New user + beginner sound system questions! [Archive] - Audio & Video Forums


View Full Version : New user + beginner sound system questions!

03-16-2009, 03:14 PM
Hey there I'm new to the forum and also kind of new to the advanced audio thing too. What I'm trying to do is set up a record player with a decent enough system to really be able to tell the difference between playing my tunes off my (somewhat decent) computer speakers and really hearing the quality of my vinyls. I dont have a huge budget, so nothing crazy. Also I don't really know a lot of what goes into hooking up a system. I'm pretty technically inclined, but lack the knowledge/experience. Is it important for the record player itself to be top quality? or is it mainly the speaker system? Also would I be hooking the player up to a receiver and then the speakers play through the receiver? This is really where I am in the dark.

I would be looking to see how much of this I could find used on craigslist or otherwise to save money, so keep that in mind with recommendations.

Thanks in advance,

The Kaiser

Mr Peabody
03-16-2009, 03:32 PM
Welcome to AR.

Look your sound is going to be limited no matter what you do by using your computer and it's speakers as your system. The easiest and least expensive option would be to get a USB turntable. You can find many options on You are looking at $150.00 or less. You want to be sure the turntable has a magnetic cartridge, if it talks about a phono preamp then it does. You can always upgrade the cartridge a bit for better sound.

I bought a Numark for like $130.00. You can also make mp3 or CD's with these turntables. They come with software.

This isn't going to sound as good as a Rega or ProJect entry level table at $300.00 but they will require more equipment and as I first stated you are already limited by what you will play it through.

03-16-2009, 03:37 PM
Yes I had seen that Numark you mentioned - but in terms of speakers etc... would it pay to get some nice speakers and maybe a subwoofer to bring out the sound? and what wqould you recommend? Ditto for a receiver.

03-16-2009, 03:48 PM
Sorry to double post, but I stumbled upon a set on craigslist and wanted to run in by someone.
Onkyo receiver Dolby Pro-Logic Sound, model #TXSV 545, includes remote. One pr KLH speakers, 23"H, model #317. One pr OHM E speakers, 21"H. Cambridge Soundworks center channel Plus II speaker. Cambridge Soundworks subwoofer base cube 10". Manuals included. Mint condition.

This is listed for $200. Deal or no deal?

Mr Peabody
03-16-2009, 06:17 PM
Normally I'd say stay away from the surround sound receivers if you just want to play stereo but that looks like a good deal. You'll have to check to see if that model offers a phono input for the turntable. If not, you'll be spending money for a phono preamp. Well, I believe there is an Audio Technika turntable for around $170.00 that has the built in preamp. For good LP playback and getting a separate system it's worth the money getting a better table than one of those USB kind.

Another way to go is to look on Craigslist for an older receiver that would be stereo and include the phono stage. Sometimes you can find a Pioneer or Technics for $50.00 give or take. Occasionally you can even find a turntable.

For people who really want better than average, or better than the turntable sound of the day, I recommend three entry tables that all run about $299.00 including a cartridge. Rega, whom I am partial to, ProJect and Music Hall all start at this point.

There are so many ways you can go, it depends on how good you want the playback to sound and how much you are willing to spend.

For fun look at and see how crazy one can go with turntables and cartridges.

03-17-2009, 09:40 AM
My $.02 would be to find a higher quality "used" turntable (Rega, Musichall, etc.) with a good cartridge. I only say that because my last two CD players (Marantz DV-6400 and SA-8001) absolutely embarass my Technics tt with a Sumiko Blue point Cartridge.
If you want to hear the quality of vinyl, you really need to move up the tt ladder a few steps. I'd hate for you to spend $150 on a tt and feel like you were cheated.
Good luck!

03-17-2009, 05:33 PM
It looks like it does have a phono input so I'm going to go ahead and pick up that tomorrow. For the turntable - I was looking at the ProJect debut III ($349 US). Would that set up work pretty decently? (See above for receiver + speaker details). Also I have hear that wiring/cables can make a big difference is that true? Thanks!

Mr Peabody
03-17-2009, 06:42 PM
I think that would be a nice starter system. Cables can make a difference but how much depends on the systems resolution or capability to allow you to hear how much difference. The KLH are alright to start with but they aren't going to be very detailed. I like Onkyo receivers they have a strong amp section.

I recommend Blue Jeans cables as a good starting point in cables. You can see my "impressions" under the "Cables" forums. BJC are not expensive and do very well.