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Linn Ittok LVII v RB300

Discussion in 'audio' started by Bagga, Feb 17, 2009.

  1. Bagga

    Bagga Our amps go to 11!

    I have an LP12 (early 199?s to Valhalla) currently fitted with a standard RB300 / Denon DL160.

    Can anyone gve me a view as to whether changing the arm to an Ittok LVII would make significant sonic improvements? I have always slightly regretted buying a used Sondek without an Ittok/Ekos arm and the Linn dealer was not that keen on fitting the RB300.

    I do think that the RB300 is a good arm and was a giant killer in some ways when introduced, but don't know how well suited it is to the LP12?

    I remember being blown away as a student spending my grant (SHSHSH!) on a new Rega 3/RB300/A&RP77 (sadly stolen 10 years later:mad:) at the Audio Centre in Sheffield (1984) by a demo of an LP12/Ittok/Asak /£5k of Naim amps / Kans.

    Other ideas have been looking at modified / Origin Live arms. But would those based on the Rega design still have fndamental compatibility issues with the LP12?

    I suppose the basic questions are:

    1. Is there any fundamental issue between the LP12/RB300 (+ OL variants)?
    2. Would an Ittok sound better? (EKOS must be over budget??)
    3. What other options should I consider - if I were spending £300-400 max (including used) arms?

    P.S. -- spent most of the rest of my grant at the Record Collector in Broomhill, and in the Frog and Parrot!:D

    All sensible help and feedback would be appreciated. (No manufacturer- bashing please!):confused:

    P.S. Apologies - have just seen a similar active thread! ..would still value any added thoughts from the perspective that I have given....
  2. CJ1045

    CJ1045 You want Briks with that?

    I would buy one, try it/compare it with the Rega and then sell it if you don't think it worth it. There is not a lot of risk to this strategy and you should only lose out on postage one way at most. For second hand gear a trip to ebay can be pretty cheap. I have deon this on a couple of things I wanted to try out and I am in profit!!

  3. Nik

    Nik pfm Member

    Received wisdom at the time was that the Rega's mounting (single large nut) wasn't an ideal mechanical match with the LP12's bearing/subchassis fixing but that this was largely solved with the Cirkus. Although I have an RB300 (on a modded AR XAU), I've never taken the time and trouble to try it on the LP12 (Lingo-Cirkus-Ekos-Arkiv). I'd need to put the Arkiv in the Rega (which has an Elys in it) for a proper comparison and there are just too many things that I could mess up! And I'd need a Rega-drilled armboard which I'd have no other use for.

    IMO the Ekos was clearly better than the LVII but the LVIII, which I never heard, must've closed the gap.
  4. spxy

    spxy pfm Member

    Most of the problem with an rega arm on an LP12 is in the fact that a the arm cable is too thin for the p-clip to hold it tightly.

    Stuffing some wadding in there an making sure the clip is really tight around the cable would help if you haven't done so already.
  5. hifi_dave

    hifi_dave Hi-Fi Retailer

    I've put several RB300's on LP12's and there is no problem, even the P-clip can be sorted. The main problem, back in the day, was that Linn saw the RB300 as a threat.

    Having said that, the Ittok is a better sounding arm on the LP12 and is worth a try. As a previous post said, if you don't like it, you can always sell it again on E-Bay.

    YNWOAN 100% Analogue

    Both still there (mostly CD in RC though - bah).
  7. DSJR

    DSJR Between us and them

    I think the RB300 works better on Cirkussed decks than previous ones, although I too sold several LP12/RB300 combinations at the time with no problems if the cartridge was carefully chosen - most popular pickups back then had a pronounced bass up/top down balance.

    I'd probably suggest upgrades to the LP12 before even thinking about Ittok or Ekos, but as you have a bee in your bonnet about never having owned an Ittok I know what you're going to do. Just make sure you keep the Rega arm for now, carefully packed away if necessary.
  8. deserter

    deserter pfm Member

    I had, as a second deck, an LP12 with RB300 and ATOC9, for several years, it worked really well. I think the sound is so different from the Ittok sound you just have to have a listen and see which you prefer. MY choice would be for the Rega, but thats probably because I am approaching old fartdom. The Ittok is livelier.
  9. Bagga

    Bagga Our amps go to 11!

    ..and the "Audio Centre" (on West St?) - I think this is long gone! ?

    ..t'was a big naughty of them to play me the LINN/NAM system when I was a student buying a Rega Planar 3 feeding a ropey amp (AIWA?) and Speakers (Genesis V6). Luckilly I now have a little more spending power and an understanding wife!

