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post #1 of 13 Old 07-09-2014, 07:45 PM - Thread Starter
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Question About Turntable Set Up

Hey guys, I have a question about setup.

So I have an Audio Technica AT LP 60. It's the one with the pre-amp inside. I then have the turntable hooked up to a receiver with a phono input (and Martin Logan speakers connected to the receiver).

When I play records on it, it sounds pretty good.

With that said, when I stream music through my computer, I like how I have more control of my volume. It's almost like there are three different ways to control the volume--the volume button on the computer itself, the volume button on the streaming service, and then the volume button on the receiver.

With my current turntable set up, I just have one source for controlling the volume--the receiver. This leads to, as my ears hear it, not as much sound range in the music, and it leads me to have to turn the music volume up to 40-45 to get it to really thump, as compared to around 30-33 when I stream.

So what I'm wondering is...what can I buy to sort of fix this problem? I'm assuming I would need something to connect the turntable into, and then from there, connect whatever that intermediary device is into the receiver.

So, what is that---a phono amplifier? Just an amplifier? Is there something that can work with this particular turntable I have (I assume with whatever I buy, I'd have to turn the amp setting on the turntable off, correct)?

At the end of the day, I'd love to have a device that allows me to control the volume (and maybe even one or two other settings), and then have my receiver allow me to control the volume as well--so I can have much more flexibility over the sound and what source is controlling the sound, like I do with my streaming music.

Thanks guys.
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post #2 of 13 Old 07-09-2014, 09:40 PM
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" have to turn the music volume up to 40-45 to get it to really thump, as compared to around 30-33 when I stream"

How far could you turn it up? 100?

What's the problem here.

"Rediscover your classic 33-1/3 and 45 RPM records on this affordable, fully automatic belt-drive workhorse. With its built-in switchable phono preamp, the AT-LP60 may be connected directly to your computer, home stereo and to other components that have no dedicated turntable input. "


Try plugging into a line input with the preamp in the turntable is switched "on".

Try plugging into the Phono input with the preamp in the turntable switched "off".

See which is better, if there's a difference.


If your only problem is having to adjust the volume between digital and analog sources, I'd say there is not much of a problem. Live with it.

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post #3 of 13 Old 07-09-2014, 09:43 PM
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LPs will usually be lower in volume than other sources. That's just how it is. Turn up the volume knob to compensate. It won't hurt anything to do so.
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post #4 of 13 Old 07-12-2014, 09:51 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PacMan2006 View Post
Hey guys, I have a question about setup.

So I have an Audio Technica AT LP 60. It's the one with the pre-amp inside. I then have the turntable hooked up to a receiver with a phono input (and Martin Logan speakers connected to the receiver).

When I play records on it, it sounds pretty good.

With that said, when I stream music through my computer, I like how I have more control of my volume. It's almost like there are three different ways to control the volume--the volume button on the computer itself, the volume button on the streaming service, and then the volume button on the receiver.

With my current turntable set up, I just have one source for controlling the volume--the receiver. This leads to, as my ears hear it, not as much sound range in the music, and it leads me to have to turn the music volume up to 40-45 to get it to really thump, as compared to around 30-33 when I stream.

So what I'm wondering is...what can I buy to sort of fix this problem? I'm assuming I would need something to connect the turntable into, and then from there, connect whatever that intermediary device is into the receiver.

So, what is that---a phono amplifier? Just an amplifier? Is there something that can work with this particular turntable I have (I assume with whatever I buy, I'd have to turn the amp setting on the turntable off, correct)?

At the end of the day, I'd love to have a device that allows me to control the volume (and maybe even one or two other settings), and then have my receiver allow me to control the volume as well--so I can have much more flexibility over the sound and what source is controlling the sound, like I do with my streaming music.

Thanks guys.



The reason you don't have much "sound range" in the music is because that is a really really cheap turntable with a crummy cartridge and it doesn't sound very good.

Turning up the volume does not improve the poor sound quality; it just makes the crummy sound a bit louder.

If you want much better sound from your records, get a Music Hall MMF-2.2 or Pro-Ject Carbon turntable; the sound quality and dynamics will be 500% better.

The fact that you have to turn it up to a higher setting is just a function of different voltages from different sources. That is why there is a volume control.

That is a non-issue, and there is no "problem" to fix other than the low-quality sound from the low-quality turntable.

It is kind of amazing, to me, that you would have Martin-Logan speakers and not realize that such a cheap turntable is a such a low-quality source.

Get a decent turntable and start to enjoy your records.

Last edited by commsysman; 07-12-2014 at 10:09 AM.
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post #5 of 13 Old 07-12-2014, 11:42 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by commsysman View Post
The reason you don't have much "sound range" in the music is because that is a really really cheap turntable with a crummy cartridge and it doesn't sound very good.

Turning up the volume does not improve the poor sound quality; it just makes the crummy sound a bit louder.

If you want much better sound from your records, get a Music Hall MMF-2.2 or Pro-Ject Carbon turntable; the sound quality and dynamics will be 500% better.

The fact that you have to turn it up to a higher setting is just a function of different voltages from different sources. That is why there is a volume control.

That is a non-issue, and there is no "problem" to fix other than the low-quality sound from the low-quality turntable.

