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REVIEW: DYNAVECTOR 17D3 Phono Cartridge

Model: 17D3
Category: Phono Cartridge
Suggested Retail Price: $795
Description: LO MC
Manufacturer URL: DYNAVECTOR
Model Picture: View

Review by SirAnthony (A) on November 01, 2006 at 02:43:34
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for the 17D3

I just went crazy last month and spent alot of money on a new rig. I got the Origin Live Aurora with Encounter tone arm and a Dynavector 17D3 cartridge. I have to say everything has exceeded my expaectations.

In this review I will focuss on the 17D3. This cart has been around for some time. It is a LO MC with a diamond cantilever. The cantilever is very short compared to other carts. The stylus is a micro ridge type. It puts out 3.0 MV. There has been an improvement in the design of the yoke of the 17d. This improvement was enough to call it the 17D3.

Set up of this cart was difficult to some extent because of the tiny and clear cantilever. It is a little difficult to see and line up. But Not as hard a I heard it would be. I think I got lucky and got it pretty close the first try. If it isn't aligned properly I don't see how I could get it any closer.

The other tricky part is the VTF. I had it set to about 1.9 to 1.95g and let it break in. After about 25 hours the cart started to sound extremly detailed. I mean detailed to the point of harrasment of my senses. At first I thought that was just the way the cart sounded. I thought I might have to change some tubes to warm up the sound. I made a CDR for some friends and I was listening to it in the car. I could hear the cart letting go under heavy bass. So I realized more VTF was needed. I upped the VTF to 2.15g and the cart changed alot. It settled down and started to sound really good.

I tried experimenting with 60 to 75 ohms load. Then 100 ohms but came back to about 140 ohm load I had before. I fine tuned the load. I'm not exactly sure what the load is but it's 140 give or take a couple of ohms. I think it's about as perfect as it gets.

This cart is not warm. It is nuetral in a really good way.

I can say without any reservation that this is the best cartridge I have ever heard. Nothing I have heard even comes close! It's extremly detailed with an ultra black background. It is very dynamic but it is also as smooth as silk. I remember people saying this cart is quit a good rocker. Well no offence to rock but that is selling this cart well short. It sounds great with everything. Yes rock sounds great. I really dig Robin Trower on the 17D3. But country sounds great too! Slide guitar really is majical on the 17D3. Randy Travis Storms of Life sounds like the master tape to me. Then again Jazz sounds great too. I just listened to Ellington Jazz Party. I could hear every little texture of every note with the drums almost scareing me when they thumped. Like I said this cart is nuetral in a really good way. It sounds fantastic from top to bottom. Nothing stands out over anything else. Everything sounds great. This cart is not cheap. But there are alot of carts that cost alot more. I really don't see how any of them could be much better. Really you would have to split hairs to get any better. It is a really good match with the Aurora.

To all you 103 users. The 103 is a mid fi cart!

Product Weakness: It may not be warm and Koetsu enough for some
Product Strengths: See above

Associated Equipment for this Review:
Amplifier: Modified ARC D76A
Preamplifier (or None if Integrated): Modified AI Modulus 2D
Sources (CDP/Turntable): Origin Live Aurora + Encounter TA
Speakers: Axiom M80's
Cables/Interconnects: DIY
Music Used (Genre/Selections): Rock, Country, Jazz
Type of Audition/Review: Product Owner

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Topic - REVIEW: DYNAVECTOR 17D3 Phono Cartridge - SirAnthony 02:43:34 11/01/06 (35)

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