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Phono for LOMC or cartridge for phonostage

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  • Phono for LOMC or cartridge for phonostage

    What would you guys do, if you liked a LOMC, would you get a SUT and phono, or if you liked a phone like Aesthetix IO Sig, get a higher output cartridge instead of the LOMC so that the IO exhibits less noise

  • #2
    I'd look for an adjustable gain and load head amp, then you can use any cart with any phono stage you like (almost)
    Magnepan 1.6 QR Loudspeakers, Amherst A-2000 MOSFET 150 WPC Amp, Conrad Johnson PV-10A Modded Tube Line & Phono Stage, Electrocompaniet MC II Class A Head Amp, Audio Technica AT-OC9XML Cart (Stereo) , Graham Engineering 2.2 Tonearm (Stereo) , VPI Aries-1 Turntable (Stereo) , VPI Clamp, Denon DL-102 Cart, (Mono) , Luxman Tonearm (Mono) , Kenwood KD-500 Turntable (Mpmp) , Michell Clamp, Marantz 20B Analog FM Tuner, Pioneer SACD, Onkyo DX-6800 CD Transport, DIY 24B/192K DAC, Sennheiser HD-650 Headphones, Headroom Max Balanced Headphone Amp, DIY Silver Interconnects

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    • #3
      I went the custom wound SUT to match the cartridge route.
      Turntable: - 1. Fairchild 750/OMA slate plinth
      2. Analog Engineering AE-2008 MinusK support.
      Tonearm: 1. Schroder Custom
      2. Schick 12"
      3. Abis SA-1
      Cartridge: Miyajima Kansui and Premium BE Mono
      PhonoPre: AprilSound LR, EMIA Strain Gauge, EMIA silver SUT
      CD: Wadia 860x
      Server: Innuos Zen Mini Mk3
      DAC: Computer Audio Design 1543 Mk2
      Preamp: Bent Audio TAP-X w silver autoformers
      Amplifier: AprilSound SET50 monoblocks
      Speaker: Pioneer PAX-30C

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      • #4
        I always look for the highest gain cart possible that offers the delicacy I'm looking for. If tubes are your preference noise can be an issue. With good design and good tube selection less of an effort. I have the Io and use the Atlas , Lyra Etna SL and Koetsu RSP. I've never had an issue with noise... but I've spent a lot of time on tube selection and I have the Volume control option.

        My Goldfinger Statement is still in the box so that is another high output high performing MC , like the Atlas.

        As a rule though go for the highest output MC you can get with an active phono for my taste.

        Transformers that I have heard are a dynamic compromise. They are dead quite but wash the performance in a constrained way that is noticeable if you go active vs. transformer. I have never heard Kondo or uber expensive AN UK types so these may be different. On the solid state side I like the Klyne 7 series I had. I have not heard some of the latest from CH etc but have heard the Tenor etc.4





        Front end: Aesthetix Io Eclipse with 2 Power Supplies and Volume controls
        Brinkmann Balance & RonT Tube Power supply with Kuzma 4-point ,FR64S, Brinkmann 12.1 , .Koetsu Jade Platinum,Koetsu Rosewood Signature Platinum, Lyra Atlas, Lyra Etna SL Goldfinger Statement, KLAUDIO RCM, HRSM3X
        Amps: Wyetech Topaz, Futterman H3 Quad II,Citation II, Marantz 8b, 5 ,2
        Pre-Amps:Marantz 7, Marantz Model 1 Consolette Pair
        Speakers: Quad ESL 57, Beveridge Model 3 DD amps, REL S/2 x 2
        Otari 5050BXII, DeHavilland 222

        Comment


        • bonzo75
          bonzo75 commented
          Editing a comment
          How was the Tenor, anything like their amp?

      • #5
        Could you define what you mean by low output? What ranges are we talking about?
        Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
        Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
        ________________________________________

        -Zellaton Plural Evo speakers
        -Goldmund Telos 300 stereo amp
        -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
        -Doshi EVO and Goldmund PH3.8 phonostage
        -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
        -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
        -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga Mk. 2, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
        -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
        -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 6, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
        -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz 3 racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA OHIO Class 2.1+ platforms.

        Comment


        • bonzo75
          bonzo75 commented
          Editing a comment
          0.2v

        • Madfloyd
          Madfloyd commented
          Editing a comment
          Ked, if you're referring to the Zyx Premium, it's really more like .35

        • bonzo75
          bonzo75 commented
          Editing a comment
          Mine was hypothetical, because some are pretty low.

