Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

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goatbreath
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Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by goatbreath » 17 Jul 2019 13:27

The Ortofon Blue or the Audio Technica VM 530 EM/VM 540 ML..

My Sondek with Rega is dark..
Even a bit too dark with a AT 95e..

Apparently the Ittok etc were quite bright arms..

62vauxhall
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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by 62vauxhall » 17 Jul 2019 13:48

I've not owned either of those two cartridges but have had other examples from both manufacturers. My own conclusion was that AT's are brighter than Ortofon's. I found the latter a bit "flat" sounding. I prefer cartridges made in the US finding them more "lively". That may or may not be suitable for all depending on what genre of music is favored. I'm pretty much strictly rock and roll.

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by BMRR » 17 Jul 2019 15:26

The observation I've seen from several sources is that the VM500 / VM700 Series are less bright than previous AT cartridges. This also seems to be the case with the VM95 Series.

I owned a 2M Blue for a while and it was somewhat bright but not excessively bright. However, I found it was somewhat lacking in the midrange and that my AT cartridges did a better job of presenting the mids correctly.

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by goatbreath » 18 Jul 2019 06:15

Well,I pulled the trigger on a new Turntable,all for very sensible reasons.
partly health ones as it has an automatic lift at the end of the side..
Must admit,long notes and piano I can hear the difference with direct drive..
It came with a bundled Ortofon 2M Red..
I am very unimpressed with this cartridge's,tracking ability..
I first tried an Audio Technica AT91 and it ran circles around the 2M Red on tracking tests..
Any Classical Material with the slightest dynamic contrast,it was just totally mistracking..Yikes..
You know,big mistracking rasps..
I was tracking at 1.88 grams..
There is now a Nagaoka MP110 on there on Nagaoka Headshell,
I have only heard the Nagaoka through headphones so far..
Like the AT 91 the Nagaoka cleared all the tracking tests on the Hifi News disc apart from Level 4..
It looks like my Linn Sondek is going into retirement for a while anyway..
There is a brand new Technics SL1500C sitting in it's place..

I was considering the Ortofon for the souped up Rega RB250 on the Sondek..
I don't know that I want to subject my records to it.
I really do not like the Ortofon 2M Red..

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by BMRR » 18 Jul 2019 15:12

To be honest, I think the 2M Red is probably the most overrated cartridge of the last 10 years. It can work OK on some turntables but it simply isn't worth the $100 price tag. The $36 Ortofon Omega sounds and performs virtually identical to the 2M Red. They charge a hefty premium for the fancier appearance of the 2M.

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by derspankster » 18 Jul 2019 15:15

BMRR wrote:
18 Jul 2019 15:12
To be honest, I think the 2M Red is probably the most overrated cartridge of the last 10 years. It can work OK on some turntables but it simply isn't worth the $100 price tag. The $36 Ortofon Omega sounds and performs virtually identical to the 2M Red. They charge a hefty premium for the fancier appearance of the 2M.
I agree with you on the Red. I've not heard one on my system but my neighbor runs one and I've heard his. He has a Dual 1219.

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by BMRR » 18 Jul 2019 15:27

I will say that the 2M Blue is a significant improvement over the Red, but it costs more than twice as much — $236. That's still overpriced, in my opinion. My Blue tracked well and had good bass but I just couldn't live with the scooped midrange.

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by goatbreath » 18 Jul 2019 15:51

I am listening to a non tie wire Jico M75 G stylus on a Shure M75 body..
On an ADC headshell..I am going to experiment with a slightly lighter one at some point too..
It beats the 2m Red in every way,as does the Ortofon 510 mk 2 the 2m Red's predecessor....
The Ortofon on a SME sort of copy headshell..Reports vary,either 6.5 or 6.8 grams with wires..
My ED again Jico non tie wire 3x7 elliptical involves moving a pile of things to get to it..
This will be tested too..I am impressed by the G stylus on the Technics arm..
I thought it would be a mismatch..
I thought both cartridges/styli would be too high compliance..
They sail through the Hifi News tests..Apart from band 4..
Both sound very nicely balanced in the Technics arm..

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by lenjack » 18 Jul 2019 16:18

If brightness is all you want, turn up the treble.

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by goatbreath » 18 Jul 2019 16:44

lenjack wrote:
18 Jul 2019 16:18
If brightness is all you want, turn up the treble.
Then I lose bass..

I use a Quad 44 Pre Amp..
It's one weakness is a lack of a separate treble control..
It has the the tilt control instead,most of the time it works,it is also quick and easy....
It doesn't correct the dark Sondek though..

