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Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

the thin end of the wedge

Whats your setup, or preferred setup? - Regarding MC cartridges and amplification boost

1. Using a dedicated MM/MC preamp
13
48%
2. Using a SUT + MM only preamp
14
52%
 
Total votes : 27

Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby omegabri » 06 Oct 2017 16:02

Hi all

I'm just curious. As with everything 'hifi', nothing is really that straight forward (ar least in my little head :lol: )

I'm only just now considering moving away from an MM cart, to seperate stereo, and mono MC carts. I have a solid state MC/MM switchable preamp (obviously between my TT and main amp input line), but I see there are other options........Step Up Transformer's (SUT), working with an MM preamp.
Does that give better quality? Clearer dB boost to low output MC carts? Is it worth ignoring my MC preamp and leaving it switched as MM, but adding a SUT?? #-o #-o

Ok....my pole is out. Just wondering what people reckon is best
(Thankfully its Friday, so I can just sit back, listen to some lp's, have a beer, and not bang my head too much with this one! :lol: :lol: :lol: )

Have a great weekend all :wink:
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby Blue Shadow » 06 Oct 2017 18:27

SUT Check
MM phono input on the preamp Check
MC phono input on the preamp Check
MC phono pre preamp to phono input level Check
MC phono to line level unit Check

I guess I got the two poll questions covered.

Back in the day the phono pre-preamp was common then SUTs took over now although the SUT seems to be the most popular the use of other types of amplification are around. Folks spend lots of time and money figuring out what they like best. Good Luck with your venture.
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby Alec124c41 » 06 Oct 2017 18:47

I don't think there is one hard and fast answer. It would depend so much on the quality of the phono preamp.
With my Azur 640P using an SUT into the MM side is better than the MC side of the preamp. OTOH the DB-8 MC is excellent.
This is without getting into more expensive phono preamps.

Cheers,
Alec
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby JoeE SP9 » 06 Oct 2017 19:21

I use a Marcof PPA-1.
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby Stumpy21 » 06 Oct 2017 19:22

@Alec Strange I found the exact opposite, my AT-33ptg-II sounds so much more detailed through the 640P MC stage than through a SUT/MM setup.
That is the trouble with Hi-Fi, different combinations can give very different results.
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby nezbleu » 06 Oct 2017 19:33

I use a self-built Salas Folded Simplistic RIAA phono stage configured for low-output MC, so my Denon DL-311LC plugs directly into that, and sounds great. :) I have never tried that cart with SUT into a MM stage, so my opinion is uninformed.
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby billshurv » 06 Oct 2017 20:45

Problem with SUTs is that they generally need a snubbing network to stop them ringing. I have a SUT that I abandoned 20 years ago that one day will have another change when I can get around to characterising it.

MM and MC have such different interface requirements that a seperate stage for each is justified IMO. I have a number on the bench being built up.
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby omegabri » 06 Oct 2017 21:16

Looks like a whole new adventure ahead of me (well, next yr....when I intend to start playing with MC's - and have saved up some pennies, of course :wink: :roll: :lol: )

:) :) :)
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby billshurv » 06 Oct 2017 22:10

And I'm heading back to MM for a while after a 30 year break!
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby jdjohn » 06 Oct 2017 23:01

One key when using an SUT with MC is to get a good match. Different MC carts have different impedance loads and DC resistance, so finding a well-matched SUT with the proper windings/resistance/step-up ratio can make-or-break the sound.

I've just gotten into this myself, and got an Audio Technica Signet MK12T, which has three different ohm settings plus a 'pass' setting in case an MM is swapped-in...no re-cabling necessary. Your Rothwell mates in the UK make some nice SUTs from what I understand.

@JoeE_SP9: I recently saw a Marcof PPA-2 on eBay. Those use two 9V batteries from what I understand.
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby omegabri » 07 Oct 2017 14:52

This might turn out to be a bit of a mine field for me ! :lol: :lol:

If anyone is knowledgeable to work it out; I'm thinking of getting the Ortofon Quintet Bronze (for stereo) , and Ortfon Quintet White (for mono)

Here's the spec
https://www.ortofon.com/mc-quintet-bronze-p-548-n-1579
https://www.ortofon.com/mc-quintet-mono-p-606-n-1579

with either...
http://www.iconaudio.com/main-products/mc-tx/
or
http://www.rothwellaudioproducts.co.uk/html/moving_coil_step-up_transforme.html

However, before I get a SUT, I'll be trying the MC carts straight through my Vincent PHO-8
http://www.vincentshop.co.uk/pho-8

Any thoughts?? Thanks all :wink:
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby billshurv » 07 Oct 2017 15:07

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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby JoeE SP9 » 07 Oct 2017 20:24

jdjohn wrote:@JoeE_SP9: I recently saw a Marcof PPA-2 on eBay. Those use two 9V batteries from what I understand.


Yes, they use a pair of 9VDC batteries. The PPA-2 has adjustable gain via DIP switches on the PCB. Consequently it can have more gain than a straight PPA-1. The PPA-1H was a high gain version (Black case) of the PPA-1. The PPA-2 replaced both the PPA-1 and PPA-1H.

The extra gain is for MC carts that have extremely low output levels such as some Ortofons and others. Most LOMC's will work fine through a PPA-1 or PPA-2 set for lower gain.
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby omegabri » 08 Oct 2017 17:08

Just call me Bri..
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Re: Step up Transformer (SUT), or MC preamp?

Postby sturgus » 09 Oct 2017 21:24

I use a MM with a headamp.
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