Question What turntable should I buy?

TheShenkster

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Jun 29, 2022
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Hello everyone,

I'm looking to buy my girlfriend a turntable. We recently moved in together and she has quite a lot of LPs. My current set-up is a Yamaha WXA-50 with 2 Monitor Audio Bronze 2s. Because of the Yamaha amp I do need a pre-amp. My budget is around 300 euros.
So far I've been looking at these Pro-jects:

- Pro-ject primary e phono (269)
- Pro-ject debut III phono sb OM5e (279)
- Pro-ject essential III phono (329)
- Pro-ject debut recordmaster II (333)
- Pro-ject E1 phono (329)

What do you guys think?
Thanks in advance!
 

Gray

Well-known member
If you think your girlfriend might appreciate a fully automatic TT, then you might want to put this new Pro-ject on your list.
Possibly bit more than your budget, but includes the cartridge and built-in phono pre-amp.
Here's a review:
 

TheShenkster

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Jun 29, 2022
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Apart from the one @Gray mentions above take your pick they all appear to use the same cartridge so their isn't going to be much of a difference between them.
The one mentioned above is the best.

So because they use the same cartridge there isn't going to be much of a difference? Pro-ject advertises the debut line as mid-range while they advertise the e1 as entry level. Aren't there any differences in build quality etc?
 
So because they use the same cartridge there isn't going to be much of a difference? Pro-ject advertises the debut line as mid-range while they advertise the e1 as entry level. Aren't there any differences in build quality etc?
Yes there are, and tonearm as well, however the most difference that you will actually hear is the cartridge.
The range currently goes Primary, T, Essential, Debut, etc
However, if they were all fitted with an Ortofon OM5e I very much doubt you could tell the difference.
 
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TheShenkster

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Jun 29, 2022
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Ok so the essential III and the A1 have an OM10, the others OM5e. Is the difference enough to just choose between the essential III and the A1?
Any experience with the essential III having the belt on top?
 
Ok so the essential III and the A1 have an OM10, the others OM5e. Is the difference enough to just choose between the essential III and the A1?
Any experience with the essential III having the belt on top?
they all have a belt on top as far as I am aware, pretty sure the A1 is still belt drive
What I would say, between these two, if you don't need the automatic facility don't buy it as it's just something else to go wrong....
 

TheShenkster

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Jun 29, 2022
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they all have a belt on top as far as I am aware, pretty sure the A1 is still belt drive
What I would say, between these two, if you don't need the automatic facility don't buy it as it's just something else to go wrong....
With on top I meant it not being underneath the platter, but next to it, like on the essential III and the primary e.
Thanks for all the advice so far!
 

TheShenkster

Member
Jun 29, 2022
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What other brands are available local to you? Turntables in that price range tend to be very similar. As others have suggested the cart makes the biggest difference.
Well I've looked at rega (planar 1 plus) and audio technica (AT-LPW50PB), both being a bit too expensive. I've read good things about u turn and fluance, but both aren't available in the Netherlands.
 

plastic penguin

Well-known member
Well I've looked at rega (planar 1 plus) and audio technica (AT-LPW50PB), both being a bit too expensive. I've read good things about u turn and fluance, but both aren't available in the Netherlands.
Rega and AT are very good, in the quality as Pro-ject tables. I'm a big fan of Pro-ject, currently own the Classic and prior to that the Xpression 1.

Have you looked at the second hand or ex-demo market? In the UK we have dealers who sell older stock or used items. Perhaps that could be a option....
 

TheShenkster

Member
Jun 29, 2022
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Rega and AT are very good, in the quality as Pro-ject tables. I'm a big fan of Pro-ject, currently own the Classic and prior to that the Xpression 1.

Have you looked at the second hand or ex-demo market? In the UK we have dealers who sell older stock or used items. Perhaps that could be a option....
Yeah, but I haven't been able to find much from dealers, and don't know enough about it to just buy a secondhand from a random seller. I think the debut III is priced this low (279) because it's an older model. Do you think that makes it better value for money than the E1 for example, which has only been around for a couple of months?
 

plastic penguin

Well-known member
Yeah, but I haven't been able to find much from dealers, and don't know enough about it to just buy a secondhand from a random seller. I think the debut III is priced this low (279) because it's an older model. Do you think that makes it better value for money than the E1 for example, which has only been around for a couple of months?
To be honest, there's very little between budget tables over a 5 or 10 year period. The major difference is cartridges. Even though they have the same brand, slight tweaks are no doubt made over a decade.

Also, if you buy from reputable dealer, they should offer a returns, in case it doesn't fit your needs.
 
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