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Old Sep 13, 2005, 03:50 AM   #1
840quadra
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Turntable recommendations to digitize records?

I would like to buy / rent a turntable to digitize some Records (my Mom's). I have a long term project that I would like to complete by Christmas regarding digitizing all of her older records, and putting the recordings onto an iPod nano I plan on giving her for Christmas, along with my iBook G3 600.

I believe the Nano will have enough space for her, and I believe she will be thrilled to receive the combination package of music, nano, and iBook.

I don't need anything "State of the art" because the main computer I am going to use to Record the tracks is going to be my Quadra 840av. The reason being, I like the computer, and it has a really clean DSP that makes really great sounding audio files.

so, if anyone has a suggestion on a brand / model that isn't too expensive I would greatly appreciate it!
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 04:24 AM   #2
DeSnousa
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I have no suggestions, however I would like to say that your mother is going to be so happy to have her old favourite records with her at all times. That's awesome Man I wish I could come up with gift idea's like you
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 06:48 AM   #3
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you should be able to hire a technics 1200 from a local dj store cheaply, then just make sure you get a good cart, oh and remember they are phono level signals not line level
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 11:04 AM   #4
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Even cheap 1200's are costly, so it really depends on how much you're looking into putting into this present.

I did mine with a standard Technics turntable with a diamond-tip needle. The needle itself ran about $100 if I remember correctly. You'll also need a "Y" cable at Radio Shack to plug from the speaker-outputs of the stereo to your Mac. Or, if you don't have a stereo to do that, you can buy a Phono Preamp off ebay for about $10-$20. You connect your turntable to that, then connect your Mac to it and you bypass the need for a stereo. If you don't have an audio-in jack on your Mac, I'd suggest buying a Griffin iMic.

As far as software goes, I really like Final Vinyl. It's easy, has a lot of cool features and best of all: it's free! I've been using Garageband lately because I can also add effects and tweak the song even further if I need to.

That's just how I do it. I'm not an audiophile per-se, but I do have an extensive rare record collection and have been converting my vinyl to digital formats for years. These are just the best methods for me.

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Last edited by narco; Sep 13, 2005 at 11:07 AM.
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 01:27 PM   #5
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I would like to offer some suggestions as well.

Unless you plan on scratching, or dj'ing, a technic 1200 would be overkill to say the least. just get a gemini or stanton turntable, belt drives are cheaper and again, unless you plan on scratching or spinning, belt drive will be fine. A needle is more important. Get a good needle (Shure, Ortofone, Stanton) and most importantly some vinyl cleaner (stanton)

You'll need some kind of Preamp, a cheap Gemini or Stanton mixer should suffice, or a stereo receiver.

I highly recommend using Audio hijack pro as it is very simple and flexible. Also, purchasing Bias Sound soap regular ($99) will be beneficial. This combination of Audio Hijack with Soundsoap as a plug-in is a great way to not only preserve, but improve the sound of the vinyl (espescially if they have been cleaned with the Stanton vinyl cleaner)

That should do it, you're a good son...
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 02:24 PM   #6
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The new Stanton t-80 is a typical turntable with very good mechanical quality, great tonearm, etc. It also includes a built-in line-level output, as well as a digital (sp/dif) output. This will save you the cost of a phono preamp, the ttable itself is much cheaper than a 1200, and you'll be pretty happy with the result. If i'm not mistaken, I believe that it comes with a cartridge and stylus already mounted on the arm, so you don't have to worry about that part of it either.

Frankly, that sounds like the optimal solution for digitizing records. I think the company planned it that way. Best,

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Old Sep 13, 2005, 11:33 PM   #7
840quadra
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Thanks for the suggestions and comments.

I will look into all, and I will be contacting some people on the Quadlist to see if the preamp is needed.

The Quadra 840av has some unique sound circuitry features that no other macs (besides the 660av) came with. It's dedicated AT&T DSP is able to handle multiple types of signals, and various levels and output.

I plan on recording on fusion recorder, an application that can use the DSP. After that I am going to copy the files over to the G5 and use the Bias software that was listed previous to do some cleanup.

I think I have the procedure down, as I have digitized many tapes (both mine and friends) using this setup, and the sound quality is actually quite good.


Thanks again for the quick replies, I will explore all avenues
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 11:34 PM   #8
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i picked up a Numark direct drive TT-200 for doing the same thing. i think i paid about $170.00 for it and another $74.00 for a decent Shure cartridge.

it sounds great and it's such a blast to dig out all the old vinyl.
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Old Sep 13, 2005, 11:37 PM   #9
NicP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by narco
Even cheap 1200's are costly, so it really depends on how much you're looking into putting into this present.

