View Full Version : Stanton 785lze & mystery Stanton. What to do with them?


Bauhausler
06-11-2012, 04:51 PM
Howdy. A friend laid some oddball carts on me today. One is a Stanton 785LZE with a busted cantilever. The other has no label. It's a chromed Stanton with a busted D98S stylus. He said these supposedly were low Z low output MM carts from late in Stanton's Hi Fi phase and they're very good. I can't find out much about them. But I'll bet someone here knows. Please fill me in on whether these are worth hunting styli for & trying out.

Cheers

majick47
06-12-2012, 02:07 PM
Might be good candidates for a SoundSmith retip.

Bauhausler
06-12-2012, 02:14 PM
Might be good candidates for a SoundSmith retip.

Possibly, depending on the price. From what I've seen his retips rival a good new cart in price and are far from a bargain repair.

LPTunes has a $100 Vivid Line (http://www.lptunes.com/Stylus-for-Stanton-981HZS-cartridge-p/stns981hzs.htm) substitute for the D98S. That might be more reasonable. I wish I knew what that cart was. The only identifying feature is the chromed body. Any label is long gone.

LPGear has a $170 Shibata (http://www.lpgear.com/product/STAD0088S.html) replacement for the D88S stylus on the 785LZE. That seems a little steep for an experiment.

LPGear also has a $100 Vivid Line (http://www.lpgear.com/product/STAD0098S.html). I wish I knew what Stanton styli fit which models.

ETA: KAB has a useful cart/stylus cross ref: http://www.kabusa.com/stantonx.htm

empirelvr
06-12-2012, 02:32 PM
EDITED******EDITED*****EDITED***

Both your cartridges are from the same low-output "family" Stanton produced starting with the 980LZS.

Found some good info, courtesy of Richard whom I reference below.

From here: http://www.lencoheaven.net/forum/index.php?topic=3622.msg56619#msg56619


"The 981s were introduced similarly: the uncalibrated version was first, soon followed by the calibrated one, then quickly, the 885LZS and the 785LZE. Unfortunately, the excellent designation system has fallen apart with these numbers. The 885 was at a slighly lower price point, and the "E" was a .2 x .7 elliptical."


How bad is the damage on the one with the D98S stylus? Those are as rare as hen's teeth and if it could be retipped, you'd have a real find there. No one has proper replacements for the 981 series, including JICO. The 981 was one hell of a cartridge.

empirelvr
06-12-2012, 02:36 PM
I wish I knew what Stanton styli fit which models.

Sign up at Lencoheaven (http://www.lencoheaven.net/forum/index.php?action=register) and do a search for Richard Steinfeld. He's written a book (The Handbook for Stanton and Pickering Phonograph Cartridges and Styli) that is the end-all, be-all of all things Pickering and Stanton. You can get more details how to buy the book through the lencoheaven website once you join.

It's a great book and he's a real nice guy! It will have the answers you are looking for. :thmbsp:

Bauhausler
06-12-2012, 02:55 PM
The 785LZE sounds like one of the "private-label" Stanton cartridges sold as "exclusives" to various retailers back in the day. It appears to be a low output cart due to the "L" in the model number, but it's not from the "main" Stanton line. Online sources suggest a D71EE stylus is a good replacement, but I don't know if I would trust that.

The one with the D98S stylus suggests it would be a 981. It's not easy to tell though if it is the low output/MC compatible version (981LZS) or the "normal" output version (981HZS.) Both would be moving-magnets, btw despite the MC-like output voltages.

How bad is the damage on the one with the D98S stylus? Those are as rare as hen's teeth and if it could be retipped, you'd have a real find there. No one has proper replacements for the 981 series, including JICO. The 981 was one hell of a cartridge.

Thanks. That's useful to know. The cantilevers in both are gone. Just the stylus grip left. These came from the collection of a friend who has about 35 carts with no cantilevers in them.

