Degritter ultrasonic record cleaner

Hi y’all, just a few words on what I think is a worthy alternative to the Audio Desk Systeme and KLAudio ultrasonic cleaners.

http://degritter.com/media-kit/

I’ve been a beta tester on the Degritter for the last few weeks, and am happy to offer my opinions and answer any qs for those interested.

I believe official launch is in early May, and at this stage after a couple of quibbles in day to day use, I’m planning to keep my unit, it’s been a pretty good success, and invaluable addition to day to day life as a vinyl addict.
 
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PeterA

Well-Known Member
Dec 7, 2011
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North Shore of Boston
Based on the current description of the Degritter, I'll speculate two possible items: a) the effectiveness of its transducers operating at 120kHz and b) how slow is the process of cleaning only one record at a time.

Questions I would have: does it heat its solution? Is there straightforward access to clean the cleaning tank? What are the ingredients of its solution?
I am also curious about the noise level. My KLAudio USC is pretty loud, so I have the "Silencer" enclosure which allows me to place it next to my desk so that I can clean one LP at a time while writing this or doing work. Without the sound proofing enclosure, I would have to place the machine in an adjacent room which would be much less convenient, and convenience is one of the main reasons for the current popularity of ultra sonic machines.
 

dminches

Active Member
Oct 22, 2011
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I am also curious about the noise level. My KLAudio USC is pretty loud, so I have the "Silencer" enclosure which allows me to place it next to my desk so that I can clean one LP at a time while writing this or doing work. Without the sound proofing enclosure, I would have to place the machine in an adjacent room which would be much less convenient, and convenience is one of the main reasons for the current popularity of ultra sonic machines.
Peter, how loud, or quiet, is the machine while it is in the silencer? It sounds like you can sit right next to it and not be disturbed by it?
 

spiritofmusic

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Jun 13, 2013
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Well Peter, the Degritter can't be used while a record is playing. Unless of course, you're heavily into Death Metal LOL.

But it's sufficiently quiet to have to put up with if you're cleaning a few lps at a time. The cleaning phase indeed is pretty quiet, drying phase as loud as a powerful hairdryer.

That's as good as you're going to get w this kind of machine.
 
Feb 21, 2014
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I am also curious about the noise level. My KLAudio USC is pretty loud, so I have the "Silencer" enclosure which allows me to place it next to my desk so that I can clean one LP at a time while writing this or doing work. Without the sound proofing enclosure, I would have to place the machine in an adjacent room which would be much less convenient, and convenience is one of the main reasons for the current popularity of ultra sonic machines.
Hi Peter

This YouTube video will give you an idea of the noise levels he uses a dB meter at around 7:50

 
Likes: NorthStar
Jan 27, 2019
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With later versions of the Degritter (Beta2 and presumably in the final version when you get it) you can dial down the speed of the dryer and have it relatively quiet, though you may need to run it for longer - the only risk is that the record might not be not 100% dry when the cycle is complete in which case you just select Dry as an option and run it for another minute or two. Generally speaking I prefer longer/quieter to louder/quicker.

The Degritter effectively replaces a Loricraft PRC6 which is whisper-quiet, which in turn replaced an old Moth that made so much din I hardly ever used it.
 

PeterA

Well-Known Member
Dec 7, 2011
5,229
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63
North Shore of Boston
Peter, how loud, or quiet, is the machine while it is in the silencer? It sounds like you can sit right next to it and not be disturbed by it?
That is correct. It is very quiet and I sit right next to it when I work. I would not, however, place it in my listening room because I can hear it just slightly.
 

PeterA

Well-Known Member
Dec 7, 2011
5,229
192
63
North Shore of Boston
Well Peter, the Degritter can't be used while a record is playing. Unless of course, you're heavily into Death Metal LOL.

But it's sufficiently quiet to have to put up with if you're cleaning a few lps at a time. The cleaning phase indeed is pretty quiet, drying phase as loud as a powerful hairdryer.

