Azimuth problems on new Denon DP-300F

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kevarnold
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Azimuth problems on new Denon DP-300F

Post by kevarnold » 27 Aug 2009 16:36

Hello,

I haven't owned a TT in over 10 years and just bought a new Denon DP-300F (had all the features I wanted for $200 online). (And, yes, I've considered vintage Technics, used Regas and ProJects, etc.)

After setting it up, I noticed the azimuth does not look right. The headshell leans in toward the spindle, causing the vertical line on the front of the cartridge to be anything but perpendicular to the platter. You can see in the pics the entire headshell is not level.

http://i26.tinypic.com/293zgns.jpg
http://i32.tinypic.com/2qluayu.jpg
http://i32.tinypic.com/2j8ktl.jpg

Is it me or is this not good?!

The removable headshell is keyed, so it can only fit in the end of the tonearm one way. Looking at the tonearm end-on, the socket for the headshell is rotated counterclockwise.

http://i29.tinypic.com/wuhv1w.jpg

I'm wondering if I can adjust this. There are 2 screws under the end of the tonearm that may allow me to loosen the socket for the headshell and rotate it. However, I have to pull the tonearm off to get to the screws. Does anyone know if these screws would allow me to do this?

http://i30.tinypic.com/fenf2t.jpg
http://i25.tinypic.com/2cyo081.jpg

Much thanks!

Kevin

Paladin
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Post by Paladin » 27 Aug 2009 16:58

That angle would drive me nuts! I don’t own your model turntable but those screws are in the traditional spot for headshell azimuth adjustment. On mine the screws are slotted so you could get a shorty screwdriver down there then it should be an easy fix. But remove the stylus first!

If you are adventurous then try the muscular twist and hang on to the tonearm really well and do it at your own risk! We don’t want to twist the tube or everything gets screwy.

kevarnold
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Location: Durham, NC

Post by kevarnold » 27 Aug 2009 18:26

Awesome, thanks! Hopefully those screws will do the trick.

I think the screws are phillips head, but I need to get a hand mirror to check. The small screwdrivers I have are still too long, even if I take the platter off and dip down into that space. I'll have to pick up a very short screw driver.

stevec325
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Post by stevec325 » 09 Sep 2010 04:10

Greetings Everyone,

I have just returned to the vinyl world, after over 20 years. My last turntable was... well, junk. My wife just purchased a DP300F for my birthday and we have been spinning our old records for about a week.

Needless to say, I have been trying to catch up technically and feel that I now have a fairly good understanding. There is still much more learning to do, however.

I found this forum and have been reading as much as I can. I noticed that my Dp300F TT has the same condition as reported in this thread. I am wondering if it is a problem, or just how it was designed.

I am considering replacing the factory cartridge with an AT440MLa or an Ortofon 2M Red. I am leaning toward the AT, but cost is a factor!

I would be very appreciative of any advice on the subject of this thread, since I don't want to ruin the new cartridge or, my records.

Thanks in advance!

-steve

lini
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Post by lini » 09 Sep 2010 06:07

Steve: Nope, the headshell shouldn't be tilted like that - should be level. Presumably this can be solved by opening those little screws and readjusting the connector. But reaching these screws could indeed be a challenge. If I had that problem myself, I'd probably first try with one of those little screwdriver bits of my CyberTool thingy (-> http://www.victorinox.com/product/1/100/1000/1.7725.T).

Well, and if you'd like a pretty good cart, but cheaper than the AT440MLa, how about an AT120E? Well, and if it doesn't have to be a current production model, you could also look into some interesting new old stock carts like that little Sontra/Excel Mantra-Audio offers or the Empire 500ID the ebay shop Hifi Nova still offers on ebay.fr.

Greetings from Munich!

Manfred / lini

Alec124c41
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Post by Alec124c41 » 09 Sep 2010 06:19

Some times the back end of an arm is held by a setscrew, and might be more amenable to rotation than the headshell.

