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If I like the Garrott house sound what else would I like?

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1 hour ago, MattyW said:

Might be made by Super for all I know. Then again,  the only Super I didn't like was the SDX1000

That was the metal body,right?

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Posted (edited)
16 minutes ago, Wimbo said:

That was the metal body,right?

Nah, plastic body with a little red bead at the front to indicate where the needle is for alignment. I found it bright sounding.  Not a sound I'd ordinarily attribute to Supex carts.

Edited by MattyW

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Am chiming in quite late to this thread (just back in from Japan and now in home quarantine!) but Topshelf you originally asked for suggestions after your Garrott/Nagaoka MP500 carts. 

I owned both a Garrott Optim and an MP500 (which you actually bought from me!) and I was more than happy with both cartridges, before I decided to take a plunge on a Decca Gold.

The Decca just plays music better to my ears, it sounds more dynamic, more real and more like the live gigs I hope to revisit once this crisis abates and we get back to normal life again!

I imagine I too would also enjoy a Stanton cart, but if you ever have a chance to audition or listen to a Decca I would highly recommend you give it a go!

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On 24/03/2020 at 9:21 PM, SETfan said:

Am chiming in quite late to this thread (just back in from Japan and now in home quarantine!) but Topshelf you originally asked for suggestions after your Garrott/Nagaoka MP500 carts. 

I owned both a Garrott Optim and an MP500 (which you actually bought from me!) and I was more than happy with both cartridges, before I decided to take a plunge on a Decca Gold.

The Decca just plays music better to my ears, it sounds more dynamic, more real and more like the live gigs I hope to revisit once this crisis abates and we get back to normal life again!

I imagine I too would also enjoy a Stanton cart, but if you ever have a chance to audition or listen to a Decca I would highly recommend you give it a go!

Hi a bit late to reply here to your info.

   I did love the MP500 and now wish I had kept it. Not the last word in detail but sounds really nice and polite a bit like most things Japanese.

  I recently picked up a pair of original D81 stylus for the Stanton 881s it really is a good sounding cart with heaps of bass, wide open soundstage and a great punch with a detailed sparkling top end. I'm really happy I have that cart up and running again.

   It's really interesting you mention the Decca gold as it's a cart that keeps coming up whilst researching some of the carts I like and have heard.

  I'm now torn between a Dynavector and the Decca, I like your thoughts on the life like sound of the Decca. If a cart can pull this off without sounding shouty then I am all ears.

   I'd love to hear your thoughts on this cart if you get time?

Thanks for the reply and keep safe.

Cheers Ian.

    

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18 minutes ago, TOPSHELF said:

Hi a bit late to reply here to your info.

   I did love the MP500 and now wish I had kept it. Not the last word in detail but sounds really nice and polite a bit like most things Japanese.

  I recently picked up a pair of original D81 stylus for the Stanton 881s it really is a good sounding cart with heaps of bass, wide open soundstage and a great punch with a detailed sparkling top end. I'm really happy I have that cart up and running again.

   It's really interesting you mention the Decca gold as it's a cart that keeps coming up whilst researching some of the carts I like and have heard.

  I'm now torn between a Dynavector and the Decca, I like your thoughts on the life like sound of the Decca. If a cart can pull this off without sounding shouty then I am all ears.

   I'd love to hear your thoughts on this cart if you get time?

Thanks for the reply and keep safe.

Cheers Ian.

    

Watching this thread with interest.

 

@TOPSHELF

Which Dynavector are you thinking of Ian?

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18 minutes ago, Ahh- Schnoo Schnoo said:

Watching this thread with interest.

 

@TOPSHELF

Which Dynavector are you thinking of Ian?

To be honest I don't really know which one it could be. It's more I have a budget in mind so this would dictate this.

  I've had some really positive experiences buying used carts so I would be keeping an eye out in the used market over the next few months.

  I also have to consider the current and ever changing economic environment so purchasing anything could change....... 

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I've been reading the Garrott brothers rebuilt the Decca Gold back in the day. By all accounts a tad temperamental but get it right and they sound very good.

  I'd love to hear from any members who have one or remember them.

Cheers,

Ian.

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Hi Ian,

Back when I owned the MP500 and was reading lots of good things about Decca carts, I found a guy online who owned both.

His email below convinced me to take the Decca plunge and sell the MP500:

 

"Hi Mark,
I like my Grado a lot, but it is not detailed, but the mids are fine. The MP500 is well balanced, but the difference with a Decca (in a good system) is hifi ends and live starts. Best explanation again I stress good hifi is the Decca difference is that "oh my god" edged of your seat difference. There is nothing wrong with what an mp500 does, but with the right gear a Decca you are almost there live."

