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Really confused on how to connect

Hey All.

have recently decided to make the trip into vinyl. However quite confused on how to connect everything (as I only own active speakers) and don't know the lingo that well (e.g. what each output and input is). I'll explain what I've been trying to do and what equipment I have available and hopefully someone will be able to help. I know I could buy some passive speakers but don't really want to spend more money unless it's the only option.

I've bought myself a Project Essential 2 turntable, have my friend's Kam dj 2 power amplifier and my own Klispch Promedia 2.1 speakers (note these are active and include a 200-watt digital hybrid amplifier with a miniplug input).

I was hoping to convert the phono output (I may be incorrect here, not 100% on the lingo, it is one red and one yellow cable) from the turntable straight into the active speakers using a adapter and using the miniplug input. I achieved some sound coming out but it was very patchy/fading in and out (I think this is probably the adapter as it didn't sit in there properly). Could anyone let me know if this is a feesable way of getting the record player going? And if so which adapter do I need to buy for this to work?

Lastly, if this isn't possible could anyone let me know how to connect the amp to the speakers? I can easily connect to the amp, so if I had passive speakers could use the turntable, but obviously don't want to spend unnecessary money.

Cheers for any and all help!

Really confused on how to connect

Reply #1
I am not into vinyl (I'm hopefully going off to Uni and there will be no space to keep records so haven't bothered investing - my 44.1kHz/16bit FLACs serve me well) so take my advice with a grain of salt.

I achieved some sound coming out but it was very patchy/fading in and out (I think this is probably the adapter as it didn't sit in there properly).

It sounds as if you need a phono preamp for your turntable (pretty sure the Project Essential doesn't have a built-in one). The reason being is your speakers need a line level input which has a much higher voltage than phono level.

Really confused on how to connect

Reply #2
That's a "traditional" turntable with no electronics, so no line-output and no USB.    You need a phono preamp which boosts the signal from the phono cartridge to line-level and applies the RIAA equalization.  (Without the RIAA EQ, you'll get over-strong high frequencies and no bass.)

In the old "vinyl days", almost every receiver or hi-fi preamp had a phono preamp built-in.

A phono preamp will connect directly to your active speakers (with the appropriate cable-adapter).  A basic phono preamp won't have a volume control, but you can use the volume control on your speakers.

You can also get USB phono preamps which have both analog outputs and the USB output for digitizing LPs.

You can find phono preamps for under $50 USD or you can spend a lot.  Personally, I wouldn't go too crazy because it's not expensive to build a good phono preamp with modern electronics and the weak link in sound quality is the analog record anyway.

The amplifier won't work with your active speakers.  It's also odd that a "DJ" amplifier doesn't have a phono preamp built-in, but that amp seems to have only line-inputs.

P.S. has some more-affordable preamps, or you can try Amazon, or just search the Net, etc.

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