Jump to content

kelossus

SUT or buy a new Phono?

Recommended Posts

Posted (edited)

I bought a new phono cart as I had an accident with my old one and it's out getting re-tipped. The replacement cart is a Windfeld TI (0.2mv, 7 ohm) and it's a very LOMC compared to my previous Zyx Airy 3 (0.48mv). I am getting a little more phono hiss then before and I am having to crank the volume way higher then I am used to. The volume increase coupled with the raised noise floor is an annoyance so I am contemplating either a new phono or a SUT.

 

My current phono stage is a Lehmann Silver Cube running at 66db of gain. Of interest to me is the Allnic phono stages which appear to have SUTs built in providing a max of 70db gain. I am unsure if a 4db boost will be enough. I am looking for at least 6 db.

 

Naturally I want to outlay as little money as possible off setting the sale of my current phono to cover the costs. Otherwise I outlay a little money for a SUT but everything I have been looking at costs around 2k. Will a SUT or a higher gain phono lower the increased noise floor?

 

Given the specs of my current cart and phono stage what ratio of step up would I require? I am new to SUT and am a little confused when it comes to matching. In the owners manual for the Windfeld TI they recommend the Ortofon ST80SE.

 

 

Edited by kelossus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Perhaps get on the  Graham Slee Loner program, they have a very good and flexable step up, sounded great in my system very neutral and quiet

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, kelossus said:

I bought a new phono cart as I had an accident with my old one and it's out getting re-tipped. The replacement cart is a Windfeld TI (0.2mv, 7 ohm) and it's a very LOMC compared to my previous Zyx Airy 3 (0.48mv). I am getting a little more phono hiss then before and I am having to crank the volume way higher then I am used to. The volume increase coupled with the raised noise floor is an annoyance so I am contemplating either a new phono or a SUT.

 

My current phono stage is a Lehmann Silver Cube running at 66db of gain. Of interest to me is the Allnic phono stages which appear to have SUTs built in providing a max of 70db gain. I am unsure if a 4db boost will be enough. I am looking for at least 6 db.

 

Naturally I want to outlay as little money as possible off setting the sale of my current phono to cover the costs. Otherwise I outlay a little money for a SUT but everything I have been looking at costs around 2k. Will a SUT or a higher gain phono lower the increased noise floor?

 

Given the specs of my current cart and phono stage what ratio of step up would I require? I am new to SUT and am a little confused when it comes to matching. In the owners manual for the Windfeld TI they recommend the Ortofon ST80SE.

 

 

You need SUT

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

But which SUT? If there is really nothing that would do my cart justice in the <2k price point I may be better off selling my phono and buying an all in one phono+sut like the Allnic.

Edited by kelossus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


if you play turntable with MC CARTRIDGE  must have SUT,  depend your budget... better quality better SUT give you better quality sound, low hum...

 

No matter how good your Phono preamp, expensive but not enough gain for you MC cartridge turn out bad sound...

 

SUT  start from 3ohm or lower than 3-10ohm.

 

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That Winfeld is very low output, as you know.

 

Were you using it before somehow?

 

Have to wonder about the wisdom of basing system decisions around a temp stand in cart of such low output.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You could look at DIY SUT.  I got Cinemag 1254 transformers of Geoff at Aurealis Audio and used it at 40x with my MM DIY Valve phonostage with no issues with 0.1mV Linn Asak..

 

The main cost in in the transformers and RCA connectors.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Personally I much prefer active phono stage than SUT's.   You really have to get a synergistic match to your cartridge, otherwise it's mush.    That said, SUT's generally go very well with tube phono stages and higher efficiency speakers.

   If were my $$, I would sell the Winfeld and get a higher output cartridge like Lyra Kleos / Delos or maybe higher up the totem pole of the ZYX range and keep your phono stage if you like it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Posted (edited)
55 minutes ago, eman said:

That Winfeld is very low output, as you know.

 

Were you using it before somehow?

 

Have to wonder about the wisdom of basing system decisions around a temp stand in cart of such low output.

Before purchasing I read the review from TAS where they mentioned running it perfectly with phono stages with 60 db gain, I doubt they had such demanding speakers as I which is certainly making things worse. I have often read the improvements of running a SUT into a phono stage so I wasn't deterred by the low output and was prepared to make the jump if required.

