Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

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Lizard_King
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Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Lizard_King » 28 Aug 2018 02:51

I use a TD 160 MK 1 with some work and the stock TP 16 tonearm.ninhave been using a GRADO TLZ MI Cartrdge that was NOS when I got it. I get really nice minds albeit a little forward and ok LF and HFs. I do get a hum which I believe is from the cartridge not being shielded.

And am looking to pick up a Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm. I m looking at the Audio Technical SH750 MM Cartridge with Sibata stylus. I am told this cartridge will work well with both Tonearms.

I do believe the Super is better and the SME Series III S Tonearm is a big difference maker.

I welcome your responses. Your assistance I greatly appreciated.

Liz

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by bernard1 » 29 Aug 2018 11:16

SME series III was designed to match high compliance carts, such as Shure V15 IV, at the time.
Specs for AT VM750SH are : Dynamic Compliance: 10 x 10-6 cm/dyne (100 Hz)
That should match the SME.
The SME series III S was sold without damper tank. But you can add one later and choose the right paddle according to the cart compliance. It should be the grey one for the VM750SH.
Does you seller has the complete set of lead weight ? It's usefull to make the best combination in the counterweight. (See the Sme manual in the library).

The TD 160 super + SME series III is a very good match : it's one of mine since 1982 !

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Lizard_King » 30 Aug 2018 04:35

Thanks so much. The tot is from a good friend of mine who hasn’t used it in years. I will have to take a look at it soon. Any other advise you can offer.

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Lizardking » 02 Sep 2018 00:33

I saw the TT lat night. The top is removable which I have not seen before. The RCA phono outputs are on the bottom of the tonearm so you have to remove the op to connect them. Is your setup this way? Will the cable be damaged by this in your opinion?
Lizard_King wrote:Thanks so much. The TT is from a good friend of mine who hasn’t used it in years. I will have to take a look at it soon. Any other advise you can offer.

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Sunwire » 02 Sep 2018 01:58

You shouldn't need to remove the top of the turntable.
The bottom comes off and that's where you get access to the tonearm/cable connectors.

I have a TD-160 Super and an SME 3009III, but they are not used together. I think it would be an excellent match, however.

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Lizardking » 02 Sep 2018 02:27

Are there holes in the bottom so the cables go go threw them?

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by bernard1 » 02 Sep 2018 09:54

Lizardking wrote:Are there holes in the bottom so the cables go go threw them?
Yes, as you can see on this picture :
TD160S2.JPG

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by bernard1 » 02 Sep 2018 10:17

Lizardking wrote:The top is removable which I have not seen before.
As Sunwire says, you don't have to remove the top for maintenance, but the bottom, by unscrewing four screws.
Lizardking wrote:The RCA phono outputs are on the bottom of the tonearm so you have to remove the op to connect them. Is your setup this way? Will the cable be damaged by this in your opinion?
Here is a picture of my table with the connection of the rca cables on the arm base :
TD160S1.JPG
I use flexible leads between the arm base and the rca cable. Those flexible leads were not provided with the arm but sold as an option. They are intended to help arm to move freely on the Thorens suspended chassis.
You can connect the rca cable (wich is rather stiff) directly on the arm base without those flexible leads, but you must let the cable form a large loop in order to let the arm move freely. (I hope I'm clear, sorry for my english...)
If you proceed this way, there is no reason for the cable to be damaged.

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by tlscapital » 02 Sep 2018 15:36

Lizardking wrote:I saw the TT lat night. The top is removable which I have not seen before. The RCA phono outputs are on the bottom of the tonearm so you have to remove the op to connect them. Is your setup this way? Will the cable be damaged by this in your opinion?
By the "top" you mean the dust cover ? Not the aluminium top plate ? Anyway, top access the under chassis all you need is to unscrew the bottom plate.

And as for the tonearm cables coming out from the bottom, it shouldn't be an issue if the feet are allowing enough room for them not to be squashed.

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by tlscapital » 02 Sep 2018 16:20

bernard1 wrote:SME series III was designed to match high compliance carts, such as Shure V15 IV, at the time.
Specs for AT VM750SH are : Dynamic Compliance: 10 x 10-6 cm/dyne (100 Hz)
That should match the SME.
The SME series III S was sold without damper tank. But you can add one later and choose the right paddle according to the cart compliance. It should be the grey one for the VM750SH.
Does you seller has the complete set of lead weight ? It's usefull to make the best combination in the counterweight. (See the Sme manual in the library).

The TD 160 super + SME series III is a very good match : it's one of mine since 1982 !
These SMEs SIII are indeed of the light effective mass kind. Thus to be fitted with high compliant cartridges. Where if the AT 750 is indeed at '10' for compliance rating, this sets it more as a 'medium' (leaning toward 'low') compliance kind of cartridge.

But as you implied some mass through shims can be partly added on the headshell providing the seller will also supply the extra counter weights required to balance the tonearm. This mass addition for more "inertia" should please and "open up" the cartridge.

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Lizardking » 03 Sep 2018 03:28

I was able to see the TT earlier day. My buddy owns it s I will buy it from him. The top half of the TT can be removed. There is no DIN connector. When this TT was hook up months ago, there was a ground loop 60hz hum. The ground wire is very thin is seems be be connected to a screw inside the box. We will have to use a meter to check what the issue is. Maybe it won't hum in my system, maybe it will. The power cord seems to me that It should be replaced by a better , shielded cord. The end is connected inside the unit so maybe cut them and have a two prog connector hang?

Maybe place a better ground wire?

any ideas?

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Sunwire » 03 Sep 2018 06:12

I would not remove the top of the turntable.
But if you can provide a photo when you get the turntable, maybe we can understand what you are talking about. The top of the TD160 Super is not really designed to be removed, so either yours has been modified or you are not communicating the situation clearly.
Perhaps you mean the dust cover or the turntable outer platter. Those are both removable. Both should be removed before turning the turntable upside down to work on the tonearm or grounding connections.
You may want to read through the owners manual to get familiar with the turntable before attempting to do any work on it.
The manual is downloadable here:
https://www.vinylengine.com/library/thorens/td160.shtml

There are also a few videos on youtube that show disassembly of TD160 turntables, so you may want to watch a couple of those.

SME tonearms don't use DIN connectors. The SME 3009III uses 2 RCA connectors and a ground connection
The hum could be from a missing ground connection between the tonearm and the turntable chassis.
There is no special wire needed for the ground wire. Any normal stranded wire will work.
Same with the power cord. Perhaps your turntable is different, but my TD160 Super has an external power transformer (a "wall-wart"). I believe it provides 16 volts to the turntable. There should be no need for any special cord or shielding. The power supply should plug into the back of the turntable in a small circular socket.

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Lizardking » 03 Sep 2018 06:45

Thanks. Do you know hat lubricant I can use at the bearing?

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Sunwire » 03 Sep 2018 18:54

I would use the SPINDLE OIL available from KABusa.com
Look under "Sound Accessories", then "Turntable Accessories".
An equivalent is Anderol 465, which is available on ebay.
But I think KABusa.com is the least expensive source for the small quantity you need.

Here is a thread about it. This is in regard to Technics turntables, but the same principles apply to Thorens.
https://www.vinylengine.com/turntable_f ... 16&t=79232

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Re: Thorens TD 160 super with an SME Series III S Tonearm

Post by Lizardking » 03 Sep 2018 20:16

Thanks. I am thinking about the Origin live lubricant.

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