Philips 312...decent intro turntable?

Discussion in 'Turntables' started by Jupiter1610, Mar 9, 2004.

  1. Jupiter1610

    Jupiter1610 Active Member

    I will be purchasing a Philips 312 turntable w/ AT cartaridge on Thursday, and this will serve as my first introduction to the world of vinyls. It will run $125, and I was wondering if this seems to be a fair rate? Was this a pretty decent turntable in its day? Did it stack up against Thorens models of the same era? Would it be worth putting a decent cartaridge on latter? The turntable will be used will the following-

    Sansui TA-500
    PSB Alpha A/V (hopefully Epos ESL3s soon!)

  2. Don C

    Don C Super Member

    The Phillips is a pretty nice table. I worked on one a while back, and the guts look the same as a Bang & Olufsen. Very simple construction, they use the least material that they can possibly get by with. Just about the opposite of a Dual or a Garrard, I think that those two use as many parts as they possibly can. I wouldn't rate the Phillips quite as high as a Thorens though.
  3. Andyman

    Andyman Scroungus Stereophilus Subscriber

    I used one for a while, but finally decided to keep the Thorens TD-160 I also had. I liked mine and the auto lift at the end of the lp is a nice feature.

    The $125 price seems steep to me though; what all do you get for that? Shipping included? Cartridge? I ask only because it seems to me you could get a Thorens for not much more money, so why not?

    PS. I just went back and checked out Ebay and the highest a 312 went for recently was $50.02, which makes that $125 look like a real premium price.
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2004
  4. mhardy6647

    mhardy6647 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    The Philips GA212 and later 312 were the default entry-level "good" tt's when I started in this hobby (at least in Baltimore). It's a good basic belt-drive tt with suspended platter and tonearm and a lightweight arm well suited to the high-compliance cartridges that were popular in those days. The 212 was (IMO) better built than the 312. They are semi-auto tt's, with optical auto shutoff at the end of the record (IIRC the 312 also lifted the arm at shutoff, but not the 212). Plus, of course, they offer the cool touch controls (as does my somewhat later, but not as nice overall, Philips AF877)

    I agree they're not in the same league as their Thorens contemporaries, but decent and nice looking tt's in their own right. They go for a little too much $ on eBAY for my tastes.
  5. bear-hifi

    bear-hifi Well-Known Member

    I don’t know anything about the Epos but don’t under estimate the PSBs… Place damping sheets on the inter walls of the cabinet and replace the x-over parts with better ones then replace all the wiring with heaver gauge OFC wire. It will sound a LOT better as it already has good drivers. PSB only problem is that there cabinets are not the best and the internal parts (wiring, caps) are on the low end. The drives (Vifa I believe) or very good and the design is good as well.

    Just my 2 cents and it may not be worth that..
  6. Jupiter1610

    Jupiter1610 Active Member

    The turntable included a Audio Technica cartaridge. The piece is in very good condition w/ no scuffs or scratches on the dust cover. I bought the table locally so shipping was simply the cost of gas. I replaced the cartaridge w/ a Grado model that my father gave me, and it sounds absolutely splendid. Do any of you think that the Philips is enough of a table to later put, lets say, a Sumiko Blue Point on?
  7. Don C

    Don C Super Member

    I don't know anything about that cartridge. I do know that the arm on the Phillips is low in mass, and will work best with a high compliance cartridge. Maybe a Shure or one of the higher compliance Ortofons would be my suggestion.
  8. Brian

    Brian An Old Geezer

    The table was an alternative to the AR during that period and better regarded than most of the Japanese tables in the same price range in terms for pulling the music. The tonearm for the original price of the table was inexpensive and excellent whereas the AR arm out of the box needed a real laboe of love. The suspension on the AR was better and the Philips platter rings. That all said side by side on a firm isolated surface the Philips was the better. Not designed to go up against the sterophile tables such as Thorens, Transcriptors, etc. There was a more expensive 427 but these are rare.
  9. Arkay

    Arkay Lunatic Member

    The Philips 312 is a quite decent basic TT, a good choice for someone getting into vinyl-spinning, as it will be fairly easy to service and will sound pretty good.

