AT VM540ML Unusable

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by Rattlin' Bones, Sep 6, 2021.

  1. Lenny99

    Lenny99 The truth sets you free.

    Location:
    Clarksburg WV
    That’s what I use. It was recommended by various people here. It works better than anything else I have used.
     
    quadjoe likes this.
  2. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    The line contact styli are typically going to need about 1.25 the A-S of elliptical.

    Let distortion during very loud passages be your final guide.
     
  3. csgreene

    csgreene Forum Resident

    Location:
    Idaho, USA
    Based on what info from whom? I've seen this claim posted here before but have missed how this was arrived at.
     
  4. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    AS ~ u sin(offset ang) TF
    Let u = 0.5, offset 22 deg, TF 2 gm
    AS ~ 0.37 gm

    Does it have more drag/friction?
    Since it has a larger side contact area, more force?

    All Anti-skating mechanisms are wrong!
    If “less is better than more”, use a line contact stylus and set the anti-skating amount ¾ to ½ of the VTF amount. Anti-skating will be insufficient at the beginning but will be a closer match as the tonearm approaches the middle of the record. This could be totally off base depending on the design of the tonearm mechanism.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2021
    Spin Doctor likes this.
  5. Spin Doctor

    Spin Doctor Forum Resident

    Through listening and observation, I came to the conclusion that the 540 doesn't like a lot of anti-skate. That's as scientific as I ever got with it, and is the only advice I give to people who are considering buying one. Apparently my observations are confirmed with the mathematics.
     
  6. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    This was an assertion made by Audio Technica in their manual for I believe the AT12S.

    Excerpt:

    [​IMG]

    There are apparently some papers in the journal of the Audio Engineering Society which also mention 1.25 and even higher, but I do not have access to these because I'm not a member.

    Some of my albums with the most highly modulated passages will distort pretty badly in the right channel with a 1:1 setting, though. I've been using 1.25x to good effect but might even go a little higher when I have some time.
     
  7. csgreene

    csgreene Forum Resident

    Location:
    Idaho, USA
    So why does A-T suggest matching tracking weight to amount of anti-skate in the 540ml manual?

    In this thread, we have one camp suggesting half or less of the suggested amount of A-S and another camp suggesting 1.25X. What's a body to do??

    Edit to add: it's Technics that says to adjust A-S to mimic tracking weight, not A-T. I see nothing in the A-T 540ML manual that talks about anything other than tracking weight range of 1.8g to 2.2g, just like the VM95ML.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2021
  8. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    That link is interesting but I think the OP goes wrong with comments about the string and weight.

    Typically, the hanger is adjusted such that when the stylus is in the lead-in groove, the string forms a right-angle to the arm. As the stylus travels across the album and approaches the spindle, the relationship of the string to the arm changes by about 10-15 degrees (depending on distance of hanger to arm), which reduces the force applied to the arm.

    There are some other nits but I'll not pick them today.
     
  9. Angry_Panda

    Angry_Panda Pipe as shown, slippers not pictured

    I have the ML/H (with the headshell included), and I don't see an anti-skate recommendation in the included manual, but I can't speak for the non-headshell version. My suggestion of 2.5 was based on observation, but clearly there's a pretty wide range of results folks are getting. At any rate, I doubt running yours at an AS of 2 is going to cause serious issues. (To be honest, mine tracks just fine anywhere I set it.)
     
    Rattlin' Bones and csgreene like this.
  10. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    The best thing to do, is to listen for mistracking distortion in either the left or right hand channels during highly modulated passages.

    Distortion in left channel, reduce A-S.

    Distortion in right channel, increase A-S.

    Distortion in both channels, perhaps increase VTF.

    I have a few albums that really push the envelope when it comes to tracking, so whenever I try a new cartridge or stylus I use those to test my setup.
     
    33na3rd and csgreene like this.
  11. geezin'

    geezin' Forum Resident

    Location:
    Keyser WV
    This is the information I used to set my A/S.



    part 2
     
    33na3rd likes this.
  12. csgreene

    csgreene Forum Resident

    Location:
    Idaho, USA
    Yeah, me too (I bought the headshell version). It's in the Technics manual, not AT's. I've been fooling around with VTF and AS quite a bit today on a variety of records and can't hear any differences with different settings. Right now, I'm at 1.8 for both and listening to Aja and it sounds glorious. This is the first edition of this album and it's been played possibly hundreds of times.
     
    Glmoneydawg and Angry_Panda like this.
  13. csgreene

    csgreene Forum Resident

    Location:
    Idaho, USA
    I do get how this is supposed to work but as I just posted to Angry_Panda, I haven't heard any differences after about the first hour with the 540. I am either immune to hearing distortion, my records are not challenging, or I'm just lucky. In any event, for now, I'm at 1.8/1.8 on the GR.
     
