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.
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%
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
Stylus pressure: 2 to 3g
Dimensions: 508 x 406 x 191mm
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.
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.
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.