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Cartridge Alignment to Protractor Extremes

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by avanti1960, Apr 3, 2021.

  1. Sterling1

    Sterling1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    The last 5 stylus assemblies I purchased have had cantilevers square to cart. I also received a warranty replacement Shure which had a bent cantilever so I sent it back to Shure for another cart.
     
    JackG likes this.
  2. Ingenieur

    Ingenieur I love to travel, but I hate to arrive.

    Location:
    PA
    I compared the tonearm specs
    Ortofon.vs Technics
    Effective Length 231 vs 230 mm
    Overhang 18 vs 15 mm
    Offset 23.9 vs 22 degrees
    Mounting distance 213 vs 215 mm

    I have 0 idea what this means, lol, but looks close, but after reading this thread, close enough?:biglaugh:

    Edit: looking at the geometry should just shift null points a bit vs Ortofon arm

    It will sound great
    not to mention, that 2M Black on a black SL1500C would look gooood ;)
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2021
    Sterling1 likes this.
  3. StratDoc

    StratDoc Active Member

    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN
    Using the printed version Lofgren B from Conrad Hoffman, I realigned my cartridge yesterday. Do you measure from outside to inside on the arc, or from inside to the perimeter? I might be doing something wrong since it makes a difference which way I trace the arc. I have it currently aligned where outside to inside fits perfectly along the arc and null points. If I start at the inside and trace to the outside it falls inside the arc as it moves to the perimeter.
     
  4. Davey

    Davey very clever with maracas

    Location:
    SF Bay Area, USA
    It can't be any different in each direction, it's the same arc, when the overhang is set correctly the stylus will trace the arc while protractor and platter are stationary, in to out or out to in, either way. You will have to move the protractor while adjusting the overhang, but the final check is with it stationary. Don't worry about the null points until the stylus is following the arc, that's the first adjustment. You will want to double check it after setting the offset at one of the null points, and maybe slightly tweak it again if it has changed. You can verify the protractor is correctly made for the table and arm mounting distance by checking both null points, if you have the overhang set so the stylus follows the arc and have offset set so you align with one of the null point grids, but not the other, then the protractor is wrong.

    Maybe take some pictures to show us how you have it setup, and the parameters you used to generate the protractor. Could be something is not right.
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2021
    Electric Warrior likes this.
  5. jupiterboy

    jupiterboy Forum Residue

    Location:
    Buffalo, NY
    Start on the inside—close to the spindle.

    Think of it like this. You can set the cartridge about anywhere in the headshell and line it up at one point. When you get it right, it will align on all points.

    When you start on the inside you are setting a control so that you can then check the outside and this is where you see how far off you are.

    If the cartridge is past the proper overhang, then when you move to the outside it will sit not on the line but closer to the pivot. If it sits beyond the line on the outside, then the cartridge is sitting too close to the pivot or back of the tonearm.

    If you go from inside to outside randomly you'll never get there. The inside is the control and the outside tells you if you need to nudge it forward, backward or leave it alone.
     
  6. psulioninks

    psulioninks Forum Resident

    Location:
    Midwest USA
    What version of their tonearm do you have? I have a Super Prime Scout, and I am thinking about getting one of the Mint Protractors, but I want to make sure I am getting the right one for my tonearm.
     
  7. Cliff

    Cliff Magic Carpet Man

    Location:
    Northern CA
    Heya. Just give Yip your P2S and effective length and he'll print exactly what you need. I had mine made for a metal 10.5i but then upgraded to a 10" 3D arm a year or so after.
    My 3D's P2S is 258mm and effective lenth is 273.4mm.
     
  8. Cliff

    Cliff Magic Carpet Man

    Location:
    Northern CA
  9. blakep

    blakep Forum Resident


    The best arc protractor instructions-see link below:

    Yes, the instructions are quite clear and straight forward... - John Elison - Vinyl Asylum
     
    clercqie likes this.
  10. StratDoc

    StratDoc Active Member

    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN
    Okay, great information here!

    The total tonearm length for the pro-ject x1 is 218.5 It lists the overhand at 218. So on the Conrad Hoffman protractor I input 218 for the pivot to spindle distance, correct?

    From Pro-Ject X1 specs
    Effective arm length 218,5 mm
    Overhang 18 mm
     
  11. doctor fuse

    doctor fuse Forum Resident

    Interesting that Pramanik says "A better solution is to place the reso-nant frequency of the tonearm and cartridge at a point wherewarp frequencies are seldom small; that is, as close as possi-ble to 15 Hz and certainly above 10 Hz." Much different than the 8-12Hz recommended today. Unless I am misinterpreting his remark?
     
    Sterling1 and Brucedgoose like this.
  12. Davey

    Davey very clever with maracas

    Location:
    SF Bay Area, USA
    Pivot to spindle should be 200.5 mm (effective length minus overhang).
     
