A comparison between an 9 year old and a new stylus

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Thomas_A, Apr 14, 2018.

  1. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    There are now and then questions that deals with when to change stylus, and when is it old etc. I just got my new SAS boron stylus after some two months travel from US to Sweden. So I made a comparison with my old and new stylus using a track that has been used previously by others. The old stylus is 9 years but not so much played. A guess is around 500-1000 hours. JICO claims a change after 500 hours, based on distortion measurements at 15 kHz.

    It is an inner track of the Smiths "Cementry Gates", having some s-sounds. The tracks below are with a new and old stylus. Can you tell which one is which?

    1: Dropbox - Cementry gates_1.wav

    2: Dropbox - Cementry gates_2.wav

    A previous thread also used the same song for comparison of two cartridges. Since it is another record it is not possible to know if differences are caused by pressing etc.

    Cartridge Comparisons on YouTube
     
  2. Russ_B66

    Russ_B66 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Vermont
    I prefer #1. I like the tune. Very cool bassline.
     
  3. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    Thank you for the vote. Yes I agree, it is a cool Smiths song, the whole record is good.
     
  4. Benzion

    Benzion "Cogito, ergo sum" Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    I prefer track 2. I think it's the old stylus - well broken in. Track 1 I think is the new stylus - needs some hours of break-in to bloom.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2018
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  5. Jimi Floyd

    Jimi Floyd Forum Resident

    Location:
    Italy
    Now, that's funny. I hear it the other way around. I prefer track 1. I think it's the old stylus - well broken in. Track 2 I think is the new stylus - needs some hour of break-in to bloom.
     
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  6. Benzion

    Benzion "Cogito, ergo sum" Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Shows you how different our ears are.
     
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  7. Helom

    Helom Forum Resident

    Location:
    U.S.
    The SAS stylus' take about 50 hours to "come on song" as they say.
     
  8. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    I could post a comparison in a few weeks to see whether there is an audible difference.
     
  9. missan

    missan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Stockholm
    Can´t really say, I guess any could be new or old. Still I would make a guess #1 is the old.
     
  10. Socalguy

    Socalguy Forum Resident

    Location:
    CA
    Track 1 seems to have more detail but it could be entirely my imagination
     
  11. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    Interesting answers so far, it seems that the difference is not that large, and I agree about that. Nevertheless there is an audible difference.
     
  12. LARGERTHAN

    LARGERTHAN Forum Resident

    Location:
    Eire
    Just had a quick listen - seems to me there's more high frequency information/ clarity in file 1. Which of course is not to say necessarily better, but certainly my preference.

    Ducking for cover, but if file 1 is your speed, one may be better served by plain old Spotify (had a quick compare with 2011 master) - it seems to go further down the road in this respect. As ever, no right or wrong here...
     
  13. skimminstones

    skimminstones Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bexley, UK
    the difference isnt massive but id prefer number 1, seems to be a tiny bit clearer although i only listened through my crappy laptop inbuilt speaker.
     
  14. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    Tonality, it is close to the 2011 Spotify version. The reason to choose this file just because it is the end of the record, and has some nasty sibilants that impose a more difficult tracking and may thus reveal more if there is a difference between the old and new stylus.
     
  15. dasacco

    dasacco Forum Resident

    Location:
    Massachussetts
    I preferred number 1. Sounded a little "tighter" to me.
     
  16. harby

    harby Forum Resident

    Location:
    Portland, OR, USA
    I thought from the title this was going to be a different type of thread

     
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  17. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    :)

    You got me there.
     
  18. 1 sounded brighter and lacked dynamics seemed louder
    2 sounded smoother and the strings seemed more alive like in the last section

    but Im listening to this while Under the influence and on crappy headphones on a sub par computer.
     
    Last edited: Apr 14, 2018
  19. lerkst

    lerkst Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Knotty Ash
    2. is more relaxed. Unoffensive to listen to. So I would say that is the older one
    1. Is more forward, more edgy. New one I guess,

    I like them both though. For a last track I think they both do well. With my first HiFi I had to stop before the record finished cos of the distortion. Buts that's a £75 Sony turntable for you
     
  20. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    Track 1 is the old stylus
    Track 2 is the new stylus

    Here are the measurements for the old and new stylus. As seen the new one and old one are very similar to about 10 kHz. Above 10 kHz the new one has more output, indicating that wear shows as HF loss above 12-13 kHz (in addition to higher distorsion). The output is a little different between channels and suggests that the left channel could do better to use less resistance (e.g. 38-42 kOhm or so). I´ll be back with some loading adjustments. Right channel has about 0.5 dB more output in these measurements at 1 kHz.

    [​IMG]
     
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  21. Thomas_A

    Thomas_A Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Uppsala, Sweden
    Sorry, I made a mistake; my answer was mixed up above:

    Track 1: new stylus
    Track 2: old stylus.

    The graph is ok.
     
  22. Night Rider

    Night Rider Well-Known Member

    Location:
    United Kingdom
    I preferred track 2.
     
  23. Benzion

    Benzion "Cogito, ergo sum" Forum Resident

    Location:
    Brooklyn, NY
    Aha! So I was right!
     
  24. Bob_in_OKC

    Bob_in_OKC Forum Resident

    Location:
    Dallas, Texas
    Preference here for Track 1. I’d probably be a little disappointed if I had this stylus and it changed to sounding like Track 2 after 50 hours.
     
  25. Track 2 sounded better to me as well
     

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