Jump to content

Show us your Phono Stages and Phono Cartridges


Recommended Posts

I would be good for all to post their phono stages and cartridges that us vinyl dudes are using. Does not matter how cheap or expensive, its the vinyl enjoyment that matters and will be interesting to see what is popular.

I think the Nighthawk F117 will be damm close to the most popular phono stage , and rightly so given the great pricing coupled great sound.

cartridges - denon 103 - maybe ?

phono first, cart's later.

Newest edition to listening stable - almost vintage Luxman E-06 from 1987. The only SS item I have and it sounds smooth, powerful with a density that is addictive. Choice of 2 x MC and 1 x MM inputs.

5580663889_b466bd1dbe_b.jpg

TW Acustic phono - 3 x MC input with on the fly resistance loading adjustment. Pretty neutral sounding, great extension with that tube magic.

5580676239_a234c4b37a_b.jpg

Leben phono and Ortofon verto SUT. fast toe tapping musical tube phono, not the last word in bass impact that couples sweetly with SUT's.

5580456657_bb30c56509_b.jpg

classik tube cj EV-1 phono from the early 2000's which is nimble, open with tight bass and mates well with MM's as well as mid loutput MC's. Always snapped up on the s/h market and I can hear why.

5580667899_4ebbe52e8f_b.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Replies 3.9k
  • Created
  • Last Reply

Top Posters In This Topic

Top Posters In This Topic

Popular Posts

Lyra Atlas Lambda SL.       Brand new Lambda version which sounds a little different to the old one and gone from green body to purple. crazy price for new, but Lyra have generous rebuild prices

just thought i should add mine to this collection   Duc  

The final pieces of the puzzle for the Kuzma Stabi Ref 2 arrived last week - the Kuzma 313 Ref VTA tonearm and CAR 40 cartridge.   The arm replaces the 9" Stogi Ref (which I was actually ver

Sorry--no pictures--

Phono stage is the moving coil option in my ME15 pre-amp.

Cartridge is a Linn Troika, renovated and re-tipped by Len Gregory "The Cartridge Man"

Greg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Greg, Kool, I luv the Troika. I am lucky enough to be borrowing one on my LP12/Naim ARO at the moment. re-tipped by ESC.

Is the troika actually re-tipped by Len Gregory? some rumours have it is done by Goldring and other rumous done by ESC??

Link to post
Share on other sites


Sweet.


I have a Goldring 1042 feeding the Phono stage of a Copland CSA14. I also have a pair of Morite SUTs that I'm going to make up a box with adjustable loading.


 

post-6339-133211982204_thumb.jpg

post-6339-133211982212_thumb.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderators

I have the cheapest and simplest of the SoundSmith Strain Gauge phono amps. The left hand switch is on/off, the right hand one turns on the auto-mute function: when it detects no motion, it cuts the sound from the cartridge. This lessens the noise when lowering the cartridge or lifting it.

The screw on the cartridge is to allow azimuth adjustment on the cartridge body itself in case you have a tonearm that doesn't allow for it. If you look carefully you can see that the stylus assembly is removable - great idea that saves money. The blue lights are a bit of bling that's not really to my taste but I suppose as the cartridge is powered, it's too good an opportunity to pass up for some:)

post-2103-133211982217_thumb.jpg

post-2103-13321198242_thumb.jpg

Edited by Marc
  • Like 3
Link to post
Share on other sites
[ATTACH=CONFIG]30372[/ATTACH]

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30373[/ATTACH]

My Lyra Clavis. :-)

Nice, the Clavis is 20 years old now. have you had it since new, or something recent, re tipped - do Lyra do rebuilds? IMO the clavis and Parnassus look a lot better than the current Lyra's. can't comment on sound as last Lyra I heardwas a helikon.

