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Thread: Digitizing albums?

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    Default Digitizing albums?

    Anyone have suggestions on USB turntables for digitizing albums?

    Or, perhaps, an A/D to use with analog turntable and a digital recorder?

    Price range on either: US$500 - US$1,000.

    Do I really need to go that expensive to get a quality recording?

    Thanks!

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    Yes, you can probably go very expensive, especially if you are dedicated to getting the best results. I'm not that dedicated. I wanted something that was hopefully better than just rubbish, but given it's only the obscurest corners of my record collection (which I haven't lovingly maintained, either) that hasn't seen any digital release, I went for something that wasn't totally high end. I still have my old Rega Planar 3 turntable, and on some forum I found out that Rega make a combined phono preamp + USB audio device. So I got myself the Rega Fono Mini A2D for a shade under AUD $200. So, if you already have a turntable, something like that is an option to consider, and may be a bit better than a USB turntable as such.

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    Thanks for your input, snagu!

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    I would argue that you will always get the best value for money by buying a decent turntable and a $200 Zoom or Tascam digital recorder. The convenience of a USB turntable will come at the price of a compromise on both sides of the equation.

    I also believe that it’s worth investing more in the analogue part of the solution. Decent digital recorders at the $200 mark won’t sound any different to those costing 2 or 3 times that amount (though expensive ones may have better input options and features aimed at pro users but likely useless for what you need). Turntables can be very variable, and very much better the more you spend. That said even a second hand $300 Technics SL1210 with $150 cartridge will sound better than many ‘name brand’ HiFi turntables…

    All in my experience of course.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Beechwoods View Post
    I would argue that you will always get the best value for money by buying a decent turntable and a $200 Zoom or Tascam digital recorder. The convenience of a USB turntable will come at the price of a compromise on both sides of the equation.
    Not disagreeing with any of this but pointing out that you would also need to purchase a phono preamp for this setup also, right? Because the digital recorder won't be applying the phono EQ curve (RIAA) to the turntable phono outs. Unless modern turntables actually do this nowadays (my turntable certainly doesn't).

    Also, while I'm typing, one caveat to my Rega Fono Mini A2D is that the USB side of that is not hi-res. It's 16-bit at 44.1/48kHz sample rate. Again, that's all I want, but yes the turntable + phono preamp + digital recorder will likely get you higher res if that's what you are after. The nice thing about this approach vs plain USB turntable is that it's more amenable to upgrading the components over time. And, as Beechwoods says, starting with the spending emphasis on the analog side.

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    Agreed on the preamp! An obvious oversight on my part... the Project Phono Box MM offers particularly good bang for the buck. Beware cheap no-brand Amazon or eBay Phono Pre's. But there are some great sounding ones to be had in $100-150 range.

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    Thanks to the two of you for your inputs. It is appreciated.

    On the recording side, I have a Sound Design MixPre-6 II. For the turntable and A/D someone suggested I consider this: https://www.project-audio.com/en/pro...NvfCVUC65TlyGI

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    I have been looking at the Audio Technica LP-120XUSB turntable as a starting point. Now watching the reviews at YouTube for this direct drive turntable and other direct drive and belt drive options for plus and minus opinions.

    I had a project turntable and vintage Technics turntable and sold both this summer. May have been a mistake. Other options are Fluance and Rega. May upgrade the included cartridge to better.
    Last edited by Rick0725; 2022-02-01 at 02:43 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick0725 View Post
    I have been looking at the Audio Technica LP-120XUSB turntable as a starting point. Now watching the reviews at YouTube for this direct drive turntable and other direct drive and belt drive options for plus and minus opinions.

    I had a project turntable and vintage Technics turntable and sold both this summer. May have been a mistake. Other options are Fluance and Rega. May upgrade the included cartridge to better.
    The Audio Technica LP-120XUSB is known as a great "starter" audiophile turntable, but I absolutely love mine. For $250-$300, it rocks! Cheers

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    Thanks for all the input!

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