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Thread: Headshell mass - please explain

  1. #1
    Join Date: Sep 2008

    Location: norwich

    Posts: 246

    Default Headshell mass - please explain

    Could someone please explain the importance of getting this right and what could happen if it's wrong.
    ---------------------------------------------------
    recovering audioholic

    Technics: SL 1210 mk2 / KAB PS1200 psu /Trans-fi Terminator / AT-OC9MLII / WD ph3s /Bluesound node 2i/Musical Fidelity Ms3i/ WADkit 6550 / Tannoy revolution xt8f

    Gareth.

  2. #2
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 110,089
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default

    Hi Gareth,

    Just listen to a DL-103 on a lightweight headshell and all will be revealed! Only very low compliance cartridges are badly affected. Fortunately (for ease of use) most cartridges made these days are medium to high compliance, so the headshells on most arms are adequate

    Marco.
    Main System

    Turntable: Heavily-modified Technics SL-1210MK5G [Mike New bearing/ETP platter/Paul Hynes SR7 PSU & reg mods]. Funk Firm APM Achromat/Nagaoka GL-601 Crystal Record Weight/Isonoe feet & boots/Ortofon RS-212D/Denon DL-103GL in Denon PCL-300 headshell with Funk Firm Houdini/Kondo SL-115 pure-silver cartridge leads.

    Paul Hynes MC head amp/SR5 PSU. Also modded Lentek head amp/Denon AU-310 SUT.

    Other Cartridges: Nippon Columbia (NOS 1987) Denon DL-103. USA-made Shure SC35C with NOS stylus. Goldring G820 with NOS stylus. Shure M55E with NOS stylus.

    CD Player: Audiocom-modified Sony X-777ES/DAS-R1 DAC.

    Tape Deck: Tandberg TCD 310, fully restored and recalibrated as new, by RDE, plus upgraded with heads from the TCD-420a. Also with matching TM4 Norway microphones.

    Preamps: Heavily-modified Croft Charisma-X. LDR Stereo Coffee. Power Amps: Tube Distinctions Copper Amp fitted with Tungsol KT-150s. Quad 306.

    Cables & Sundries: Mark Grant HDX1 interconnects and digital coaxial cable, plus Mark Grant 6mm UP-LCOFC Van Damme speaker cable. MCRU 'Ultimate' mains leads. Lehmann clone headphone amp with vintage Koss PRO-4AAA headphones.

    Tube Distinctions digital noise filter. VPI HW16.5 record cleaning machine.

    Speakers: Tannoy 15MGs in Lockwood cabinets with modified crossovers. 1967 Celestion Ditton 15.


    Protect your HUMAN RIGHTS and REFUSE ANY *MANDATORY* VACCINE FOR COVID-19!

    Also **SAY NO** to unjust 'vaccine passports' or certificates, which are totally incompatible with a FREE society!!!


  3. #3
    Join Date: Sep 2008

    Location: norwich

    Posts: 246

    Default

    So in effect it can end up being a suck it and see thing?
    If it is that's hunky dory. I'm having a few meh moments with my new cart and i'm covering all bases before i give it the heave-ho
    any way
    cheers fella
    ---------------------------------------------------
    recovering audioholic

    Technics: SL 1210 mk2 / KAB PS1200 psu /Trans-fi Terminator / AT-OC9MLII / WD ph3s /Bluesound node 2i/Musical Fidelity Ms3i/ WADkit 6550 / Tannoy revolution xt8f

    Gareth.

  4. #4
    Join Date: Nov 2008

    Posts: 126

    Default

    i think the headshell mass is just part of the whole cartridge/tonearm matching discussion ... to get the right effective tonearm mass (which includes the headshell mass) to match the compliance of your cart. there's an excel spreadsheet floating around in cyberspace somewhere which helps with calculating whether your setup ends up in the desirable resonance frequency, if you've got the right numbers for your gear available.

    however, it's all subjective as usual, and end of the day, your ears tell the best story.
    kelvin.

