One of my wonderful repeat customers recently purchased a Rega P5 and asked me if I could have a careful look at it for him, servicing anything that needed attention.
My customer delivered the deck a couple of days ago and I am pleased to have now finished the service and inspection. The deck is in very good condition, with no major issues anywhere. Cosmetically, everything is in very good order and unusually the deck was also set up quite well too.
I started with my usual clean and visual inspection, then added some synthetic bearing oil to the Rega’s spindle bearing and cleaned the drive belt. I cleaned the stylus and then photographed it at high magnification using my digital stylus imaging equipment. This allows me to properly inspect the stylus for wear, something you can only do under high magnification. The bonus for my customer was that this deck came with an Ortofon 2M Black cartridge. These retail for around $800 and this one is perfect, with no visible stylus wear.
The cartridge was only slightly misaligned, so I corrected this and set up the stylus pressure with my digital stylus pressure gauge. The last things I did were to tighten the arm mounting to the chassis and tighten the motor mounting and main bearing housing. These are often quite loose on Rega decks, which will not help with reproduction lower frequencies.
All told, this is a nice, clean example of a Rega P5. I am not a huge fan of Rega decks, but as far as Rega’s go, this is a nice one and the tonearm and cartridge combination mean this one will punch above it’s weight.