Cartridge & phono preamp for Denon DP-60L

A few years back I purchased a new pre-pro (Denon AVP-8000) for HT and music. I was aware that this unit had no phono stage so I had to pack my DP-60L turntable away until another day. Well that time has come for something new. I thought of setting up my old Denon gear (POA1500 & PRA1000) setup which had a very nice mm/mc phono stage, but I have no extra room to have two systems setup, well I do but try and tell my wife that. My question is I need to purchase a phono preamp and perhaps a new cartridge for my TT and get back into listening to my collection of albums. I have been using a Micro Acoustic mm cartridge, which is still mounted on the Denon and sounded very good, but it is old. I would like to stay under $700.00 for both pieces if possible. Any suggestions of what would work well on the Denon would be greatly appreciated.

Showing 3 responses by johnnantais

Oops, I mean this leaves you with $500, if you want to spend that much. I believe the spercharged Gram Amp 2 sells fr something like $350. So change left over if you go Shure. The Shure is one of my personal favorites: extreme tonal neutrality, great bass and Prat, relatively insensitive to tonearms, tracks anything.
It's hard to say what will work well specifically on your Denon, but one suggestion is a Shure V15VxMR, connected to whatever Gram phono preamp you can buy with the rest. Since this leavs you with $300 - the Shure is $200 at Jack's Music Factory, this means you can get the Gram Phono 2 SE (or whatever the souped-up verison is called). The Shure is unmatched in certain areas, though it is reasonably-priced, performs very well in all kinds of areas, and does not have hum problems. Another more obvious suggestion is a high-output Denon, or a low-output Denon DL103, and switch to the Rotel MM/MC phono pre.
Problem with the Grado Platinum, which I own and love, is hum issues with a direct-drive turntable. In this regard, the Shure is a safer bet. Someone else with experience of direct-drive and Grado could tell you more. But lovely as the Grado is, the Shure is better in some ways, especially bass reach and power, and tracking, and tonal accuracy. In other areas, however, like capturing the resonance of instruments and the decay of notes, the Grado does tube-like things which it takes a tube system to hear. Good luck!