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  • Cartridge compatability

    I am getting one step closer to setting up my (dedicated) 2 channel vinyl only system . I have 2 cartridges that are being "STRONGLY" suggested by my local shops , first is a Linn krystal, second is an Ortofon cadenza bronze. I personally am leaning towards a Lyra kleos I like what I have read about this cartridge, also the upgrade value later on is appealing. Second choice is a cadenza black and of course I would need these to be compatible with my phono stage zestos andros 1.2 also my tt arm which is a project extension 10.
    Unfortunately I must make this purchase on blind faith (no demo) so I don't want to jump in without lots of research and advice .
    I will be running an all tube system from amps to phono stage. Max budget is about 2700.00 usd.
    Thanks in advance for any and all input.
    Manley neo classic 250 mono blocks.
    Monitor audio PL 300,
    Audio research LS 27,
    Zesto audio PS 1.2
    Project extension 10,
    Clearaudio sloution,
    Project debut carbon
    no fancy interconnects,or speaker cables yet

  • #2
    So here is what my thoughts are and what the word on the Street (well at least a street near where I live ;-) is.

    The Linn Kandid is so close to the standard version of the Kleaos that it's almost not worth the extra money unless you are flash for cash.
    I am biased on the Cadenza bronze as it's my main cartridge but I would have to say its a very different beast from the Lyra.
    It has both authority and neutrality but leans towards the warm romantic side (forget mushy or syrupy its a Ortofon after all).

    Also Consider this: Ortofon is low output (step up?) Lyra/Linn measured 1mv in Stereoplay magazine so again very different. You won't regret buying either one but which one suits your needs the most?
    Last edited by Billy Shears; 02-10-2018, 03:49 PM.

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    • #3
      Find your tonearm's effective mass and plug it in here: Cartridge Resonance Evaluator
      Spkr: Wilson Alexias series 2; Amps: Lamm M1.2Ref; Linestage and phono: ARC Ref 10 and ARC Ref 10 Phono; TT: GPA Monaco 2.0; Arms: Kuzma 4Point, Tri-planar Mk. VII U2-SE; Cartridges: Allnic Arrow/Puritas, Benz LP S, Fuuga, Lyra Etna, Transfiguration Phoenix, Denon DL-A100,DL103R; Cables: Shunyata Σ / Σ NR PC/SC/IC; Pwr Cond: Shunyata Triton III, Typhons(3); Isolation: SRA Scuttle3 rack, SRA Ohio Class amp stands, ; Acoustics: Stillpoints Apertures; Audio cat: Finzi

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      • #4
        I feel your pain. As a dealer, I struggle with phono cartridge selection and recommendation. Purchasing on blind faith is risky.

        If your local shops have strong recommendations for you, can they demonstrate the cartridges in the same table/arm/phono stage combo you have or similar? Listening is best.

        In my personal experience:
        I have not heard the Linn Krystal so can't comment.
        I am an Ortofon dealer. And of all the cartridges I have heard over the years, the Cadenza Bronze is my least favorite. I hated it. Go figure. As always, opinions vary.
        I am a Lyra dealer, and admit I like all of their cartridges, although they are pricey. I would lean toward the Kleos in your short list, it is a safe bet.

        There are a zillion cartridges to consider in your price range. Much of choosing the optimum cartridge for your system also depends on your taste in music and performance expectations.

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        • #5
          Your tonearm effective mass is on the lighter side of the modern "medium mass" spectrum, so a Kleos or carts like it in compliance / weight will likely be better than anything much heavier.

          Also, I haven't spent time with the Zestos but what the right cartridge output is to really work with your system gain / phono input will be a bit of an unknown till you get there.
          http://solypsa.com/

          Torqueo Audio, Primary Control, The Wand Tonearms, Etsuro Urushi & others in the Pacific NW

          Exclusive North America Dealer for Sensitive Sound MC cartridges

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          • #6
            I’m not sure how adjustable your tonearm is but if you can dial in the Lyra Kleos to the right height to get the vta and vtf set at Lyras recommendation you will have a great sounding cartridge that has a very high build quality and a very even tonal presentation.

            if you can get a new Kleos for $2700 jump on it. I think they list for closer to $3500 and have a wait list most of the time.

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            • #7
              Both cartridges are wonderful and top contenders at their price range. A couple of real life examples.

              - My brother had the Kleos and now has the Linn Krystal (he has a Linn LP12, ARC, Magnepan system). His system sound is very clean, neutral, revealing and musical.

              - I have the Cadenza Black with the Zesto Andros 1.2 (my table is a VPI Avenger, D’Agostino Pre & Power, Wilson Alexias). The Cadenza Black is a fantastic tracker, revealing, quiet and musical (not warm but not analytical). A great match for the Andros.

              Hope this perspective helped! Good luck!

              Mike
              Last edited by Ritmo; 02-08-2018, 10:17 PM.

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              • #8
                does your phonostage have adjustable gain and load impedance? make sure you can match up BOTH with the cart.
                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, Shelter 501 Mark II Cart (St) , Graham Engineering 2.2 Tonearm (St) , VPI Aries-1 Turntable (St) , VPI Clamp, Denon DL-102 Cart, (M) , Luxman Tonearm (M) , Kenwood KD-500 Turntable (M) , Michell Clamp, Marantz 20B Analog FM Tuner, Teac A3300SX R2R, Pioneer SACD, Onkyo DX-6800 CD Transport, DIY 24B/192K DAC, DIY Silver Interconnects

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                • #9
                  Yes my phonostage has adjustable gain and load impedance it is a zestos andros 1.2.

