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MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

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MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby Chat_noir » 19 May 2018 19:09

Hello All,
I'm aware that the stylus of MC cartridge can't be replaced by ourselves like the MM cartridges.
When the stylus of an MC cartridge reach its end of life what happen, what is the next step ?
Do you throw them into the bin ?
Do you send them back to the manufacturer, can they change the stylus, or do they give a rebate for a new one ?
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby LD100 » 19 May 2018 19:28

My last Lyra I traded in on a new Lyra.
Some of my older MCs that aren't made anymore and didn't have trade in value are sitting in a drawer.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby DeepEnd » 19 May 2018 20:19

There are a number of people who can re-tip/rebuild MC’s once the manufacturers no longer support them.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby cafe latte » 19 May 2018 20:43

LD100 wrote:My last Lyra I traded in on a new Lyra.
Some of my older MCs that aren't made anymore and didn't have trade in value are sitting in a drawer.

What have you got I might be interested to get them retipped, pm me if you want to sell them?
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby cafe latte » 19 May 2018 20:45

Chat_noir wrote:Hello All,
I'm aware that the stylus of MC cartridge can't be replaced by ourselves like the MM cartridges.
When the stylus of an MC cartridge reach its end of life what happen, what is the next step ?
Do you throw them into the bin ?
Do you send them back to the manufacturer, can they change the stylus, or do they give a rebate for a new one ?
Chat_noir

It really depends what they are ie how much a new cart is worth. Probably would not worry about getting a 350 dollar cart retipped, but if it cost over 1k it would be worth it for sure.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby Chat_noir » 19 May 2018 22:49

Thank DeepEnd for the information,
DeepEnd wrote:There are a number of people who can re-tip/rebuild MC’s once the manufacturers no longer support them.

I have only small knowledges in MC cart, I didn't know that re-tiping or rebuilding can be made by other people than the manufacturer. I have done a search on the web and I've found some people who can rebuilt MC cartridges.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby Tonybro » 20 May 2018 08:49

If you like the cart and the trade-in value from the manufacturer against a new one isn't great I would look at a re-tip. Plenty of people in EU can do it, including Mr van den Hul himself! :)

The good thing about re-tip/re-build is you can specify a better stylus profile than it originally came with, and sometimes even a better cantilever too...
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby cafe latte » 20 May 2018 10:24

Chat_noir wrote:Thank DeepEnd for the information,
DeepEnd wrote:There are a number of people who can re-tip/rebuild MC’s once the manufacturers no longer support them.

I have only small knowledges in MC cart, I didn't know that re-tiping or rebuilding can be made by other people than the manufacturer. I have done a search on the web and I've found some people who can rebuilt MC cartridges.

Soundsmith do good work I have a few Soundsmith retipped carts, and I am told Expert stylus in the UK do very good work too.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby tlscapital » 21 May 2018 01:02

Chat_noir wrote:Hello All, When the stylus of an MC cartridge reach its end of life what happen, what is the next step ?


You can get them retiped to the stylus original specs or different ones and even swap the cantilever material for a new experience out of your MC cartridge if you're ready to spend money there.

My only experience with a retip was with my faithful and plenty good enough for my use $300 DL-102. It costed me $100 (still worth it in my book) to have it retiped with a bonded diamond.

This will be the case most of the time and it's the "cheapest" option. To my misfortune I have find out that the bonded stylus life span is about twice as short of the original nude ones.

So beside the bonded mounted stylus and the nude ones that not everybody in the retip world can do, indeed, the cost/worth factor of a retip/recantilever all together is to be seriously considered.

I am now developing a masterplan to have a "stock" of new nude stylus mounted on cantilevers to the exact same specs of the original ones and have my DL-102 cartridges re-cantilever alternatively.

That way I'll have sufficient stylus to wear to the day I die :D. This DL-102 MC cartridge I first got 7 years ago is my first MC cartridge and I fell in love with it enough to overcome this inconvenience.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby billshurv » 21 May 2018 12:35

As someone had a nude spherical from Esco for £60 recently seems churlish not to go nude...
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby EdAInWestOC » 21 May 2018 13:38

I've had quite a few cartridges retipped. I had the work done via VdH and via SoundSmith. The work done at both of these places is superb and I cannot recommend them any higher.

The interesting thing about retipping a cartridge is you can increase the performance of many cartridges by adding a better cantilever and/or stylus. Depending on the original stylus/cantilever, the options available from retipping services can be superior to the cantilever/stylus that came on the cartridge.

In the case of cartridges like the Denon DL-103 models, there is a healthy mini-industry where those cartridges receive new cantilever and styli to upgrade the cartridge's performance. Most of the Denon DL-103 models come with an aluminum cantilever and conical styli. In the case of the Denon DL-103 models, the possibility of upgrading their performance is wide open depending on how much the customer is willing to spend and the possible cantilever and stylus choices.

A cartridge can be transformed by a better cantilever and stylus. In the case of a MC cartridge, the cost to retip the cartridge ranges from $300-$500 USD. A retipped Denon DL-103 model outperforms the stock model by quite a large margin and performs well enough to justify the cost of retipping the original cartridge. I used a retipped DL-103D for many years.

It was and still is an exceptional cartridge. I own two retipped DL-103 models. I have a retipped DL-103D and a retipped DL-103R. Both of these cartridges have been replaced by a better cartridge but I keep them as backups in the event I need a spare.

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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby billshurv » 21 May 2018 14:01

EdAInWestOC wrote:The interesting thing about retipping a cartridge is you can increase the performance of many cartridges by adding a better cantilever and/or stylus.


Note that changing the cantilever will CHANGE the performance of a cartridge but it's a crap shoot as to whether that will improve things as the whole moving system is designed together so changing stiffness or propagation velocity or mass without changing the damper is up in the air.

Having said that, pays money takes choice.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby EdAInWestOC » 21 May 2018 14:10

billshurv wrote:
EdAInWestOC wrote:The interesting thing about retipping a cartridge is you can increase the performance of many cartridges by adding a better cantilever and/or stylus.


Note that changing the cantilever will CHANGE the performance of a cartridge but it's a crap shoot as to whether that will improve things as the whole moving system is designed together so changing stiffness or propagation velocity or mass without changing the damper is up in the air.

Having said that, pays money takes choice.

My experience is limited to retipping the Denon DL-103 models and all of these respond very well to upgrading the cantilever and stylus.

I have friends who have done other cartridges with mostly positive results. If you deal with a responsible retipping service, like SoundSmith, they will advise you on which cartridges will respond to what kind of retipping. Peter is very helpful. I have not dealt with any service who does this kind of work blindly. It is not in their best interest to retip a cartridge with a poor combination.

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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby billshurv » 21 May 2018 14:25

Sorry but that just sounds like a salesman saying what the customer wants to hear. If you read any of the available papers on cantilever design you will see it is a complex interaction. Unless of course modern cartridges are somehow less advanced than they were 40 years ago.

The DL-103 is ancient so may be in a class on its own I will accept.
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Re: MC cartridges stylus' end of life...

Postby EdAInWestOC » 21 May 2018 14:46

billshurv wrote:Sorry but that just sounds like a salesman saying what the customer wants to hear. If you read any of the available papers on cantilever design you will see it is a complex interaction. Unless of course modern cartridges are somehow less advanced than they were 40 years ago.

The DL-103 is ancient so may be in a class on its own I will accept.

If you knew Peter Lederman at SoundSmith you would know what I said was the absolute truth. He is very knowledgeable and talented and he is interested in his customer's systems. Its not hype or overstatement in any way. It is just the way it is.

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