Bent Stylus- Clearaudio Virtuoso

I was about to put on a record and noticed my stylus was bent to the left (3 and 2 yr old). I bent it back a little with a tweezer. It's not completely centered, but it sounds fine. What should I do? I'm sure despite it sounding fine something is not right.
34a5ede4 8845 48ed 8a21 3b106f9c3ffcpatrickrealtor76
It should be checked out by a qualified dealer or Clearaudio. Playing this way could easily damage your vinyl, which is presumably worth a lot more than a cartridge... I wouldn't risk it.
You can easily replace and upgrade the stylus if you are so inclined. Audio Technica is the OEM. For instructions and help, go here:

You could also send it to Soundsmith for cantilever/stylus replacement. Any of his options would be an upgrade, including his least expensive ($150). If you send it to Clearaudio they will probably charge 50% of the price of a new one and you'll have the stock stylus.
Thanks for both responses- I'm going to call Soundsmith today. I did spend a little more time and got the stylus completely straight and I don't notice any difference in the sound, but I don't want to chance anything. Spending $150 on an $800 cartridge is a fair insurance policy.

The Soundsmith Level 1 upgrade ($150), will not be one of those "I think I hear a difference" type of changes. You will kick yourself for not doing this sooner. You have not heard what a really amazing cartridge this Virtuoso is until you get that original 'fat' elliptical stylus replaced.
There is nothing wrong with your cartridge, there was nothing wrong before you messed with it. Once the stylus sits in the groove it centers and you'll all set. How can this damage your records? If it ain't broke don't fix it.
Griffithds- I'm considering the second level upgrade. Worth the extra $250?

I've had both the Level 1 and the Level 3 installed in various cartridges. Both made huge differences. I would expect the Level 2 to do the same, but (isn't there always a but), anything other than the level 1 will be changing your Virtuoso into something other than a Virtuoso.
If you have a steady hand, you can buy any of the AT 95e replacement stylus's from LPgear (Shabata $130, or Vital Line $90), do a little trimming of the plastic housing and have something a lot better than your original. It you want to go cheaper, yet still better than your original .4 X.7 mil stylus, go to eBay and buy one of those Audio Technica AT 92ECD cartridges being sold by Newegg. Their $30 for the whole cartridge. Diamond tip is .3 X.7 mil but tracks at only 1.25 grams. Much better than your 2 gram Virtuoso. Same trimming of the housing will be needed but then, it's your money! Don't misunderstand. The Sound Smith upgrades are great but for a Virtuoso or even the Maestro, their are many other options available if you only are willing to put forth a little effort!
BTW: Everything that I have stated above, I have done. At the moment, I have a AT 150MLx stylus in my Maestro. This was not accomplished by the trimming method but by doing an actual transplant of the stylus. I am not allowed to mention other audio web sites on this forum but there is a site that takes you through the entire process with pictures. Contact me for that sites location or do a search. You will find it.

Regarding the Virstuoso in particular I think that Fleib's
advice is the best. I have a loyalty problem between Fleib
who is my friend and Don who is my brother. I disagree with
Don's retip advice. Not because it is much more expensive
but because of the method by which a retip is done. The new
cantilever/stylus combo is glued in the cut (shortened) original
tube (aka cantilever). Because the stylus is usually also
glued in the cantilever the rigidity of the
new cantilever/stylus combo become problematic. Learning
from other one errors is the cheapest and rhe best way of
learning. I made two 'upgrades' on my Virtuoso. One with
the boron cntilever the other with aluminum , both with
line contact styli. I want mention the price; too embarrassing.
By looking with my magnifying glass I was
able to clearly see were the new cantilever is glued in
the existing (rest) of the original cantilever.
From my friend Fleib I learned how to do the 'transplant'
but, alas, after my expensive 'upgrades'. The donor was
the AT 95 stylus in my case. If I remember well Fleib spend
about $600 on his 'donors' by killing them in the
learning process. My first transplant was perfect and that
is why I think that learning from other one errors is so
I think I am going to play my records for the next month, wait until my new Odyssey Stratos Mono amps arrive, send the cartridge to Soundsmith and get either the level 2 or 3 upgrade and break in my amps with my digital end (Schiit-Bifrost and 2000 lossless CD rips) By the time my cartridge arrives I will have the amps partially broken in and I'll be dazzled by my cartridge.
I haven't sent my Virtuoso to Soundsmith, but by all reports that's a good choice. A few posters were extremely pleased with results. You might have to change the arm height slightly and Peter will probably recommend checking azimuth, but if your experience is like theirs, you'll have amazing resolution while retaining musicality.

The original recommendation was for level 1 - tapered cantilever/nude elliptical. At one point I transplanted an ATN7V which is similar with a .2 x .7 elliptical. Results were very nice, without extended contact of course. Some people like a transplanted ATN440MLa or ATN150MLX. I tried a shibata replacement stylus and some people say the Vivid line (LpGear) is the best value and about as close as you can get.

When you send in your cart it would be a good idea to indicate exactly how and where the cantilever was bent. If it was just off to the side a little it might not matter.