What did I just buy?

the thin end of the wedge
UrsineDuke
Canada
Posts: 4
Joined: 16 Sep 2019 19:38

What did I just buy?

Post by UrsineDuke » 17 Sep 2019 16:06

Hi All,

I just bought a Dual 1228. I read the manuals provided on this site (thanks!) and watched a bunch of YouTube videos about the model. I consider myself very lucky, this TT is in good shape. I'm looking forward to hearing it play...

It needs the stylus and a cartridge holder (minimum), maybe a cartridge too. I've seen a lot of advice on this site about selection (again, thanks!).

But, what is this cartridge? *see attached pics*
Took the cartridge off, there's no stamp in the casing. Looks like there was once a sticker.

Found a Marantz 2220 B receiver and two (2) Radius 1 speakers (made in Canada).
Should be fun.

Thanks for helping me on my little adventure.
Attachments
IMG_1772 (Large).JPG
(191.81 KiB) Downloaded 346 times
IMG_1771 (Large).JPG
(162.9 KiB) Downloaded 337 times
IMG_1770 (Large).JPG
(196.76 KiB) Downloaded 333 times
IMG_1769 (Large).JPG
(194.43 KiB) Downloaded 334 times

Alec124c41
vinyl engineer
vinyl engineer
Canada
Posts: 23093
Joined: 28 Oct 2002 03:24
Location: North of Toronto, Canada

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by Alec124c41 » 17 Sep 2019 16:46

That looks to be an Empire cartridge, mounted on the Dual carrier/sled.
The contacts on the sled and the headshell probably need cleaning. Contact/control cleaner is recommended for all connections. The eraser on a pencil is abrasive enough to clean contacts, without damaging them.
A new cartridge should have you up and running. Your budget will be one question for that.
You have selected well. Dual, Marantz, and Radius are all good.

Cheers,
Alec

BMRR
vinyl addict
vinyl addict
United States of America
Posts: 5782
Joined: 23 Aug 2013 03:48

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by BMRR » 17 Sep 2019 18:56

Yup, definitely an Empire. Usually the model number was printed on the underside of the cartridge but the paint was prone to wearing off if the cartridge was handled much.

The shape of your Empire suggests that it's probably a member of the 2000 series, which are Moving Iron cartridges and highly regarded then and now. Genuine Empire styli are difficult to find these days, and typically quite expensive if you manage to find one, but the aftermarket styli from JICO are excellent and sound nearly as good as the originals.

Alternatively, and as Alec suggested, you could simply buy a new cartridge. There are hundreds to choose from depending on your budget, starting at $12 and going up to $15,000+. :D

ravelax
member
member
Sweden
Posts: 200
Joined: 25 Oct 2016 16:15

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by ravelax » 17 Sep 2019 19:57

Congratulations on finding a nice Dual in good condition!

Why would you need a new cartridge holder? The TK-15 you have is hard to find, if it isn't broken I'd hold on to it. The thing with these is that they can be set (by turning the little dial on the side) to pivot when using the changer functions, to compensate for the change in VTA when playing a stack of records. This is good for sound quality as well as to reduce stylus and record wear when using an elliptical or more advanced stylus shape with the changer. A nifty feature to have! Keeping it would make your Dual more desirable to the knowledgeable buyer, should you ever decide to sell it.

Of course, some extra carriers can be nice to have if you'd like to swap between different cartridges, and you'll be happy to know that the TK-15 is interchangeable with the more common non-pivoting TK-14 (the later versions TK-24 and 25 can also be used). Replacement and reproduction TK-14/24 are readily available.

spensar
senior member
senior member
Canada
Posts: 717
Joined: 04 May 2014 02:40

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by spensar » 17 Sep 2019 20:38

If looking for a stylus, look for ann Empire 66/x. There are a ton of model numbers for the same basic cartridge but that was about the first one and a good reference for a replacement. It is a very nice cartridge, though as BMMR said the original styluses are hard to find, and even when you do sometimes you can drop and step on them by accident...so I hear 8)

Collux
senior member
senior member
Australia
Posts: 566
Joined: 01 Oct 2017 23:54
Location: Melbourne, AUSTRALIA

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by Collux » 17 Sep 2019 22:07

It's definitely an Empire.
You will need to measure the inductance & resistance of the cart to determine the model.

Empires are today, considered desirable and collectable
(I recently purchased a 2000E/III and 4000D/1)

Styli are difficult to come by but as BMRR has indicated, Jico is a good starting point.
https://www.jico-stylus.com/product-category/empire/
- LP Gear, are also another source from a reliable supplier.
https://www.lpgear.com/category/ES.html
With higher end ViVid Line (hyperelliptical) and Shibata's being available.
VoM is yet another good supplier:
https://www.thevoiceofmusic.com/catalog ... eedles.asp

(Expensive NOS has almost dried up and ebay offerings are likely to be somewaht problematic!)

Here is a 325 page thread on Empire cartridges !
https://audiokarma.org/forums/index.php ... ts.468129/
- I am less than halfway through myself lol ............
Last edited by Collux on 17 Sep 2019 22:18, edited 2 times in total.

