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Ripping Vinyl → Best TurnTable for archiving
Old 17th February 2020
  #1
Gear Maniac
Ripping Vinyl → Best TurnTable for archiving

Hi there,

I have some records I'd like to convert onto digital. Most of them are out of print, and many of them contain material that were never released as digital.

I already have the DAC converters, I just need to get a TurnTable/stylus + a preamp.

My plan is to do it 96Khz/24bit (actually, I have already a process sheet done), this is NOT a vinyl → MP3 project using an USB TurnTable.

I certainly know that there are several expensive gear out there concerning TurnTable equipment. But there is a point where each bucks you add the jump in quality get smaller. So, what I'm after is "ok, this is good enough regarding the money, but it doesn't sound cheap".

So far, my research leads me to:
  • Planar Rega 3
  • Planar Rega 6 (priceyyyy)
  • Technics SL1200mk2

Will probably use a Rega Mini A2D as preamp (not for its USB, only for the preamp).

I've been recommended an AT95EX stylus.

If you have any experience in ripping vinyl the way I am planning to do, your advices are welcome!

Old 17th February 2020
  #2
Gear Addict
 
becks bolero's Avatar
I would get the 1200MKii

also a record cleaner like a Spinclean, they are affordable & work well. I would clean the records first

Ortofon Red would be a better choice for a stylus IMO: what is the point in archiving your music with a cheap stylus?

Do you have a lot of records? if not, may be easier & cheaper to find a friend who has a good system, to help you. Then you might get away with just buying a decent stylus
Old 17th February 2020
  #3
js1
Lives for gear
 

I've transferred a ton of my records to files.

The Rega 3 will do a fine job. I'm a little behind on what's current with cartridges, so no comment there. FWIW, I'm using a Rega 2 turntable with a Linn Basik tonearm, and a Rega Bias II cartridge. I'm happy with it.

But, here's a few things that aren't always mentioned.

The cartridge mounting is CRITICAL. There is exactly one spot where the stylus will be in the optimum position for the entire surface of the record. In the wrong spot, the stylus will be at an angle at certain spots, and you'll get groove distortion. Used to do it myself, but now I take it to a good audio store to be set up.

The cleaner the record, the better the results. The cheap/handheld cleaners aren't worth it. If you can get your hands on a good cleaning machine (I rented one), it will make a difference.

Record warps will translate to subsonic energy (like 10 hz). You'll see it in the waveform. My preamp has a subsonic filter, but if not, then a plugin will do the trick.

I've tried some of the general vinyl cleanup software, and IMO they damage the sound. To clean up the clicks and pops, I use the Acon Restoration Suite DeClick plugin. It works well, and you can pick it up cheap during the sales. Listen to what it's removing, and make sure that you're not taking out the transients. For hiss/broadband noise, the DeNoise plugin (you take a noiseprint) used with a light touch can help. But I avoid that if possible.

The cleaner the vinyl, the less the software has to do.

You'll hear any vinyl noise the most during the song fadeouts (hey, they used to be the standard). I'll do my own fadeout a few seconds before the actual fadeout if it can be done without hurting the song.

I will do some subtle EQ if I think it's necessary. I'll reference my rip to the same track on Spotify if it's available. (Even if a record is out of print, often one track will appear in a compilation). I won't try to match it - rather I see if there's something obvious that I like about the Spotify version that's missing in my rip.

Hope this helps.
Old 17th February 2020
  #4
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by becks bolero View Post
I would get the 1200MKii

also a record cleaner like a Spinclean, they are affordable & work well. I would clean the records first

Ortofon Red would be a better choice for a stylus IMO: what is the point in archiving your music with a cheap stylus?

Do you have a lot of records? if not, may be easier & cheaper to find a friend who has a good system, to help you. Then you might get away with just buying a decent stylus
I have no friends around into music, into sound. All of them are just happy with their MP3s crap and Spotify thing. They will be more than happy to listen to my archives, but they dont care about the audio side.

I didn't know th AT95EX was/is a cheap stylus, actually this one has been recommended to me such as you recommend the Ortofon Red one.
Remember: I'm a newbie in the vinyl gear world. ;-)
I'll look for info about the Ortofon Red stylus though.

Thanks for the recommendations. Will have a look at the Spinclean as well.
Old 17th February 2020
  #5
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by js1 View Post
I've transferred a ton of my records to files.

The Rega 3 will do a fine job. I'm a little behind on what's current with cartridges, so no comment there. FWIW, I'm using a Rega 2 turntable with a Linn Basik tonearm, and a Rega Bias II cartridge. I'm happy with it.

But, here's a few things that aren't always mentioned.

The cartridge mounting is CRITICAL. There is exactly one spot where the stylus will be in the optimum position for the entire surface of the record. In the wrong spot, the stylus will be at an angle at certain spots, and you'll get groove distortion. Used to do it myself, but now I take it to a good audio store to be set up.

The cleaner the record, the better the results. The cheap/handheld cleaners aren't worth it. If you can get your hands on a good cleaning machine (I rented one), it will make a difference.

Record warps will translate to subsonic energy (like 10 hz). You'll see it in the waveform. My preamp has a subsonic filter, but if not, then a plugin will do the trick.

I've tried some of the general vinyl cleanup software, and IMO they damage the sound. To clean up the clicks and pops, I use the Acon Restoration Suite DeClick plugin. It works well, and you can pick it up cheap during the sales. Listen to what it's removing, and make sure that you're not taking out the transients. For hiss/broadband noise, the DeNoise plugin (you take a noiseprint) used with a light touch can help. But I avoid that if possible.

The cleaner the vinyl, the less the software has to do.

