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Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

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Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dustbowl » 26 Apr 2012 01:09

Hello,
I am new to the forum, and still relatively new to vinyl. I just got my first nice table, a Technics SL-M3, and it came with two cartridges that I know very little about. I was hoping some of you might know about these two carts. I think I have read that the 92e is not a very good cartridge, though I figured I would ask. Has anyone had any experience with the 450? the stylus is gone on it, so would it be worth replacing? if not, what would be a good choice for a replacement cartridge (its a P Mount)?
Thanks!
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dlaloum » 26 Apr 2012 02:32

MMM very yummy turntable....

The Shure M92e is the most basic bottom of the line p-mount cartridge from Shure.

BUT - the body is the same as the M97xE, and some earlier higher end models like the M97HE. The difference between the bottom of the line version (M92e) and the top of the line versions (M111HE, M97HE) is mostly just the stylus.

You can therefore upgrade the M92e very very easily by simply swapping the stylus.

The best needle currently available for it is the Jico SAS.... but here is a wide collection of choices:
First the traditional p-mount format styli
http://www.turntableneedles.com/search. ... &search=GO

Then the ones with the damping brush - back in the day, the top p-mount shure cartridges had the damping brush too (eg: M111HE, M105E) - with the damping brush styli you need an arm that has adjustable VTF which is not the case for all p-mount arms, but your SL-M3 is one of the very best... and is fully adjustable!
http://www.turntableneedles.com/search. ... &search=GO

On a budget, fit the N97xE stylus
http://www.turntableneedles.com/Needle- ... _1479.html
or the Jico stylus
http://www.turntableneedles.com/M99E-SH ... _1448.html
(I have one of these it is very good...)

Going up the range, you can fit a line contact stylus - these basically get better high frequency response, with reduced wear on both stylus and record...
http://www.turntableneedles.com/N110HE- ... _1450.html

The top of the line is the Jico SAS - the stylus is even finer with a longer line contact, so it makes contact with the groove along a vertical line rather than a spot, this spreads the tracking force across a wider area and also often reads both above an below the wear patches left by more ordinary styli on used records.
In addition (more importantly actually) the cantilever is made of boron - it is ultra light and rigid - lightness means less inertia and better high frequency response and tracking - this is a very very good stylus (at a price...)
http://www.turntableneedles.com/JICO-SA ... _3953.html


Now looking at your AT450, this body is identical to the current AT92
http://www.turntableneedles.com/search. ... &search=GO
Much like the Shure this has been sold under a wide range of differing names/numbers and even under different brands, the difference between them was only ever the styli...
Again you can go from basic conical through various grades of eliptical, to the line contact types:
http://www.turntableneedles.com/search. ... &search=GO

With those two cartridges, you have substantial options - ranging from the ordinary to the extr-ordinary.... and there is something there for every budget and aspiration!

Hope this helps

bye for now

David
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby lini » 27 Apr 2012 20:02

David: Me thinks he was asking about the AT92E(CD) rather than the M92E... :)

db: Actually the AT92E(CD) isn't that bad at all, especially for its low price (over in the US usually ~ 20 to 30 bucks). The AT450 is from the same family (AT3472), but has only got an entry-level spherical needle - so it's comparable to the AT90(CD), while the ATN3472SE on the AT92E(CD) already is a medium sharp, bonded elliptical (and separately usually more expensive than the complete AT92E(CD)). However, for your SL-M3 neither of these two would seem classy enough. So, if you'd like to stick to Audio Technica, I'd rather suggest you to look for a used AT102P family body and put on at least a new old stock original ATN132EP needle (which sports a high quality, nude diamond with rectangular shank and sharp elliptical tip on tapered alu cantilever).

Greetings from Munich!

Manfred / lini
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dustbowl » 29 Apr 2012 07:43

Gentlemen,
Thank you very much for the replies. I am leaning towards outright replacing the cartridge. Neither of the AT's sound very good to me (it could be due to wear and tear, hard to be sure), especially compared to the Grado prestige green I have on another table. Based on my research, I think I will replace it with an Ortofon 2M Blue. Do any of you have any experience with this cart? My audio guy says its excellent, and the reviews are quite good. Let me know what you guys think.
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby Balifly » 29 Apr 2012 08:01

dustbowl wrote:Gentlemen,
Thank you very much for the replies. I am leaning towards outright replacing the cartridge. Neither of the AT's sound very good to me (it could be due to wear and tear, hard to be sure), especially compared to the Grado prestige green I have on another table. Based on my research, I think I will replace it with an Ortofon 2M Blue. Do any of you have any experience with this cart? My audio guy says its excellent, and the reviews are quite good. Let me know what you guys think.


