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Best <€1000 MM cartridge for vinyl recordings with Rega RP8 & Graham Slee Accession Dual-Channel Preamps
Old 30th October 2018
Here for the gear

Best <€1000 MM cartridge for vinyl recordings with Rega RP8 & Graham Slee Accession


This is the current setup for recording my vinyl records:
Ortofon 2M Blue
Rega RP8 with RB808 & TT-PSU power supply
Graham Slee Accession

I mostly record 70's & 80's funk/disco and african music.
The issue I currently have with my Ortofon 2M Blue is that the recording are generally clear and detailed in the higher frequencies but when it gets too busy and complex, it sometimes skips more to sounding aggressive and harsh and just too present.
The overall sound is pretty neutral and the bass is tight, no complaints there, but I'm sure there's alternatives that would give me better results.

Hopefully someone can recommend me a good new cartridge to replace the Ortofon 2M Blue?

So far a few recommended candidates are:
- Ortofon 2M Black
- Audio Technica VM760SLC
- Goldring 1022 GX or up
- Dynavector Karat 17D3

If anyone could recommend one of these or others that:
- would specifically work well regarding the issue with the higher frequencies
- still gives me a solid bass and low-mid body
- are compatible with the RP8

That would be very much appreciated!

Thanks in advance
Old 30th October 2018
Here for the gear

Hi Poinzy, thanks for the suggestion!
I do touch up the recordings digitally in Izotope RX7 afterwards but it's not always easy to just EQ out temporary harshness that's mostly present when vocals/cymbals/fx are at a peak.
It's probably better to fix it at the source since I'm 99% sure that a better needle would immediately give me better (to me) sounding results.
Old 31st October 2018
Gear Addict
Al Rogers's Avatar

Don't rule out the Audio-Technica VM740ML.

I bought it thinking it would be an interim cartridge but it turned out to be a keeper. I prefer it over the Ortofon Black and it costs a lot less!

To be fair I liked the Ortofon Black a lot but I like the Audio Technica cartridge even more. it's a giant killer.

PS. I've read good reviews of the new Rega MC cartridge but haven't tried it. When I had a Rega I enjoyed the Exact but again I prefer the Audio Technica cartridge. By the way, it starts out sounding good and improves as it breaks in.
Old 1st November 2018
Gear Addict
Al Rogers's Avatar

In case you didn't know this the Audio Technica cartridges in the new line have interchangeable styli. You can upgrade a 740 to a 750 or 760 by upgrading the stylus.
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