Link to post
Share on other sites


Guest Bodhisattva

Hi all, having just recently turned to the 'dark side', I thought i'd share some pics of my new phono stage - the Bladelius Heimdal. For the older audiophiles amongst us, you might recognize the name. The President/Chief Designer of Bladelius is none other than Mike Bladelius. Mike designed the legendary Threshold Class A amps back in the 80's and went on to be Chief Consulting Designer for Classe. The Heimdal is a balanced solid state phono stage constructed with impeccable build quality and delivers excellent sound. The things I like about this phono stage? It is one of the few phono stages which has balanced inputs and outputs, and is 'true balanced', does not hold back in the power supply and responds well to tweaks. Made in Sweden. Super clean, open, dynamic sound and just seems to be a perfect match with the FB. Fully adjustable inputs to match any pick up type or load, and although it is a bit sparing for features and published information, the bottom line for me is, it's plain good value.

Cheers,

Bodhi

ps: the coffee table is still for sale :)

IMG_1572.jpg

IMG_1576.jpg

Edited by Bodhisattva
Link to post
Share on other sites


[ATTACH=CONFIG]30399[/ATTACH]

Accuphase C240 Preamp with 2 MC/MM inputs

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30398[/ATTACH]

Accuphase C265 with 2 AD-10 MM/CC phone stage cards

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites

Well, no Nighthawk yet TT, so I may as well be the first. Here's my two phono stages...........GSP Era Gold Reflex and the F-117 Nighthawk.

Garrard401115.jpg

Cheers,

Keith

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites


Guest Bodhisattva
[ATTACH=CONFIG]30399[/ATTACH]

Accuphase C240 Preamp with 2 MC/MM inputs

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30398[/ATTACH]

Accuphase C265 with 2 AD-10 MM/CC phone stage cards

Which is your favourite phono stage FG?

Bodhi

Link to post
Share on other sites
Nice, the Clavis is 20 years old now. have you had it since new, or something recent, re tipped - do Lyra do rebuilds? IMO the clavis and Parnassus look a lot better than the current Lyra's. can't comment on sound as last Lyra I heardwas a helikon.

I got it 2nd hand way back in '99. It's been lightly used by myself since I've had it, and was lightly used by the previous owner I believe. When I sent it down to Sydney to get it all put on my new Clearaudio Champion Level II table, the guys said that the Right hand suspension is starting to go. So, a new cartridge shortly I guess. I do not believe Lyra retips, which is silly really. I do not like the look of the new Lyras either. As Lyra do not re-tip, I will probably steer clear of their cartridges and try another brand. I personally find that what Lyra does is very poor after service. I guess they want to maximise their profits...

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderators
I got it 2nd hand way back in '99. It's been lightly used by myself since I've had it, and was lightly used by the previous owner I believe. When I sent it down to Sydney to get it all put on my new Clearaudio Champion Level II table, the guys said that the Right hand suspension is starting to go. So, a new cartridge shortly I guess. I do not believe Lyra retips, which is silly really. I do not like the look of the new Lyras either. As Lyra do not re-tip, I will probably steer clear of their cartridges and try another brand. I personally find that what Lyra does is very poor after service. I guess they want to maximise their profits...

You can always send it to Garrott Brothers. They always do an excellent job.

Link to post
Share on other sites

You did say "doesn't matter if it's cheap". So here's mine.

Not a dedicated phono stage just my pre-amp; A NAD 116 which has MM & MC swirtching

And the cart is an old Empire 2000E/lll. Also have 2 AT95E's The pic of the Empire is a Googled one, mine has an original red stylus with guard. my camera skills are not good

bb8a81fb.jpg?t=1301811238

27e1b279.jpg?t=1301810961

Edited by Grumpy
  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

I've got the MC stage in my ME 15 pre that i used exclusively for a couple of years. It sounded best when i ran a Van Den Hul MC10 Special through it.

me15.jpg

Since 2001 though this Plinius M 14 has sat in the background and sounded excellent regardless of what cartridge i've used. Monumental but always tight bass is probably the standout trait. It can sound a little bit dry with some cartridges but that's the only thing i'd ever put my finger on that wasn't what i wanted. I've never had any urge to try a different ss phono stage.

hifi91.jpg

The NVA Phono 2 that i use in the study system. The worst phono stage, in fact the worst piece of electronics i've ever used regarding RFI. I've got it sat at the bottom of the turntable stand on a couple of blocks of wood and it sounds neutral with excellent detail and bass and the sound belies its low price. Loads of lovely quiet gain. If it sits 2 inches higher though it picks up a hum from the Densen amp, any lower and picks up hum from something else. If i walk in the room with a mobile phone that happens to ring the whole system collapses in a racket of beeps and pulses. Fortunately the leads from the very hefty power supply are long so you can at least site it far away from that but there's no way in a million years you could stack it on top or alongside another component that had an electrical signal going through it.