BMRR
vinyl addict
vinyl addict
United States of America
Posts: 5782
Joined: 23 Aug 2013 03:48

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by BMRR » 17 Sep 2019 22:12

I've had quite good luck with JICO's Empire styli. Even the conical ones sound great. This is probably because JICO includes the soldered tension wire, which many of the other aftermarket stylus manufacturers do not include. Pfanstiehl styli for Empire cartridges are especially bad (in my experience) because they lack the tension wire AND they use a magnet instead of a piece of iron or permalloy... so they don't track as well and they also require a higher VTF than the originals. They'll play music and they don't sound completely terrible but they really don't do justice to what these cartridges are capable of. I compared a Pfanstiehl Empire elliptical stylus to a JICO Empire conical stylus and the JICO sounded much, much better.

spensar
senior member
senior member
Canada
Posts: 717
Joined: 04 May 2014 02:40

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by spensar » 18 Sep 2019 02:26

The Voice of Music has an Empire branded conical stylus. Has anyone tried this one?

http://www.thevoiceofmusic.com/catalog/ ... erBase=239

UrsineDuke
Canada
Posts: 4
Joined: 16 Sep 2019 19:38

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by UrsineDuke » 18 Sep 2019 13:46

Thanks to Alec and BMRR for getting me started!

I ordered an Audio-Technica AT-VM95E to get me going. I've read good reviews and the price is acceptable.
It certainly won't be my last cartridge as I've been reading that each one has a different sound. I read too that one shouldn't purchase a cartridge worth more than the TT. Difficult to do since I paid $40 for this TT and the next cartridge I'm looking at is the Goldring E3. But it will have to wait, you guys got me excited for this Empire model so I'll try to fit a stylus from JICO.

Thanks Collux for the info! I'll comb through it and also measure inductance & resistance to determine appropriate model. Until I saw your post, I was going to "guess" at it being a 66/x (thanks spensar, I was of the same mind after BMRR put me on the track), but I don't like to guess.

Ravelax, I will keep the TK-15, but is it broken; the common problem of the sheared cam-shaft. I "refurbished" it with epoxy last night, goal is to keep in the "single" record playing mode. The TT didn't come with extra parts required for the changer function. Eventually I'll pick up a reproduction TK-24.

**Anyone know if someone out there makes TK reproductions in Aluminium or material other than plastic?

Thanks again to everyone and again to Alec for getting me started, liked the eraser trick.

Legrace
long player
long player
Canada
Posts: 1591
Joined: 23 Nov 2015 20:17

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by Legrace » 18 Sep 2019 15:01

Best Audio offer a nice TK-24 repo. Injection molded plastic, nice and strong and dimensionally accurate.

Would be well worth setting up your empire with a Jico conical.

Alec124c41
vinyl engineer
vinyl engineer
Canada
Posts: 23093
Joined: 28 Oct 2002 03:24
Location: North of Toronto, Canada

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by Alec124c41 » 18 Sep 2019 17:59

I had an older Dual changer, with no provision for altering the tracking angle for single play. A spacer at the rear of the cartridge levelled it nicely.

Cheers,
Alec

Collux
senior member
senior member
Australia
Posts: 566
Joined: 01 Oct 2017 23:54
Location: Melbourne, AUSTRALIA

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by Collux » 19 Sep 2019 00:33

UrsineDuke wrote:
18 Sep 2019 13:46
I ordered an Audio-Technica AT-VM95E to get me going............
I think that is an excellent start for you.

The VM95 series offers the ability to 'upgrade' styli as you desire.
https://www.audio-technica.com/cms/news ... index.html

UrsineDuke
Canada
Posts: 4
Joined: 16 Sep 2019 19:38

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by UrsineDuke » 19 Sep 2019 14:13

Hi all,
A quick up-date.
JICO Canada tells me I should get this:
https://jicocanada.com/products/jico-re ... 000-stylus
I sent them same photos I posted earlier.
I will check impedance before I buy anything, but thought you'd like to know.

Thanks for the tip Alec. When the cartridge arrives, I will shim up the carrier as needed. I'm worried about getting the needle to sit correctly on the record because there are moving parts on the headshell, but I figure patience will win out.

Collux
senior member
senior member
Australia
Posts: 566
Joined: 01 Oct 2017 23:54
Location: Melbourne, AUSTRALIA

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by Collux » 19 Sep 2019 17:47

Not only are there electrical differences, there are also physical differences with Empire 2000 'x'
cartridges: in particular the stylus shank. (The part of the stylus that is inserted into the cartridge)
- there are large and small square shanks.

The 2000E series (E/1, E/II, E/III) have large shanks

Others like the 2000Z/T have small (and I think the 2000X)

Then there are the 2300 'x' clones etc and similar.

You should now remove your stylus from the body to identify if you have a large or small shank cartridge.

Then the inductance & resistance tests should be undertaken to identify which model cart you actually have.

It's very important this is done.
Without doing these things, you risk purchasing the wrong stylus.

At this stage, it is even an assumption that you have an Empire 2000 'x' !
- Empire 2000 'x' being my own generalisation.
(where 'x' = unknown)

Note:
Empires are a real minefield and the information I have given above on shank size & associated models, may not be totally correct!
AND it's very likely I have also made some omissions.

Collux
senior member
senior member
Australia
Posts: 566
Joined: 01 Oct 2017 23:54
Location: Melbourne, AUSTRALIA

Re: What did I just buy?

Post by Collux » 19 Sep 2019 19:05

Was there an Empire 2000S ?
-I think it is a base Empire 2000 with conical stylus (the original needle being a S-2000)
The next models up are the Empire 2000E, E/I, E/II, E/III, E/V, Z & T.

http://adventureshifi.blogspot.com/2012 ... s-and.html
Last edited by Collux on 19 Sep 2019 19:36, edited 1 time in total.

Post Reply