  14. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    This is from the AT catalog
    I just listened to Maiden Voyage at 1.5 AS (TF 2).
    It did sound better
    Yesterday same lp I did notice a bit of distortion in the inner grooves.


    [​IMG]
     
  15. csgreene

    csgreene Forum Resident

    Location:
    Idaho, USA
    What was it set to yesterday?
     
  16. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    Edit: was looking at the unmodulated curve lol

    This is from an AES paper
    Based on this the conical at 2 gm needs 0.20 to 0.40 gm of AS. So 0.3 looks like a good point.
    The AT manual says it should be less than the conical.
    1.5 on mine = 0.3
    I assume spherical = conical?
    Modulated groove



    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2021
  17. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    2.2
    I left it where I had it with the old cartridge
    TF was the same.
     
  18. quadjoe

    quadjoe Senior Member

    I have an AT750SH cartridge which has the Shibata stylus (hence the SH designation) and I have always kept my records clean (I've used a Shibata stylus or an ML since 1975.) Yes, Shibata and multi-radial styli can pick up more debris, so record cleaning becomes important. When I buy a new record, it always gets a cleaning on the RCM and then placed in a new inner sleeve. Old records might get two cleanings, and then a new inner sleeve (I prefer the Mobile Fidelity ones.) The new sleeves help reduce static, too. That said, once a record has been thorough cleaning, I usually don't wet clean it again unless, I've touched the playing surface. A pass with the Hunt carbon fiber brush before play does the trick. I rarely have any accumulation of dust on the stylus after playing two sides, but I do use the stylus brush between each record. I've always been this particular since the days of owning a BSR record-changer. (No I had no record cleaning machine in the 1960s, just record cleaning cloths, and a small camel-hair paintbrush for the stylus. It was the best I could do at 13!) A clean record will last you many decades.

    I should note that the Discwasher system as it was originally marketed was very good (1975?); the fluid left no residue on the records, and the brush was more than just a velour covering. However, once they switched from the D4 fluid to D4+, something changed and I noticed that it a) didn't work as well, and b)there seemed to be some residue left behind. I began a quest to find something better leading to the purchase of a RCM.

    Stylus shapes do make a difference in how clean you must keep your records, but it is worth it in improved tracking (given proper set-up, of course) and longer record life.
     
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  19. quadjoe

    quadjoe Senior Member

    I agree, completely. I love that it eliminates static so well, and I've discovered that a small amount on the pad is all it takes. I don't dry the fluid off the record with the supplied pad, but remove it with the RCM.
     
  20. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    Setting at 0.3, 75% of conical
    1.5 on mine
    Done

    [​IMG]
     
  21. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Yeah they got that wrong. Conical needs the least amount of A-S, elliptical more, line contact even more.
     
    VinylSoul likes this.
  22. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    AT say the ML needs less than conical.
    The AES papers are actual values.
    Conical/Elliptical need the same at 2 gm and modulated grove, ~0.4
     
  23. csgreene

    csgreene Forum Resident

    Location:
    Idaho, USA
    This is too far in the weeds for me. You're both contradicting each other. Meanwhile, I think I'll stick with the basic parameters Technics published in their manual. It's working correctly so far.
     
  24. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur Going with the flow...

    Location:
    PA
    The basic physics say it has less force than conical.

    That is why AT says AS is a bit lower.

    the ML area >> greater than conical
    But the same tracking force
    This results in less pressure (force/area)
    Means less heat, and last longer
    This all implies less force
    The AT manual does it for me, as does the post where the guy said 0.5 to 0.75 x 'normal'


    [​IMG]
     
  25. Phil Thien

    Phil Thien Forum Resident

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    That would be at the maximum modulation one is likely to encounter. At more typical modulations, the conical is contributing to lower (versus elliptical) skating forces.

    And I've already posted the section from the 12s manual, indicating the Shibata requires 1.2x the anti-skating of other shapes.

    Are you a member of the AES? Can you get this paper:

    [10] Pardee, “Determination of sliding friction between stylus and record groove”, Journal of the Audio Engineering Society 1981, p.890

    This is the paper that covers some measurements and says:

    The friction coefficient μ depends on record material, condition of the record (clean or dirty, groove damage, groove wear), amount of groove modulation, surface roughness, shape and condition (new, worn) of the playback diamond. Values were found to be between 0.22 and 0.64 for Shibata at 1.5 g tracking force [10].

    ...I think it could be helpful.
     

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