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stevebrock's picture
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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

thescarletpronster wrote:
Hi everyone, thanks for your suggestions. Plenty of conflicting advice, I see! I'll have to digest it and come back with more questions. Hope that's OK. A bit more info: buying a more expensive turntable is out of the question. I bought the best I could afford. I'm wondering whether for an outlay of a max. £200 more (i.e. one of the three upgrades, PSU, phono stage or cartridge, or a selection of the others) I could significantly improve the performance of the TT I own. I simply can't afford to ditch this one and buy one twice the price, so there's no point telling me that this is what I need to do.

The Phono Stage in the Brio R is excellent and £200 isnt going to get you anything much better!

How old is your Elys 2 cart - maybe coming to the end of its life in which case I would get a Nagaoka MP150 cartridge to replace it and you have effectively got an big improvement whilst replacing a nearly worn cart

 

Michell / Icon Audio / Kudos

 

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

thescarletpronster wrote:
Hi everyone, thanks for your suggestions. Plenty of conflicting advice, I see! I'll have to digest it and come back with more questions. Hope that's OK. A bit more info: buying a more expensive turntable is out of the question. I bought the best I could afford. I'm wondering whether for an outlay of a max. £200 more (i.e. one of the three upgrades, PSU, phono stage or cartridge, or a selection of the others) I could significantly improve the performance of the TT I own. I simply can't afford to ditch this one and buy one twice the price, so there's no point telling me that this is what I need to do.

:? . . . Mmm, my way, £160 pounds will buy you a 'sub platter/thrust bearing and a white belt'. My experience tells me the white belt puts a 'similar' sort of stability into the TT as a PSU . . . £20 v £200, no contest. The other bits I have done to the sub platter cost me pennies, it was a matter of digging around in my shed in the 'useful one-day boxes', needs a bit of sideways thinking sometimes.

However, in retrospect, I might think; 'white belt, new cartridge' is a viable cost effective option, if you are not the 'sideways thinking squirrel' that I am. Then save for the sub platter. I think that the Elys might be the 'real weak link'?

CJSF

PS, Steves sugestion of an MP150 sounds like a plan, lots on here like them, in budget to.  You might be tempted with an Ortofon Blue, I had one, the top end is not good IMHO, better avoided?

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

I've considered upgrading my Rega with 'Inspire' based at Chesterfield.

Has anyone tried this? Was it worth the money?

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

Thanks, I think a cartridge upgrade when the time comes is definitely on the cards. I like what I've read on here about Nagaoka so will definitely investigate them. Based on 1000 hours for the stylus life, I reckon I've got til the end of this year before I need to replace it. I'd look at the MP150, or might even splash out and get the MP200 if that wouldn't be overkill for the RP3.

Interesting to read that the white belt can deliver an improvement similar to the PSU. Is it mainly in speed stability, then? I had the impression from what I read that the PSU actually improved the sound, although I can't quite see how that would happen.

Interesting also to read that the Fono stage doesn't deliver great improvements over the inbuilt phono stage on the Brio-R. Does anyone have a different view on that.

At the moment, the following is looking like a plan:

- white drive belt (£20) - I've just ordered one of these.
- ask my dealer if I can borrow a PSU and Fono stage for a week to see if either of them deliver significant improvements in performance.
- look to upgrade the cartridge in 6 months, probably with a Nagaoka MP of some description.

Rega RP3 / Elys 2 || Rega Brio-R || Rega Apollo-R
Monitor Audio RX6 Silver || Chord Cobra 3 interconnects || Chord Sarsen cable

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

Excellent - you are on the right track!

Get a home demo for a week on the TT PSU and Rega FONO, use 1 at a time then both together then YOU can decide if they are worth the money.

The RP3 with the RB303 will take a £1000 cartridge no problem IMO - I have an MP200 I really do rate this cart.

PS make sure uou dont use Inpout 1 on your amp with the FONO

 

Michell / Icon Audio / Kudos

 

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

stevebrock wrote:
PS make sure uou dont use Inpout 1 on your amp with the FONO

Yes, this is one of the drawbacks of using a phono stage. At the moment I use all 5 inputs on the Brio-R, so I wouldn't want to lose one. I asked above whether it would be possible to get input 1 converted from phono to line-in level so that I could plug a Fono into it - does anyone have experience of doing this (or know whether it can be done)?

