Are you a vinyl enthusiast looking to upgrade your turntable?
The Rega RP1 is a popular choice for those seeking high-quality sound without breaking the bank. However, some users have reported issues with skipping records towards the end of play.
This may be due to the lack of an anti-skate setting on the RP1. In this article, we’ll explore what anti-skate is, why it’s important, and whether or not the Rega RP1 has this feature.
So sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the world of turntable calibration.
Does The Rega RP1 Turntable Have An Anti-Skate Setting
Anti-skate is a crucial feature in turntables that helps to keep the stylus aligned with the groove of the vinyl record. It applies a slight frictional force to the tonearm, preventing it from skipping or skating across the record.
Unfortunately, the Rega RP1 does not have an anti-skate setting. This can be a problem for some users, especially those who have upgraded their cartridge to one with a lower tracking force.
Without anti-skate, the stylus may not stay in the groove towards the end of play, causing skipping and potentially damaging the record.
What Is Anti-Skate And Why Is It Important?
Anti-skate is a feature that is found on most turntables, and it is important for maintaining good channel balance, minimizing distortion, and reducing stylus and record wear. The feature applies a small outward force to the tonearm, counteracting the tendency of the arm to move inward (skate) toward the center of the record. This is especially important as the tonearm approaches the end of the record, where skating can be more prevalent.
The anti-skate setting is typically adjustable on turntables that have this feature. It is important to note that some turntables may not have a manual adjustment, but this does not mean that they do not have anti-skate. It may be handled internally and preset at a fixed value by the turntable’s manufacturer, especially on turntables that utilize an integrated cartridge.
To set the anti-skate on a turntable with an adjustable control, it is recommended to adjust it to the same value as the vertical tracking force (VTF) used. This will get you in the ballpark, but it is important to listen carefully to the last few minutes of a record to determine if more or less anti-skate is needed. Inner groove distortion can be quite noticeable, so it is important to adjust the anti-skate value until distortion is minimized.
How Does Anti-Skate Work On Turntables?
Anti-skate works by applying a small outward force to the tonearm, which counteracts the inward force that pulls the tonearm towards the center of the record as it approaches the end of the groove. This inward force is known as “skating” and can cause distortion, uneven channel balance, and increased wear on both the stylus and record.
The anti-skate feature is typically adjustable on turntables, with a user-adjustable control in the form of a pre-calibrated knob. It is important to note that some turntables may not have this manual adjustment, but may have it preset at a fixed value by the manufacturer.
To set the anti-skate on a turntable with an adjustable control, it is recommended to adjust it to the same value as the vertical tracking force (VTF) used. This will get you in the ballpark, but further adjustments may be needed depending on the distortion and channel balance observed during playback.
While anti-skate schemes perform a useful function in minimizing asymmetric wear of styli and grooves, they do not eliminate it entirely. Linear-tracking turntables were invented in part to eliminate the possibility of skating.
The Rega RP1 Turntable: Features And Specifications
The Rega RP1 turntable is a popular entry-level audiophile turntable that has gained a reputation for its high-quality construction and affordable price. It features a minimalistic design with Rega’s trademark handmade construction, making it an attractive option for those who want a reliable and stylish turntable.
One of the standout features of the RP1 is its RB101 tonearm, which is significantly lighter than its predecessor, the RB100. The one-piece construction from headshell to counterweight stub ensures minimal resonance, providing a stable platform for the cartridge. The tonearm comes with an Ortofon OM5e moving magnet cartridge already fitted and aligned, making setup easy and straightforward.
The RP1 also boasts a new 24V, low noise, synchronous motor, making it the first budget design from Rega to include one. A new motor PCB and aluminum pulley sit along with a new plinth plus 23mm phenolic platter. The re-designed bearing sits above three new noise-reducing feet, providing a stable base for the turntable.
However, as mentioned earlier, the RP1 does not have an anti-skate setting. This can be a drawback for some users who have upgraded their cartridge to one with a lower tracking force. It is important to note that without anti-skate, the stylus may not stay in the groove towards the end of play, causing skipping and potentially damaging the record.
The Issue Of Skipping Records On The RP1
One of the most common issues reported by RP1 users is skipping records, particularly towards the end of play. This can be frustrating and concerning, especially for those who have invested in a high-quality cartridge.
The problem stems from the fact that the RP1 does not have an anti-skate setting. This means that the tonearm is not applying any frictional force to counteract the lateral force created by the groove of the record.
When a cartridge with a lower tracking force, such as the Ortofon Blue, is installed on the RP1, it can exacerbate this issue. The lower tracking force means that there is less downward force on the stylus, making it more prone to skipping or skating across the record.
To mitigate this issue, some users have suggested adjusting the tracking force to a slightly higher setting, although this may not be ideal for all cartridges. Others have recommended using a record clamp or weight to help keep the record in place on the platter.
Ultimately, the lack of an anti-skate setting on the RP1 can be frustrating for some users, but it does not detract from the overall quality of the turntable. With proper setup and care, skipping records can be minimized and users can continue to enjoy their vinyl collection on this high-quality turntable.
Does The Rega RP1 Have An Anti-Skate Setting?
No, the Rega RP1 turntable does not have an anti-skate setting. This means that users who have upgraded their cartridge to one with a lower tracking force may experience skipping towards the end of play. It is important to note that anti-skate is a critical feature in turntables that helps to keep the stylus aligned with the groove of the vinyl record, preventing damage to both the record and stylus.
To ensure optimal vinyl playback on the Rega RP1, it is recommended to calibrate the turntable for the ideal stylus force setting depending on the cartridge used. This can be done by adjusting the counterweight at the other end of the tonearm assembly. Additionally, it is important to make sure that the turntable is perfectly leveled horizontally before use, as any tilt can affect playback quality.
Alternatives To Anti-Skate: Tips For Improving Playback On The RP1
While the lack of an anti-skate setting on the Rega RP1 may seem like a deal-breaker for some, there are a few tips and tricks that can help improve playback without it.
Firstly, make sure that your turntable is properly leveled and that your cartridge is aligned using an appropriate protractor. This will ensure that the stylus is tracking correctly and reduce the likelihood of skipping.
Another option is to adjust the vertical tracking force (VTF) of your cartridge. This can be done by adjusting the counterweight on the back of the tonearm. A higher VTF can help reduce skipping, but be careful not to set it too high as this can cause excessive wear on your records.
Finally, some users have found success in using a record weight or clamp. These can help to stabilize the record and reduce vibrations, which can lead to skipping.
While these tips may not completely eliminate the need for anti-skate, they can certainly help to improve playback on the Rega RP1. With a little bit of experimentation and patience, you can achieve excellent sound quality from this turntable.