Belt Bake Off

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Dr_Eddie
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Belt Bake Off

Post by Dr_Eddie » Tue Oct 11, 2016 7:32 pm

As most of you know, the drive belt on the LP12 has 4 possible permutations of being fitted to the deck. Inside out or Upside down both with 2 rotations clockwise or anti clockwise. There is a sonic difference and it is quite repeatable. I had forgotten that during the Kandid fitment Peter noticed my belt had stretched and was floppy. After telling me, I asked him to fit a new one. Peter always marks the outside of the belt, so you don't get it inside out.

But there is still 2 ways on it can go and believe it of not it makes a difference. In fact as I found out on Sunday ( the day after the social ) it actually makes a pretty huge difference. The deck was sounding great so I was quite sure that if I had a 50% chance of getting it right , then I probably had.

When Roger arrived on Saturday, he brought 2 drive belts to listen to, as he'd been playing around with them and wanted to see what the guys would think. Knowing I hadn't sexed my belt yet, I asked him if he would leave them with me.

It has been quite fascinating, since having heard the magnitude of the Klimax/Akurate Radikal bakeoff, I realised the belt itself was going to be important and I wasn't disappointed, because having a new Linn belt to hand would make a great 3 way bakeoff.

The track used was once again Jeff Beck's Guitar Shop album , Side one , track 3 Behind The Veil................. a superb track suggested by James.
There is an awful lot going on in this recording and it is quite obvious when it steps up a gear. I also had the benefit of Alison's ears too. She has clinically perfect hearing and tells it how it is. No bs.

Playing the track how we had the belt on Saturday first , the consensus was it was superb. Great rendition.
Then swapping the belt upside down , we tried again.
No one said a word until the track ended , but both agreed the whole thing had just gone from great to BLOODY HELL !!!!
Alison noted that there was much more bass and it was easier to follow , whilst drum kit and cymbals had become much cleaner and tighter. Jeff's guitar playing was conveyed with more emotion too, the sense of him digging in his plectrum to shape certain notes. I heard things in there that weren't revealed during the Klimax bakeoff, so I wonder just what that would have sounded like with the belt the right way round. This is called sexing, so when you find the sweet way all you need to do is mark an arrow in biro on Peters mark to denote the correct direction of rotation.
So it is really important to get this right before you do any comparisons because the size of the differences we heard were easily as big as that between the two Radikals. Next time we'll look at two non Linn belts.
1. Origin Live LP12 belt,
2.Thakker LP12 belt. Watch this space.
Linn/Naim Lover

The Flatearther
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Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by The Flatearther » Tue Oct 11, 2016 7:48 pm

Dr_Eddie wrote:As most of you know, the drive belt on the LP12 has 4 possible permutations of being fitted to the deck. Inside out or Upside down both with 2 rotations clockwise or anti clockwise. There is a sonic difference and it is quite repeatable. I had forgotten that during the Kandid fitment Peter noticed my belt had stretched and was floppy. After telling me, I asked him to fit a new one. Peter always marks the outside of the belt, so you don't get it inside out.

But there is still 2 ways on it can go and believe it of not it makes a difference. In fact as I found out on Sunday ( the day after the social ) it actually makes a pretty huge difference. The deck was sounding great so I was quite sure that if I had a 50% chance of getting it right , then I probably had.

When Roger arrived on Saturday, he brought 2 drive belts to listen to, as he'd been playing around with them and wanted to see what the guys would think. Knowing I hadn't sexed my belt yet, I asked him if he would leave them with me.

It has been quite fascinating, since having heard the magnitude of the Klimax/Akurate Radikal bakeoff, I realised the belt itself was going to be important and I wasn't disappointed, because having a new Linn belt to hand would make a great 3 way bakeoff.

The track used was once again Jeff Beck's Guitar Shop album , Side one , track 3 Behind The Veil................. a superb track suggested by James.
There is an awful lot going on in this recording and it is quite obvious when it steps up a gear. I also had the benefit of Alison's ears too. She has clinically perfect hearing and tells it how it is. No bs.

Playing the track how we had the belt on Saturday first , the consensus was it was superb. Great rendition.
Then swapping the belt upside down , we tried again.
No one said a word until the track ended , but both agreed the whole thing had just gone from great to BLOODY HELL !!!!
Alison noted that there was much more bass and it was easier to follow , whilst drum kit and cymbals had become much cleaner and tighter. Jeff's guitar playing was conveyed with more emotion too, the sense of him digging in his plectrum to shape certain notes. I heard things in there that weren't revealed during the Klimax bakeoff, so I wonder just what that would have sounded like with the belt the right way round. This is called sexing, so when you find the sweet way all you need to do is mark an arrow in biro on Peters mark to denote the correct direction of rotation.
So it is really important to get this right before you do any comparisons because the size of the differences we heard were easily as big as that between the two Radikals. Next time we'll look at two non Linn belts.
1. Origin Live LP12 belt,
2.Thakker LP12 belt. Watch this space.
Great post Dr Ed. wish we heard that on Saturday. Very interesting indeed. Thanks again for the social.
.

shellspeed
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Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by shellspeed » Tue Oct 11, 2016 9:48 pm

