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Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 03 Dec 2019 15:59
by apastuszak
rewfew wrote:
03 Dec 2019 15:29
apastuszak wrote:
02 Dec 2019 18:28
I am now 30 minutes into trying to tape a piece of mechanical pencil lead to the end of the catridge and make sure it's perfectly perpendicular and am having no luck whatsoever.

What animal do I need to sacrifice and to what god do I need to do it in order to align a turntable cartridge?
I'm glad your mighty quest is vanquished. But, I just don't understand how even taping a little pencil lead to the front of the mounting base as shown in the picture could be such a monumental task. When you say the end of the cartridge, did you attempt to place the pencil lead at the very end of the stylus assembly? As pointed out, you can use any flat surface, front, side. The mounting area where you attach the cartridge to the headshell has a large surface area as seen in the pic. Thus my puzzlement. Anyway, again, glad your spinning records. Hopefully your next alignment attempt, if ever, is less stressful.
Yes, I attempted to place the lead at the end of the stylus. I couldn't see how I could get a piece of pencil lead at a perfectly perpendicular angle to the stylus and close to the protractor. If I were to mount it all the way up near the top of the cartridge, my perception of what's straight would change depending on the angle my head was looking at the pencil lead. I wanted the lead as close as possible to the protractor.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 03 Dec 2019 16:19
by wolfie62
I currently have 12 cartridges mounted to headshells, each one aligned. It never takes me more than 15 minutes to get a fine alignment.

One tool I use is a small, bright, LED flashlight. I pass the light over and around the cartridge and check the very well defined shadow. The shadow has to be aligned with the parallel grid marks. It’s easy and works. Even works for rounded body cartridges.

I have never experienced IGD since getting very good alignments this way, using the Conrad Hoffman Arc protractor, Lofgren B alignment, and DIN null points. And I’ve found that my cantilever is always straight, even during play, even with high compliance cartridges/styli. That owes to accurate antiskate settings and a very good tonearm.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 03 Dec 2019 17:58
by rewfew
apastuszak wrote:
03 Dec 2019 15:59
Yes, I attempted to place the lead at the end of the stylus. I couldn't see how I could get a piece of pencil lead at a perfectly perpendicular angle to the stylus and close to the protractor. If I were to mount it all the way up near the top of the cartridge, my perception of what's straight would change depending on the angle my head was looking at the pencil lead. I wanted the lead as close as possible to the protractor.
That is how I did my OM super. When you look directly down looking at the line of pencil lead next to one of the grid lines you can easily, and I repeat, easily see any deviation between grid line and pencil lead line without this gross change via parallax effect. Squinting with one eye or both. Your making this process about as difficult as can possibly be. It does not have to be as close as your alluding to. I've done this innumerable times with many carts and get excellent test record confirmation and playback of vinyl. This is an aid to accuracy, as most cartridge front's do not have a large enough area to compare to the grid lines and your cartridge sides may be obscured by the headshell. It's the same thing as a carpenter using a long level to check a long span to get an accurate level. It increases the comparison of two lines to be parallel together. You say you don't have close visual acuity. When you look down at the two lines to get parallel, a little bit of distance will negate the parallax effect.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 03 Dec 2019 19:18
by apastuszak
rewfew wrote:
03 Dec 2019 17:58
apastuszak wrote:
03 Dec 2019 15:59
Yes, I attempted to place the lead at the end of the stylus. I couldn't see how I could get a piece of pencil lead at a perfectly perpendicular angle to the stylus and close to the protractor. If I were to mount it all the way up near the top of the cartridge, my perception of what's straight would change depending on the angle my head was looking at the pencil lead. I wanted the lead as close as possible to the protractor.
That is how I did my OM super. When you look directly down looking at the line of pencil lead next to one of the grid lines you can easily, and I repeat, easily see any deviation between grid line and pencil lead line without this gross change via parallax effect. Squinting with one eye or both. Your making this process about as difficult as can possibly be. It does not have to be as close as your alluding to. I've done this innumerable times with many carts and get excellent test record confirmation and playback of vinyl. This is an aid to accuracy, as most cartridge front's do not have a large enough area to compare to the grid lines and your cartridge sides may be obscured by the headshell. It's the same thing as a carpenter using a long level to check a long span to get an accurate level. It increases the comparison of two lines to be parallel together. You say you don't have close visual acuity. When you look down at the two lines to get parallel, a little bit of distance will negate the parallax effect.
I'm sure I'm making this more difficult that it needs to be. But this is only the second alignment I have done in my life. I'm sure it will get easier as I do more.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 04 Dec 2019 15:46
by rewfew
apastuszak wrote:
03 Dec 2019 19:18
I'm sure I'm making this more difficult that it needs to be. But this is only the second alignment I have done in my life. I'm sure it will get easier as I do more.
Well, you've earned your purple heart with your recent trials & tribulations. I hope your next attempt is with an easier cartridge to align. I think this experience has cleared your learning curve. Good luck and most important, happy listening.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 04 Dec 2019 16:08
by apastuszak
rewfew wrote:
04 Dec 2019 15:46
apastuszak wrote:
03 Dec 2019 19:18
I'm sure I'm making this more difficult that it needs to be. But this is only the second alignment I have done in my life. I'm sure it will get easier as I do more.
Well, you've earned your purple heart with your recent trials & tribulations. I hope your next attempt is with an easier cartridge to align. I think this experience has cleared your learning curve. Good luck and most important, happy listening.
I think I get to align all over again. I played a few albums last night and i am definitely getting inner groove distortion. Which annoys me, because I returned the PRO S Stylus already.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 04 Dec 2019 22:08
by jdjohn
It might not be an alignment issue. Is it on all records? Did you re-calibrate (zero balance) the tonearm before setting VTF? You could try bumping it up another 0.25g. Stylus clean? If it gets junk on it, you'll hear sibilance.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 04 Dec 2019 23:01
by apastuszak
jdjohn wrote:
04 Dec 2019 22:08
It might not be an alignment issue. Is it on all records? Did you re-calibrate (zero balance) the tonearm before setting VTF? You could try bumping it up another 0.25g. Stylus clean? If it gets junk on it, you'll hear sibilance.
Stylus is clean. Just adjusted VTF. It was 0.25g too low. I bumped it up to the recommended 1.5g using a VTF scale.

