Looking for a quality budget turntable? Paul Rigby reviews NAD’s latest, the C558
This turntable does vary in price so check out your local stores and favourite Internet retailer…
Like the C588, it bases its design on Pro-Ject parts…
A manual 2-speed deck, it’s belt driven…
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To see the video, click the image below…
Barry Slim9th May 2020 at 8:34 pm
Hi Paul, just wondered what your fave budget turntable is? I’m having great difficulty choosing between the Rega Planer’s 1, 2 & 3. I’ve also had a brief look at the new Audio Technicas – but as you say they’re ‘lifestyle’ rather than ‘audiophile’. I definitely want ‘audiophile’ as a choice. Are there any other decent budget tables out there? At present I own a JVC QL-A5 with an AT VMN 95 cartridge – is this a good choice in your opinion? However, it is old now and needs upgrading or perhaps I could stick with it if you feel there’s mileage In it yet! It runs with a Marantz PM4200 and B&W DM110 speakers. I use Chord Clearaway cable. Your advice will be greatly appreciated!😀
Paul Rigby10th May 2020 at 9:35 am
I see budget as below £1,000 (I know many others do not) but that’s because I tend to look at the big picture and the market in its entirety. There’s a gamut of designs in the higher price bracket, you see. So, with that in mind, I’d pick the Funk Firm Gett! (the exclamation mark is part of name): https://theaudiophileman.com/gett/. If you want a decision on a narrower price band, let me know.
Barry10th May 2020 at 8:43 pm
Thanks Paul, although £600 is probably a bit pricey still! I’d never heard of the Funk Firm – it does look nice, but no cartridge? Is that fair? Anyhow, as you’ve suggested you could help with a narrower price – I’d be delighted to receive your comments! Many thanks.
Paul Rigby11th May 2020 at 11:12 am
Hi Barry – sure, so what price do you have in mind Barry?
Barry11th May 2020 at 5:14 pm
Hi Paul, I was thinking around £300 – £400 which is where the Rega Planer comes into play! However, I would like to try out different cartridges and the Rega looks like it may be a bit fiddly when changing things?! As I previously said, I also thought of Audio Technica but as you mentioned – they’re lifestyle more than audiophile, and I want audiophile! I know there are more turntables out there and hopefully you’ll come up with some good choices, aside from the two mentioned! In the meantime, what do you think of my current set-up? I’d be grateful for your thoughts regarding that as well! Many thanks Paul, I look forward to your words of wisdom!
Paul Rigby12th May 2020 at 9:58 am
There are some issues in terms of third party cartridges (in terms of height) but they can be fixed by adding a ring under the tonearm which increases the tonearm’s height and levels things up a bit. It’s relatively simple to install and can be purchased from Rega, although there are third-party options. If DIY is not your thing, Rega also has its own carts for use on the Planar 1, with no modification required. These are excellent performers.
If you don’t want to go there then, for that price, the is the Pro-Ject Essentials III, the Pro-Ject Debut Carbon DC or Audio-Technica’s LP5 (https://theaudiophileman.com/at-lp5x-turntable-review-audio-technica/). All perform very well indeed.
Barry12th May 2020 at 10:44 pm
Hi Paul – sorry I’m late back with a reply but Virgin Media’s had problems in Solihull today! I like the idea that the Rega can have a different cartridge installed if necessary (my local Sevenoaks/Richer Sounds could probably deal with that) , but if you say that it’s own cart is a great performer then that’s all I need to hear! As for the Audio Technica LP5, I’ll need to check that one out, presumably it doesn’t have a USB connection? (I don’t need one!) The Project’s that you’ve mentioned look good but in so far as that type of design goes I much prefer the look of the Rega – but I’m open to persuasion! Thanks for all your advice Paul – it really will be worthwhile once I can get to my local hi-fi stores – early July? All the best and keep on rocking!