connecting turntable to console

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joninc
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connecting turntable to console

Post by joninc » Wed Jan 08, 2020 5:28 pm

I would like to have a turntable in the studio and rather then setup a dedicated stereo with amp and speakers it seems smarter to connect to 2 channels on my Soundcraft Ghost Board but I assume i'll need some sort of phono preamp between the 2? Any workarounds or affordable solutions that sound decent?

I listen to vinyl in my house all the time and would like to be able to do the same in the studio...
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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by losthighway » Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:06 pm

joninc wrote:
Wed Jan 08, 2020 5:28 pm
I would like to have a turntable in the studio and rather then setup a dedicated stereo with amp and speakers it seems smarter to connect to 2 channels on my Soundcraft Ghost Board but I assume i'll need some sort of phono preamp between the 2? Any workarounds or affordable solutions that sound decent?

I listen to vinyl in my house all the time and would like to be able to do the same in the studio...
You can just get a couple female RCA to male 1/4" plugs for a few bucks each and plug that sucker into your TRS inputs, then gain it up!

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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by joninc » Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:10 pm

really? Isn't there some sort of impedance mismatch?
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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by winky dinglehoffer » Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:33 pm

Unless your turntable has a line out, it won't work right just to hook it up direct. ART used to make (still makes?) a little phono pre, and I'm sure there are others. Quality will vary, as will price. Small DJ mixers can often be found for next to nothing & will give you an adequate phono pre if you have room enough for the DJ mixer.

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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by losthighway » Wed Jan 08, 2020 8:46 pm

joninc wrote:
Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:10 pm
really? Isn't there some sort of impedance mismatch?
Oh yeah, good question. I haven't done this since I was in college, but it sounded fine then. Then again, it was 15 years ago and I was kind of dumb.

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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by losthighway » Wed Jan 08, 2020 8:47 pm

winky dinglehoffer wrote:
Wed Jan 08, 2020 7:33 pm
Unless your turntable has a line out, it won't work right just to hook it up direct. ART used to make (still makes?) a little phono pre, and I'm sure there are others. Quality will vary, as will price. Small DJ mixers can often be found for next to nothing & will give you an adequate phono pre if you have room enough for the DJ mixer.
Oh yeah there's a Beringer for $25. You wouldn't want to talk to the audiophiles about using it, but it probably gets the job done if you're just wanting to hang out and listen to some records before a session.

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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by Nick Sevilla » Thu Jan 09, 2020 12:06 am

Some consoles can accept this type of input. consult your manual.
In my case, my Allen & Heath 8200 series can accept anything in the line input, from pro level, to guitars, to turntables. Found out the long way (not reading the manual LOL), so I had gotten a Radial Stereo DI to connect between them, without needing that. LOL.

Your console says "15k Ohm" input impedance. That should be ok to listen to a record. Mine is 10k Ohm. Records sound fine here.
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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by drumsound » Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:05 am

You want to use a PHONO PREAMP. Records are mastered with the RIAA EQ curve and requires a phono preamp that applies the reverse of the RIAA curve for "accurate" playback. Line out won't give you that.

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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by crow » Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:42 am

+1 to what drumsound said. It'll sound super thin without a phono preamp because of the RIAA curve https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RIAA_equalization.
I have an Audio Technica AT-PEQ3 (or maybe a previous generation of the same basic preamp) in my workshop that sounds good, not that I've scrutinized it.

While in the ballpark of the topic of interfacing turntables and the studio, I've had good results using a quality mic preamp into the computer, using this guy's free VST RIAA curve

http://www.nullmedium.de/dev/audioplugins/

and the fabfilter pro-q 2 RIAA preset:

https://www.fabfilter.com/forum/2972/eq ... ?replies=1

now that I look at some specs online, I see that apparently the standard input impedance of a phono pre is 47k, while the mic pres I googled seem to be more in the 2k ballpark. with cartridges seeming to be in the 160-200ohm ballpark, I guess a mic pre is right at the recommended 10x impedance mismatch.

Disclaimer: this is "knowledge" I have gained in about four minutes of googling and skimming articles and posts.

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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by crow » Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:45 am

I forgot to mention that you could find a receiver for cheap on craigslist or at goodwill and use it as a dedicated phono preamp by connecting the ghost to the tape outs.

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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by joninc » Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:49 am

drumsound wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:05 am
You want to use a PHONO PREAMP. Records are mastered with the RIAA EQ curve and requires a phono preamp that applies the reverse of the RIAA curve for "accurate" playback. Line out won't give you that.
Thanks for the explanation, I assumed it was more than just a level make up stage and now I understand what it does.
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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by joninc » Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:52 am

what started me down this path was actually a buddy who got a Audio technica TT this christmas and it doesn't require an external phono preamp - upon reading the specs I found that it's built in to the TT. Smart feature!

It might actually be cheaper to pick up one of those used than to buy a phono preamp. Space is a bit of a consideration so I don't really want to have to use a receiver as well if possible...
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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by The Scum » Thu Jan 09, 2020 11:06 am

I built a phono a preamp a while back. A dual opamp and a handful of passives - spare parts from my junk box. The design came from the ol' Nat Semi Audio/Radio Handbook...ESP have schematics for very similar ones.

Of course, by the time it's in a box with a power supply, it costs as much as a simple one from ART or Rolls.

Or Pyle: https://www.analogplanet.com/content/19 ... thing-crap
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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by floid » Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:20 pm

My Denon has a defeatable phono pre built in. Because they were available, I borrowed an Art and a Behringer for comparison. All three were fine. I'm currently using the phono input on a Hitachi receiver, which does have a better sound. It has selectable cartridge types, impedance, and possibly something else I'm forgetting, that allow it to be matched to the cartridge you're using
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Re: connecting turntable to console

Post by drumsound » Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:54 pm

joninc wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:49 am
drumsound wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 1:05 am
You want to use a PHONO PREAMP. Records are mastered with the RIAA EQ curve and requires a phono preamp that applies the reverse of the RIAA curve for "accurate" playback. Line out won't give you that.
Thanks for the explanation, I assumed it was more than just a level make up stage and now I understand what it does.
No problem. I think even people who've had stereos for ever don't realize what's going on with the RIAA curve. We just all bought systems and plugged the TT in where it said PHONO.

An interesting story that Aspen Pitman told me and a few others at either TaopOpCon or NAMM was about how the RIAA curve and LP standard came about. There was a group called the Sapphire Group that consisted of engineers from Decca, RCA and Zenith (I believe). Each of the companies were working on higher quality longer playing (LP) release methods. At the time the companies produced records AND home playback systems. Each of the companies wanted to develop their own system, so that consumer's would buy a system and then be locked into buying their catalog of recorded music. The engineers (men of science) didn't agree with this so they met after hours and developed the RIAA curve and the LP standard. Each presented the same system to their respective companies. These men knew that the releases wouldn't be ties into a specific playback system, even when the bean counters didn't.
joninc wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 10:52 am
what started me down this path was actually a buddy who got a Audio technica TT this christmas and it doesn't require an external phono preamp - upon reading the specs I found that it's built in to the TT. Smart feature!

It might actually be cheaper to pick up one of those used than to buy a phono preamp. Space is a bit of a consideration so I don't really want to have to use a receiver as well if possible...
That is cool that there are tables with a built in phono preamp.

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