                  So if I understand the cartridge resonance evalulator guide, then the cadenza black would be the best match with my tonearm because it (tonearm)has mass of 8.5 grams. I was leaning towards the Lyra because of so many great reviews. I listen to a big variety of music from jazz to classical to blues and guitar and violin . I think I would be happier with a neutral cartridge since I have approx 30 plus tubes in my system and that should be a lot of warmth allready.
                  Manley neo classic 250 mono blocks.
                  Monitor audio PL 300,
                  Audio research LS 27,
                  Zesto audio PS 1.2
                  Project extension 10,
                  Clearaudio sloution,
                  Project debut carbon
                  no fancy interconnects,or speaker cables yet

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Please correct me if I am wrong, a low mass tonearm calls for a high compliance cartridge(which means higher weight cart and therefore stiffer cantilever ).
                    Manley neo classic 250 mono blocks.
                    Monitor audio PL 300,
                    Audio research LS 27,
                    Zesto audio PS 1.2
                    Project extension 10,
                    Clearaudio sloution,
                    Project debut carbon
                    no fancy interconnects,or speaker cables yet

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Burky View Post
                      Please correct me if I am wrong, a low mass tonearm calls for a high compliance cartridge(which means higher weight cart and therefore stiffer cantilever ).
                      higher compliance means the cantilever (which should in all cases be rigid) moves more easily within it's suspension, low compliance would be 'stiffer'

                      Tonearm effective mass, cartridge weight and compliance all factor into calculating the resonant frequency of the assembly. You want the resonant frequency below the range of musical information and above the range of subharmonic interference.
                      http://solypsa.com/

                      Torqueo Audio, Primary Control, The Wand Tonearms, Etsuro Urushi & others in the Pacific NW

                      Exclusive North America Dealer for Sensitive Sound MC cartridges

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        A good, nexpensive alternative to the Lyra that will track well in most any arm and offer a slightly warmer sound is the Dynavector DV20X2.
                        Transrotor Rossini Turntable w/Jelco SA-750DB
                        Audio Note Io Gold Cart. w/AN-S9 SUT
                        Audio Note CDT-Four Transport/Woo WDS-1 DAC
                        Ayre QX-5 Twenty Dig. Hub & 13” MacBook Pro w/Roon w/Melco N1A NAS
                        AN OTO Phono SE Signature Int. Amp w/AN-E SEC Silver Speakers w/Murata Super Tweeters
                        Purple J-Corder 1520 R2R and Nakamichi Dragon Cassette Deck
                        PSAudio P10 AC Regen./Equi=Tech Bal. Transformer
                        Harmonic Technology, Audio Note, Kondo Sound Labs, Stealth, AQ Cables
                        Woo GES w/Sfax SR-507 Headphones

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Burky View Post
                          Yes my phonostage has adjustable gain and load impedance it is a zestos andros 1.2.

                          So if I understand the cartridge resonance evalulator guide, then the cadenza black would be the best match with my tonearm because it (tonearm)has mass of 8.5 grams. I was leaning towards the Lyra because of so many great reviews. I listen to a big variety of music from jazz to classical to blues and guitar and violin . I think I would be happier with a neutral cartridge since I have approx 30 plus tubes in my system and that should be a lot of warmth allready.
                          The thing about many Japanese/Asian cartridges is their dynamic compliance typically is measured at 100Hz. Whereas US and Euro carts are typically measured at 10Hz. Every resonance calculator I've seen (including the vinyl engine's) presumes a dynamic compliance measurement done at 10Hz. There is no standard conversion (that I know of.) Typically the suggestion is to multiple the dynamic compliance number measured at 100Hz by 1.5 - 2.0.

                          The Kleos' dynamic compliance is cited at 12 x 10-6 cm/dyn @ 100Hz. So for purposes of using the resonance calculator I cited above, using 18-20cu is reasonable; this yields a lower resonance frequency with an 8.5g effective mass tonearm than 12cu. Remember to add fastener weight to the tonearm spec; I use 1 gram. Also consider the vinyl engine table with its yellow, green, and tan labeling is fairly conservative. Some - Ortofon for example - believe resonances of 7Hz and 12Hz fall in the 'safe zone' (green). So the bottom line of all this gobblygook is, based just on these numbers, you're probably fine with the Kleos wrt resonance frequency.
                          Spkr: Wilson Alexias series 2; Amps: Lamm M1.2Ref; Linestage and phono: ARC Ref 10 and ARC Ref 10 Phono; TT: GPA Monaco 2.0; Arms: Kuzma 4Point, Tri-planar Mk. VII U2-SE; Cartridges: Allnic Arrow/Puritas, Benz LP S, Fuuga, Lyra Etna, Transfiguration Phoenix, Denon DL-A100,DL103R; Cables: Shunyata Σ / Σ NR PC/SC/IC; Pwr Cond: Shunyata Triton III, Typhons(3); Isolation: SRA Scuttle3 rack, SRA Ohio Class amp stands, ; Acoustics: Stillpoints Apertures; Audio cat: Finzi

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