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Thread: Denon 103r - is it worth the aggro?

  1. #121
    Join Date: Mar 2015

    Location: Finland

    Posts: 210
    I'm Kai.


    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Ok, the first thing you should know, in relation to DL-103s, is that since Denon stopped trading as Nippon Columbia [later Denon Ltd] in 2002, and merged with Marantz Japan INC, the core design of the 103 changed [moving from using Alnico to rare-earth magnets in the generator], carried out in order to save costs and maintain the current relatively low selling price, for what is a high-quality MC cartridge.
    Interesting, this is the first I hear of this, do you have a source for this information? AFAIK the basic DL-103 output voltage and coil resistance specs have stayed the same through it's life, but to keep same output and same coils but change the magnet, wouldn't you have to change everything? Unless they use the exact same magnetic structure but with some sort of alloy to match the magnetic properties of AlNiCo close enough... or changed the wiring of the coils to thinner type to keep same impedance but lower inductance to keep same output with the newer, stronger magnets. Or something. I'm not sure how that stuff works and how easy/difficult that would be to do. Btw. I'm certainly not the type of person who thinks a magnet is a magnet, and while guitarists and hifinuts alike can be sometimes a bit "conservative" and/or batshit crazy about their beliefs, there's a lot of people (myself included) who just haven't quite experienced the same tone from a guitar pickup using magnets other than alnico, not that I've spent that much effort into the subject though.

    I believe the biggest reason for the continued affordability of the DL-103 is the ability to keep chugging them out like they've been doing for decades, and especially since 2002 I doubt their production rate is that high, so it would seem on the surface of it than any major change would be more cost than profit. I'm not trying to dispute what you say, just would love to learn more of this and my google searches on the subject turned up pretty dry, other than some speculation on this very forum And even if they kept the same magnetic structure, wouldn't be surprised if they changed something else with the ownership change - or the magnets if it's a change they could get away with without redesign. Btw. if I'm not mistaken (which i very well might be...) AlNiCo magnets are not entirely stable overtime, so it seems likely a cartridge manufactured 30 years ago would sound different than a new one even if they were identical.

  2. #122
    Join Date: Sep 2014

    Location: brighton uk.

    Posts: 3,072
    I'm jamie.


    can you get a denon 103 to work on a 16g ef tonearm with an added 3g mass on the headshell end?
    My System/ Yamaha NS1000M speakers ,Pioneer PLC-590 turntable,Alphason HR-100S-MCS,Zeta tonearms,Denon 103SA Cartridge,Denon HA-500 Head Amp ,Sony 700ES Amp,Sony X555ES CD Player, Nakamichi ca5 pre amp ,

  3. #123
    Join Date: Apr 2016

    Location: souf east for work

    Posts: 867
    I'm paul.


    Quote Originally Posted by jamie123 View Post
    can you get a denon 103 to work on a 16g ef tonearm with an added 3g mass on the headshell end?
    Yes, I have used 103 and 103r on my stax with some added mass on the headshell.
    Sony STR 6055 Denon DP80 Stax UA-70 Shure Ultra 500 Zu omen Decca C4E currently in residence

    Office system, DIY CSS fullrange speakers with aurum cantus G2 ribbons Najda dsp as dac Akai AM-U02 Jvc QL-A51 direct drive turntable
    SAE1000LT leema sub. JVC Z4S cart is in the house

    Garage system another Sony receiver, cassette deck and full range drivers in free air

    System components are subject to change without warning and at the discretion of the owner.

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