Thanks for responding.
Price range for a new cartridge would be $70 max. I often listen to classical LPs; Strauss, Beethoven symphonies, Mozart and Wagner operas, but also lots of rock and pop music, especially Jimi Hendrix, Elvis, and Abba (my tastes are a bit eclectic I guess).
I might have some time to think about it because the TT comes with a cartridge already, it just needs a stylus, but I can't figure out what cartridge it is from the picture. Maybe someone else here can make it out from the photos:http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?Vi ... 500wt_1099
It looks like an older Audio Technica. No idea what stylus it uses or if it will sound ok.
As far as a phono stage, I rushed into purchasing an ART DJ Pre II Preamp tonight. It's this one: http://www.americanmusical.com/Item--i-ART-DJPREII-LIST
I've heard many here recommend the AT PEQ-3 but I actually bought one last month for my current player and it had really low output and a nasty hum on my system. It sounded worse than the built in pre-amp, so I returned it. Perhaps I got a bad one, don't know. The ART seems to get pretty consistent reviews as a nice budget pre-amp and I was able to pick it up for $40.00.
I also bought some Technics SFW-0010 lubricating oil for the spindle, given that the SL-D202 in question has probably not been used for a while and will need it. If it doesn't work out, I'll keep the bottle for the next Technics I buy
I'm hoping it will arrive in one piece though; that is my real concern:
I emailed the seller and wrote a book spelling out exactly how it should be shipped, with the platter removed, wrapped and packaged with protective material; the counterweight removed, and the tonearm twisty tied down, with nothing rubbing against anything else. Now let's see what happens....
Anyway, I'm excited about hearing what my records will sound like on a decent turntable. As I mentioned earlier in the thread, until now I've been using an AIWA PX-E860, which is a cheap plastic P-mount design. I have decided to not play any more records on my system until I get a decent TT up and running. If this SL-d202 does not work out I'll just buy a different Technics.
Please everyone give me some good advice to make the most of this system!