Pioneer PL-41

Pioneer PL-41 Dustcover

 

This is one of Pioneer's better contributions to the turntable market. Built in the late 60' and early 70's it's the Pioneer PL-41. At the time it was their top of the line turntable. The Pl-61 and PL-71 were better but came out a few years later and were direct drive as opposed to the PL-41's belt drive.

 

Pioneer PL-41 Platter

 

The PL-41 is built like a tank and, when set up properly, is a solid performer. Some stats:

Speeds: 33 and 45rpm
Wow and flutter: 0.08%
Rumble: 50dB
Platter: 310mm, 2.2kg, aluminium alloy diecast
Tonearm: static balance type
Cartridge: PL-C9 moving magnet
Stylus: PL-N9 0.65 mil radius diamond
Frequency response: 15 to 21,000Hz
Channel separation: more than 30dB
Output: 5mV
Stylus pressure: 2 to 3g
Dimensions: 508 x 406 x 191mm
Weight: 10.5kg

 

Pioneer PL-41 Tonearm

 

The PL-41 uses an SME style headshell and a number of cartridges will work well with it including the Audio Technica AT120 and AT95E as well as the Stanton 680EE. For more advanced users the Denon DL-110 and DL-160 are good choices. A vintage Shure M91ED and a new stylus will work well also.

 

Pioneer PL-41 Headshell

 

There are a couple common problems with the PL-41. First, the cueing mechanism can run dry causing the tonearm to drop quickly. Adding the correct can fix this. For a good reference on how to do it check out THIS thread. Another problem are the thrust plates which are located in the bottom portion of the bearing well. They have a tendency to crack or disintegrate over time causing the platter to sit incorrectly in the platter well. They are easy to replace, but it is difficult to find originals. Some have tried to fabricate them out of small pieces of plastic or plastic bottle caps. A long thread on this subject can be found HERE.

 

Pioneer PL-41 Speed

 

The Pioneer PL-41 really is a quality turntable. It's big, it's heavy and it's built well. With the right maintenance and cartridge it can be a very good performer. You can find one in good working condition for anywhere from $150 to $300.

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Pioneer PL-115D

Pioneer PL-115D Dustcover

 

The Pioneer PL-115D  is a semi automatic,  2 speed, belt drive turntable.  It has an elegant look with the walnut grain base and charcoal top. It utilizes a speed detecting auto-return mechanism that will smoothly return the arm to rest even with a warped record. It was made in Japan and hit the market around 1976.

 

Pioneer PL-115D Platter

 

The arm is a static balanced S shaped pipe arm and does have an anti-skating device. Cartridge weight can be between 4g and 10g.

 

Pioneer PL-115D Tonearm

 

The PL-115D operates at both 33 1/3 and 45 speeds. the platter is aluminum alloy die cast. The belt drive uses a 4 pole synchronous motor with wow and flutter at 0.07%.

 

Pioneer PL-115D Speed

 

It uses a light plug in type aluminum headshell. It does not have VTA adjustment.

 

Pioneer PL-115D Headshell

 

Pioneer sold many, many PL-115D turntables so they are not rare. But, demand is high. Since so many were made parts are easily attainable which makes it a good entry level turntable. With a little modification it can be a really good turntable. Fully restored they sell for over $300. an average unit sells for about $150.

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