Also the Shure M97xe on some turntables,mine sounds dull..
Some other people get angry and swear it doesn't..
The regular pattern seems to be some folk do get roll off,some don't..
Still thinking about selling my M97xe's and unused boxed Shure needles..
I'm kind of nervous about Ebay though..

I like the sound of my Serviced Quad 405-2 and late 44 very much..
So have decided to live with and settle down with them..

BMRR
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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by BMRR » 18 Jul 2019 19:10

goatbreath wrote:Still thinking about selling my M97xe's and unused boxed Shure needles..
I'm kind of nervous about Ebay though..
Don't sell them on eBay; sell them here. :)

Vinylengine has a For Sale section:

HiFi For Sale and Wanted

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by Sunwire » 18 Jul 2019 20:12

goatbreath wrote:
18 Jul 2019 06:15

Must admit,long notes and piano I can hear the difference with direct drive..
What is the difference you hear?

I also own a Quad 44, though I don't use it much.
Have you tried changing the capacitance on the phono input?
This should have some effect on the top octave or two, depending on the cartridge.

Some users on this forum have reported that using a Jico SAS stylus or an LPGear Vividline stylus on the Shure M97 increases the high frequency output, while still tracking very well.
Many users report that the M97's original stylus has a rolled-off treble.

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by goatbreath » 20 Jul 2019 18:22

Well I realigned the Ortofon Red from 52 MM Technics Alignment to 49 MM Pioneer Alignment..
It lines up with 1 point Baerwald alignment and the mistracking and distortion is gone..
Different sounding cartridge..

The fact it is on a Technics Turntable is the head scratcher..
The distortion on loud passages of orchestral music have gone,so I'm happy..




Sunwire

I have better cartridges and have several M97xe unused styli..
I don't intend to buy more styli for it....
I have alternatives and I have owned Jico SAS Styli,I preferred the sound of my old V15 III stylus..
The LP Gear Vivid Line may not have a tie wire..I have found that disastrous in some Shures,
Yet not with M 75 Cartridges..I have no idea why,but I don't intend to gamble any more money
on aftermarket Styli..Even my V15 III is sitting Dormant..

I use outboard phono stages with capacitance adjustment..
The Xe sounds worse on the other settings..More 2D..

Some people love the Shure M97Xe..
It didn't sound rolled off on my old Kenwwod 7010 when I owned it..
Another quartz lock. direct drive..
I don't think as stable as my new Technics SL1500 C..
Maybe she needed a little overhaul..
Good Deck,that arm had too much mass for me though..
i also have a DD Technics SL110 with SME 3009 Improved S2 detachable..
Brilliant sounding Deck..Over all very stable,but the SL1500 C is mega stable..
The Arm on it is better than I expected too..

More note stability with DD is what I am hearing..
You don't notice it with belt or idler,then I heard Quartz Locked DD..
The Cogging has also been engineered out of the new Technics Motors..
I don't know if you could hear that anyway..
The note pitch is dead stable,I tune up instruments every day,so maybe I notice these things more..
I can enjoy Belt Drive and Idler,they sound great..
Just when I hear a Good DD Deck,I hear that stability on the pitch of long notes.
Especially on Piano..Your ear seems to forget the stability until you hear it again though
I dare say most sane people don't notice it..


I think my Sondek may go into retirement for a while..

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by plyscds » 21 Jul 2019 13:24

It's true. The N97xE stylus will carry it's laid-back-ness with it if it is put into another Shure sourced cartridge which will accommodate it. And a livelier stylus which will fit an M97xE body will yield a brighter, more revealing sound.

But with each passing day this argument becomes less important. One day in the near future an unopened N97xE stylus will be worth it's weight in... uh... diamonds, I guess. And that's not being a smart-a$$. Just what will happen when the supply of unopened N97xE's dries up?

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Re: Which Cartridge would you say is the Brightest.

Post by Mr Pig » 27 Jul 2019 21:00

A stock RB300 on an LP12 will give you a 'dark' or 'grey' sound. You could change the arm. An ittok is a better tonal match but in terms of absolute sound quality is different from the RB300 rather than a wholesale upgrade. It has its own set of issues to contend with. And they're not cheap!

You can alter the sound the RB300 in two ways that will largly solve your problem. Remove the paint and rewire the arm. Both are popular mods and they will open up the sound. It will be clearer, lighter on its feet and the bass will be tighter. There is a reason Regas best arms, the RB1000/RB2000 have no paint on them.

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