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Garrad turntable help needed please

kid rock

Novice Member
After a big sortout of our loft the other day( 250 square meters). I found a Garrard turntable gt 35p and about 200 lps all 1970s stuff .We think the previous owner forgot them but he is dead and his wife claims their not hers. Any way I have tried to set it up to my Arcam a90 which has a phono stage and the quality of playback is mediocre and there is some significant humming even though I earthed it. I think it probably needs a new cartridge and the tonarm looks a bit too lightweight to be any good but I am keen to restore the turntable as it seems a shame to throw it.

Does anyone know how I do this as I am totally lost. Can i buy any cartridge and tonarm for it or are there other things I need to know. i am a total novice when it comes to vinyl. How do i stop the humming is this down to the cartridge and tonarm or something else????



Thanks for any help.
 

CJROSS

Well-known Member

alexs2

Well-known Member
You may well have an earth loop which is giving you the excess hum,and it may well be worth checking all the earth connections between your turntable and amp,and seeing which is possibly giving rise to the problem.

A lot of the older Garrards,especially the 301 and 401 are quite sought after,and worth spending money on,but other than those,it may be a less viable proposition.

Depending on the model,you can buy new plinths,tonearms and suitable cartridges,and the likelihood is if this one has spent a lot of time in your loft,that it won't be performing well...CJROSS and I would both tell you that a good,well set-up vinyl system can often easily outperform similarly priced CD.

The vinyl collection is also worth looking through,to see if there are any of value in there,and sites like www.vivante.com may give you some idea of possible value,although it is mainly aimed at collectors.
eBay traditionally seems to have pretty low value for vinyl,unless it's something really sought after.
 

CJROSS

Well-known Member
alexs2 said:
Depending on the model,you can buy new plinths,tonearms and suitable cartridges,and the likelihood is if this one has spent a lot of time in your loft,that it won't be performing well...CJROSS and I would both tell you that a good,well set-up vinyl system can often easily outperform similarly priced CD.
Actually I would say a £400 TT will outperform CD player up to £1000 from what Ive heard Alex. After that it becomes subjective. Well worth getting back to full fitness though IMHO.
 

alexs2

Well-known Member
CJROSS said:
Actually I would say a £400 TT will outperform CD player up to £1000 from what Ive heard Alex. After that it becomes subjective. Well worth getting back to full fitness though IMHO.
Wouldnt disagree with that!....as for fitness I think it would depend on the model,and I dont know much about anything other than the 301/401.
 

kid rock

Novice Member
CJROSS said:
Actually I would say a £400 TT will outperform CD player up to £1000 from what Ive heard Alex. After that it becomes subjective. Well worth getting back to full fitness though IMHO.
Hmmm this is interesting. I have to say I am going to update this Garrard -the 1970s retro looks alone mean its too good to chuck away.. I am not sure it will ever perform to the level of my Shanling cd player cdt 100 though -which is a 1700 pounds machine but we will see. I found a receipt for it and it was bought in 1978 for 125 pounds. As for the lps I have had time to look at, I now have all Bowie vinyl from the 70s as well as Pink Floyd, Simon and Garfunkel , Jethro Tull all in pristine condition there is one from a soul artist -Gene Page "hot City" 1974 produced by Barry White thats never been opened and is still in the sellophane wrapper!!!! .


Guys I also wanted to know if any mc cartridge would fit it I mean if I bought say a high output mc cartridge from Denon would this be ok. The existing cartridge can be removed and has 4 small pins at the end of it which are then pushed into the tonarm and tightened its a TP4 I think fom my very limited knowledge.



Thanks for your help
Kid Rock
 

CJROSS

Well-known Member
kid rock said:
Guys I also wanted to know if any mc cartridge would fit it I mean if I bought say a high output mc cartridge from Denon would this be ok. The existing cartridge can be removed and has 4 small pins at the end of it which are then pushed into the tonarm and tightened its a TP4 I think fom my very limited knowledge.
Reading the brochure for the A90 says that the phono stage (optionally fitted) is both MM/MC so yes you can fit a Denon MC cart, I assume you mean the £100 DL-103 MC cart, this is what I would be fitting MC wise.

