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More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

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CJSF's picture
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A few more sessions listening to music as presented with the 'Ceramic bearing' in place has confirmed my initial very positive reaction across a a wide range of music. The extra dynamics seems to often manifest its self as 'more volume', needing to turn the volume down a little at night.

A big plus has been reduced 'vinyl noise' plus clicks and pops are far less obvious? Why this should be I dont know, made very obvious this afternoon, I have a well loved 1973 Syd Lawrence recording, 'a Tribute to Glenn Miller', as I say, well loved and well played, but very noisy. Not any more, the ceramic bearing has breathed new live into the quiet of the 'big band sound', imaging the dynamics on such a record.

As I type, I'm listening to Enya's, 'Water Mark', the quietness is even more obvious, stunning . . .

CJSF

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

If it works and is a big improvement then amaybe Rega should consider it in their manufacturing or is there a reason why they don't use them, ie do not last so long or issues with quality?

 

I'm surprised that a bearing can reduce the vinyl noise so much?

CJSF's picture
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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

BigH wrote:

If it works and is a big improvement then amaybe Rega should consider it in their manufacturing or is there a reason why they don't use them, ie do not last so long or issues with quality?

 

I'm surprised that a bearing can reduce the vinyl noise so much?

One suspects a ball bearing is cheaper than a ceramic jobbie, there may be an issue on wear, although I have been told ceramic is the next hardest to diamond??  I also believe my highly tuned P5 probably shows the differences more obviously than a standard unit?

I too am surprised at the reduction in vinyl noise, although I have seen it reported elsewhere.  Begs a question in my mind; 'is what we hear as vinyl/surface noise actual that, is it bearing noise or a combination of bearing and surface noise'? . . . you could have knocked me over with a feather when I put Syd Lawrence on.  I know it is (was) a noisey recording, its what made me bother to report, no one relay seems to care?  I am wondering if the smoothness of the ceramic has married the other changes together, making the sum of the parts greater than the whole?  My GT sub platter bearing has a ceramic insert at the bottom so the presure contact is ceramict to ceramic, not a standard metal to ceramic, could this help?

CJSF

 

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

CSJF, I am genuinely interested in the point about the ceramic bottom on the GT SubPlatter? Is this how they come as standard??

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CJSF's picture
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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

stevebrock wrote:

CSJF, I am genuinely interested in the point about the ceramic bottom on the GT SubPlatter? Is this how they come as standard??

 

It cerainly was when I ordered mine 12 months ago, I looked at the spec, a couple of weeks back and believe they mentioned in the blurb . . .

Dont forget, I have don little tweaks to my GT SP, all tiny improvements but as a whole they make a differance.  All these upgrades have been listed here at some time or the other . . . as I have also said, no one seemed bothered, I was mostly ridiculed and my spelling was laughed at . . .  banging head against wall  Be that as it may, I have a bl**dy good sounding TT.

 

CJSF

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

i never riduculed you, but I have an idea who did, Kudos to you for all the little tweaks, its a good deck out of the box for the money and you seem to like tweaking like myself!

 

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

Went to install my ceramic bearing and the damned old one won't come out – I did it before with a straw — no such luck this time.

 

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

jcarruthers wrote:

Went to install my ceramic bearing and the damned old one won't come out – I did it before with a straw — no such luck this time.

 

suck harder lol

 

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

jcarruthers wrote:

Went to install my ceramic bearing and the damned old one won't come out – I did it before with a straw — no such luck this time.

 

 

Metal bearing, small 5 or 6mm magnet glued to a piece of dowel, get them on ebay or a good model shop, purse and bag fastenings, alternatively a small electric motor has magnets inside.  You could make a temporary magnet by stroking a nail over a permanent magnet a good few times, the more the better.  Thats also a tip for keeping small screws on a screwdiver puting it in a dificult place.  I keep an old speaker magnet on the side for stroking screwdivers and finding screws I drop on the floor.

Ruby bearing, use a length of silicon tube, 4mm id, no more than 7mm od, at least 3" long,  it pushes over the ball which comes out with the tube.

Dont forget to clean out the old oil and the well with a cotton bud, new oil about 7 drops, so they tell me, also oil the bearing shaft before you re insert it.

Just measured a standard party straw, id is about 4.5mm, put a small vertical split in one side about 4-5mm long, it will pushover the 4.75mm bearing, might just have enough grip to hold onto the bearing to lift out carfully?

CJSF

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

As you're removing the old bearing, try soaking it with WD40 for a while, and you might try to dislodge it with the stem of a cotton bud, without the cotton bud on, obviously, before using the straw to extract it. Good luck.  

