Surface Noise and Styli

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lukpac
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Surface Noise and Styli

Postby lukpac » Tue Jul 15, 2003 10:57 am

While working on a piece of vinyl today, I noticed some nasty surface noise in places. Not clicks and pops, but a constant background noise. I was about to give up hope of getting a good transfer, but then I thought of something.

My cartridge is an Audio Technica Studio Reference 8008 (the AT331LP is the current name, I believe). It's got a linear contact stylus. I also have an older AT sitting around, with an unknown stylus. Could be conical, could be elliptical, I don't know. Whatever the case, it fits on the cartridge the same way my linear contact one does.

Back to the story, I think "why not try out that other stylus?" Amazingly all that nasty noise vanished.

Linear contact stylus
Elliptical (?) stylus

I think for the most part the linear contact stylus is still going to be the best bet, but it's nice to know I have something to fall back on in situations like this.

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Postby Ron » Tue Jul 15, 2003 6:25 pm

Cool story. Using a different stylus, one that obviously seats differently in the record grooves, seems to have done the trick. Maybe try it out on other distressed vinyl to see if clicks caused from scratches are minimized, etc. Or better yet, bring the friggin' thing over to my place and we'll listen to a few records, down a few brews and head on out to a Swallows home game. Ummm. Ballpark sushi!
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Postby lukpac » Tue Jul 15, 2003 8:17 pm

Maybe you could get them to bring one of those laser turntables to your house since you're in Japan.

Anybody have $10k they want to give me?

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Postby Ron » Tue Jul 15, 2003 9:16 pm

It's funny. I just talked to a guy about that laser turntable over the weekend. The inventor/maker does encourage people to drop by his place for a demonstration. Won't play clear or colored vinyl, but it doesn't read lateral scratches so it's supposed to be real quiet.
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Postby lukpac » Tue Jul 15, 2003 9:30 pm

Somebody mentioned that they either had one or sent away an LP to be recorded on it. I guess the inner grooves were basically trash, but it was able to focus on a part of the groove wall that was still fine and the LP sounded like new.

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Postby Ron » Wed Jul 16, 2003 12:43 am

I've never checked myself, but the guy [supposedly] has a web site. Don't know any details, but were he able to tie-up with a major manufacturer like, say, Pioneer [and the price were to drop *significantly*], the thing could conceivably take off--at least in the audiophile community.
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Postby lukpac » Wed Jul 16, 2003 8:18 am


Ron
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Postby Ron » Thu Jul 17, 2003 1:19 am

Great! Handsome little devil, isn't it?
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Grant
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Postby Grant » Wed Jul 23, 2003 3:31 pm

I never tried using a conical stylus, although I do use three different carts to get different sound signatures.

Tracking heavier than the recommended weight can help cut through some noise.

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Postby britre » Wed Jul 23, 2003 5:27 pm

Grant wrote:I never tried using a conical stylus, although I do use three different carts to get different sound signatures.

Tracking heavier than the recommended weight can help cut through some noise.


Same here except I have four different for whay I am doing, Stanton 981Z is my favorite, followed by the Shure V-15 type III, Empire D3000/4 for Quad work, Audio Technica 500D (this cart was discontinued for some reason, but is a very warm sounding cart.), This is my collection of some of the better Cartridges I have had. Many more have come and gone over the years, but these will most likely stay with me till I die.

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Postby feinstei » Fri Dec 12, 2003 2:23 am

I actually own an ELP Laser Turntable. I really enjoy it. The great thing about it is that you can take a record with tremendous inner groove damage (I have a British copy of "Ogden's Nut Gone Flake" as an example) and set the laser angles so that they read only the undamaged part of the groove.

On my Linn-Sondek with the Shure V15, the Ogden's Lp is unplayable. On the Laser Turntable, it sounds like a mint LP. It also is really fabulous for playing off-speed 78 RPM records since the speed is adjustable from 16 RPM all the way up to 85 RPM.

The downside of this machine is that it is ONLY serviced in Japan (even though they have a sales agent in the U.S). Therefore, whenever it needs adjustment (supposedly every 5 years or so -- I've had mine for 2 years), you have to pay several hundred dollars to ship it back to Japan. I keep nagging Mr. Chiba to setup a repair facility in the U.S., but he insists that the work can only be done under his personal supervision in Japan.

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Postby Grant » Sun Jan 25, 2004 9:16 pm

Well, i've been happy as a clam since i've upgraded to a Shure M97xE with the elliptical stylus. My LPs now sound "correct". The surface noise is reduced with all the vinyl i've played so far, and the detail is great. No midrange bloat, no bass bumps, no zippiness in the highs...no coloration to speak of! I love it! My CD-Rs are sounding better too, especially since i've begun recording at 88.2, 96, and 192KHz sampling rates with 32-bit float.

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Postby Ron » Wed Feb 04, 2004 7:00 pm

feinstei wrote:The downside of this machine is that it is ONLY serviced in Japan (even though they have a sales agent in the U.S). Therefore, whenever it needs adjustment (supposedly every 5 years or so -- I've had mine for 2 years), you have to pay several hundred dollars to ship it back to Japan. I keep nagging Mr. Chiba to setup a repair facility in the U.S., but he insists that the work can only be done under his personal supervision in Japan.


The work can only be done "under his personal supervision"--typical Japanese behavior. Apprentices must many times spend years training from the master, even for the most mundane procedures. But as regards bringing the player in for servicing, if ever you have a reason to be in Los Angeles, bring it with you as in the off season round-trip flights to Japan can be had for $350-400. All to say, for the same money you'd spend in shipping you could enjoy a brief vacation in Japan. Lodging, of course, is extra. But maybe Mr. Chiba could put you up for a few days.
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Re: Surface Noise and Styli

Postby lukpac » Sun Aug 27, 2006 10:48 pm

lukpac wrote:While working on a piece of vinyl today, I noticed some nasty surface noise in places. Not clicks and pops, but a constant background noise. I was about to give up hope of getting a good transfer, but then I thought of something.

My cartridge is an Audio Technica Studio Reference 8008 (the AT331LP is the current name, I believe). It's got a linear contact stylus. I also have an older AT sitting around, with an unknown stylus. Could be conical, could be elliptical, I don't know. Whatever the case, it fits on the cartridge the same way my linear contact one does.

Back to the story, I think "why not try out that other stylus?" Amazingly all that nasty noise vanished.


FUCK.

Mr. Hunte sent me his 8008, which he wasn't really using. All the aforementioned noise is gone with this one, plus there's less distortion. Either mine was damaged when I got it, or things vary with manufacturing.

I'm happy this one is better, but I wish I would have found this out 3 years ago.
"I know because it is impossible for a tape to hold the compression levels of these treble boosted MFSL's like Something/Anything. The metal particulate on the tape would shatter and all you'd hear is distortion if even that." - VD