Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

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levman_0549
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Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by levman_0549 » 29 Feb 2016 16:11

I have the ability to buy either of these tables and they are quite different.

The Technics is a fantastic looking table in black and gray with a DD and quartz locked speed. W&F is only .025% and rumble is -73 DB. At this time the cuing is not functional and will need to be repaired by someone that really knows how to take these apart and put them back together. It's tedious work and needs to be done correctly. It can be use by just using your hand like very old school tables until it gets repaired.


My other option is a fully functional Rega Plannar II that completely manual in operation but has a nice glass platter and will be up-graded with a aluminum sub platter eventually along with a Q-Lift. Total Cost of Rega,$550 with all up-grades and a nice extra rubber matt and a nice record clamp free extra value $100.

I like them both but the Technics will cost more to get the cueing repaired $275 and to get a dust cover $150 or so. Total cost of Technics $650 or so.

They are sort of opposite type of tables and I love the look of the Technics but the Rega is also very nice and can be up-graded by adding that new sub platter along with sanding and re-staining the wood trim around it and a Q-Lift $50.

So a tale of two completely different types of turntables and I can't really decide which is actually the better table?

I would think the Rega is the better table as far as a lower noise and the cheaper of the two after up-grades along with the cueing being functional right away.

Opinions and suggestions please help me out as I have 2 days or so to make my up my mind and go for the Technics or 3 days to get the Rega as it's a friend selling it to me. Sincerely, Steven Level

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by analogaudio » 01 Mar 2016 01:48

These two are so dissimilar. One is primitive all manual difficult to set up and adjust, the other is a pinnacle of high sonic quality, good engineering and user-friendliness. My opinion is that the Technics is the turntable that people who could only afford Regas wished they could afford. Get the Technics fixed and live happily ever after.

PS in the Technics forum is a thread about fixing the cue system of 1300s, if you have practical skill with small parts and hand tools it may save you a lot of money, viewtopic.php?f=16&t=67144

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by sturgus » 01 Mar 2016 04:22

I am just the opposite I would go for the Rega. They are both decent tables I have owned both, but I have to give the nod to the Rega. In my system it just sounded better. If the price was the same maybe a toss up but having to invest a couple more hundred in the Technics gives the Rega the edge. Also the Rega is more upgradable in the long run.

Guest

Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by Guest » 01 Mar 2016 08:04

Aesthetically, I would perhaps go for the Technics and I also find direct-drives quieter. However, the Rega will be easier to fix if it goes wrong.

The Regas may have a simple design but they were relatively expensive back in the day, when there was no economy RP1 available. I have a Rega Planar 3, which I'm sure cost me in the region of £200-300 in 1981/2 (a lot of money back then). The Planar 2 was less expensive but still not cheap and may still have been more expensive than the Technics. The Planars were highly desirable and the Planar 3 was a turntable bought by people (like me) who couldn't afford a Linn Sondek. It was thought that the money had gone into the engineering rather than looks. I don't remember the Technics machines being recommended back then, probably because many were direct-drives which were perceived as less 'musical' than belt-drives (something I am skeptical about).

It's a touch decision.

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by Paraneer » 01 Mar 2016 12:09

levman_0549 wrote:I have the ability to buy either of these tables and they are quite different.

I like them both but the Technics will cost more to get the cueing repaired $275 and to get a dust cover $150 or so. Total cost of Technics $650 or so.

I would think the Rega is the better table as far as a lower noise and the cheaper of the two after up-grades along with the cueing being functional right away
Yeah, you probably couldn't have picked two more different TT's to consider. These two hit all the hot buttons...

Direct Drive vs. Belt
Auto vs. Manual
Vintage vs. Modern

Remember that each have their fair share of advocates in each column. So there is no right or wrong choice. Only which is the better TT for you. And your second quote above is telling - you need to pay someone $275 to repair the cueing as your not comfortable doing it yourself. The Technics is pushing 40 years old and being DD and fully automatic, what happens when something else goes wrong again? Its a far more complex machine. And if you can't repair yourself, you'll need to go to the shop again. More money. Meanwhile the Rega, being much more simpler, keeps chugging along playing records.

