Author Topic: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link  (Read 7047 times)

eman

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #30 on: June 18, 2015, 08:25:03 AM »
Pat:

 I never meant to ruffle feathers. I stated my opinion. I have the right to be wrong. I did not mean to change anybody else's opinion or say they were/are wrong if they didn't feel as I do. There was a lot of vitriol  in some of those replies. Someone suggested if I want to hack up or similar the console to put in a different turntable I could. When I do put in a mag phono I always save the original if it is a nice console and it can be reversed if needed like on my MM I posted pics of. I still feel the same way it is the weakest link. My many years of electronics AND buying records as a record store used collection buyer will not allow me to sway from my position.

Someone suggested a CD player or Ipod for the best sound, A high end vinyl rig and an as new record beats any digital rig as I see it. I have a very expensive vacuum tube DAC and still prefer vinyl. Just not on a ceramic cart changer. Tonearms, patter weight and carts are not near as good on those. I have no problem with a well executed rim drive.

Just last night I transcribed 6 small records that came with my Telefunken Empress console. I did this because the guy I got it from did not know they were a family heirloom. They were recorded postwar at 78 and looked like a 45 but with the small hole like an LP or 78 in them. They were those records you could go into a store and record in a booth that were pressed in real time. I used my rim drive lab 80 Garrard to record them at 45 then used Audacity software to change it to 78 and clean up clicks and pops.

It turns out the family was a large auto dealer since the 30's in the DC area (Cherner Lincoln Mercury) and one of the records was the owner singing the company song/jingle. You never kn ow what you will find. I emailed the grandson who sold me the console the cleaned up digital files and will mail him back the records too for the family.

E
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Pat L

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #31 on: June 18, 2015, 09:00:37 AM »
I don't believe anyone should have been ruffled by what you posted. It's very obvious to me that you are well versed in these matters. You brought a different point of view than some others and that's something we should encourage. Thanks for brushing the vitriol off and participating. 😃😃😃

eman

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #32 on: June 18, 2015, 09:46:05 AM »
Pat:

  And thank you too! I've been around the block on these Internet forums so I was not bothered but I am always taken a back a bit when these "replies" are as strong as some where. It was nice of you to chime in on the thread as you did.

 

E
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624Magnificent

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #33 on: June 18, 2015, 10:31:04 AM »
Eman I wasn't offended by you post, all views are welcome. My initial impression of your post though, was that you might be a young person trying to provoke a reaction from a bunch of old farts. Emails and forum posts are notoriously easy to misread or mislead. My experience on this forum is that most of the members are polite and respectful, that's not always the case on other forums.
Tom

electra225

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #34 on: June 18, 2015, 12:17:13 PM »
I guess I missed the vitriol part.  I received no offense nor intended any.  What I saw was a member posting some hoity-toity ideas of how to hack up a tube console and got his head handed to him.  Two strong, opposing viewpoints fought to a draw.  Sounds like a good day all around, to me.  This is one way we learn.  One of the best friends I have in this hobby is one I have gone tooth and toenail with on occasion.  We find common ground and work together.  Best to you all.........
If it ain't broke, call me.  I can break it....

eman

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #35 on: June 18, 2015, 04:00:33 PM »
Eman I wasn't offended by you post, all views are welcome. My initial impression of your post though, was that you might be a young person trying to provoke a reaction from a bunch of old farts. Emails and forum posts are notoriously easy to misread or mislead. My experience on this forum is that most of the members are polite and respectful, that's not always the case on other forums.

I am an old fart, I love tubes, analog, old radios and I'm a ham. I love the Three Stooges too. I don't claim to know it all or anywhere near. The few consoles I've updates to a mag phono show me its a good upgrade even with a fairly cheap op amp based phono pre. I do realize being new puts me under a different level of scrutiny and I understand that. Thanks!

E
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eman

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #36 on: June 18, 2015, 04:08:03 PM »
I guess I missed the vitriol part.  I received no offense nor intended any.  What I saw was a member posting some hoity-toity ideas of how to hack up a tube console and got his head handed to him.  Two strong, opposing viewpoints fought to a draw.  Sounds like a good day all around, to me.  This is one way we learn.  One of the best friends I have in this hobby is one I have gone tooth and toenail with on occasion.  We find common ground and work together.  Best to you all.........