I did mine with a standard Technics turntable with a diamond-tip needle. The needle itself ran about $100 if I remember correctly. You'll also need a "Y" cable at Radio Shack to plug from the speaker-outputs of the stereo to your Mac. Or, if you don't have a stereo to do that, you can buy a Phono Preamp off ebay for about $10-$20. You connect your turntable to that, then connect your Mac to it and you bypass the need for a stereo. If you don't have an audio-in jack on your Mac, I'd suggest buying a Griffin iMic.

As far as software goes, I really like Final Vinyl. It's easy, has a lot of cool features and best of all: it's free! I've been using Garageband lately because I can also add effects and tweak the song even further if I need to.

That's just how I do it. I'm not an audiophile per-se, but I do have an extensive rare record collection and have been converting my vinyl to digital formats for years. These are just the best methods for me.

Fishes,
narco.
it may be overkill but they are the easiest decks to find around here, especially if he was just thinking of hiring one for a few days
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Old Sep 14, 2005, 05:00 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NicP
it may be overkill but they are the easiest decks to find around here, especially if he was just thinking of hiring one for a few days

Good point, if he doesn't need the turntable for the long run just rent(hire) one.

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Old Sep 14, 2005, 05:03 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NicP
it may be overkill but they are the easiest decks to find around here, especially if he was just thinking of hiring one for a few days


Speaking of overkill....How sick is this turntable...I want one

http://www.vestax.com/v/players/qfo.html
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Old Sep 14, 2005, 06:04 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vixapphire
The new Stanton t-80 is a typical turntable with very good mechanical quality, great tonearm, etc. It also includes a built-in line-level output, as well as a digital (sp/dif) output. This will save you the cost of a phono preamp, the ttable itself is much cheaper than a 1200, and you'll be pretty happy with the result. If i'm not mistaken, I believe that it comes with a cartridge and stylus already mounted on the arm, so you don't have to worry about that part of it either.

Frankly, that sounds like the optimal solution for digitizing records. I think the company planned it that way. Best,

vixapphire
Can you think of any good reason to choose the T-80 over the STR8-80? Essentially the same output features without the fancy (and to most of us, useless) DJ features.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...TF8&n=11965861

Also, where does the digital output from this turntable plug into a Mac?
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Old Sep 15, 2005, 11:37 AM   #13
vixapphire
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IJ Reilly
Can you think of any good reason to choose the T-80 over the STR8-80? Essentially the same output features without the fancy (and to most of us, useless) DJ features.

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...TF8&n=11965861

Also, where does the digital output from this turntable plug into a Mac?
the differences are in the arm shape; "STR8" denotes straight-armed, versus curved, in Stanton's current model line nomenclature. the amazon photo is outdated, as may be the model info; see www.stantondj.com for more up-to-date info regarding the stanton line.

i would choose curved arm over the STR8 models unless you do any scratching, for which the straight-arm models claim a stability (on hard back-cueing, etc) advantage. i've got a curved arm model the t-120C, mainly because of its +/- 50% varispeed abilities, with an elliptical stylus (you don't need or want spherical unless you're back-cueing, scratching, etc.; elliptical treats records better and is higher-fidelity). the 120 has the improved % varispeed (although the 80's 12% varispeed is really plenty enough), but doesn't have the sp/dif and the nifty "pitch-locked varispeed", which is actually quite effective across most of the +/-12% range. the 120 also cost a bunch more and didn't come with the cartridge. major payne, but i'm running it in a pretty specialized application.

back to the issue at hand, the 80's sp/dif output can be run, with an adaptor you can get at radio shack for a few bucks, into the optical i/o on the G5. otherwise, the line level out can be run straight into the audio inputs on the computer.

the guy who mentioned using the quadra's "special audio i/o capabilities" is probably wasting his time; if i'm not mistaken, the quadra does not have a phono pre-amp built-in, it merely has a higher-quality i/o than its contemporary macs' onboard audio i/o, which was really noisy and lame.

by the time you're done buying turntable, cartridge and phono pre (plus cables, of course), you'll probably spend more than you would on a stanton t-80c or str8-80. and if you've seen them on stanton's web site, it's hard to fault the new industrial design the company's applied to its products - them's some very attractive units! given their recent bump up in quality, these are very well-built heavy-duty capable products; i expect mine to last most of my lifetime.

v

Last edited by vixapphire; Sep 15, 2005 at 11:41 AM.
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