How do the vinyl records function?
Carefully examine a record. The spiraling groove is tightly packed with microscopic bumps that create a movement of the cartridge’s stylus (also referred to as the needle). The electromagnetic device in the cartridge produces electricity when the stylus moves over the groove.
Consider how complex the operation is when the cartridge’s small diamond edge has to run over the minutest of spiral bumps. Any external disturbance affects the cartridge’s ability to identify the groove accurately.
To better understand the phenomena, put the cartridge in the record without spinning it. Increase the volume of the system, and then make some disturbance like walking around the speakers or gently thumping the record. The mechanical power collected by the record player causes the noise or disturbance you hear via the speakers. The sound will annoy and irritate your ears.
When you play vinyl, this negative power is still there and becomes a part of the record player, eventually affecting the sound quality. As a result, sometimes it will affect the performance, while in severe cases, the output will be damaging for the ears and the record player.
Where should a turntable be placed?
This is a million-dollar question and, for many, a cause of concern. However, placing the turntable on a perfectly even surface is recommended. This reduces any vibrations due to uneven surfaces and protects the audio output.
If you have a concrete floor, then it’s perfect for sound audio output. However, in the case of a wooden floor, you have to compensate for footfall. Therefore, you must install a dedicated shelf to place your turntable; it will also eliminate the footfall issue.
Leveling a Turntable
After determining the optimum place for the record player, consider its perfect installation. It all comes down to getting the fundamentals right. Everything must be level to ensure that the needle lands correctly on the recording groove.
Start only with the plinth. If the surface is plain and properly configured, you don’t have to worry about anything. However, if changes are necessary, most turntables come with customizable feet, meaning you can manipulate them according to your needs.
How to Change Tracking Force
When the vinyl was more popular, people often mixed and matched certain components of the player, such as cartridges and decks. While that strategy is still feasible today, you will notice various customization options. The tale is different for lower pricing, when the cartridge is usually included, making life easy. You’ll still need to conduct some preliminary work.
The modifications for the arm and cartridge are grouped. If the cartridge is pre-installed, the only thing you must do is configure the tracking force. This is accomplished by altering the bias (sideways force) and shifting the resulting weight on the rear to accommodate the pull of the record groove.
The perfect downforce is generally between 1.5 and 2.5g, depending on weight and other similar factors. The weight mentioned before should be considered the origin point due to varying arm lengths. Due to some manufacturing flexibilities, you can also configure the system and get a better audio output.
Adjusting the Arm Height and Cartridge Alignment
Several high-end turntables let you modify the tonearm height. When playing, the arm is generally positioned side by side with the record; however, a cartridge might have a preference based on its design. However, if the arm is a bit higher, the sound will be bright and forward, and vice versa if the arm is too low.
You’ll have to make a little extra effort if the cartridge isn’t pre-fitted. A lot of cartridges are locked in place by bolts, which are tiny and easy to misplace, so use caution. Some cartridge bodies have nuts integrated into them, making installing or manipulating them easier.
How to Choose the Best Phono Preamplifier
The phono stage offers additional augmentation and balances the tones. Because vinyl cannot physically absorb high levels of bass while cutting, the song’s tone must be firmly pushed towards high frequency to make it happen. The phono stage’s task during playback is to configure this aspect.
What is the Distinction Between MC and MM Cartridges?
Any electrical interface, in this instance, the one among the cartridge and the phono stage, necessitates precise electrical parameters to ensure maximum information transfer.
Because moving-magnet cartridges have constant electrical needs, phono stage makers may build a single circuit that will fit all. However, moving coils make things more complicated. In terms of level, high-output MC designs are comparable to the MM, but low-output variations generate just a fraction of that.
Improving the sound of a turntable doesn’t require expert knowledge. However, consider the above information if you want to improve the sound of your turntable without spending a lot of cash.