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From SME 20/Vida to Rega RP6/Aria

Discussion in 'audio' started by Tim Jones, Sep 1, 2019.

  1. Tim Jones

    Tim Jones pfm Member

    It's been an interesting few days. On Wednesday I experienced a small personal tragedy in my hifi history when my SME20/3 was sold (to a pfmer who I hope is enjoying it), and the week before my Vida had gone. These were supposed to be "final" components, but financial circumstances meant things had to change.

    On Saturday I picked up my new RP6, and a demo Aria that my dealer has helpfully loaned to me for a home dem. I'm using my spare Benz Micro Ace SL cart (which needed a shim). I'm helped by having retained an ancient Sound Organisation table that, in the absence of a wall-shelf, Rega decks seem to get on well with.

    The Rega is far better than I remember any Rega deck being. It's far more speed stable, and the arm has none of the "grey" quality that the old cooking RB300 used to have. Compared to even the P9 that preceded my SME, the whole thing seems much better locked down and well made

    The Benz is possibly not ideal - it's a bit heavy for the arm (the counterweight is right at the back of the stub). But while the combination lacks the sense of rocklike solidity and analysis, as well as the very low noise and outstanding bass that the SME/Vida had, is gone, it's hugely entertaining.

    And, dare I make this point, changing records on the SME was a bit of a chore. There was the clamp, as well as the fact that you couldn't really take a record off while the platter was spinning because the platter was bigger than the circumference of the disc (for good flywheel reasons).

    As a result for the past 48 hours I've looked like that bloke in the old Cornflake Shop brochure, with a slightly dazed expression and records all over the room.

    So, while I'm going to be pursuing an alternative cart (the AT33SA holds some appeal), my gloom has been lifted by Rega's tremendous development as a design and production house. I am genuinely amazed.
    Last edited: Sep 2, 2019
    Darren L, Tarzan, Shane2468 and 2 others like this.
  2. Woodface

    Woodface pfm Member

    I replaced a Koetsu Black with an AT33, very much enjoying it. Sorry for your 'loss'.
  3. Tim F

    Tim F pfm Member

    All the best Tim! I second the Audio Technica range. I had an OC9, which was great!
  4. Tarzan

    Tarzan pfm Member

    Sometimes less is more.....glad it worked out.:)
  5. Salamander

    Salamander pfm Member

    Pleased you're enjoying the Rega, and good luck finding the right cartridge for you.

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