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On 09/05/2021 at 15:24, montesquieu said:

The MM stage in the Vida is much better than the MC one ... I always used the Vida with a good SUT (at various times, a Kondo AN-S6C, S&B TX103 or Hashimoto HM7) and it really was streets ahead of using the MC input, pretty much regardless of the output of the cartridge used. I demonstrated this to a few people and it was pretty clear. I would recommend anyone using a Vida to at least checkout using it with a top flight SUT or head amp. 

Quite likely SUT/MM stage combination could sound more pleasing as in general step up transformers suffer  from roll-off at low frequencies due to to core field capacity and at high frequencies due to shunt capacitance which might be more acceptable to the individual listener , also distortion produced has different nature to SS devices.
Harmonic distortion produced by a step-up transformer is highest at the lowest frequencies and drops as the frequency rises,  in most active step-up devices distortion increases as the frequency rises and we're quite sensitive to high frequency distortion. 
Main issue with SUt's is inevitable ringing which could be cured by added capacitance but most of the users don't have access to an oscilloscope and capacitance range has to be determined/tested individually , we talking tens to hundreds pF .
Definitely I would use a SUT when combined with very low cartridge output as above 70dB amplification SUT/MM combination has greater SNR advantage over common MC stage . 
I'm under no circumstances defending Vida stage as there are quite few better ones out there but in it's price range is quite good IMO . I am not massive fan of using inductors when unnecessary and I had my doubts about frequency response but when tested Vida's FR was flat as a pancake also THD and SNR were surprisingly low, I measured Paradise at the same time and THD and SNR were in a different league but my priority was a smaller size with a minimal drop of performance hence Vida sitting on my rack atm.
I see if I can source nice step up, it should be an interesting experiment/comparison but atm making another Paradise is a priority.

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Can anyone offer a technical explanation as to why the Paradise has such a limited depth presentation.

Before anyone says this is not so I had a Paradise stage and have heard this limitation before.

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5 minutes ago, Firebottle said:

Can anyone offer a technical explanation as to why the Paradise has such a limited depth presentation.

Before anyone says this is not so I had a Paradise stage and have heard this limitation before.

I have no idea Alan , I never experienced any limitations when it comes to depth of the soundstage when compared with other stages , maybe is the combination of cartridge/phonostage interaction . What cartridge have you used with Paradise ? Due to its native input impedance is best suited with low impedance carts , worked extremely well with Ortofon 4ohm but wasn’t that great with highish Benz

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18 minutes ago, Firebottle said:

Can anyone offer a technical explanation as to why the Paradise has such a limited depth presentation.

Before anyone says this is not so I had a Paradise stage and have heard this limitation before.

I would hazard a guess this is caused by phase incoherence at the top end.

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I have used a Lyra Clavis with the Paradise. 2 ohms internal impedance according to the info I can find.

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2 minutes ago, Blzebub said:

I would hazard a guess this is caused by phase incoherence at the top end.

Would you care to expand on this, as to possible cause?

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26 minutes ago, Firebottle said:

I have used a Lyra Clavis with the Paradise. 2 ohms internal impedance according to the info I can find.

When I have time I look that Lyra specs and do some sims in the Spice to see any irregularities, out of curiosity have you checked all supply rails and output with oscilloscope , something above 100MHz would done it as you’re looking for 70-80 MHz ?

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No I never checked the supply rails with a scope.

The unit was built by Simon C so was a high quality build.

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Simons units are of highest built standard , unfortunately I have no answer to your question but I’m building one again and could send for evaluation if same problem encountered when is ready . I am also intrigued by the previous comment about phase incoherence and gladly would learn bit more , I’m almost done with spice simulation as my old one couldn’t be recovered and I try to see if there is anything worrying , obviously I would thoroughly tests new unit if I find something I shall share my findings. 

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2 hours ago, Firebottle said:

Would you care to expand on this, as to possible cause?

It's just a guess based on the knowledge that imaging is dependent on phase coherence, so if the imaging isn't great (poor depth) then there's a problem with phase coherence. This is why Naim amps don't image very well, and it's a consequence of low (40kHz)bandwidth limitation, AIUI.

