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11-29-2010 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,486
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 1
Post ID: 15017
Reply to: 15017
The mono cartridges paradox.
fiogf49gjkf0d
I recently assembled my analog setup and the last week played some record - I did not do it for 6 months or so due to all reconstructions….
Playing last well Bruno Walter M4 from 1948 I come across an observation – why our mono cartridges are so screwed up?

For anyone who plays records it is well known that mono cartridges have advantage to lay mono records. I do have some mono cartridges, have a dedicated arm and I tent to play old mono records with mono-needle. However, I do feel that still the best stereo cartridges do better job on mono records. Sure they are much nosier and have many other problems on mono records but stereo cartridges just better sonically themselves and for the best result I prefer to play my best mono record by my best stereo cartridges.

So, I wonder why the companies that do cartridges do not produce these best needles in just mono version. Why any mono cartridges do sound differently then it stereo brothers? I think that whole point shall be that if a company did found a good cartridges configuration and render it in their flagman stereo version then why they do not apply the same successes in mono needle? At least this is what I observed so far.

The Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
11-29-2010 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,104
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 2
Post ID: 15019
Reply to: 15017
Level of Expectations/Demands
fiogf49gjkf0d
Interesting observation/question.  I think some "manufacturers" at least pay attention to this idea, offering dedicated mono "versions" of their "better" cartridges.  But as far as the old "classic" mono cartridges go, I think it is a fine line between what they can do in terms of their absolute limits versus what they do not do, in terms of screwing up.  I do believe there is plenty of Music to be gotten from older recordings.  At the same time, I wonder if it is realistic to expect the same sort of sound from them that we get from more modern stereo playback.  I have said many times, and it remains true: Given sonic parity apart from mono versus stereo, I'll take stereo every time.  In cases where I have early "original" mono LPs and also stereo dubs from them, it depends on the quality of the transfer.  In some cases, the stereo trumps the original "immediacy" despite "lesser" sound quality.

As for stereo needles doing a better job than the specialized mono needles, I would say it is case-by-case, just as I find it case-by-case whether a "mono" LP will sound "better" played in electronic "mono" or "stereo" playback.  Generally, I wind up going with the choice that offers the best ambience; but not always.  Sometimes "immediacy" wins out.  For 78 lacquers, is there really a choice?

Best regards,
Paul S
07-18-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
N-set
Gdansk, Poland
Posts 441
Joined on 01-07-2006

Post #: 3
Post ID: 16688
Reply to: 15017
Pierre Clement
fiogf49gjkf0d
Has anybody tried this:

http://www.analog-collector.com/bonus/cellules/default.htm

Very costly and a copy but..maybe...?



Cheers,
Jarek
07-18-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,486
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 4
Post ID: 16689
Reply to: 16688
Might be interesting indeed.
fiogf49gjkf0d
 N-set wrote:
Has anybody tried this:

http://www.analog-collector.com/bonus/cellules/default.htm

Very costly and a copy but..maybe...?
I never heard it or about it and it might be interesting. Well, as interesting as any other basement-built cartridge – it might be pretty much anything from a very good to garbage and no one has control or verification of it. I found it is bit conspicuous that they do not inform what the shape of the needle they have; to me it would be important to know in case of mono cartridge. Also, that output of 20 mV – this is VERY high. So it is not MC cartridge I guess and they filed to inform what type it is.

Another thing that I am not sure about is the length of the cartridge. There is no data available but from the picture it looks like it is way loner then standard SME shell. If so then it will blow up the default SME overhanging and the arm geometry needs to be readjusted if one flips this cartridge to another on the same arm.  I think the whole idea to have a cartridge with SME bayonet is that all interchangeable SME shells with cartridges must preserve the same distance from pivot to needle point. BTW, some of the US makers make their cartridges a bit shorter, like Grado for instance; their needles a few mm shorter from bolt points them most of the other cartridges. I truly hate it.

Rgs, Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
07-19-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
N-set
Gdansk, Poland
Posts 441
Joined on 01-07-2006

Post #: 5
Post ID: 16690
Reply to: 16689
It's MM
fiogf49gjkf0d
I agree that the QC is probably non-existant there (the involved people correct me if I'm wrong
and show your QC procedures, seriously).
The holy original was made by Ikeda, as a google search reveals.
They say that it's a MM:

"The Pierre Clément cartridge will be easily used because of its standard moving magnet jointed up a 47 K Ohm input."

But, yes, it must be stated more clearly along with other info
 (unless it's a holy copy of a holy cart for a small group of the cult followers...)
Anyway, if anybody has any experience/info, would be nice to learn.



