Pro-Ject 1 Xpression

mjg060468

Well-known member
May 20, 2016
22
3
10,525
Hi I would be very interested in peoples opinions as to the best way for me to go. I currently have a Pro-Ject 1 Xpression turntable which has done me proud feeding through a NADC352 and a pair of new Monitor Audio Bronze 2 speakers. My query is, is it worth me upgrading my turntable or upgrade the arm. I was looking at the Audio Technica LP5 but going by what has been said on this forum, I should steer clear and spedn my money more wisely as I want a turntable to give me the best possible sound. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
 

plastic penguin

Well-known member
mjg060468 said:
Hi I would be very interested in peoples opinions as to the best way for me to go. I currently have a Pro-Ject 1 Xpression turntable which has done me proud feeding through a NADC352 and a pair of new Monitor Audio Bronze 2 speakers. My query is, is it worth me upgrading my turntable or upgrade the arm. I was looking at the Audio Technica LP5 but going by what has been said on this forum, I should steer clear and spedn my money more wisely as I want a turntable to give me the best possible sound. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Welcome...

I have the Xpression 1 from 2006. Very good TT and the sound quality can be improved from the standard Ortofon cart. I've upgraded mine to ClearAudio Concept cartridge. Prior to that had the ClearAudio Classic Wood Aurum cart. Gives it a very noticable uplift.

I wouldn't change the arm at this stage. Try a better cart and see where that takes you.
 
plastic penguin said:
mjg060468 said:
Hi I would be very interested in peoples opinions as to the best way for me to go. I currently have a Pro-Ject 1 Xpression turntable which has done me proud feeding through a NADC352 and a pair of new Monitor Audio Bronze 2 speakers. My query is, is it worth me upgrading my turntable or upgrade the arm. I was looking at the Audio Technica LP5 but going by what has been said on this forum, I should steer clear and spedn my money more wisely as I want a turntable to give me the best possible sound. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Welcome...

I have the Xpression 1 from 2006. Very good TT and the sound quality can be improved from the standard Ortofon cart. I've upgraded mine to ClearAudio Concept cartridge. Prior to that had the ClearAudio Classic Wood Aurum cart. Gives it a very noticable uplift.

I wouldn't change the arm at this stage. Try a better cart and see where that takes you.
Sound words from PP. If your deck is still operating satisfactorily then money spent on the cartridge would offer most benefit. The LP5 might be a sideways move at best or a retrograde step at worst. If that is your sort of budget then keep what you have got.

Welcome to the forum by the way.
 

plastic penguin

Well-known member
mjg060468 said:
Would you stick to the V2 MM cartridge or look at the MC cartridge
Personally I wouldn't spend over £200 with a £200 turntable. Even though I have the optional MC phono stage on the Leema, I would need to be convinced that spending £300-£400 on a MC cart would be worthwhile.

Best advice, assuming a MC is within your budget, is to take it into a dealers and try some MCs with your amp.
 

chrisr1718

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2009
52
0
18,540
I still have my Project Xpression, and as PP says, if it's still working there are a few changes you can make to improve it.

I have fitted the S/E upgrade kit which consists of two rubber gromets this is to help decouple the motor from the plinth, and a new rounded drive belt and alternative pulley to match. Take a look here

I also swaped the cartridge for a Nagaoka MP-110. I've always used Nagaoka, even with my old Dual, as I like the presentation and deatil. I got mine from Divine Audio.

I think about upgrading, RP3 perhaps, but as I very pleased with the sound I've got from my set up I'm reluctant to change it.
 
plastic penguin said:
mjg060468 said:
Would you stick to the V2 MM cartridge or look at the MC cartridge
Personally I wouldn't spend over £200 with a £200 turntable. Even though I have the optional MC phono stage on the Leema, I would need to be convinced that spending £300-£400 on a MC cart would be worthwhile.

Best advice, assuming a MC is within your budget, is to take it into a dealers and try some MCs with your amp.
I'd like to clarify how he is playing a turntable through a NAD C352, or am I missing something somewhere? This amp only has line level inputs so will certainly not take a MC cartridge. In theory it will not take a MM either.
 

chrisr1718

Well-known member
Sep 18, 2009
52
0
18,540
Al ears said:
plastic penguin said:
mjg060468 said:
Would you stick to the V2 MM cartridge or look at the MC cartridge
Personally I wouldn't spend over £200 with a £200 turntable. Even though I have the optional MC phono stage on the Leema, I would need to be convinced that spending £300-£400 on a MC cart would be worthwhile.

