Audio Technica VM530EN Replacement

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by emjel, May 11, 2017.

  1. emjel

    emjel Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Liverpool
    My AT440 lost its stylus a couple of weeks ago and as it was still under warranty, AT (UK) asked me to send it back to them via the retailer I bought it from. They have admitted the 440 must have been faulty, but as they no longer make thus cartridge are sending a VM530EN as a replacement.

    Out of curiosity, I emailed AT US asking if this new cartridge would be okay to use with my AT120USB Turntable and they told me that the perfect replacement for the AT440 was the VM540. Is there likely to be a compatibility issue with the 530 on my turntable or will the difference be negligible and not worth worrying about.
     
  2. McLover

    McLover Forum Resident

    Location:
    East TN
    You should not have any issues with the VM 530EN as it is the AT 440 MLb replacement. Newer version. Install, set up and enjoy thy vinyl!
     
  3. spintheblack72

    spintheblack72 Forum Resident

    Just got one of these babies, took my RP3 to my local Hifi retailer and got him to fit it for me, it's replacing a Elys 2 that has been on there since I bought the TT back December 2013.

    He said it will need a good 100 hours to settle in but I'm already seeing an uptick in the sound, got my 45rpm Radiohead In Rainbows playing and I can tell the difference already, all now set for a good few years and I've upgraded my sound somewhat for £179.00.
     
    Kiko1974 likes this.
  4. George Blair

    George Blair Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR
    Is there a VM equivalent to the AT150mlx ?
     
  5. PooreBoy

    PooreBoy ~Well Respected Man~

    Location:
    East TN
    The AT VM750SH is what replaced the 150 series. I purchased it almost a year ago and I think it's better than the 150mlx. I just upgraded the stylus to the 760SLC and I'm blown away by the detail.
     
    George Blair likes this.
  6. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    The 530EN replaces the old 120E. The 540ML replaces the 440Mla/b.
     
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  7. spintheblack72

    spintheblack72 Forum Resident

    Loving how much my RP3 has improved with the VM530EN.

    Just gave my DSOTM 30th Anniversary pressing a blast and it sounds incredible and then my all time favourite album PF's WYWH, it's the Half Speed Master and it sounds divine, the new BRMC album is also sounding great.

    Can't recommend this cart & stylus enough, the Elys 2 served me well but this has taken the sound to another level, can only imagine how it will sound when it's settled in.

    Some Dylan MFSL next I think to see how that sounds, 45rpm BIABH & H61R.
     
  8. BlackCircle

    BlackCircle Forum Resident

    Location:
    Pottstown, PA
    Not the answer you are looking for, but I put a ATN150SA on my 150 and that worked out very well.
     
  9. Mr. Explorer

    Mr. Explorer Trumpet Man/Dapper Dan

    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    How would this VM530EN compare to the AT7V? They’re currently right around the same price on LPGear?
     
  10. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    Two different cartridges. IIRC the AT7V would have a stiffer compliance. What turntable are you using?
     
  11. missan

    missan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockholm
    At7v has a much better needle.
     
  12. Mr. Explorer

    Mr. Explorer Trumpet Man/Dapper Dan

    Location:
    Omaha, NE, USA
    I know they aren’t in the same family, but they’re both from AT and at similar prices right now. I’m using a Denon DP-30LII

    Thanks for the tip!
     
  13. allied333

    allied333 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Fenton, MI
    Prices at LP Gear: AT-440mlb- $390 VM-540ml- $249 VM-530en- $179 If you paid $300+ for the AT-440ml, I am thinking a refund is better than getting a cartridge worth 1/2 of what you paid.

    Note- new AT-440MLB on ebay is $247.
     
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  14. patient_ot

    patient_ot Forum Resident

    Location:
    USA
    What is the mass of your tonearm? You should try to get the best compliance match.

    Also capacitance is a huge issue with these AT carts. Do you know the capacitance of your phono pre and tonearm/TT cables?

    Re: the stylus, it's true the AT7V is better but not by much. It's a .3 x .7 on the 530EN vs. a .2 x .7 on the 7V. Not a big difference. AT's microline styli and other advanced tips are in a completely different league IME/IMHO.
     
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  15. Leonthepro

    Leonthepro Skeptically Optimistic Autodidact Debater

    Location:
    Uppsala Sweden
    100 hours for an MM cartridge? Your retailer is smokin something, and not the weak stuff either.
     
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  16. Leonthepro

    Leonthepro Skeptically Optimistic Autodidact Debater

    Location:
    Uppsala Sweden
    Makes more sense that way, just add 100 to the new series. Although the 530 should ve called the 520.
     
  17. spintheblack72

    spintheblack72 Forum Resident

    That's what he said, the sound has improved no end, I'm no expert, he's always looked after to me and been in the game for years and I didn't detect any funny odours in his shop while I was there but then again you never know.
     
  18. Leonthepro

    Leonthepro Skeptically Optimistic Autodidact Debater

    Location:
    Uppsala Sweden
    Break in happens over periods depending on what gear it is. But MMs dont take long. I can guarantee you this. Or if I must I can explain why.
     
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  19. spintheblack72

    spintheblack72 Forum Resident

    Like I said the sound has improved no end from my Elys 2 I got with my RP3, coupled with my NAD PP 2e Phono Preamplifier I also recently purchased I'm more than happy with the upgrade. I have used it pretty much every weekend since January, a good 10 or more hours a weekend.

    I only listen to vinyl when I'm off and rarely stick a record on in a working week. I usually reward myself with a black circle session on weekends, currently spinning my original pressing of Thin Lizzy's Live & Dangerous which sounds better than ever.

    Personally I think it's broken in enough now, I don't have an income to splurge on a high end set up but are of the opinion these 2 new additions have given me a considerable upgrade.

    Seriously recommend this cartridge and stylus if you have'nt got thousands to spend and it seems like a perfect fit for my RP3, £179 well spent.
     
  20. Kiko1974

    Kiko1974 Forum Resident

    Did it need spacers to lift up the arm or it worked fine just out of the box? I'm think about getting an Audio Technica VM540ML for my Goldring GR-1 TT which is a rebadged Rega Planar 1.
     
  21. spintheblack72

    spintheblack72 Forum Resident

    My Hifi dealer fitted it for me when I bought it, I don't remember him fitting anything but the cart and stylus but couldn't be sure.
     
  22. Leonthepro

    Leonthepro Skeptically Optimistic Autodidact Debater

    Location:
    Uppsala Sweden
    Are there any grey metal shims under the tonearm or cartridge mounts?
     
  23. spintheblack72

    spintheblack72 Forum Resident

    Not that I can see no.
     
  24. Leonthepro

    Leonthepro Skeptically Optimistic Autodidact Debater

    Location:
    Uppsala Sweden
    Then there are no spacers put on. But that doesnt mean there shouldnt be. And even if there should, that doesnt mean its a necessity. You should be fine @Kiko1974 maybe 2mm should do. Otherwise the counterweight on the RP1 might hit the lid when closed.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2018
    Kiko1974 likes this.
  25. Robert C

    Robert C Sound Archivist

    Location:
    London, UK
    That's what I thought. The 440 is a micro line cartridge, the 530 is not.
     
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