But as I posted my upgrades like on my MM can be undone and I save and restore the original changer should I or an eventual new owner want to have the original. On an early 60's Stereo Telefunken (not the one I posted pics of here) I took out the original and put a Garrard Lab 80 which is of the same period but much better. I did modify the sliding tray but could make a new wood tray if I had to. I was given a great Grundig solid oak many years ago (Stereo 390US console) where the original owner removed the Grundig and put in a Dual  that was nice too. Cheers!

E
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Phototone

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #37 on: November 06, 2016, 11:28:00 AM »
I feel I should comment, even though this is an old topic.  Mention is made of ceramic cartridge automatic turntables wearing records. A point that hasn't been made.  All the ceramic stereo cartridges made have conical stylus which present a larger area to the groove of a record than an elliptical or line-contact stylus, thus, for a given tracking pressure, they spread out the load over a slightly bigger groove area.  Therefore a 3-5 gram tracking force on a well lubricated free pivoting tonearm on a console won't really wear records.  I've got many records that I bought new back in the late 1950's, when the only thing I had to play them on was either a Silvertone delux portable stereo with changer, or a RCA stereo console, both with ceramic cartridges, and these records sound just fine today on my esoteric Thorens turntables with high-end cartridges.

HiFiFun

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #38 on: November 06, 2016, 08:06:11 PM »
Phototone,
I agree with you, also, about the ceramic cart stylus characteristics,
and the physics of mass spread over surface area.
 
One can consider that record player and cartridge/stylus
manufacturers and the RIAA all had to work somewhat in "concert" (my pun).

There was a need/desire for basic compatibility and improvement from 1948 onward
into the 1960's for consumer "high-fidelity" in their mass-marketed products.
Consider Columbia's 1953 concept of the "360 Sound" hi-fi in a hatbox,
to give quality recorded music reproduction for the "working family".

I continue to enjoy many mono LP's from the mid 1950's that sound great into their
sexagenarian age ! And, they sound BEST on vintage equipment that they were made
to be played on, in my opinion. All use ceramic carts, of course.
HFF

TC Chris

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #39 on: November 06, 2016, 09:45:03 PM »
I'm not taking sides here--this is a field that's tends to be like politics and religion.  My experience has been that generally, the most accurate reproduction is best in the long run.  But many of the old recordings weren't engineered with the utmost care, either in the studio or at the pressing plant.  They can actually sound better when the audio is colored by the equipment--perhaps by reduced HF response, or some elevated bass. 

There was an experiment that I read about once (wish I had kept the reference).  It was in the 1940s and it played music over a typical consumer-grade record player and then on high-fidelity equipment.  Most people preferred the limited-range consumer equipment.  I've always figured that it was because the sound on the limited range equipment was familiar--that's what records  are supposed to sound like.  And there were experiments in the acoustic era in which listeners couldn't tell whether they were hearing a live performance or the acoustic reproducer.  (AR recreated that experiment in the 1960s).  Now, we scratch our heads and wonder why they couldn't tell a difference.  The answer?  They just had no experience that would allow them to distinguish the two.

I'm guilty of enjoying not-quite-accurate sound, too.  I've got a bunch of console AM radios, a 1948 jukebox, and other fun stuff.  And yeah, sometimes I use the tone controls on modern equipment to improve things.  But the system that's playing right now in the living room, a blues show on FM radio, is closer to the original than it would be if I fired up the Provincial Serenade.  And the best LPs are higher fidelity than the best 78s; I'm not going to hazard an opinion on whether the best CDs are higher quality than the best LPs.... (My ears are too old to enter that dogfight).

Chris Campbell

Consoleman

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #40 on: November 07, 2016, 12:16:30 PM »
I think people way overstate the "damage" done to records by older equipment/ceramics/heavy tracking force. Real damage is done by worn or chipped styli. I have a small jazz LP collection that's reserved for my old changers and they get routine play with no ill effects. I think the stylus actually rides higher in the groove and doesn't even touch areas that a modern elliptical touches.

