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upgrade: please advice
2018-07-19, 11:42
Post: #1
upgrade: please advice
Hello Everyone

Let me introduce myself: my name is Francesco, I write from Italy.
This is the first time I write on this forum, even if I read you literally "a lifetime" almost every day.
And I must say that your advices has always been a source of great inspiration in my audiophile life.
Since I have been able to afford it, I have been a great lover and buyer of Linn products.
I do not think I am a "fanboy", I have heard many installations of different brands, for passion and for work.
But when blindfolded I have to choose the one I like more, my choice inevitably always goes on Linn.
With her (despite Gilad, for me Linn is female), my ears feels "at home". Of course, like all great loves, there have also been great disappointments,
but in the end we (I) have always found the way to move forward.
That said, I would like to ask you a question that concerns me in my summer holidays.
Small premise: since 2006, or since I bought the first DS, I have not listened to CDs anymore, and for a series of reasons, even the vinyls.
Some months ago I have solved some logistical problems, and I decided to buy a turntable again.
Now I have essentially two systems:

Main - KEDSM, AEBOX10/KAT, 2x4200, 212, EBSUB, Sizmik 10.45, silvers, k200, etc.etc.
This is the system that for its position I listen more, about 4/5 hours a day.
I really like how it sounds, even if it is not finished yet. In fact, I'm waiting to find a K345 sub at a decent price and therefore I will be satisfied.

Living room - AEDSM, MEBOX-I, 140 w/metal bases, and LP12 with:
walhalla, circus, akito, adikt into the phono-in (obviously turning the internal card) of the AEDSM.

After 12 years of files, of course, the detail, separation, etc.etc. are very different, but the "type" of sound is really beautiful!
Obviously you already know what I'm talking about.
So, taking advantage of the LINN summer promotion, which does not really make "the miracle scream", but that anyway can give the excuse to the "monkey",
I decided to upgrade the turntable to bring it to a good level so that I can enjoy this beautiful sound better.

After days of "ruminations" I would have decided to put a budget of about 6/7000 euros on the table in:
lingo4, kore, urika2.
For my character I do not buy used components willingly, but I know a great friend of mine, whom I see and hear very often, that a few years ago
bought an akiva that he has practically never used. He took the turntable because he liked the object, but always listens to files.
I can have his akiva (which I know for sure he does not even have 100 hours) for 1500 euros.
Considering my pieces to give back (walhalla and adikt) I think I'll fit well in the budget, and I think I have a big update, that I can
allow me to enjoy my vinyl records and rediscover this fantastic sound.

I would like to have your comments or advice from experts.
Thanks to all those who will help me in this choice.

Francesco
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2018-07-19, 12:48 (This post was last modified: 2018-07-19 12:53 by Ian Wilkinson.)
Post: #2
RE: upgrade: please advice
All very nice systems. Congratulations.

Your ear is obviously tuned to the appreciation of records.

Very good choices on the L4 and Kore, all under the bonnet upgrades in the source first etc.

I would maybe suggest a new Krystal instead of an old cartridge as it may have suspension problems and a risk you don’t need to take considering the prices.

Please make sure you have a trusted dealer to do the work and give the player a setup and service at the same time.

I think you will be rewarded by the magic sound you have now but very much more music to the sound.

Edit What Akito do you have? Get it checked first. If the ‘arm has bearing problems then you need to address this rather than a U2.

Dealer should check for you before you commit funds

Klimax LP12 (Cirkus, Tranquility, Radikal D, Keel, Urika, Khan top plate, Ekos SE, Kandid). Klimax Renew DS. KK D, Solos D. 242 mk 2 with upgraded stands. Project RCM
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2018-07-19, 15:22
Post: #3
RE: upgrade: please advice
Hello Ian

