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The Needle Doctor has closed its doors

Rudy

ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ
Staff member
Site Admin
It's a shame. I remember hearing from some fellow vinyl fans that Needle Doc closed up shop in September, with only one announcement online (and not even on their own site). What really surprised me about it was that Raskin did not try to sell the business to someone else. Vinyl is booming in terms of physical sales, and it's a great time to be in it.

I met one of their guys early this year at AXPONA, and he reintroduced me to an album I hadn't even thought of since the late 70s or early 80s. A year or two prior, they had a demo of the Hana cartridge that everyone since has raved about.

I don't know if LP Gear is still around--they might be. All that really leaves online are clueless behemoths like Amazon and a shop like Music Direct (Chicago).
 

Harry

Charter A&M Corner Member
Thread Starter
Staff member
Moderator
I think I ordered a stylus from them earlier this year. The Ortofon 320 that I had originally was starting to sound a little sad, so I picked up another one for around $50 from Needle Doctor. In the meantime, I had switched to an AudioTechnica cartridge that someone had recommended and I thought it was OK. I need to get the new stylus into the 320 and put it back in the turntable.

I just looked and LP Gear is still there, and they sell that 320 stylus for around the same price.
 

Rudy

ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ
Staff member
Site Admin
OK, that's good--at least someone is still selling those 320 replacements. Someone on PS Audio's forum mentioned they tried a test order on the Needle Doc site but was either not able to place anything in the cart, or they were not allowed to continue with the checkout process.

Back in the early to mid 80s, I used to buy all my cartridges and styli from Lyle Cartridges in New York. They used to advertise with a small ad in Stereo Review. LP Gear actually has some unusual and rare Grado replacement styli that are not available anywhere else. Some I know are buying older Grado Signature bodies and putting these higher-dollar styli in them with great results.
 

GDB2LV

Well-Known Member
Hey Rudy! What is your opinion of the Fluance RT-85 turntable, if you have one? I hear they really put a very warm sound to vinyl with the
Ortofon 2m blue cartridge that’s included. Kind of pricey at $499.00. Is it worth the investment? Thanks for your opinion/ advice.
Ken
 

Rudy

ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ
Staff member
Site Admin
Let me read up on it. $499 is kind of a sweet spot for turntables, so the Fluance is one among a few good choices. I'll take a look this evening and let you know!
 

Rudy

ᕦ(ò_óˇ)ᕤ
Staff member
Site Admin
Hey Rudy! What is your opinion of the Fluance RT-85 turntable, if you have one? I hear they really put a very warm sound to vinyl with the Ortofon 2m blue cartridge that’s included. Kind of pricey at $499.00. Is it worth the investment? Thanks for your opinion/ advice.
Ken
Some are fans of the Ortofon 2M series, but I am not one of them. Many others are happy with them, though, and the Blue is definitely an improvement over the Red.

The RT-85 seems to be the top of the line. The acrylic platter has the advantage of having more mass than the aluminum/rubber platter, which will improve the speed stability (it's a "flywheel effect"). And with the resonance of the acrylic being close to that of vinyl, it will dissipate some of the stray energy. That appears to be the only difference between this and the RT-84, which is $50 less. (I'm sure you could upgrade the platter later on, but it would probably cost more than $50.)

I suppose $499 might seem like a lot of money, especially since some of us remember when good turntables were less than half that price. But with inflation, these work out to a similar price but have better performance than many of the turntables available back then. The reviews overall seem to be positive for these Fluance turntables, and you probably couldn't improve much on it unless you spent more than double the price.
 

GDB2LV

Well-Known Member
Thanks for your advise. The AT&T tech installer, saw my Audio Technica AT-LP120USB and told me about the Fluance RT85. I really like the Audio Technica. It’s a nice moderate priced turntable, and highly rated for its price, but the Fluance really sounds like a wise investment in the next year. Thanks again Rudy.
 
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