GP49
06-12-2012, 03:32 PM
As per his EDITED******EDITED*****EDITED*** post: Empirelvr is correct not to trust those "online sources" who say the D71EE stylus is s good replacement for the Stanton 785LZE. The D71EE is for a completely different "family" of Stanton cartridges, the Stanton 500 Mk II line. The D720E for which it is really made is a P-mount Stanton 500 Mk II. In fact a D71EE won't even FIT the 785LZE body, or any of the samarium-cobalt moving magnet Stanton bodies, which are taller; the D71EE has a flange that prohibits the interchange.

idlerwheel
06-12-2012, 04:10 PM
I have been conjured from a deep sleep.
-----------------------
Ouch!
What's your friend's special talent that he's so prolific at breaking needles? In general, it's harder to break Stanton/Pickering needles than it is with similar-performing styli of other brands. But it can be done. I hate to see the best ones broken.

The best solution with a worn stylus these models is to go to Expert Stylus, in England, for a re-tip. They simply have the most experience, make their own tips, and can provide a very close match to Stanton's original Stereohedron diamond shape. You will have to wait in line because they are very busy.

They will also have some idea about whether a cantilever repair is wise or not. Stanton's metallurgy and shaping was quite advanced, so a change here can be expected to provide some change from the original sonics. I'm waiting to hear back about a similar (but slightly easier, not identical) cantilever fix from an audiophile with an 881.

Empirelvr has been quoted from an earlier post, and I want to explain:

"The 785LZE sounds like one of the "private-label" Stanton cartridges sold as "exclusives" to various retailers back in the day."

Empirelvr probably wrote the above before he obtained my Handbook, in which I explained as much as I possibly could about these products and how they related with standard ones (which, in fact, they were, and the needles, "sort-of").

Stanton/Pickering was not a major player in the private label game. This practice has really bedeviled us due to the countess fake cartridge model numbers. The largest practitioner was Shure, followed by AT and Empire. Private Label cartridges have been extremely confusing regarding replacement styli, with Empire being the most confounding of them all. Stanton never offered their highest-performing products in private label form.

Stanton's private label cartridges were not shown in their dealer catalogs, but their replacement styli were, without any specifications or matching data. I have worked out the missing information for almost all of these products and printed them in the Handbook.

Considering the subtle unique engineering features of these original styli (and I credit GP49 with bringing one of the patents to my attention), it's highly doubtful that any aftermarket stylus manufacturer could get these needles 100% correct, even if their needles are good.

Contrary to a fantasy that some stylus dealers believe, with Stanton's tall cartridges that use samarium cobalt magnets in their cantilevers, substituting styli from one to another will produce a change in peformance. Unlike earlier Stanton/Pickering lines, bodies and styli in this group can be interchanged, but they won't sound as they were intended to.

This change can be significant. What this comes down to is that the best practice today will probably be to have a good used stylus assembly re-tipped with a suitable replacement diamond.

In my book, I covered the company's "golden years," when they offered more than 135 different original styli. Manufacturing all of these, of course, is impractical today. What I would love to see is the re-manufacturing of the company's highest-performing products, as well as their most useful cartridges for archival and transcription work.

KentTeffeteller
06-12-2012, 05:13 PM
Seconded, just for a 680/681 family example, we need these styli as regular stock items:

6800 AL (2-5 gram heavy duty conical, the 680v3 is comparable)
6807 A (1 1/2-3 gram light tracking conical)
1 mil mono stylus in this series
6800 SL (2-5 grams tracking force Stereohedron Disco Stylus)
Stereohedron II stylus tracking from 3/4- 1 1/2 grams
2.7 mil 78 RPM conical tip tracking from 2-7 grams

Bauhausler
06-12-2012, 06:04 PM
Idlerwheel:
Thanks for your explanations and for collecting the info into your book. I was able to find out little on the intertubes and you've filled in a lot. I'm glad this is in AK for future reference.
Alas I have no intact cantilevers for these, so I'll either have to luck into a stylus with a worn diamond that can be replaced or go with a modern substitute and its departures from original spec.

"Ouch!
What's your friend's special talent that he's so prolific at breaking needles? In general, it's harder to break Stanton/Pickering needles than it is with similar-performing styli of other brands. But it can be done. I hate to see the best ones broken."

These have mostly been collected from defective vintage tables bought used. Mostly run of the mill consumer grade stuff but from time to time a V15 or AT15Sa turns up. I doubt he broke any of them himself. 3 years ago I gave him a Denon DL-160 that's stayed on his main 'table in regular use without damage or incident. Though we should probably have a look at the stone, as it's had a LOT of use.

