Turntable VTA (Vertical Tracking Angle) is the angle in which the tonearm and stylus meet the record being played. The reason for this angle is two-fold. First, it causes less wear on the stylus by taking off the direct pressure which would occur if the VTA was incorrectly set. More importantly, the record was cut at an angle with the intent of being played back with a stylus set at a certain angle, meaning the stylus can better read and reproduce the sounds as they were originally cut into the vinyl.
Standard VTA for Turntables
You should always check your stylus manufacturer’s specification for this information. At one time, the standard VTA was 15 degrees, but that changed in the 1970s to 20 degrees. With modern turntables, the standard can be around 20 degrees, varying plus or minus 5, which will produce the best quality sound for most records. The steeper angle upgrade provided better contact between the stylus and the LP while putting less strain on the needle tip. Not only did this provide better sound quality, but also meant less maintenance for the turntable and more time enjoying music.
What Changes the VTA from Optimum Setting?
The main cause of an angle change occurs when upgrading the cartridge, as the angle may be different than the stylus that originally came with the turntable. Some turntables have the means to adjust the arm to accommodate different types of cartridges which may have a different VTA or are simply sized differently and therefore meet the record at a different angle than intended. Not all turntables have an adjustable tonearm, including the Fluance RT80 – RT85. This is important to know when considering upgrading your stylus.
RT85 Reference High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable
The Reference turntable delivers a warm, uncompressed listening experience that commands your attention, allowing you to get lost in the music.