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Robert H

Design differences in Rega Planar 2s over the years?

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Hi guys. I'm still searching for my first turntable but am having a lot of success finding used P2/P3s, which is encouraging.

I'm trying to work out the changes to the P2s over the years, if anyone can help me as I've spotted at least three differences from old to new.

First thing I notice is some models have a green logo, whilst others are a white/gray colour. I'm not going to assume all they did is change the logo colour and am wondering if there are any other non visible differences between the two - for good or bad. Another difference is the newer fat looking platter on the new models which have the newer RB251. Rega argue that this new platter offers better stability and speed, but who really knows.

The specific turntable I am currently looking at has a green logo, RB250 tonearm and a glass platter. Hopefully it's no worse than earlier/later P2s, but if anyone knows anything I'd love to read it.

Cheers.

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Can't say i've compared any P2 models, but did own a Planar 2 with green logo and glass platter.

If it were me i'd go for the glass platter. I really can't see Rega puting the MDF platter on newer models because of sonic benefits when they still run glass on the P3-24 and P5. IMO the MDF platter would have to be nothing more than a cost saving for them.

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I too can't compare different Planer 2 models but i've owned mine since 1999 with the green logo and glass platter and i've been really pleased with it over the years. As my musical tastes have broadened and i now listen to other genres of music rather than just rock or pop i've noticed the defect of the speed instability from the rather basic motor and housing. Sustained piano and acoustic guitar notes show it up but apart from that it's been great and it's only now after 11 years that i'm about to replace it.

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Thanks for the replies guys. I'm now guessing those with the green logo are a more recent make than those that have a white logo.

I also agree with the comments that the glass platter is probably better than the mdf one used on the current make, why else would they be using glass platters on the P5 and P3-24?

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I cannot tell you dates and changes, however I can offer a few guidelines -

1/ - the original was called a Planar 2, the name was later changed to P2

2/ - the first arm used was an S shaped one, then for many years the RB250 with pillar mount and recently the RB251 using a 3 point mount.

3/ - white logo P2 is probably more recent than green logo, my deck is less than 10 years old and has a white logo.

4/ - a glass platter was used on earlier models and then changed to MDF (presumably to reduce costs and provide more incentive to buy the P3)

5/ - at some time during the last 10 years (probably less) the motor and its mounting were changed, earlier models had the motor mounted by "O" rings, the latest motor is mounted with a double sided adhesive pad to the underside of the plinth - this is the same motor offered as an upgrade kit/spare. (not to be confused with the more upmarket 3-24 motor and PSU)

6/ - as mentioned previously the P3 offered a thicker plinth and for most of its life the RB300 arm instead of the RB250 - the RB300 offers a better end-stub and counterweight arrangement and VTF adjustment by spring-loaded dial rather than by counterweight movement. The RB250 is generally considered the better base for modification as many find the VTF spring on the RB300 to be subject to ringing.

7/ - the P3 was known as the Planar 3 originally and the latest models are also offered in various colours in addition to black.

8/ - the P25 was a special limited production model.

9/ - very early model Planars may also have a timber trim surrounding the plinth.

Hope some of these details will help.

Have fun.

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Hope some of these details will help.

Most helpful indeed. Do you know all that off the top of your head? If so I'm impressed.

When you say the motor has been upgraded in the past ten years, is that when they completely changed the platter?

If the one I just bought has a green logo, black finish, RB250 and glass plinth it must be the second release type, with one before it and two newer makes. Would that be right?

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They are details I have picked up in my journey to and with my P2, which is why I do not recall dates for the changes.

Whether the motor change & platter change were coincident or at differing times I cannot say.

My P2, IIRC, is around 7 - 8 years old and has the current adhesive pad mounted motor (or did until I fitted an SRM Tech Silent Base) and was originally supplied with an MDF platter.

I purchased it second hand a few years back and the original owner had changed the platter to a glass one and upgraded the counterweight and stub.

Most probably you are correct on the model you have bought, check the motor mount when you receive it, that will tell you more.

Since it is fairly trivial to change the platter or the arm, many owners may have done either at one time or another and the whole deck may no longer be "as delivered new".

This is not necessarily a bad thing, with what you have bought being as good a spec as you might hope for and better than many at < $400.

Check that the platter turns freely and the arm also turns nicely in its bearings, fit cartridge and enjoy music.

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The original Planar 2 had the Rega RB200 arm fitted, a float glass platter that was slightly thinner than the glass on the Planar 3, the Planar 2 also had a wooden surround trim around the edge of the plinth, which IMO was fairly ugly.

Ken

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The original Planar 2 had the Rega RB200 arm fitted, a float glass platter that was slightly thinner than the glass on the Planar 3, the Planar 2 also had a wooden surround trim around the edge of the plinth, which IMO was fairly ugly.

Ken

Regarding the thickness of the platter, my Planar 2 from the end of the 90s has the plinth of the second generation and the RB250 arm and the motor supported by the rubber band. At the time i bought it the Planar 3 had the thicker glass platter which leads me to think that until they went with the mdf platter the glass on the 2 was always thinner than on the 3. The motor upgrade came out when mine was a couple of years old so i reckon Ophool's above must have been one of the early ones with the upgraded motor.