Cheers,
Alec

stevec325
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Post by stevec325 » 09 Sep 2010 14:15

Thank you both, for the suggestions. I guess I should have known that it was not correct, but - I "assumed" that the tonearm/cartridge would come from the factory assembled correctly.

I will see how difficult it is to access the the two screws under the tonearm and/or check for another adjustment point near the rear of the tonearm.

Thanks again for the information and advice.

If anyone else has experienced this issue, I'd enjoy hearing how you solved it.

analogaudio
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Post by analogaudio » 09 Sep 2010 14:53

Yes you are right to expect this to come from the factory correctly set, if it was me I'd investigate returning the item for the fault to be rectified.

Loosening the small screws may allow some rotational movement, it is worth a try, but my experience is that the movement allowed is very little, but probably too little.

If you can't get it fixed there is the option to put spacing washers in the headshell on the high side between the cart body upper surface and the headshell underside, probably find something in a good hardware store3/32 inch or 1/8 inch, #2 or #4.

Ted

stevec325
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Post by stevec325 » 09 Sep 2010 15:08

I have sent Denon an email about this problem. Their customer service is usually "less than stellar", but we'll see how they respond. I do not want to send it in for a repair, that given their track record (no pun), will take WEEKS.

Rather, I'd much prefer to return it. However, since my wife purchased it for me as a gift... well, you know how that goes. If the store will exchange it for another unit, that hopefully does not exhibit the same misalignment, that's an option!

Failing that, using small/thin washers seems like the best solution. I should be able to level the cart/headshell, using that method.

Do I now need to be concerned with the vertical distance change that will result? I see no way to adjust the tonearm height - so it may be moot, anyway. Perhaps, the compromise of better azimuth is worth the tradeoff.

stevec325
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Post by stevec325 » 09 Sep 2010 16:09

Update: I just disassembled the headshell from the tonearm again. As it turns out, upon closer examination, the slots in the tonearm do appear to be at 90 degrees to the platter - at least as best that I can visualize.

Looking at the headshell, however, the alignment pin seems to be askew from perpendicular. If I hold the headshell up to the end of the tonearm (without actually inserting the pin into the slot) and position it so that the headshell appears parallel with the platter, the headshell pin does not align with the tonearm slot. If I insert the pin into the slot, the headshell is no longer parallel with the platter.

Aha!! I think my problem lies with a defective headshell!!

Later this evening, I plan to get a straightedge & level out and verify what seems to be the case.

luisquiles
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Re: Azimuth problems on new Denon DP-300F

Post by luisquiles » 27 Apr 2012 21:56

Kevin,

I just purchased the Denon DP 300F and the headshell was perfectly level. My concern with new items is that if you have one issue how many others down the road. My suggestion is to return for a new unit to be on the safe side. I also purchased the Ortonfon 2mm Red and I'm very happy with the sound quality improvement over the stock cart.

Happy listening...

overlock
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Re: Azimuth problems on new Denon DP-300F

Post by overlock » 20 Aug 2012 16:27

I've recently bought the Denon DP 300f turntable - have the same issue with the headshell/cartridge being "tilted" - the azimuth is off. Just wondering if anybody had determined a solution -- i'd rather not take off the arm to adjust but would do so if it will solve the problem.
thanks!
Bob

Alec124c41
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Re: Azimuth problems on new Denon DP-300F

Post by Alec124c41 » 20 Aug 2012 16:43

A sumiko/Jelco HS-12 headshell has adjustable azimuth.

Cheers,
Alec

overlock
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Joined: 13 Aug 2012 20:10

Re: Azimuth problems on new Denon DP-300F

Post by overlock » 20 Aug 2012 16:48

Thanks for the quick reply! I'm hoping to stick with the Denon supplied arm/headshell given that this is brand new - i'm just trying to figure out if I should return the table or if I can perhaps adjust it.
Cheers

raphaelmabo
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Re: Azimuth problems on new Denon DP-300F

Post by raphaelmabo » 20 Aug 2012 17:28

I would return the table to the dealer. It is sold as a "plug'n play" and this means it should be correctly adjusted when you unpack the box. Have the dealer to set it up properly for you.

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