Users of Best Tractor

Dick bought a Clearaudio Champoin table with a Rega arm some three years ago.

He set it up and then played some LPs.

'Sounds much worse than playing CDs, no extensions and full of distortions', he told us. Repack them to the original cartoon box the gear is left alone.

After hearing a demonstration of how mint solution can make quiet a full of ticks and pops LP, Dick approached us for both solution and a Best Template. We had discussion and he decided to employ our professional service in setting up the turntable for a fee.

Entry-level priced turntable and tonearm do not imply user-friendliness in setup. Many users are confused that since they buy lower price products they should be maintaince free. This Champion turntable and Rega arm are classic examples. Regardless of price, all turntable and tonearm need intense effort in setup and fine-tuning.

Here is how we proceed with Dick's Champion:

Do it daytime when there is good sunlight. Use a large working table. A pleasant working environment helps to get pleasant sound.
Using 3 stacks of old books we create a working platform for the Champion.  
It is important to get a good level of the platter by adjusting the 3 spikes of the turntable. Notice the level bubble is right at the middle of the bulls eye.
After installing the arm to the turntable we attempt to find the correct mounting distance. The arm board of the champion is adjustable and this becomes a very tricky business for newbies. We wonder why the factory do not give a fixed armboard which means a much easier life for users. Use a designer ruler. The one we use is made by Faber-Castell. Not all rulers are made the same. Off the shelve rulers are inaccurate and get you nowhere. You may need replica watches for youself.
After getting the correct mounting distance we tighten the armboard by the screws provided. It is important that you do not turn the screws too hard and all six screws must be of more or less turned by the same strength.     This same rule applies to fixing the hexgonal washer to fix the arm. Too tight means dead sound!
Get the VTF as recommended by the cartridge manufacturer.
Then install the cartridge to the headshell. Examine if the azimuth is correct. This time we find the left side is higher than the right side. As Rega arm does not allow azimuth adjustment we have to make some washers from plain paper to act as shims. In this case we put 2 paper washers to get the correct azimuth.
The next thing to watch for is the VTA. Adjusting VTA on a Rega arm is just a clumsy task. First, remove the platter and the spindle block away from the turntable. Loosen the hexagonal washer. Turn the Rega arm clockwise to lower VTA or counter-clockwise for a higher VTA. Tighten the washer, put back the platter and then have a check. Reiterate the process until the correct VTA is found.
Before the alignment exercise, use a Staedtler Rubber to fix the platter and make sure it does not move.
Perform cartridge alignment with the Best Template.

It took us over five hours of labour to install the turntable. Then the whole thing was delivered to Dick's home by hand. The cartridge is a brand new Clearaudio Aurum Beta in wood shelf. We played a Michael Jackson and Dick found that there was so much punch left out by his Sony SACD player. A Beecham Scheherazade LP was played as a final call, and all of us were impressed by its dynamics.

No more distortions!

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