That's as good as you're going to get w this kind of machine.
Marc, have you compared the loudness levels of the KLAudio, the AudioDesk, and the Degritter? Without the silencer on my machine, I doubt I would want to be anywhere near it for more than a minute. With the silencer, I can work next to it for hours. I simply put it one LP after another and go about my business. Are you saying that the Degritter is like that?
 

redcars

New Member
Jan 7, 2015
2
3
3
Hi guys,
I am writing to add my input on record cleaning, having had many years of experience.
I am using both an ultrasonic cleaner and a Loricraft record washer in what I believe is a very effective manner.
The methods are different, but the results are similar to what Peter has described:
“I have both a Loricraft PRC 4 Delux and a KLAudio. I will not be selling the Lori. I find that I need both for best results. The Lori with 4-step AIVS fluids gets mold release compound out and I like the super pure water rinse. So right now I am first using 2 X 5min clean and one 4 min dry on the KLAudio and if I care and want to spend the time for even better results, I use the Loricraft with 4-step solutions and double pure water rinse. Super quiet vinyl surfaces and I can hear deep into the music for very subtle details and hall ambiance if it is on the recording. The double cleaning removes a slight greyish veil even on new LPs, and is wonders for used, second hand LPs. The ultrasonic cleaner might be slightly better at removing hard crud/grit that causes clicks and pops as long as it is not actual groove damage, but the Loricraft also brings something to the results. The bottom line is that the surface noise is reduced and the backgrounds are blacker allowing one to hear more of what is on the LP. YMMV.”

I had a VPI 17F for years but never really liked it. I spent too much time cleaning the brushes to keep them from transferring from one record to the next. The Loricraft was a big step forward. My records sounded cleaner/better and no residue transfer.
I bought an Elmasonic P60H and really got clean! But I kept using the Loricraft after the ultrasonic because I liked the improvement from L’Art du Son cleaning fluid.
The L’Art instructions are to mix the bottle with one gallon of distilled water. I mix it with FIVE GALLONS of distilled water. With any stronger mix I can hear that the sound is veiled. With my dilution, the benefits of using L’Art du Son as a final cleaner and surface treatment are optimized. Music comes alive with this additional step. Records have increased soundstage depth and sense of musical ease.
I clean three records at a time in the ultrasonic. A mixture of distilled water and alcohol (actually, Everclear – grain alcohol). The alcohol can give records a slightly thinner/brighter/dryer sound, but I don’t care because I’m going to L’Art them afterwards. 30 minutes revolving in the ultrasonic is good for most records that are new, or near mint, or cleaned before.
After the ultrasonic, I wipe the records down with a quilted microfiber cloth.
Then I do the Loricraft while the next batch of 3 records cooks in the ultrasonic. It usually takes about two hours to do 6 records. If I do this for two hours a day for 3 years, I’ll be close to being finished with my current collection. Glad I’m retired!
Some words about my DIY Ultrasonic. I got many of my ideas from this thread: https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/analogue-source/218276-version-ultrasonic-record-cleaner.html
My ultrasonic cleaner is an Elmasonic P60H with both 37 and 80kHz options. I normally use 80kHz. Three records rotate at 6 RPH (3 revolutions in 30 minutes). I warm up the fluid to about 35 degrees C with the built-in heater. After 30 minutes of running, but without the heater, the temperature is up to about 45 degrees C. I then cool the fluid back to 35 degrees with a circulating pump and radiator (from a water-cooled computer). The fluid passes thru the same 1 micron filter that was described earlier by tima.
[See photos in attached file.]
I hope that this is helpful to some of you.
Don
 

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spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
6,954
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E. England
Peter, the cleaning cycle is totally manageable re noise, the drying cycle somewhat louder, rather like a hairdryer. Too loud for doing while listening, but totally bearable when having to clean multiple lps.

No experience of ADS or KLA.
 

COF

Member
Sep 30, 2017
46
9
8
Don

Thanks for all that info.