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7 hours ago, mac72 said:

Quite likely SUT/MM stage combination could sound more pleasing as in general step up transformers suffer  from roll-off at low frequencies due to to core field capacity and at high frequencies due to shunt capacitance which might be more acceptable to the individual listener , also distortion produced has different nature to SS devices.
Harmonic distortion produced by a step-up transformer is highest at the lowest frequencies and drops as the frequency rises,  in most active step-up devices distortion increases as the frequency rises and we're quite sensitive to high frequency distortion. 
Main issue with SUt's is inevitable ringing which could be cured by added capacitance but most of the users don't have access to an oscilloscope and capacitance range has to be determined/tested individually , we talking tens to hundreds pF .
Definitely I would use a SUT when combined with very low cartridge output as above 70dB amplification SUT/MM combination has greater SNR advantage over common MC stage . 
I'm under no circumstances defending Vida stage as there are quite few better ones out there but in it's price range is quite good IMO . I am not massive fan of using inductors when unnecessary and I had my doubts about frequency response but when tested Vida's FR was flat as a pancake also THD and SNR were surprisingly low, I measured Paradise at the same time and THD and SNR were in a different league but my priority was a smaller size with a minimal drop of performance hence Vida sitting on my rack atm.
I see if I can source nice step up, it should be an interesting experiment/comparison but atm making another Paradise is a priority.

I would generally agree, but there are some extremely high quality (at a cost) SUTs that if properly implemented suffer very few issues. The Hashimotos I use have pretty much a ruler flat response from below 20Hz to about 80kHz. Ringing can be an issue, but it isn't difficult to get right. Experience suggests that not correctly working out how to load a cartridge with an SUT is commonplace. Even when it is correct, there are some situations where loading on the primary vs the secondary can make an unexpected difference.

Actually, I suggest the main issue is that there are unfortunately an awfully large number of poor quality transformers on the market. This certainly isn't limited to step-ups, but any transformer in a low signal level application is critical, and I'm unpleasantly susprised at how poor some are. In particular, I can level this criticism at manufacturers of phono stages with built-in SUTs, where even some good manufacturers fit relatively poor units.

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On 09/05/2021 at 06:53, Non-Smoking Man said:

I bought one (orange).

Well it is the new black :D

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8 hours ago, mac72 said:

Quite likely SUT/MM stage combination could sound more pleasing as in general step up transformers suffer  from roll-off at low frequencies due to to core field capacity and at high frequencies due to shunt capacitance which might be more acceptable to the individual listener , also distortion produced has different nature to SS devices.
Harmonic distortion produced by a step-up transformer is highest at the lowest frequencies and drops as the frequency rises,  in most active step-up devices distortion increases as the frequency rises and we're quite sensitive to high frequency distortion. 
Main issue with SUt's is inevitable ringing which could be cured by added capacitance but most of the users don't have access to an oscilloscope and capacitance range has to be determined/tested individually , we talking tens to hundreds pF .
Definitely I would use a SUT when combined with very low cartridge output as above 70dB amplification SUT/MM combination has greater SNR advantage over common MC stage . 
I'm under no circumstances defending Vida stage as there are quite few better ones out there but in it's price range is quite good IMO . I am not massive fan of using inductors when unnecessary and I had my doubts about frequency response but when tested Vida's FR was flat as a pancake also THD and SNR were surprisingly low, I measured Paradise at the same time and THD and SNR were in a different league but my priority was a smaller size with a minimal drop of performance hence Vida sitting on my rack atm.
I see if I can source nice step up, it should be an interesting experiment/comparison but atm making another Paradise is a priority.

My old Miyajima ETR-Stereo SUT had the ability to add capacitance through a knob (quite a lot of it, as you say quite different to the amounts used for MM). This was useful for some cartridges. Something more SUTs could benefit from.

I've been a fan of SUTs for many years ('ringing' is something that's perhaps measurable but not necessarily audible in my experience, at least not directly). However I currently use an Allnic HA5000 head amp which is a nu-vistor tube design. Gain is fixed at 30db so it's not really suitable for very low output designs like AN Io2 or even the FR-7f I had (I sold both and their respective high-ratio SUTs) but it's really superb with cartridges over 0.25mV. My Allnic H7000V has quite reasonable built in SUTs but the performance with the matching head amp is considerably better. Two inputs, which is handy as I have a pair of tonearms in operation. Of course nearly any solid state head amp would measure better than tubes but it all depends what you are aiming at.

Tubed LCR phono stages I have heard have on the whole been more satisfying musically, but while the Vida has its limitations, for me it was a rare solid state phono stage that I could managed to live with for an extended period. Many high-end solid state phono stages I have tried have buckets of detail, but no soul.  The Vida is an exception. I still have a soft spot for it.

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The Vida uses Lundhal SUTs if I remember correctly. 

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3 minutes ago, Lurch said:

The Vida uses Lundhal SUTs if I remember correctly. 

Lundahl inductors not SUTs to be precise , its a LCR stage not MM stage with step up transformers 

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