 

The Windfeld TI was not purchased with the intent of being a temporary cartridge. It was bought as an upgrade.

33 minutes ago, metal beat said:

Personally I much prefer active phono stage than SUT's.   You really have to get a synergistic match to your cartridge, otherwise it's mush.    That said, SUT's generally go very well with tube phono stages and higher efficiency speakers.

   If were my $$, I would sell the Winfeld and get a higher output cartridge like Lyra Kleos / Delos or maybe higher up the totem pole of the ZYX range and keep your phono stage if you like it.

That would hurt having to sell the Winfeld without giving it a proper go, it has crossed my mind though. When I bought the Zyx I had the Lyra Delos on hand and I much preferred the Zyx. Since then I have, maybe naively so, disregarded Lyra carts. I chose to stay away from Zyx this time around as they don't offer a re-tipping service.

 

 

Edited by kelossus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, kelossus said:

Before purchasing I read the review from TAS where they mentioned running it perfectly with phono stages with 60 db gain

 

Perhaps you should now take reviewers' opinions with a tablespoon of salt, Chris!  :lol:

 

60dB of gain is 1000x amplification.  So 0.2mV becomes 200mV - not a great output from a phono stage.  66dB gain is twice the output - and a 400mV signal level is an acceptable output from a phono stage.

 

33 minutes ago, kelossus said:

That would hurt having to sell the Winfeld without giving it a proper go, it has crossed my mind though. When I bought the Zyx I had the Lyra Delos on hand and I much preferred the Zyx. Since then I have, maybe naively so, disregarded Lyra carts. I chose to stay away from Zyx this time around as they don't offer a re-tipping service.

 

Re. ZYX - they kind-of offer a 're-tip' service ... as you can trade in your end-of-life ZYX for the latest version of that model.  I did this recently with my ZYX Airy3 (which was the LO version - at 0.24mV).  The replacement cart is a ZYX Ultimate Airy - also 0.24mV.

 

Andy

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
17 minutes ago, andyr said:

 

Perhaps you should now take reviewers' opinions with a tablespoon of salt, Chris!  :lol:

 

60dB of gain is 1000x amplification.  So 0.2mV becomes 200mV - not a great output from a phono stage.  66dB gain is twice the output - and a 400mV signal level is an acceptable output from a phono stage.

 

 

Re. ZYX - they kind-of offer a 're-tip' service ... as you can trade in your end-of-life ZYX for the latest version of that model.  I did this recently with my ZYX Airy3 (which was the LO version - at 0.24mV).  The replacement cart is a ZYX Ultimate Airy - also 0.24mV.

 

Andy

 

 

I agree, it is foolish to rely on reviews as this is likely to be system dependent. Even then in theory as you stated above 66db, which is what I have should be acceptable. Maybe not ideal though? I mean people using Ultra LOMC must rely on SUT or really high gain active phono's which are hard to come by. Most of the high end phono's have SUT's built in. I am just looking for guidance so I can overcome the issue at hand. Can I assume that 72db would again double the output providing 800mv? Am I correct to assume that 750mv Input Sensitivity of my linestage would be driven to full output with the 800mv? Is the current 400mv output from the phono only driving my preamp to roughly 50% gain? So many questions with such little understanding on my part.

 

I did look into Zyx's trade in options. Sometimes newer models aren't always better and I really dug the synergy of my Airy 3 in my system. I am sure the Ultimate Airy would have been excellent but spending 2.5-3k every time the stylus wears out is costly in the long term.

 

What does your phono setup include? The LO Airy is in the same ball park spec wise so I am interested.

Edited by kelossus

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, kelossus said:

Even then in theory as you stated above 66db, which is what I have should be acceptable.

 

Yes, it should, Chris.  Just for comparison ... I run my 0.24mV ZYX into one of my own 'Muse' phono stages - this happens to be configured for 60dB gain.  It's dead quiet - and I have enough gain in the rest of my system to play it as loud as I want.

 

Maybe your Lehmann Silver Cube works fine at 60dB gain (or below) ... but when you increase this to 66dB ... it produces an undesirable level of hiss?  In which case, yes, going back to 60dB gain (or less) on the 'Cube and using an external gain stage will be beneficial to you.  This external gain stage could be either:

  1. a SUT
  2. or a head amp (ie. an active gain stage).

