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Thread: AT33-PTG

  1. #1
    Join Date: Feb 2008

    Location: North East UK

    Posts: 6,365
    I'm InSpace.

    Default AT33-PTG

    Hi All,

    I've noticed that over recent months quite a few forum member are starting to use this cartridge and I'm wondering 'why', what do you think of it', and also 'how does it compare to other cartridges you've used'?

    I use one myself, but so much is changing in my system lately that I'm finding it difficult to establish what I make of it.

    Cheers...
    Shian7
    --------------------------------------------------------

    Kudakutemo
    kudakutemo

    ari mizu-no tsuki

    Though it be be broken -
    broken again - still it's there:
    the moon on the water.

    - Choshu.

  2. #2
    Join Date: May 2008

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

    Posts: 14,557
    I'm David.

    Default

    My impression of this cartridge is that after nearly thirty years of work on the AT33 series, they hit the jackpot with this one!

    I've always respected the OC9, accepting that it's too "bleached" in sound for many and I loved the OC30 version which had a more powerful bass register (I've found one ripe for a re-tip when funds allow). The 33PTG seems to take this further.

    You'll find that supposedly "better" pickups will cost shedloads more and the Dynavectors and Ortofons for 300 or so will almost certainly sound coloured and contrived by comparison, designed for a market taste rather than a better 300 worth IMO.

    Enjoy your PTG and be comfortable in the fact that if imported and sold retail here, it would sell for 500 to 600 at todays echange rates I reckon.
    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

  3. #3
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

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

    Default

    Mikey,

    Quite simply, if it had the superb bass of the 103 (or an SPU) then it would be perfect!

    The AT33PTG is a massive unmitigated bargain.

    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!!!


  4. #4
    Join Date: Mar 2009

    Location: The New Forest

    Posts: 1,618
    I'm Steve.

    Default

    I like mine - I've not heard all that many in this price range but this one just ticks all the boxes of how I want things to sound.
    It does have fantastic bass, deep but excellent control, dynamic, clear and detailed. Seems to suit the Dynavector P75 I am using better than others too.

    Here's mine in action on the newly hand crafted headshell.

    System: Turntable : SP10 MKII slate plinth, Custom Ebony tonearm board, Arm : Fidelity Research FR64s, Cartridge : SPU Royal N. SUT : Lundahl 1:13. Phonostage : Icon Audio, Streaming RPi/Kali reclocker -> I2S -> DSP XO / Pre / 4 DAC's : WAF Najda, 5 Poweramps : 3 x EL84 SET's, 2 x D class amps on bass channels, Speakers : 5 way front loaded horn system: 2 X Tapped sub 15" LF drivers / 2 X Exponential mid bass 15" drivers / Tractrix 200Hz mid horns with JBL2482's, / Tractrix 550Hz upper wooden horns with factory refurb'd Vitavox S2's / Raal Lazy Ribbons as high frequency tweeters. Wires: good silver or good copper where best suited. DIY RCM.

    Maker of tonearm boards, armpods, Tannoy GRF style speaker cabinets, horn speakers, counterweights and more.
    For more information about my creations and products please click below

    http://fosworld.wixsite.com/magna-audio & on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/magna_audio/

  5. #5
    Join Date: May 2008

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

    Posts: 14,557
    I'm David.

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Marco View Post
    Mikey,

    Quite simply, if it had the superb bass of the 103 (or an SPU) then it would be perfect!

    The AT33PTG is a massive unmitigated bargain.

    Marco.
    Marco,

    PLEASE humour me with this (I'm an old Aspergic you know and not too flexible...)......

    If you took your Spendors off their Mana supports, what would happen? Would you get too much bass with the 103/Spu/M3D setup then?

    If you then changed to a 33PTG, would it then help restore the balance and also make CD's more inviting????????

    I'm not being cheeky and as I haven't heard your system I cannot possibly comment other than by asking what appear to be silly questions like these...
    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

  6. #6
    Join Date: Jan 2009

    Location: Arizona

    Posts: 29

    Default

    Mike,
    I was always interested in the AT33PTG.
    Last week I found a used AT33ANV on Ebay for a great price so I picked it up on impulse.
    I think the 33ANV is more similar to the 33EV that can be found on AudioCubes, but I don't imagine it's all that different from the PTG.
    I have only been playing 33ANV for 3 days, but I love it. It's magnificent. I've used a DL103 and 103R and really like them both, but this 33ANV is blowing me away.
    Compared to the 103, the bass may be a little less, but definitely not thin or lacking. This thing has punch and balls. The high end is were it really shines though. It's spectacular from my limited experience.
    Jason
    Jason
    System: Technics 1210 M5G, Denon DL103R on Audio Technica AT LH-18, Jelco SA750 tonearm, Denon HA500, Audio Technica PEQ20 phono equalizer, Rotel RSX1065 receiver, Monitor Audio S8 speakers.

  7. #7
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

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

    Default

    Hi Dave,

    PLEASE humour me with this (I'm an old Aspergic you know and not too flexible...)......
    I always 'humour' you, so this time won't be any different

    If you took your Spendors off their Mana supports, what would happen?
    And put them on the floor or on another type of stand? No matter, really, as both the former and the latter (perhaps to lesser extent) would result in them sounding crap, compared to what I'm enjoying now.

