is tracking force.

Many people try to track as light as possible, thinking this will save the records from wear; the opposite is true.

Most record wear and damage is caused by MISTRACKING, which is often due to setting the tracking too light.

I suggest that you consider getting the PRO-JECT Essential turntable, which runs around $300.
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