My buddy recently had a little mishap with his beautiful Yamaha GT-2000 direct drive turntable. Naturally, I helped him sort it out and of course we had a good listen to her over a couple of beverages whilst dialling in the cartridge alignment and ride height.
The mishap occurred when my mate was cleaning his beloved GT-2000. While using a cleaning cloth near the headshell, he must have brought the cloth too near to the stylus and just caught it, moving the cloth and causing the whole cantilever and stylus to snap clean off his Denon DL-103R moving coil cartridge! This is one of those moments where you feel sick when you realise what you’ve done, and I know he did. Still, it raises a really important point of order – NEVER USE A CLOTH near your deck unless the stylus guard is fitted, or better still, the headshell has been removed!
Anyway, once the dust had settled and I had convinced my buddy to get back on the horse, a new DL-103R was ordered and I performed a basic setup at my place by installing the Denon into the Ortofon LH-9000 headshell, performing some listening tests of the DL-103R at my place before heading over to the home of the Yamaha GT-2000 and doing the final setup there. I took a couple of photos as we dialed in the downforce and ride height. Note the very nice Ortofon LH-9000 headshell.
The Yahama GT-2000 is a legendary direct-drive deck from Japan. It sold especially well in its home country, but not that well outside of it. These days, people import them from Japan and often have to use a step down transformer to allow local operation. Anyway, the Yamaha GT-2000 is a heavy-hitting monster deck.
GT stood for ‘Gigantic and Tremendous’ – I kid you not. This was the kind of thing the Japanese loved in the late 70’s and early 80’s. I really like the deck – the platter really is ah… gigantic – and I guess tremendous as well… The chassis is heavy and finished in a very nice black ash. Quite honestly, the deck is gigantic, taking up more physical space than even my Kenwood L-07D, though the Kenwood is still heavier 🙂
The tonearm for me is the weakest link here. The arm is light-weight and lets the deck down in my opinion. Ride height is adjustable as I mentioned, but there is no vernier adjustment via lovely machined threaded adjustment like say on the L-07D. With the GT-2000, the arm slides up and down a metal post, held in place by a grub-screw. Having said that, the arm is a long one, at least 10 inches, reducing tracking distortion when an installed cartridge is correctly aligned.
The motor is also a true beast, a really nice die-cast monster, bolted into the chassis with Allen bolts and beautifully finished. The platter spins up reasonable quickly and once there, speed is locked with a quartz servo. I haven’t pulled her apart yet so I am not able to comment further on the circuitry used or the internal construction, but a more detailed look will happen at some point in the future.
All-up, I would certainly recommend a GT-2000, for the right price. You can read more about them here, from the legendary Vintage Knob!