|'); } // End -->|
The more I think about this, the more it sounds like a really good test. The AT at $279 vs. any over-$10,000 cartridge that someone would lend. I've had the AT in my home for two weeks (a broken-in one) and I generally like it. I've had a few quibbles, but basically, I feel that it's a damn good cartridge for $279. We need someone to lend John Elison their over-$10,000 cartridge to let him compare and record CDRs. And how about this, everyone who requests a CDR from John enclose $5.00 in an envelope. There's no reason for him to do this for nothing; we should cover his labor anyway. This would be a true test without the involvement of any audio magazines or reviewers - a test for the people, if you will. Think about it, John. I hate to ask this in a public forum, but maybe others would agree that this is a good idea. If you don't want to do it, maybe we could get someone else, like Sam Tellig, to do it. Hahaha - only joking to see if you were paying attention!
why would you not lone an OC-9 and an Alesis ML9600 to a guy with a 10K cartridge, I would assume that somebody at that level would a have a TT and preamp to support the cartridge. I would rather hear the OC9 recorded on an SM-30 a rockport or a walker. I am sure given simple instructions the owner of the cartridge could record the same passages well and return the gear to the original owners.
Well given the enthusiasm for the proposed experiment one can only assume that there is great confidence in the proposed technique. In fact my own questioning post seems to have engendered little concern with but a single responder informing that the technique is tried and true so don't worry about it.
Amazing! On a forum that regularily see expressions of the superiority of LP playback over digital and, let's be honest, outright digital bashing, there seems to be little concern over a proposal to send CDRS around to 'judge' the virtues of phono cartridges.
Is it simply the case that this thread is being conducted by digital friendly folk (and I can count myself as such), and being avoided by serious vinylophiles who perhaps consider the case to be absurd to the point of not warranting comment? So here's my challenge ... please explain the apparent contradiction of using one media (many would say 'inferior') to judge the virtues of another ('superior'?).
> > > please explain the apparent contradiction of using one media
> > > (many would say 'inferior') to judge the virtues of another ('superior'?).
The standards for comparing cartridges using digital copies is different than the standards vinyl enthusiasts employ to determine their listening preferences. Objectively and scientifically, digital is more accurate than vinyl or analog tape. In other words, digital produces much less distortion. What that means is that digital copies of vinyl sound like analog recordings rather than digital recordings because they accurately capture the analog qualities of vinyl.
That is a very superficial point of view. In fact it is very reminicent of the 'perfect sound' argument (actually a marketing campaign) that hearlded in the digital era. In the end it comes down to a number of technical specifications where digital is superior to analog, yet the entire history of hi-fi is resplendent with examples of superior technical meansurements not yielding benefits in sound (early 80's Japanese ultra-low distortion pre-amps to mention but one). Now, to ward of the flames, this is not to say that superior measurement are inconsistent with good sound ... not at all, only that measurements alone have proved to be incomplete guides to producing good sound.
As far as digital vs. analog goes there is a embarrasing richness of anecdotal evidence that the issue is much more complicated than just a raw numbers game. Not ony that, consider that when digital was first launched the technical specifications of the players were nearly as stellar as they are now, the vast majority of releases were AAD, and yet many found them virtually unlistenable.
Today digital has closed the gap considerable and some would say (me included) that in some categories digital playback performs better (to the ear), yet this advancement cannot be detected in advances in the superfical technical measurement.
It is really pointless to discuss something you have absolutely no experience with. You can argue out of ignorance to your hearts content, but until you let your own ears make up your mind, it is pointless to discuss the matter any further.
your own CDRs played back on your own system are 100% identical to the LP played by itself? Personally I'd doubt that, but supposing that it were true I'd suggest you start contacting audiophile labels since you may have discovered a cash cow. Think of it ... CDs that capture 100% of the essence of great analog playback, something to satisify even the most ardent digiphobe.
But wait, a little mind experiment just injected itself. What if we took a $50 DVD player, a good $2k CDP, and a 10k SOTA CDP, hookup all up in your system and play back that same CDR. Hmmmm ... what are the chances that they would all sound identical, each being that 100% faithfull analog experience. Perhaps it's time to start laying down the conditions and caveats. Then again you could just hold up your Crucifix again, but I have to tell you it generally takes a splash of holly water, or a crappy TT or CDP, to send me scurrying.
