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Speed stability: Direct Drive vs belt

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by DaleClark, Feb 11, 2019.

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  1. Helom

    Helom Forum member

    Location:
    U.S.
    It does in terms of build. Gotta say my buddy's 1200 feels just a bit lower rung IMHO. It weighs less, has a non-anodized tonearm, has cheap, captive cables, and it had just as much chatter in the tonearm bearings as my PLX had, though that was easily resolved in both cases. I just don't understand the hype over the 1200 MKII. It's a decent turntable that performs well for the price (for those who like that sound character), but certainly nothing to write home about.
     
  2. TheVinylAddict

    TheVinylAddict ___The Enforcer___

    Yeah, I am not sure if the "hype" is there because they've sold millions....... or if they sold millions because of the "hype". :)

    Either way, they've sold millions. But millions of people have been wrong before I guess.
     
    Slick Willie likes this.
  3. Helom

    Helom Forum member

    Location:
    U.S.
    I wouldn't say they are wrong for buying one. As i said, it performs well for the price. But for those who want to believe it competes with high performance belt-drives, say $2K class on up, that's just blissful thinking.
     
    TheVinylAddict likes this.
  4. TheVinylAddict

    TheVinylAddict ___The Enforcer___

    Well, not sure who is saying that..... I've said a few times now in this thread it depends and the comparisons are not absolute, and both DD and BD have their advantages, and some BD's are more stable than other DD"s and vice-versa, depending on how much you spend. (read the prior posts) It's not an absolute.

    On the same vane, making a $2K and up absolute statement.... well, I cannot tell you where that line is... but back to the topic, I think the SL-1200 is one of the most historically important TT"s ever, that is where the "hype" comes from. I respectfully have a much different view on where the 1200 stacks up....
     
    Helom likes this.
  5. AppleCorp3

    AppleCorp3 Forum Resident

    I got one last year and but have not regretted it. I play LPs, 45s and 78s - it can do it all with no discernible issues with speed.

    The best thing about this table is how customizable it is. I know it's not germane to your original question - but - I wanted to add my two pennies on the 'table.
     
  6. AppleCorp3

    AppleCorp3 Forum Resident

    Mine was dead quiet even when spinning at 78rpm. It's a cheapo but a damn fine one.
     
    vwestlife and Not Insane like this.
  7. rebellovw

    rebellovw Forum Resident

    Location:
    Prescott, AZ
    It makes the most sense as cartridge changing for 78s and other reasons is super simple. I’m flipping between close to 5 carts just for fun.
     
    AppleCorp3 and TheVinylAddict like this.
  8. 56GoldTop

    56GoldTop Forum Resident

    Location:
    Nowhere, Ok
    That would not be me.
     
  9. Guss2

    Guss2 Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Florida
    Apparently SOTA has picked up the Phoenix line, last I heard.
     
    56GoldTop likes this.
  10. 56GoldTop

    56GoldTop Forum Resident

    Location:
    Nowhere, Ok
    Seriously!?!?!?? :drool: If they become available again, I'm getting them.
     
  11. Davey

    Davey very clever with maracas

    Location:
    SF Bay Area, USA
    56GoldTop likes this.
  12. 56GoldTop

    56GoldTop Forum Resident

    Location:
    Nowhere, Ok
  13. Ghostworld

    Ghostworld Senior Member

    Location:
    US

    And they shouldn't, they used to sell for about $350 bucks all day long, back in those days. I still have a hard time parting with more than $300 for one. $250 was the common selling price on the used market back then. Like people have said, there were MILLIONS.

    But were they still a hundred times better manufactured and precise than 3/4 of the rubber band-drive wobblers out there in the world/ You bet they were. Just pick up an SL1200 platter and then look at you modern plastic, or plywood or pressboard platter -- it's still like comparing TIffany's to a dime store ring. That kind of quality is still unmatched my most mainstream companies like Pro-ject or even 'gasp' Rega.
     
    Last edited: Feb 11, 2019
    Big Blue and harby like this.
  14. Not Insane

    Not Insane You talkin' to me?!

    Location:
    Kentucky
    Yeah, I used the term "cheapo" tongue in cheek. :)

    I started selling hi-fi back in 1976. One of the brands we sold was Pioneer. I sold a TON of that stuff because it was way underpriced for the quality it offered. I also have five identical pairs of Stellar Labs headphones because they were $17 and are the best under $200 headphones I've ever owned, both for fidelity and comfort. The only thing they don't work for is my recording studio. They don't have sealed backs and the sound leaks into the studio mics when singers use them.

