PRO-JECT RM-5.1 SE Turntable with Sumiko Blue Point No.2 Cartridge
- Dark Gray Piano Lacquer Plinth
- 33 and 45 rpm (78 rpm optional)
- MM cartridge type
- Sumiko Blue Point No.2 Cartridge
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The RM-5.1 SE makes a stunning design and audio performance statement in a “value oriented” performance package featuring a Sumiko Blue Point No.2 high-output moving coil cartridge that is factory mounted for your convenience. A resonance-optimized platter made from MDF with integrated vinyl mat rests upon an MDF plinth with a suspended motor assembly optimized for low resonance and speed stability. The table incorporates a stainless steel axle that runs on a Teflon bearing plate in a bronze housing for lower wow-and-flutter and superior speed accuracy. Three-point aluminum cone feet further reduce noise and vibration. A fixed headshell 9” carbon fiber tonearm with precision Swiss bearings and rigid carbon fiber arm tube provides superior tracking and cartridge control. Accurate adjustment of both VTA and azimuth is easy. Detachable interconnect cable and a screw down record clamp are included.
Top Customer Reviews
I scored a slightly damaged RM-5.1 SE from a generous and honest Amazon seller, Dedicated Audio, for $650. And, note that it came with the Sumiko Blue Point #2 cartridge, worth $500 separately. Do the math-even if the turntable was of poor quality, that's an amazing deal! The same needle is paired with much higher end tables, if that convinces anyone.
So the cartridge is really good. It's low-output, so get a quality preamp. Mine is the A/D by Rega. Works well.
Now, about the table. It's beautiful, for starts. The dark grey piano lacquer looks almost black in most lighting situations. The power button is thoughtfully hidden under the plinth which is remarkably sexy, even for Pro-Ject, a very progressively-minded company. Unfortunately, the belt and motor are also hidden, this time less-conveniently. To switch between 33 and 45 rpms, you have to take off the platter. It's not a huge deal, especially if you appreciate the mechanical nature of 'tables. But it's a little annoying. Most of my collection is 33s, so I'm totally happy with it.
The tonearm, Pro-Ject's 9c carbon arm, is well-praised in audiophile circles. In my experience, it tracks even my most warped records and looks good doing it. It can be adjusted in about every way imaginable. I used a digital scale to make sure it was balanced properly.
One thing missing from the setup is a good acrylic cover for the table. I bought one on eBay for around $130 or so. It is essential. Oh-and don't buy Pro-Ject's cover, the Cover It. It's flimsy. I've read too many bad reviews, and my friend Tyler bought one and sent it back [he even paid return shipping!].
I run it through a JD302CRC tube amp that I bought used [totally worth it! I saved hundreds!]. It's 50w/channel, plenty of juice from the signal path. Through Sound Dynamics speakers and powered sub, there's a small house worth of sound. If I could wish for one thing, it would be bass detail. That's more of a subwoofer issue, I think, than anything else.
Sounds gorgeous. That's the bottom line.
I included a picture. In the future, I may invest in a metal chassis stand for the amp and table. For now, I'm doing really well. My whole system cost me around $1500, included every last component from cables to speakers to table [my father in law did happen to give me the speakers], and it'll stand shoulder-to-shoulder with systems that cost much more.
If you're looking for quality analog music, look no further than Pro-Ject. They are progressively-minded, uniquely-styled, and reproduce vinyl remarkably well. Especially for the price point.