Thanks for your feedback and your advice. It is right this kind of comments that I was looking for here in the forum.
In fact, the question that you ask about Akiva is to be taken into consideration.
The fact is that I know the owner very well, and I know that the cartridge is really like new. he bought it about 5 years ago and he used it very very few times.
Do you think that it could has suspension problems?
However, being a friend, I can always try it and if I'm not sure I'll give it back to get a Krystal.
This operation (Akiva) would be interesting for me also for another reason. Since I know myself, it is likely that if I like it a lot, as I believe, maybe
next year I will want to replace it with a Kandid. At that point, even if it's not huge numbers, I'll probably lose less money in the exchange.
Is it worth changing an Akiva for a Kandid even if it's not over? Is it an upgrade that makes sense?
Tonearm I have is a Scottish Akito (I do not know what exact version it matches) but it was installed 3 months ago by my trusted dealer, who even though
is 200 km from me I often see it because it is also my client. I've known him for 15 years, and he's very passionate about his work, especially turntables.
Another point I wanted to understand is: on my exakt system is it worth putting urika2?
I read here on the forum and in some reviews that is a sort of a must-buy for those who already have exakt, but I still have not understood if it transforms the analog-to-digital sound too much?
I would not want to lose a bit of that beauty that is making me fall in love with the analogue once again.
In this case I could always take from the same friend of the akiva, a Linto (2?) To 700 euro, as long as it is appreciably better than my pre MC in the AEDSM.
And maybe free resources for other upgrades.
What do you think?

Thanks in advance
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2018-07-19, 17:12
Post: #4
RE: upgrade: please advice
Ehm... Can I use an urika2 with a lingo4 or a need a radikal?
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2018-07-19, 17:14
Post: #5
RE: upgrade: please advice
This is the most passionate post I've ever read on this forum! Thank you! It's 9 am here in Vancouver and I'm already in love with everybody and everything!

First of all, Urika, 1 or 2, requires Radikal to operate. And, Radikal would be my recommendation for your first upgrade.

After that, you should upgrade the sub-chassis. Kore is really good. However, be warned as I've had my Kore for only two years, and I'm already looking to get a Keel.

Next step would be the Krystal in preparation for the Urika 2. It is not consistent with the recommended hierarchy, but it is so fundamental, and would make a very good difference in sound quality.

Also, A very good turntable stand is always a requirement. I have an Audiotech (Made in Italy).

LP12 (S/N 14xxx), Black ash plinth, Cirkus, Radikal, Kore, Ittok LVIII Mark 2, Krystal, Audiotech stand, Urika II, 530 system
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2018-07-19, 18:46
Post: #6
RE: upgrade: please advice
Since you are looking to upgrade an LP12 where you have several options there is much to talk about. First off there is a hierarchy to the LP12 just as there is to the system. The most important parts of the LP12 are as follows in descending order:

1) Cirkus bearing/plater
2) Motor and controller
3) Subchassis
4) Pickup arm
5) Cartridge
6) Phono stage

Since you have the Cirkus you really should be looking at the motor/power supply first and while the Lingo 4 is good the Radikal is better and will make a bigger musical improvement than the other upgrades. I have talked about this elsewhere so I'll just give the short version here and state that I have done a comparison for myself and a customer where we found that an LP12 with Radikal, steel Cirkus subchassis, Basik LV-X and AT95e was musically better than an LP12 with Lingo 2, Kore, Ekos 2 and Adikt! So you really want to get the Radikal even if it means you can't afford any of the other upgrades currently. In addition, either Urika, as already mentioned, will only work with the Radikal. This is not only because the Radikal DC motor does not have fluctuating magnetic fields that the Lingo 4, 3, 2, 1 and Valhalla motors have and which would cause interference with the Urika, but also because the Radikal powers the Urika. One thing that might make you temporarily step outside the hierarchy is that Linn gives you a substantial discount when you buy a Radikal and Urika together - in the neighborhood of $900US (it varies with the Urika and which Radikal case you get).

Then you should be looking at the subchassis. The Kore is very good but the Keel is definitely better. However, the Akito will only work with the Keel if you remove the cueing device - no problem for some people but a big problem for others. So you might want to see if you can find a good condition used Ekos 2, itself a big upgrade over an Akito, if/when you are ready for a Keel.

Then comes the arm and the aforementioned Ekos 2 or better yet the EKOS SE/1 would be the way to go here.

Then you are ready to look at the cartridge and phono stage as they often need to be changed together if you are going for low output moving coil. A clean used Akiva is a great cartridge but there are some on here who have said they find the Krystal even more musical. However, your thoughts about an eventual Kandid purchase would certainly argue in favor of the Akiva which gets you a much better trade in credit towards the Kandid. But it really makes little sense to go for a Kandid until you have a Radikal/Keel/Ekos SE/1 as any and all of those upgrades with the Akiva or Krystal will be more musical than the Kandid without any one of them.