    ..remember buying 21 used albums in the Record Collector in the second term of my first year -that same time I got the Rega 3! Some fab albums too! Great days!

    Thanks to all for advice! I am not unhappy with the sound of the LP12 and RB300 which was well fitted at Billy Vee and hence may save my money for more music for ther time being and consider arm replacements / upgrades (OL?) later! Just though I'd ask as there are a couple of ITTOKS going for a song on ePAY!
  10. DSJR

    DSJR Between us and them

    They won't be going for a song much longer I reckon unless they're shagged.......
  11. Bagga

    Bagga Our amps go to 11!

    No! I had an upgrade bug and asked for advice here; have read some useful thoughts; and I have decided that there is no clear case and I will stick with what I've got on the tonearm front!

    Maybe one day I'll trade in the whole turntable for a more modern version LP12 ASTRONOMIKALOUS with the latest SHEDKLOADS arm..... but I'm enjoying my vinyl now anyway!

    Also looking forward to getting my AAA5......
  12. Bagga

    Bagga Our amps go to 11!

    Early days in the auctions - but they will shoot up in price (beyond a reasonable value) towards auction end no doubt! Certainly one is advertised by a main Linn dealer..so should be OK!?

    I'll pass anyway
  13. John P

    John P Tech talk

    The Nima is imo, a cracker. I have done a few now on LP12's and I think that with the right cartridge, works superbly. I don't care much for the ittok and think it's highly overated for what it does.

    Strangely, just done an LP12 with a Nima using a Lyra Helikon and puts my DV17d3 to shame.
  14. Nik

    Nik pfm Member

    I think that's a good idea. I bought a new LP12 in the late 80s with LVX and K9. After a while I upgraded to Ittok and Karma. Further upgrades to Lingo, Ekos, and Troika were just too expensive so I eventually sold the lot (someone flew over from Greece for it!) and bought a used Lingo-Cirkus-Ekos-Arkiv combo from a much more reasonable amount.
  15. CJ1045

    CJ1045 You want Briks with that?

    An Ittok went on ebay at the weekend for £455

  16. Bagga

    Bagga Our amps go to 11!

    Amazing! Does anyone know what Ittoks cost new when last sold?

    Call me a cynic! I think Epay is potentially a fantastic marketplace and great sales channel for genuine businesses to sell more widely. However, I do get slightly suspicious of the "has been in storage for last 15 years" messages on EPAY regarding Ittoks / other Hifi that could be worn out. I am sure that many a "story" on ebay is made up for effect by some unscrupulous dealers in attempt to improve buyer copnfidence.

    Its a shame really as genuine sellers with a genuine story would be tarred with the same brush ..I guess buying and selling in the classifieds here might be a safer bet?

    ....A new Roksan Nima is less at £415 ish.....
  17. flatpopely

    flatpopely Prog Rock/Moderator

    I went from an RB250 to an Ittok, you won't be disappointed. Good as the RB250 was it was no Ittok. I placed a WTB add in the classifieds. I got one in great condition but with notchy bearings. I sent it up to AudioOrigami for a bearing rebuild and complete rewire. The whole thing cost me <£400 and IMHO its a stunner! I recently replaced an OC9MLII (great) with a Troika and the whole deck just sings with my style (Prog) of music.

  18. Biggus-Dickkus

    Biggus-Dickkus pfm Member

    I've seen Ittoks regularly go for in excess of £350 and as much as £475 for a nice one, so I doubt you will ever see a cheap one on eBay, unless it's shagged. A mint Ittok LVIII went for £870 a few months ago. Still a bloody good arm the Ittok IMO.
  19. ian r

    ian r 401's Nakman

    This thread is interesting to me as Im still undecided about leaving the r300 on my 401 or using my original from new Itok 11 and selling the 300 and lp12 on.

    I really must get the 401 out of its workbench plinth but cant afford the clearly superior slate plinth and dear mikes dont hit the WAF button hereabouts so I have to do it myself

    hmm longer evenings coming up might help
  20. Mullardman

    Mullardman Resident Philistine

    Don't hold me to this, but I think they were a bit shy of £700. (For the LV III)

    I think the last version appeared in the early nineties. I bought an Akito to go on another deck around 93. From memory I'd say the MK2 Akito (possibly the biggest con in the history of audio) was released around 95/6 to replace the Ittok. I am happy to be corrected on any of this by less senile members!

    I have a rather nice LVIII. :)

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