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Turntable system building -> Phono stage advice appreciated
Turntable system building -> Phono stage advice appreciated
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Old 18th February 2014, 07:04 PM   #1
stpeter is offline stpeter  United States
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Default Turntable system building -> Phono stage advice appreciated

Hi folks,

I'm working on (re)building my primary system. I started on either end and I'm working my way towards the middle, and have hit some snaggs.

Speakers will be "Popeye" (half-olivia) spawn family with fostex FE127E 4 inch full range drivers.

Turntable-> Harman/Kardon t-40 with unknown cartridge (for now. Seller said it was an older Ortofon, but I cannot find any markings to indicate) likely will invest in new cart soon.

So, as i said, I have the main input and the output end, but i need to populate the middle. I was looking to see if you good people had any advice for what works/doesn't work sounds good/bad. I don't have a lot of experience trying to build a system around a turn table. In the past its always been: turntable->vintage "mid-fi" amp -> multi-way speakers. I want to step it up a notch and get a little better than that.

I would like to keep it relatively cheap if possible, but doesn't everybody? I would love to build the rest of this system for less than $500 if I can.

My current thoughts were:

Amp -> Chip amp. Probably with LM3875. I built one for my big system with the LM3886, I like it. Gain clones are cheap and easy to build. The drivers are pretty efficient, so I don't need crazy amounts of power. And the room is pretty small, so it doesn't need to move a ton of air either. I was also considering a "t" class amp, but I can't find a good source for kits other than 41hz and I can't really tell if they are still shipping units or not. I would like to find a kit; I built my first one point to point from schematics, it was alright, but if I could buy everything in one package, It would be better.

Phono-Stage -> yet unknown. I can really only find a couple of kits (boozehound and Bugle2 mainly). I have found a few others that are from schematics, which i could do, but i was hoping to find a kit for simplicity. I have read good reviews for the boozehound lab, but its near the upper end of what I would like to pay.

Preamp -> If the phonostage will get the levels up high enough, I was thinking passive preamp (knob for volume and mayhaps a switch for one additional input). that would be the easy route. If not, I'll have to find a simple pre-amp to put in.

I appreciate any help you can give me. if this is in the wrong place, I apologize. I couldn't really think of a better place to put it, as It kind of covers topics all over the place. Thanks again.
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Old 18th February 2014, 11:00 PM   #2
Bibio is offline Bibio  Scotland
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Join Date: Mar 2009
if you want a kit for the phono stage then have a look for 'phonoclone and vsps'. very simple to build.
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Old 19th February 2014, 12:41 PM   #3
stpeter is offline stpeter  United States
diyAudio Member
Join Date: Jan 2008
Thanks Bibio, the vsps looks to be about right. I'll keep that in mind as i build up the rest.

Thanks again
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