How do I upgrade my Hi-Fi system?

How do I upgrade my Hi-Fi system?

In the second of our ‘How do I upgrade my Hi-Fi equipment?’ shopping guides, maPlatine.com shifts the focus to your Hi-Fi system. The aim of this guide is to give you the best possible advice on how to improve your Hi-Fi system and achieve excellent sound quality. We hope that you will find our comprehensive guide useful and interesting!

1. Replacing a phono preamplifier

2. Phono cables

3. Power outlets, power filters and multi-sockets

4. Hi-Fi furniture and mounts

     A. Turntable wall mounts

     B. Hi-Fi furniture

 

 

1. Replacing a phono preamplifier

If you’re upgrading your analogue system, you may want to think about replacing your phono stage

The first thing to bear in mind is that the phono preamp you choose will depend predominantly on your cartridge. So if you have an MC cartridge you'll need an MC preamplifier, and vice versa - you'll need an MM preamp if your Hi-Fi system uses an MM cartridge. However, most preamps recommended here have both MM and MC functions.

 

Thorens MM008 phono preamp

 

If you don't have a phono preamp and your analogue system still works, that means that your amplifier is integrated and has a phono output. However, if your budget allows for it, we strongly recommend having one phono stage per piece of equipment in order to achieve maximum high fidelity in sound. That amounts to a minimum of one phono preamp and one integrated amp (amp + preamp).

Like turntable cartridges, your choice will depend on your budget as well as your musical tastes and current system. For more advice on how to choose the right preamp, please feel free to contact our customer service department by email (contact@maplatine.com). We are also available for face-to-face appointments at our private auditorium in Rennes, where you can test our products and receive personalised advice from our technicians. Find out more about our auditorium HERE.

 

Auditorium in Rennes

 

2. Phono cables

Phono cables are also a good way of upgrading your turntable! It is definitely in your interest to replace your original cable with a higher quality phono cable, particularly if you have a high quality turntable and cartridge.

 

Cables are extremely important because they transmit the audio signal between the various pieces of equipment that make up your Hi-Fi system. Therefore, the material used to make them and which transmits the signal is of utmost importance. For example, gold is an excellent conductor and is the material used to make the best cables on the market. This means that less information is lost in transmission, resulting in a more high fidelity and detailed sound quality. Connectors made from cheaper material have the opposite effect, ‘stifling’ the signal and producing a sound with less precision.

 

Phono cables can either be RCA or DIN connectors. This choice will depend on your preamplifier. At maPlatine.com, we have our own favourites: the Furutech AG-12 phono cable, the Pro-Ject Connect It cable (perfect with the Debut Carbon turntable), the Ortofon 6NX-TSW-1010 cable, and, for slightly higher budgets, cables by Transparent (The Musiclink, The Musiclink Plus, The Musiclink Reference, etc.).

 

Furutech AG-12 phono cable

 Pro-Ject Connect It RCA CC phono cable

 

However, it should be noted that some turntables have so-called ‘captive’ phono cables, which means they are directly integrated into the record player or tonearm and cannot be replaced. This is true of the Rega RP1 turntable, for instance.

 

Rega RP1 turntable

 

3. Power outlets, power filters and multi-sockets

Furutech plugs have proven very popular here at maPlatine.com, with an excellent reputation among audiophiles. They are demagnetised and therefore highly effective at reducing distortion - A sure-fire way to improve sound quality! With a Furutech plug, the sound is more precise, detailed and transparent.

Furutech Shuko FI-E-11 Cu connector

 

These plugs can be made from copper, gold-plated copper, or rhodium. Most of them undergo a treatment called ‘Alpha’, invented by Furutech itself, which involves freezing the metal parts of the conductors at temperatures between -196° and -250°). The electrical conductivity of these plugs makes signal transmission significantly easier and more powerful. In short, Furutech plugs are a must-have!

 

 

4. Hi-Fi furniture and mounts

 

 

A. Turntable wall mounts

Wall mounts are a great way to create optimal listening conditions for your turntable. They attach to the wall and use ‘suspension’ technology to isolate your turntable from vibrations, improving the precision and dynamic range of the sound quality. They come in different sizes, such as the Pro-Ject Wallmount It 1, 2 and 3 for small and medium-sized turntables. For larger record players, the the Wallmount It 5 is ideal. 

 

Pro-Ject Wallmount it 2

 

The RP8 and RP10 turntables can be fixed onto the Rega adaptor - in fact, it was specifically designed for them. It is made using aluminium and rubber, and provides maximum protection for your record player.

Rega adaptator for RP8 et RP10 turntables

 

 

B. Hi-Fi furniture

If you do not have any suitable furniture for your Hi-Fi system, we recommend the highly practical Hi-Fi furniture by Norstone. As well as being extremely well-built, it is effective at reducing vibrations for music of all genres. Norstone furniture has multiple shelves, giving you enough space for all the components of your Hi-Fi system. It also adds a sophisticated, modern touch to any room it’s in.

 

Norstone furniture

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We hope that we have given you as much information and advice as possible on how to improve your Hi-Fi system. We hope that this shopping guide answered all your questions.

 

You can find our shopping guide for upgrading your turntable HERE!