I'm a fan of head amps, rather than SUTs - as they allow you more flexibility to choose the loading you use for your cart.

 

You said your Windfield has 7 ohm coils.  That says to me the optimum load will be anywhere between 70 ohms (10x) and 700 ohms (100x coil resistance).  Using a SUT does not allow you to play with such a wide variety of values.

 

Quote

Can I assume that 72db would again double the output providing 800mv?

 

Correct!  :thumb:

 

Quote

Am I correct to assume that 750mv Input Sensitivity of my linestage would be driven to full output with the 800mv?

 

In fact 800mV would drive it into clipping!  :(  So you would have to use your linestage's volume control to reduce the input signal to below 750mV.

 

But I suggest that, as a linestage generally has some gain ... even 750mV coming into it would send your power amp into clipping.  So you would use your linestage volume control to lower the input signal even more (so as not to send your amps into 'overdrive').  :)

 

Quote

Is the current 400mv output from the phono only driving my preamp to roughly 50% gain?

 

Kind of ... but you are using your volume control, right - so you are cutting back the phono stage signal to less than 400mV?  The linestage gain doesn't change with the volume control - simply the signal level that passes into the linestage.

 

Quote

I did look into Zyx's trade in options. Sometimes newer models aren't always better and I really dug the synergy of my Airy 3 in my system. I am sure the Ultimate Airy would have been excellent but spending 2.5-3k every time the stylus wears out is costly in the long term.

 

True - but the Ultimate Airy has turned out to be a significant upgrade on my Airy3!  :)

 

Quote

What does your phono setup include? The LO Airy is in the same ball park spec wise so I am interested.

 

I'm using the 'Ultimate Airy' into one of my 'Muse' MC phono stages.  As I said, the current one is configured for 60dB gain ... but I build it with up to 66dB gain.  If you'd like to hear one (and you're in Brissie) send me a PM and I can give you the name of my customer up there.

 

Also, if you're in Brisbane, you might be interested in trialing a head amp which I sent up to someone is Brisbane, to play with (to see whether using the 60dB setting on your Cube is quieter).  Actually, because of a problem he had with his integrated amp, I sent him 2 - he only needs 1!  :)  You might be able to pick it up - just PM me if you're interested.

 

What you might find sacreligious  :lol:  is that the output from my phono stage goes into an A2D converter - which then feeds the miniDSP unit which is at the heart of my system (providing 4-way active XOs and room EQ).

 

Andy

 

Edited by andyr

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


@kelossus, the ifi iphono2 for sale in the classifieds will give you 72db gain, i tried my brothers in my system but felt it overpowered unless you reduced it to 60db setting, using an Ortofon Quintet Blue MC, well reviewed unit

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So.... How go the Hashimoto transformers @kelossus ?

 

You sounded happy with them during the week. Are they growing on you still? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 hours ago, MattyW said:

So.... How go the Hashimoto transformers @kelossus ?

 

You sounded happy with them during the week. Are they growing on you still? 

Very much mate. I listened non stop for nearly 4 hours last night, for my standards that's a long session. I still haven't fired up the HM3 but I am interested in hearing how the 1:20 and 1:40 ratios would sound.

 

I use the 1:15 ratio for the most part but I prefer the loading of the 1:30. My phono has 100ohm loading options so I am trying to figure out if turning the phono loading on would somehow lower the overall loading.

 

Considering selling my phono stage still and buying a tube one. I don't have tube's in my analog chain at all and it saddens me.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 minutes ago, kelossus said:

 

I use the 1:15 ratio for the most part but I prefer the loading of the 1:30. My phono has 100ohm loading options so I am trying to figure out if turning the phono loading on would somehow lower the overall loading.

 

 

A 1:15 turns ratio gives you a loading of 209 ohms ... 1:30 gives you 52 ohms.

 

That's into a phono stage which has the default 47K loading.  If you select 100 ohms on your phono stage, the loading as seen by the cart will be:

  • 1:15 - 0.4 ohms.
  • 1:30 - 0.1 ohms.

 

I suspect selecting the 100 ohm load option might well burn out the coils on your cart?

 

Andy

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


3 minutes ago, andyr said:

 

A 1:15 turns ratio gives you a loading of 209 ohms ... 1:30 gives you 52 ohms.

