Cart recommendations for MG-1 tonearm

I'm considering buying an MG-1 tonearm and I'm interested in cartridge recommendations. I know that the Grado Reference Master is recommended, but for the money I'd rather get something like the Shelter 501. But, I'm concerned that the compliance on the Shelter is too low.

So, for those who have purchased this arm, I'd be really interested in what cartridge you've found that works well with it.

Perhaps more to the point, does anyone happen to know the effective mass of it?


Paul Ebert
I've been watching for a reply to your query and can't resist replying any longer.

The MG-1 looks interesting although the maker isn't selling it outside the US at present. Outlier who posts here has fitted a Zyx but did have problems with it jumping.

The manufacturer is the best person to tell you its effective mass. My hunch is that it's quite low and you're right about low compliance cartridges not matching. I would consider the higher end Grados, a Musicmaker (which is the cart of preference with the Opus2 Cantus passive linear tracker) or even a Shure V15.
I don't know the effecive mass of the MG-1 tonearm. I am using a Grado Reference Sonata (6.5g / 20CU Compliance) and I am having no issues with tracking or resonance with this arm.

There is an oil damping tray which is supplied to current owners after 1 year of ownership. If there are resonances due to cartridge/Arm incompatibilities, then the oil trough would minimize any of those issues. I don't know why the manufacturer does not supply the damping tray initially but I suspect, he wants current owners to become compentent with setup and tuning before installation of the damping trough. I would suspect the damping trough in the hands of the inexperienced which would make a cartridge more vulnerable to damage. (That's an accurate description of my situation!)

The manufacturer does respond quickly to email questions. His email is accessible thru his website. He also frequents this forum and may respond directly.
IMHO, and I may be wrong, of course, but regular compliance computations do not apply to most parallel trackers. Side-to-side movement of MG-1 can be easily controlled by liquid damping, thus accomodating almost any cartridge. I have used many cartridges on my MG-1, and have had only great results (exception was Grado Sonata, which exibited the usual cibilance problem). My Madrigal Carnegie I sounds and tracks great in it, Sheletr 901 sings, the lowly Signet MR 5.0 is as great as it can be, and even my cherished Koetsu Onyx sounds fantastic, and tracks well, and that's without damping! I don't know how it happens, given that arm tube only weighs 28 grams (I believe), but this is from my experience. And bass that I'm getting is truly earth-shaking...