ETA: now that I think of it, he told me he bought these two bodies with wrecked styli for $50 in the hope of finding styli, years ago. It might have been possible then but no more.

dlaloum
06-12-2012, 10:05 PM
In case previous postings were not clear - the LZS series cartridge is a hell of a cartridge!

It does require an MC input and MC style loading as it is a very low inductance cartridge (3mH) with very low output.

Best advice would be to send it to one of the Retippers...

Soundsmith, Expert, etc...

Yes that will cost you between $150 and $400 depending on the options you choose... but if that cartridge were available new, it would set you back at least $500, and perhaps over $1000 in today's $$$

Stylus matching..... it is a low inductance body, so no EQ network (otherwise known as MM cartridge loading) - so getting a really good cantilever on it is critical as it will expose any flaws in cantilever performance quite ruthlessly...

I would go for Sapphire or Boron cantilever if at all possible

bye for now

David

Sam Cogley
06-12-2012, 11:00 PM
Stanton/Pickering was not a major player in the private label game. This practice has really bedeviled us due to the countess fake cartridge model numbers. The largest practitioner was Shure, followed by AT and Empire. Private Label cartridges have been extremely confusing regarding replacement styli, with Empire being the most confounding of them all. Stanton never offered their highest-performing products in private label form.

Trying to figure out Empire's own cartridges is confounding enough, without even considering their private-label carts.

Contrary to a fantasy that some stylus dealers believe, with Stanton's tall cartridges that use samarium cobalt magnets in their cantilevers, substituting styli from one to another will produce a change in peformance. Unlike earlier Stanton/Pickering lines, bodies and styli in this group can be interchanged, but they won't sound as they were intended to.

Which cartridges are these, for those of us who aren't initiated into the arcane world of cartridge construction?

interalian
06-12-2012, 11:56 PM
Could be a 981 HZS with the D98S stylus too.

I'm running the Vivid Line replacement on my 981 HZS right now. I have an original D98S but sadly it has a sagging suspension which causes the grip assembly to hit the LP surface if there is the slightest ripple in the vinyl.

I'm switching between the two as an audition using flat LPs tonight on my PSX-600 BioTracer (http://www.thevintageknob.org/sony-PS-X600.html). Sadly the '80s original sounds better than the Vivid Line replacement. I'll do a bunch of A/B, but initial reaction is much more articulate bass and crisper highs despite probably compromised SRA due to the sagging suspension.

That said, the new stylus has very few hours on it and could well loosen up.

Apologies for the phone pic - I was trying it on the SME V the other day but decided to give it a swing on the SONY tonight instead:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v11/interalian/stereo%20stuff/photo23.jpg

GP49
06-13-2012, 12:04 AM
...I have an original D98S but sadly it has a sagging suspension which causes the grip assembly to hit the LP surface if there is the slightest ripple in the vinyl.

When I first got my Stanton 981, it did just that. It also had an edginess to it, distinctly recognizable when played against a Stanton 881S. I sent it back to Stanton and received back a new 981, said to be hand-selected and thoroughly checked by Stanton's "best technician."

So said the letter signed by Walter O. Stanton.

That 981 was indeed superlative. I still have it, probably still with less than fifty hours on the stylus. It is still superlative.

dlaloum
06-13-2012, 01:06 AM
Which cartridges are these, for those of us who aren't initiated into the arcane world of cartridge construction?

The upper range of Moving Magner Stanton/Pickering cartridges, all of which styli are interchangeable, but voicing will only be achieved by interchanging from other bodies with the same inductance... and there are various inductances.

Stanton
880
881
980
981
890
885
785
CS100

Pickering
XLZxxxx
XSVxxxx
XSPxxxx
TLZxxxx
XUVxxxx
XEVxxxx

Also possibly the TMZ series but I have not found information about these other than a brief mention in a German pickering catalogue...

idlerwheel
06-13-2012, 01:36 AM
Bauhausler said,

Alas I have no intact cantilevers for these, so I'll either have to luck into a stylus with a worn diamond that can be replaced or go with a modern substitute and its departures from original spec.

