Audio Technica ART9 MC Cartridge- The Real Deal?

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by avanti1960, Dec 26, 2016.

  1. Bods1968

    Bods1968 Member

    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    I purchased an Art9 for myself as a X-mas gift, based on the wonderful reviews on the Audiogon forum Many thanks to those individuals who discovered this cartridge, and posted their results. I put maybe 50 hours on the cart. and was enjoying the sound very much as it broke in but then disaster struck, my wife wrecked the cantilever. I won't go into details but I was hoping to get some advice. I am seriously considering sending the cart. to Soundsmith ( my apologies if this should be in the Soundsmith discussion) and wanted to get people's opinions regarding any issues with this idea and what level/type of cantilever I should have installed, or should I simply ask for the best. Thanks.
     
  2. Chris Schoen

    Chris Schoen Forum Resident

    Location:
    Germantown, Md.
    May have to look at this cart when my DL-110 is worn out. Is this High Output?
     
  3. Spitfire

    Spitfire Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    Look at the first post of this thread for specs. About .5 mv so it's low output.
     
  4. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    bummer, hope you en joyed it while it was in operation!
    by all means send it to soundsmith. since the art9 had a boron cantilever, opt for the boron cantliever w/ nude contact line stylus.
    i have a dynavector cartridge that had a cantilever replaced by soundsmith and it sounds better than original.
    it took all of three months and you don't have to pay until they send an e-mail that it is ready to ship. worth the time, effort and money IMHO.
     
    HiFi Guy and mreeter like this.
  5. Bods1968

    Bods1968 Member

    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Thanks Avanti1960, appreciate the information.
     
  6. needlestein

    needlestein Active Member

    Location:
    New England
    I have a retipped Benz Micro Silver with Sound Smith's lowest priced sapphire cantilever option with the extended line contact. It is outrageously good now. One of the best cartridges I've got--easily. The more expensive options don't really seem to bring much more to the table, so I may just stick with this option for retipping needs in the future.
     
  7. MattyW

    MattyW New Member

    Location:
    Brisbane
    After reading though this rather lengthy thread I've purchased the ART9..... It will be interesting to see how it compares with my FGS retipped vintage carts (Philips GP922, Fidelity Research FR-1 Mk3F, Klipsch MCZ-7). I like what I've read about the ART9 and am hoping it has a little bit more impact than my Philips GP922, and maybe a little more midrange focus. That's really the only failing of that great cart. Sure its onlt 0.12mV though my Valab LCR-1 goes up to 72db gain and sounds great with it.

    I didn't realise you were on here needlestein? It's mjw21a from AK :)
     
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  8. needlestein

    needlestein Active Member

    Location:
    New England
    I pop up in the darnedest places! I realized it was you when I read that list of cartridges, LOL!
     
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  9. Classicrock

    Classicrock Forum Resident

    Location:
    South West, UK.
    Claim of your household insurance if you have cover. Otherwise I think trading in for a replacement would not cost a lot more than a re-tip/ cantilever and you would have the original cartridge. Soundsmith will inevitably make it something slightly different as the ML is an AT exclusive. Also banish the wife from the audio room !
     
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  10. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    Let us know how you like it! Mine is going on a year in service and sounds awesome!
     
    HiFi Guy likes this.
  11. toddrhodes

    toddrhodes Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Bend, IN
    Agreed! I'm on about 7 months and my biggest concern is saving up for another one to replace it. It fits my tastes so well, just can't imagine having to shop for another one.
     
    ted321 and HiFi Guy like this.
  12. MattyW

    MattyW New Member

    Location:
    Brisbane
    Haha, yes they're not the most common cartridges :)

    Not a bad idea..... Having said that if you go for a retip you could go to a nice boron cantilever and FGS tip..... Quite possibly a real step up from the cart in its stock form
     
  13. Methodical

    Methodical Active Member

    Location:
    MD
    Claiming under homeowner insurance is a bad idea. Use your homeowners insurance for real disasters and not this. It will eventually bite you in the butt.
     
