My Elemental 
Pro-ject Project

Everyone knows it's Wendy


D Vautier

I got a damaged pro-ject elemental for a fair price, but it turned out to be in worse condition than I expected.  The tone arm was snapped off from the base, all the signal wires were broken, the stylus was bent and there were several cracks in the body.  But I could not let such a nice piece of equipment go to waste so I immediately set to work and fixed it all up.  I wanted to compare it's performance to some of my other turntables and i was surprised.

Most everything about the pro-ject line is well done.  The DC motor is a good distance away from the stylus which totally eliminates EMI as seen below.  Even rumble seemed to be low.  The RCA connection wires are very long and double shielded, which is not so good, way way overkill and can result in signal loss.  The field ground is separate from the signal grounds as I would expect.  Anti-skating is built in.  The stylus weight is 1.5 grams and is adjustable.


The tone arm is very simple and easy to rewire.  You only need to make a spanner wrench to disassemble and replace wires.  It's quite simple to remove the counterweight and end cap. Mark the screw position and back each screw off 2/3 turn or just enough to free the tube from the plinth.  Feed the new wires in then feed them down through the plinth.

I soldered the five wires at the end and shielded them with aluminum tape.

I made a spanner from a flat screwdriver socket.  I simply filed out the middle.


I reinforced the body over the crack with a piece of hardwood Then  I replaced the monster lead out wires with much smaller wires and shortened them to about 2 feet which is plenty long for my pre-amp.  I would never have pre-amp wires longer than 2 feet.

I first ran an analysis of the signal with turntable running and cartridge in the up position.  There was absolutely no noise.  The wave was down 120 dbs.

I played my standard sample music using a xonar sound card and the elemental with the Ortofon 5E and sampled the silence between tracks.

It compares favorably with my other units.  Below is a sample on my Technics running an AT blue on the same passage.