      • #6
        If the phono stage is noisy, and imo the Aesthetixs are with lomc's, they are off my buy list. I have had the Rhea and IO at home. IO is in another class to the Rhea, but the noise it had playing my dyna xv-1s at higher volumes was irritating.

        Comment


        • kcin
          kcin commented
          Editing a comment
          I haven't experienced the noise issue you speak of- you are correct that a low output MC requires careful selection of the phono/head amp stage and if tubes are used- must be selected carefully. I've measured 74db- (that's pretty quiet) down with mine and I could do better if I spent more time with the tubes. Nothing is quieter than solid state properly done and yet if you've heard an Io or MP1 or some of the higher M series phonos from AN UK properly configured there is a reason we do this. Having said all that, we all create our own illusion and that is what is most important. Cheers.

      • #7
        another thing to consider is the amount of gain needed to drive the back end (i.e speakers). if you're using horns >100 db sensitivity you'll find you can get away with less gain from your front end (mo' betta). over the years some of my preferred speakers were 83-85 db of sensitivity which asks a lot from the the phono preamp on down and will exacerbate 'self noise' from whichever pre/power amp combo you choose.
        TechDAS | Graham Eng | ZYX | B.M.C. | Boulder | Magico

        "Listening to Analogue music is an act of rebellion in a digital gulag" - Simon Yorke

        Comment


        • kcin
          kcin commented
          Editing a comment
          Yes the overall gain required is a factor of the overall gain of the total system and room interface- agreed.

      • #8
        As much as I love tubes--and if we are talking 0.2 mV (at 5 cm/s)--stay away from the all tube approach. I just think one will get more out of the Io, based on my audiobuddies experience, with a slightly higher output MC. Most modern phonostages are good with 0.5 mV nowadays. Funny enough, those 24 small signal tubes also really heat up a room very, very quickly.

        I just won't put up with noise anymore. Nor the lack of dynamics. There was a period in the '80s and '90s where I was willing to sacrifice macrodynamics with low output MCs in the pursiuit of what I considered more important microdynamics. No longer because there are phonostages that will give me both. And the issue with a pure all tube phonostage is that no matter how quiet the tubes are to begin with, they always get noisy. Sometimes in three months, other times a little longer. This noise just causes, like we can know hear in speakers, an uneven masking of the music.

        I know there's a "mysticism" about the sound of very low output cartridges. Sometimes v. low outputs are extremely good sounding but that's not always the case or worth the effort. Rarely do we get the opportunity to compare--say as with an Atlas v Atlas SL (or say other Lyras)--the same cartridge with different outputs. Plus I don't think with cartridges like the Atlas or Etna, or the CA Statement, that the headache is worth it. In addition, whether one will be able to use v. low output MCs depends on other factors mentioned above plus even the sensitivity of the amplifier. I was able to get away with say the ZYX cartridge and cj TEA 1bc with the 0.5 V sensitivity cj Premier 140 amps but not with the 1.8 V sensitivity ART amps. As much as I loved the sound of the all tube TEA phonostage. Just not enough oomph and quietness with the TEA.
        Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
        Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
        ________________________________________

        -Zellaton Plural Evo speakers
        -Goldmund Telos 300 stereo amp
        -Goldmund Mimesis 37S Nextgen preamplifier
        -Doshi EVO and Goldmund PH3.8 phonostage
        -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
        -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
        -Lyra Atlas SL Lambda, Fuuga Mk. 2, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MutechHayabusa, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
        -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
        -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 6, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies and Ensemble Power Cords
        -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz 3 racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA OHIO Class 2.1+ platforms.

        Comment


        • rockitman
          rockitman commented
          Editing a comment
          I assume you are referring to all tube "active gain" phono stages and not passive LCR/Transformer based all tube phono stages ? LCR network type phono stages are incredibly quiet regardless of cart output voltage ime....ie: My Allnic H5000DHT. The Lamm LP1 Sig...the same thing although it is not as full tube as the Allnic. I use a .15mv Lyra Olympos SL with both of them. I will put these two phono's up against any SS stage in the noise dept. 80dB for the Allnic, >78dB for the Lamm.

        • MylesBAstor
          MylesBAstor commented
          Editing a comment
          Yes how the gain is achieved. For example, all tube v. tube/SUT v. hybrid v. solid-state. Not many examples of the former any more.

      • #9
        I went with hybrid tube/FET technology. Very quiet. No problem with low output cartridges.

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