The first mod I installed on my turntable was not a necessary one. It wasn’t the most important to using the gear, but it completed the “PT01 S package” I envisioned in my head. That idea was to have a portable turntable with no extra wires. That means no external speaker, no crossfader attachment, and definitely no media player dangling from my deck.
Enter the Sound Plate from Scratch Toys. This $70 mod is a game changer in my eyes, and a great starting point for a novice DIY-er like myself. The Sound Plate runs the gambit of audio inputs: Bluetooth connection, USB, MircoSD, FM radio tuner, and yes, a trusty line in. Operated by buttons on the unit as well as an included IR remote, this is like getting version 2.0 of my turntable!
What’s in the Box
Sound Plate with attached wire harness
First, don’t forget to take out any batteries or disconnect the power cable from the PT01. Remove the 8 case screws from the underside of the turntable. Be careful flipping it back over as the screws will fall out.
Gently lift the bottom panel up about 3 inches and disconnect the 3 pin connectors holding it on. There is one black ribbon cable and 2 smaller audio cables. Set the top pieces aside (the one with most of the electronics on it. For this mod we will be spending most of our time with the bottom.
Next you’ll need to remove the screws holding the USB transfer board in place, as well as the power cable connected to it. Use caution around the ground wire, this is still needed. Once you remove the screws you can set the USB transfer board aside for now.
Now that the board is out of the way we can remove the steel plate that serves as part of the case wall. Slide it straight up and save it if you would like. It’s a nice piece of metal.
Disassembly is complete!
Slide the Sound Plate straight down into the slot where the steel plate was. **You will need to bend the plastic case out to fit over the buttons on the plate. . . DO THIS CAREFULLY** Make sure no wires are pinched underneath and slowly work the plate down until it is snug in place. You can see how the 2 screw posts help hold the plate in place.
Reinstall the USB transfer board so that it is now behind the Sound Plate. The port on your board should fit in line with the holes on the plate. Reconnect the ground in the same place but DO NOT reconnect the power wire.
Instead, you are going to connect the power wire to the harness that came on your Sound Plate. Then connect the short split of the wire to the power on your USB transfer board.
Wrap the radio antenna around a screw post. I decided to secure it with a little of my BFF for life, Gaffer Tape. Seriously if you don’t have any of this stuff, get it.
Now here comes the tricky part, and the part that is incorrect on Scratch Toys’ support page (for shame!). Your Sound Plate does not have a separate ground wire anymore, which the site says it does, so ignore that.
Again, here is something different than the online instructions. They even send your plate with a sheet of paper instructions detailing the change. Disconnect the wire with the red connector from the top panel and set it aside. Take the long gray wire from the Sound Plate and connect it into where the red connector was removed from the top panel. Again, this is a combination of multiple instruction sources, and it is hard to wrap your head around when you read it.
We’re in the home stretch now! Carefully flip the bottom panel over (because it is now attached to the top by 1 wire) and reattach the 2 remaining wires. One attaches to the USB transfer board in the white connector and the black ribbon cable connects the 2 brown boards.
Slowly close the case, making sure no wires are pinched around the edge as well as by any screw posts. Putting a screw through a wire will kill your mod pretty quickly. Replace the 8 case screws on the underside of the turntable. Don’t just screw one in all of the way and then move on, work around the turntable tightening each by a bit at a time. Replace your batteries if you’re using them, and turn on your deck. If all went well you should hear the sweet sound of your brand new player turning on.
After living with Scratch Toys Sound Plate for about a week now, I’ve started to figure out what it’s really great at as well as some things that you might want to know if you get one of your own.
First, and most important, I need to say how happy I am with the mod. It really has gotten me excited to keep working on my PT01, not to mention use it more. The installation was fairly easy, and a great first mod for me. Sound quality is excellent, Bluetooth works exactly as it should when pairing with my phone, and music begins playing as soon as you turn on the deck. The FM tuner is fun to mess around with too!
A few minor gripes I’ve developed are there as well. Be careful inserting your SD card as it is very easy to drop it into a small gap around the card reader in the 3D printed plate. It’s a huge pain to dig it out. There also is a firmware update that I tried to install, but couldn’t get to work. Perhaps mine is already the newest version from the factory, but I will keep trying. The update supposedly removes interruptions from hands-free calling as well as voice prompts. This has not been an issue for me yet though, since I just set up a MicroSD with a folder of beats and haven’t touched it since. Finally, the remote is just another thing to have to keep track of around the house, so I will have to figure out some sort of stash spot in the PT01 case.
If you would like to see the Sound Plate in action I highly recommend DJCity’s overview video. It’s what got me interested in the mod in the first place! I’m feeling confident after my first successful mod, we’ll see how long that lasts. Thanks for reading. If you would like to follow along on my quest for unnecessary turntable mods, keep your eyes on The Dojo by subscribing to my blog.
I won’t be including shipping in my cost calculations, and I will try to keep it a round number!