If you have never changed a cart before, then I would urge some caution you will need a :

Alignment protactor to suit your arm of your Garrard.
Needle nose pliers (for cartridge tags)
Small socket for headshell bolts

Read up on it on the net before trying yourself (you will find loads of installation help for TTs by simply searching google with LP12. maybe worth getting a current Garrard dealer to do it for you and to watch him install the cart. Or you can be gungho and try yourself (you have to start somewhere dude) whatever you decide to do, get googling on as much info as your brain can store.
 

kid rock

Novice Member
Thanks CJRoss for your help. I am off work sick following surgery and this little project is keeping me sane. Thought you might like to know that I cured the humming by connecting a decent pair of Atlas voyager interconnects to the amp and the turntable this morning and the sound has really improved 1 million percent.I played Mike Oldields original Tubular bells on vinyl from my acquired collection and i achieved a decent stereo image and good bass. Thanks for the tips on the cartridge. I might take the Garrard to my local dealer and take some advice after reading a bit about this on Google.

Kid rock
 

Beobloke

Active Member
Hmm, Well as a huge Garrard fan (yes, yes, OK then - i suppose having owned/restored/repaired over 80 different models qualifies me as more of an anorak!) i was very keen to see the subject title here, but then equally sad to see the Gt35p mentioned!

Sadly this turntable dates from Garrard's cheap and nasty era before they finally went bust in 1979 and whilst i have no doubt you can obtain some reasonable results from it through cartridge and interconnect changes, it really isn't worth spending too much money on. I am actually surprised that yours manages to go round at the right speed as all of the 3 i have owned at one time or another would randomly start spinning at around 130rpm whenever they felt like it! :eek:

Enjoy it and enjoy fiddling with it by all means, but bear in mind the cheapest Pro-ject deck or even a secondhand budget unit of the likes of a Dual CS505, Ariston Q-Deck or even the good old Pioneer PL-12D (the appearance of which helped bring about Garrard's downfall) will easliy sonically outperform it.

Finally the chaps at www.garrard501.com can only help with 301's and 401's as well as the new 501 - they do not service or stock any spares for any of the other older units.
 

kid rock

Novice Member
Beobloke said:
Sadly this turntable dates from Garrard's cheap and nasty era before they finally went bust in 1979 and whilst i have no doubt you can obtain some reasonable results from it through cartridge and interconnect changes, it really isn't worth spending too much money on. I am actually surprised that yours manages to go round at the right speed as all of the 3 i have owned at one time or another would randomly start spinning at around 130rpm whenever they felt like it! :eek:

Enjoy it and enjoy fiddling with it by all means, but bear in mind the cheapest Pro-ject deck or even a secondhand budget unit of the likes of a Dual CS505, Ariston Q-Deck or even the good old Pioneer PL-12D (the appearance of which helped bring about Garrard's downfall) will easliy sonically outperform it.

Dont forget I found this and the vinyl in the loft so I am already quids in and so what if I spend about 100 quid on it the alternative would be to spend this money on a Project debut or something which I dont think has any of the retro 70s charm . I think its been well looked after just forgotten about and seems to work for now.As an early convert to cd I havent had any real experience of vinyl - (as you see from my post) apart from my teens and early twenties with some ancient Technics kit and about 100 lps all lost somewhere now.- and want to see how i get on with this little project first. Who knows I may even go for something a lot more desirable in the future if this whets my appetite.

Thanks for your post

Kid Rock
 

karkus30

Banned
Chuck turntable in direction of bin. The s/h hi fi shop I used to frequent used to refuse to take them in and pointed owners in the direction of a car boot sale. Really, do not spend anything on it. 401s etc do have some merit, but a modern turntable would still cost a fraction of the money needed to turn even one of these things into a high performance machine.

Something like an linn LP12, Roksan Xerxes etc with a reasonable arm can be had for around £350.

In the case of budget turntables out performing mid price CD players I do have my doubts, however this applies to modern turntables not budget era 70s machines..........remember, all that glitters..........
 

BigAde

Active Member
kid rock said:
Dont forget I found this and the vinyl in the loft so I am already quids in and so what if I spend about 100 quid on it the alternative would be to spend this money on a Project debut or something which I dont think has any of the retro 70s charm . I think its been well looked after just forgotten about and seems to work for now.As an early convert to cd I havent had any real experience of vinyl - (as you see from my post) apart from my teens and early twenties with some ancient Technics kit and about 100 lps all lost somewhere now.- and want to see how i get on with this little project first. Who knows I may even go for something a lot more desirable in the future if this whets my appetite.

Thanks for your post

Kid Rock
I agree wholeheartedly with Beobloke... the Garrard model you have there is the turntable equivalent of a Trabant. No snobbery about it, it's simply a cheaply made disc-spinner for the mass-market. It never DID sound good and it never WILL sound good (even with £100 spent on it).