I love vintage and have some myself but have been fortunate to be able to do repairs myself too. But I love music more and maybe the Rega is the better table for you.

Guest

Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by Guest » 01 Mar 2016 13:32

Paraneer, from another thread, I gather the Rega in question is a Planar 2 with refurbished R200 S-shaped arm, so the two turntables will be about the same age. I agree that while the Technics has some nice features such as quartz lock, as a thirty-odd-year old fully-automatic direct-drive, there is plenty to potentially go wrong with it that might be difficult to fix. Therefore, I think the Rega is a safer bet for a long-term investment.

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by Roberto C2H3 » 01 Mar 2016 17:52

Hola Steven :)

IMO, the Technics 13xx thru 15 xx MK2 is the best series ever put out by Technics. I'm greatly enjoying a 1400 MK2 I repaired, via the Shapeways part. It was a gigantic PITA to disassemble, and put back together. So USD 275 seems like a fair price.

Yes, you are risking other aspects going wrong further down the line. Mine is semi automatic, yours is fully. However, IMO, if something else does goes wrong it will probably be in auto loading and or auto return, probably not on the recently repaired cueing. So... if disaster strikes again in the future, you will be left with a more than decent manual table.

I suggest you breathe new life into the Technics, and enjoy the full auto features while they last :lol:

That 2.5 kilogram shinny platter is just a joy to see at work =D>

My vote is for the Technics, whose motor is apparently designed to spin forever.

Best from the Pampas,
roberto

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by Van_Isle » 01 Mar 2016 22:51

I've not had a SL-1300 Mark II Technics. I have had a SL-1401, SL-1700 ('Mk 1') and I have a SL-1210 Mk2 ... and a basket-case SL-1800 I'm working on. I do have an old Planar 2 like the one you are contemplating but the tonearm needs work ... and a later Planar 3 with an upgraded RB250 arm (which I also have used on the SL-1210) So I can't compare the two directly.

Is the Planar 2 really fully functional? Does the anti-skate work? If it does is it original belt or has it been replaced? If it's been replaced were the bearings adjusted properly when it was re-assembled?

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by cafe latte » 01 Mar 2016 23:14

Van_Isle wrote:I've not had a SL-1300 Mark II Technics. I have had a SL-1401, SL-1700 ('Mk 1') and I have a SL-1210 Mk2 ... and a basket-case SL-1800 I'm working on. I do have an old Planar 2 like the one you are contemplating but the tonearm needs work ... and a later Planar 3 with an upgraded RB250 arm (which I also have used on the SL-1210) So I can't compare the two directly.

Is the Planar 2 really fully functional? Does the anti-skate work? If it does is it original belt or has it been replaced? If it's been replaced were the bearings adjusted properly when it was re-assembled?
Go the Technics the Rega arm will be stuffed by now as the internal anti skate belt will have fallen to bits and they are a nightmare to fix. Also you are comparing a well damped Technics to a resonating boxy Rega. The Rega is a good turntable, but it is not as speed stable, or as quiet as the Tecnics. Dont let anyone put you off a Technics by telling you they are hard to fix as it is simply not true, fault finding is not that hard and bits are easy to find and cheap. I bought a whole main board as a spare for mt sl1210 which is basically all the electronics apart the psu even the motor for 60 bucks.
Chris

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by Roberto C2H3 » 02 Mar 2016 14:20

cafe latte wrote:Dont let anyone put you off a Technics by telling you they are hard to fix as it is simply not true, fault finding is not that hard and bits are easy to find and cheap. I bought a whole main board as a spare for mt sl1210 which is basically all the electronics apart the psu even the motor for 60 bucks.
Chris
Hola Chris;

It is not my intent to enter into an argument, much less with someone from whom I've learned a huge deal by reading your posts.