Expert Stylus has been able to repair broken cantilevers where part of the original still existed. When we're dealing with a high-performance situation like this one, I'd expect the repair to be very good. We should really understand that Stanton's best cartridges were intended to be used for cutting instustry calibration. This means that these were the world's reference cartridges for flat cutter setup. Again, I trust Expert, themselves, to provide you with a good recommendation for a go/no-go decision. But understand that the actual elastic-rigidity characteristics of the original were decided upon to wind up with the desired flatness over the frequency range, as well as other reproduction characteristics.

David wrote,

Stylus matching..... it is a low inductance body, so no EQ network (otherwise known as MM cartridge loading) - so getting a really good cantilever on it is critical as it will expose any flaws in cantilever performance quite ruthlessly...

These low-impedance cartridges were provided with loading specs. Loading was quite forgiving, and I was able to run very long cables without suffering. Stanton offered their own head amps from a succession of 3-4 suppliers, for these cartridges. Mine is from Belgium, and I never found out who actually made it. I don't see any reason why you couldn't run it into a typical moving coil head amp or even a transformer. I don't have any input from people who have used these options. I don't think that Stanton was trying to strong-arm people into buying their head amps.

I would go for Sapphire or Boron cantilever if at all possible

I recommend against this. Stanton's cantilever design was specially-shaped semi-tubular aluminum, probably aircraft-grade, and their mounting arrangement inside the mounting tube was also quite non-conventional (and patented, as GP discovered). All aluminum is not the same, and all shaping is not the same. If a typical gemstone cantilever would have provided improved performance, they would probably have used it. A strong influence on their design decisions was ability to withstand the environment in which they were intended to be used. This is why I'm surprised whenever I see a broken Stanton cantilever. It can be done, but you've got to work a bit to do it. As the performance improves, the ruggedness decreases, of course.

I have found that in the audio world, there is always at least one alternative way to achieve desired performance, so with this in mind, I like to ask the question, "Given the two alternatives, which one of these is the most practical, instead of which one is more exotic?" Audiophiles have often confused exotica and cost with quality. Stanton was a highly engineering-driven company who chose their materials deliberately.

Let's consider, too, that unlike the other cartridge makers that I've known, Stanton actually made their own diamond tips. It stands to reason that with this ability, they would have been able to work with rare metals and even make their own gemstone cantilevers. I'd think that one of the company's engineers probably thought of this, and that they'd rejected it, and definitely not because of cost. Remember, again, what I wrote above about these being the world's professional record cutting reference cartridges. The entire design of the stylus assembly is part of this; the calibration certificate provided with these cartridges were not just for the cartridge body, but included the specific stylus. Changing the needle meant that the cartridge was no longer calibrated.

For all of these reasons, I strongly recommend keeping the needles as original. However, retipping does make the best sense to me. Expert offers good variety in parabolic tips, as well as their own unique advanced shape.

Sam asked,

Which cartridges are these, for those of us who aren't initiated into the arcane world of cartridge construction?

Pickering XSV and low-impedance models. Stanton 880, 881, 980, 981, and all low-impedance models. Also, one or two Pickering quadraphonic models from the mid 70s whose numbers aren't in my head.

interalian mentioned bottoming, to which I want to reply that his stylus has an extremely high compliance figure of 30. The needles for these cartridges are all high-compliance; they differ in how much, but they're all quite high. You shouldn't expect good performance in the wrong arm.

Richard Steinfeld

idlerwheel
06-13-2012, 01:45 AM
delete

idlerwheel
06-13-2012, 01:55 AM
1. How can I delete my own duplicate post here?
2. David gave a more complete cartridge list than the one that I tend to remember. I sometimes tend to overlook the P-mount versions; they're in my book (which I only keep parts of in my head). I am bigoted against the P-mount system because the P-turntables I've measured have been off-spec. He also mentioned a late disco version.

dlaloum
06-13-2012, 03:01 AM
I agree that where possible the existing cantilever should be kept and retipped...

However the aluminium construction used by Stanton/Pickering was very sophisticated, and also involved anodising the external surface to a specified depth.... (you may call it what you like, but it seems pretty exotic to me!)

There is no current equivalent to this that I am aware of... That is to say, simply opting for an aluminium cantilever will not get you even close to the original cantilever performance.

