Best TT for the buck?

Hello everyone, This is my first post on the website as i have just become a member. I am fairly new to hifi audio and want to get a turntable. I want the audio quality to be very good, considering my price range that is and i am not opposed at all to going the used route and may even prefer it. My budget will be no more that 600 and trying to keep that to 500. All opinions are appreciated!
Thanks for any advice or help in advance. Ive already lost several hours on the website. its very addictive
Welcome! A friend recently bought one of the Project One brand turntables and he's very happy with it- I think you can get one for around $400 bucks new.
If you're mechanically inclined, used tt's can be a good way to go-do a lot of reading so you know what to look for. Nothing worse than being geeked about a new purchase only to find out that there's a part missing or broken and having to try to find a replacement part.
Technics, Pioneer,JVC,Harman Kardon,Marantz, Sony, AR (Acoustic Research) all made some very capable turntables when vinyl was king (Lots of other companies as well as the ones I mentioned)
Packing turntables for shipping can be tricky, so don't skimp on the insurance and if possible pay w/ a credit card so you have some way to recoup if the shipper/ or shipping company denies your claim.
Lots of resources on this site-and many knowledgeable people. Good luck!
Two musts, first buy used, second only buy something that can be picked up and listened to. Shipping vintage TT is always a loser for the buyer, for all the reasons other state. Finally, a suggest TT would be the Denon 47F, with the 160 cartridge. Cost should be no more then $400.
For a first tt, I have been extremely pleased with my Pro-ject Debut III. The gloss black version is $359 at NeedleDoctor at the moment. You can probably get them to discount it and the rest of your order another 10%. Upgrade the stylus (not the cartridge) and get a SpeedBox and you should be pretty happy. I upgraded the cartridge to a mc; if you do this, you will also need to get the acrylic platter. If I had it to do over, I would just upgrade the stylus on the pre-installed cart.

The big plus here is the easy setup, the ability to return it if you don't like it, and a warranty. Setup takes about 5 minutes, and the tt sounds pretty good :)

Otherwise, you might want to check around for a killer deal on a Rega P2.

I don't really live in an area where there are any hiding electronic places to go listen to TTs. I live in MS and almost no one in the area even knows what good music is. There is a denon DP-790 in the classifieds. Is this a decent table the stats look good even though it is a direct drive.
Rega RP-1, $445 brand new and all set up with an Ortofon cartridge, from Audio Advisor. Great entry level table, without any worries about the quality/reliability and/or shipping issues of a used table. Learn to love vinyl, then eventually upgrade the cartridge. Have fun, and enjoy our wonderful hobby ! Happy Listening.
Im really leaning toward that Denon DP-790. Do yall feel like that is a good idea? will i encounter any problems with it or will it sound bad? The guy wants 275 for it, cart and all. Is this a fair price?
I would go with the Pro-ject Debut III. You should be able to get it delivered for around $350 from NeedleDoctor. No worries; just take it out of the box, take out 2 transport screws, put on the belt, put on the counterweight and adjust, attach the anti-skate weight, put on the platter and mat, and finally put on a record and enjoy.

It's really that easy. It takes less than 5 minutes.

Ive heard bad things from people about the debut III and i am trying to avoid it. For one it has no VTA and has a good bit of wow and flutter. I recently found an oracle alexandria for around 500 bucks but the clamp is broken. does this sound like a good deal?
I haven't had an issue, but if you wish to avoid the Pro-Ject deck, you can look to a recommendation from someone with a little different experience.

In any case, my preference on a tight budget is to avoid used. Others may have different opinions, but I prefer to have a warranty and the ability to return if I can't afford to duplicate the purchase. I bought my Debut III because I wasn't sure I would like vinyl. Had I known, I would have waited and bought something a lot better. I'm actually enjoying the tt, and don't really feel like I am missing out until I decide what tt/arm/cart combo I will end up with in the $5K range.

It sounds like you are bent on used gear, which is fine, but I wouldn't want to buy used gear unless it is in perfect working order and is from a reputable seller here on the 'Gon.

Looks like there is a Moth in your price range:

SOTA Moonbeam II is also pretty close to your budget. Happy listening.

Thanks for all the help guys. This really is a great community. I'll be sure to let y'all know what I get.
I get no respect fot this but I recently scored a clean Linn Basik/Akito and stuck an AT440MLA in works VERY well and I thought I'd just use it for a little while and replace it...but it stays! In your price range for sure.
I'll second Adam18, there is absolutely no way you should buy used if you're new. I recently discovered that my cartridge azimuth was a fraction off, that fraction deprived me of a $1000. worth of sound. If you decide to buy used, you will first have to go to TT college.
I used to suggest a Technics SL-1210 MkII, but...

