Shure M97XE fault

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by rtrt, Nov 12, 2015.

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  1. rtrt

    rtrt Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    Hadn't used the turntable for a while, put a record on and was distracted by something elsewhere in house. Came back 10 mins later and could hear something not right. Listened properly and one of the channels was a bit quieter and had also lost much of the higher freq.

    Did a fair bit of diagnostics over the next day or 2 - swapping L&R phono leads into phono preamp, swapping phono preamp, swapping amp/speakers, disconnecting reconnecting cartidge tags, swapping cartridge tags round, removed and reseated stylus a few times. Not necessarily in that order of course!

    Anyway end result is that the problem is definitely with cartridge/stylus - its associated with the pins on the rhs as you look at the arm from the front - can't remember if thats the lh or rh channel as Ive swapped so much round!

    Cant swap the stylus as I only have the one.

    Only bought the cartridge in june/july so will likely return it, but wanted to see if anyone had any thoughts?

    I do have a multimeter so could measure if that would be useful?
     
  2. Deano6

    Deano6 Forum Resident

    Location:
    Plymouth, NC, USA
    When I bought my first M97xe, I had absolutely nothing in the right channel. Tried everything and got nothing. Had to return it directly to Shure who took forever to send me a new one. Couldn't wait so I bought another from KAB and it worked fine. Then the one Shure sent me arrived. Now I had two that worked very well. I checked the one I never use the other day, and wouldn't you know it. The right channel is gone on that one! I'll just stick to the one I got From KAB. Just wanted you to know you're not alone.
     
  3. ceedee

    ceedee Forum Resident

    Location:
    northern england
    these cart have a real quality control problem.
     
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  4. rtrt

    rtrt Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    Thanks for the feedback guys.
    Mine will be going back today - which puts the Jico stylus I was thinking about on hold for a while.
     
  5. bru87tr

    bru87tr Forum Resident

    Location:
    MA
    I have owned three of these with no issues.

    Only one of them I broke and my fault (brand new that day). They told me to send it to them and within a week had a new one back to me.
     
  6. The Pinhead

    The Pinhead SUDACA ROƑOSO

    Mexican made; all said.
     
  7. The FRiNgE

    The FRiNgE Forum Resident

    One thing to look for as a last resort, check the stylus for any gunk on it. Look very carefully, and magnification may be needed. Otherwise, just clean it good with isopropyl... don't worry about the epoxy as I have used isopropyl on Shure styli for over 30 years, including the M-97XE without any issue. (Ortofon is said to be sensitive to it) Some folks swear by the magic erasure, however I have been told by techs inspecting my styli for wear, back in the 80's when we still had stereo shops in this area..... that I had the cleanest styli they had ever seen. Trust the alcohol, it gets' em clean.

    Please get back to us, just wondering if that's it. :righton:
     
  8. MrRom92

    MrRom92 Forum Supermodel

    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    It's a shame that QC issues are apparently popping up because this really is a wonderful cart that I do recommend... If you get a good one I guess
     
  9. ceedee

    ceedee Forum Resident

    Location:
    northern england
    i wouldn't call it a wonderful cart. i'd say it's average at best and for the money there are better cartridges to be had.
     
  10. rtrt

    rtrt Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    Since I've not got around to removing it from the arm never mind returning it - i'll take a look. It'd be great it that was it - thanks for the suggestion.

    Ive cleaned my previous stylus with isopropyl alcohol and it worked well, so I've no problem doing the same with the shire.
     
    The FRiNgE likes this.
  11. Trashman

    Trashman Forum Resident

    Location:
    Wisconsin
    Please suggest some of those better cartridges.
     
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  12. ceedee

    ceedee Forum Resident

    Location:
    northern england
    nagaoka mp110, ortofon om10, ortofon 2m red, audio technica at120e, etc, etc. the shure is poorly made - often the cantilever is out of alignment or twisted. the have been known to drop apart too. and the sound is.....meh. i am listening to one right now. it doesn't track well for a shure either, not like a v15.
     