Didn't at one time the Planar 2 come with a Grace arm back in the early days? I'm sure i've seen a few for sale with such but perhaps that was a personal thing rather than a factory option. Maybe once upon a time they came without an arm?

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The original Planar 2 had the Rega RB200 arm fitted, a float glass platter that was slightly thinner than the glass on the Planar 3, the Planar 2 also had a wooden surround trim around the edge of the plinth, which IMO was fairly ugly.

Ken

Hey, I like my wooden trim! At least I now know my P2 is a Planar 2 and is the original model. It's older than I thought.

Geoff

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Hey, I like my wooden trim! At least I now know my P2 is a Planar 2 and is the original model. It's older than I thought.

Geoff

Geoff, Each to their own!

The Planar 2 that I had was 1978.

Ken

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Actually my fav of the bunch is the older/original Rega P2's which had the Grace 707 arm from before Rega was making their own arms to lower/keep costs down. Certainly worth a look at if you see any of those about as well, a lovely neutral arm alot report

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Oh wow ok let me see if this summary is correct.

First Planar 2s with Grace 707 arm, followed by Planar 2 with RB200, then the Planar 2 with green logo and RB250, followed by the P2 with a white logo, lastly and most recently the P2 with RB251 and mdf platter and upgraded motor.

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As the Planar 2 and 3 have such a long line with a lot of respect i'm surprised that Rega don't have a historical section on their website.

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Didn't at one time the Planar 2 come with a Grace arm back in the early days? I'm sure i've seen a few for sale with such but perhaps that was a personal thing rather than a factory option. Maybe once upon a time they came without an arm?

They certainly did, the Grace 707 MKII and from what I read was and still is a very favoured tonearm and much sought after these days. Has been used on many good turntables in days passed but it wasn't a factory option/upgrade. Back then Rega didn't make tonearms I think, from what litle I have read I think Rega started making their own tone arms to help keep costs down but still be able to offer a good product.

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Oh wow ok let me see if this summary is correct.

First Planar 2s with Grace 707 arm, followed by Planar 2 with RB200, then the Planar 2 with green logo and RB250, followed by the P2 with a white logo, lastly and most recently the P2 with RB251 and mdf platter and upgraded motor.

Sounds about right, I was lucky when I was shopping as I came across a P2 with the Grace arm quite by accident on eBay. But mine still has the original belt suspended motor, I plan on upgrading this to a Orogin Live DC kit and then changing the platter for a nice acyrillic one, put a better sub platter on it, make a custom hardwood plinth and maybe a nice ruby bearing. Though I guess by then it's not going to be a Rega much anymore hehehe

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They certainly did, the Grace 707 MKII and from what I read was and still is a very favoured tonearm and much sought after these days. Has been used on many good turntables in days passed but it wasn't a factory option/upgrade. Back then Rega didn't make tonearms I think, from what litle I have read I think Rega started making their own tone arms to help keep costs down but still be able to offer a good product.

First Rega was actually the Rega Planet.

I think the Planar 2 was next with the RB200, which was a Rega Spec'd version of the Acos Lustre Arm of the mid 70's.

As said elsewhere the Grace 707 was a very fine arm, but it was never a Rega Factory Option, I think from memory I would be correct in saying that the Rega Planar 2 & Planar 3 could be fitted with a Grace 707 as a dealer option only in Australia.

Ken

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My Rega Planar 2 came stock with the Grace 707, but I must admit I don't really know anything else about the history/evolution of Rega gear other than just what I've heard here or there most of which may well not be fact so I could well be wrong in most of what I said to be honest lol.

Edited by Mitcon

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My Rega Planar 2 came stock with the Grace 707, but I must admit I don't really know anything else about the history/evolution of Rega gear other than just what I've heard here or there most of which may well not be fact so I could well be wrong in most of what I said to be honest lol.

Hi Mitcon,

If you purchased your Planar 2 new with a Grace 707 fitted, it would have been the Australian Importer of the day that specified the 707.

I worked in the UK in a slightly related industry and I know that early Rega's only had the RB200 fitted, but you could buy Rega's without an arm, I did so.

As Rega distibuted their own products in UK they controlled all, however, in Australia I think they shared a distribution network with Linn.

It was Linn that brought the Grace 707 to UK and I beleive Ivor became the distributor for Grace and Supex outside of Japan.

As Roy and Ivor were freinds I think Linn, Rega, Grace and Supex all shared joint distribution, that is why there are so many combinations of the 4 makes.

Ken

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I didn't buy my Rega new, in-fact I only bought it last year but it was the original owner that said thats how he bought it. I really don't know very much at all about Regas myself to be honest and even less about turntables. I'm really quite a newbie to it all, I had a few turntables when I was young but I've no idea what they were, just whatever was cheap back then I would think. I still haven't even used the P2 I bought much, all I have done so far is play a couple of albums and rewire the tone arm and put a new Ortofon 2M red on it.

It was a nice looking table though, even the plastic lid and hinges still look like new.

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Hi,

I've got an early-ish RB250 model Planar 2 - silver end weight (they went to black, then back to silver later on), but with a plinth finish I've never seen- it's like brushed dark metal.  The Rega logo is silver on the plinth, although it's green on the arm.  It was bought second hand in around 1990.  It also has the glass platter and a smoked plastic lid.

I've never seen a pedestal quite like this one, can anyone shed any light on it?

 

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