Monday, 25 February 2013
Investing in a RM90 rubber band
Oh well, might as well get down to it. What I am referring to is this: a drive belt upgrade for my Rega Planar 3 turntable. Ever since I bought the turntable secondhand about a decade ago, I never thought of changing anything except for the magnetic cartridge. But lately, I had been giving the turntable a serious look-over. It still gives a very good service but boy, I would greatly love a new tonearm. However, it will definitely set me back by at least RM1,500. This is out of the question, out of my consideration, even in the medium term.
This new belt was white. I must say that the first time I handled it, I was curious to see how different it was from the old one. But apart from the colour, I couldn't exactly see any difference. Oh, maybe, the black one looked slightly stretched but I couldn't tell with just a visual inspection. However, Rega had claimed that the improvement was in the rubber which was not only undyed but was also smoother and stronger. Hence, the inference was, it imparted improved motor control and performance.
My first surprise: unlike with the old belt, the turntable started quickly and came up to speed almost immediately. My second surprise: yes, the music did seem tighter and delivered a slightly fuller sound.
Of course, I wouldn't expect the improvements to be utterly drastic and subtle though they were, I must admit that it was a good decision to replace the turntable belt.
Am I still looking for a new tonearm? Erm...