As for sound, I have a fairly high-end main system, but still get great enjoyment out of a 1950 suitcase player with Astatic ceramic cartridge. There is mid-range magic in there.
Mark

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #41 on: November 07, 2016, 10:33:25 PM »
Who would have imagined that in this day and age someone would be called an audiophool for not approving of ceramic cartridges in both the range of fidelity and record longevity. I guess people are also stupid for criticizing Crosley's modern offerings for using said tech huh?

Were Scott, Fisher, Ampex, and many others stupid or 'audiophools' for opting to GE VR variety cartridges in their mono based systems? Or did they simply understand the objective and absolute fact that magnetic cartridges are in every single way superior to ceramics in every category imaginable. We're not arguing MM vs MC here, where things get hazy.

Magnetics provide superior fidelity without obscene tracking force, as well as many of them provide stylus options that are far better for your records then anything else offered back then. They simply did not have technology to produce what they did later in the 70's, otherwise they absolutely would have used it. These are just facts here, no opinions to go off of. There's a very good reason that ceramics were totally abandoned in the world of mid-fi and up even in the 70's. If you legitimately can't hear the difference between a ceramic and MM cartridge I'd question any kind of judgment call you'd make on sound, under any circumstance. It's about as obvious as the difference between a magnepan setup and a Sound Design system.

Granted, I wouldn't replace the entire turntable if I retrofitted a modern MM cartridge, I'd just simply add more weight to the back of the tonearm and adjust accordingly until it's dialed in to specifications. However, saying that is 'hacking up' a console is just as stupid and idiotic as saying that you're hacking up an amplifier by replacing the inferior and garbage capacitors with modern equivalents or replacing the power or pre tubes with russian equivalents like Sovteks or Genalex. I'm not going to source modern wax capacitors and nobody will for very, very good reason. Let's get real here, actual, practical improvements to a console that degrade literally nothing about the 'originality' is not hacking it up, and arguing it is just results in pointless snarky infighting.

Improving upon a console's flaws to enhance the enjoyment of the unit should be welcomed, the fact people are willing to spend the time and $$$ into researching and problem solving issues certain units may have to me is excellent and shows how passionate some fellows are on here. It demonstrates people have a legitimate love for the hobby and only want to get the most out of it. What is wrong with that? Saying it's 'not original' isn't an argument, sorry.

And no, consoles are not cars.

End of rant.


westcoastjohn

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #42 on: November 08, 2016, 07:00:37 PM »
I respectfully suggest that if one installed a whole new tone arm on a vintage turntable, the original could be sealed in a vaccuum bag and put away for the future. Plus then that gentleman's LP's would last longer.  ;D

Skylabs

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #43 on: November 09, 2016, 08:53:49 PM »
The never ending gear/format debate!

I've heard $100,000 2 channel systems before. Did it sound $90,000 better than a $10,000 system to me? Nope.
Did it look $90,000 better than a $10,000 system? Don't care.

I've listened to two exact systems- one with the stock power cord and optical cable. One with $20,000 oxygen free blah blah blah cables.
Did one sound better? Nope.

Music is so perspective, there is NO better, or right/wrong or "period".

I like the "Blueberry Hill on 78 analogy". I wouldnt listen to half the music I do if I only had one system to listen to it on.

I still have an old Victrola that sounds like shit? No, it sounds like an old Victrola, and if I'm going to listen to the Carter family, I (personally) don't want to hear it on a $100,000 system- i'd rather hear it on what the engineers intended that music to be played on, because that's what they mixed/mastered it for.

The audio community needs to lighten up, quit trying to achieve audio perfection (boring), and for god's sake quit buying $20,000 power cables. We are worse than the art snobs.





TC Chris

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Re: The Ceramic Cartridge Changer-The Consoles Weakest Link
« Reply #44 on: November 09, 2016, 11:07:50 PM »
Don't worry, there's absolutely no possibility that this frugal character is going to buy a $20,000 power cable.   Even of the material had some theoretical advantage, it's negated by the miles of wiring between the generating plant and the wall plug and all the other noisy appliances plugged in along the way.  Besides, I've got boats, so I already have a way to waste money.

Chris Campbell