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Thread: The Alphason has landed!

  1. #141
    Join Date: Apr 2012

    Location: Southall, West London

    Posts: 29,479
    I'm Geoff.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CageyH View Post
    I used to be uncertain, but now I am not so sure.

    I take it that's definite?
    Mr. Tact!

    Main system: MMs/ADCs/Low output MC's/One rare Japanese SUT/One scarce British phono stage/various tonearms/hefty Japanese DD TT and hefty Japanese BD TT and small British BD TT. 4 CD players/2 jitter buster/2 DACs/Valve buffer. TVC stepped attenuator or valve pre-amp or solid state pre-amp. Current dumping power-amp or either of two Class A SS power-amp or Class A EL34 valve monos or big Japanese (part Class A) integrated. Big dual concentric speakers/Smaller dual concentric speakers/Two way British compacts and full range speakers, amongst others. And too much more to list!

  2. #142
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 3,511
    I'm Oliver.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CageyH View Post
    I used to be uncertain, but now I am not so sure.

    😂😂

    Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk
    Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 tonearm > ZYX R50 Bloom cartridge > Jolida JD9 MKII > Firebottle Monoblocks > Creek OBH-11SE Headphone Amp > IXOS Speaker Cables > Pioneer CS-77A Speakers

  3. #143
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 3,511
    I'm Oliver.

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    Well a few hours of listening with the new arm and replaced opamps has shown me one thing. The Alphason is incredibly good. There was a feeling of sadness when I packed the Mission ready for posting last night but listening today, I haven't missed it so looks like I finally got round to making the right decision!

    I look forward to hearing how the new owner of the Mission gets on with it and after a chat, I think the thread he'll create will make for good reading.

    Thanks for all of your help and input.

    Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk
    Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 tonearm > ZYX R50 Bloom cartridge > Jolida JD9 MKII > Firebottle Monoblocks > Creek OBH-11SE Headphone Amp > IXOS Speaker Cables > Pioneer CS-77A Speakers

  4. #144
    Join Date: Sep 2014

    Location: brighton uk.

    Posts: 2,673
    I'm jamie.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bigman80 View Post
    Theres absolutely nothing missing from my Mission 774/ZYX combo either mate, but theres a hole left from Jamies (lack of) comparison between the two a few weeks back ����


    Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk
    come on then Shakespeare lets have your 14 page write up!
    My System/ Yamaha NS1000M speakers, Townsend Elite rock 2 turntable,,Alphason HR-100S-MCS tonearm,Ortofon Cadenza Black,Decca C4E cartridge ,Sony 700ES Amp,Sony X555ES CD Player, Nakamichi ca5 pre amp ,

  5. #145
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 3,511
    I'm Oliver.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamie123 View Post
    come on then Shakespeare lets have your 14 page write up!
    Hahaha I knew that'd come back to bite me !!!

    Leave it with me.

    Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk
    Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 tonearm > ZYX R50 Bloom cartridge > Jolida JD9 MKII > Firebottle Monoblocks > Creek OBH-11SE Headphone Amp > IXOS Speaker Cables > Pioneer CS-77A Speakers

  6. #146
    Join Date: Oct 2015

    Location: Pulborough, West Sussex, UK

    Posts: 575
    I'm Ian.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jamie123 View Post
    come on then Shakespeare lets have your 14 page write up!
    My stuff; Toshiba SR-370/Mission 774 /Ortofon Quintet Black, Cambridge CXC CD transport/Musical Fidelity X DAC/Musical Fidelity X10v3 tube buffer, Musical Fidelity A3, Nakamichi CA-5E pre amp, Acoustic Solutions FM/DAB tuner, Mordaunt Short Signifer, Klotz MC5000/MS audio, NVA LS5

  7. #147
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 3,511
    I'm Oliver.

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    Rather than write a comparison piece, i am going to collate my opinion and my experiences during this journey.

    So, First up, Lets go with:

    Aesthetics,

    No prizes for guessing which one wins! The Alphason is stunning. It has all the desirability and beauty one would expect upon seeing it in the flesh. Its very sleek, eye catching and probably wouldn't look out of place on most TT's

    On the other side, The Mission is very attractive, to me at least. I really like the look. Its designed to do its job without any extra embellishment and that theme kind of runs throughout my thinking with the 774.

    Flexibility and adjustments

    The winner here is the 774. It is possibly the most adjustable arm around. VTA, Azimuth, VTF, Damping and rewiring with this arm is an absolute walk in the park. It can take almost any Cart and with some fine tuning, will perform at an elite level. There are a few DIY mods available too which push this arm into the Super arm territory and it can quite easily belong there.

    The Alphason has VTA and VTF. Looks a bit devoid of features in comparison!


    DIY-able?

