Turntable Bookshelf System Recommendation - AVS Forum | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #1 of 8 Old 10-10-2014, 06:07 AM - Thread Starter
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Turntable Bookshelf System Recommendation

My Mom is buying a turntable setup for my Dad's birthday and has asked for my help. She's dead set on the U-Turn Orbit Plus Turntable because my Dad fell in love with mine during his last visit to my house. So, the turntable choice is set.

His setup will be nowhere near his dedicated TV/AVR/Speakers so they want a separate "bookshelf" setup: Turntable and dedicated speakers in the living room. The setup should have a relatively small footprint (i.e. No big black AVRs)

Her budget is no more than $1K.

Which of these 2 setups are better? She's already signed off on Setup #2 below, but a little more research yielded Setup #1 (and it's cheaper). I'm pretty stumped as this is outside my expertise (obviously). Any advice is GREATLY appreciated!

Setup #1 $774
  • U-Turn Turntable: $299
  • Emotiva Phono Preamp: $129
  • Emotiva mini-X a-100: $219
  • Pioneer SP-BS22 Speakers (Andrew Jones Designed): $127

OR

Setup #2 $927
  • U-Turn Turntable: $299
  • Emotiva Phono Preamp: $129
  • Emotiva Airmotiv 6s Powered Speakers (Pair): $499

Thanks again for any help!

Last edited by analogBalrog; 10-10-2014 at 07:13 AM.
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post #2 of 8 Old 10-10-2014, 07:00 AM
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The most important component is speakers. Don't cheap out on them.

I personally think Emotiva is overpriced for what you get. I would go with something like an Onkyo TX-8020 stereo receiver and a better pair of speakers, maybe something by PSB or Paradigm.

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

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post #3 of 8 Old 10-10-2014, 07:08 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mcnarus View Post
The most important component is speakers. Don't cheap out on them.

I personally think Emotiva is overpriced for what you get. I would go with something like an Onkyo TX-8020 stereo receiver and a better pair of speakers, maybe something by PSB or Paradigm.
Thanks for the reply.

The idea here was either to get an AMP + Passive Speakers, or to get Active Powered Speakers alone.

I've read that the Pioneers I listed above are quite great. And in the world of Active Powered Speakers, the Emotiva's I listed are good too. Anyways, I appreciate the feedback!
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post #4 of 8 Old 10-10-2014, 07:12 AM - Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by mcnarus View Post
The most important component is speakers. Don't cheap out on them.

I personally think Emotiva is overpriced for what you get. I would go with something like an Onkyo TX-8020 stereo receiver and a better pair of speakers, maybe something by PSB or Paradigm.
Also, the idea behind the Emotiva Mini amp was to keep things small. I should have mentioned that in my original post. Basically, they do not have room for a big AVR on the bookshelf, which is why I'm looking at powered speakers or a small amp like the Emotiva Mini.
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post #5 of 8 Old 10-10-2014, 07:31 AM
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In that case, the mini-X makes sense. You could save a little money on the phono stage by going to www.phonopreamps.com. The bookshelf speakers I'd recommend are the Infinity P163s.

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

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post #6 of 8 Old 10-10-2014, 08:08 AM
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Originally Posted by analogBalrog View Post




Setup #2 $927
  • U-Turn Turntable: $299
  • Emotiva Phono Preamp: $129
  • Emotiva Airmotiv 6s Powered Speakers (Pair): $499
I'd definitely go with Setup #2 . IMHO, the Airmotiv 6s will outperform the Pioneers (I have the Airmotiv 4s and a pair of the Pioneers and I prefer the Airmotivs for an overall cleaner and engaging sound - and the 6s will be even more dynamic). The Pioneers are a great speaker at that price, but for me, they are not as good as the Airmotivs.

The only thing I would add is a volume control like the Control Freak from Emotiva (there are others available). It will make life easier when needing volume changes with powered monitors.

As mentioned already, whatever you decide, I would definitely spend the biggest chunk of change on speakers - they will have the largest effect on the overall sound of the system.
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post #7 of 8 Old 10-10-2014, 08:40 AM - Thread Starter
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Mcnarus and FLCanuck, thank you both for your input. Super helpful!

FLCanuck, I will definitely add the Control Freak to the chain in Setup #2 , which now would look like this:

U-Turn Orbit Plus Turntable >> Emotiva Phono Preamp >> Emotiva Control Freak >> Emotiva Airomotiv 6s

I think that my Dad would like the simplicity of this setup for enjoying records in his living room. I also think he'll like sticking to 2 brands (U-Turn and Emotiva), so Setup #2 is looking like a winner.

Thanks again for the great advice!
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post #8 of 8 Old 10-11-2014, 11:42 AM
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Originally Posted by analogBalrog View Post
Mcnarus and FLCanuck, thank you both for your input. Super helpful!

FLCanuck, I will definitely add the Control Freak to the chain in Setup #2 , which now would look like this:

U-Turn Orbit Plus Turntable >> Emotiva Phono Preamp >> Emotiva Control Freak >> Emotiva Airomotiv 6s

I think that my Dad would like the simplicity of this setup for enjoying records in his living room. I also think he'll like sticking to 2 brands (U-Turn and Emotiva), so Setup #2 is looking like a winner.

Thanks again for the great advice!
That should be quite a nice system for vinyl playback.

Once you get it set-up, let us know what you and your Dad think.
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