If you want retro 70's charm, look around your local second-hand hi-fi shop or car boot sale... there are loads of examples out there which will easily outperform your model. There are some still serviceable classic audiophile decks out there an old 301/401 would be good, a Thorens TD124 would be even better (if you're lucky enough to find one!)... Even more affordable models like the Pioneer PL12d, Goldring Lenco and Thorens TD160 would be a better bet than the GT35p.... Enjoy the free vinyl, but don't waste your money on that deck. :)
 

karkus30

Banned
BigAde said:
There are some still serviceable classic audiophile decks out there an old 301/401 would be good, a Thorens TD124 would be even better (if you're lucky enough to find one!)... Even more affordable models like the Pioneer PL12d, Goldring Lenco and Thorens TD160 would be a better bet than the GT35p.... Enjoy the free vinyl, but don't waste your money on that deck. :)
I was struggling to remember the Thorens and Goldring models........all really nice retro turntables. Or perhaps an Oracle Delphi (sold mine for about £500 with a decent arm). The Systemdeks were nice too. Or you could get a Pink Triangle and a big bag of glue and nails :D
 

337GUS

Active Member
karkus30 said:
Or you could get a Pink Triangle and a big bag of glue and nails :D
My PT Original is still doing the business 20 plus years on! :D

Gus
 

karkus30

Banned
337GUS said:
My PT Original is still doing the business 20 plus years on! :D

Gus
I was talking about the turntable not your wife :)

I love them to bits, but most PT stuff just seems to fall apart if you so much as breath on it, so your doing really well to keep that going so long.
 

kid rock

Novice Member
Just to let you all know I bought a Thorens td 850 and gave the Garrard to the music dept of my sons school I hope they dont suffer for this. The Thorens so far has impressed me enormously albeit my Shanling cdt 100 still has not lost its prime position in my set up. I have listened to a lot of the vinyl i have acquired eg some of the vinyl stuff from New York Dolls and good old Bowie and Iggy Pop sounds awesome on my new Thorens.

Happy

Kid Rock
 

alexs2

Well-known Member
kid rock said:
Just to let you all know I bought a Thorens td 850 and gave the Garrard to the music dept of my sons school I hope they dont suffer for this. The Thorens so far has impressed me enormously albeit my Shanling cdt 100 still has not lost its prime position in my set up. I have listened to a lot of the vinyl i have acquired eg some of the vinyl stuff from New York Dolls and good old Bowie and Iggy Pop sounds awesome on my new Thorens.

Happy

Kid Rock
Good to find another pleased convert to the world of vinyl....hope you continue to enjoy it,and don't find the upgrade bug bites there as well!
 

karkus30

Banned
kid rock said:
Just to let you all know I bought a Thorens td 850 and gave the Garrard to the music dept of my sons school I hope they dont suffer for this. The Thorens so far has impressed me enormously albeit my Shanling cdt 100 still has not lost its prime position in my set up. I have listened to a lot of the vinyl i have acquired eg some of the vinyl stuff from New York Dolls and good old Bowie and Iggy Pop sounds awesome on my new Thorens.

Happy

Kid Rock
Well done, a proper turntable. What cart did you fit ? do you have it on a vibration free surface ? Interesting that you still rate the CD player, it takes a while to get what vinyl is all about, the first thoughts are usually how lacking in power and attack the turntable sounds compared to the effervescent CD replay.............and then you notice.......... :D
 

kid rock

Novice Member
karkus30 said:
Well done, a proper turntable. What cart did you fit ? do you have it on a vibration free surface ? Interesting that you still rate the CD player, it takes a while to get what vinyl is all about, the first thoughts are usually how lacking in power and attack the turntable sounds compared to the effervescent CD replay.............and then you notice.......... :D
I bought the tp300 tonarm and a Sumiko Oyster mm cartridge. Its on top of a Soundstyle status rack and has a good Atlas Voyager cable connecting it to the amp. My wifes gone a bit mental about the latest edition to the house but there you go....

As for still rating the Shanling Cdt 100 player it is a very analogue warmish sounding player as it has a valve tube output as well as normal solid state connection to the amp. The Uk hifi press havent really reviewed it but here in Germany its a bit of a star in the serious hifi press . I love the sound from the valve tubes especially with classical and acoustic.

I can only form some early first impressions of the Thorens as i have only just got it and they are that its a dynamic but refined sound that is great with 70s rock. Black Sabbath vol 4 sounds superb for example. I havent listened to anything else in depth cos i just havent had the time. I think I need a free day to play with it a bit more. It looks stunning though!!!!!

Kid rock
 

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