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Everything posted by Jagged24

  1. Ahem ..... not to mention that there is a queue should Jake eventually decide to sell!
  2. I sent a second PM last night in case you missed it.
  3. Jack, the XLR outputs are certainly a potential advantage, but you'd need to feed to a pre-amp or amp with volume control as the Whest unit doesn't have this capability. Regarding sound, there're several reviews on the net, which praise the outstanding tonal richness, fast dynamics and micro-detail this 'stage can achieve. I can verify these - in spades. My Zyx LOMC cart, in particular, is a fantastic match.
  4. Great phonostage in excellent nick - picked up this morning & it's already making fantastic music in my system. Indus is a genuine hifi-fan, and a thorough gent to deal with. Thanks!
  5. Jagged24

    Buying in Japan

    Sure. I was simply giving an example to illustrate a possible procedure for buying in Japan, and not suggesting which stylus the OP should purchase.
  6. Jagged24

    Buying in Japan

    Try Japanese price comparison websites - like kakaku.com or shopping.yahoo.co.jp - before you travel there (Google Chrome automatically provides a workable if not good English translation) to check what the going prices are, and which shops carry stock. Stockists can usually be found in big cities like Tokyo or Osaka; the listing or stockist website normally has the shop address. Lowest prices I found for the Jico SAS N97xE stylus are ~Y24500 for the sapphire cantilever version. If you're visiting Osaka, this is a store in the Nipponbashi area - https://joshinweb.jp/audio/5320/ - which often has low prices. Good luck.
  7. Stunning shots Ben & John! Also like the flamingos.
  8. My continuing "ode to Borage" (and thanks to those who liked my previous effort) Nikon D750 105mm f2.8 Micro 1/160@f3.8
  9. I've found a magnifying eyepiece to be a great aid for manual lenses, close-up photography, or other situations where precise focusing is vital. The Nikon (round) magnifying eyepiece DK-17M is fantastic for this, but doesn't fit the (square) eyepiece holders of prosumer bodies like the D750 or D7000 series. There are a number of bodges described on the web to fit the round eyepiece into the square holder but they are cumbersome. I have somewhat accidentally found a very simple way to fit the DK-17M (or any other round eyepiece like the DK-17 or DK-17A) onto my D750. It came about when I ordered a China-made copy of the Nikon DK-22 eyepiece off Ebay. The authentic Nikon DK-22 fits the square D750 holder, but does NOT fit the round DK-17M. However, I found to my surprise that the Chinese copy directly fits the DK-17M to my D750 body. Result - a one-step simple route to this very useful conversion! Needless to say, I quickly ordered a few more of the Chinese DK-22 copies (about £4 for 3 pieces), and have been able to fit the Nikon "pro" range of round eyepieces and rubber hoods to all my prosumer bodies. If anyone else is interested - the Ebay UK seller is "Poppins1910" and the shop is "MaryPoppins1910". But please do note that I can't guarantee that any DK-22 copy you buy will fit the DK-17M directly - I was certainly surprised when mine did! It may well have been a one-off.
  10. Never imagined that Borage, growing weed-like around my garden, could be quite so photogenic close-up! Nikon D750 105mm f2.8 Micro 1/250@f/11
  11. Terrific buzzard shot, Keith! Spotted owlets snapped a few days ago ..... totally unafraid, came out at dusk to screech at me! And another .....
  12. Prolonged travel has kept me away from the forum - now back & enjoying the British summer! Here's a snap from the garden. Hoverfly & poppy. Nikon D750 105mm f2.8 @ f11 1/250 ISO140
  13. I’m adding this update, again because there are so few reviews of Zyx cartridges posted elsewhere (and none that I have seen on this particular model). The Zyx Ultimate100H did not seem to require much “break-in”. As the suspension settled over the first 10-20 hours of use, tonal rendering became richer, and the separation of individual notes and sources noticeably widened. With these changes, I’m enjoying the cart even more (my Benz Glider SL, Zyx Airy and other carts have had barely a look-in since the Ultimate100 arrived). Impressions best summarized as follows: -Outstanding clarity, with rich but highly accurate - never overblown - tonal reproduction top to bottom. The sense of “separation” of individual instruments and players is quite striking, but the overall presentation is very cohesive and musical. -Excellent channel separation, wide soundstage, precise imaging -Lower groove noise than other carts I’ve used – noticeable with older, worn records - perhaps the carbon cantilever? Overall – splendid cart that IMHO sets a new standard at its price point, highly recommended.
  14. A picture showing the carbon fibre cantilever ..... looks to me like a rounded profile with a metallic 'cap' into which the stylus has been mounted.
  15. Thank you Spider. I got my first Zyx cart from another Wam member, and found the Zyx "house sound" very much to my liking ..... highly detailed, very fast, and tonally accurate from low to high notes. Well worth a try IMO.
  16. I usually use the Onzow Zerodust gel, and from time to time the Magic Eraser method. For the reasons others have given above, I'd be inclined to avoid wet cleaning unless specifically recommended by the cartridge manufacturer. See this for information on the Magic Eraser - easy and effective: http://www.high-endaudio.com/Magic.html