I played 2 records after I did that, and they sounded fine. Will need to test more.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 05 Dec 2019 15:20
by jdjohn
It's amazing how much of a difference small tweaks can make. Setting up tt's is an OCD person's dream! But this is also why so many people "getting back into vinyl" are disappointed...they expect it to be 'plug-and-play', and sound great with little-to-no effort.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 05 Dec 2019 15:29
by apastuszak
jdjohn wrote:
05 Dec 2019 15:20
It's amazing how much of a difference small tweaks can make. Setting up tt's is an OCD person's dream! But this is also why so many people "getting back into vinyl" are disappointed...they expect it to be 'plug-and-play', and sound great with little-to-no effort.
It can be made very plug and play, if you want it to. If someone made an affordable turntable that takes a p-mount cartridge and is linear tracking, you're going to get pretty close to plug and play. No need to align the cartridge. No need to set anti-skate. No need to set VTF, VTA or SRA. Pretty much great sound out of the box without any tweaking.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 05 Dec 2019 15:48
by jdjohn
^^^This is true, but even those need to be serviced if coming out of storage, or not used for a few decades. I have a Technics SL-Q5, and recently, an SL-J2, both of which needed serious cleaning of old grease along the linear tracking 'path' under the cover. Also new tonearm belts. And even then, the stylus should be cleaned.

But you are right, those types are closest to PNP, and with a nice stylus, can sound REALLY nice. The specs on them are impressive, with rumble at -78db :shock: It's amazing that those models don't sell for higher prices, but I think people don't gravitate towards them since you can't really see everything in action, so don't get the entire vinyl experience. Those models are more like great big disc-mans :lol:

I was looking back to the beginning of your thread here, and saw you had your eye on an SL-Q5 8) If it's still available, you might want to grab it!

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 05 Dec 2019 16:49
by apastuszak
jdjohn wrote:
05 Dec 2019 15:48
^^^This is true, but even those need to be serviced if coming out of storage, or not used for a few decades. I have a Technics SL-Q5, and recently, an SL-J2, both of which needed serious cleaning of old grease along the linear tracking 'path' under the cover. Also new tonearm belts. And even then, the stylus should be cleaned.

But you are right, those types are closest to PNP, and with a nice stylus, can sound REALLY nice. The specs on them are impressive, with rumble at -78db :shock: It's amazing that those models don't sell for higher prices, but I think people don't gravitate towards them since you can't really see everything in action, so don't get the entire vinyl experience. Those models are more like great big disc-mans :lol:

I was looking back to the beginning of your thread here, and saw you had your eye on an SL-Q5 8) If it's still available, you might want to grab it!
I'm debating it. Right now I have more turntables than I can use.

For linear tracking turntables, I don't understand why there aren't new AFFORDABLE LT turntables. It's almost 2020. I'm sure someone could make a LTT with a minimal feature set for a cheap price. I found a Aiwa LX-770 at a thrift store for $10.00. It's kind of neat to play with. Just wish there were more styluses available for it, besides conicals.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 22 Dec 2019 22:58
by cakenut33
jdjohn wrote:
05 Dec 2019 15:20
It's amazing how much of a difference small tweaks can make. Setting up tt's is an OCD person's dream! But this is also why so many people "getting back into vinyl" are disappointed...they expect it to be 'plug-and-play', and sound great with little-to-no effort.
And this is why I love vinyl - the fact that you have to exert some effort to produce decent sound. If I just want to listen to music I'll fire up Spotify or turn the radio on. But the tactile nature of vinyl and the skill and care involved makes it a worthwhile pursuit in itself.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 24 Dec 2019 01:51
by chgc
apastuszak wrote:
05 Dec 2019 16:49
I don't understand why there aren't new AFFORDABLE LT turntables.
There have been a couple of attempts to make gimmicky (in my opinion) versions of a linear tracker on Kickstarter (“Wheel” and “Love”). The results have been underwhelming so far.

I’m sure it could be done, but a standard pivoting tonearm turntable is a lot simpler, as many have remarked.

Re: Turntable with all controls outside the dust cover

Posted: 24 Dec 2019 02:59
by apastuszak
cakenut33 wrote:
22 Dec 2019 22:58
jdjohn wrote:
05 Dec 2019 15:20
It's amazing how much of a difference small tweaks can make. Setting up tt's is an OCD person's dream! But this is also why so many people "getting back into vinyl" are disappointed...they expect it to be 'plug-and-play', and sound great with little-to-no effort.
And this is why I love vinyl - the fact that you have to exert some effort to produce decent sound. If I just want to listen to music I'll fire up Spotify or turn the radio on. But the tactile nature of vinyl and the skill and care involved makes it a worthwhile pursuit in itself.
And this is why CD beat vinyl. Great sound with no effort. Towards the end of the turntable's life, I think linear tracking and p-mount cartrdiges finally gave the average man the ability to get decent sound out of their records.

I don't know why every audiophile feels the need to exert tons of effort into making something sound perfect. There's a strong belief that if great sound is achieved too easily, something is wrong.