Finally now onto the phono stage. The MC card in the Akurate units is good enough that you can easily appreciate any of the upgrades mentioned above. The Linto is a little better but I would only consider it as a temporary step so I would want to make sure you are buying it at a price that will allow you to sell it and not lose anything. As to the Urika 2, for your systems, which are both Exakt setups, it would definitely be an upgrade and should lose less of the analog quality than you are losing now. This is because your LP12 is already being converted to digital right after the phono stage so as to work with the all-digital Exakt signal path. The Urika 2 does a better job of this analog to digital conversion as it has the same ADC chip used in the KDSM units but has one per channel. This gives more headroom and lower noise and will provide better sound than even running through a KDSM and a bigger boost over the ADSM. But, again, this is musically the last thing to upgrade.

If your dealer is Paolo Nobile you are in good hands as he is indeed very passionate about Linn and the LP12 in particular. I would ask his advice as he won't steer you wrong. If it is him tell him high form ThomasOK!

LP12SE Movingui • KRadikal • Kandid • Urika • Kremlin • LS-NAS • KRDS • Lejonklou Sagatun Monos & Tundra Mono 2As • JBL 3677s & 4645C Sub • NOKTable • Harmoni Mimer/Tor Racks
AV: Pioneer BDP51 BluRay • Akurate Kontrol • 2 LK280 SPARK • 4 Isobarik DMS • 2 DQ1W

www.nokturneaudio.com

Fine-tuning LP12s since 1978!
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2018-07-20, 09:30
Post: #7
RE: upgrade: please advice
Thanks to all of you guys, very insightful!
I’ll answer you this evening...
Have you a nice day (or night)
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2018-07-20, 09:49 (This post was last modified: 2018-07-20 09:50 by moog_man.)
Post: #8
RE: upgrade: please advice
(2018-07-19 17:12)francem Wrote:  Ehm... Can I use an urika2 with a lingo4 or a need a radikal?
Correct, francem - you need a Radikal to power the Urika2

{edit} Apols, just seen that TO’K has covered this above

Fluted Oak LP12_Keel_Lingo 4_Ittok III_Akiva_Linto | Oppo UDP-205 | Ak Tuner
KK/2_KCT/d {Lejonklou K-200} Ak 212 | 2250/d - Ak 225 | AV5105 - Tukan | Sizmik 10.25 | Intersekt R4S5 | Isol-8 MiniSub Wave {Silvers}
+Technics SL1210s | Urei 1620 | Nakamichi System One | AV5125/d - Katan (Aktiv) | Roomamp 2i
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2018-07-21, 08:28 (This post was last modified: 2018-07-21 08:30 by francem.)
Post: #9
RE: upgrade: please advice
Thank you all for your advice, they have been very illuminating.
At this point I would say:
- radikal (akurate)
- kore (because now I won't afford keel + ekos SE)
- akiva of my friend (because I've already given to him my word at least to try it)
for the rest I'll see.
I would like to get urika2 because it would allow me to clean the cables,
The deck is about 3m away from the pre, and now to connect it I use a 3.5m pair of custom black IC male/female with ground cable.
The T-cable is silver.
So with urika2 I could connect everything with just one flat, little, almost invisible network cable. On the other hand I do not like the idea of spend for these upgrades and keep the black IC. I should get custom silvers, another 4/500 euros...
but at that point I can wait for a while (December) and then get urika2, so my wife will be happy to have less cables in the living room.
As you know, wives hate cables Wink

what do you think?

Now that I think about it, I would lose the radikal+urika bundle bonus of around 1000 euros... mhmm...
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2018-07-21, 15:42
Post: #10
RE: upgrade: please advice
That sounds like a very sensible upgrade path. I am sure you will be amazed at how much more music comes out of your LP12 with the Radikal, Kore and Akiva. All three are quite big upgrades with the Radikal being the biggest. You are in for some fun!

LP12SE Movingui • KRadikal • Kandid • Urika • Kremlin • LS-NAS • KRDS • Lejonklou Sagatun Monos & Tundra Mono 2As • JBL 3677s & 4645C Sub • NOKTable • Harmoni Mimer/Tor Racks
AV: Pioneer BDP51 BluRay • Akurate Kontrol • 2 LK280 SPARK • 4 Isobarik DMS • 2 DQ1W

www.nokturneaudio.com

Fine-tuning LP12s since 1978!
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