Though I think avoiding that level of involvement and work is why many of us are attracted to the Degritter in the first place. If it were strictly about what gets a record as clean as humanly possible, I can certainly see where multiple machines and cleaning figure in to that. But the Degritter is mostly about simplifying the washing of records (with as high performance as possible within that goal). If I had to use an additional machine, for me it would defeat the purpose of the Degritter.
 

PeterA

Well-Known Member
Dec 7, 2011
5,229
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North Shore of Boston
No experience of ADS or KLA.
That's as good as you're going to get w this kind of machine.
Marc, in reference to sound levels with these machines, you wrote the above two comments. I don't understand how you can say the Degritter is as good as your going to get and then also say that you have no experience with the other machines. On what then do you base your comment about the noise level? Or are you saying the ADS and KLA are not "this kind of machine" and somehow very different from the other two?
 

spiritofmusic

Well-Known Member
Jun 13, 2013
6,954
305
83
E. England
Sorry Peter, poor use of English. I think I meant to say that machine noise as tolerable as a hairdryer meant that it was reasonable for continuous use cleaning several lps at a time. Cannot comment on any comparison.
 

COF

Member
Sep 30, 2017
46
9
8
Marc, in reference to sound levels with these machines, you wrote the above two comments. I don't understand how you can say the Degritter is as good as your going to get and then also say that you have no experience with the other machines. On what then do you base your comment about the noise level? Or are you saying the ADS and KLA are not "this kind of machine" and somehow very different from the other two?
I'm also in no position to say.

That said, having watched numerous demonstrations of US machines in videos, they all sound louder than the sound in the Degritter video review.
Some of them screetch horribly.
 

dminches

Active Member
Oct 22, 2011
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Unless something was putting out a totally ridiculous amount of noise I would not pick a cleaner based on the sound it makes. Maybe I am fortunate to be able to run the machine in a room that no one else, including me, needs to occupy.
 
Likes: tima

COF

Member
Sep 30, 2017
46
9
8
Unless something was putting out a totally ridiculous amount of noise I would not pick a cleaner based on the sound it makes. Maybe I am fortunate to be able to run the machine in a room that no one else, including me, needs to occupy.
My listening room is on our first floor, so wherever I put a record cleaner, it has to be 1. A handy distance and 2. won't annoy the rest of the house when in use.

A relatively quiet machine like the Degritter, especially given its offers a dry mode far quieter than any other USRC, gives me more options for placement, than if I had to choose a room based on the fact it was super loud.
 

tima

Industry Expert
Mar 4, 2014
472
125
43
The higher the ultrasonic frequency the less annoying it is - up to a point. In the single-slot vertical machines it's usually the fan that is most bothersome. FWIW, the KLAudio without its silencer box is a bit louder than the ADS. If you think you can listen to records while cleaning records in the same room with any of machines mentioned here, you may be disappointed. This discussion reminds me of those wondering where to put the big dot-matrix printer.
 
Likes: dminches

tima

Industry Expert
Mar 4, 2014
472
125
43
Hi guys,
I am writing to add my input on record cleaning, having had many years of experience.
I am using both an ultrasonic cleaner and a Loricraft record washer in what I believe is a very effective manner.
The methods are different, but the results are similar to what Peter has described:
“I have both a Loricraft PRC 4 Delux and a KLAudio. I will not be selling the Lori. I find that I need both for best results. The Lori with 4-step AIVS fluids gets mold release compound out and I like the super pure water rinse. So right now I am first using 2 X 5min clean and one 4 min dry on the KLAudio and if I care and want to spend the time for even better results, I use the Loricraft with 4-step solutions and double pure water rinse. Super quiet vinyl surfaces and I can hear deep into the music for very subtle details and hall ambiance if it is on the recording. The double cleaning removes a slight greyish veil even on new LPs, and is wonders for used, second hand LPs. The ultrasonic cleaner might be slightly better at removing hard crud/grit that causes clicks and pops as long as it is not actual groove damage, but the Loricraft also brings something to the results. The bottom line is that the surface noise is reduced and the backgrounds are blacker allowing one to hear more of what is on the LP. YMMV.”