Rega RP3 / Elys 2 || Rega Brio-R || Rega Apollo-R
Monitor Audio RX6 Silver || Chord Cobra 3 interconnects || Chord Sarsen cable

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

thescarletpronster wrote:
stevebrock wrote:
PS make sure uou dont use Inpout 1 on your amp with the FONO
Yes, this is one of the drawbacks of using a phono stage. At the moment I use all 5 inputs on the Brio-R, so I wouldn't want to lose one. I asked above whether it would be possible to get input 1 converted from phono to line-in level so that I could plug a Fono into it - does anyone have experience of doing this (or know whether it can be done)?

I doubt you will finf the FONO better than the Brio's phono - they are fundamentally the same - Terry Bateman at Rega has confrimed this to me in an email  - however as it has its own case & power supply if should in theory be better wether you can hear this open to opinion.

My money is on the TT PSU and Cart giving you a good upgrade vs £

 

 

 

Michell / Icon Audio / Kudos

 

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

thescarletpronster wrote:

- ask my dealer if I can borrow a PSU and Fono stage for a week to see if either of them deliver significant improvements in performance.

Wise move.

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

stevebrock wrote:

thescarletpronster wrote:
stevebrock wrote:
PS make sure uou dont use Inpout 1 on your amp with the FONO
Yes, this is one of the drawbacks of using a phono stage. At the moment I use all 5 inputs on the Brio-R, so I wouldn't want to lose one. I asked above whether it would be possible to get input 1 converted from phono to line-in level so that I could plug a Fono into it - does anyone have experience of doing this (or know whether it can be done)?

 

My money is on the TT PSU and Cart giving you a good upgrade vs £

 

 

 

 

 

I was surprised at the similarity of sound between 'white belt v PSU', personal decision here in terms of 'bang for your buck'. There was another issue for me, the PSU in those days (2 years ago) created a speaker hum, low level but it was there. The dealer tried to stop it, he even spoke to Rega and they re routed the internal PSU earth, but to no avail . . . The issue may now have been addressed, so be aware?

CJSF

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

Thanks for all your suggestions. I invested in a white drive belt, and to my amazement there was a real difference: the bass seemed tighter and punchier. I've just invested in a few upgrades from SRM-Tech (silicone mat, platter damping ring and sub-platter damping kit), and while it was difficult to discern any specific difference when I installed each one of them, I'm now hearing detail (and even instruments) I hadn't noticed in recordings before. Of course it's possible I'm just listening more carefully, but there does seem to be a more detailed presentation. That was less than £90 in total, and seems well spent.

Next up will be a cartridge upgrade, in about 6 months' time, and I'll ask you all for your recommendations towards the end of the year if that's ok.

Thanks again.

Rega RP3 / Elys 2 || Rega Brio-R || Rega Apollo-R
Monitor Audio RX6 Silver || Chord Cobra 3 interconnects || Chord Sarsen cable

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

thescarletpronster wrote:
Thanks for all your suggestions. I invested in a white drive belt, and to my amazement there was a real difference: the bass seemed tighter and punchier. I've just invested in a few upgrades from SRM-Tech (silicone mat, platter damping ring and sub-platter damping kit), and while it was difficult to discern any specific difference when I installed each one of them, I'm now hearing detail (and even instruments) I hadn't noticed in recordings before. Of course it's possible I'm just listening more carefully, but there does seem to be a more detailed presentation. That was less than £90 in total, and seems well spent. Next up will be a cartridge upgrade, in about 6 months' time, and I'll ask you all for your recommendations towards the end of the year if that's ok. Thanks again.

Excellent - get the best Nagaoka cart you can afford!