    I have no technical skills at all but the 774 was never in any danger. everything is easily accessible and swapping interconnects was as simple as one can hope for, if you have a soldering station. The Alphason is nowhere near DIY friendly and should be fettled by a professional. For me the 774 wins this section too.

    Sound

    Well, this is the only section that should matter, isnt it?

    First up, this isnt as wide a gap as one would have thought. I plugged the Alphason in and expected it to blow my mind and make the 774 look like a toy, but it didn't . That was in part down to a dodgy Opamp in the phono stage. Once this was fixed, the Alphason showed why its considered one of the best arms ever made.

    At this point, i want to say very clearly, that i tested both arms thoroughly by ear only.

    To my ears, the Mission 774 is incredibly agile, digs out every inch of detail possible and creates the sense of it not even being on the TT. It is transparent and invites you into the recording. I am a huge fan of this arm and would happily buy another in the future, if i needed another arm for any reason. Detail, Detail, Detail. It is accurate and precise. Bass is tighter than tights and treble is delivered with the accuracy of a sniper. In my opinion, the only area it fell down to the Alphason was Musicality, depth and soundstage.

    The Alphason, oh Alphason! It HAS blown my mind. Alan and i listened to a track called "Pacific AM" by Yello. I was transported from my chair to a pirate ship, somewhere near Persia during an epic storm. It was phenomenal. Now, i don't want to exaggerate, but seriously, i was there. On the deck, getting sprayed by salty sea spray from the waves. It was a crazy five minutes. Actually, it was exhilarating! In my time with the 774, i hadn't ever felt like that and this is where the Alphason is a step ahead. The soundstage now feels like my room is a concert hall. The 774 has the knack of sounding bigger than it should, but not to this extent. The Alphason is definitely producing lower frequencies too, its very sub like and there is a delicacy to it. My only criticism of the Alphason is that the bass doesn't feel quite as tight as the 774. The Alphason cant match the attack the 774 delivers bass with, but the 774 doesn't get a low, so how does one choose?

    Midrange is a close affair too. The best way to describe it is, the 774 is solid state and the Alphason is all Valve. There is very little to choose from, but those who know the sweet sound of midrange through a valve amp, also know its the best way to hear it. The 774 is more than capable of producing a sweet midrange but just not to this degree. Sweetner compared to syrup.

    Treble is a bit of a contentious point to me, it has to sound realistic. Cymbals should sound metallic, shakers should sound wooden and i want to hear the breath in vocals. Both arms do this very very well and its hard to pick a winner. The treble is probably a bit more natural with the Alphason but the 774 is only a hair away, if that.


    Verdict

    In my opinion, you can not buy a better tonearm than the Mission 774 for less than 250. Seriously, it is a giant killing, understated, underappreciated piece of British history. It absolutely destroyed a Rega 250, Sony PU7 and an SME 3009 S2. It is a wonderful arm and i would recommend it to anyone who was looking around that price range.

    The Alphason is a better arm IMO but not by much and certainly not X2 as good as the price suggests. I paid 600 for mine and its not 350 better than the Mission BUT it is better. I haven't heard vinyl sound as good as this from any TT.

    If either arm comes up in your budget and you need or want an arm, buy one.


    Quick thanks to, Geoff, Alan and Jamie who contributed in someway to get this arm up and running on my TT. This is a great forum. Thanks guys.
    Last edited by Bigman80; 11-07-2017 at 17:56.
    Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 tonearm > ZYX R50 Bloom cartridge > Jolida JD9 MKII > Firebottle Monoblocks > Creek OBH-11SE Headphone Amp > IXOS Speaker Cables > Pioneer CS-77A Speakers

  8. #148
    Join Date: Oct 2012

    Location: The Black Country

    Posts: 3,761
    I'm Alan.

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    Cracking descriptions there Oli

    Just a little correction, the Yello track was 'Pacific AM', but wasn't it astounding

  9. #149
    Join Date: Nov 2015

    Location: Wolverhampton

    Posts: 3,511
    I'm Oliver.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Firebottle View Post
    Cracking descriptions there Oli

    Just a little correction, the Yello track was 'Pacific AM', but wasn't it astounding
    Thanks Al, I only glanced at the listing as you put the LP away. It was outstanding.

    Sent from my EVA-L09 using Tapatalk
    Technics SP10 MK2 > Phonomac AT-1010 tonearm > ZYX R50 Bloom cartridge > Jolida JD9 MKII > Firebottle Monoblocks > Creek OBH-11SE Headphone Amp > IXOS Speaker Cables > Pioneer CS-77A Speakers

  10. #150
    Join Date: Sep 2014

    Location: Northern Ireland

    Posts: 678
    I'm John.

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    Great write up Oliver. Glad it's working for you.

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