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Thread: Whats The Best Sounding Tonearm Vintage/Recent Regardless of Price?

  1. #41
    Join Date: May 2012

    Location: Toulouse

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    I'm GettingFunky.

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    I like the Funk FXR arms. They just get out of the way of things and let the cartridge get on with doing its thing.
    Contemplating life, the universe and use of HiFi forums.

    Life is too short to worry about the opinion of others.

  2. #42
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Norwich

    Posts: 706
    I'm Mike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post

    ....... whenever you strap a 'V' onto a Michell Gyro (or Orbe). For some reason (providing the cartridge choice is right), it just works

    Marco.
    Yep ! It does, but it's still a very neutral arm (on an Orbe), and even sounded good on two Lyras (my friend also) but I could never, with hindsight, figure out why. The Five is a superb arm, now over 25 years in existence, but not sure I would revert (to a Five-twelve, that is, as I wouldn't entertain another 9 inch).

  3. #43
    Join Date: Sep 2010

    Location: Vienna

    Posts: 106
    I'm Michael.

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    My Glanz trounced the SME V!
    The Glanz is a dream arm for SPUs (Hamada San is a great fan of SPUs) but it’s the arm that gets a grip on my EMT JSD 5 like the SME never could
    Also I prefer removable headshell arms as in the 2 months I have it now I played 3 catridges (2x SPU, 1x EMT) with it.

  4. #44
    Join Date: Feb 2010

    Location: Berkshire, UK

    Posts: 3,014
    I'm Tom.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CageyH View Post
    I like the Funk FXR arms. They just get out of the way of things and let the cartridge get on with doing its thing.
    Yes I borrowed one for a bit and liked what it did with several cartridges. Not my usual kind of thing at all and not practical for me - but very musical.
    Main: Speakers 'RFC' Tannoy Canterburys / custom crossovers; Amp - Radford STA100; Pre EAR 912; Vinyl: Thorens TD124 MkII + Ikeda IT345-CR1 / Ikeda IT-407 tonearms; Cartridges Stereo - Miyajima Madake, Ortofon SPU Royal N, Ikeda 9C III, SAEC/Excel C3; Mono - Miyajimas - Zero 0.7, Premium 1.0, Sonovox MC-4 1.0, Edison '78' 4.0 conical, and Shure M44 strapped for mono with several Expert Stylus conicals for different eras of 78s; Phono stage and SUT from EAR 912; Esoteric Sound Re-Equalizer for equalisation of early mono and 78, switchable in from tape loop; Digital: Audio Note CDT2/II transport, heavily modded AN Kit DAC + Mutec MC3+USB.

    Study: Speakers - Tannoy DC6; Amp: Pass Aleph 'Mini'; preamp - Firebottle custom; Vinyl: Garrard 401 with AT1503 tonearm and vintage Ortofon SL-15e with matching Ortofon 2-15k SUT; Phono Stage: Firebottle Plus; Digital - Trichord Genesis III CDP + Arcam rBlink; Schiit Multibit DAC.

  5. #45
    Join Date: Apr 2011

    Location: London

    Posts: 3,062
    I'm Robert.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Reed View Post
    Yep ! It does, but it's still a very neutral arm (on an Orbe), and even sounded good on two Lyras (my friend also) but I could never, with hindsight, figure out why. The Five is a superb arm, now over 25 years in existence, but not sure I would revert (to a Five-twelve, that is, as I wouldn't entertain another 9 inch).
    Why Mike ? I'm just trying to learn more about the 12 inch over 9, 10 inch arm thing
    My System:
    Amplification - Sansui AU-alpha 707 DR
    Turntable - Modified Technics SL1210 MK5G
    Mike New precision bearing, bearing base plate, ETP Platter
    Micro Seiki MA-202 tonearm, rewired, hybrid ceramic bearings
    Ortofon Cadenza Black moving coil cartridge
    Yannis Tome 423.5 Silver-Litz tonearm cable with KLEI Pure Silver Harmony plugs
    Ebony armboard
    Audio Technica MS-8 Magnesium headshell, Ortofon pure silver headshell leads
    Isonoe Isolation Feet
    Paul Hynes SR7EHD PSU (plus regulator modules), DCSXL pure-silver DC lead with Jaegar low impedance connector
    CDP - Pioneer PD-91
    Speakers - Spendor D7
    QED Silver Spiral speaker cable, Airlock plugs - bare wire amp end.
    Mains - Ultra Pure silver plated un-switched socket, Missing link EPS 500 silver plated plugs with Hi-Fi Tuning gold plated silver ceramic 13 amp fuses

  6. #46
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Norwich

    Posts: 706
    I'm Mike.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RobbieGong View Post
    Why Mike ? I'm just trying to learn more about the 12 inch over 9, 10 inch arm thing
    Limited experience here, Robbie, but apart from an SME 3012 in 1970 I've had 9" arms on lots of decks, mainly, I s'pose, because the decks weren't cut out for 12" arms. However, when I changed from Orbe/Five to N.A. Dais, I decided to get two 12" arms; one unipivot and one gimbal, to 'taste the different flavour'.