It is kind of amazing, to me, that you would have Martin-Logan speakers and not realize that such a cheap turntable is a such a low-quality source.

Get a decent turntable and start to enjoy your records.
Well, like I said, to me, the turntable I have sounds pretty good. Honestly, it's not like I have three or four turntables sitting next to each other and am comparing them.

I know audiophiles can be a little stuck up when it comes to music, so I never really knew if something like the Music Hall or Project Carbon is truly going to sound significantly better, or if it's like the difference between my current HD TV and 4K--sure it's better, but my current HD signal is great too.

How complex is the set up for the turntables you mentioned? I have a Onkyo receiver with a phono input--is it just a matter of connecting the turntable into a phono terminal on the receiver?
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post #6 of 13 Old 07-12-2014, 11:57 AM
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You don't have to be an audiophile to hear the difference between your turntable and cartridge and a much better one; it is like night and day.

Your comments on the sound you are hearing from it now tell me that. What you have now is really quite low quality, and you obviously hear that. No surprise there.

If you order the turntable with a cartridge, which is the usual way to do it, there is very little or no setup at all.

You just have to remove the packing, put the drive belt and platter in place, and dial the tracking force in with the dial.

Since your receiver already has a phono input, you just hook it up. That's it.

Needle Doctor has the MMF-2.2 for $449 with cartridge included.
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post #7 of 13 Old 07-12-2014, 01:31 PM
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One advantage of upgrading your table is that you will be upgrading your cartridge as well, to something that will treat your records more gently. Even the next step up the the Audio-Technica line, the AT120, would be much better.

For any table that comes with a cartridge, set-up is very easy.

As for how much of an improvement you hear, that's a very personal judgment (and one often colored by the price tags involved).

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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post #8 of 13 Old 07-12-2014, 11:59 PM - Thread Starter
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OK, thanks guys. You've convinced me that it's worth trying out--at least purchasing it from a place that has a good return policy. But you all do make it seem like there's at least a pretty significant difference in audio that I'll be able to hear. Which is exactly what I want, of course.

So from doing a little research, as well as reading comments here, it sounds like I should consider a Music Hall MMF 2.2, a Pro-Ject Carbon Debut, or a Rega RP1.

Which of these do you prefer, and why? Anything in particular that's a known drawback about these?

From also reading online, it seems a lot of people like the Pro-Ject Caron Debut. If you have any familiarity with this one, is there a specific cartridge I would need to buy with it to have improved sound, or does the one that comes with it suffice? I've also heard that the Acrylic platter you can buy significantly cuts down on static (since you're not using the felt mat that comes with the standard metal platter--is that true)?

Thanks!
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post #9 of 13 Old 07-13-2014, 06:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PacMan2006 View Post
OK, thanks guys. You've convinced me that it's worth trying out--at least purchasing it from a place that has a good return policy. But you all do make it seem like there's at least a pretty significant difference in audio that I'll be able to hear. Which is exactly what I want, of course.

So from doing a little research, as well as reading comments here, it sounds like I should consider a Music Hall MMF 2.2, a Pro-Ject Carbon Debut, or a Rega RP1.

Which of these do you prefer, and why? Anything in particular that's a known drawback about these?

From also reading online, it seems a lot of people like the Pro-Ject Caron Debut. If you have any familiarity with this one, is there a specific cartridge I would need to buy with it to have improved sound, or does the one that comes with it suffice? I've also heard that the Acrylic platter you can buy significantly cuts down on static (since you're not using the felt mat that comes with the standard metal platter--is that true)?

Thanks!
All three TT's have their fans. Can't go wrong w/any of them. The one upgrade I would suggest is install an Ortofon 2M Blue MM cart. Gives you excellent top end detail. One of the better carts out there at a reasonable price.
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post #10 of 13 Old 07-13-2014, 12:20 PM
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Those three tables are essentially identical in design. At least two of the three are made in the same factory. Each has fanboys, because people like to plug the products they buy, for the sake of self-validation.

They all come with a decent cartridge, properly set up. Changing cartridges is doable but not quite trivial. If you aren't sure what you're doing, you should get the dealer to mount the cartridge, or live with the stock cartridge. (A decent cartridge properly mounted will sound better than a great cartridge poorly mounted.)

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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post #11 of 13 Old 08-04-2014, 10:19 AM
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Quick question about turntables that a relative asked me. Is it possible to change the l/r wires to a better wire? Some turntable have removable cables but his old Pio doesn't ..thanks in advance

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post #12 of 13 Old 08-04-2014, 12:07 PM
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To the OP, please note, that even if you buy a new TT, there is no guarantee, that you still won't have to adjust the volume knob accordingly. This is just the way TT's work.

To Taxman..
If the TT, does not have removable L&R RCA Phono cables, you will need to open the unit, track down where the existing cables connect, de-solder the joint, then cut up a new pair of L&R RCA Phono cables and re-solder the bare wire to the old connections.

With that said, I'd just leave well-enough alone, as a new pair of L&R RCA Phono cables is unlikely to cause any audible differences.
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post #13 of 13 Old 08-04-2014, 01:48 PM
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Is it possible to change the l/r wires to a better wire?

No. It's possible to change the wires. It's not possible to find anything better, however.

If you can't explain how it works, you can't say it doesn't.—The High-End Creed

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