Reads like you would be candidate for Lyra ETNA or Atlas. I've owned the Atlas, the ETNA is a little more “musical” but share similar personality. Both are top tier products.
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Thanks very much for your input. I am actually somewhat leaning toward the Atlas.
I guess it would have helped if I had also disclosed more of my system. I have the ARC Ref 10 Phono, the Soulution 721 Pre (no onboard Phono), the Acoustic Signature Ascona and I am planning on the Graham Elite. I have the Odin 1 phono cable and the rest of my wires are Valhalla 1 and 2.
Thanks for any help people can provide.
Agree with Lyra, ZYX, or any of the not yet mentioned top line Ortofon LOMC cartridges. They are very "neutral" to my ears in my system. I think Albert owns or owned the Airtight so perhaps he will comment on that one. Note also that this is a very subjective aspect of the hobby; you ultimately will make up your own mind.
I haven't heard either but I think I read here, maybe even written by Albert, that Air Tight has a warmer sound, Lyra is faster and more neutral. Albert has two tables and four arms and uses Air Tight, Lyra, Allnic and Koetsu. At least that's what his system shows.
He'll respond, he is here somewhere, just doesn't write much.
Dear Paul: Very nice system you own. In some ways your title in the thread is a little " weird " because ( IMHO ) there is no best cartridge for a specific loudspeaker or even a specific audio system.
" The D-3's have a mid-bass pronouncement at about 60 to 80 hz so I am looking for a cartridge that is flat ..."
well almost any cartridge ( even the inexpensive ones ) are flat in that part of the frequency spectrum.
Your loudspeakers has a problem down there because has restricted bass frequency response.
You have many choices for a cartridge other that the ones you name it and take in count that the price of an audio item can't tell us its real quality level performance. If I pay what you did it for your speakers I expect a first rate almost " perfect " performance but that was not the case with yours or at least not what you expderienced with.
You say you are " building " your audio system so you have from now a very long trip to arrive to your targets. Fortunatelly for you money is no object but even that money is not enough to achieve first rate system quality level performance.
If I was you and with out ask my first step will be to improve the quality level of those speakers. Doing this whatever cartridge you choose be sure that will shine at your place.
With all respect permit me to suggest to add a couple of powered subwoofers connected in true stereo fashion to liberate totally your Raidho's from 80hz and down. In this way you will have a better quality overall bass management handled by dedicated drivers and electronics designed in specific for that very hard frequency spectrum where the whole audio system distortions will goes dramatlically down against what you have right now and in the other side your D3 quality level performance will be elevated to a level you never imagine it can. Even the D5/7 can't beat the D3/subs combination quality level performance. If in the future you want to try it then look not for the more expensive subwoofer but for the one with the lower distortion at 20hz or lower.
The name of the game in audio is in the: audio system FINE TUNNING!
Regards and enioy the music,
Dear wattsperchannel: IMHO and due that you are building your system permit me to say that you have big " land " to improve what you already have and does not matters your choosed cartridge or cartridges.
If you already bought your cartridge then a very important subject could be: with which tonearms could mates the better and why?
right now or in the near future is a must to hear in your system different cartridges along the system improvements you can achieve. I can't say why you name it those three models when exist others from Clearaudio, Ortofon, ZYX, Dynavector, VDH, etc.
Example, the Colibri with the right whole set up is almost ( overall ) unbeatable.
Anyway, good luck in your endless quest of audio Nirvana.
Regards and enjoy the music,