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Help Getting Started (Read 473 times)
NothingButTreble
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Help Getting Started
01/04/18 at 20:26:30
 
I admit that I'm a completely uninformed newbie with the Rachael, with the exception that I know it is extremely high quality, and I'm definitely trying to make sure the one I have remains among the living.  

(And unfortunately I didn't see the specific forum for each product, so I posted a previous question in the general section, but now I'm thinking this is the better place to ask.)

I am trying to connect a Rega P3 turntable to the Rachael.  I've been able to figure out most of the other steps, and I'm at an impasse due to the grounding wire from the P3.

One person has said the turntable should be connected to a pre-amp, but the Decware literature says this isn't necessary, and many times even worse than no pre-amp.  So I'm thinking it is OK to connect the P3 directly to the Rachael, but it would be nice to have that confirmed by the experts here.

I have researched, and other Decware manuals show a "GROUND" which isn't shown in the Rachael manual.

I'm wanting to err on the side of caution, so I'm not connecting anything or turning anything on until I'm certain it is OK.  I know it is probably blatantly obvious to anybody with some knowledge of these amps, but I am still at the starting line.  I've done a fair bit of research, but there just isn't any basic "unboxing" video or even photos of the Rachael connected to anything, except for one by miller88 http://www.decware.com/cgi-bin/yabb22/YaBB.pl?num=1411739097 and I can't see the detail of the connections there.  There may be something by Syd too, but once again I never saw any photos showing what I was hoping to see.

Thank you for any help with this.
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Lon
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Re: Help Getting Started
Reply #1 - 01/04/18 at 20:35:00
 
There is a difference between a "preamp" and a
"phono preamp." You DO NEED a "phono preamp" to pre amplify and re-eq the signal from the cartridge of the turntable to "line level" input of the Rachel.

The Decware ZP3 is an exceptional phono preamplifier and there are many others and many price points. But you WILL need a phono preamplifier to get the proper sound from the turntable into the Rachel. Though Steve is correct that you don't need a preamplifier with the Rachel for line level sources such as a CD player, tuner, DAC, streamer etc. you DO NEED a phono preamplifier to listen to vinyl.

This article may be helpful: http://www.co-bw.com/Audio_All_about_phono_preamp.htm
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« Last Edit: 01/04/18 at 20:38:10 by Lon »  

HR-1,ZP3,ZTPRE,ZBIT,ZROCK2,SE84UFO3-25, Taboo MkIV;PS Audio: Soloist SE, DMP+DSD, P10, PowerBases, XStream Statemt spk cb, AC-12 power cds; Mapleshade:SamsonV2+V3; Oppo UDP-205;VooDoo Cremona +Amati,Iso-Pods;MD90-T SE tuner; headphones: Oppo PM-1,Audeze LCD-2
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hdrider
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Re: Help Getting Started
Reply #2 - 01/05/18 at 16:25:39
 
NothingBut- Lon has summed it up perfectly. We have a ZMC-ZP3-Rachael and it is vinyl magic each and every time I spin a record. You can get started pretty cheap with a phono stage and then move up to a ZP3, but don't judge your Rachael on a less expensive phono stage. There is major synergy in Decware gear. Keep us posted and happy listening, Chris.
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Rachael, ZP3, ZMC 1, SE84CS, Oppo BDP-93, Sota Star TT w/ FR-64, Dynavector D17 mkIII Moving coil, Omega 7XRS Mk 2 walnut, DeepOmega 8 sub, Morrow Audio PH3 and MA3 IC's, Stax Lambda Signature Pro & SRM-T1 tube amp, Gamma Electrostatic phones.
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NothingButTreble
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Re: Help Getting Started
Reply #3 - 01/06/18 at 20:22:55
 
Yes, I agree that Lon stated the facts, and I appreciate the messenger even though the message has a bit of a financial consequence I hadn't planned for.  (I have been a bit remiss in thanking Lon earlier too.)  I guess EVERYBODY everywhere now knows that a turntable must have a phono pre-amp.

And I agree, sticking with Decware would be optimum, I just don't know that financially I'll be able to do that.  Much of the "leverage" I've been able to strive for has been buying the high quality used equipment, rather than new.  I find that most everybody in this area is, if not fanatical, then pretty close to keeping equipment at perfection.

The one problem I'm seeing with Decware is that, and of course it had to work out this way, the turntable cartridge is a moving coil type.  This is supposed to be the better version, but of course is highly debatable too, but that's what I ended up with.  So, I can't just get the ZP3, I have to also get a ZMC.  And, apparently one ZMC is not a "one size fits all" situation, so I'm having to figure out the technical details for the moving coil cartridge.  And given my knowledge in this area, that is proving a bit of a challenge.

And, to echo hdrider's comment, I too figured that just grabbing a cheap phono preamp to get things working would not be prudent in the long run.

I suppose it is frowned upon to suggest competing products on the Decware page, but the odds of finding both the right ZMC and then a ZP3 used seem to be a long-term challenge.  And I now have the Rachael and am looking for a near-term solution.
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Archie
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Re: Help Getting Started
Reply #4 - 01/06/18 at 22:37:13
 
Don't lose heart yet.  When I first approached Decware it was to get a ZP3.  Steve advised me that replacing my amplifier would give me a far bigger lift than upgrading my phono stage.  There are many solid phono stages in the few hundred dollar range.  Also, getting a good moving magnet cartridge might make sense.  Quite good MM carts can be had for a couple hundred.  The refinements as you go up the scale are real, but in my opinion, can be very subtle.  Recently I had to send Steve my ZP3 for service and I used my $100 NAD PP2 phono stage and still enjoyed my sound.  (The PP2 happens to have a switch for either MC or MM carts.)
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