My brother in law got a Marantz TT-15S1 recently, and for what he paid (used) I would say it's got one serious bang-for-the-buck factor.
Orpheus, Please describe to me how buying a new turntable rather than a used one will spare the OP from possible need to adjust azimuth?
A TT from Audio Advisor will include a cartridge set up by professionals. He will be able to enjoy music while he goes to TT college on the internet.
So many of these suggestions totally disregard the minutiae involved in getting good sound out of a rig. Cartridge, tonearm, TT compatibility; not to mention the precision that must be involved in cartridge setup. This makes me wonder whether or not everyone is getting the most out of their rigs.
I agree with Orpheus, as he agreed with me. The OP has a limited budget, and seems pretty excited about getting an analog front end. At this point, he (she ?) should be more concerned about a pretty easy entry into "the vinyl world," without having to worry about the intricate details of setting up a used table/arm/pick-up. A brand new, easily priced system from Audio Advisor, Music Direct, NeedleDoctor, etc. will provide instant joy, minimal (if any) headaches and stress, and really good sound. I took this approach with my system, and had a reputable local dealer do all the work for me. My Rega P3-24/RB-301/Exact 2/TT-PSU front end was totally set, and all I had to do was bring it home, unpack it, and start enjoying the tunes. Easy.......
Ok guys. I decided to go with a new TT. Im going to get a mmf 2.2 and eventually upgrade the cart, platter, and get a speedbox for it. It looks great too.
Hey Hipho ...... Your news about buying the MMF-2.2 came up as I was typing my previous post. CONGRATULATIONS !! Enjoy your new set-up, and now have fun with your LP's.

Hiphopapotomus! that's a GREAT moniker btw I know where that's from
Flight of the Concords,,, pay attention your getting some good advise.
great choice in exploring analog

I was wondering if anyone else was getting the Flight of the Concords reference. Love this thread because each time I read it, I hear the little bit about "my rhymes are bottomless...." and the associated irony of the pregnant pause in my head.

Hipho, sounds like you made a good decision. I think you will enjoy it very much. I know that I am in the same boat, and my eyes are really being opened up to the virtues of vinyl. I have no dealer in my area to assist with tt setup, but the guys at Needledoctor were very helpful in making sure that I ended up with a plug and play setup (and with a cartridge that was a good match.


One other tidbit that might be helpful: I bought a 16"*16"*2.75" cutting board (Mountainwoods brand) and attached 3 small pyramid isolation pads from Radioshack. It looks great, ands works well as an isolation platform for my tt-- all for around $25.

Hey Orpheus10...... Thanks for the compliment. And the music sounds absolutely wonderful. I did something similar to PMB .... a 3/4" thick MDF board, sitting on eight Vibrapods, serving as an isolation base for my table. Nice !
I am looking forward to your experience with the new table. Can't wait to hear your review, I too am looking to seeing and hearing the vinyl spinning in my rig. It is tough living in hifi nirvana, but it is nice to be able to live vicariously through others experience.
Hey guys, set up my turntable yesterday, and I have to say I am impressed it absolutely blows away my digital sources such as my iPhone and 90's CD player that I really didn't use anyway. I'm actually listening to it as I type this out. GOOD STUFF. Thanks for all the comments guys.
Glad to see you are enjoying it. Sounds like you had the same reaction as me. I expected decent sound, but I was not prepared for how good my tt actually sounded.
@Brownandsandy The first LP i played was Pink Floyd's Dark Side of the Moon.
Thats an interesting topic though, there should be a thread of what people played as their first LP. If they remember that is...
Hipho . I agree that on a shoestring new with warranty is important-- losing money on a used model can't be absorbed. As 4 TT, here's what I did. I accidentally committed to buy a Pro-ect Essential on Ebay. It arrived, and did not win any beauty contests. The tonearm looks like it came from Dollar General. Sound was eagerly bright with tinny highs and weak bass. Then, I purchased set of Gavin Basic interconnects, and when they broke in, HELLO BASS AND SEPARATION !! Also, I got an OM-10 stylus to replace the OM-3, and that soothed and opened the highs. $300 for the turntable, $85 for the upgrades. I do not miss my old Rega P2 Planar at all.