Question about Technics SL-1200 Turntable

1 Answer

Hum on right channel

HI, I got my Technics SL 1200 hooked up to my Yamaha Receiver and the receiver connected through "Rear Out" to my computer (RCA-to-Miniplug) it sounds flawless. Lately I am getting the classic "HUM" more intensely in the right channel (yes, it's grounded in the back of the receiver Yamaha RX-595, and tried it in many different places). When I ground it, the sound level drops a bit and I get a clear defined hum on the right channel, i tested it with headphones and it's very clear. the sound is similar to the one you get when you just unplug one of the RCA cables. Now when i play a record, and increase the volume a little bit, my subwoofer makes my apartment shake like crazy.  I have not had this problem before, until a repair shop thought it was a good idea to replace the RCA cables to a higher quality gold RCA's. The guy said that i didn't have ground before and that he fixed that. Now I have this problem and i don't want these guys to keep putting their hands on this great record player. Please any ideas on what this could be? suggestions or tests i should do?. I've done some basic electronic work in the past, I thought maybe I should replace those RCA for new ones? please help, thank you !!!!!! Martiin

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  • 2 more comments 
  • mognor Jul 14, 2008

    djproaudio, thank you for you quick response. I did open the turntable and everything seem pretty normal. After reading lots of blogs and videos, I did solder the ground cable to one of the RCA ends which completely eliminated the hum sound. Of course I did it before reading your response. was that a bad idea? it sounds pretty good now, and I dont have to deal with the ground issue anymore, it's very silent. what are your thoughts? please let me know.  Best,


  • mognor Jul 15, 2008

    Davis, I appreciate your answer. Although I do not use Serato, I can appreciate the sound of a good record and I like to get the best out of that record player, which is phenomenal. If the cables were failing or something they would still be failing now i think. Same case with the needle or cartridge. My Guess is that the tech screwed up by reconnecting the ground cable the wrong way, and I guess that's why after I eliminated it,  the HUM is absolutely gone...Thoughts? please let me know I am very interested to learn from your experience. Also I have a new question. 

    The Turntable is connected to a yamaha receiver, and from there (rear Out) to the line in of the sound card(soundBlaster XFi Fatality) . Sound is pretty clean, but my question is, since the sound is coming from the speakers connected to the computer (and not the receiver), I believe is not pure, since it's being digitalized the moment I connect it to Line in? is that correct?

    am I loosing some sound quality by doing it this way? is my pc compressing the audio? please let me know your thoughts on this. Thanks a lot Davis, your help is greatly appreciated. 


  • mognor Jul 16, 2008

    Yes, My SL1200 is connected to the phono inputs of the receiver . Before I just had a $20 preamp connected to the computer. I think the receiver sounds way better. 

    The thing is that, even that I am not recording at all, the sound card comes with a software which lets you apply different effects to the sound while playing. Like equilizer, mixer, 3d effects, sourround sound for 5.1 (which is what I have 5.1) in fact, with some settings, when I listen to my headphones (from the receiver) , the music is a bit a head than what's coming out of the speakers. like a quarter of a second difference, thats when I started to think that the soft is applying some kind of filters or something to the sound coming from the turntable. I try to use the cleanest combination as possible. Do you still think the sound is not digital? 

  • mognor Jul 17, 2008

     well, how about choosing between 5.1 and 2.1 speakers. that's an effect itself the software does to modify the signal isn't it? or what about when you turn up the volume or when you modify the BASS/TREBLE on your computer? I can tell my mixer to use 1 to 7 speakers, but the actual signal from the record comes in stereo. obviously, at some point, the computer optimizes the sound to be 5.1 instead of digital.  So, the moment you connect any analog signal to your "line in" in your computer, and I believe, this applies to all standard PC/computers, the signal changes to digital. do you agree Davis? How can I modify the volume bar, or any kind of property of the sound without the sound being actually digital.?What are your thoughtS?


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It doesn't really sound like this tech knew what he was doing. He probably connected the ground wire incorrectly. I would also suggest opening up the tonearm base section, and checking to see the work he did. Perhaps he did not solder the RCA leads correctly.

If all is good, then there are only 2 other things which may cause this... 1) Tonearm, 2) Cartridge. You'll have to check those 2 out.

FYI, I work on 1200s for a living, so I know these machines inside out.

- Davis

Posted on Jul 12, 2008

  • 1 more comment 
    TERMiNAL OPTiC Jul 15, 2008

    Yes, that will eliminate the hum all together. However, eventually, you will still need to isolate why that hum was being caused, even after you had new cables installed. This will affect sound quality later on down the line. If you use Serato, the program is very sensitive to the audio signal, and if there are any issues with the sound quality, it will not respond accordingly. However, if you just spin vinyl, the good ole' fashion way, then your fine.

    Good luck, and have fun!

    - Davis

    TERMiNAL OPTiC Jul 16, 2008

    Does your amplifier/receiver have Phono Inputs? If so, I would suggest using that to connect your turntable. If not, are you going through a pre-amp, or does the software you use, boost the signal for the phono? The reason I ask, is because these turntables require a boost in the signal, and ALL phono inputs have a built-in pre-amp which does this. If your going into a regular LINE INPUT, this will NOT have a pre-amp built into it, and the volume coming from the turntable will be very low into your receiver. However, if you say it's working, than I am going to assume that the software is somehow boosting the signal.

    In any event, to answer your question. Even though your signal from your turntable is going to your PC, it's still an analog signal, and no digitizing takes place. However, if you take that signal and the software converts it to a digital signal during or after recording, then that's a different story. As long as you have a nice clean signal going into your PC, and your using a decent sound card, you'll be ok. I'm sure when you record from Vinyl to your PC Software, it asks how you want to record. This is where the digitizing takes place, and you'll want to record in the highest format available (CD Quality or better). As for the sound coming from your speakers, well, PC speakers are rather limited in frequency. If you are concerned about how your audio sounds coming from your PC, then I would suggest investing in a pair of Studio Monitors. If this is not an issue, then just keep doing what your doing. The only time you should be concern about your sound is if your editing, creating, or remixing a song/track. You want to hear the song in it's cleanest form, in addition to all the frequencies, properly. This is where a good set of studio monitors come into play. If your just using your PC to record yoru vinyl to CD, then this is not a major concern. But try to get at least a good pair of PC speakers. Maybe something with sub-woofer. Other than that, it sounds like your on the right track.

    - Davis

    TERMiNAL OPTiC Jul 17, 2008

    There is something going on, if there is a slight delay with what you hear in the headphones, and what is coming out on your speakers. At the point, it's hard to determine where this a noticeable delay. Most software works very quickly, and you shouldn't notice anything. Are your speakers close to you? As for it being a digital signal at that point... it sounds like a yes. Because if the the software is modifying the original analog source signal and applying efx/filters, then it needs to convert it to a format it can manipulate easily and quickly, and this format is DIGITAL.

    So, I hope I've answered some of your questions. If you need anything, please feel free to ask.

    - DAVIS.


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