The body is plastic.

nva.jpg

Cartridges.

Denon DL 304. My 3rd or maybe 4th over the years. It's a ripper as long as you can get enough clean gain.

denon304.jpg

Nagaoka MP 300. Good and exciting and rich and toe tapping. Loses out badly to the MCs in detail and air.

Nagaoka.jpg

Ortofon Cadenza Black. Replaced my second Ortofon Jubilee as it seemed the natural replacement from Ortofon. I prefer the Jubilee in my system as the Cadenza can have a rather unpleasant shrillness to it. I think the system in fact might be holding back the cartridge or it might just not be my cup of tea.

hifi6.jpg

An Ortofon 320 U that i use on a Technics SL3 linear tracker that i bought new in 1982 or thereabouts that i use exclusively for singles in the study. Sounds like 1982. That is not a bad thing.

technics11.jpg

Oh yes, i run the Technics SL3 through the phono stage of this lovely old Sansui A40 and then into the Densen via the tape loops. VU meters rock my jocks and i'll often run a signal through that amp just to have the meters showing

technics4.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

Leben phono and Ortofon verto SUT. fast toe tapping musical tube phono, not the last word in bass impact that couples sweetly with SUT's.

5580456657_bb30c56509_b.jpg

Interesting. I've been looking at the Leben for quite a while as it seems a sensibly priced way to get into a quality tubed phono pre, it's good to see someone who has got one. I might be picking your brains in 6 months or so's time:>)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Not a separate phono stage but very nice as a bundled extra: ARC SP16 MM phono stage (3 tubes on the right of the pic).

ARC%20phono.jpg

MC signal boosted by Bob's Devices SUT:

cinemag.jpg

At the moment I'm using a few different 103r cartridges - here are two in the Uwe Panzerholz and Midas aluminium bodies, both with stock stylus/cantilever.

2x103r.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

TT should recognise my phono stage:D

Sounds great!

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30419[/ATTACH]

Ortofon 2M Blue on an RPM 5

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30420[/ATTACH]

Denon DL160 that spends time on my LP12

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30421[/ATTACH]

And a AT-OC9 MLII that also spends time on the Linn

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30422[/ATTACH]

Sorry about the crappy pics, as my mobile is the only camera I own........

Hope to get a modded 103 to add to the collection soon.

Link to post
Share on other sites

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30423[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]30424[/ATTACH]

I also have a Leben RS30EQ, and am using a Benz Micro Wood H2 cartridge at the moment, and very nice it is too!

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
Love the big vintage Luxman and understated Leben phono.

Some other nice gears on show from the others.

Jasper. ta, but I think most of us are waiting to see your pics

Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Bodhisattva
Love the big vintage Luxman and understated Leben phono.

Some other nice gears on show from the others.

A second on the Leben :nana They make great value gear. The headphone amps built into their CS-300XS & CS-600 integrateds are widely recognized as some of the best in the biz.

Link to post
Share on other sites

now for some cartridges

Ortofon A90. sophisticated and always under control - my go to cartridge

4205133767_d65dc2b40b_z.jpg?zz=1

Technics EPC P100 Mk4 - NOS last year - flatline frequency response and similary neutral - the best MM ever and a great cartridge period

4439753573_ff6b2dd6ca_z.jpg

Dynavector XV-1, my reference from around 2001 to just before the A90. in need of a dynavector rebuild for the 3rd time.

2621042250_9d0d216e8c_z.jpg?zz=1

Ortofon SPU Royal. the SPU sound is intoxicating and they luv SUT's

3653630620_608c63a5d4_z.jpg

Ebony wood body Denon 103R - a classik cartridge with some added smoothness

4070999309_80ff522233_z.jpg

Very neutral, highly detailed but never bright and slightly laid back Denon DL-S1

5580473705_115a03c612_z.jpg

  • Like 2
Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest Bodhisattva
[ATTACH=CONFIG]30423[/ATTACH][ATTACH=CONFIG]30424[/ATTACH]

I also have a Leben RS30EQ, and am using a Benz Micro Wood H2 cartridge at the moment, and very nice it is too!