    The ease of handling/cueing and general feel of the extra 3" was immediately apparent, so that's the practical side. I also think the longer arms are a better aesthetic fit to, at least, my deck. Sound-wise, the 12" is slightly more laid-back, but gives a much more sure-footed presentation in the inner grooves. Obviously the arm is only part of the equation, but sonically, my findings have been echoed by many others.

    Also, the 12" arm will have a bit more mass than the shorter equivalent, which would be handy for low compliance m/coils. There is a 'rightness' in handling a 12" arm compared to the shorter one which only becomes apparent when you experience it. I'm getting on a bit, and I find this practicality to also be a safety benefit in cueing and lifting off.

    If you have one of the old idler decks (Garrard, Goldring (as I had)) or a mass decks (N.A., T.W.Acustic), a 12" arm is de rigeur, i.m.o. A suspended deck like Linn or Michell ? Not advisable. 'Orses for courses !.

  7. #47
    Join Date: Jul 2016

    Location: Ferndown, Dorset, UK

    Posts: 177
    I'm Brook.

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    Possibly the discussion has moved on from this, & in any case I am not sure it would work visually on a vintage deck, but I recently heard a Kuzma Four Point with a lowly MM cartridge & I was absolutely staggered by how good it was, if fact it has made me stop & re-think my plans moving forwards. Just answering the bit in the OP about the "best sounding arms".
    Last edited by speedracer; 03-06-2018 at 11:11. Reason: spooling.

  8. #48
    Join Date: Feb 2010

    Location: Berkshire, UK

    Posts: 3,014
    I'm Tom.

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    Quote Originally Posted by speedracer View Post
    Possibly the discussion has moved on from this, & in any case I am not sure it would work visually on a vintage deck, but I recently heard a Kuzma Four Point with a lowly MM cartridge & I was absolutely staggered by how good it was, if fact it has made me stop & re-think my plans moving forwards. Just answering the bit in the OP about the "best sounding arms".
    That's a really good point. A great deck and tonearm into a high-end phono stage can lift a competent but humble cartridge way beyond what you'd expect its performance to be. I sometimes do that trick with Shure SC35C or Tonar Diabolic E (both around 45-worth), starting listening off with one of these - on the TD124 on one of the Ikeda arms, they both really shine. But the performance is lifted again, substantially, when you add a quality moving coil.
    Main: Speakers 'RFC' Tannoy Canterburys / custom crossovers; Amp - Radford STA100; Pre EAR 912; Vinyl: Thorens TD124 MkII + Ikeda IT345-CR1 / Ikeda IT-407 tonearms; Cartridges Stereo - Miyajima Madake, Ortofon SPU Royal N, Ikeda 9C III, SAEC/Excel C3; Mono - Miyajimas - Zero 0.7, Premium 1.0, Sonovox MC-4 1.0, Edison '78' 4.0 conical, and Shure M44 strapped for mono with several Expert Stylus conicals for different eras of 78s; Phono stage and SUT from EAR 912; Esoteric Sound Re-Equalizer for equalisation of early mono and 78, switchable in from tape loop; Digital: Audio Note CDT2/II transport, heavily modded AN Kit DAC + Mutec MC3+USB.

    Study: Speakers - Tannoy DC6; Amp: Pass Aleph 'Mini'; preamp - Firebottle custom; Vinyl: Garrard 401 with AT1503 tonearm and vintage Ortofon SL-15e with matching Ortofon 2-15k SUT; Phono Stage: Firebottle Plus; Digital - Trichord Genesis III CDP + Arcam rBlink; Schiit Multibit DAC.

  9. #49
    Join Date: Apr 2008

    Location: Warrington

    Posts: 2,926
    I'm Neil.

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    Quote Originally Posted by speedracer View Post
    Possibly the discussion has moved on from this, & in any case I am not sure it would work visually on a vintage deck, but I recently heard a Kuzma Four Point with a lowly MM cartridge & I was absolutely staggered by how good it was, if fact it has made me stop & re-think my plans moving forwards. Just answering the bit in the OP about the "best sounding arms".
    I think sometimes Definitive Audio have used a Reson Reca for demos.
    Mana Acoustics Racks / Bright Star IsoNodes Decoupling >> Custom Silent Media Server >> Halide Bridge USB (with AQVOX USB power) >> Pedja Rogic's Audial Model S DAC + Pioneer PL-71 turntable / Vista Audio phono-1 mk II / Denon PCL-5 headshell / Reson Reca >> LFD DLS >> LFD PA2M (SE) >> Royd RR3s.

  10. #50
    Join Date: May 2016

    Location: Gloucestershire

    Posts: 330
    I'm Ian.

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    OK, a bit left field but how about an RS-A1? Maybe not the best but superb and incredibly flexible in use - just plonk it on the deck and wonder how the hell does it sound so good. My greatest hifi regret is selling mine.


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