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About ianm0

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  1. Sorry that I come to the party so late. I don't think there is a clear answer based on my experience. It is easy to work out the numbers on the stepped up output and load seen by the cartridge. But the general accepted wisdom may not give the best sound. Let me share my recent surprised experience after spinning vinyl for decades. In the past, I first picked the step up ratio to observe the phono input limit (set by accepted wisdom) of 10 mV and then proceed to adjust the loading. (Of course, there are a lot of debate about the pros and cons of the latter.) Lately I read about the SUT from Bobs Devices that only offers 40x step up ratio, a departure from his previous switchable 20x/40x. I then revisited the spec of the Shelter SUT 411. Its step up ratio is 32db (=40x) while my Shelter 901 cartridge has an output of 0.5 mV. That makes a phono input of 20 mV, which is well beyond the aforementioned 10 mV limit. (Note: my preamp phono has an exceptional high overload limit of 200mV!!) That made me think: "Have I been wrong all these years following traditional wisdom?" The only way to find out is trial. Immediate effects: more solid bass, smoother strings, airier vocals and more musical all around. I have stuck with it since. Needless to say, the load changed from 117 to under 30 ohms. I had tried both when I was using 20x, but definitely 40x is a marked improvement. Perhaps one more point I should stress. No switching. Hard wire your turn ratio.
  2. Are these Signature 3 series cable? If yes, have they been re-terminated? Don't recall seeing their RCA plugs on Signatures?
  3. Just realized there may be more than one for sale. I am taking one only.
  4. @misternaviAre supporting discs under the spikes included? Didn't see them in photos.
  5. You said line preamp, but saw phono jacks in the back. Is the phono board an option not included?
  6. I have still my 1C's which have been sitting idle for the past ten years. They have black Heils and dated back to early 80's. I am the first owner. Also Passive radiators replacements are easily available. Your big soft spot is justified.
  7. I think the business model of Soundsmith has evolved from repairing cartridges to manufacturing expensive cartridges. Peter Ledermann can't possibly have time to do all cartridge repairs personally - aggravated by their increased popularity - as claimed on their web site when I sent in my last cartridge a few years back. I believe my botched up FR I mentioned probably was done by one of his trainees. [Edit] Forgot to mention that when the Supex was first returned to me, the cantilever was mounted at a low, low angle of 17 degrees unloaded. Took a few emails and photos to get return authorization. The damning report I mentioned a couple of posts ago referred to the follow up repair.
  8. @stever I had a FR-Mk3F retipped by Soundsmith for the most costly retip. When it came back, it wouldn't track anything at its max recommended VTF 2g. Dared not go too much further with VTF, I had to convince them to have another look after numerous emails, which included a CRO image of the very distorted 1000 hz test signal. A few weeks later, they said nothing was wrong with the retip except the correct VTF should be 2.6 g instead. I thought they would have tested the cartridge before sending it back to me the first time and warned me about this drastic increase in VTF. Didn't sound too good at 2.6g. Very unhappy about this experience. Suspect it was a botched job. Their confession it's a difficult cartridge to work on confirmed my suspicion. I know SM has a huge following, but my other Supex 900 Super experience was far from satisfactory either. I sent them the damning report by another repairer on their Supex job and they didn't bother to reply. That's why I am ready to name them. I am thinking of having the FR redone, but need to know that VTF issue could be resolved or not. If you have any luck with Garrott Brother, please let me know.
  9. Congratulations. You won't regret it. I've had the Harbeths for nearly 7 years and have enjoyed every minute with them. Bargain price too, especially with the stands.
  10. That certainly is useful addition information that I am not aware of. Thanks.
  11. " Goods that arrive by mail and have a declared or assessed value equal to or less than AUD1000 will not incur duty, taxes or charges, unless they are alcoholic beverages, tobacco, or tobacco products. " Source: http://www.border.gov.au/Busi/cargo-support-trade-and-goods/importing-goods/importing-by-post-or-mail
  12. The $1000 threshold does not include shipping.
  13. Is shipping cost included? The $1000 tax free amount is before freight. Once that is exceeded, shipping cost included in tax/duty calculation. First they figure in a 5% import duty. In other words 105% of what the items cost. Then add on shipping. From there, 10% GST of total. Finally some miscellaneous charges (fixed?). So the total excess amount is more than 15%. 16-17% is more like it.
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