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  14. Bods1968

    Bods1968 Member

    Location:
    Toronto, Canada
    Unfortunately, I couldn't banish the Mrs. She was the one who really introduced me to Dylan. She loves Sabbath, Zeppelin, Stones, all the great ones. I managed to introduce her to some Prog, that she now loves like early Genesis, Yes etc. She also doesn't give me a hard time when I am purchasing some of the pricey new reissues from Intervention, Mobile Fidelty. I don't think there are too many women that enjoy the same music as I do. I could be wrong though.
     
    MattyW likes this.
  15. MattyW

    MattyW New Member

    Location:
    Brisbane
    Ok, first impressions of the ART9..... Out of the box at 100 ohms it sounds very much like my Philips GP922.... Maybe the vocals are slightly more prominent? Basically prior to break in this thing equals my very best cart. That's an excellent result considering its supposed to improve quite a bit with break in. I won't have to give up anything while waiting to get the best from it :)
     
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  16. MattyW

    MattyW New Member

    Location:
    Brisbane
    Seems my azimuth was slightly out. Also it appears that this cart is far far better bypassing my SUT and going straight into my Valab LCR-1 @ 100 ohms and 72db gain.... I may try dropping that back to sixty something as others have suggested
     
    HiFi Guy likes this.
  17. MattyW

    MattyW New Member

    Location:
    Brisbane
    Dropped it back to 66db.... Now a deeper, more natural sound stage
     
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  18. blakep

    blakep Forum Resident

    If I had that phono stage and cartridge I'd keep dropping.

    All the way to 58 dB. Which I would expect would result in the most realistic and natural sound.
     
  19. Catcher10

    Catcher10 Forum Resident

    Drop it......more/high gain is not the answer. You should end up in the 56dB range, depending on the quality of your phono stage.

    Nice cartridge!
     
  20. toddrhodes

    toddrhodes Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Bend, IN
    FWIW, I am now running my Art 9 at 64 dB as that's the only option on my Herron VTPH-2. Also not running any loading resistors. It sounds absolutely fabulous and based on Keith's design, is utterly silent unless I crank the volume to 11 with nothing playing.
     
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  21. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    Herron now, NICE! Pretty soon you'll make the jump to a tube linestage!
     
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  22. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    Running mine at 66 db and it sounds phenomenal. 56db does not give it enough slam and makes the presentation to warm and anemic.

    There are different ways to calculate gain and for example- this thread references an article in TAS about gain calculations. With most MC cartridges they sound better using those gain guidelines.

    Rethinking Phono Preamp Gain Settings
     
  23. MattyW

    MattyW New Member

    Location:
    Brisbane
    The Valab LCR-1 gives access to 40, 52, 58, 60, 62 63.5, 65, 66.5, 67.5, 69, 70, 71 and 72db. Loading options are 22, 23, 29, 30, 76, 83, 99, 100, 330, 500, 1k and 47k. Plenty of gain and loading options. I may set gain at 58db. Someone on another forum mentioned loading at about 300 ohms gave added body and punch. If I find it lacking at lower gain I may try this. Tests have shown a perfect RIAA curve on this stage and it has an incredibly low noise floor.
     
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  24. toddrhodes

    toddrhodes Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Bend, IN
    My buddy may let me borrow an Audible Illusions pre, to try out. Not sure what model, however. My current Pre is really a pre/pro and leaves me in a quandary. It's a VERY nice preamp/processor (Anthem Statement D2). It has a function that, with a few button presses, allows me to record vinyl with a very nice ADC, 24/96 direct digital into my PC so no further signal transormation is needed. I've listened to albums both ways and the two are indistinguishable to my ears (the actual vinyl played through digitization in the pre/pro vs the recorded audio through Roon on my PC back out to the Anthem via digital coax).

    The catch is, I now have my room situated to where I no longer need bass management or room correction. So when I listen to vinyl in pure analog all the way to the amp (with subs still looped in), it now sounds better than when I was digitizing through the Anthem. Again, I can flip that on and off very quickly and the differences are noticeable. So, I'm thinking/wondering if a really nice preamp would work well for me, and I would only press the Anthem into service when I wanted to listen to digital music or record vinyl. Decisions, decision.
     
  25. Spitfire

    Spitfire Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    I use 66db on my Simaudio 310LP. I think it sounds great at that gain. I think I started lower but went to 66db pretty quickly.
     

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