arm choices for a Garrard 401

Hi all,

I been told there's room on my plinth for a second arm. Only room for a 9" maybe 10" arm.

ATM I have a 12" 750L Jelco arm. With the possible carts Denon 103 with ESC mods. Benz Micro Wood SL, Benz Micro Ace Mono, also a Ortofon 78 cart for a recent gift from my dad of his 200 or so collection of shellac

My initial thinking was to have the mono cart on the second arm.. With a maybe a occasional change over 78 play..


Someone suggested that I should have both carts on the best arm I can afford? So the question arises, should I buy the same arm for both carts?? Doesn't sound the most cost effective way does it....

As I have another deck, a Gyrodec currently with a SME IV, someone said perhaps keep the mono cart on the Garrard and just play stereo on the Gyrodec... But that seems rather restrictive. This refutes the suggestion earlier to have the best arm possible... Then doesn't that mean I should have the best deck I can afford rather than two decks? then that begs the question which goes, then should I sell both and get the best deck I can afford for the carts I own??? It would never end..

ATM I'd still like to keep the Garrard but I'm not sure about the Gyrodec..
I could take the SME IV off the gyro and use it as a second arm on the Garrard..

My budget for a arm might depend on whether I go for a second arm or one main one.. I have already been offered a Graham 2.2 with a second wand...

Any suggestions to help me think this through would be great..

Just get a second Jelco and sell the Gyro/SME.
On my Garrard 401, I'm using a Dynavector 501 arm, which I purchased here on A'gon for $1300. It has worked very well with all the cartrridges I've used with it.

Zu Denon 103R, Acutex M320 STR, and Dynavector XX2MKII have all worked very well. With spare headshells, and set up done previously, I can change carts in five minutes or less.

This, for me, has proven to be the best option, other than the expense of another tonearm. In my rather limited experience, the DV 501 arm rates as one of the best I've heard.

Hope you find what you're looking for, regards,
So dan,

Your saying that the Dynavector arms can handle most carts. Would you think that would include SPI carts??

Take a look at the Transfi Terminator tonearm. Read Dgarretson's review here and on AudioAsylum.
I have my restored and replinthed Garrard 401 mated with an Origin Live Illustrious Mk.3c tonearm and I'm very pleased. Cartridge is a Lyra Delos.

Good Luck!
Hi Redglobe

Down the track I might want to try a SPU cart. My latest idea is to stick with a SME style cart connection, but have a arm that can be easily adjusted for the different carts VTA etc.. So I can either stay with my Jelco and perhaps add the Peter Riggle VTAF to make VTA easier. Or consider something like the new ortofon RS-309D perhaps a SME M2-12R.. Would they give that much more performance for the price???

Hi Beetlebum just looked at your system pics.. Your 401 is nicely restored..
The OL arm looks good but again as above I would like to change carts frequently...
I have an Ortofon 12" 309D arm on a restored 401. The detachable head shell allows the flexibility of trying different carts . Currently, I have a mono Miyajima BE and a SPU, the Ortofon Silver Meister.
Kensell21, I do not have familiarity with the cartridges you mention other than a Denon 103R and DLS1. I mentioned the Transfi Terminator tonearm, since if I were starting over, that would be the arm I would purchase.

Visit Vic's site and familiarize yourself with the arm and read the reviews here and elsewhere. Essentially, the arm works with any cartridge. The Tomahawk wands are inexpensive and it is practical to have various cartridges pre-mounted and swapped out.