Yes, the the AT is a very good cart. And yes it represents a solid value. Unlike a lot of overpriced hype in audio or the high end. But, it isn't THE cart for EVERY system. In some, it won't shine. It isn't the best tonal match for some systems, and it is set-up finicky. The Denon in a suitable arm and system is also no fluke.
So some listeners want to spend more? Big deal I say. Let 'em. And some companies not only make more expensive carts, some people do buy them. Both their choices. This phonograph LP playing thing can often be more art than science. Why quibble about another artist using 'fancy' paint and brushes. It's all good.
Those of us lucky enough to have stumbled onto sytems that reproduce the emotion of music without having to sell an organ for transplant. Don't have to bash others for their expenditure. Some expensive carts can be good, they can even be excellent. I say live and let live.
....you make me laugh a lot...."Those of us lucky enough to have stumbled onto sytems that reproduce the emotion of music without having to sell an organ for transplant" ...Thanks
people can send me their $10,000 cartridges, and their cheap ones too, sure, and I'll come up with a CD that I will pass around to others on the board for their opinion.
Maybe I'll even give the cartridges back, after a while.
A $40 GE easily trounces the OC9 when mounted in a 16" Gray viscous damped tonearm mounted on a Garrard 401.
Strangely, the OC9 sounds much better when mounted in an SMEIV on 2 other turnatables.
Is it possible that some cartridges are particularly suited to some tonearms/turntables/ phono stages ?
The posts about the John Ellison CD are best summarized as:
One inmate's system, set-up and phono stage is (according to several people) subjectively a better match to one sample of one type of cartridge when compared to 2 other samples of 2 different cartridge types when recorded through a particular digital rig.
So here's my challenge:
Send me any cartridge over the value of 27 cents and I will mount it.
G'day Mr Dem,
I have an OC9 ML without a stylus as it fell off. I don't believe even with a stylus it was worth 27 cents so you can't have it.
I found the first challenge very interesting with the cartridges that were chosen. I believe that, even if the CD's don't sound just like the cartridges, they do convey enough information for a valid comparison. I thought the AT OC9 was better than the Shure, but I also thought that the dynavector was better than the AT OC9.
If John set up a paypal account, that would be an easy way to pay him.
Now we just need the bozo with the $10,000.00 cartridge.
I think that you ruined it for everyone. No self-respecting 10K cart owner would come forward now - people like that could not accept being called a "bozo".
That's the story of my life.
I'm so sorry. In my native tongue, "bozo" refers to a gentleman of intelligence, means, distinction, courtesy and generosity.
Any relation to the orange naped, greasepaint hound of hell is purely coincidental.
Maybe A. Salvatore will surrender a $10,000.00 jobber for the experiment from one of his absurdly well heeled audio aristocrat friends. Some of those Greek shipping magnates or Arabian princes must have them laying around the house in bushel baskets.
You donít need a bozo with a $10,000 cartridge. I havenít broken a cartridge since I was 23-years old and I wonít break any cartridge provided for this test. But, if I do, Iíll buy a new one.
Imagine a guy having to go from a 10,000 cart to something like AT-OC9 or Shure. That would be a real tragedy.
Can't comment on bozo status, but you might give mosin a try. I hear he has boxes and drawers full of cartridges.
..that other to another two, those two to another two each, and so on and so on..
I'm sorry, I didn't realize how many people weren't here for the first John Elison Challenge. He compared a top of the line Shure to the ATOC9. He mailed people CDs of the same music recorded with each cartridge. From what I read, I would be willing to say that the majority (nearly every post I read) favored the AT. There weren't 100 different opinions, as seems usual in these threads. I was in a thread yesterday, just foolin' around about HP of Absolute Sound and his bevy of over $10000 cartridges. As a joke, I said maybe we should compare the AT to one of these expensive cartridges to see if we had results like we did with the Shure vs. AT challenge. I kid around a lot, but IN ALL SERIOUSNESS, I trust John Elison more than someone with an 'agenda.' He seems to be a man of his word and honest, not to mention having a pretty good ear. Since he sent the CDs out for free this time, I thought that $5.00 each this time would be some small way of covering his effort. Once the initial CD was made, it's not labor intensive to make copies. So, to all you folks who are asking 'what would this prove?'- well, last time it proved by the preponderance of the evidence that the AT bested the Shure.