My experience with fixing my Technics SL-1400 MK2 was as follows:

1- Identification of the problem. Very simple.

2- Disassembly of the unit. Very simple, until I got to a couple of screws in the tone arm base. They simply would not budge. I tried all sorts of methods. Finally, I had to precision drill the heads off. Over thirty five years had almost welded the screw heads to the arm base plate. This is the PITA part :shock:

3- Replacement of the part via Shape Ways. You have to order AFTER you disassemble. Technics was not consistent in which bushing they used. Some were knurled, some were ridged, even on the same model. One is 1 mm thicker than the other. You can only identify this once you disassemble everything. Shapeways has two parts, one with 1 mm more in diameter than the other. I had to order the piece twice, oh well... my mistake.

So Chris, I agree in general with your statement regarding ease and low cost of repairing a Technics. Heck, I sniped an SL-1300 MK2 in ebay about a year ago with the busted cueing, which was sold as "for parts or repair", for USD 75. Cosmetically it looks great, original everything including cover, mat, head shell, etc. My brother is bringing it south and, if I'm lucky, I will be able to use the spare Shapeways part on it. However... my experience in disassembly of my SL-1400 is that it was, as you say, very easy to figure out, but it did have its really challenging moments.

Would I have paid USD 275 to have someone do this on my behalf? No way - I even re learned how to solder as the arm wires de soldered during my struggles with the pesky screws. However, if someone has the money to invest and is not comfortable with going down the do it yourself path, I suggest they invest and enjoy :) As I stated above, the SL 13xx to SL 15xx MK2 series is IMO the best Technics put out. I mean this series wise. My brother's SP-10 MK2 is clearly superior 8) Yet, a revived SL 1300 MK2 must be a thrill to observe at work =P~

These are just my opinions based on my limited experience. As always, YMMV :D

Best from Buenos Aires,
roberto

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by cafe latte » 02 Mar 2016 23:15

Roberto C2H3 wrote:
cafe latte wrote:Dont let anyone put you off a Technics by telling you they are hard to fix as it is simply not true, fault finding is not that hard and bits are easy to find and cheap. I bought a whole main board as a spare for mt sl1210 which is basically all the electronics apart the psu even the motor for 60 bucks.
Chris
Hola Chris;

It is not my intent to enter into an argument, much less with someone from whom I've learned a huge deal by reading your posts.

My experience with fixing my Technics SL-1400 MK2 was as follows:

1- Identification of the problem. Very simple.

2- Disassembly of the unit. Very simple, until I got to a couple of screws in the tone arm base. They simply would not budge. I tried all sorts of methods. Finally, I had to precision drill the heads off. Over thirty five years had almost welded the screw heads to the arm base plate. This is the PITA part :shock:

3- Replacement of the part via Shape Ways. You have to order AFTER you disassemble. Technics was not consistent in which bushing they used. Some were knurled, some were ridged, even on the same model. One is 1 mm thicker than the other. You can only identify this once you disassemble everything. Shapeways has two parts, one with 1 mm more in diameter than the other. I had to order the piece twice, oh well... my mistake.

So Chris, I agree in general with your statement regarding ease and low cost of repairing a Technics. Heck, I sniped an SL-1300 MK2 in ebay about a year ago with the busted cueing, which was sold as "for parts or repair", for USD 75. Cosmetically it looks great, original everything including cover, mat, head shell, etc. My brother is bringing it south and, if I'm lucky, I will be able to use the spare Shapeways part on it. However... my experience in disassembly of my SL-1400 is that it was, as you say, very easy to figure out, but it did have its really challenging moments.

