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TheLostArk

Distorted high frequencies

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G'day from Germany!

I'm afraid this is kind of a newbie thing but I don't seem to be able to solve this issue and need some help. Everytime I play a record, the high frequencies sound really distorted, almost like a shriek. My cartridge is a Denon DL 103, and in general I'm really happy with the way it sounds, very clear and dynamic. If only there wouldn't be these annoying high frequencies. I'm not sure if this has to do with my tonearm set up, I was pretty sure I did it all correct and very accurately.

 

Here's my equipment:

TT: Thorens TD 124/II
Tonearm: SME 3009/II (non-improved) incl. two rider weights

Headshell: Ortofon G Type

Cartridge: Denon DL 103
Stylus pressure: 2,5g (I also tried 3,0g, didn't really sound differently)
Template: SME

Step up transformer: Denon AU-320
Amplifier: Pioneer SM-G204
Speakers: I've only used headphones so far

 

Like I said, the sound would be great if it wasn't for the shrieking high frequencies. When I start playing albums like AC/DC's "HIghway To Hell" or Thin Lizzy's "Jailbreak" it becomes really annoying, especially the guitar solos. The worst part was the guitar solo in Thin Lizzy's "Emerald", right at the end of the second side. I'm not sure if the problem becomes worse the nearer the tonearm gets to the middle, but it's definitely there from the first minute on each side.

 

I played both records on another turntable - sounded just fine.

 

What might be problem here? Can it be the amplifier as well?

 

Thanks guys!

Dennis

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The SME is not a great match for the Denon (or any moving coil, for that matter). You would do much better with a Rega RB300. It is possible that the cartridge has a chipped stylus, or requires more careful set-up. You could try a modestly priced MM cart, as the SME is far more suited to that type of cartridge. A Shure M97XE is reasonably priced and an excellent performer. 

 

BTW: When you hear the annoying high frequencies, that indicates irreparable damage to the LP. I suggest you solve the problem before playing valuable LPs. 

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The SME is not a great match for the Denon (or any moving coil, for that matter). You would do much better with a Rega RB300. It is possible that the cartridge has a chipped stylus, or requires more careful set-up. You could try a modestly priced MM cart, as the SME is far more suited to that type of cartridge. A Shure M97XE is reasonably priced and an excellent performer. 

 

BTW: When you hear the annoying high frequencies, that indicates irreparable damage to the LP. I suggest you solve the problem before playing valuable LPs. 

 

Thank you. Hm, bummer. I was told the Denon 103 would work fine with the heavier SME's such as mine. It's a series II uniimproved.

Edited by TheLostArk

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Thank you. Hm, bummer. I was told the Denon 103 would work fine with the heavier SME's such as mine. It's a series II unimproved.

 

I'm not an expert with SME arms but @@djb has an SME 3012 which I installed on his SkeletaLinn, which works terrifically well with his (MM) Grado Reference Master.  (Therefore, it will work just as well with any other cart in the Grado wood-bodied range.)

 

So you might like to investigate replacing your D103 with a Grado wood-bodied.

 

 

Regards,

 

Andy

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@@TheLostArk there are stretchable parameters with cart specs

While I bow to Anys expertise he and I found that an Audio technica cart we fitted to the other arm on this tt performed flawlessly despite failing the spec test

Haven't read the whole thread but if the 103 is yours and out of box and not returnable give it a go

Blue tac and a 5c coin can do wonders on a head shell

If it's too heavy though I don't have answers

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I'd suggest checking the geometry of your tonearm pivot to spindle distance. Perhaps the original owner did not install the arm properly and no matter what you do to align the cartridge you never get it quite right because the geometry is all wrong.

Remember to align your cartridge looking at the cantilever not the body of the cartridge. Who cares what the body is doing, its the cantilever and stylus which must be properly aligned.

Since you say the records play OK on another record player, I also suggest your actual stylus might be worn or damaged. Get a microscope and inspect it before playing other records.

Edited by eltech

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I had something similar and put it down to overloading the phono stage. 

Could be the signal is too strong using the SUT to your amplifier?

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The SME is not a great match for the Denon (or any moving coil, for that matter). You would do much better with a Rega RB300. It is possible that the cartridge has a chipped stylus, or requires more careful set-up. You could try a modestly priced MM cart, as the SME is far more suited to that type of cartridge. A Shure M97XE is reasonably priced and an excellent performer.

BTW: When you hear the annoying high frequencies, that indicates irreparable damage to the LP. I suggest you solve the problem before playing valuable LPs.

While I agree that an mm cart like the Shure V15 is a superb match for this arm, I will say that I have heard MC carts like a Denon DL304 and an Audio Technica AT33 PTG on these arms and they worked and sounded very well.

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On 23/04/2015 at 7:19 PM, TheLostArk said:

G'day from Germany!

I'm afraid this is kind of a newbie thing but I don't seem to be able to solve this issue and need some help. Everytime I play a record, the high frequencies sound really distorted, almost like a shriek. My cartridge is a Denon DL 103, and in general I'm really happy with the way it sounds, very clear and dynamic. If only there wouldn't be these annoying high frequencies. I'm not sure if this has to do with my tonearm set up, I was pretty sure I did it all correct and very accurately.

 

Here's my equipment:

TT: Thorens TD 124/II
Tonearm: SME 3009/II (non-improved) incl. two rider weights

Headshell: Ortofon G Type

Cartridge: Denon DL 103
Stylus pressure: 2,5g (I also tried 3,0g, didn't really sound differently)
Template: SME

Step up transformer: Denon AU-320
Amplifier: Pioneer SM-G204
Speakers: I've only used headphones so far

 

Like I said, the sound would be great if it wasn't for the shrieking high frequencies. When I start playing albums like AC/DC's "HIghway To Hell" or Thin Lizzy's "Jailbreak" it becomes really annoying, especially the guitar solos. The worst part was the guitar solo in Thin Lizzy's "Emerald", right at the end of the second side. I'm not sure if the problem becomes worse the nearer the tonearm gets to the middle, but it's definitely there from the first minute on each side.

 

I played both records on another turntable - sounded just fine.

 

What might be problem here? Can it be the amplifier as well?

 

Thanks guys!

Dennis

Hi

have u solved the problem? I have the same setup as yours except I have a  sme 3012 with the same Ortofon headshell. I installed my brand new 103 and it is having a distorted high atm. Could it be the Denon SUT? Or arm alignment problem? Do let me know if you have solved the problem .many thanks 

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