New on the Forum and some advice re turntables

Hello everyone, I have just recently found this forum following a purchase of a Uniti Star earlier in the year at the end of the total lockdown. At the time I thought having the streaming and CD capability would be all I need in a single good looking, functional unit. As far as I am concerned the sound is great and I really enjoy it.
Since then I have been wondering about vinyl - not that I own any unless I manage to unearth some old albums from the loft or from my parents house! My question is, is it worth bothering with - if I plug the turntable into the star will it deliver the “vinyl” sound or will it convert it to digital and then back to analogue and will anything be lost along the way?
I am thinking of going down the Rega route with either a P3 or P6 so if the general consensus is that it will still sound great what is the best way to connect it to the star, via the twin RCA plugs or via RCA to DIN socket?
I know an audition is probably the correct answer but I would welcome some thoughts.
Many thanks

It’ll sound great I’m sure, but you will need a phono stage, whether a separate unit, or one built in the the turntable. The latter is usually something that you find with some entry level decks such as the Rega P1 Plus. However if you could aim a bit higher at a P2 or P3 with a Fono phono stage, that may be money well spent. What sort of money do you have to spend here?

Two parts to the question there, I feel. Richard has answered the one. The second part is, is it worth it to you? If you don’t have vinyl to play at the moment, what is it you are looking to find. The cd and streaming via Naim is an exceptionally good sound. Adding a vinyl player and the buying vinyl to play is quite an expensive path to go down unless you have a good reason. True it looks good spinning away and feels good taking part in the experience of getting up and playing a full side of an LP, and then getting up again and playing another full side. It isn’t something that is convenient though and unless you have a love of vinyl or intend to start collecting older vinyl I wonder if it is worth it?

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I have a Rega P1 plus into a Naim Muso 2 and it sounds really good for an entry level deck.

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I downsized from a separates system but kept my turntable. This means I use a Star with my ageing (but recently serviced) LP12 and it sounds great so there is no reason not to get a turntable. In my experience there is a difference in sound quality between ripped CD and my turntable, which is better is not really an issue, just that they are different and each having slight advantages over the other. However, turntables and LPs are relatively expensive and to do the Star justice, I think you would need at least a Rega 3 or ideally the Rega Planar 6.

@Greybeard welcome. Glad you like your Star. All good advice above but I think you raise a good point with regard to how the Unitis handle analogue input.

I just love my vinyl records through my system, it sounds great but my vinyl playback is all analogue. How can there be any sonic advantage from vinyl if the amplification turns it digital and back again? I understand that the current Linn amps do the same. I can get in these circumstances someone would buy a TT and phono stage to play an existing collection of records but only for that reason surely, as in effect they are going to be neutralised to the same standard as the digital playback?

Regards,

Lindsay

I had a similar question last year, which was prompted by finding my vinyl collection that I had not seen since 1992. I decided to buy a 2nd hand LP12.

I now listen to locally stored music, interspersed with infrequent sessions of vinyl. I still enjoy the ritual of taking a record out of its sleeve, placing it on the LP12, and cueing the arm for 20 / 40 minutes of analogue music.

Thank you all for your swift replies - much appreciated. I think LindsayM gets to my concern very well - if the Star converts an analogue signal to digital and then back again is it really worth my effort to get a turntable - will it sound different enough to warrant the expenditure. Camphuw and paulbysea’s replies make me think it is worth an audition. I would love an LP12 but would think about going down the second hand route however as I know nothing about turntables I really need a plug and play solution which would probably be a Rega P3 or P6 and I am going to need a decent phono stage as well. One of the reasons for thinking along these lines is the kids are always asking me what I want for Christmas/Birthday and suggesting some vinyl might make their lives easier.

Thank you for all of your input.

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Welcome to the forum! I/we (I include my wife as we listen together a fair bit) were pretty ok with just in-home streaming of music (so long as the stuff actually worked…and improvements over the years to the Naim streaming architecture sure helped). But then her daughter found some of her old albums in the basement of my wife’s ex/daughter’s dad. And we had to play them!!!

I will tack onto Richard’s suggestion of a Rega, such as a P3 being a good match for the Star. Rega turntables are about as much ‘plug and play’ as you can get and also being very high quality for the money. You will not need to worry about which cartridge is right and whether it’s mounted exactly right; they come from the factory all set up.

If you have a bit of a collector in you you’ll have to be careful about how much vinyl you acquire! Of course lp’s from the local shop that are just a few quid won’t break the bank. We pretty much stopped about ~ 130 lp’s total. I/we do not want a room full of vinyl. Good luck!

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Vinyl to the Star is not going to sound like a cd to the Star; I’m pretty sure if you put on a record and the cd and close your eyes and have someone select…you’ll know which is which.

While there is much discussion as to what factor(s) are responsible for the sound of vinyl vs a pure digital source, one such element could be the RIAA curve. This is not eliminated when the signal from the phone stage is digitized in the Star; it’s already been “applied.” So there’s that.

I think a Rega 3 with Fono is a splendid idea. Just listen at your dealers first, and perhaps try a P6 to see if it’s worth the extra.

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Personally, if me, with a Star, I would choose rather a Technics 1500 c black. Even less expensive vs the P3.


Picture from Technics site

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Having had a Rega P6/Ania, I’d suggest getting the P6/Exact combination, with a Rega Fono MM.

As frenchrooster says , this may be ideal, it comes with cartridge and built in phono stage, just plug and play

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Can it be upgraded by an external phono? If someone would like to do it later

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It looks as if it can do line or phono outputs

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Frenchrooster - thanks for the suggestion of the Technics - this now gives me something else to investigate.
I think Bart’s mention that the RIAA curve from the turntable not being eliminated goes way above my head but hopefully it is good enough reason that means a turntable is a worthwhile addition to my listening experience.
Does anyone have any thoughts on RCA input vs DIN? or won’t it make any difference?
Thanks again for everyones input

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Greybeard,I use a modded RP3/MP200 via an Arkless phono amp into the Din input of my Star, in case it did sound better than RCAs, but I don’t know that I’d does. I’d suggest that a P6 would be the place to start, but a P8 would be better. I believe that the Din input is designed for use with a Naim phono amp?
I just enjoy my music with my Star, whether CD or vinyl.

If the cable is already attached, it’s an RCA. If not, you can have RCA from the turntable and Din to the Star. Naim prefers DIN, so RCA to DIN or DIN ( from Naim phono) to DIN.
But with the Rega, you can’t change. It’s RCA to RCA. Or you need to modify it.
I would not bother.

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Ho ho ho , please leave that snake pit alone

If the cable is RCA don’t change it. In the simplest of terms - the Star will have DIN inputs - this will mainly accommodate Naim legacy products. I have a Naim product dating back to the very early 1990s, I use straight DIN to DIN , my Graham Slee phono stage has RCA and that’s what I use to connect to my Nova.

The great thing about Uniti is the range of inputs