Connecting a turntable to a digial reciever


Jan 2, 2011
Question: I have a yamaha pf 800 turntable, plugged into a nakamichi re10 receiver. I have connected the tt outputs to a small (cigarette pack) phono preamplifier. Then I run the output jacks to the AUX inputs on my receiver. I cannot get any sound to come from the speakers or even when I use headphones- but I can hear the music playing when I put me head close to the turntable and play an LP. Someone said it could be my Shure m97 needle-cartridge is bad and I need a new one? Can anyone offer any advice? Is it my receiver? Every other piece of audio hooked up to it works fine. Thanks!


Sounds as if you've done the right things -- the acoustic sound from the needle is as expected and suggests the needle (actually called stylus) is tracking the disc okay. There may be a fault in the cartridge or in the connection between it and the amplifier at the headshell end of the arm where the cartridge is mounted or in the turntable wiring.

Personally I would try connecting a simple RCA phono cable to the AUX socket and wetting your finger and touching the centre pin of the RCA phono, trying each channel in turn and varying the volume control. If that produces a hum at the speakers you know the receiver is okay.

Then plug in the preamp to the AUX and repeat the above until you can hear a hum from the each speaker in turn (be careful with the volume control).

Then plug the turnable into the preamp and using a very small screwdriver or similar touch the terminals of the Shure cartridge -- again you should be able to get a hum or crackle from each speaker in turn -- if you do but still no music it suggests the cartridge is not connected properly or is faulty.

Crude, but that's the way I'd troubleshoot the connection.


Dec 16, 2008
Is the preamp designed for your cartridge? Maybe you have a moving magnet cart and it is a moving coil preamp or vice-versa? I would check the specs of both first.


Jun 28, 2010

The Shure should be a moving magnet cart which has a higher output than most moving coil carts. But both MM and MC carts need a preamp. I would guess either the Shure or the phono preamp is bad. Still it is possible that the turntable wiring is bad. I'd start with testing the rig with a different needle/cart.
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