Would I have paid USD 275 to have someone do this on my behalf? No way - I even re learned how to solder as the arm wires de soldered during my struggles with the pesky screws. However, if someone has the money to invest and is not comfortable with going down the do it yourself path, I suggest they invest and enjoy :) As I stated above, the SL 13xx to SL 15xx MK2 series is IMO the best Technics put out. I mean this series wise. My brother's SP-10 MK2 is clearly superior 8) Yet, a revived SL 1300 MK2 must be a thrill to observe at work =P~

These are just my opinions based on my limited experience. As always, YMMV :D

Best from Buenos Aires,
roberto
Hi Roberto,
I meant no offense, I for sure do not want to fall out with you either :)
I should probably have thought a bit longer about my post. I dont though think Technics are harder than any other TT to keep going, just different. Electronics wise they are of course more complex, but my point was the Technics based on the sl1200mk2 board wise are simple due to the number of parts available ie swapping out the board if you need to. Rewiring arms etc is something that is a challenge with all types of TT, actually the Rega Planar 2 will need far more than just a rewire it will need the antiskate belt doing too which I did for a friend and it is a really fiddly job. I was never a fan of the planar two, things IMO improved with later incarnations the arm for sure with the later rb250. Shame the question from the OP was not a bit more wide, I love Technics, they do what they should without fuss and they sound great, but I wont be selling my Commonwealth, my Orpheus, or my Lenco idler any time soon actually ever. Point is if the question was wider there are a lot of decent budget TT's out there that I would also be considering belt idler and DD if I was the OP.
Chris

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by levman_0549 » 03 Mar 2016 07:42

The Technics sold for $350 which was out of my price range for that table and all it was missing.

If Direct Drive is all that why is it that over 75% of super high end tables use belt drive systems?

There are a few Direct Drive tables that ate super expensive as well but the belt drive high ends are much more prevalent.

If the Rega is isolated properly I don't se how it can not be an improvement over a Technics SL-Q202 table selling for $225.

If I don't like the Rega I can return it but I have been told it will sound much better than any Techncics I could afford by a real die hard audiophile.

The VPI Scout is a excellent $1,000 plus table that's belt drive as well and will destroy any Technics table other than the untra high end that are still 30+ years old.

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by cafe latte » 03 Mar 2016 09:13

levman_0549 wrote:The Technics sold for $350 which was out of my price range for that table and all it was missing.

If Direct Drive is all that why is it that over 75% of super high end tables use belt drive systems?

There are a few Direct Drive tables that ate super expensive as well but the belt drive high ends are much more prevalent.

If the Rega is isolated properly I don't se how it can not be an improvement over a Technics SL-Q202 table selling for $225.

If I don't like the Rega I can return it but I have been told it will sound much better than any Techncics I could afford by a real die hard audiophile.

The VPI Scout is a excellent $1,000 plus table that's belt drive as well and will destroy any Technics table other than the untra high end that are still 30+ years old.
Nothing wrong with belt drive, but the reason there are more high end belt drives is they are cheaper to produce plain and simple nothing to do what is the best drive method. The most accurate spin ie wow and flutter and speed are direct drives, but to produce an original direct drive ie not steal the board and motor from someone else costs a fortune. You can set up a company to produce belt drive turntables in your back shed. This is the only reason that there are more belt drive turntables, nothing to do with quality, just money..
Chris

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by Roberto C2H3 » 03 Mar 2016 15:43

cafe latte wrote: Hi Roberto,
I meant no offense, I for sure do not want to fall out with you either :)
Chris
Hola Chris :D

No offense taken :D So much of communication is non verbal nor written - posts are sometimes misinterpreted. All is well Chris, and thank you for taking the time to respond to mine.

Best from Buenos Aires,
roberto

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Re: Technics SL-1310 MK II vs. Rega Planar II

Post by sylvain999 » 04 Mar 2016 02:40

If you have the money, buy both, try both, let your ears decide,sell the one you will not keep,then put the money on refurbishing, or do it yourself, plenty of people here to help you if you have problems along the way.

If you ask me, the Rega is better sounding and simpler. But the Technics is a beauty. It doesn't sound bad either.1300 MK2 to 1500 Mk2 probably had the best sounding Technics tonarm to my ears at least.

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