 CJSF, did you use the oil supplied with your ceramic bearing? I changed the bearing on my Planar 3 last night, and it looked like Duckhams 20/50 to me - quite thick and viscous. I still have the oil from AO, used when I cleaned out the bearing of my Planar 3 last year, and which is much thinner, but I'm trying the thicker oil, just in case. I've seen several discussions on bearing oil, but no definitive advice as to whether thick is better than thin. As I've quite a bit spare, I'll try the thin AO oil in a month or two.

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

GeoffreyW wrote:

As you're removing the old bearing, try soaking it with WD40 for a while, and you might try to dislodge it with the stem of a cotton bud, without the cotton bud on, obviously, before using the straw to extract it. Good luck.  

 CJSF, did you use the oil supplied with your ceramic bearing? I changed the bearing on my Planar 3 last night, and it looked like Duckhams 20/50 to me - quite thick and viscous. I still have the oil from AO, used when I cleaned out the bearing of my Planar 3 last year, and which is much thinner, but I'm trying the thicker oil, just in case. I've seen several discussions on bearing oil, but no definitive advice as to whether thick is better than thin. As I've quite a bit spare, I'll try the thin AO oil in a month or two.

I have a thin full synthetic oil that I use, I dont like the idea of 20/50 viscosity, personal preferance in my thinking, I have not tried thick oil.  I have use such oils in model model aircraft engines, when I used to race such beasties, the lighter synthetis were mesurably suprior.

CJSF

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

Great to see you are eeking extra performance out of the deck.

 

Everything in a turntable has an influence on the sound, colouring and excentuating/dissolving elements of the orginal information, as well as adding their own noise.

 

Companies like Well Tempered use Teflon main bearings (implemented in an entirely logical manner when you read into it!), and avoid conventional metal upon metal bearings in the tonearm in the pursuit of getting the turntable out of the way of the music!

 

 

Sadly a lot of turntable manufacturers won't think outside of the box nowadays.

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CJSF's picture
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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

AlbaBrown wrote:

Great to see you are eeking extra performance out of the deck.

 

Everything in a turntable has an influence on the sound, colouring and excentuating/dissolving elements of the orginal information, as well as adding their own noise.

 

Companies like Well Tempered use Teflon main bearings (implemented in an entirely logical manner when you read into it!), and avoid conventional metal upon metal bearings in the tonearm in the pursuit of getting the turntable out of the way of the music!

 

 

Sadly a lot of turntable manufacturers won't think outside of the box nowadays.

Hi AlbaBrown, yep, the more I do, the more I realise how importanf the tiny changes and tweakes I make are.  My TT thrust bearing is now ceramic on ceramic, the arm bearings are also ceramic ball races . . . All contributing their little bit to the whole, I must say the past few weeks have been very gratifying as the TT has raised its game.

CJSF

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

And there's me with some 10k york weights sitting on 2 old records for the last 24hours so I can just play them! 

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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

Thanks, CJSF.  As the oil came with the ceramic bearing, I've no idea what it's viscosity actually is, but it is quite thick. Whether the seller's done any serious research on the best oil for his ceramic bearing, I can only guess. And as the idea is to minimise friction and drag where possible, I think I'll swap it for the much thinner Audio Origami oil. 

I do have some Castrol R, from my motorcycling days many years ago (it went into the petrol tank, for the authentic aroma of a racing bike, as I'm sure you'll know), but it's not really suitable for this application, I feel. And definitely NO 3-in-1. 

The new bearing does seem to be having a positive effect on the sound, though; more precise starting & stopping, cleaner notes. Les Brown & His Band of Renown, and the "Fame" re-issue of The Shadows' first LP sound better than ever. 

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CJSF's picture
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RE: More listening to the 'Ceramic Bearing'

GeoffreyW wrote:

Thanks, CJSF.  As the oil came with the ceramic bearing, I've no idea what it's viscosity actually is, but it is quite thick. Whether the seller's done any serious research on the best oil for his ceramic bearing, I can only guess. And as the idea is to minimise friction and drag where possible, I think I'll swap it for the much thinner Audio Origami oil. 

I do have some Castrol R, from my motorcycling days many years ago (it went into the petrol tank, for the authentic aroma of a racing bike, as I'm sure you'll know), but it's not really suitable for this application, I feel. And definitely NO 3-in-1. 

The new bearing does seem to be having a positive effect on the sound, though; more precise starting & stopping, cleaner notes. Les Brown & His Band of Renown, and the "Fame" re-issue of The Shadows' first LP sound better than ever. 

Thats sounding like very positive results for less than a tenner and a very simple mod . . .  beauty, eh

CJSF