I had a VPI 17F for years but never really liked it. I spent too much time cleaning the brushes to keep them from transferring from one record to the next. The Loricraft was a big step forward. My records sounded cleaner/better and no residue transfer.
I bought an Elmasonic P60H and really got clean! But I kept using the Loricraft after the ultrasonic because I liked the improvement from L’Art du Son cleaning fluid.
The L’Art instructions are to mix the bottle with one gallon of distilled water. I mix it with FIVE GALLONS of distilled water. With any stronger mix I can hear that the sound is veiled. With my dilution, the benefits of using L’Art du Son as a final cleaner and surface treatment are optimized. Music comes alive with this additional step. Records have increased soundstage depth and sense of musical ease.
I clean three records at a time in the ultrasonic. A mixture of distilled water and alcohol (actually, Everclear – grain alcohol). The alcohol can give records a slightly thinner/brighter/dryer sound, but I don’t care because I’m going to L’Art them afterwards. 30 minutes revolving in the ultrasonic is good for most records that are new, or near mint, or cleaned before.
After the ultrasonic, I wipe the records down with a quilted microfiber cloth.
Then I do the Loricraft while the next batch of 3 records cooks in the ultrasonic. It usually takes about two hours to do 6 records. If I do this for two hours a day for 3 years, I’ll be close to being finished with my current collection. Glad I’m retired!
Some words about my DIY Ultrasonic. I got many of my ideas from this thread: https://www.diyaudio.com/forums/analogue-source/218276-version-ultrasonic-record-cleaner.html
My ultrasonic cleaner is an Elmasonic P60H with both 37 and 80kHz options. I normally use 80kHz. Three records rotate at 6 RPH (3 revolutions in 30 minutes). I warm up the fluid to about 35 degrees C with the built-in heater. After 30 minutes of running, but without the heater, the temperature is up to about 45 degrees C. I then cool the fluid back to 35 degrees with a circulating pump and radiator (from a water-cooled computer). The fluid passes thru the same 1 micron filter that was described earlier by tima.
[See photos in attached file.]
I hope that this is helpful to some of you.
Don
I set my Elma's thermostat to 30° C. By ~20 minutes of cavitation, temperature has risen to ~ 33-34°. That drops back pretty quick while switching to another spindle's worth of records - so no cooling needed, though its a clever idea. Fwiw, now I'm using a 0.35 micron filter - cheap to switch.Thanks for your write-up, Don. I actually think your commentary should have its own thread. This theads wants to share info and excitement about the degritter, but hey, cats.
 

PeterA

Well-Known Member
Dec 7, 2011
5,229
192
63
North Shore of Boston
Unless something was putting out a totally ridiculous amount of noise I would not pick a cleaner based on the sound it makes. Maybe I am fortunate to be able to run the machine in a room that no one else, including me, needs to occupy.
Well, I'm sure I could find a closet somewhere in which I could place a noisy RCM but the hassle of coming and going each time I want to retrieve the LP or adjust something would be quite inconvenient. I prefer being able to run the machine near me while I multi task. I agree that cleaning ability trumps noise level.

I wonder if anyone has tried to make his own sound proofing chamber for one of these machines, something like the KLA Silencer but cheaper.
 

dminches

Active Member
Oct 22, 2011
758
43
28
I wonder if anyone has tried to make his own sound proofing chamber for one of these machines, something like the KLA Silencer but cheaper.
I was wondering how noisy it would be if I had a lucite cover made for the KLA. I am not sure if that would be any better.
 

COF

Member
Sep 30, 2017
46
9
8
Something I don't think I've seen discussed is that Degritter bills itself as the first "smart Record Cleaner." They have put some emphasis on the software built in to their cleaner. E.g.:

Degritter is capable of recovering and warning users in the following situations:


  • sensor malfunction
  • water temperature too high
  • water in the cleaning tank due to switch off during wash
  • external water tank missing
  • insufficient water
  • pump failures

http://degritter.com/

There's also the in-field-use upgradability via software updates.

Do any other USRCs offer similar features?
 

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