USB turntables

vbimport

#1

Hi :slight_smile:

I have a lot of LP, and some of these are not available anymore, neither as CD.

My old turntable gave up a long time ago, but my heart is crying seeing all these discs collecting dust on the shelf :sad:

I was thinking to get an USB turntable to “rip” my LPs to the computer, so I can listen again my music :slight_smile:

Because of after a quick search I saw that prices are not exactly cheap, my doubt is: is it really worth? What about audio quality? To rip LP is needed a good quality audio card or everything is done by the turntable electronics? What I should check in features to be sure that product is valid?

Is it better to get a “regular” turntable and a good quality audio acquisition card or an USB turntable is good enough?

TIA :slight_smile:


#2

When I volunteered as a jazz DJ in the local non-profit radio station as a graduate student, I asked some of the older and more experienced DJ’s about this. Most of them preferred using quality turntables and needles and running the sound through a dedicated outboard sound card/module. Then they would spend up to a week per LP splitting tracks, adjusting the volume, getting rid of the hiss and cracks and pops and so forth.

So really the question boils down to how fussy you are about making a hi fidelity recording of the original LP and how much time and money you want to spend.


#3

I haven’t looked into USB turntables so I don’t know how they handle the following.
I also have almost no LPs in good enough condition that I would want to attempt copying them . I mostly have kept them for the nostalgia & covers.

I already have a good regular turntable so if I was going this route it is what I would use .

What I’ve read is either the turntable with internal preamp(switchable on a good one) or an inline preamp needs to be in place & the sound card needs “Phono” input jacks.
Or the sound card needs to have a preamp on board built for this & “Phono” input jacks.
Older receiver/amps had those seperate jacks for “Phono” . This is because a turntables output is very low . This is what eliminates some of the noise being amplified in the turntable .


#4

Generally it isn’t worth doing on any album that has
been re-released on CD.

And this from someone who has several spare dynaco preamps
and a broadcast quality turntable.

(I wonder where I could buy another grace carbon fiber tone arm without a time machine?)


#5

[QUOTE=geno888;2659273]Hi :slight_smile:

I have a lot of LP, and some of these are not available anymore, neither as CD.

My old turntable gave up a long time ago, but my heart is crying seeing all these discs collecting dust on the shelf :sad:

I was thinking to get an USB turntable to “rip” my LPs to the computer, so I can listen again my music :slight_smile:

Because of after a quick search I saw that prices are not exactly cheap, my doubt is: is it really worth? What about audio quality? To rip LP is needed a good quality audio card or everything is done by the turntable electronics? What I should check in features to be sure that product is valid?

Is it better to get a “regular” turntable and a good quality audio acquisition card or an USB turntable is good enough?

TIA :)[/QUOTE]

The quality of the turntable always makes an impact on the quality of the final result as do the other electronics you’ll need as these are your source.

Turntables don’t deliver a high enough output level for you to be able to record directly from them without some form of pre-amplification and the quality of the preamp will also impact on the final sound.

You can record the output from your HiFi system or there’s a method where you can use a cassette recorder as a workaround but life starts to get complicated and potentially expensive if you don’t already have the equipment or the cables.

It took me a while finding this but I knew I’d seen a reasonably cheap USB turntable a while ago that got good reviews.

Have a look at this review from Computer Shopper magazine.

USB turntables have all the necessary pre-amplification and RIAA audio equalisations built in and they’re a relatively cheap option that provides good results.

As has been said above though it’s probably not worth the effort for stuff that has already been re-released on CD.

[B]Wombler[/B]


#6

Thanks all for answers :slight_smile:

I think that the best solution is to get a regular turntable and a HiFi amplifier then :slight_smile:

I’ll have a look around to find something at a nice price :bigsmile:

I can’t save the music on HDD, but I can listen for the music, that is what I want mostly :iagree:


#7

[QUOTE=geno888;2659408]Thanks all for answers :slight_smile:

I think that the best solution is to get a regular turntable and a HiFi amplifier then :slight_smile:

I’ll have a look around to find something at a nice price :bigsmile:

I can’t save the music on HDD, but I can listen for the music, that is what I want mostly :iagree:[/QUOTE]

You could always save it on DVD…cough cough


#8

You might look at this one .It is both USB & analog . It has the switchable preamp .
So it should be able to use your sound card or USB . That way you could see which recorded the best sound to you .

http://www.audio-technica.com/cms/turntables/583f30b3a8662772/

The same company makes a much cheaper one as well but this should give you a good one to compare with .


#9

:eek: As usual, prices in Italy are ugliest :doh:

It is anyway a very interesting product :iagree:

Just for curiosity: currently I’m using the onboard audio card (this is the mainboard): should I install anyway a discrete audio card?


#10

@ geno888 ,
Pretty pricey compared to the one Amazon has in the US.
As I said the same manufacturer has a much cheaper model but I don’t think it is what you want .The tone arm quality is much less & I suspect the cartridge is too.

