Insanity? A Dive Back Into Analog

MikeT.

Senior Member
I’ve “exited analog” three times now BUT a couple of hundred albums still remained in my listening room. They were constantly whispering, planting the seed in my mind - surely an audiophile MUST have a turntable, an audiophile MUST have a turntable. ;)

Soooooo, I didn’t dive head first back into the pool, spending a large sum of money on a table that could be the fourth victim of my misguided belief- an audiophile MUST have a turntable. As any good audiophile would do, I’ve been obsessing over what to do, what to do.

At the pinnacle of my analog journey, my SOTA Satellite with Jelco arm sat too much, not earning its keep. I‘ve owned Pro-Ject tables in the past but have not been terribly impressed with their tonearms or sound quality.

A Rega RP-3 made its home here for a while but the frustration of tweaks and tweaking finally got to me, but I really loved the quality and technology of their tonearms. I’ve searched and searched for a detailed explanation of their “double-brace” technology, which truth-be-told I’ve never understood nor drank that flavor of kool-aid.

It dawned on me, finally, the newer Rega Planar 2 could be a very good solution. No double-brace, just a really fine tonearm that many manufacturers use as OEM, SOTA among them. Good enough, I believe, to upgrade at some future date to a Rega Ania MC Kind of a “set-and-forget“ type of system. Maybe I’m kidding myself again, maybe I’ll get back on that analog treadmill but at least the crazy whispering will stop. I miss the ritual of playing an album PLUS I found a really good deal on a demo unit. It should be here early next week.

What did I expect? I’m an audiophile dammit! :smoke
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Nice. I just received the huge color catalog for MusicDirect - and went through all the pages on speakers, tables etc. They have lots of Regas - really great looking stuff.

I was cracking up at the SME page - they show a wild and crazy looking full SME deck - and below it - shows the price of 6 or 8K - then I realized I was looking at the wrong table for that price - the SME table I was looking at was in the 30K price range and the 6-8K was a real dog (huge let down from the looks dept.)

Your P2 should be pretty cool. I've always wanted to hear one(Rega).
 

Dan

Peanut Head
My Sota came with a basic Rega arm...but I later upgraded it to a Moth/Rega RB-303 with a counterslung weight and improved wiring.
Best choice I ever made. Rega makes great arms!
 

Wntrmute2

Not So Mediocre Member
As much as I love my multiple vinyl rigs and my record collection, there is no way I would start from scratch at this point! Do the Hi-rez/streaming thing and let the idea die. Decent used vinyl is increasingly hard to find and the new stuff is pretty pricey as well.
 

MikeO

Active Member
I recently purchased a turntable again after a couple of years of strictly streaming. I have placed constraints on myself to try and prevent the obsessive side of vinyl from popping up again. Hopefully I will be able to stick with them. First of all no internet buying. Broke it once but it was a local seller and I could have picked it up but felt shipping was just easier. I want to physically go to the used record stores or local sales. Second, not going to look at expensive records much. Really trying to limit myself as much as possible to under $20 purchases. Lots of great jazz reissues for fairly cheap. No audiophile pressings or highly collectible albums. Three, manual cleaning. I am trying not to buy a vacuum machine even though I really like the speed in which they clean records. Bought the one step Mofi solution and a goat hair brush. Cleaning takes a bit of time, but in my case that is probably a positive. Hope my resolve not to obsess will be strong.
 

Audionut

Next Round Is On Me
You are super cray’ but everyone here has to be. You kept the records for good reason; you weren’t able to let go just yet.....That being said keep it simple, we started this journey for the same reason; to enjoy the music. Enjoy in good health! :)
 

MikeT.

Senior Member
The Rega Carbon cartridge is decent for an entry level cart. Decent bass, maybe a tad exaggerated at times. Mids are a bit forward but with pretty fair detail and highs are can be a little “over the top” occasionally. Not bad for a $65 retail cartridge, I think it’s a rebadged AT3600L.

I put out a feeler for a lightly used Rega Elys and came up with a really good deal, so I bought it. And so it begins........but I’m fairly sure that I won’t go “there” :rolleyes:
 

MikeT.

Senior Member
The Rega Elys is way underrated, IMO. And I don’t even have it mounted with the third bolt yet, it’s on the way. And I am using a Schiit Mani, why you ask? It’s the only inexpensive phono preamp I could find that provided an option for just 30dB of gain. I preferred it over others in the HFH shootout of while back.

The Rogue Sphinx V2 has a particularly sensitive input and the Rega is a high output Moving Magnet. I did NOT want to use Rothwell attenuators so the lower gain option of the Mani seemed a good route.

This may be a bold statement, but based on my experience so far, I would have happily paid retail ($295) for the Elys. I put it in a category similar to the Denon DL103. Cymbals shimmer, but are not splashy or overly detailed. Percussion, in general, is very good. Mids and vocals - check! Woodwinds, sax in particular, are realistic - check! Fiddles - very good. Guitar is wonderful. Bass is realistic - check! Piano, wonderful - check!

Rega uses their own cartridge alignment scheme (of course they do), more similar to the Stevenson alignment Than to the Baerwald. I wonder if this could be a factor in some of the dissatisfaction with Rega carts.

I’m really enjoying my Planar 2 with Elys, much more so than the P3 with all the tweaks and such. Given the time I spend with my records, this has been a good choice.
 

MikeT.

Senior Member
It’s the proper three-point installation of the Rega Elys, tracking at 1.8 grams. It’s still performing well above its price and reputation IMO.
Now playing: Bernie Krause - Citadels of Mystery - Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab


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MikeT.

Senior Member
My Sota came with a basic Rega arm...but I later upgraded it to a Moth/Rega RB-303 with a counterslung weight and improved wiring.
Best choice I ever made. Rega makes great arms!
I performed a basic “knuckle knock” test, a decent rap on the buffet top I’m using as a system rack, last night and nothing made if from through to the cartridge. I gather the plinth and isolating feet are doing a good job. An upgrade path might well include a step-up Rega arm and maybe a Herbie’s mat at some point.
 
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