    .my salvation.
    kab technics sl-1200mkII/AT33PTG/achromat . philips dvd963sa (modded analogue stage) as cdp . pioneer tx-410 stereo tuner
    trichord dino phono preamp + dino ncpsu . astintrew at2000+ integrated amp
    alr-jordan note 3

  5. #5
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

    Posts: 110,089
    I'm AudioAl'sArbiterForPISHANTO.

    Default T/T setting-up site

    This site contains a lot of useful info:

    http://www.soundfountain.com/amb/ttadjust.html



    Marco.
    Main System

    Turntable: Heavily-modified Technics SL-1210MK5G [Mike New bearing/ETP platter/Paul Hynes SR7 PSU & reg mods]. Funk Firm APM Achromat/Nagaoka GL-601 Crystal Record Weight/Isonoe feet & boots/Ortofon RS-212D/Denon DL-103GL in Denon PCL-300 headshell with Funk Firm Houdini/Kondo SL-115 pure-silver cartridge leads.

    Paul Hynes MC head amp/SR5 PSU. Also modded Lentek head amp/Denon AU-310 SUT.

    Other Cartridges: Nippon Columbia (NOS 1987) Denon DL-103. USA-made Shure SC35C with NOS stylus. Goldring G820 with NOS stylus. Shure M55E with NOS stylus.

    CD Player: Audiocom-modified Sony X-777ES/DAS-R1 DAC.

    Tape Deck: Tandberg TCD 310, fully restored and recalibrated as new, by RDE, plus upgraded with heads from the TCD-420a. Also with matching TM4 Norway microphones.

    Preamps: Heavily-modified Croft Charisma-X. LDR Stereo Coffee. Power Amps: Tube Distinctions Copper Amp fitted with Tungsol KT-150s. Quad 306.

    Cables & Sundries: Mark Grant HDX1 interconnects and digital coaxial cable, plus Mark Grant 6mm UP-LCOFC Van Damme speaker cable. MCRU 'Ultimate' mains leads. Lehmann clone headphone amp with vintage Koss PRO-4AAA headphones.

    Tube Distinctions digital noise filter. VPI HW16.5 record cleaning machine.

    Speakers: Tannoy 15MGs in Lockwood cabinets with modified crossovers. 1967 Celestion Ditton 15.


    Protect your HUMAN RIGHTS and REFUSE ANY *MANDATORY* VACCINE FOR COVID-19!

    Also **SAY NO** to unjust 'vaccine passports' or certificates, which are totally incompatible with a FREE society!!!


  6. #6
    Join Date: May 2008

    Location: A Strangely Isolated Place in Suffolk with far away trains passing by...

    Posts: 14,557
    I'm David.

    Default

    I reckon it goes even deeper than that.

    According to numerous HiFi Choice tests in the eighties, detachable headshell type arms can have significant resonances in the lower mid, due to the joint between arm tube and shell. making the shell heavier seems to tone this bit down, or make it less significant with mc type cartridges.

    As Marco says, using a higher compliance pickup that doesn't feed so much energy into the arm in the first place, these "problems" don't really exist.

    It's also been said (by Linn to me once) that a cheaper detachable head arm like the old LVV actually performs better with a lighter, flexible shell and leaving the rubber washer in place, as the energy is better split up over the frequency band and less is directly transmitted into the bearings (and arm board). Of course, well made examples like the Technics original and the lovely Jelco 750 (I'd love one of those) probably don't need such coddling.....
    Tear down these walls; Cut the ties that held me
    Crying out at the top of my voice; Tell me now if you can hear me

  7. #7
    Join Date: Feb 2009

    Location: Bristol, UK

    Posts: 719
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    This site contains a lot of useful info:

    http://www.soundfountain.com/amb/ttadjust.html



    Marco.
    Amazing. That is just the sort of thing I need to read!!

  8. #8
    Join Date: Nov 2008

    Posts: 126

    Default

    he's not the analogue boy for nothing ...
    kelvin.

    .my salvation.
    kab technics sl-1200mkII/AT33PTG/achromat . philips dvd963sa (modded analogue stage) as cdp . pioneer tx-410 stereo tuner
    trichord dino phono preamp + dino ncpsu . astintrew at2000+ integrated amp
    alr-jordan note 3

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