    The Mana supports used throughout my system are responsible for a huge percentage of its performance, especially the stands under the Spendors. Such big speakers in a relatively small room would boom all over the place otherwise. The Mana stands effectively isolate the speakers from the effects of the room, keeping bass sphincter-tight and controlled at all times, but also 'real' - no other speaker stands I've used so far have done this.

    Would you get too much bass with the 103/Spu/M3D setup then?
    Yes, of course, but that would be no fault of the 103 or M3D (I don't own an SPU - yet!); simply the lack of proper isolation under the speakers.

    If you then changed to a 33PTG, would it then help restore the balance and also make CD's more inviting????????
    No idea - I haven't tried it. CDs are "inviting" on my system, very actually; just not as "inviting" as records played on my modded Techy, particularly since I've fitted the M3D!

    I think you're slightly misunderstanding me. When I made the comment about bass in reference to the 103 and 33PTG, I wasn't talking about quantity of bass, but rather the quality of it, and most importantly, 'tone'.

    Don't get me wrong, the 33PTG undoubtedly has excellent bass......for a modern design. That last bit's the key. Quite simply, until you've heard an SPU, M3D or 103SA do bass in a fully optimised, sympathetically matched, system you won't 'get' where I'm coming from.

    Yesterday I was listening to an original 1956 vinyl release on Capitol of 'Swing Easy' by Frank Sinatra, and quite apart from the excellent music, I marvelled at the phenomenal quality of the recording, in terms of how musically 'real' it seemed. It used valve microphones, mixing desks, etc, throughout the (simplicity) of the recording process, compared to the bastardisation which often happens to music nowadays in studios.

    These high quality old recordings are to my ears much more faithful to musical performances than about 95% of what's produced today - certainly this fact is borne out within the contents of my own (fairly substantial) music collection, and my tastes are wide and varied. The difference is hard to put into words... I think much of it is to do with dynamic range and resolution, which simply makes these recordings sound so vivid and utterly 'wide-open'.

    In terms of the Sinatra recording I was listening to, this allowed his voice and the accompanying instrumental support by Nelson Riddle complete freedom of expression, and in the process giving the performance a level of realism which allowed one to form an emotional bond with the music, transcending the constraints of the reproduction chain - thus one was presented with living, breathing, 'live' music, as opposed to a worthy but ultimately artificial 'copy', represented in my experience by the majority of today's recordings in comparison. In short, I marvelled more at the passion and emotion of the performance than how good the sound was, consequently allowing me to make a genuine 'connection' with the music. I just wish that all recordings today had those qualities.

    It's the qualities I've described above which, when 'done well', cartridges such as the 103SA, M3D and SPU possess over their sonically 'technically accomplished' modern counterparts, such as the AT33PTG we're discussing and most of today's cartridge designs. Excellent as they are in many respects, to my ears they just don't have the 'magical' way with music presented with such aplomb by the classic cartridges I've mentioned.

    Does that help?

    I'm not being cheeky and as I haven't heard your system I cannot possibly comment other than by asking what appear to be silly questions like these...
    No worries, Dave. Continue to ask away!

    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!!!


  8. #8
    Join Date: Jun 2008

    Location: Paris, France

    Posts: 790
    I'm Peter.

    Default

    I had a listen to Nat King Cole yesterday, a recording I'd always considered too syrupy.

    I must say the AT33ptg really brought Nat into the room. It might have been "too big" in absolute terms, but it certainly was a very inviting listen.
    Intel NUC/Chevron Audio NDF16 dac/Amptastic Mini-1/Audium Comp 5
    Mains Block: Custom-HiFi-Cables PowerBlack Distribution Block (with super conditioner).
    Connected with Reference Fidelity Components Super Neptunes and Speaker Cables.
    Powered by Custom-HiFi-Cables DC2 psus

  9. #9
    Join Date: Jan 2008

    Location: Wrexham, North Wales, UK

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

    Default

    Peter, which Nat King Cole album/recording was it? I've got most of them and none sound "syrupy" - far from it!

    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!!!


  10. #10
    Join Date: Apr 2009

    Location: Oakengates, Shropshire

    Posts: 654
    I'm Richard.

    Default

    I've had a 33PTG for close to a year now. It replaced an Ortofon Kontrapunkt 'A' which was on its last legs and considering the price difference between the two cartridges, the Kontrapunkt got shown up a bit.

    When I bought my Well Tempered it came with a Dynavector XX2. I've always found DV carts a bit rich for my tastes, but vocals were so lush and vivid I stuck with it for a while. The Kontrapunkt lost the sense of space and richness that the DV had but made up for it with dynamics and excitement.

    To me, the AT33PTG combines the best of both whilst not giving much up in other areas. Probably the biggest hi-fi bargain ever.

    My only slight niggle with it is that it does seem to be quite sensitive to temperature. During the winter it was tracking beautifully at around 1.5g, but with the weather getting warmer, I've had to hike it to around 1.8g as it started sounding a bit messy.
    Rich

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