Well, until today I lived without transformer, using MC input of Gold Note pre. Painfully waiting for cartridge to break-in. However it became clear that something is not right, and midrange is lost, cartridge sounded a little harsh and almost "artificial". Now, it "competes" with Grado Statements, cartridge more expensive and just as musical as accurate, but still. So I decided to go transformer route, because what everyone and there ant recommend for SPU. And got myself Phasemation T-300. Now here are specs (relevant) - Ortofon Output voltage at 1000 Hz, 5cm/sec. 0.2 mV Internal impedance, DC resistance - 7 ohm Recommended load impedance > 100 ohm T-300 Applicable Cartridge's Output Impedance 1.5 to 40 ohm Secondary Impedance Loading 47 k-ohm Step-up Ratio ( voltage gain ) 26dB Sound definitely became more "euphonic", much softer, with way more liquid midrange. With a little slower transients and less punchy lower bass. Is this so called "famous SPU sound"? But is there a better much or this one good? (I probably should ask BEFORE I got T-300, but you know )) ). I honestly do not know. Are there any calculations to compute proper transformer values? Phono pre gain can be varied from 42 to 51 db (it is 42 now). Before it was MC with +68 gain (220 Ohm load) My ears are happy though..