One of the problems of listening to good music on a turntable is how to keep your turntable tuned up so that the pointy end of the stylus delivers a sweet melody and tunes to your ears. Whether the turntable is old or new, you can probably make some adjustments to make sure it sounds at its best. Turntable tuning and adjustments can also reduce the wear on your records and help them to last long to keep bringing you a unique sound experience over the years. There are several ways to tune up your turntable, which will make it last longer. They include:
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Clean and Lubricate your Records
The first method involves cleaning and lubricating the turntable. This will prevent unwanted speed variations. Most turntables have adjustment screws for 45 and 33 rpm. You can locate these in the owner’s manual, but internet searches will often get you a better idea of where to find them. When tuning your turntable, you should always follow the manufacturer’s recommendations for the recommended amount of force.
After that, level the turntable. While you can use your eye level, a bubble level will ensure that the turntable is level. There are free apps for this, but they can only provide you with a small amount of accuracy. You can purchase a bullseye-level from Amazon for a fair price plus shipping. The Diskeeper bullseye-level is a well-reviewed device, and it costs an affordable price plus shipping.
A cleaning brush can help with this task. Then, you can use sticky solutions to clean the stylus. There are also cleaners for vinyl, such as Pro-Ject Vinyl Clean and Clearaudio’s ‘Elixir of Sound’ fluid. After cleaning the stylus, you can try out a few different cleaning fluids to see which one is best for your turntable.
Level your Turntable
To maintain the quality of your record collection, flat and level your turntable regularly to enable your turntable to perform best and to allow the stylus on the cartridge to drag evenly across a record’s groove without having you favor the left or right channel in the stereo signal. Be sure to get the right equipment such as a torpedo to level your turntable because it will not only do the job perfectly well but also be handy with other tasks around the home. And it’s worth every penny! And don’t forget to practice patience! You’ll soon find yourself listening to your records in a more accurate and satisfying way!
The stylus tip will need to be aligned in the first, second, and third points of the groove. This is important to prevent the stylus from drifting and to ensure that your record is at the right speed. A high-quality record player is easier to set up and maintain, so take care of it as often as you can. While it is essential to have a good-quality cartridge, it’s not necessary to change the lubricant.
Tune the Turntable to a Correct Tracking Force
You should take note that tracking force describes the total amount of pressure the phono cartridge puts on your record. This is why you have to always tune your turntable to the right tracking force to avoid skipping and wearing out of your stylus and records very quickly. Make sure that your turntable’s tonearm is set up in order to apply the correct amount for your cartridge. You can achieve this adjustment through the tracking force adjustment, or counterweight which may be a dial or hanging weight on the tonearm. To tune to the correct tracking force, balance the tonearm in the air, and set the counterweight dial to zero. Then, set the dial of the turntable to the correct setting to impact the performance.
Clean the Stylus
To clean the stylus, it takes less than 5 seconds if you have the right brush because it makes all the difference rather than using the wrong one. A stylus filled with dirt will not fully fit into the groove which can cause all the music in your groove to be incomplete.
Isolate Your Turntable From Vibration
The needle on your turntable is usually very sensitive to vibration, that is more reason for you to bring out the nuances from your cartridge to keep your stylus away from unwanted vibrations. If you don’t isolate your turntable well, it can cause vibration, to avert this, buy rubber-like isolating feet that your turntable will firmly sit on and these feet will definitely absorb the vibration before they reach the record.
Calibrate Your Turntable
Before calibrating your turntable, you should first level the plinth. This will prevent any rotation, which will result in inaccurate alignment measurements. Mount the cartridge. You can do this by screwing the headshell onto the tonearm. The screws should be finger-tightened to prevent the cartridge from falling off, but loose enough to allow the stylus to move. Once you have done this, you can work on the stylus and recheck the alignment.
When tuning your turntable, it’s important to keep it in proper working order. If the arms are not in alignment, then the music will not play well. If the arm is positioned correctly, the track will not be skewed. This will result in better sound quality. You can try to increase the tracking force by raising or lowering the rear of the arm. If this doesn’t work, then you may have to adjust the arms’ pitch.
Get a High-Quality Phono Preamp
If you want your turntable to have a good tunning and good sound, you should invest or purchase a high-quality phono preamp for your turntable, because these phono preamps are more advanced and sophisticated and enhance good and natural sounds. They will also offer you good adjustable settings that will help you get the most optimum and top-notch sound out of your turntable.
Talking about turntable tune-ups, the above measures should be well taken to ensure your turntable is well tuned up and build a great two-channel record playing system for you to have a fantastic sound experience.