Best advice, assuming a MC is within your budget, is to take it into a dealers and try some MCs with your amp.
I'd like to clarify how he is playing a turntable through a NAD C352, or am I missing something somewhere? This amp only has line level inputs so will certainly not take a MC cartridge. In theory it will not take a MM either.
Perhaps he has a phono pre-amp he hasn't mentioned

mjg060468, have you?
 
chrisr1718 said:
Al ears said:
plastic penguin said:
mjg060468 said:
Would you stick to the V2 MM cartridge or look at the MC cartridge
Personally I wouldn't spend over £200 with a £200 turntable. Even though I have the optional MC phono stage on the Leema, I would need to be convinced that spending £300-£400 on a MC cart would be worthwhile.

Best advice, assuming a MC is within your budget, is to take it into a dealers and try some MCs with your amp.
I'd like to clarify how he is playing a turntable through a NAD C352, or am I missing something somewhere? This amp only has line level inputs so will certainly not take a MC cartridge. In theory it will not take a MM either.
Perhaps he has a phono pre-amp he hasn't mentioned

mjg060468, have you?
That's what I was trying to determine before going forward.

And to concur with PP I wouldn't recommend anyone buy a MC cartridge if they are spending less than £350 (and can afford a complete new one when they break the stylus. ;-) )
 

mjg060468

Well-known member
May 20, 2016
22
3
10,525
chrisr1718 said:
Al ears said:
plastic penguin said:
mjg060468 said:
Would you stick to the V2 MM cartridge or look at the MC cartridge
Personally I wouldn't spend over £200 with a £200 turntable. Even though I have the optional MC phono stage on the Leema, I would need to be convinced that spending £300-£400 on a MC cart would be worthwhile.

Best advice, assuming a MC is within your budget, is to take it into a dealers and try some MCs with your amp.
I'd like to clarify how he is playing a turntable through a NAD C352, or am I missing something somewhere? This amp only has line level inputs so will certainly not take a MC cartridge. In theory it will not take a MM either.
Perhaps he has a phono pre-amp he hasn't mentioned

mjg060468, have you?
Thanks for all the info, to clarify the turntable is connected to the amp via a NAD phono preamp PP2
 

BigH

New member
Dec 29, 2012
97
3
0
mjg060468 said:
Hi I would be very interested in peoples opinions as to the best way for me to go. I currently have a Pro-Ject 1 Xpression turntable which has done me proud feeding through a NADC352 and a pair of new Monitor Audio Bronze 2 speakers. My query is, is it worth me upgrading my turntable or upgrade the arm. I was looking at the Audio Technica LP5 but going by what has been said on this forum, I should steer clear and spedn my money more wisely as I want a turntable to give me the best possible sound. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
I would have a look at this first: https://www.henleydesigns.co.uk/S/E-Upgrade-Kit-p841

Then I think a cartridge upgrade. Cheapest MC are about £170, Denon make 2, one is high output (110) so you can use with a MM phono stage, the other 103 is low output so you will need a MC phono stage. Best possible sound how have you got your TT set up?
 
Feb 18, 2015
59
1
10,545
The ortofon 2m blue works well with the xpression I've had it and was a great upgrade.don't even think about the denon 103r,it's got a very low compliance (along with low output)and is not a good match with a project arm of modern day turntables.most of the audiotechnica carts are a good match also.
 

BigH

New member
Dec 29, 2012
97
3
0
I was going to suggest a Nagaoko mm but their prices seem to have gone mad lately.
 
BigH said:
I was going to suggest a Nagaoko mm but their prices seem to have gone mad lately.
They have haven't they. Buying direct from Japan is probably the only viable choice. It would appear UK dealers have cottoned on to their popularity and raised prices considerably. Before anyone says no it was Nagaoka then perhaps they could explain why most other cartridges including AudioTechnica have fallen in price.

It would be nice to know though, after the upgrade kit mentioned, what budget the OP has for possible future upgrades.
 
Feb 18, 2015
59
1
10,545
Even the Japanese prices escalated a bit...then theirs the import tax and so on . it's very difficult to get a good deal on a cart these days . what do we expect with the vinyl revival etc.As long as vinyl sales escalate what do you think is going to happen with the price of cartridges?
 

mjg060468

Well-known member
May 20, 2016
22
3
10,525
Thank you everyone for your thoughts. A fantastic help and definitely going to go down a new cartridge route. Already ordered the upgrade from Henley designs. Really appreciated
 
mjg060468 said:
Thank you everyone for your thoughts. A fantastic help and definitely going to go down a new cartridge route. Already ordered the upgrade from Henley designs. Really appreciated
Come back when you have had time to assess the upgrade pack and let us know what you think.
 

BigH

New member
Dec 29, 2012
97
3
0
Al ears said:
BigH said:
I was going to suggest a Nagaoko mm but their prices seem to have gone mad lately.
They have haven't they. Buying direct from Japan is probably the only viable choice. It would appear UK dealers have cottoned on to their popularity and raised prices considerably. Before anyone says no it was Nagaoka then perhaps they could explain why most other cartridges including AudioTechnica have fallen in price.