 

That's into a phono stage which has the default 47K loading.  If you select 100 ohms on your phono stage, the loading as seen by the cart will be:

  • 1:15 - 0.4 ohms.
  • 1:30 - 0.1 ohms.

 

I suspect selecting the 100 ohm load option might well burn out the coils on your cart?

 

Andy

 

Jeez thank god you chimed in! That would have been devastating. What if I changed it to the MC section and added the 100 ohm loading.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 minute ago, kelossus said:

Jeez thank god you chimed in! That would have been devastating. What if I changed it to the MC section and added the 100 ohm loading.

 

An SUT needs to output to an MM input. Into MC, not only will the low impedance completely choke the output of your cart, but the voltage output from the SUT may overload and damage your MC input stage.

 

If you like the gain from 1:15 but want to bring the loading down to the level similar to the 1:30 loading, you can parallel load with a resistor either at the SUT output or phono stage (MM) input.

 

Here’s a site with some useful calculators:

 

http://www.mh-audio.nl/Calculators/StepUpTransformer.html

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I should add that there are SUTs that can be used into the MC input but these are usually at 1 to 2 ratio and would take your input impedance down from 100 Ohms to 25 Ohms.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd be outputting into the MM stage.  My MM phono has 65db gain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, MattyW said:

I'd be outputting into the MM stage.  My MM phono has 65db gain.

Very handy to have gain options on the MM input. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, kelossus said:

Jeez thank god you chimed in! That would have been devastating. What if I changed it to the MC section and added the 100 ohm loading.

 

Not quite - as Greg said:

 

1 hour ago, Doppelganger said:

An SUT needs to output to an MM input.

 

1 hour ago, Doppelganger said:

If you like the gain from 1:15 but want to bring the loading down to the level similar to the 1:30 loading, you can parallel load with a resistor either at the SUT output or phono stage (MM) input.

 

The easiest way of doing this is:

  1. buy a pair of RCA 'T' connectors from, eg, Jaycar.
  2. put these into the inputs of your phono stage.
  3. select MM / 47K on your phono stage.
  4. plug the outputs of your SUT into one of the inputs of each T' connector.
  5. plug 'loaded' RCA plugs into the other input.

You said you like the sound with the loading that 1:30 gives you.  This is 47,000 / 30^2  =  52 ohms.  The 1:15 SUT wants to 'see' a 11,700 ohm load, to produce 52 ohms (52 * 15^2  =  11,700).  You get this figure (approximately!) by using RCA plugs which have a 15K resistor soldered across them.  (This 15K acts in parallel with the phono stage's 47K.)

 

Andy

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, Doppelganger said:

Very handy to have gain options on the MM input. 

Mine has 36 or 46db of gain.

 

I think I will leave everything as is in regard to loading.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

Sorry,  my stage has 45db gain. Must have had a brain fart. Only 20db out. :(

 

Nonetheless,  it doesn't match with the Hashimoto transformers so if going tube it's not the way to go. A bit pricey at $3,400 + post. Lots of good tube stages about though not so many with a vanishingly low noise floor so some research to do.

 

I've heard good things about Tavish phono stages though. Not super pricey or anything either. Looks like there's room for improvement with it too as there's some Wima's in there. Not sure what the two OPAMPS on the circuit board are for.... Look like they're in the power section though.

 

https://tavishdesign.com/products/classic-vacuum-tube-phono-stage

 

I believe EAR have replaced the venerable 834P as well with the new stage getting some great reviews. Meant to be dead silent as well.

Edited by MattyW

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
35 minutes ago, kelossus said:

Mine has 36 or 46db of gain.

 

I think I will leave everything as is in regard to loading.

The 1:30 ratio means an output of 6mV which should be totally fine into your MM at 36 or 46dB. Definitely won’t overload the MM input and 36dB would be perfect so if you like the loading at that ratio, I’d just go with that. The 1:40 ratio will mean an 8mV output which is on the high side but should also be ok at the 36dB setting. Loading will drop to 29 Ohms so might darken the sound somewhat. 1:20 will give 4mV and a loading of 117 Ohms so possibly slightly brighter than the 1:30 ratio.

 

All part of the fun trying the different ratios and loads!👍

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


  • Classifieds Statistics


    Currently Active Ads

    Total Sales (Since 2018)

    Total Sales Value (Last 14 Days)

    Total Ads Value (Since March 2020)
  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...