The 3 ways to setup a Rega arm

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MetalT75
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The 3 ways to setup a Rega arm

Post by MetalT75 » 15 Jun 2019 23:20

Setting up a Rega arm is easy when you have a (digital) gauge and it is essential to have one. You can’t set it up without one.

There are basically 3 ways of setting up a Rega arm, the ones with VTF dial. Which one do you use and why?

1. Use Rega instructions to balance the tonearm and set the recommended VTF with the dial. You need a gauge because the dial is not accurate (manufacturing tolerances of the spring etc.). Use the dial and a gauge to get the correct VTF. (I’ve had 2 Regas and both of them had a dial that was way off)

2. Turn the dial past 3 to deactivate the VTF spring and set up the correct VTF with the counter weight and a gauge. (This method is favoured by the old school)

3. Like 1. but set the dial to recommended VTF of the cartridge and use the counter weight and a gauge to set the correct VTF.

What is the real difference? Nothing except the position of the counter weight and the tension of the dial spring. Some say that the spring creates resonance which can be heard. Well, human hearing is not THAT good. So basically it comes back to the behaviour of the tonearm with warped records when the arm moves up and down. What I could think of, it’s about the speed the tonearm reacts to the warps. What do you think?

Japi Roelofs
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Re: The 3 ways to setup a Rega arm

Post by Japi Roelofs » 15 Jun 2019 23:45

Isn't there a 4th way? Split the VTF between the spring and the counterweight. So f.i. with 2 gr VTF, put 1 gram on the CW, then the other gram with the spring.
Not sure if there's any benefits...

MetalT75
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Re: The 3 ways to setup a Rega arm

Post by MetalT75 » 16 Jun 2019 00:58

That too and also if you put 1/3 or 1/4 with the spring and rest of it with the CW or countless of other variations. 😅 You need a gauge anyway.

The 3 ways I listed are the most common I’ve seen. The point is that does it really matter how you set up the arm if the VTF is correct (withing a reasonable range which is also a matter of debate)? I bet the only difference is with extreme circumtances happening with really warped records and how the arm can handle those warps.

I have a couple of records that are so warped that I can a heard a ”thud” every time the stylus goes up and down in the warp in the start grooves or between the songs but not during the songs.

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