Linn LP12 upgrade priorities

Magic LP12 OakWe’ve had a steady flow of Linn LP12 turntables in for servicing and upgrades this year. One of the most frequent questions is “What upgrade will give me the most benefit?”.

This is a tricky question to answer, as it depends on the age and state of the turntable in question.

If there is an obvious fault, then clearly that points some way in the right direction. Typical faults include:

  • Dead PSU: – There are options from reconditioned ones, 3rd party ones all the way up to a new Radikal Power Supply.
  • Sticky Arm bearings – some arms can be rebuilt with new bearings, however frequently the answer is a new tonearm.
  • Corroded Motor Spindle – New Motor required.
  • Electrical signal fault – if it is in the arm, this can be problematic, however usually it’s simply a new arm cable.
  • Worn out Stylus / Cartridge – replace as appropriate.
  • Broken lid hinges – new lid Hinges are £25 / pair

For otherwise working turntables, but requiring a freshen up and improvement, then typical upgrades  are as follows:

  • For an old turntable (e.g. typically with serial number before 90582) then the Cirkus Bearing or Karousel Bearing Upgrade makes the biggest improvement, if it is not already present and other components (Arm, Cartridge, Motor, PSU etc.) are working OK
  • If the PSU for the Motor is the older Basik style (e.g. for serial numbers before 38800), then a motor and power supply upgrade is a close next highest on the list.
  • Next on the hit list would be the Sub Chassis after the above upgrades (this might be a recommendation with a new bearing anyway).
  • After these three, it’s a case of deciding what is the weak link in the turntable: Cartridge, Arm or Base plate for the best improvement.
  • With these elements in place, we’d be looking at upping the ante for a better version of PSU, sub chassis, Arm or Cartridge

For turntables before serial number ~38800 the plinth was slightly lower – for these turntables upgrading the power supply can be problematical, and may require a new plinth – of course you’re in danger of heading into the territory of Trigger’s Broom with not much of the original turntable left.

We have been servicing and upgrading the Linn LP12 for ~18 years, and have seen most combinations of upgrades and “issues” surrounding them. We’re happy to provide a free inspection and recommendation if you bring your turntable into our showroom.

Linn LP12 Exploded