Since my review of the Pro-Ject VC-S2 Alu, some readers have reported an issue with its smaller counterpart, the VC-E. The issue concerns the tank exhaust vent, which due to the small size of the machine is below the overhanging record and when a record is in situ. As the machine warms up with use, the hot air exhausting from the vent can cause condensation to form on the underside of the record.
Following this I spoke to Henley Audio, Pro-Ject’s UK distributor. An optional accessory is now available; the ‘protective plate’, included by default in the packaging of VC-Es with serial number 20A001675 or higher and all serial numbers starting with 20F. It is also available separately for customers who bought a VC-E before this accessory was included in the packaging. The protective plate is placed atop the bottom clamp, beneath the record, thereby protecting the record from any moisture leaving the vent.
In regular cleaning scenarios (less than 8-10 records) use of the plate shouldn’t be necessary. However if your’e cleaning many records in a row, or under certain air conditions, this new accessory should resolve any concerns with the VC-E and its vent.
An alternative for those more DIY minded is to fix a spout or pipe to the vent to extend it either beyond the record surface, or to direct its air flow away from the record. The included draining spout should work well for this purpose and can be a-fixed over the vent easily with tape or superglue, though it should be noted that a permanent modification would almost certainly invalidate the machine’s warranty.
There are some helpful hints from users who have experienced and fixed this issue in the comments beneath the VC-S2 ALU article. Head over there to read more.
In closing, a quick note on the COVID19 situation. Like many here we are in lockdown. Sample delivery in some cases has slowed primarily due to increased demand on delivery partners, and my own obligations mean content here has also taken a hit. Rest assured that there are reviews in the pipeline, as well as a couple of turntable builds and a few other items hopefully of interest. Until then I’m sure we can all join in giving our thanks to the key workers in our communities, and I hope you all stay safe and I wish everybody good health.