The Technics SL-M3 only uses P-mount - T4P cartridges, correct?

Ortofon 2M Blue is not a P-mount cartridges.
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dustbowl » 29 Apr 2012 08:10

It is true that the SL-M3 is a p mount, but I thought that ortofon made a p mount 2m blue. Is that not the case?
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dlaloum » 29 Apr 2012 08:32

There are no p-mounts in the ortofon 2M range.

The nearest equivalents from Ortofon are the OMP20 (which is very nice by the way!)
Also the 320u, and the 520p (the 5xx pmount series have been discontinued but can sometimes still be found)

The sleeper in all this is the Digitrac 300SE, which was made by Ortofon for Digitrac (a company that no longer exists) - and is basically an OM30 p-mount. (equivalent to the Bronze in the 2M range)

Very good value! - But you need to search for someone that still has stock of these - they were still relatively available a year back... now I know that William Thakker in Germany still has them, but I don't know of any other stockist.

Hope that Helps

bye for now

David
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby Balifly » 29 Apr 2012 23:32

dustbowl wrote:It is true that the SL-M3 is a p mount, but I thought that ortofon made a p mount 2m blue. Is that not the case?


As dlaloum had state, there is no P-mount in the Ortofon 2M line up.

Have a look into the Technics EPC 23 ,24 .....or other similar cartridges in the line up.

Fit one of those cartridge with a HE-hyper elliptical or SAS stylus.

The result may be comparable or even surpass the Ortofon 2M Blue. :)

Dlaloum knows a lot more about this. :D
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dlaloum » 29 Apr 2012 23:43

Yep that would be a great combo I rekon.... (Technics EPC202/22/23/24/28/33 with SAS) - but may require custom cartridge loading to adjust....

It is the Techics version of my M92E + SAS recomendation.
Possibly superior to the M92e combo, as the cartridge body uses laminated pole pieces...

The only downside is the time spent on ebay tracking a cartridge body down!
(where the M92e is available new, at relatively economical prices)

Thanks Lini - yes there are 2 x 92e's from different brands! M92e from Shure and AT92E from Audio Technica - both are p-mount, both are budget cartridges, and both are surprisingly good, and upgradable with stylus replacements...
The AT92E tends to max out a little lower in performance due to the lack of a SAS equivalent stylus - although the now rare ML stylus for the AT92 may compete with the SAS...

bye for now

David
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby james73_2008 » 30 Apr 2012 02:29

Did someone mention the AT450??? 8)

Image

Image


Meet (a small part of) the family...

Image


James H
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby lini » 30 Apr 2012 03:15

No, James - in this case we're talking about the AT450 of the AT3472 family, not the AT450E(/OCC) of the AT120 family. But I still like your pics.... :)

Grinnings from Munich!

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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dlaloum » 30 Apr 2012 04:00

Nice family photos!
And a very tasty family it is!

What you need to add to that series is the p-mount cousins... (I might have to take some pics...)
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby lini » 30 Apr 2012 04:25

Btw, something I haven't noticed before: James' ATN120E has got a white damper ring, while both my older and my newer exemplar have the usual gray ones. Interesting...

David: I could contribute red (ATN432EP), orange (ATN132EP) and black (ATN152LP) - and for halfinch-mount in addition matte black (ATN150E). ;)

Greetings from Munich!

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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby dustbowl » 30 Apr 2012 19:33

Wow, thanks for all the advice everyone. I have been eyeing the Digitrac... its relatively cheap compared to what it is. James and Lini - How do you like the AT's? the 92e I have on it now is not much to my liking, but it is also cheap and possible worn out (since it came with the unit). I want to get a cart that will last and that i will not be wanting to upgrade in 6 months.
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Re: Audio Technica AT92e and AT450

Postby lini » 01 May 2012 01:05

db: I like all my ATs, though many need a very low load capacity for best performance. However, I prefer the T4P/P-Mount siblings of the AT120 family, i.e. the models of the AT102P family, especially as one can still get pretty high quality original needles for these.

But if you want your cart to be future-proof, the best idea might be to look for a used OMP body and combine it with a new needle 20 or 30, 'cause the stock of remaining Digitracs won't last forever, while the needles for the OM(B)s and OMPs (as well as the SuperOMs, LMs, Hifi Concordes...) aren't going to be discontinued anytime soon...

Greetings from Munich!

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