This is why, especially with the low inductance models, I strongly suggest opting for boron or Sapphire cantilevers in cases where the original cantilever is gone.

With regards to loading, I have measured my XLZ7500s and experimented with wide variations in loading - as expected, loading had no impact on frequency response. (so as you stated Richard, they are not overly sensitive to loading!)

Loading a low inductance Stanton/Pickering (the XLZ was the Pickering low inductance range) is much like loading an MC cartridge, and is related to ultrasonic behaviour and interactions with the phono stage, and not related to tailoring frequency response as is the case with the high inductance bodies.

What this means is that with the low inductance bodies, the frequency response of the cantilever is what will be experienced "raw" - a peak or trough cannot be adjusted for with loading (as is often done with high inductance MM models)

So the objective in cantilever choice is to move the primary resonant frequency up as high as possible so as to minimise the impact within the audio range of the rise to the resonant peak.

The rise to that resonant peak is the reason why most MC's have a rising top end - the resonant f is around 24kHz to 28kHz, and the rise to that peak begins at least an octave lower and depending on the damping design/materials used, might begin as much as 2 octaves below the peak (which implies an impact starting at either 12kHz to 14kHz for the substantially damped versions, and 6kHz to 7kHz for the less damped versions) - a resonant f of between 24k to 28kHz is achieved using solid rod cantilevers of beryllium or boron. SAS styli with Boron rod cantilevers come in at 28kHz.
Standard aluminium tube cantilevers seldom do better than 21kHz, and therefore have a stronger impact on the frequency response within the audio zone.

The low inductance bodies are a very valuable and rare cartridge - even more so with the original styli.
I also wonder with ANY low inductance cartridge (including MC's) whether a touch of externally applied EQ would provide better results by permitting the taming of the rising top end? (which is present on my own example...)

bye for now

David

idlerwheel
06-13-2012, 04:06 AM
You have made some interesting points here, David. And you jogged something in my mind, something that didn't come up in my conversations with the factory engineers when I was a small Stanton dealer.

The company was actually quite secretive about technical matters; so much so that their advertising suffered greatly compared with, let's say, Shure. My conversations involved circumlocution. Talking about the differences between Pickering and Stanton equivalents was a strange, frustrating dance.

Since I finished the Stanton/Pickering Handbook about a year ago, a few readers have been writing to me about their various discoveries. I may have unusual expertise about these products, but there are always things that come to light that the expert does not yet know. So, I have been working, on and off, on a supplement to the main book. This will be sent to book owners, free, and will include various interesting additions.

For the low-impedance cartridges, I have three different styli in Stanton, and later, bought a couple of the Pickerings, like everybody else does: hurling myself against the wall at eBay. I have not had a chance to compare these different needles yet.

In one case, the only one where there is a direct electrical match between the brands (you referred to this), a reader mentioned that the needles are not identical: the Pickering is shorter, puts out a stronger output, and reveals a bit of boost in the highs. The differences are subtle, but definitely there. The Stanton, which is calibrated, is flatter. Here's a fascinating difference between the consumer orientation of one line with the professional orientation of the other. It will be interesting, whenever I get to this, to compare what I see between the expected identical low-z styli.

As I recall, the low-Z cartridge was introduced in Pickering before it was released in Stanton.

dlaloum
06-13-2012, 04:23 AM
A shorter cantilever will have lower mass and higher resonant frequency... theoretically, all else being equal.

So short is theoretically good!

The other thing to watch out for, is that there is another set of effects linked to stylus primary resonance...

At the resonance point seperation and distortion (THD) both tend to get dramatically worse.

With the best styli where this effect is well outside the audible range, this is not a concern.

But where the effect is within the audible range, then it can affect tracking ability and imaging....

This effect does not follow the 1 to 2 octave bell curve of the frequency response, it is a very steep bell curve of relatively limited extent.

On some aluminium cantilevers I have uncovered this effect as low as 6kHz (well and truly audible!)

I think the primary resonance is wrongly overlooked as one of the major factor in the performance of ANY stylus.

Also worthy of note : the technique used by manufacturers to measure effective tip mass of a stylus is based on measuring the primary resonance frequency, and then calculating back to the tip mass by the use of a series of constants.... low effective tip mass translates as high res f, and vice versa.
Also low ETM implies flatter frequency response in the audible range... (and again vice versa)

I have yet to measure the primary resonance of my XLZ stylus....

