Arm upgrade for Gyrodec SE, could use some help

Hi All,
I have a modest rig that includes:

- JA Michell Gyrodec SE (~$2400)
- Benz L0.4 MC cartridge (~$1250)
- Alphason HR-100S MCS tonearm (unknown)
- Sonic Frontiers SF-Phono1 Phono stage (~$2000)

It seems to me that the old Alphason "S" curved arm is a bit of a weak link at this point (any opinions on that assertion?), so I've been thinking about an upgrade. There are several options, and here is where I could use an opinion or two:

1) JA Michell TecnoArm - rebuilt RB-250, is it worth $1100?

2) RB-300 - probably the most common arm on Gyrodecs, and at $500 seems to be a reasonable price point. Better than the Alphason?

3) RB-700 - don't know much about it, but in the price range of the TecnoArm.

4) JWM-9T - Not sure it will fit, but beautiful arm that is well regarded ($2100)

5) SME 309 - Similar price point to the JWM, but again, will this work well in my system?

so that is my situation, I'd appreciate any opinions and recommendations you have!



Rest of system:

DK MkII Integrated
SFCD-1 CD player
Silverline Sonata III speakers (Thanks Grant!)
AU-24 / Harmonic Tech / Cardas
Here is an arm that you should look at. I am expecting mine next week and it will replace a rewired RB-300 w/Tecno Weight & VTA adjuster.

Audio Mods

While I agree that the Audio Mod arms are very good, your Alphason arm, IMHO, is one of the best arms ever made. I owned a couple of the HR-100S MCS arm on different tables and always found them to be top performers.

In your setup, I might try a new cartridge first. Maybe a Lyra Dorian, Argo, Helikon or a Dynavector.
Wow, I don't think that the venerable Alphason is the weak link by any stretch of the imagination. I would look at almost everything before that arm. Actually the whole rig looks pretty well put together. How about some detail work, tube swapping, AC power delivery (dedicated line, outlets, power cords), room treatment, or just some nice records. If you are set on an equiptment upgrade, I would look first at the phono cartridge.
Agree with Mofimadness and Viridan 100%. You have a very good front end. The Alphason is an excellent arm. If I were to change anything it would be the amp and I'm not even so sure about that.
For what it is worth, the Michell TecnoArm is miles better than a stock Rega RB300. Expensive? It is the equal to the SME IV on a Gyrodec, and the latter costs 4-6 times as much.

I haven't heard any of the other arms suggested so I can't comment further.
I have the gyrodec se with a rb300 with michell tecno weight and incognito wire and soundsmith smmc-1 cartridge. Sounds very good but as always looking for something better. I am considering the Trans-fi linear tracking arm. It look and sound very interesting at a somewhat reasonable price in this hobby. Google it and look at audiogon discussion forum. Doesn't address your question but provides something else to consider.
I started out with an Incognito rewired RB300 on my Gyrodec and moved to a used SME309. The SME is much more refined and quiet, but the RB300 had a certain beefy, solid quality that I can imagine some people preferring. I paid $1100 for the 309 and think it's one of the best analog purchases I ever made.

Note that the SME alignment method work best with cartridges with a 9.5mm mouting hole to stylus distance. I think this *should* work OK with the Benz, but I remember my Benz L2 tracking better on the RB300 (I "downgraded" to an AT33PTG, which I love, even though it's a little too compliant for the SME).
All - thanks very much for your responses, frankly I had no idea the Alphason was such a great arm! I may look at upgrading the cartridge at some point, but great feedback...