Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?

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Jvbadg001

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I’m using a Soundsmith Boheme and wondered if these carts give good results. Thought from WT owners. Thanks.

sebrof

Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #1 on: 15 Aug 2021, 01:52 am »
I was just on their site looking for a cartridge and I was thinking about posting the same question. From the WTL site it mentions low mass arms on their tables and from the Soundsmith site it says to get one of their high compliance carts for low mass arms.

Here's the Soundsmith Cartridge Compliance/Arm Mass chart:
https://sound-smith.com/cartridge-compliancearm-mass-chart

Looks like special order if you want a high compliance Soundsmith cart

mick wolfe

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Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #2 on: 16 Aug 2021, 02:10 am »
The first cartridge I mounted on my Amadeus was a Soundsmith SMMC2. It worked and sounded great, no issues. I used a single WTA suppied counterweight. Currently I've been using two different alum. bodied Denon 103's, both retipped by Steve at VAS. Now I use a heavy counterweight from XTC in England. That's the only change I've made to accommodate either of these carts. Both are a shade over twice the weight of the SMMC2. Once again, sounds superb. In my experience, this has been a very versatile arm. But as always, YMMV.

VinceT

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Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #3 on: 28 Oct 2021, 04:46 am »
I'm wondering this as well

I have a Dyna20x2, looking for something a little different. I always heard SS carts really image well and have a lot of air and seeing some pop up in the used market.

I also heard about the Kauri, but not much ino out there on the interwebs
« Last Edit: 28 Oct 2021, 03:13 pm by VinceT »

Kolner

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Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #4 on: 18 Dec 2021, 09:41 pm »
I am sure with the damping, the WT tonearms are quite flexible with a wide range of cartridges.

Ears Deluxe

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Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #5 on: 27 Dec 2021, 04:27 am »
I just put a SoundSmith Zephyr MIMC Star (not the ES version, but the previous one) on my Well Tempered Classic, and I'm totally in love. I was a little apprehensive, because on paper, the low compliance would suggest a mismatch with the WT arm, but in practice it works magnificently. That cartridge is exactly what my ears crave: effortless, smooth-yet-supremely clear and detailed, tonally balanced, and spacious. Records that I was pretty lukewarm on have suddenly become favorites, and old favorites are revealing new charms.

The thing that especially fascinates me is the way it manages to be smooth sounding while also providing a clarity that I've never heard equalled. Usually, those two things don't coexist in my experience. Every nuance of every note is there, not spotlighted, just clear. This benefits the expressiveness of the music, the intelligibility of lyrics, and the sense of the recording space. The dynamics, too, are dramatic without calling attention to themselves. It's also astonishingly quiet: Backgrounds are pitch black, surface noise is a thing of the past, and any clicks and pops are rendered subliminal. The music simply appears out of nothing. Often, when I first put the stylus on the record, I have to check that the amplifier is on--it's that quiet. And that's with headphones! You simply would not believe how magical this sounds with the WT table.

One thing to note: I've got the counterweight out near the end of the tonearm. It does get me to the VTF I need, but without much room to spare.

rpw

Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #6 on: 27 Dec 2021, 07:14 pm »
Did you purchase the cartridge new? I have owned a classic since 1986, and presently use a Van Den Hul Frog. I would like a cartridge that does not exacerbate the tics and surface noise, I have a large collection of used records that are not in mint condition. I am not sure the current Star would have the same attributes as your cartridge or would it better it. Any thoughts?

I use two counterweights on my arm, which keeps them closer to the pivot.

Thanks

VinceT

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Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #7 on: 27 Dec 2021, 07:48 pm »
I just put a SoundSmith Zephyr MIMC Star (not the ES version, but the previous one) on my Well Tempered Classic, and I'm totally in love. I was a little apprehensive, because on paper, the low compliance would suggest a mismatch with the WT arm, but in practice it works magnificently. That cartridge is exactly what my ears crave: effortless, smooth-yet-supremely clear and detailed, tonally balanced, and spacious. Records that I was pretty lukewarm on have suddenly become favorites, and old favorites are revealing new charms.

The thing that especially fascinates me is the way it manages to be smooth sounding while also providing a clarity that I've never heard equalled. Usually, those two things don't coexist in my experience. Every nuance of every note is there, not spotlighted, just clear. This benefits the expressiveness of the music, the intelligibility of lyrics, and the sense of the recording space. The dynamics, too, are dramatic without calling attention to themselves. It's also astonishingly quiet: Backgrounds are pitch black, surface noise is a thing of the past, and any clicks and pops are rendered subliminal. The music simply appears out of nothing. Often, when I first put the stylus on the record, I have to check that the amplifier is on--it's that quiet. And that's with headphones! You simply would not believe how magical this sounds with the WT table.

One thing to note: I've got the counterweight out near the end of the tonearm. It does get me to the VTF I need, but without much room to spare.


Thanks for the report

EkW

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Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #8 on: 27 Dec 2021, 10:34 pm »
I am pretty happy with the SS Aida. Changed from a Shure V15, mk IV I think.  Accidentally changed the azimuth when I meant to change the anti-skate to minimum last night. Now have to spend 20 minutes putting things straight. Waiting for expressimo tone arm lifter to arrive. I had one 20+ yrs ago but gave it to my brother. Tried others but they have all been too finiky. I am hoping that adding some padding to the lifter will greatly reduce the big thunk. My twice as costly lifter kept failing to remain lowered, but did so only after starting the record and getting settled down to listen. It seems to have survived being thrown down the hall. May not work reliably but it is tough.

Ears Deluxe

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Re: Anyone using soundsmith cartridges with their WT tone arms?
« Reply #9 on: 3 Jan 2022, 08:48 pm »
Did you purchase the cartridge new? I have owned a classic since 1986, and presently use a Van Den Hul Frog. I would like a cartridge that does not exacerbate the tics and surface noise, I have a large collection of used records that are not in mint condition. I am not sure the current Star would have the same attributes as your cartridge or would it better it. Any thoughts?

I use two counterweights on my arm, which keeps them closer to the pivot.

Thanks

I bought my Zephyr Star used, on Audiogon. I got it for $750, which seemed like a good price. I was a little apprehensive about buying it used--you never know how a cartridge has been treated--but it worked out. The cartridge was in perfect shape, and I take the seller at his word that it had about 300 hours on it. I think people using cartridges at this price level probably take good care of their gear.

In terms of the ES version, my understanding is that most of the changes there were to the body, not the internals. If that's correct, then I would expect it to be at least as good as mine in playing records cleanly. As I write this, I'm listening to a Phoebe Snow record I got from the $2 bin at a local shop, and it was not well cared for. In fact, it was pretty scary looking. But it's playing beautifully, with only one or two very subliminal clicks. I still can't get over that. And the marriage between arm and cartridge is a very happy one. Soundsmith says that this cartridge can be used with arms from 7 to 29 grams, which seems incredible to me, but it's clearly working on the low end of that scale.