Project Essential 2 Blk
|Price:||£179.00 FREE UK delivery.|
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- Belt Drive
- Award Winning Turntable
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|Sold By||Richer Sounds||Joe-Audio||Stereo Solutions||Amazon.co.uk||Audible Fidelity||Amazon.co.uk|
|Item Dimensions||39.9 x 48.3 x 24.9 cm||43 x 33 x 11.2 cm||10 x 10 x 10 cm||43.18 x 9.14 x 30.48 cm||41.5 x 32 x 11.8 cm||36 x 35.6 x 9.8 cm|
|Item Weight||4 kg||5 kg||6 kg||2.7 kg||5.6 kg||3 kg|
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A GENUINE HI-FI TURNTABLE AT AN AFFORDABLE PRICE Unlike many other turntables around this price, the Pro-Ject Essential 2 has all the elements of a proper hi-fi turntable - just at a lower price. Starting with the deck itself, a new motor control makes the Essential 2 quieter and minimises unwanted vibrations. The main bearing is made from stainless steel and runs within a bronze bushing with Teflon coating. This type of build integrity is usually reserved for much more expensive designs and gives the Essential 2 a precison of sound that's a class above. SINGLE PIECE, ALUMINIUM TONEARM Continuing its hi-fi credentials, the Pro-Ject Essential II is supplied with a good quality tonearm. Unlike inferior plastic and steel versions, the Essential's tonearm is made from a single piece of aluminium, making it both light and rigid. The more rigid the more precisely it tracks, making listening to your records a more involving experience. For long-lasting quality, the tonearm is fitted with sapphire bearings. FACTORY FITTED ORTOFON OM5E CARTRIDGE The final flourish to this irresistible turntable is the inclusion of an Ortofon OM5e cartridge. Usually valued at over 50 on its own, it's a fantastic bonus to have this bundled in with the turntable. With its elliptical shaped stylus, it provides a balanced and distortion-free sound that's also kind to your records in terms of its low wear rate. A DESIGN CLASSIC In a classic case of form following function, the Project Essential 2 offers effortless style through its pared down minimalism. To emphasize the style statement, you can now order the Essential 2 in red or white as well as the more traditional black.
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Complicated to set up but luckily my dad (whom I bought it for) knows what to do with counter weights etc. I had no idea being from the MP3 generation.
The manufacturer has been very clever in producing a clean modern design using relatively inexpensive components built to a high degree of precision. The machine is delivered very well packaged in a partly disassembled form. The assembly instructions are clear and easy to follow. The excellent Ortofon OM5e MM cartridge is factory fitted and aligned so only the final tracking weight has to be adjusted by the user, a simple task well described in the instructions. The anti-skating device looks a bit flimsy but works on the same principle as in much more expensive pickup arms.
In use the TT looks good and is protected from dust by a neat well fitting hinged cover. The belt driven platter rotates smoothly and silently with no noticeable wow or flutter. The belt is a little tricky to fit the first time but after a little practice is easy. Changing the speed between 33 and 45 rpm involves manually moving the belt between the grooves on the motor drive wheel. Not a problem for me as I only use 33 rpm records. If you often switch speeds this could be inconvenient.
What does it sound like? This is the surprise - it sounds like an expensive high end turntable, pickup and cartridge when used with good reproducing equipment - in my case with a Quad amplifier and speakers. It does require a little effort from the user. While it has a nice smooth pickup raising and lowering mechanism there is no automatic switch off at the end of the record and as mentioned changing speed us a bit of a chore.
My overall impression is very positive. This is a really good turntable and the whole package is remarkably good value.
It's definitely not the cheapest out there but you're paying for quality. Very solid build quality throughout and wonderful sound quality. It's worth the spending a little more for the depth and warmth of the sound.
A little difficult to set up to begin with, the band that turns the deck is exposed and a little awkward to place.
Also it's possibly one of the best looking turntables out there. Simple and minimal design but still easy to use.
This Pro-Ject Essential II is a completely manual turntable - no auto return etc, and probably all the better for it. It does mean you have to lift the arm at the end of the side. Two other minor points: You have to be careful, when lifting a record from the turntable, not to dislodge the drive belt from the edge of the platter. The little anti-skating weight is a bit hard to attach, and its nylon thread can slip off its lug at the back of the arm, so overall the turntable needs needs operating with some care.
The main result though is that I'm enjoying some of my old music again - a great purchase!
The sound is amazing and it is great to have some feeling to the old classic tunes I have on LP (Beatles and Status Quo, ELO etc), also the new LPs I have (Oasis and Ocean Colour Scene) sound more human than the digital alternatives.
If you are thinking about getting a turntable I would of course recommend this one but before you purchase it I would urge you to read the following:
Set Up. This system does require a bit of set up work, it took me about 30 mins after I watched the You Tube video and read the manual. Plus you have to manually move the belt if you want to change from 45 to 33 RPM (its easy but don’t try it after a few beers!!!).
Amp. You will need an amp that has a Phono input and preferably a ground connection. If you only have a line input you will need a pre amp. If you don’t have a ground connection it will work but you will get a slightly louder hiss.
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