Question Total beginner looking for advice for first hi-fi purchase

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Edbostan

Well-known member
Aug 5, 2021
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Hello,

I'm looking at purchasing my first hi-fi set up and wanted to reach out for some expert advice. I'm a music fan above all else and I'm looking for a set up that will sound great with the minimal amount of set up and after care. I live in quite a populated area with neighbours attached on all sides so I really want a system that is capable of producing a nice quality of sound on quite low volumes

My budget is around £800 for a turntable, amp and some bookshelf speakers. I've got my eye on the pro-ject debut carbon evo as I've seen a lot of videos that seem to suggest it's a turntable you won't need to upgrade for a long while at reasonable price, but I'm wary this doesn't leave an awful lot in the budget for amp & speakers. With the speakers, the Q Acoustics range look like they'd be a good fit for the size room and my price range, but I'm a bit confused about what I should even be looking for in an amp.

As I said, I'm a complete novice, barring some DJ decks I had in my late teens so would be genuinely appreciative of any advice people may have.

Many thanks in advance to any repliers.
Rega have a system comprising of turntable, amp and speakers in a package for around £1000. Worth a listen
 
Debut Evo + Klipsch R41PM or R51PM
Excellent TT & project have a raft of upgrades without buying a new TT
Klipsch PM active speakers with built in phono stage , add a project phono in the future
& speakers can stream from PC or Phone/ work as soundbar for your TV
Add matching Subwoofer if required in the future

BUYER'S GUIDE TO EVO UPGRADES - The Audiophile Man

Reference Powered Speakers - YouTube


View attachment 3000
possibly limiting future upgrade potential but it's certainly a direction the OP could be looking at for his budget.
 
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Youngsoulrebel

Active member
Dec 9, 2021
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Debut Evo + Klipsch R41PM or R51PM
Excellent TT & project have a raft of upgrades without buying a new TT
Klipsch PM active speakers with built in phono stage , add a project phono in the future
& speakers can stream from PC or Phone/ work as soundbar for your TV
Add matching Subwoofer if required in the future

BUYER'S GUIDE TO EVO UPGRADES - The Audiophile Man

Reference Powered Speakers - YouTube


View attachment 3000
I've not considered active speakers at all (there really are a lot of variables to this aren't there!) but will be sure to check a few out as it seems like it could be a more affordable option.

I like the idea of having Bluetooth connectivity because as referenced by an earlier poster records aren't bloomin cheap are they and it would be nice to have the streaming option available.
 
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Gray

Well-known member
I've not considered active speakers at all (there really are a lot of variables to this aren't there!) but will be sure to check a few out as it seems like it could be a more affordable option.
...in which case screened coaxial, rather than speaker cable, in the trunking to one or both speakers, with speaker cable (or not) between the two (depending on the active speakers connections).
You're right there are a few variables 😏

And don't forget that, with built-in amp(s), one or both speakers would need its own mains power - so preferably near wall socket(s).
 
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plastic penguin

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I've not considered active speakers at all (there really are a lot of variables to this aren't there!) but will be sure to check a few out as it seems like it could be a more affordable option.

I like the idea of having Bluetooth connectivity because as referenced by an earlier poster records aren't bloomin cheap are they and it would be nice to have the streaming option available.
Active speakers could be ideal. However, they can have limited inputs and you'll have to budget for a separate phono stage.
 
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rainsoothe

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Apr 30, 2012
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Rega have a system comprising of turntable, amp and speakers in a package for around £1000. Worth a listen
This is what I'd look into.

Alternatively, I'd go for Dali speakers (Spektor 2 or Oberon 1, they're both unbelievably good imo, and do low volume great), an Audio Technica LP5x turntable (or the Project your'e considering) and a Rega Io if you can stretch for it, or a Cambridge Audio AXA 35 if you can't.
 

rainsoothe

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Apr 30, 2012
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Oberon 1 can have alot sibilance https://www.avforums.com/threads/dali-oberon-1-sibilance.2373397/

Dali spektor 1 has an unnaturally soft upper midrange (bbc dip ?)
I almost stopped reading that thread after the first sentence, mentioning Denon Ceol and QED 79. I kept on reading a bit, though, to find picture of the room of another poster who had this issue, which was almost empty and full of reflective surfaces. And he was powering his Monitor Audios (which were replacing the Oberons) with a Yamaha reciever.

I say to OP audition and let your ears decide.
 

record_spot

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May 30, 2015
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The great advantage of buying online means you're covered by legislation that allows you to return goods up 14 days after purchase. In-store, you don't get this protection as it's deemed you can see and handle the goods.

My advice: know the general kind of sound that you like - clear, bassy, less or lots of detail, and so on - then find the gear that best fits that sound.

I haven't bought from a dealer in-store in ten years. Most dealers don't carry all the brands, so you might need to shop around anyway.

Incidentally, if you do buy online, you can take the goods out (and use them). Your requirement is to take reasonable care of the goods. Obviously, if you trash them, you'll not get a penny back. Otherwise, it's the best way to do it. You get to listen in your home and at your own pace.
 

record_spot

Well-known member
May 30, 2015
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Also ditto earlier comments re: active speakers. I've been using actives since 2015 and won't be going back to passives any time soon. I added a Linn preamp (old style Kolektor model) and that gives me all the inputs that I needed.
 

Youngsoulrebel

Active member
Dec 9, 2021
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Thanks for the continued replies.

I think I've found cause to expand my budget slightly after a better than expected Christmas bonus and have been looking at this bundle deal as an option https://dougbradyhifi.com/collections/turntable-starter-systems/products/rega-planar-2-turntable-system?variant=37369485918357

I've never heard of Rotel as a brand and wondered if anyone had any thoughts on that amp, the a11. The addition of bluetooth is something that appeals as I will still be streaming the odd bit of new music I've yet to purchase.
 
Thanks for the continued replies.

I think I've found cause to expand my budget slightly after a better than expected Christmas bonus and have been looking at this bundle deal as an option https://dougbradyhifi.com/collections/turntable-starter-systems/products/rega-planar-2-turntable-system?variant=37369485918357

I've never heard of Rotel as a brand and wondered if anyone had any thoughts on that amp, the a11. The addition of bluetooth is something that appeals as I will still be streaming the odd bit of new music I've yet to purchase.
Nothing wrong with Rotel and the A11 Tribute is getting good reviews. Should be fine with B&W speakers, the only thing that will let the system down is the cheap cartridge fitted fitted to that Planar 2, but it will do the job.
 

dkontos

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Apr 24, 2021
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Nothing wrong with Rotel and the A11 Tribute is getting good reviews. Should be fine with B&W speakers, the only thing that will let the system down is the cheap cartridge fitted fitted to that Planar 2, but it will do the job.
I had Rotel A11 with B&W 601S3 and they were ok.
 

Youngsoulrebel

Active member
Dec 9, 2021
12
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I've pulled the trigger. Saw a good deal for the pro-ject so I've gone for that with the rotel a11 and spektor 2s, came with qed micro cable and got some atacama cyclone stands.

Came to £1,143 all in which feels like a good deal.

Begrudgingly got permission to rearrange the living room to accommodate a proper stand for it as well.

Thanks again for all of the advice.
 

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