  17. Zyx released its new series of “Ultimate” moving coil cartridges in late 2016, including a range of models culminating in the Ultimate Dynamic. The Ultimate series features several changes, particularly a new “C-1000 Carbon Cantilever” engineered from composite carbon fibre, which carries a nude diamond micro-ridge stylus. Zyx cartridges appear to be very popular amongst audiophiles in Japan, with current waiting times of a month or more for the Ultimate series to be “made to order”. A few UK retailers (eg., Reference Fidelity Components, Analogue Seduction) stock the Zyx Ultimate range. There are very few reviews of Zyx cartridges to be found on the web, hence this brief note concerning my initial experience with the Zyx Ultimate 100H model (0.48mV output), in case this is of interest to Wammers. Overall, I’m very impressed with the Ultimate 100H right out of the box – it already sounds distinctly better in several respects than the Zyx Airy SB/X (with plenty of life left) that it replaced, on a Scheu Diamond turntable / 12” PU7 tonearm. The alignment was to Loefgren B using an arc protractor with null points bespoke to the arm. I set the VTF at 1.85 g, below the recommended 2g, and calibrated anti-skate using the HFN test record. The new cartridge has only played a few hours, so I am pretty sure further improvements are to come. I will update if there is any significant change. To me, the Zyx Ultimate 100H delivers incredible detail, with the speed, neutrality and tonal accuracy that I think of as the Zyx “house sound”. Bass goes as deep as my speakers / sub can handle, and is crisp & taut. Treble is sweet and extended. The mid-range is clear, fast and perhaps slightly warm, but not over-blown or lush. Channel separation and imaging are superb. Excellent for my usual listening (jazz, classical, vocals). Does the new carbon-fibre cantilever make any difference? Hard to say, but compared with the boron cantilevered Airy, there is markedly less surface noise, and less sibilance even with closely-miked vocals. The Ultimate 100H also seems just as fast, “punchy” and energetic as the Airy, so I didn’t detect any obvious dampening with the supposedly less resonant carbon-fibre cantilever. Negatives? Nothing serious (but then I’m already a fan of the Zyx “house sound”). The mounting grooves on the Ultimate 100H are unthreaded, and can be fiddly to align. Also, the cartridge is quite light so is easier to counter-weight if you add a mounting plate. Well worth considering IMO if you are after a fast, highly detailed, and tonally accurate MC cartridge. The new Zyx Ultimate 100H totally outperformed my Benz Glider SL – there was just no comparison – and was somewhat better than an older version of the Zyx Airy model that is further up the range. (Zyx claim that their micro-ridge stylus has a life of ~2000 hrs, which could be another advantage, although I do not own any Zyx carts that have come anywhere near that limit.)
  18. Your deck and arm are very good components, but because the set-up hasn’t been used for over 25 years, I’d advise you have it checked out by a local audio dealer or perhaps a helpful local Wammer. If you’re doing it yourself, I suggest these steps: First, make sure the cartridge won’t damage any precious records – it’s hard to tell without having it checked whether the stylus is still OK. John at Audio Origami http://www.audioorigami.co.uk used to offer a stylus check for a small fee if you mailed cartridges to him, but I don’t know if he still does. Otherwise, it may be simplest to change to an inexpensive new cartridge (eg., AT95E from Audio Technica for ~£25). Much better cartridges are available of course, and second-hand ones in good condition are sometimes advertised here. Second, check that the cartridge and arm are correctly set up. You can download an alignment protractor (with instructions) from https://www.vinylengine.com/cartridge-alignment-protractors.shtml Finally, the Technics 150 SL should be easy to set up – the manual can be downloaded from the link below. Obviously, you need to take the obvious safety precautions f with any old electrical device - if in doubt, don't plug it in. https://www.vinylengine.com/library/technics/sl-150.shtml You don’t say whether you already have a phono stage to connect your turntable to the amplifier – you’ll need one if you don’t.
  19. Late to this discussion but ...... I've enjoyed my Icon PS1.2 Sig for many years and rolled the valves several times. My top choice - a pair of matched Psvane 12AX7-T, with a Mullard 12AT7 (CV4024). Second choice - pair of matched JJ ECC83S gold pins (these came with the stage from Icon Audio), again with the Mullard. [Beware the confusing model numbers from Icon ....... mine is the two-box version of the PS1.2 with an outboard power supply; I believe the newer version may take 3x 12AX7s instead of the previous 2x 12AX7; 1x 12AT7 valve complement. Please check!]
  20. Nice to see the AP fan club on the Wam is growing! I've been an AP fan for many years for many years, first using the Tempo IIIi (same as in the images DavidKDavid has posted earlier in this thread) and since last year, a gorgeous pair of Avanti III's. YMMV but the main difference I found moving up the range was in the bass slam or heft (or what you will). My Tempo IIIi's went down pretty low, with clear taut low frequencies, but switching to the Avanti IIIs (much bigger, with side-firing woofers) increased the tonal richness and emphasis in the bass. Both speakers share the AP house sound - incredible tonal clarity and detail, holographic sound stage, a little fussy in placement. FWIW my advice would be to go for an s/h speaker - if you enjoy the house sound, then move up the range, with the expectation of a similar sound. For both the Tempo's and Avanti's, I found that a small investment in DSP to optimize the speaker - room interactions made a huge difference. (More than for other speakers I've had in the same room - perhaps owing to the detail and clarity of the APs?) Here's a link to another thread where I've shared my experience of DSP with the Avanti's, including the "before" and "after" curves.
  21. Not a great shot I'm afraid (taken through a window in a rush) but an unusal and beautiful visitor whose picture I wanted to share. I've seen buzzards many times in the UK but they are generally dark-brown birds with white segments on the belly. I've not seen one this pale before. Not sure if it's a juvenile (but again, most juvs I've seen before were also darker) or what my field guide says is the "pale variant (rare in the UK)".
  22. Several stunning photos so far! As I'm a Twitcher, Ben's kestrel and Keith's cormorant stood out.