Bauhausler
06-13-2012, 08:16 AM
1. How can I delete my own duplicate post here?


You can edit one of the duplicates and remove all but one word.
And/or flag it by clicking the red triangle in the upper right corner. This alerts a moderator.

interalian
06-13-2012, 10:08 AM
At this point it isn't clear whether it's a LZX or HZS since both used the D98S stylus. If you want, send the body to me and I'll check it out. :deal:

And I can appreciate that having the correct arm for the cartridge is required and that the compliance is meant to be high, but in the case of my old stylus, even with the tracking weight at 3/4 gram you'd barely get a business card between the body and the LP. Even by eye the SRA is off. Highly doubtful the BioTracer is close to the right arm for this one anyway but it's what I have kicking around while the big rig is down.

Bauhausler
06-13-2012, 10:22 AM
A shorter cantilever will have lower mass and higher resonant frequency... theoretically, all else being equal.
*SNIP*
I think the primary resonance is wrongly overlooked as one of the major factor in the performance of ANY stylus.
*SNIP*

If I understand you correctly the primary resonance is a mechanical vibration peak whose frequency depends on the mass of the moving assembly and the springiness of the suspension, and the Q of the peak depends on the lossiness of the damper material. Just wanted to get that in here for clarity. Please correct if I'm wrong.

I have read that on some Quad styli the resonance peak was intentionally moved down into the audio band because this allowed designs with the very wide bandwidth required to reproduce Quad recordings.

empirelvr
06-13-2012, 10:36 AM
I have been conjured from a deep sleep.
-----------------------
Empirelvr has been quoted from an earlier post, and I want to explain:

"The 785LZE sounds like one of the "private-label" Stanton cartridges sold as "exclusives" to various retailers back in the day."
Empirelvr probably wrote the above before he obtained my Handbook, in which I explained as much as I possibly could about these products and how they related with standard ones (which, in fact, they were, and the needles, "sort-of").

Not quite. the above quote is from my first post in this thread, which was a fast written response to the OP. After I posted it I did a little more checking around, and saw one of your LencoHeaven posts and amended it quickly. That's why my first comment in the thread has ***EDITED*** at the top.

I **had** hoped I altered my post quick enough that the original text would have gone by unnoticed, but alas...I wasn't quick enough. :no:

I have no memory of a 785 series from Stanton, and I didn't remember it immediately from your Handbook. Any idea what year it was introduced?

idlerwheel
06-13-2012, 11:56 AM
Hi, empirelvr

I have no memory of a 785 series from Stanton, and I didn't remember it immediately from your Handbook. Any idea what year it was introduced?

No, but I'll guess something like 1982-86. Around those years, Stanton was in the habit of introducing a cartridge in a small flurry of versions to test the waters. The variants would be dropped later. As an example, the 881 was offered in calibrated and uncalibrated versions, and with a Stereohedron or an elliptical: this makes four. The 881S remained. Stanton sent me a little pile of brochures for the range, but I can't remember when this was. They were trying to group these products in different ways, so one brochure grouped all the samarium cobalt cartridges together, the other one looked almost the same, but focused on the low-impedance models.

The company was so engineering-driven, and so secretive, that they did an especially poor job of promoting what they had to sell. I sense that their sales people were very frustrated about the way that they were muzzled. It's ironic for me to be expressing sympathy for sales people, but I have to do it here. And I have had good experiences with a special breed known as "sales engineers."

785 was not a series, but a low-impedance model that should never have been given a number like that. So, this was the "low end" of the low impedance models, with a .2 x .7 mil elliptical tip and reduced compliance vs. the others (20, if I remember correctly: the correct figure is in your Handbook). This tip size often bothers me, but in this case, it works well. I've listened to it.

SA-708
06-13-2012, 08:51 PM
2. David gave a more complete cartridge list than the one that I tend to remember. I sometimes tend to overlook the P-mount versions; they're in my book (which I only keep parts of in my head). I am bigoted against the P-mount system because the P-turntables I've measured have been off-spec. He also mentioned a late disco version.

