cartridge recommendation for Thorens TD166 MKII


Hi 
Looking for a new cartridge for my Thorens turntable, preferably under $400 and moving Magnet, NOT Moving coil. would love top try something lively but not brash. Am currently using a Grado G+ which is rather old now.
thanks for any suggestions in advance.
F.
plasticllc
Audio Technica VM540ML @$249 is clear and clean with plenty of sparkle. Give it a week to run in.
Thanks, was looking at this one. has great reviews.
and don't forget, the 540 has one of the best midranges going. one of my fav  carts for under a kilo buck.
Grace F9 with F14 (RS14 or US-14) stylus would be nice.
New type of RS-9E also good for lower price.

Another option is Grace F8C (Custom series) with stylus from LEVEL II like blue RS-8F (Shibata type). "Custom" (F8C) was the latest in F8 series before they release Grace LEVEL II ultimate series. F8C is inexpensive model, it can be significantly upgraded with LEVEL II stylus (which is definitely not cheap). 
I have the same turntable. I am using an Ortofon 2M Bronze (MM) Verso cartridge. The stylus is a nude fineline and is detailed and pleasing. If you go this route, make sure to buy the Verso version, which is specifically designed for Thorens-style undermount headshell/cartridge configurations. The Verso version is just outside your price range at @ $450.00. As a bonus, if you ever choose to upgrade, you can swap in an Ortofon 2M Black (MM) Shibata replacement stylus.
Both the Ortofon and AT are very good cartridges. The AT is probably the better value and the ML stylus is great. 

@chakster, most people do not want to buy used cartridges and do not romanticize about the old days. They want to get a cartridge, plug it in and be done with it. You should start a thread on antique cartridges and get together with the guys that collect old cartridges. 
@chakster, most people do not want to buy used cartridges and do not romanticize about the old days. They want to get a cartridge, plug it in and be done with it. You should start a thread on antique cartridges and get together with the guys that collect old cartridges.


@mijostyn before you flooded audiogon with your posts in every thread, people actually discussed all cartridges (best from the golden era vs. new overpriced inferior stuff).

If you don’t noticed it yet, I want to remind you that Denon DL-103 was designed in the 60’s and people are still raving about it. Nothing changed in this cartridge since it was invented in the 60’s and it’s still in production in Japan. Some people ready to invest over $1k to modify this old cartridge.

Ortofon SPU is very old design and people are crazy about it, nothing changed much in the basic models of SPU produced today.

$5k Audio-Technica ART-1000 inspired by Victor Direct Couple design from the 70’s.

Some new cartridge designers are inspired by cantilever-less Ikeda invented in the 70’s.

New Fuuga cartridge designer inspired by Miyabi Standard by Takeda (who made Mark Levinson cartridges) ...

And I recall ONLY moving coil cartridges now, the situation with modern MM cartridges is terrible. You’d better read in Peter Lederman’s thread what inspired him and you will find Grace MM and Stanton MI.


If you don’t know the history the value of your contribution about cartridges is ZERO!

You don’t even owned some of the best LOMC or MM/MI.

Everything you post about new cartridges (you always mention just a few of them) users can read in the modern reviews online, but reviewers will not tell you about real gems (not available from distributors and shops) and this is the problem, because they don’t want to compare those new cartridges to something special from the golden age. This is why we have forums like this, but because people like you this is extremely boring to read when it comes to cartridges.

You’d better read J.Carr’s posts about some special vintage LOMC cartridges if you prefer LOMC. Some of them are really exceptional like FR-7fz for example.

Ignore my posts, because I am wasting time replying to your pointless posts, stick to your few modern cartridges and be happy! Probably in your age it’s too late to experiment with something that not so easy to find, but I am full of enthusiasm. I really hope this forum will not be a club for those who over 60+ , because you guys are terrible with your skepticism!

Sometimes I feel like I came to graveyard with my recommendations about cartridges.
It’s like a conversation with a tombstone.