  13. feinstei9415

    feinstei9415 Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Bend, IN
    I found that Jico stylii are sometimes available domestically at a greatly lower cost on E-bay. I bought a Jico VN3G stylus from Jico for about $41.00 including shipping from Japan (excellent service BTW, I had it in 1.5 weeks). Then, I saw a VN3G stylus advertised as "Made In Japan" on E-Bay for $17.00 shipped. To take a chance, I ordered one. I looked at both of them under a 3D microscope and they appeared identical and both sounded identical.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/EVG-PM3145D...345193?hash=item3393b37aa9:g:kgcAAOSwFTRTpxId
     
  14. OcdMan

    OcdMan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    The M97xE tracks very well...when you get a good one. That's the tough part. It's so hit and miss, it's crazy. Treble response can be dull unless it's loaded up around 60k Ohms and with the right amount of capacitance. Also, the soundstage quality and width increases greatly when you adjust the azimuth for optimum and even crosstalk. It's a meticulous process and you have to have the right test records. Okay, with all that being said, most people spending $70 on a cartridge aren't going to go through all of that to get the most out of it or even have the equipment to do so. So, for me, I'd take a "good" and "optimized" M97xE over an Ortofon OM-10 or 2M Red. Can't comment on the Nagaoka MP-110 but the AT120E is really good. But if someone can push their budget to $170 or so, they can get a Denon DL-110 instead.
     
    The FRiNgE likes this.
  15. MrRom92

    MrRom92 Forum Supermodel

    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    But what are your opinions on the cartridge itself? These are all shortcomings of the stylus, which I was not referring to. I agree that if used "as-is", it is just another cart comparable to many others in its price range. I typically recommend using it with the JICO SAS stylus.
     
  16. ceedee

    ceedee Forum Resident

    Location:
    northern england
    bland sounding. slow response and lack of detail - and the crosstalk levels are a joke. i know a lot of people own this cart and try to talk it up but it really isn't very good. for a $100 cart i don't want to be missing with capacitance and resistance. it isn't good enough to justify that input, and at the same time it isn't a $30 at95 and should be better made and with more attention to how it sounds. if they did away with the expensive packaging and instead hired some workers who actually took pride in their job it would be a different story. speaking of the ortofons - i have a cheap om5e which puts the shure to shame. i have also used an om30 which really is in a different league (but pricewise also). the best balanced cart at that price i think is the nagaoka mp110 - but if you want a really really good really really cheap cart get a om5e.
     
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  17. OcdMan

    OcdMan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Totally agree that Shure should step up the attention to detail even beyond the QC issues. Maybe put an actual nude, true elliptical on there while they're at it.
     
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  18. MrRom92

    MrRom92 Forum Supermodel

    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    I think reintroducing a hyperelliptical option would be a good next step but I wouldn't mind seeing them introduce an entirely new cartridge at a higher price point. Better QC, ultra high compliance boron cantilever, nude mount HE/shibata type stylus, better quality internals that lead to a fuller more natural sound yet still neutral sound, etc. there's definitely room for improvement here. If JICO can do it why can't they.
     
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  19. OcdMan

    OcdMan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    I agree. Maybe a different body type that's more rigid and less resonant, which I think is a problem with the M97xE style of body. They could be reintroduce beryllium cantilevers if they could absorb the cost. It's really a money issue.
     
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  20. The FRiNgE

    The FRiNgE Forum Resident

    Beryllium is not readily available, I have read. However that shouldn't stop Shure from developing a thin wall tapered aluminum cantilever with a hyper-elliptical nude stylus, and Shibata at a higher price point. I have found the OEM hyper-elliptical V-15HE tracks the most demanding passages flawlessly.
     
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  21. OcdMan

    OcdMan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Maryland
    Stanton achieved with an aluminum alloy nearly the same results as Shure did with beryllium. Denon had hollow tapered boron cantilevers that were extremely low mass. Shure could probably take one of those concepts and push it even further.
     
    MrRom92 likes this.
  22. jjjos

    jjjos Forum Resident

    Location:
    Virginia
    I had the M97xe and had issues with IGD -- I dumped it for the AT120E and was much happier, just a better performing cart for $20 more.
     
  23. rtrt

    rtrt Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    UK
    Ok I had a look again this evening. In short cleaning hasn't helped.

    I removed it and had a look first, it looked clean and in good shape tbh, but I went ahead with the brush and Isopropyl fluid and then replaced the stylus. Found there was now a problem with both channels!

    Then removed / replaced again and back to same single channel problem - that was enough for me.

    I started to reinstall my old cartridge, but ran out of time so will do that sometime in next few days.

    M97 will be returned to the dealer where I bought it. Suspect they might take some time to sort it all out, as they talked about sending it to Shure. I'm expecting it to be several weeks unfortunately - hence putting the old one back on.

    If the old one is in too bad a shape, I might look at one of the cartridges mentioned above and use the M97 as a backup.

    So a quick question - if a cartridge is riding low due to old/collapsing suspension, it was suggested on another forum that this can affect low frequency performance. Anyone able to provide some more info - for example what would the problem sound like?
     
    The FRiNgE likes this.
  24. I swapped stylus on my M97xe for a Vivid stylus. Much happier using this
     
  25. jjjos

    jjjos Forum Resident

    Location:
    Virginia
    I probably could have done that, I didn't think of it at the time.
     
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