Music Hall MMF-2.2
The MMF-2.2 is Music Hall’s most affordable turntable. Music Hall, whose turntables are manufactured in Pro-Ject’s Czech Republic factory, is only 14 years old but has made quite a name for itself in that short time span.
The MMF-2.2 is the perfect introduction to the wonderful world of analog and in many ways, no CD player can compete with the sound from this turntable! It offers the best you can get on a budget price, being built in such a way as to maximize sound performance. The MMF-2.2 is wonderful to listen to as well as being absolutely gorgeous to look at.
Review of the Music Hall MMF-2.2
The MMF-2.2’s sturdy MDF chassis rests on vibration damping rubber feet that provide a solid, low-resonance foundation. Its heavy steel alloy platter spins on a high-precision stainless steel and bronze bearing assembly for excellent speed stability and smooth, silent rotation. The motor mount and belt drive system effectively isolate the motor’s vibration from the chassis to prevent noise from being transferred to the cartridge. An external AC power supply helps further reduce any traces of interference or hum. Finally, the table’s rigid, one-piece aluminum alloy tonearm provides superb tracking ability to faithfully follow the grooves of your albums, and includes a silicone-damped lift for gently raising and lowering the arm — protecting both the stylus and your records.
The cosmetic changes are the most obvious. The MMF-2.2 boasts a high-gloss piano black lacquer finish (or Ferrari red on the Limited Edition) and what the company calls a “sexy” dust cover. But it also incorporates critical performance enhancing features.
The new height-adjustable vibration dampening foot gives you more control over quashing resonance problems than ever before and come in handy if your supporting surface is less than perfectly level. The substantially improved alloy tonearm offers exceptional rigidity for superior playback; this arm will track anything. It produces absolutely no inner groove distortion. The downward cueing is very nice: not too fast or too slow and no drift side to side. Up cueing could be damped a little bit, it is a bit abrupt. The tonearm can also be adjusted for height. This ability to adjust Vertical Tracking Angle (VTA) on the MMF-2.2 is undoubtedly one of the things that set the Music Hall apart from other turntables in this price range.
The supplied cartridge is nice and neutral. It is neither bright nor dull and has very good bass response. Furthermore, it requires only a short break-in period to come alive.
A minor quibble is that in order to change speeds from 33 to 45, one must remove the platter and slip the belt around the 45 speed capstan from the 33 one.
It is well-known that the more expensive a turntable system is, the more difficult it is to set up. It can be quite intimidating to adjust azimuth, vertical tracking angle or even install a cartridge if you’ve never done so. Unfortunately, most manuals do a poor job explaining the process. The MMF-2.2, however, offers no such challenges or learning curve. Set-up is very easy, and essentially involves removing a pair of motor-transport screws, looping the belt around the pulley and the rim of the sub-platter, setting the platter on the spindle, putting the counterweight on the tonearm, setting cartridge tracking force, slipping the anti-skating weight in place and sliding the dust cover onto its hinges. Voilà! You’re ready to go.
After completing the setup, spinning a record will reveal the accuracy of Music Hall’s “minimalist design” philosophy. This is a no-frills record player, which focuses on producing the most amazing sound possible. The sound of the MMF-2.2 is crisp and clear, enrobed in warmness and smoothness.
Music Hall’s MMF-2.2 turntable is really quiet as well. No noise issues. No rumble, no hum, no clicks. It is very stable and plays at a consistent speed.
The tonal balance is weighted squarely in the midrange, with a bit more upper-midrange and lower high energies to appeal to contemporary tastes for a little extra brilliance. The low end is well balanced with nice enough definition. The MMF-2.2 offers excellent lateral soundstage.
This turntable doesn’t offer the same “air” around instruments or the dimensionality as more expensive models like the Pro-Ject RM-5.1, which retails at around $1,000. What the 2.2 does very well however is deliver the presence and “weight” that a good analog system will and just lets the music sing.
Upgrading the MMF-2.2 with a Grado Gold cartridge and a Speedbox will noticeably improve the sound. However, take into account that the supplied counterweight only supports cartridges up to 5.5g. This means that for cartridges weighing from 6 to 9g (like the AT120E) you’ll need to buy the optional 75g Pro-Ject counterweight. If you’re planning to change the cart, use extreme care when removing the tonearm wires because they are very fragile (use a small pair of needlenose pliers).
Also, the stock mat seems prone to static so we recommend you replace it with a thicker one, like the Pro-Ject Acryl-it platter.
If you want to upgrade step by step, we recommend that you get the Speedbox and new platter first; the improve in sound quality that you will get from this purchases is well worth it.
Either way, at around $400, the MMF-2.2 is a great value out-of-the box and is easily upgradable.
This solidly-built Music Hall MMF-2.2 record player makes an excellent choice for seasoned audiophiles and vinyl newcomers alike who want to get outstanding sound quality without spending a fortune. Music Hall’s minimalist design philosophy focuses on the features that benefit sonic performance — no unnecessary bells and whistles here. With its simple, elegant appearance and high-gloss piano black lacquer finish, this record player will look and sound fantastic atop your audio rack.
If you’re on a budget, have an ever-expanding vinyl collection and are wondering what you might be missing without an audiophile turntable…look no further than the Music Hall MMF-2.2 turntable.
- Gorgeous high gloss piano black lacquer finish
- Special vibration damping feet
- One piece alloy tonearm for superb tracking ability
- Low noise fully manual belt drive design
- High precision stainless steel and bronze bearing assembly
- Bearing provides ultra quiet fluid operation
- Separately isolated asynchronous motor
- Two speed (33/45 rpm) pulley
- Music Hall tracker moving magnet phono cartridge
- User replaceable elliptical stylus
- Cartridge is mounted and properly aligned
- Alloy platter and felt mat
- Excellent instruction manual
- Quick and easy to assemble
- High quality gold rca connectors
- Dust cover and 45rpm adapter
- Power supply: 110V/60Hz
- Power absorption: 2 VA
- Speeds: 33 1/3 rpm, manual commutation to 45 rpm
- Deviation from nominal speed: +/- 0.9%
- Wow and flutter: +/- 0.15%
- Rumble max: -70 dB
- Tracking force: 10-30 mN
- Effective length of tonearm: 9 inches
- Overhang: 0.67 inches
- Platter diameter: 11.81 inches
- Platter weight: 4.5 lbs.
- Dimensions (w x d x h): 16.5 x12.5 x 4.5 inches
- Weight of the unit (incl. packing material): 17 lbs