Turnable located far away from an amplifier

Hi All,

I am an owner of Naim Atom amplifier and thinking of adding a turntable to my setup.
The challange I have is that the Atom is located below a TV and there is no space for the turntable there.

Ideally the turntable would need to be located against a side wall but the cable distance would be roughly 10m. I guess it would be too far for RCAs? Is it even possible to locate the turntable that far away from an amplifier?

Any thoughts? All input is much appriciated.


I agree that the low level signal from a turntable would struggle with a 10 m journey. Where are you planning on putting your phono stage?
Does your atom need to be below your TV?

Yes, the Atom ideally would need to stay below the TV. Haven’t thought about the phono stage location but it could be half way?

I’d put your phono stage at the turntable end of things and give it a go. Its an unbalanced line signal so may struggle, depends on cable and connector quality and other interference factors .im sure a member with more tech knowledge will be along and give an opinion.

My dealer starts to experience pain when people start talking about anything longer than 2 meters for phono connects. For the phono’s low-level signal, 10 meters are too long. If I really had not other option I would put the phono preamp next to the turntable. Not great either at 10 meters but better.

In case you haven’t considered it, maybe wallmounting the turntable might be an option closer to the Atom

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Put an ADC phonostage by the turntable (or buy one with it built in) and send the signal to a digital input on the atom, which would digitise its analog input anyway.


No, put your phono stage next to the turntable. The amplified signal will travel much better, even if 10m isn’t ideal either.

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That actually sounds like a decent solution. I didn’t know you could get a an AD phono stage but guess you could input directly into the Atom’s digital in. It doesn’t matter how long the cable is then (within reason).

I had a similar dilemma with my Nova but ended up raising my TV off the cabinet and then putting my TT/Nova side by side.

That sounds like a rather good solution here.

As others have said, no way do you want to have the tiny phono signals travelling 10meters - think of the capacitance the cartridge will see! Even a post-phono stage signal is not so good travelling that far, but a phono stage that converts to digital might just do the trick.

I have used a 5m cable from my Uniti to my Staigeline with no detriment to sound, as far as I could hear. This carried power and signal.

I no longer need this but have kept the cable just in case.

The Stageline has boosted the tiny phono signal to line level enabling it to do the 5m.

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That could be a neat idea. However, the phono stages with ADC that I’ve come across (such as the Rega Fono Mini) tend to have USB outputs which won’t work into an Atom unless you then add a USB to SPDIF converter. Perhaps there’s something out there with a suitable SPDIF out, but then Toslink might struggle with 10 metres.

Have you thought of a Bluetooth turntable? Sacrilegious, I know and I’ll probably be struck off from this forum, but it depends how serious you are about vinyl replay. If streaming is going to be your primary source of music playback then something more convenient may do. If you’re serious, just pretend you never read this.

Pro-ject has the Optical Box E Phono, a digital phono preamp with an optical output (and also Line output). Wikipedia states that

TOSLINK cables are usually limited to 5 meters in length, with a technical maximum of 10 meters, for reliable transmission without the use of a signal booster or a repeater. However, it is very common for interfaces on newer consumer electronics (satellite receivers and PCs with optical outputs) to easily run over 30 meters on even low-cost (0.82 USD/m 2009) TOSLINK cables.

And it turns out a Toslink signal booster or repeater is a few euros.

I would just try it with a regular interconnect. Googling a bit it seems from a scientific pov the length itself shouldn’t cause any audible degradation.

But picking up noise of course is, so do make sure it’s a well shielded one.

I’d suggest the Blue Jeans LC-1 for something well made and well shielded, yet affordable. Although there’s probably others out there as well.

I’ve just been looking out of interest and it seems to go from cheap i.e. Project optical E Box to PS Audio’s Phono Converter, which is pretty expensive. Not much in-between.

I do wonder if the Project E Box would be good enough for the Atom? It’s a bit cheap but I’m currently using a Phonobox as a temporary measure and it’s actually pretty good.

The little Projects aren’t bad

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No, definitely not. I’m surprised with my little Phonobox. I think it was £100 and whilst it was purchased years ago for a 2nd system, doesn’t seem too out of place feeding my Nova. Bit of a bargain really.

My TT is wall mounted beside the listening chair, with the phono stage at the TT - and that’s critical to getting good results. The length of cable between the phono stage and amp is far less critical. For this I used a 5M length of Van Damme low noise microphone cable, with the 2 cores simply wired unbalanced L & R. It sounds great and part of that is likely due to the positive benefit of getting the TT further away from the speakers. Technically you want a low output impedance phono stage, otherwise noticeable loss of signal might occur at the frequency extremes. For example a Stageline or Rega Fono should be fine.

My Thorens turntable has a musical fidelity phono amp on a shelf underneath it and then a 5m rca into my Atom and it sounds absolutely fine. Not sure how 10m would work but if you could put your phono stage half way it may well be fine for you.