If you can find a good quality regular turntable even used that might be the best solution. It would be better if it had a switchable preamp .
With the right sound card even that wouldn’t be necessary.
For your motherboard the minimum is a line in that is not for a microphone . I couldn’t tell if your has this from the link. If you have that then you will need the turntable to have a preamp. They do make inline preamps if you get a turntable without one but that is another expense.


#11

I assume that Sony and Pioneer are good brands for this stuff.

The pioneer has no USB connection however

I wonder if this is a decent amplifier to be used for a turntable without USB port :confused:


#12

@ geno888,
You misunderstand the type amp needed to input the signal from the turntable to a line-in jack on your computer .
What you posted as a sample is just a regular audio amp to power speakers.

This is an example of a preamp like you will need:
preamp

The Sony link went to an download site & the Pioneer Amazon was in Italian .
My much older Pioneer turntable still works fine or did the last time I used it(several years ago). So I don’t have actual experence at doing this
The subject interested me even before this post so I had researched it .


#13

Geno, I’ve gone straight from an old turntable to the back of my computer’s LINE-IN or MIC-IN plug, using a stereo Y-adapter, similar to:

I adjusted the volume later (I think I did it in ten-percent increments - 110%, then another 110% - which is roughly a 10% gain each time) until it was loud enough for my purposes. I also clipped up each track and did FADE-IN and FADE-OUT , so each track was a standalone WAV.


#14

[QUOTE=ChristineBCW;2659614]Geno, I’ve gone straight from an old turntable to the back of my computer’s LINE-IN or MIC-IN plug, using a stereo Y-adapter, similar to:

I adjusted the volume later (I think I did it in ten-percent increments - 110%, then another 110% - which is roughly a 10% gain each time) until it was loud enough for my purposes. I also clipped up each track and did FADE-IN and FADE-OUT , so each track was a standalone WAV.[/QUOTE]

I wonder can Geno use something like this. Interface mixer preamp $69.99. Just use your turntable. Hooks up to PC.

http://www.dak.com/reviews/2020storyT.cfm

Mr.Bill :slight_smile:


#15

@ChristineBCW ,
I have done similar with a cassete player & it worked .
Still only a line-in & not mic-in should be used for this .
Unless it is a jack that does both & “autoswitches” by detection of correct “voltage”.
Worth at try though the worst is it won’t work.
If it is detected as a mic there will be a small currect sent to the turntable .
This is what would be used to power the mic . The effects of this may vary depending on the turntable.
If the computer detects the turntable as a line-in source then the only problem might be too litle power from the turntable . That would be obvious because the recording would be weak.

@ Mr.Bill , That is a preamp with some mixing capability . Probably as good or better than the one I posted.


#16

I found this article that explains some on connecting a standalone:
http://manual.audacityteam.org/man/How_to_connect_your_equipment


#17

oops sorry for bad link, I fixed it :doh:

About the amplifier what fooled me was the USB connection on it :o

I’ll try to find something in local stores, so if it doesn’t work I can return it easily (it is less complicated than returning to an online store).

ChristineBCW, I should have one of these cables somewhere, I can do a quick test before to purchase costly stuff :iagree:


#18

@ geno888 , This is from the link in post # 16 . It explains why the cable only does work but the sound is not corrected when done this way.

If you have a standalone turntable, you must not connect it directly to your computer. Instead, you must connect it to an amplifier or receiver with a “phono” or turntable input, or to a phono pre-amplifier - and then record from the amplifier’s “line out” or “tape out” jacks. This is for two reasons: (1) the audio signals produced by a phono cartridge are too weak to record directly, and (2) most records manufactured from the 1950s onwards were produced with a standard type of equalization called “RIAA”, which emphasizes high frequencies and de-emphasizes (reduces) low frequencies. If left uncorrected, this will result in a recording that sounds very “tinny”. All amplifiers containing a “phono” stage will both boost the signal to line-level so it’s suitable for input into a tape deck or a computer, and will reverse the RIAA equalization so that the records sound “normal” again. If you have an integrated “stack system” or “entertainment center” into which you plug your speakers, your record deck is already connected to a suitable amplifier.


#19

I wonder if trying to find the equivalent of my LP in CD format is less costly :bigsmile:

However, even if CD is certainly less cumbersome, I still would like to listen for the LP. I’m not an audio purist, but I can’t see why I should purchase again music I already have :doh:

I’ll try to find an amplifier in local stores, hoping to find something at a decent price :slight_smile:


#20

[QUOTE=cholla;2659730]@ geno888 , This is from the link in post # 16 . It explains why the cable only does work but the sound is not corrected when done this way.[/QUOTE]

That’s basically what I was saying in post#5 above. :iagree:

You need the proper RIAA equalisations to get the proper sound so it either has to have it built in like with the USB turntable I’d mentioned earlier or you have to feed it through a suitable amplifier or preamp.

In any case, as mentioned, the power output from nearly all turntables isn’t enough to record directly from.

[B]Wombler[/B]