    Not to nit-pick, but please don't refer to vinyl records as "vinyls". You just come across as a clueless newbie when you say that, as it is a mistake made mostly by kids too young to have been around when records/LPs were mainstream, so they don't know the correct usage. Vinyl is the material that the records are made from, not the individual disc(s). You may refer to "vinyl" as a generic (uncountable) term, as in, "I'm into vinyl," or "vinyl spinning." You may use it as an adjective, as in "vinyl records" or "vinyl pressings". But when referring to the individual black vinyl disks with grooves pressed into them, please say "records", "LPs" or even "discs" --or if you wish to use a slang nickname, "licorice pizza(s)" (once the name of a record store chain) --but never "vinyls". You go to the store an buy a record; you may even buy "some vinyl", but you do NOT buy "a vinyl" or "some vinyls"! :nono:

    (I didn't write that to criticize, but just to help. Please take it that way. :D)
  10. danj

    danj modern primitive

    $125 for a nice 312 with a good cartridge is a fair and honest retail price. It might have been overpriced a few years ago but good quality vintage turntables are becoming less common and prices are going up.

    At least that's the way it is in my area.........

    Enjoy your new-to-you turntable!
  11. catman

    catman Banned

    G'day all, I heard somewhere that turntable teams well with the Shure M97xE cartridge.

    Yes Arkay ok on the term 'vinyls'. Yes I agree. Perhaps I'm showing my age but that term just seems plain wrong to me! 'Records' will do fine with me! Regards, Felix aka catman.
  12. KentTeffeteller

    KentTeffeteller Gimpus Stereophilus!

    The common nickname for the GA 212 and GA 312 was "Poor Man's Thorens". The AR also was as well. The AR overall was a better turntable but the tonearm was better on the Philips. Both when set up right were fine performers. The TD 150 and 160 back then were the best of the middle class turntables. The Transcriptors back then was higher end but had a finicky reputation. The Linn LP-12 was considered the better in high end then or the Sota.
  13. Isotonic

    Isotonic A Delicious Avocado Subscriber

    Though they can be found for less. $130 is a fair price for a working 312 in great condition. I have a 212 that I found for $30, but it was a piece of work. I spent hours removing belt goo and even after a good clean up it was far from pristine.

    I have a Shure V-15 II on mine with a Jico HE stylus on it. It sounds very very good. My Grado Sonata probably sounded better on it, but I ultimately felt I was wasting my Grado. Which sounds much better on a better, much more expensive TT/Arm.

    That said, my Phillips is still an excellent TT. I use it all the time and never feel dissatisfied. I can say for reference that I like it more than my Dual 1218 and Pioneer PL-518, two other solid tables that are well regarded.
  14. Luke57

    Luke57 New Member

    Need a cartridge and stylus for my Phillips 312 TT.
    Anyone care to offer up a few recommendations?
    Thank you.

    Also, what it is the difference between at GA-212 and GA-312? I sit only that the tone arm lifts at end of record?
    Thank you
  15. allan1832

    allan1832 AK Subscriber Subscriber

    I don't know if this will help, but I have a Grado Red on my GA-212 and it seems to work well. It sounds great anyway. The person who had the table for most of its life had an older Grado on it and he seemed to know what he was doing, so I just stuck with Grado. I've never seen a 312 so I'm not real clear on the differences.

  16. pbda

    pbda AK Subscriber Subscriber

    My sentiments exactly. Bought a GA-212 in 1976 and it's spinning happily today.
  17. pbda

    pbda AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Amen, brother. :yes:
  18. davidro

    davidro Lunatic Member

    Heck I'm running an M97xE on a 202, not even 212 or 312 :D
  19. flavio81

    flavio81 Turntable technician

    Philips GA312? Of course, that's a good entry level turntable!! Philips in the 60s and 70s had a R&D department second to none.

    Who knows, maybe with some mods (damping the plinth with filler, wrapping the tonearm with damping material) it can be surprising.
  20. icenine

    icenine Super Member

    What are you the syntax police Arkay? Any other nouns you do not want anyone else to use? The op is about a turntable.

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