You'll hear any vinyl noise the most during the song fadeouts (hey, they used to be the standard). I'll do my own fadeout a few seconds before the actual fadeout if it can be done without hurting the song.

I will do some subtle EQ if I think it's necessary. I'll reference my rip to the same track on Spotify if it's available. (Even if a record is out of print, often one track will appear in a compilation). I won't try to match it - rather I see if there's something obvious that I like about the Spotify version that's missing in my rip.

Hope this helps.
Thanks!
Actually, I dont plan to deNoise (will probably have to do though).
I am considering the cleaning phase, but saw that a lot of washing machine were not so useful. Anyhow, cleaning is important.
Thanks for the 10hz info. Luckily, I dot think I have warped records.
Will have a look a the cartridge mounting! ;-)
Old 17th February 2020
  #6
Gear Nut
 

+1 for a good vinyl cleaner, I have a Moth Mkii, but a liquid and vacuum option is good. I am lucky I bought an LP12 a long time ago and it's great, but I am sure a Rega 3 would be good.
Some de-noise clean-up software is worthwhile too.
Old 17th February 2020
  #7
Gear Maniac
 

Record cleaners that really work well are not cheap but they are worth it if you care about vinyl and sound quality. VPI, Nitty Gritty, and Keith Monks are the real deal.

Ripping vinyl is very time consuming (real time playing, cutting tracks, and organizing) so in my opinion it just isn't worth it at all to do a halfassed job at it.

The Technics is well thought of but it's a direct drive DJ table, the Rega tables are better suited to your purpose.

The Ortofon Red would be bare minimum, it's quite decent but not at all what would be considered a high end cartridge, especially on a Rega. If you could swing it I would say step up to the Blue. If you're point is quality sound then you need a quality source. The table is crucial of course but it does start at the cartridge and the vinyl itself, not all vinyl is amazing. It's not just the condition but some pressings just aren't all that great.

I went from vinyl (back before CD's came out, to CD's in 84', back to vinyl about 1990 and in spite of having about 1500 records currently I tend to buy stuff on CD again in the last few years.

My current table is a Thorens TD160 with a Grado cartridge that is about equivilent to the Ortofon Blue. I did have a Linn LP12 with a higher end Grado back when I was pushing my budget for vinyl playback but lately I'm finding that the OPPO playing CD's is quite good sounding without the hassle and noise of vinyl.
Old 17th February 2020
  #8
Gear Maniac
 
Tobias Enstrom's Avatar
Can't go wrong with the Technics. That's what I'm using but have upgraded the tone arm.

The Ortofon 2M range is ideal.

I clean my records just before recording them with a 3 stage (did use to be 4 stage until I quickly learnt that Isopropyl Alcohol destroys Perspex ) clean, using a record vacuum cleaner.

1st stage is with a carbon fibre brush https://www.amazon.co.uk/Acc-Sees-Vi...c=1&th=1&psc=1
2nd stage is with cleaning fluid and using a mofi pad https://www.mofi.com/product-p/mfsllpb.htm
3rd stage is distilled water to rinse off the record

I can edit most of the clicks/pops out using Logic Pro X using the pencil tool.

Did try software for removing crackle but I found that it affected the sound too much. Took a lot of the high end out.

Keep your stylus clean using something like this https://www.amazon.co.uk/Onzow-Zero-...a-348346209293
and this https://www.amazon.co.uk/TRIXES-Jewe.../dp/B004U5N6K2

If you're setting up the deck yourself, check out this vid


And be careful not to go down the rabbit hole of high end audio
Old 17th February 2020
  #9
Gear Addict
 
becks bolero's Avatar
do you plan to keep all this gear, or are you selling it once you have ripped your albums?
Old 18th February 2020
  #10
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by becks bolero View Post
do you plan to keep all this gear, or are you selling it once you have ripped your albums?
I am buying vinyl more than ever... I think I had maybe 10/20 records until 2018. Now have 150/200. It is not a huge vinyl collection, but mainly on specific artists (7", 10", 12", flexi, LPs, promos, test pressings...). Most of them are second hand. Records from the 80s/90s.

As I might still buy records in the future to complete what I already have, I'll need to keep the TT setup.
Old 18th February 2020
  #11
Gear Maniac
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tobias Enstrom View Post
Can't go wrong with the Technics. That's what I'm using but have upgraded the tone arm.

The Ortofon 2M range is ideal.

I clean my records just before recording them with a 3 stage (did use to be 4 stage until I quickly learnt that Isopropyl Alcohol destroys Perspex ) clean, using a record vacuum cleaner.

1st stage is with a carbon fibre brush https://www.amazon.co.uk/Acc-Sees-Vi...c=1&th=1&psc=1
2nd stage is with cleaning fluid and using a mofi pad https://www.mofi.com/product-p/mfsllpb.htm
3rd stage is distilled water to rinse off the record

I can edit most of the clicks/pops out using Logic Pro X using the pencil tool.

Did try software for removing crackle but I found that it affected the sound too much. Took a lot of the high end out.

Keep your stylus clean using something like this https://www.amazon.co.uk/Onzow-Zero-...a-348346209293
and this https://www.amazon.co.uk/TRIXES-Jewe.../dp/B004U5N6K2

If you're setting up the deck yourself, check out this vid


And be careful not to go down the rabbit hole of high end audio
Thanks Tobias!
Some useful info for me here.
Old 18th February 2020
  #12
Gear Maniac
Indeed, ripping vinyl is a time consuming process.
Cleaning. Ripping. Editing. Listening. Correcting. Tracking. Converting...

Most of my vinyls are 12"s. Not so many LPs.
And I have 'only' 150/200 records to convert.
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