  13. Brucedgoose

    Brucedgoose Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hawaii
    I haven’t read those articles in years, but based on what you say, as well as the additional source I will cite below, I would just shoot for 10Hz or slightly above and not sweat it too much.
    The additional good source to know about is this short article and chart from an old High Fidelity Magazine (they like 8-12 Hz).
    https://worldradiohistory.com/Archive-All-Audio/Archive-High-Fidelity/80s/High-Fidelity-1983-01.pdf
    Generally speaking, though, I would tend to accept Pramanik’s figures over High Fidelity.
     
  14. StratDoc

    StratDoc Active Member

    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN
    So when I input 200.5 for pivot to spindle, the Conrad Hoffman protractor calculates the effective length is 218.960 not 218.5. If I enter 200 pivot to spindle, it correctly calculates the arm length at 218.5 Pivot to spindle distance is not the same as total arm length?

    It is also interesting the the Conrad Hoffman template provides overhang calculations that don't match spec. 200.5 for pivot to spindle the calculated overhang is 18.46. With 200 pivot to spindle the overhang calculates at 18.5 Neither align with the pro-jet specs of 18 mm overhang.


    Which number should I use?
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2021
  15. Davey

    Davey very clever with maracas

    Location:
    SF Bay Area, USA
    You can pick whichever alignment you want to use. Plugging in the numbers, it looks like Pro-Ject may be using Lofgren A/DIN (Baerwald), I may have steered you wrong in a previous post, looks like I was using 200 mm for pivot to spindle, guess I misread the specs ... Cartridge Alignment to Protractor Extremes ... you can always measure it to be sure ...

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2021
  16. StratDoc

    StratDoc Active Member

    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN
    I note where I can adjust inter groove radius and get darn close to spec for Lofgren B with 200.5 plugged in. Am I better off using Lofgren A with specs of 200.5 DIN?

    Can you say "Yes, I am anal retentive"?

    Thanks
     
    Brucedgoose likes this.
  17. Brucedgoose

    Brucedgoose Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hawaii
    There does seem to be something about audio, analog in particular, that brings this out in people (myself included)!
     
  18. Sterling1

    Sterling1 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Louisville, KY
    Just a sidebar: When I first aligned my A-T VM540ML using the A-T Headshell on my Technics SL-1210 the cart was tail high at Zero VTA setting. I nevertheless ran it tail high and got a bold sound, some surface noise, and a resonance peaking between 8 and 10 Hz. A week later I aligned the cart to a Technics Headshell to get a level cart at Zero VTA setting. The sound was less forward, no surface noise, that's to say black as coal backgrounds, and resonance peaking between 7 and 9 Hz. I am very pleased with the alignment now, the sound is distortion free and overall the tone is pretty much indistinguishable from CD's and almost on par to SACDs of same production; however, the resonance divergence from cart leveling was not expected.
     
    doctor fuse likes this.
  19. StratDoc

    StratDoc Active Member

    Location:
    Chattanooga, TN
    So, I am really getting confused. You have fixed points as spec'd by manufactuers- spindle to pivot, overhang, etc. Yet these points depend on the alignment method used? Why don't the mfgs state the method used?
     
    Brucedgoose likes this.
  20. Brucedgoose

    Brucedgoose Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hawaii
    ‘Cause 99% of their customers don’t give a sh**! Only a few crazies like us even know what this stuff is all about!
    When you buy a separate tonearm, they give you the necessary information because they know that by the time you’re buying a separate tonearm you gotta be pretty OCD to begin with, but others aren’t so obviously afflicted!
     
  21. Brucedgoose

    Brucedgoose Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hawaii
    OK, more seriously, I think the manufacturers are trying to make it reasonably simple, whereas hardcore audiophiles aren’t necessarily looking for simplicity (at least the ones participating in this thread!).
     
  22. avanti1960

    avanti1960 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    Chicago metro, USA
    sir the use of the Mint protractor is absolte simplicity. a little taxing on the eyes and task lighting but other than that a piece of cake...
     
    Brucedgoose likes this.
  23. Brucedgoose

    Brucedgoose Forum Resident

    Location:
    Hawaii
    Well, I did use a Mint protractor and have changed tonearms several times, but I think the average person would find all this to be a total pain-in-the butt. In fact, this kind of thing is what caused analog’s premature death back in the day!
     
  24. csgreene

    csgreene Forum Resident

    Location:
    Idaho, USA
    I don't think I'd enjoy LPs at all if I had to go thorough what some of you guys go through. I used the Technics device for my 1210GR and VM95ML. About 15 minutes total to install and align the cartridge and it has sounded blissfully good for the past year and a half. Now, let's get back to the OCD stuff... ;)
     
    Sterling1 likes this.
  25. AKA-Chuck G

    AKA-Chuck G Forum Resident

    Location:
    Washington NC
    I like the tracking wizard made specifically for your arm. I've tried others but these are the easiest to use.
     

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