Cartridge upgrade for Pro-Ject Debut 3/SB...

Hi I'm new to this forum, seems really great, read through lots of threads as research into what to get, but wanted to ask because I have a few specifics.

I recently bought the Pro-Ject Debut 3/SB, model with SpeedBox and the basic Pro-Ject MM phono stage built in- still fitted with standard Ortofon OM5E cart/stylus. It's connected to a JVC AV Amp/receiver that goes out to two three-way JBL bookshelf speakers. I'm loving getting into vinyl, but something is not giving me the punch I'm after. I have one record -TV on the Radio's Dear Science on 180-gram vinyl- that sounds positively phenomenal (to me anyway), totally blows the CD out of the game. But the rest of my records, a dozen or so new ones from classical to soft folk, to noise rock and all things pretentious in between, don't have the same kick. I've heard them on other systems sounding great, with a warmth and spacial awareness that feels really organic. One thing I do like about my current set up, though, is that it's not boomy at all. Muddy, pervasive bass frustrates me because I feel like I need to be constantly playing with the EQ.

One small problem I learnt through these forums is the issue of Inner groove distortion. It annoys the hell out of me, turning any high Ss into a mess on two of my favourite albums (and favourite songs, none the less!).

I've read nothing but contempt for the Ortofon OM5E, so this is where I ask for cartridge advice. I've given it about 20 hours of burn in time. I noticed a small change, but to be totally honest, I can't pin down exactly what other than feeling clearer, if less pleasant to listen to.

I've found a few alternatives that I could stretch my price bracket to:
Shure M97xE - read very mixed responses, great price though and promises the warm sound I think I like (I'm seriously the most vague person ever)
Ortofon 2M Red - I like the easy attachment promised, read that it is quite warm, but that it doesn't do much for inner groove distortion
Ortofon OM10 - nice and cheap, easily fitted into current cart, read it's a bit lifeless

I liked the sound of the Denon carts but my inbuilt stage is MM only.

If anyone has input on anything - carts, other suggestions on improving playback, etc. - I'd love to hear it. If you're still reading this far you are incredibly patient! I'm a total novice, so all help is appreciated!
Thank you

I also have the Debut III with Speedbox. I run it through the phone stage of an Onkyo A-9555 to Paradigm Atoms. I recently upgraded to the 2M Red. It was fairly easy to set up, although after reading what some people go through to set up their cartridges I am sure my setup job was not optimal. In any case, I merely aligned the cartridge visually and tightened down the screws. It played fine with no obvious ill effects from my first cartridge mounting attempt. The most noticeable change is that the cartridge puts out a lot more bass than the OM5. I was shocked at the sound that came out of my little Atom Monitors. I wouldn't call it "boomy", it is fairly tight and well-defined with my setup, but I think bass response depends on your room and speaker positioning as much as the speakers themselves. To me, the sound is warmer than the OM5, but not to a great degree. Again, these are the only two cartridges I've had in my setup, so take my advice for what it's worth. Long story short, I think the 2M Red was a very nice upgrade for $99. Note that you also need a heavier counterweight to use it with the Debut III.

I'm also a TV on the Radio fan. I'd like to pick up that LP.

Good luck,
The high output Denon Moving coils will work with your MM preamp input. The DL-110 or DL-160 are candidates for consideration.
My brother works for a store that stocks Ortofon, so he's checking the cost price of a 2M Red for me tomorrow. I'll see what kind of price comes back. Thanks for your input!

I just did some reading on high-output MCs, thanks for telling me they'd be compatible. I seem to only ever read fantastic things about those two Denon carts. One question I have: If I was to install a new Denon on my turntable myself, would I need any extra kind of measurement equipment or particular special knowledge to get the alignment/everything else correct?
I seem to remember reading that the steel platter of the Debut III causes a problem with the Denon MCs. You may want to research further before buying or you may need to also buy an acrylic platter to replace the steel one if you go with the MC.
I can't resist in suggesting change your amp/phono stage first and you will find they are the problem.
Yeah I did some reading and the Denon MCs don't play well with the Debut 3's platter. I don't want to buy a new acrylic platter, so I'm going to go for the Ortofon 2M Red. When I get it and break it in I'll report back on my findings incase anyone else is thinking of doing a similar thing.
Nwatts, have you completed your upgrade on the TT cart? I have a Music Hall MMF-2.2 that I'd like to upgrade, and I'm seeking advice on replacing the Tracker cart.