But, how many cartridges are there that cost more than $10,000? How about any cartridge over $5,000? That might be more reasonable.
am I that far out of touch? To me - even a $2,500 dollar cartridge is very expensive. Yeah, I know, if I every heard one in my system I'd probably be spoiled for life but - I can't help but think of carts as more or less of a "disposable" or, at the very least, temporary item.
I donít think any $2500 cartridge can come close to an AT-OC9ML/II, but if it can, you can test it. I donít want anything to do with a cartridge that retails for less than $5,000.
Any person out there who would like to lend you a cartridge could contact you by email. We'd be 'shaking the tree' (so to speak) to see what cartridges fall out. Then, it could be decided which ones to use and go from there. The cartridge-lender could remain anonymous to everyone except you.
That is a great idea. I would be willing to send John $5 to civer his labor even without getting the CDs. I just want to hear about the outcome.
Remember the tale of the mice who decided to tie a bell on the cat's tail? Who in his/her right mind is going to put up $10,000 for this stunt, even assuming the "results" would justify the proceedings? And even if you can obtain a $10K cartridge, and all parties do their parts as you project, what on Earth will this "prove"? Where are the controls? Doesn't it finally just get down to someone either does or does not "like" something, or someone does or does not see the "value" in something.
Good luck on this one! I can hardly wait for your conclusions!
Nobody is putting up any money. What is the big deal? Nothing is going to happen to the cartridge. Assuming that a catridge is good for 1000 hours, that would only be $10 per hour for a 10K cartridge.
Iíll donate my labor. Just cover my expenses (CD-R, postage, packaging) and Iíll be happy. Five dollars per CD should do that nicely.
That's very generous of you, John, and I was sort of kidding in my post about covering the cost of labor, though I did figure that the cost of materials and postage alone would approach the amount mentioned.
I think the toughest part would be getting someone to lend a cartridge in the 10-grand range!
Obviously, you are financially and emotionally invested. It is less clear what such an exercise would prove. If you've been wowing dealers with cartridge challenges, tell us more. I'll accept your testimonial in lieu of a $5.00 CDR sampling of a control situation that could be to the benefit of one over the other.
But this assumes that the CDRs would be adequate to judge the differences between the OC9 and the 10k-er, that nothing would be lost (or added) in translation. Even I don't believe that and I'd judge myself to be more 'digital friendly' than average for participants on this forum.
3 CD's where sent out
A Shure VX15MR
A Dynavector XV-1
All had the same Recordings, and done after carts brocken in for some time.
The CD's definatley proved you can tell the difference in sound in each cartridge well enough to make a a good decision in cartridge comparison.
The fact that a CD recording of two or more cartridges may be sufficient to detect a differences in sound is the point that is mute IMO. Specifically what I mean is that I doubt very much that such a recording is a complete and faithfull representation of the sound directly from the phono input to the speakers. Are such recording 'good enough' to declare one cartridge 'better' than another? Well I would say that they are likely sufficient to detect the main characteristics of a pickups' sound, eg. bold and dynamic vs. soft and delicate, that sort of thing, but a 100% perfect rendition of the pickups' capabilities and subtlities? - no likely.
In other words I would expect that the utility of such demonstrations would decrease proportionally as the overt 'signatures' of cartridges converged. Consequently let's suppose that someone offered up a 10k cartridge that superfically sounded a lot like a OC9. In such a case I would be very skeptical that CD recordings would be authorative when it came to detecting the subtle differences between the units, and I would expect that the recording would suggest that both are virtually identical.
I agree. He answered the telling a difference aspect, but unfortunetly thats confounded by the "and the 10k-er, that nothing would be lost (or added) in translation" part you mentioned, which obviously cant be addressed without a lot of effort (and even then I doubt it can be).
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