    And I lump the LP120 in with that group. Not as great a deal as the headphones, though. But still, for the price point, I would not even consider any of the inexpensive belt drives. But that is partly because I've had a lot of experience with both systems and have made a T-chart of pros and cons of each. And not only is the DD rife with pros, but the one con is irrelevant to me (electronic parts go bad after a decade or five). And regarding the 120 specifically, the benefits of a removable headshell dramatically overwhelm the one benefit of a non-removable headshell.

    For me, getting a non-removable headshell tonearm because it "sounds better" ever so slightly is like living in Arizona and removing your car's air conditioning because you'll get 3 extra horsepower. I ain't doin' it. :)

    And that analogy works for a lot of the "performance benefits" of a lot of stuff I don't do or buy regarding my hi-fi - or my car.
     
    Big Blue and Stanton56 like this.
  15. Not Insane

    Not Insane You talkin' to me?!

    Location:
    Kentucky
    And I've read threads every now and then where someone has broken a connector on a wire coming out of their tonearm. You simply don't even have to worry about that stuff with a removable headshell. An ordeal rife with complcation and real risk becomes easy and safe - even if you only do it once or twice.
     
    Big Blue and Stanton56 like this.
  16. bever70

    bever70 It's all about the soundstage

    Location:
    Belgium
    Now you're doing the same, comparing a vintage dd to modern 'lightweight' bd offerings from project etc.....not fair. Pick up a vintage Thorens platter instead!
    Anyway, it is an amusing discussion but as has been said before, get one of both! I am not pro or anti dd or bd, I use both. They each have their own capabilities/strengths.
     
  17. Not Insane

    Not Insane You talkin' to me?!

    Location:
    Kentucky
    This is an honest question: What benefit does belt drive offer over DD? I can't think of a single one.
     
  18. bever70

    bever70 It's all about the soundstage

    Location:
    Belgium
    One is that my suspended bd is better isolated from outside sources than my dd. But then again it is a lot fiddlier to set up and a lot more can go wrong. When I don't put the arm of the dd back into it's restposition in a very civilized way i get a big thump from the speakers, no such thing with the bd.
    Note that I am only speaking from my own tables, I don't generalize concerning other models.
     
    TheVinylAddict likes this.
  19. AppleCorp3

    AppleCorp3 Forum Resident

    Another advantage of the LP-120 (mine is actually PL-120) is as a starter table for would be hi-fi enthusiasts:

    Removeable headshells, easily adjustable anti-skate, VTA, and lots of opportunity to customize to name a few.

    And it sounds good too!
     
  20. Not Insane

    Not Insane You talkin' to me?!

    Location:
    Kentucky
    In that case, isn't it the plinth, rather than the drive type that causes the problem. That is, if you took the same setup, removed the motor and belt and slapped in a DD motor and platter, would it then be using the same suspension?

    I admit that a bad turntable (bad tonearm and lousy, noisy plinth) with DD would be worse than a belt drive with a great tonearm and really solid plinth, but it's not due to the drive system. However, all else being equal, is there any advantage a belt drive has over a DD. At all?
     
  21. Not Insane

    Not Insane You talkin' to me?!

    Location:
    Kentucky
    I just got a 78 rpm stylus for it off amazon. :) It's one reason I bought the turntable. I can now play my somewhat limited supply of 78's and can buy all I want at antique stores and garage sales for fun.

    Side note on the stylus: It was $12 when I put it in my cart. It was $14 when I finally bought it. It's now $18.
     
    AppleCorp3 likes this.
  22. bever70

    bever70 It's all about the soundstage

    Location:
    Belgium
    I also don't get the removable headshell thing with dd's.....most Thorens to name one, have removable headshells as well.
     
  23. TheVinylAddict

    TheVinylAddict ___The Enforcer___

    So many discussions become heated because they suffer from Highlander syndrome --- "There can be only one!!! :)

    Sometimes I wonder how many who dig their heels in on BD or DD have really tried BOTH types.... and not just defend because it is the choice they made (this is human nature btw).
     
    bever70 likes this.
  24. Not Insane

    Not Insane You talkin' to me?!

    Location:
    Kentucky
    Yeah. I'm not trying to say that removable headshell and DD go hand in hand. I'm just saying those are two features that are required in a TT for me. It's like saying the two things that are a requirement for me in a sports car are air conditioning and a manual transmission. You can get AC in any car.
     
    bever70 likes this.
  25. bever70

    bever70 It's all about the soundstage

    Location:
    Belgium
    Not possible! A suspended platter can't work with a dd by design. It isn't the plinth, it is the suspension that makes the difference and suspended platter equals bd.
     
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