Well done Neil, you've built a lovely system with proven high end gear. I especially like the warm tone of your Leben components & Benz cart against the rich timber of your cabinet...good stuff :nana

Link to post
Share on other sites
Jasper. ta, but I think most of us are waiting to see your pics

No pics. A few to service all the turntable, tonearms and cartridges.

Allnic Audio H1500SE II LCR tube phono ( 4 input - 2MM and 2 MC)

K&K Audio Maxxed Out tube phono (2 input - MM and MC)

Musical Surroundings Supernova ( 4 input)

Supratek Chenin preamp build in tube phono (single MC)

Ray Samuel Audio Nighthawk (MM/MC)

Nakamichi CA-7 pre ( build in MM and MC phono - rec out )

Link to post
Share on other sites
Well done Neil, you've built a lovely system with proven high end gear. I especially like the warm tone of your Leben components & Benz cart against the rich timber of your cabinet...good stuff :nana

Cheers! It was a big change from the Dyn C4/Pass/Shindo stuff I had before, but I have to admit I am enjoying it even more!

Link to post
Share on other sites
No pics. A few to service all the turntable, tonearms and cartridges.

Allnic Audio H1500SE II LCR tube phono ( 4 input - 2MM and 2 MC)

K&K Audio Maxxed Out tube phono (2 input - MM and MC)

Musical Surroundings Supernova ( 4 input)

Supratek Chenin preamp build in tube phono (single MC)

Ray Samuel Audio Nighthawk (MM/MC)

Nakamichi CA-7 pre ( build in MM and MC phono - rec out )[/QUO

I think for your health and focus you need to reduce the numbers jaspert;)

Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't have a photo of my actual unit so i pinched this of the net. Dynevactor P75 MK II

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30435[/ATTACH]

This time a pic of my actual cart. Ortofon Kontrapunkt A

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30436[/ATTACH]

Won't get into the nitty gritty, but will say together they produce a sound i enjoy a lot.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I think for your health and focus you need to reduce the numbers jaspert;)

Wise words, especially the part on loss of focus. I'm trimming them down.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Ha Jaspert are you trimming the Allnic Audio H1500SE II LCR ?

Ok I won't cause any trouble here with my selection but would like your thoughts on the Allnic.

Thinking of a four box unit too nuts to talk about but hmmmm.

Link to post
Share on other sites
Ha Jaspert are you trimming the Allnic Audio H1500SE II LCR ?

Ok I won't cause any trouble here with my selection but would like your thoughts on the Allnic.

Thinking of a four box unit too nuts to talk about but hmmmm.

Cmon Good Vibe, list what you have that gives you enjoyment :-)

Link to post
Share on other sites

I haven't had a chance to take pics but here are mine:

Phono Stage

RCM Sensor Prelude (stock pics from the 'net):

1272456400.jpg

sensor_tyl_1_small.jpg

Same as mine except mine is black.

Cartridge

Blue Angel Mantis in Tulip Wood - the only one in Tulip Wood as far as I know. Pics are from my gallery on the Vinyl Engine:

album_pic.php?pic_id=9571&full=true

album_pic.php?pic_id=9522&full=true

Great combo for me at least. Love the Blue Angel and although the RCM cost more than I was looking to pay it is likely my last phono stage, which is why I was willing to spend the money!

Jasper, how is the Allnic? I listened to a low model in their range and it was magic on some music but not so good on other music. Can't remember the model number I listened to but I did think some of their better models might get it all right and that would be quite something.

DS

Link to post
Share on other sites

Running the SNA default option ATM. DL103/Nighthawk.

Also use Garrott Optim, Shure M75B.

Other phono stages CA640P. Built in MM/MC on my Yamaha AX400 and a super cheapie Jaycar when required.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Moderators

Onboard phono stage in my Linn Kairn preamp.

A synergistic solution that sounds good and has future upgrade options.

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30438[/ATTACH]

and Supex SDX-1000

[ATTACH=CONFIG]30440[/ATTACH]

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Recently Browsing   1 member




×
×
  • Create New...