I can hear outer platters coming off all over the country already. :smt020
Well Keeled :smt020

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Red Chris
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Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by Red Chris » Tue Oct 11, 2016 10:00 pm

Interesting. I suspect though that the gains would be cumulative so that the KRad change would have resulted in an even bigger difference 8)
Currently Cymbiosis LP12 Woodsong Wenge, Klimax Radikal/Chord Sarum T, Keel/A, Khan, Tranquility, Urika/Chord SSA, Aro, sKale, Lyra Kleos SL - Sondek owner since 1982 - the rest is Naim, Chord and Kudos 8)

Jazz Club

Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by Jazz Club » Wed Oct 12, 2016 5:50 am

Eddy,
Good to see you posting again.but this Linn belt stuff has been done to death over the last few years on many fora.
I wouldn't waste your time trying a origin live.
It's been done and proven to be rubbish.
The join is its biggest draw back.
I think James /Mr Onion was the last person on here to try one and send it back for a refund.
I had to look the Thakker up.
Seems William makes belts for lots of different TTs and they are not expensive so look forward to what you think on that?

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Mr Onion
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Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by Mr Onion » Wed Oct 12, 2016 11:15 am

Yes, the OL belt was tried, and returned. The join was (IMHO) the big problem. OL insist that a join of less than 5% of the belts length will make no difference. I disagree as the welding process MUST change the belts structure. Oh, and the OL belt was compared to a 'pre price increase' LINN belt, which is inferior to the current LINN belt.

I have emailed Thacker asking for a review sample. Silence was the reply (which I assume means they do not think the belt will perform well in a comparison)
James
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Fluted Afro LP12, Khan, KEEL, Cirkus, Tranquillity, Urika, Radikal (with Allium Skin Mods), EKOS SE/1, sKale, DVXX-2mkII
Consonance Ref 2.2 Linear (upgraded) with Marigo Lab Aida CD Mat
NACish 72, NAPish 250, Kudos Super 20's

Dr_Eddie
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Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by Dr_Eddie » Wed Oct 12, 2016 5:18 pm

I know the belt stuff has been done to death , but I had forgotten what a new Linn belt sounds like , mine was about 5 years old and was certainly past its best.

The Origin Live belt was as you all expected not really up to my old belt, let alone a new one even running the wrong way.
The sound seemed slugged at both frequency extremes and the music was less rich, seeming as though it had been watered down. All that emotion was lost, along with the dynamics. Definitely not an upgrade here. The join is less noticeable now but it still looks and feels like a piece of lowly specified material, exactly as it sounds in my opinion.

The Thakker belt looked like a very precision made item. The driven side is smooth and shiny, whilst the outer side is matt with the maufacturer name written on it, and the belt was tried initially with the writing Thakker belt drive facing the right way round.

This was very much better than the OL belt within a couple of bars of music playing, and improved even more with the writing upside down, it was actually quite close to the Linn belt, really close, but ultimately there is more music coming from the Linn belt. It would be interesting to see what a Klimax radikal could do with it. Definitely better than a worn Linn belt though. I suspect it would last a long time as it is made from a durable looking piece of rubber.
Linn/Naim Lover

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Mr Onion
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Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by Mr Onion » Wed Oct 12, 2016 6:49 pm

Dr_Eddie wrote:<snip>

The Thakker belt looked like a very precision made item. The driven side is smooth and shiny, whilst the outer side is matt with the maufacturer name written on it, and the belt was tried initially with the writing Thakker belt drive facing the right way round.

This was very much better than the OL belt within a couple of bars of music playing, and improved even more with the writing upside down, it was actually quite close to the Linn belt, really close, but ultimately there is more music coming from the Linn belt. It would be interesting to see what a Klimax radikal could do with it. Definitely better than a worn Linn belt though. I suspect it would last a long time as it is made from a durable looking piece of rubber.
Interesting. Thanks Eddie
James
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Fluted Afro LP12, Khan, KEEL, Cirkus, Tranquillity, Urika, Radikal (with Allium Skin Mods), EKOS SE/1, sKale, DVXX-2mkII
Consonance Ref 2.2 Linear (upgraded) with Marigo Lab Aida CD Mat
NACish 72, NAPish 250, Kudos Super 20's

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Mr Fixit
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Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by Mr Fixit » Thu Oct 13, 2016 12:54 am

These days I just mark up the outside of new belts with an ink spot and then the client once familiar with how his/her LP12 sounds, can then flip the belt to check directionality.

The smoother side runs against the pulley please. Fingers are not so good for checking this (at least mine aren't anymore!) so I just run each side against my bottom lip and the difference is then easy to feel.

KR

Peter
Email: peter@cymbiosis.com
Web: http://www.cymbiosis.com
Skype: peteratcymbiosis

Jazz Club

Re: Belt Bake Off

Post by Jazz Club » Thu Oct 13, 2016 3:19 am

As Chris posted above.
It wont make one jot worth of difference what belt you use with a Radical or Klymax box PSU.
They will both show what ever up for what it is. :roll:
Clean your belts regularly and they will last longer.
A nice new tight belt every couple of months will always make a massive difference if you can afford it?

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