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Jaba

Cartridge and phono stage

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Hi Guys

Currently using Ortofon 2M Red with Rega MM phono stage and I feel that it sounds uneventful.

Previously used same cartridge with Yaqin MS 12-B connected directly to power amp and it felt more dynamic with superior sound stage.

There was a nuisance fiddling with the cables every time I wanted to listen to turntable hence tried Rega MM for convenience.

Now I am thinking about upgrading phono stage and possibly cartridge to match to achieve optimal outcome.

Wife will have to approve the budget so no specific amount has been set but would like to keep it around $1K to $1.5K in total.

Would be grateful to hear your suggestions.

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Posted (edited)

As always (and in that budget range), I'll put a word in for the excellent 'bang for your buck' Vincent PHO-8 phono stage (with separate power supply). Very dynamic and not short on detail, a really tonally balanced phono for both MC and MM. At around $400, it's a beauty.👌

 

Leaves you with plenty for another cart.😉

 

Image result for vincent pho-8

 

 

Edited by stevoz

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Posted (edited)

Sorry, I don't quite understand your setup, J.

 

The Yaqin MS 12-B is a tube preamp with an included MM phono stage.  Downstream of the MS 12-B was your power amp.

 

So why did this arrangement require you to "fiddle with cables" every time you want to listen to vinyl?  I would've thought:

  • the phono cable from the TT plugged into the phono stage inputs on the MS 12-B
  • the MS 12-B outputs plugged into your power amp?

What cable fiddling was required?

 

Bu, yes, the Rega MM phono stage is a "very average" performer!  :(

 

Andy

 

Edited by andyr

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Hi Andy,

My power amp has balanced and RCA inputs.

To listen to turntable I had to get behind the power amp and manually plug in RCA cables from Yaquin.

This bypasses balanced inputs which is where my other preamp (and digital sources) feeds into.

Obviously to get back to other sources this had to be reversed.

For some reason Yaquin does not work to well as a phono stage when connected with the other preamp.

Hence I am thinking upgrade phono stage and get new cartridge to match.

 

Steve - which cartridge would you suggest I should try with Vincent?

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I have a Vincent PHO-8 and have used it with the following carts:

Presently Van den Hul DDT II special.

Audio Technica OC9/III

Garrott K2

Shure V15 type III with Jico SAS/SS stylus.

Nagaoka MP11

 

Great Phono stage for the money

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Posted (edited)

The HiFi VinylNews channel on youtube claims that the Schitt Mani performs better than the Vincent.  I have the Mani hooked up to a Swagman PSU and it performs very well for me, however, I have not conducted a detailed comparison for myself.

 

 

Edited by nkoulban

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Hi @Jaba

 

A shameless plug for the Phono I have for sale, VG++ to excellent condition and well within your price bracket

 

and there is a Hana cartridge in the classifieds that matches well with the phono as I have used both together

 

 

JJ

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Posted (edited)
On 15/03/2020 at 9:08 AM, Jaba said:

Steve - which cartridge would you suggest I should try with Vincent?

I think @Batty has it covered with a nice selection but I use Grace carts mainly and they also sound wonderful through the Vincent. Currently using my Level II RC but all my Grace carts sound great through it. Also, the Denon DL103 sounds very nice with the PHO-8.👍

 

F8's turn up on ebay fairly regularly at affordable prices but are almost impossible to find genuine styli for.....but the legendary F9's are more feasible due to Soundsmith replacement styli.....but here is an F8L with genuine Grace stylus for under $300:

 

https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/Grace-F-8-MM-cartridge/233528137376?hash=item365f5c96a0:g:f7MAAOSwD75ebmRV

Edited by stevoz

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Many thanks everyone.

Still processing info and options.

I guess the next step is to decide between MM and MC.

 

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Posted (edited)

I'd suggest this Abbas Audio phono stage. The equivalent SW1X phono stage based on this circuit is the LPU I: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/abbasaudio-Hi-fi-RIAA-Tube-Preamp-MM-assembled-NEW-EF86-5687-EZ35/362931990495?hash=item54806eafdf:g:VfIAAOSwTBReXRng

 

And a good ol Stanton 681. They still rather hard to beat for the price: https://www.ebay.com.au/itm/STANTON-681EEE-Phono-Cartridge-and-D6800EEE-Stylus-with-Brush-and-Original-Box/184190399950?hash=item2ae29a75ce:g:d-0AAOSwT6ld04i6

 

I now believe in spending more on the phono stage than the cart as it seems to get better results.... Of sourse a top end cart + a top phono stage gives even better results. Just costs more . Besides,  the Stanton 681/Pickering XV-15 is an excellent cart. :)

Edited by MattyW

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