 

Michell / Icon Audio / Kudos

 

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

thescarletpronster wrote:
Thanks for all your suggestions. I invested in a white drive belt, and to my amazement there was a real difference: the bass seemed tighter and punchier. I've just invested in a few upgrades from SRM-Tech (silicone mat, platter damping ring and sub-platter damping kit), and while it was difficult to discern any specific difference when I installed each one of them, I'm now hearing detail (and even instruments) I hadn't noticed in recordings before. Of course it's possible I'm just listening more carefully, but there does seem to be a more detailed presentation. That was less than £90 in total, and seems well spent. Next up will be a cartridge upgrade, in about 6 months' time, and I'll ask you all for your recommendations towards the end of the year if that's ok. Thanks again.

 

 

Thats good, a thumbs up for the white belt and sub patter damping, try reducing the number of sections in the sub platter damping, two opposing then two more ie 4 sections. I tried this when I was still using the plastic Rega sub, to good effect, the base became more tuneful.

Not so sure about the 'platter damping belt', I tried it, it slowed the pace of the music and blurred the image for me . . . but there, if you are happy, that all that matters Wink
CJSF

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

CJSF wrote:
Not so sure about the 'platter damping belt', I tried it, it slowed the pace of the music and blurred the image for me . . .

I wonder whether we're talking about two different things? This isn't a belt but a 2mm thick silicone disc that sits on top of the sub-platter. Actually, looking on the SRM site I see there is a 'platter damping ring' which is a belt, so I've misnamed it - apologies. I can't find this product on their website but on eBay it's described as a 'platter damping [b]kit[/b]', not ring. Apologies for that.

Thanks for the tip re sub-platter sections, I'll try that when my ears are next feeling super-sharp.

stevebrock wrote:
Excellent - get the best Nagaoka cart you can afford!

 


That's quite possibly just what I'll do!

Thanks again.

Rega RP3 / Elys 2 || Rega Brio-R || Rega Apollo-R
Monitor Audio RX6 Silver || Chord Cobra 3 interconnects || Chord Sarsen cable

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

thescarletpronster wrote:
CJSF wrote:
Not so sure about the 'platter damping belt', I tried it, it slowed the pace of the music and blurred the image for me . . .
I wonder whether we're talking about two different things? This isn't a belt but a 2mm thick silicone disc that sits on top of the sub-platter. Actually, looking on the SRM site I see there is a 'platter damping ring' which is a belt, so I've misnamed it - apologies. I can't find this product on their website but on eBay it's described as a 'platter damping [b]kit[/b]', not ring. Apologies for that. Thanks for the tip re sub-platter sections, I'll try that when my ears are next feeling super-sharp.
stevebrock wrote:
Excellent - get the best Nagaoka cart you can afford!

 

 

That's quite possibly just what I'll do! Thanks again.

 

 

Yep, looks like we were talking at cross purposes, its actually an 'acrylic mat', I use one to very good effect, although mine is 3mm thick and these days is stood off the glass platter with small felt pads, here we start needing VTA adjustment, not practical with the Rega arm . . . although possible Wink  A new world best not entered into as yet.

You will be surprised how the sub-platter sections change the sound, note the word 'change', your decisions how you like the presentation?

I note you mention a silicon mat as well as the acrylic platter mat . . . you are not using them together are you?  One or the other is the idea, together, you will probably have issues with VTA as well as one negating the sound of the other????????? . . . gets confusing :doh:

CJSF

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RE: Most effective upgrade for Rega RP3?

CJSF wrote:
I note you mention a silicon mat as well as the acrylic platter mat . . . you are not using them together are you?

I think we're talking at cross-purposes again! They sell a silicone platter mat and an acrylic platter mat, both of which sit on top of the glass platter. Of these, I have only the silicone platter mat. I also have what they call the 'platter damping kit', which is a silicone disc (they supply 1mm- and 2mm-thick versions) that sits on top of the sub-platter, underneath the glass platter - intended to isolate the glass platter from vibrations coming from the motor through the plastic sub-platter.

Between these two, there is an extra 5mm of height. However, the arm still looks dead horizontal. I'm not sure how to measure whether it needs any VTA adjustment - do you have any tips for determining that?

Rega RP3 / Elys 2 || Rega Brio-R || Rega Apollo-R
Monitor Audio RX6 Silver || Chord Cobra 3 interconnects || Chord Sarsen cable

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