 

I never got to directly compare the two carts, but can agree that the Decca is more musically enjoyable to my ears. It has amazing dynamics, and just sounds more exciting and like live music to me also.

However, the Decca sound is not for everyone - it is possibly not quite as detailed as the MP500, maybe the bass is not as tight or defined, maybe its not a smooth or crystalline sounding for some...but for my ears its perfect!

 

A mate of mine uses Koetsu Rosewood for his main cart, and also owns a Garrott Decca. He has heard and owned a LOT of carts in his time, and he also rates the Decca's as something special and has no intention of ever selling.

 

They are fairly rudimentary (quite tinny really), but if you are not fussed by appearance I would certainly recommend that you try and get to hear a Decca one day so you can form your own opinion.

Hope this helps!

Cheers

Mark

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1 hour ago, SETfan said:

Hi Ian,

Back when I owned the MP500 and was reading lots of good things about Decca carts, I found a guy online who owned both.

His email below convinced me to take the Decca plunge and sell the MP500:

 

"Hi Mark,
I like my Grado a lot, but it is not detailed, but the mids are fine. The MP500 is well balanced, but the difference with a Decca (in a good system) is hifi ends and live starts. Best explanation again I stress good hifi is the Decca difference is that "oh my god" edged of your seat difference. There is nothing wrong with what an mp500 does, but with the right gear a Decca you are almost there live."

 

I never got to directly compare the two carts, but can agree that the Decca is more musically enjoyable to my ears. It has amazing dynamics, and just sounds more exciting and like live music to me also.

However, the Decca sound is not for everyone - it is possibly not quite as detailed as the MP500, maybe the bass is not as tight or defined, maybe its not a smooth or crystalline sounding for some...but for my ears its perfect!

 

A mate of mine uses Koetsu Rosewood for his main cart, and also owns a Garrott Decca. He has heard and owned a LOT of carts in his time, and he also rates the Decca's as something special and has no intention of ever selling.

 

They are fairly rudimentary (quite tinny really), but if you are not fussed by appearance I would certainly recommend that you try and get to hear a Decca one day so you can form your own opinion.

Hope this helps!

Cheers

Mark

Hi Mark,

That helps alot thanks for sharing. They really are an ugly and yes rudimentary looking cart they could have bern made by matchbox or Hornby. I know by looking at my P77i to never judge by looks alone.

   The Garrott brothers were clearly very skilled in their craft and the price for a rebuilt cart back in the day almost cheap.

   I've seen a few pop up here from time to time so i will wait and see what the future holds.

  Can anyone comment on the reliability of these carts? The string/wire holding the stylus at the correct sra seems to fly in the face of precision, how does one know it has stretched or moved? I get why they are made this way and it makes sense and probably adds to it's signature of sounding live and dynamic.

  I have essentially a unipivot arm with adjustable damping on the WTA and by all accounts could be a good match for a Decca Gold, question is now old or new? Garrott or Decca?

I see more investigation is needed..... And of course some helpful advice here.

 

    

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Sorry, never heard the Koetsu so cant comment (but its reputation is quite spectacular).

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7 minutes ago, SETfan said:

Sorry, never heard the Koetsu so cant comment (but its reputation is quite spectacular).

OK yeah I've heard it's pretty good, just wanted another opinion.

 

Thanks anyway for your response 👍

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I've a vintage (gold pin) Koetsu Rosewood. Not the most detailed cart though I'd describe it as incredibly rich sounding and holographic. Not the deepest bass in the world though there's quite a lot of it. The closest cart I've run in sound signature to it was a wood bodied Grado. Certainly quite a coloured cartridge though beautiful to listen to. That said I enjoy the Supex SD900 Super more than it.... Didn't like the SD900 Rosewood so much.

 

I made the mistake of selling my SD900 Super to a mate cheap to get him into MC's though his setup wasn't really able to get the best from it. So I've a SD900 Super-II on the way with broken cantilever that I picked up cheap. Will have to get a retip done.

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If anyone gets a 'Decca', it has to be a Garrott Decca. Decca were notorious for inconsistency out of the factory....you could get an excellent one or a dog. Garrotts turned them into perfection.

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Hi Everyone,

Loving the comments about all the carts here.

   Hi Steve I've read the Garrott Decca is the one to look out for but they would be a bit old in the tooth by now?

  I also read they possibly dampened the cart in some way which removed some of the dynamics the current Decca Golds are known for this apparently smoothed the top end out.

  If the GDG is a good step up from the P77i i'd really like to hear one i think @fullrange has one but not sure about a P77i?

   Keep the comments coming gents.....

Cheers Ian.