Cheers,
Jarek
07-20-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Romy the Cat


Boston, MA
Posts 9,486
Joined on 05-28-2004

Post #: 6
Post ID: 16691
Reply to: 16690
The cartridge lottery
fiogf49gjkf0d

 N-set wrote:
I agree that the QC is probably non-existant there (the involved people correct me if I'm wrong
and show your QC procedures, seriously).
The holy original was made by Ikeda, as a google search reveals.
They say that it's a MM:

"The Pierre Clément cartridge will be easily used because of its standard moving magnet jointed up a 47 K Ohm input."

But, yes, it must be stated more clearly along with other info
 (unless it's a holy copy of a holy cart for a small group of the cult followers...)
Anyway, if anybody has any experience/info, would be nice to learn.

Yes, 47K load it has to be MM, not MC cartridge will be loaded so high unless they have a transformer built-in into the shell. Furthermore with 20mV of output voltage it has to me MM with HUGE amount of turn in coil or with very strong and very heavy magnet. I can drive my MF diver from 200mV, here is a cartridge that has 1/10 of it.

The QC. This is a more complex subject. You might be right: the QC is probably non-existant there, but so with any other cartridge manufacture. Even such a fame cartridge makers like Grado, Shelter and Ortophon have plenty faulty cartridges and I would not be surprised if each second of their cartridges is out of specification or out of performance.  I do not care what the marketing people say out there but to me QC is not the assurance of manufacturer that they automate and test the production but the ability of consumer to return the good if it does not perform upon expectation. Did you try to buy a cartridge, recognize that you do not like something and to try to return it back? Good luck with it.

I think in today would we lost the battle for cartridge QA and we need to knowledge that the industry feed us with whatever they want and we have no control over it. The only assurance you might get if you have personal relation with a cartridge maker and he does the custom job for you specificly. The rest is a put lottery…

Rgs,
Romy the Cat


"I wish I could score everything for horns." - Richard Wagner. "Our writing equipment takes part in the forming of our thoughts." - Friedrich Nietzsche
07-20-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
N-set
Gdansk, Poland
Posts 441
Joined on 01-07-2006

Post #: 7
Post ID: 16692
Reply to: 16691
Who keeps the standards? Rise up!
fiogf49gjkf0d
 Romy the Cat wrote:

Did you try to buy a cartridge, recognize that you do not like something and to try to return it back? Good luck with it.

I think in today would we lost the battle for cartridge QA and we need to knowledge that the industry feed us with whatever they want and we have no control over it.


I've recently survived an authorized rebuild of an TSD15 by the noble EMT house. I got the cart back. In a nice sealed
box and with all the QC masturbation well done: measurements, numbers, signatures, datecodes, etc.
The cart performed worse than a cheap DJ cart, fucked all of its life by an adept of scratching.
It was unable to tarck past 1/3rd of the record and on loud and complex passages distorted more than a pocket
transistor radio. Back it went to EMT. After trying to use a good sould inbetween me and EMT
(I've commisioned the cart repair through him) to make an idiot out of myself, claiming e.g. that
the conical profile does misstrack and what I expect from it, they've finally, after quite some resistance and not
very explicitly admitted
that there was something on a diamond....yes, sure, I've put there a second one of my own production,
after playing less than 10hrs of new or RCM cleaned LP's only.The've done a second repair (of course
free of charge) and so far so good...

Aparently my case was not the first--by google search I've found a very similar symptom-wise
description at AA.

Besides EMT uses some type of rubber which deteriorates and apparently has to be changed every
5 or so yrs. I'm wondering if that's a marketing trick or really in our high-tech word they cannot design
a suitable durable suspension material?

 Romy the Cat wrote:

The only assurance you might get if you have personal relation with a cartridge maker and he does the custom job for you specificly. The rest is a put lottery…


Since this Pierre Clement cart is such a esoteric piece, perhaps the involved people would like
to try to make some personal relations? Would be interesting to hear what  say about their own
needle and the whole process.




Cheers,
Jarek
07-21-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Paul S
San Diego, California, USA
Posts 2,104
Joined on 10-12-2006