I guess you have not measured my p-mount turntables. I have a couple of high-end Technics models that measure well against specifications, and also have adjustable tracking force so I can dial in the off-spec cartridges.

While I don't have any of the low-output models like the Pickering TLZ-7500, the Stanton & Pickering p-mount cartridges I do have generally measure up well against the T4P standards. Some of the TL series are a touch short on mass (5.9 grams vs the 6.0 gram standard) but I've seen far far worse from some other manufacturers. The Stasnton L680EL is well off T4P specs, but that was by design.

dlaloum
06-13-2012, 08:55 PM
If I understand you correctly the primary resonance is a mechanical vibration peak whose frequency depends on the mass of the moving assembly and the springiness of the suspension, and the Q of the peak depends on the lossiness of the damper material. Just wanted to get that in here for clarity. Please correct if I'm wrong.

I have read that on some Quad styli the resonance peak was intentionally moved down into the audio band because this allowed designs with the very wide bandwidth required to reproduce Quad recordings.

No you have it right.

And Quad cartridges went both ways, in some cases they brought the primary resonance down to below 15kHz, in others they moved it up beyond 45kHz.

The former was easy, the latter hard, but a cartridge with a resonance up beyond 45kHz will by any measure be an excellent performer for any sort of vinyl not just Quad!!!

idlerwheel
06-14-2012, 12:07 AM
SA-708 wrote,
I guess you have not measured my p-mount turntables. I have a couple of high-end Technics models that measure well against specifications, and also have adjustable tracking force so I can dial in the off-spec cartridges.

You're right, of course. Some really good P-turntables were made. But from what I saw, the majority of them were of questionable exellence.

I view the enterprise mostly as yet another stereo marketing hustle that the turntable companies came up with to appeal to dealers: no setup time. Pop on the cartridge, put it in the box, take the money and out the door: "Next!."

Cartridge sales often involved the salesman and the store's scamming the customer. It was a racket that's still practiced in mattress retailing. I don't want to get into the MO now. If I write a general phono book, I'll include a short chapter describing the sleazy cartridge sales game. Over on Lenco Heaven, a few people have asked me about private label Pickering cartridges in other countries, so I've learned that this hustle was not limited to the USA (where I am). Amazingly, most of the cartridges sold this way were actually OK. But when things got really floor-scraping, the products could get weird: I actually have a Pickering cartridge that was sold by Stanton with an aftermarket needle! It's a pretty good aftermarket needle, but still... Like I said, this company was not a major player in this scam.

To be fair, among the cartridges that I checked, I did not find a lowering of standards; the adaptors tended to be solid and precise. There may have been junk here, too, but none passed through my fingers. Stanton's quality was fine.

Bauhausler
06-14-2012, 06:51 AM
SA-708 wrote,
You're right, of course. Some really good P-turntables were made. But from what I saw, the majority of them were of questionable exellence.

I view the enterprise mostly as yet another stereo marketing hustle that the turntable companies came up with to appeal to dealers: no setup time. Pop on the cartridge, put it in the box, take the money and out the door: "Next!."


I somewhat agree, but I think that P-mount can be seen as an attempt to avoid serious audio quality problems and the attendant customer dissatisfaction by taking critical uncontrolled variables out of turntable setup. Consider the position of the manufacturer. For most of their customers ultimate fidelity is not the goal, and if a cart/table setup is 8% less excellent because it's P-mount it won't matter to them. OTOH if the dealer or customer didn't do a good job with the cart install and VTA, VTF, overhang or offset is out of whack it will sound terrible and the customer may mistakenly blame the manufacturer for a 'bad' product. It makes sense to try to create a foolproof setup because one thing never in short supply is fools.

SA-708
06-14-2012, 09:52 AM
You're right, of course. Some really good P-turntables were made. But from what I saw, the majority of them were of questionable exellence.

I view the enterprise mostly as yet another stereo marketing hustle that the turntable companies came up with to appeal to dealers: no setup time. Pop on the cartridge, put it in the box, take the money and out the door: "Next!."