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, stevoz said:

If anyone gets a 'Decca', it has to be a Garrott Decca. Decca were notorious for inconsistency out of the factory....you could get an excellent one or a dog. Garrotts turned them into perfection.

Yeah,  I found that out the hard way with a blue, a maroon and a grey. All were disappointing two had hum issues and the third sounded pseudo mono.

Edited by MattyW

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3 hours ago, TOPSHELF said:

Hi Everyone,

Loving the comments about all the carts here.

   Hi Steve I've read the Garrott Decca is the one to look out for but they would be a bit old in the tooth by now?

  I also read they possibly dampened the cart in some way which removed some of the dynamics the current Decca Golds are known for this apparently smoothed the top end out.

  If the GDG is a good step up from the P77i i'd really like to hear one i think @fullrange has one but not sure about a P77i?

   Keep the comments coming gents.....

Cheers Ian.

At the time, the Garrott Decca London Gold was arguably the best sounding cartridge in the world. If you wanted to be entertained and blown off your seat when you played a decent recording, this was the cartridge. The P77 paled into insignificance compared to it. The only problem was its reliability.

 https://www.kenkessler.com/hi-fi/garrott-decca-cartridge/

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On 13/03/2020 at 9:24 AM, Mat-with-one-t said:

I’ve had Similar cart’s.  I have really been enjoying a Denon 103r with a wood body.  Really nice!  

What do the different letters mean on the Denon's I've seen M , R, Oct, etc I mean what ? If you know please fill me in . 

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Fair question if any one knows.

  Well I pulled the pin on a couple of D81 stylus for the Stanton and have managed to try them both out. Looks like my gamble errrr failed. Something just doesn't sound right so back to the old P77i whilst I save up for a Decca.

  What I will try tomorrow is a Technics U205C MK3 which has been sitting in a cupboard for too long. Can't remember where it came from and remember it sounding nice on the WTA classic.

   Anyone heard one? Apparently gets a few nice reviews for the hollow boron cantilever and laser attached stylus tip?

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I managed to find a Garrott Bros P77i with extremely low hours, got it for what I consider a great price.  Just waiting for it to arrive 😀

Being very happy with Garrott Bros FGS Optim on my Music Hall 9.1 this thread got me quite interested in the P77i. 

 

My 2nd table is a Technics SL1200mkii which I rotate carts through (as its so easy to do). 

Once the P77i arrives i'll set it up and give listen, it will require burn in still as its less than 10hrs old and i'll work on the same principle of the FGS with its tail slightly up.  If its as good as people in this thread and below attachment state and in the line of the FGS I think I'll be very pleased.

 

I found this thread also from years ago which might add to this great thread..

 

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9 hours ago, 08Boss302 said:

I managed to find a Garrott Bros P77i with extremely low hours, got it for what I consider a great price.  Just waiting for it to arrive 😀

Being very happy with Garrott Bros FGS Optim on my Music Hall 9.1 this thread got me quite interested in the P77i. 

 

My 2nd table is a Technics SL1200mkii which I rotate carts through (as its so easy to do). 

Once the P77i arrives i'll set it up and give listen, it will require burn in still as its less than 10hrs old and i'll work on the same principle of the FGS with its tail slightly up.  If its as good as people in this thread and below attachment state and in the line of the FGS I think I'll be very pleased.

 

I found this thread also from years ago which might add to this great thread..

 

Thanks for sharing and we look forward to your experience with the P77i  cart. 

I tried the technics out today and it was pretty good and somewhere near the Shure cart from last week maybe a tad warmer so probably better if some body in the sound is what you like. 

I actually think the suspension may have gone on this one too as at 1.50g it was riding very low to the record. 

   It may be time to move some bodies on to fund the Decca?

   

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Incidentally, as it's not on any literature I can find re the GB range, would/are most of you running 100pf or 220pf capacitive loading?

 

I'm purely wondering as there is no manufacturers spec I can find where on most other carts provide the carts capacitive loading spec.

 

I think the "rule" is start as low as possible.  For my FGS Optim I'm currently at 220pf but am going to lower to 100pf this arvo and see if there is any noticeable difference.  Many suggest there isn't so I'll see...

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32 minutes ago, 08Boss302 said:

Incidentally, as it's not on any literature I can find re the GB range, would/are most of you running 100pf or 220pf capacitive loading?

 

I'm purely wondering as there is no manufacturers spec I can find where on most other carts provide the carts capacitive loading spec.

 

I think the "rule" is start as low as possible.  For my FGS Optim I'm currently at 220pf but am going to lower to 100pf this arvo and see if there is any noticeable difference.  Many suggest there isn't so I'll see...

Yes please post results, interested what you find 👍

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