Professional-Ject Basic SB hands-on: This turntable will get you dancing

The Professional-Ject Basic SB turntable.

Steve Guttenberg/CNET

I play music on a regular basis at dwelling, however I could not assist however discover that my spouse was grooving and dancing extra after I performed tunes on the Professional-Ject Basic SB belt-drive turntable. She did not must say it is an awesome sounding turntable, her actions spoke louder than phrases.

Earlier than we go any additional, the Basic SB is the upgraded model of Professional-Ject’s nonetheless out there Basic turntable, which prices $1,099 within the US and £900 within the UK. The Basic SB is barely dearer at $1,499 and £1,350, rocking practically the identical design whereas including Digital Pace Management, a deliciously tactile Leather-based-It platter mat, Clamp-It report clamp and a Sumiko Blue Level No. 2 high-output moving-coil phono cartridge. When that cartridge is bought individually, it goes for $449/£355. The Basic SB is available in three completely different finishes: Walnut, Rosenut and Eucalyptus. The look is 1970s retro, and I swear the Basic SB design makes me take into consideration my outdated Linn LP 12 turntable greater than the rest.

The Basic SB’s precision machined 5-pound (2.three kg) aluminum platter positively feels extra substantial than the platters you get with equally priced Rega or VPI turntables. The Basic SB’s hybrid aluminum/carbon fiber tonearm is likewise impressively constructed. The turntable weighs 22.5 kilos (10.2 kg), however the Basic’s isolation from exterior knocks or footfalls was solely common.

The Professional-Ject Basic SB turntable, with leather-based mat and clamp.

Steve Guttenberg/CNET

Audiophiles looking for to regulate tonearm peak and cartridge azimuth can spend hours tweaking their Basic’s sound. Everybody else can benefit from the Basic a couple of minutes after they pop on the belt, and modify the tonearm’s counterweight to use the right stylus monitoring power for the pre-mounted phono cartridge. All of that needs to be simply completed in 10 minutes, there’s not a lot to it.

I used a Professional-Ject Tube Field DS2 phono preamp with the Basic SB for a few of my listening periods, and this tube preamp infused the sound with loads of heat. Possibly slightly an excessive amount of for my style, so I converted to a Schiit Mani phono preamp and most popular its extra impartial sound steadiness. With turntables all the pieces makes a distinction, that is a part of the enjoyable of entering into analog sound.

Parents remembering the dangerous outdated days of crappy turntables, and the new-to-vinyl convert who frets over LP’s floor noise, clicks and pops will discover newfound quiet spinning LPs with the Basic SB. In fact it cannot completely get rid of these noises, however they recede into the background.

Bob Marley’s “Natty Dread” LP virtually utterly disarmed my reviewer mind, I needed to power myself to pay attention critically, however there wasn’t a lot to criticize, the sound was energetic and Marley’s soulful vocals have been past reproach. The band’s strong assist threw a celebration for my ears.

That led to Prince’s “Purple Rain” and the power degree surged just a few notches. The Basic is not the form of ‘desk that sounds mushy or mellow, Prince’s ‘basic album sounded recent because the day it was minted. 

For some cause the Basic had me spinning my jazz LPs greater than I often do — there was simply one thing about the best way it introduced out the band’s interaction, particularly among the many rhythm part.

The Professional-Ject Basic SB is an actual charmer, and if it is simply barely out of your price range contemplate the usual Basic, it’s going to get you a lot of the method there. 

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