Allaerts MC2 Finish

Has anyone heard this mystical gem?

If you have witnessed a rare appearance of this beauty, pls kindly describe your experience with it. Also if you know what phono stage it was riding on, let me know.

I have had one for several years. I must admit that its very low output has caused me many headaches. I have been using it with the Loricraft phono which presently is not imported into the U.S. You need a 845 ohm load on it. I am presently using a Decca Jubilee which is quite different in sound and soundstage.
I've heard one several times for a couple of hours each time at GT Audio in the UK. I have a MC1B myself (on a Schroeder Model 2 and Platine Verdier). Certainly in the set up at GT Audio, the Finish sounded very musical - natural timbre, deep soundstage, good dynamics and tracks well. At GT Audio, it was on a Schroeder Reference, DPS TT, with Avantgarde Trio horns. The amps were GT Audio's own TRON tube brand. Graham Tricker has been making high end tube amps for years. His circuit are very quiet ie with his Meteor tube preamp, 300Bs and Trios - silence when the volume is turned to full on phono! By the way they sound great too - so much so that I will be buying one of his Meteor preamps.
Hi Topoxforddoc
Its great to hear from a fellow Schroeder Model 2 owner! Mine is on the Kuzma Stabi with a Dynavector Te Kaitora mounted on it. With the 0.2mv output, it does pose some problems for phono stages. I'm just wondering if the Herron with 66db is sufficient for it. The TK is 0.25mv and its very quiet.

One other question is compared to the MC1b, which I'm quite familar with, does the MC2F have better dynamics? While the MC1b has great detail retrieval, I felt it presented the instruments as a whole and not as individuals - very coherent, but somehow I longed for a little more in dynamics.

Lastly, is it worth to spring the extra $$$ for the MC2Finish in your opinion?
I also use the Allaerts MC2 Finish in a Schroeder arm, the Loricraft version of the Reference. It is mounted on my Garrard 501. I am impressed with its dynamics, wide sound stage, and tracking. I think it has the best channel separation of any cartridge.

The Decca, of course, is unrivaled by it dynamics and the Jubilee tracks pretty well.
Dear Cmk: One of my cartridges is this MC 2 finish gold. This is the most natural sound reproduction cartridge that I hear, it has an exellent tonal balance and the right timbre on the instruments, if you have the right phono stage then you can have a cartridge with an exellent dynamics reproduction and that do an exellent job from top to bottom.
You already have a tonearm that I think it will be a good mate for it ( but you have to ask to Jan Allaerts about it ). I use my MC 2 with and Audiocraft AC 4400 and this is a hard to beat combo.
For the phono stage you can go for the CTC,Pass or Rowland Cadence. I'm using a custom design ( my own ).
BTW, you have a nice cartridge on the Dynavector if you like it then you have to hear the XV-1 that is a truly exellent cartridge too, specially with classic music.
Regards and enjoy the music.
Dear Cmk: If you decide to go for the MC2 you have to look a phono stage that not only can handle at natural output levels ( high gain ) with out noise, you have to look for an accurate RIAA equalization: that's it that the RIAA deviation ( 20 hz to 20 khz ) stay between +,- 0.5 db to 1.0 db, at least.
It is not admisible a bigger deviation ( yes, any one can hear minuscles deviations on the RIAA if we have the resolution on our audio system. Normally the RIAA deviations take place at both frecuency extremes where we usually want " more " not " less " ). when you are working with this kind of top high end products and when you want the best music reproduction, but if your standards are lower then you can have any phono stage.
BTW, the FM Acoustics is a good choice too.
Regards and enjoy the music.
Thanks Tbg and Rauliruegas for your informative replies.

My phono should not have problems with the 0.2mv output of the Finish. The Herron VTPH-1mc is one of the best available, RIAA 1 Hz to beyond 100 kHz, 20 Hz to 20 kHz ±0.1 dB, S/N ratio 80 dB, A weighted, inputs shorted, AC polarity set.

Rauliruegas, you mentioned the XV-1s too. How does it compare with the MC2 Finish?
Dear Cmk: These two cartridges are a little diferent: the XV 1 has a more up front presentation and the MC 2 has a more ressesed one. I can say that the XV 1 is a little more " alive ". Both are top performers in some recordings I prefer the MC 2 and in others the XV 1. If I have to choose: I buy both.
BTW, I do a mistake with the point and cero about the RIAA deviation it has to read like this: 20hz to 20khz +,- 0.05 db to 0.1 db. Yours it's ok, it's really fine. There are not many phono stages that can have this RIAA deviation. I hope that your phono stage works with out ( internal or external ) stepup transformers.
Regards and enjoy the music.
Dear Raul
Thanks, I think I know what you mean about the MC2 and XV1.

To complicate matters a little more, there's also the Koetsu RS Plat in the same price range. I've heard the Urushi and liked the sound, but not the RSP. How does the Koetsu RSP compare with these other carts?

Thanks again for the quick replies.
Dear Cmk: I own, too, the RSP. This cartridge is a big improvement to the traditional " Koetsu Sound ". Now we have and extended, clear an open sound on the treble and the bass is tighter, better pitch and more detailed. It is a good performer, and better than the Urushi ( the RSP it is in another league when you are comparing to the Urushi ). If you like the Urushi sound, then your best choice will be the RSP. Buy it! .You will love it.
Regards and enjoy the music.