Post #: 8
Post ID: 16693
Reply to: 16692
"OEM", "Branding", and Getting Hosed
fiogf49gjkf0d
While it may be that a given "basement" operation really means to "do a better job" in terms of QA and/or sonic results, the technical difficulty (and cost) of actually doing this with tiny "critical specification" parts must be daunting, to say the least.  Even larger companies are unwilling to take on this sort of operation/expense, and the truth is that most cartridge "manufacturers" are really mostly/only sales outfits, for all the hyperbole attending the marketing of a "high-end" cartridge.  I note with tempered sadness that even Ortofon has moved to "standardize" their line-up, even though they still, to my knowledge, produce "in-house" quite a few of their own parts, including critical damping "donuts".  Lord knows where other "manufacturers" get their parts, or if those sources are constant/consistent.  Certainly, once the burden of overhead sets in there is pressure to "keep 'em coming", regardless of QA.  How  anyone could precisely anchor (or re-anchor) a stylus to a cantilever or a cantilever to the motor and/or cartridge body while maintaining critical mass, alignment, resonance, etc. is one of the Great Audio Mysteries, and ongoing variability of high-end cartridges is one of Audio's not-so-well-kept dirty little secrets.  A friend who bought a new cartridge "like mine" a while back instead got zapped with the notorious "sagging cantilever" and the subsequent scrambling to recover some of his cash.  He was forewarned, but he took a chance, and he suffered.  Bummer.  But this is, unfortunately, the sort of BS that attends the world/process of high-end/high-expectations cartridges.  Basically, according to my experience - and as we have already noted hereabouts - with cartridges, you pays your money and you takes your chance.

As for the cartridge in question, is a VTF like this really necessary, or is it a good idea?  I ask because it seems to harken back to the Edison/cactus needle.  And what's wrong with the SPU that this thing would fix?  Or is it the intoxicating allure of the "Underground"?  As ever - especially with cartridges - Caveat Emptor.

Best regards,
Paul S
07-24-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
N-set
Gdansk, Poland
Posts 441
Joined on 01-07-2006

Post #: 9
Post ID: 16708
Reply to: 15017
Mono EMT's
fiogf49gjkf0d
Not sure how interesting they are, but EMT seems to make
dedicated mono carts OFD25 (65 for '78). According to fabtech.de :

"The OF-series pick-up's are pure mono versions. The transducer is constructed in a way to read
only horizontal trackings. The coil is connected to the right channel (the horizontal pins)."

http://www.fabtech.de/en_pick-ups_usage.html

As far as I understand this is an old design,  which comes from the Ortofon PU,
so no idea if it really brings something "new" in the mono pool. I'm trying to tresearch it a bit more.
 
There is also a mono version of TSD15, TMD15. It may or may not be what Romy has initially
asked for (a mono cart on par with it's stereo brother), but there is some point with it (fabtech.de):

"The T-series transducer is constructed in a way, that it is possible to read horizontal as well as vertical tracks.
The mono versions TMD and TND are built with only one coil which is connected only to the right channel
output (the horizontal pins) by historical reasons. Caused by the construction, vertical trackings, like bending
of the record or dust will be read as well."








Cheers,
Jarek
07-25-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Serge


Russia
Posts 51
Joined on 09-21-2009

Post #: 10
Post ID: 16712
Reply to: 16688
This Peirre Clement looks like a moving iron or something
fiogf49gjkf0d
 N-set wrote:
Has anybody tried this:

http://www.analog-collector.com/bonus/cellules/default.htm

Very costly and a copy but..maybe...?


Looks like a cross between moving iron and some old and forgotten electromagnetic cart from the 30-s. Isn't the cantilever a strip of high carbon steel (iron)? So it is not an MC, is it?
Never had it, just looking at the photos...



http://hifiblog.livejournal.com/
07-25-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
Serge


Russia
Posts 51
Joined on 09-21-2009

Post #: 11
Post ID: 16714
Reply to: 16712
Miyajima makes monos
fiogf49gjkf0d
http://www.hifi.com.sg/products/cartridge/miyajima/monaural.htm
http://www.miyajima-lab.com/e-mono.html










http://hifiblog.livejournal.com/
07-25-2011 Post does not mapped to Knowledge Tree
N-set
Gdansk, Poland
Posts 441
Joined on 01-07-2006

Post #: 12
Post ID: 16715
Reply to: 16712
More info on Pierre Clement
fiogf49gjkf0d
Serge, you may be right, there is some little info on Vinyl Engine and they
state it's a moving iron:

http://www.vinylengine.com/cartridge_database.php?m=Pierre+Clement&t=any&mod=&sort=2&Search=Search&sty=&ovlo=&ovhi=&can=&dclo=&dchi=&stid=&masslo=&masshi=&notes=&prlo=&prhi=

The output  VE states is 10mV compared to the 20mV that the coppiers state...unless they have increased the output 2x?



Cheers,
Jarek
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  »  New  Multiple EQ curves of Arthur Loesch and Tempo Electric..  Before Hi-Fi...  Analog Playback Forum     1  17568  02-22-2010
  »  New  What is the difference between the cartridges?..  Some more links about Dynavector cartridges...  Analog Playback Forum     6  46936  09-12-2004
  »  New  Buying a last cartridge...  Lucky you...  Analog Playback Forum     80  515745  09-05-2008
  »  New  Tell me about more about Ortofone SPU Sound...  Earthy matters...  Analog Playback Forum     54  347623  12-01-2004
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