TURNTABLES : Commonwealth and Garrard 301

Spinning vinyl is the hot topic this week,  beginning wirh two Commonwealth turntables at Abbey’s on Saturday. Both bought by a friend who alredy owns a mint condition one. Duc at Golden Age Audio also uses one and all who’ve heard it will be interested. Both should be available from John’s Exchange soon.

Np sooner had the Commonwealths been won when Van set up Derek’s Linn LP12. The excuse for fiddling with tihe LP12 was that Derek was convinced his LP12 was NOT sounding better than CD. So he and Van got busy, this is a direct quote:

For me, it was the frustration that my vinyl rig did not sound better than my CD. It was the lack of knowledge of setting up TTs that was frustrating me, and I kept thinking that some part in my Vinyl chain was a missing link, ie could it be the cheap cartridge, the lack of ‘trampoline board’ or some fandangled power supply, or was it my tonearm, was the cartrdige misaligned…? – the inexperience almost made me buy a Rega 2 or 4 from John a couple of times last year. Too many variables to consider.

Yet…Van knew what may have been the cause and adjusted the tracking weight and the ‘treble/bass’ and air and soundstage just opened up. Then we re-checked the cartridge force against spec. I thought the cartridge was within spec for tracking force, but I guess its the ‘knowledge’ of the tweaking that improved it no end.
But the new price of Linns is obscene ($6k-12k- infinity), considering how simple it is with no fancy material or technology. In saying that, I have to get a new original Linn belt and its original felt mat (would you believe I threw it out by accident cos I swapped it into a broken turntable and took that rubber mat instead. I may also try a thick cork mat to experiment –
The next part of this week’s Vinyl story was the phone call from Ray who was about to buy a grey (schedule 1) grease bearing Garrard 301. Stlill one of ghe best sounding decks. I remember a customer telling me he’d just put a cream 301 out eith the rubbish that morning!  A lucky passe by scored that one. I looked up the refernces and comparisons of the grease baring and oil bearing Garrards. Loricraft and 6 moons were the best. Lin
ks and photos to follow soon.
Don’t forget the best vinyl source vinylengine.com and Art Dudley of Stereophile also has an interesting stpry about making a plinth for his 301.



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