Cartridge sales often involved the salesman and the store's scamming the customer. It was a racket that's still practiced in mattress retailing. I don't want to get into the MO now. If I write a general phono book, I'll include a short chapter describing the sleazy cartridge sales game. Over on Lenco Heaven, a few people have asked me about private label Pickering cartridges in other countries, so I've learned that this hustle was not limited to the USA (where I am). Amazingly, most of the cartridges sold this way were actually OK. But when things got really floor-scraping, the products could get weird: I actually have a Pickering cartridge that was sold by Stanton with an aftermarket needle! It's a pretty good aftermarket needle, but still... Like I said, this company was not a major player in this scam.

To be fair, among the cartridges that I checked, I did not find a lowering of standards; the adaptors tended to be solid and precise. There may have been junk here, too, but none passed through my fingers. Stanton's quality was fine.

I won't argue with you either. There were some very cheaply made p-mount turntables. I'm not sure if that can be entirely blamed on the mounting system; in the same time period (1980s) other consumer audio equipment also suffered from cutbacks in quality.

When I was a kid back in 1986, I bought a Technics SL-BD22 turntable, a low-end p-mount model (but not the lowest, as the BD20 had no pitch adjustment), from Rex TV and Appliance, a chain that also sold stereo equipment. Rex had some options for the phono cartridge to go with it, and I ended up buying a Pickering XL-28U from them, which had a DTL1 stylus. Don't remember too much about actually selecting the cartridge; they had a glass case with several models. I may well have selected the cheapest one. Never was sure why it had the crazy model name, when it seemed to be the same as the TL-1 cartridge.

If memory serves, Rex didn't even install the cartridge for me. I left the store with both boxes and installed it myself. It wasn't the greatest, but that turntable/cart combination served me well through 7 years of college. On the other hand, the JVC receiver I purchased at the same time (don't recall the model number but it had a black plastic face and no knobs) blew the IC that ran everything, about three months out of warranty. As I said, it wasn't a great era of home audio equipment.

Bauhausler
06-14-2012, 10:08 AM
There's another thread discussing P-mount tech in detail. There were some decent P-mount carts. I have a V15LT here that's internally identical to a Type IV. I'd try it out if it had a stylus. My mom's Yamaha PF-800 table came with an M111HE P-mount on a 1/2" adapter and that's a fantastic sounding deck.

idlerwheel
06-15-2012, 11:36 PM
SA, that cartridge number was a private label item that was probably labeled just for that store or chain. These cartridges were un-findable and the only place that their specific needles were listed was on the instruction sheet that came with the cartridge. As I wrote above, these were "semi-private" needles that were listed in the dealer price sheets, but never with any specifications. This is similar to "club tires" sold in warehouse stores here in the USA.

Your point about the general quality drop during the 1980s was true in my repair shop experience. I was working for a custom stereo dealer in Berkeley, California, the largest Klipschorn volume dealership in the world. These speakers are extremely revealing of dirty amplification. The boss would listen to the JVCs and say, "Listen to that Super-A output circuit. It's beautiful." Great, except that the pile of failed JVC receivers kept growing at an alarming rate. I was given one with a defect, and on opening it up, I discovered that one medium-sized circuit board was fastened at only one end and free to flap at the other. In my own business, trying to come up with a decent, honest low-power receiver was a never-ending challenge.

Bauhausler
07-22-2012, 10:31 AM
Thread back from the dead. I just got around to measuring the DCR on both of these bodies. The coils on both the 785LZE and the mystery chrome body measure 3 Ohms (+/- lead resistance and contact potential). It's possible that the bodies are internally identical and in fact I'd consider it likely.

griffithds
07-22-2012, 10:28 PM
Hello, interalian,


[QUOTE=interalian;5782280]Could be a 981 HZS with the D98S stylus too.

I'm running the Vivid Line replacement on my 981 HZS right now. I have an original D98S but sadly it has a sagging suspension which causes the grip assembly to hit the LP surface if there is the slightest ripple in the vinyl.

I had a Signet TK7 CLa with week suspension. Imposible to find a replacement stylus. I sent it off to Axel Schürholz ( Axel Schuerholz ) Bachstr. 23 B
59590 Geseke / Germany
and had the suspension replaced. He charged me $50 and I could not be any happier. Well worth the expense. 2 week turnaround time and it sound exactly the same. He also informed me that the stylus was in excellent shape. Just another plus for the $50 expense.
Regards,
Don