It would be nice to know though, after the upgrade kit mentioned, what budget the OP has for possible future upgrades.
I don't think its just a uk problem, have read same comments on a USA site also. The fall in £ has probably not helped but it does seem Nagaoka have pushed up their prices in last year or so. Maybe supply and demand I don't know. Cartridges are a matter of taste but getting to hear different ones is not easy.
 
BigH said:
Al ears said:
BigH said:
I was going to suggest a Nagaoko mm but their prices seem to have gone mad lately.
They have haven't they. Buying direct from Japan is probably the only viable choice. It would appear UK dealers have cottoned on to their popularity and raised prices considerably. Before anyone says no it was Nagaoka then perhaps they could explain why most other cartridges including AudioTechnica have fallen in price.

It would be nice to know though, after the upgrade kit mentioned, what budget the OP has for possible future upgrades.
I don't think its just a uk problem, have read same comments on a USA site also. The fall in £ has probably not helped but it does seem Nagaoka have pushed up their prices in last year or so. Maybe supply and demand I don't know. Cartridges are a matter of taste but getting to hear different ones is not easy.
I would quite agree that the humble cartridge is perhaps one of the most difficult pieces of a hifi system to actually audition and this is where listening to people who have experience of them becomes invaluable. Few dealers will break one of these out of a new box and let lubrication it. Normally you can only get to hear those that's pre-fitted to certain turntables.

The rise in Nagaoka prices has changed my normal go to cartridges at certain price points towards Audio Technica.
 

mjg060468

Well-known member
May 20, 2016
22
3
10,525
BigH said:
Al ears said:
BigH said:
I was going to suggest a Nagaoko mm but their prices seem to have gone mad lately.
They have haven't they. Buying direct from Japan is probably the only viable choice. It would appear UK dealers have cottoned on to their popularity and raised prices considerably. Before anyone says no it was Nagaoka then perhaps they could explain why most other cartridges including AudioTechnica have fallen in price.

It would be nice to know though, after the upgrade kit mentioned, what budget the OP has for possible future upgrades.
I don't think its just a uk problem, have read same comments on a USA site also. The fall in £ has probably not helped but it does seem Nagaoka have pushed up their prices in last year or so. Maybe supply and demand I don't know. Cartridges are a matter of taste but getting to hear different ones is not easy.
Probably looking to spend up to £200 for the right cartridge. Have seen a couple of audio technica moving coil for circa £150. Is MC worth looking at over and above a MM cartridge for the same money
 
mjg060468 said:
BigH said:
Al ears said:
BigH said:
I was going to suggest a Nagaoko mm but their prices seem to have gone mad lately.
They have haven't they. Buying direct from Japan is probably the only viable choice. It would appear UK dealers have cottoned on to their popularity and raised prices considerably. Before anyone says no it was Nagaoka then perhaps they could explain why most other cartridges including AudioTechnica have fallen in price.

It would be nice to know though, after the upgrade kit mentioned, what budget the OP has for possible future upgrades.
I don't think its just a uk problem, have read same comments on a USA site also. The fall in £ has probably not helped but it does seem Nagaoka have pushed up their prices in last year or so. Maybe supply and demand I don't know. Cartridges are a matter of taste but getting to hear different ones is not easy.
Probably looking to spend up to £200 for the right cartridge. Have seen a couple of audio technica moving coil for circa £150. Is MC worth looking at over and above a MM cartridge for the same money
Not at that price point, in my opinion, stick with moving magnet.

Was the AT an AT-F2?
 

mjg060468

Well-known member
May 20, 2016
22
3
10,525
Al ears said:
mjg060468 said:
BigH said:
Al ears said:
BigH said:
I was going to suggest a Nagaoko mm but their prices seem to have gone mad lately.
They have haven't they. Buying direct from Japan is probably the only viable choice. It would appear UK dealers have cottoned on to their popularity and raised prices considerably. Before anyone says no it was Nagaoka then perhaps they could explain why most other cartridges including AudioTechnica have fallen in price.

It would be nice to know though, after the upgrade kit mentioned, what budget the OP has for possible future upgrades.
I don't think its just a uk problem, have read same comments on a USA site also. The fall in £ has probably not helped but it does seem Nagaoka have pushed up their prices in last year or so. Maybe supply and demand I don't know. Cartridges are a matter of taste but getting to hear different ones is not easy.
Probably looking to spend up to £200 for the right cartridge. Have seen a couple of audio technica moving coil for circa £150. Is MC worth looking at over and above a MM cartridge for the same money
Not at that price point, in my opinion, stick with moving magnet.

Was the AT an AT-F2?
Yes it was, is that a good thing?
 

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