DaVinci Tonearm

I guess, this one is quite rare. Made in Switzerland.
But anyone out there, who listened to it?
Hi Thomasheisig,

I have the 12 inch Da Vinci tonearm. My previous tonearm was a Schroeder. Both are world class arms and comparable, but obviously I prefer the Da Vinci. Why? One word: energy. There's just an inexplicable communication of emotional/musical energy that is conveyed by the Da Vinci arm. My turntable is a Verdier. My cartridge is a Dynavector XV-1s. My phono stage is Tom Evans Groove Pulse. I bought the arm from Jeffrey Catalano of High Water Sound in NYC. He has it set up on a TW Acustic turntable. You can set up an appointment any time to hear it. No brainer if you live in the NYC area.
Cool. Sounds exciting. Thank you for your answer. Great System, too. I will have a chance to listen to it, but will need some time.
Thomas,unless you will run two arms,why would you get rid of the Phantom,for a DaVinci?I have seen that(DaVinci) arm,and heard it in two systems.I simply would be deluding myself,if I implied that I could hear,and identify the impact of an arm,in an unfamiliar set up!

That being said,both set-ups underwhelmed me!Could have been any number of reasons.Most likely,I had not had my Starbucks extra caffeine at the time,so don't take my word on it.

BTW--I thought the fit and finish left alot to be desired.Especially at the asking price.I really do think you would do better with the Shroeder REF!!Let's be honest,regardless of the past.I have never heard one single criticism of this arm.Actually I have scoped the WEB for as much analog info,as I could find,in the last year,and the REF "ALWAYS" is on the SHORT list of BESTS!!

If you are not up to going in that direction,there is always the similarly well regarded Triplanar!Refined for a LONG time,so forget any of my past misgivings.The NEW Dynavector is darn nice too!Alot of potential in that design.Another I'd like to get my hands on!

BTW--The DaVinci just got a rather "luke warm" review,in Stereophile magazine.I think the reviewer was being polite in his comments.That was my interpretation.

Well,best of luck to you!!
If you can get hold of one you'll see they're very well made, easily as good as the Schroeder Ref. As I haven't heard it in my TT, I can't speak for its performance with an owner's authority but I do lust for it and would swap my Dyna DV507mkII in a heartbeat. TT: Simon Yorke S7 with dual tonearms: S7 + JA MC1B (silver); DV507mkII + XV1s.
Hm, everyone has it's own priorities, I use The Phantom and the Triplanar at the moment and I know an Owner of the DaVinci who uses a Kuzma Airline too and he said, the DaVinci is REALLY good. I haven't read the Stereophile Article but I think Mr. Fremer also has own ideas about products. Or Harry Pearson, or Jonathan Scull... Is there a "Best" Tonearm out there, maybe, but when it is a nightmare for adjusting or reliability, so what?
I like the Phantom and Triplanar very much, I think, they combine both my priorities at a very high level. I don't loose my hairs while listening with them.
But I am interested in opinions.
Thanks for your time.
Thomas, I'm not familiar with Da Vinci tonearm, but it is certainly a beautiful piece of art (with function though, hehe). I have another question that doesn't belong to this thread actually. What do you think of Japanese tonearms, like Ikeda 407? Are those arms not on par with the best arms from the Western World? I myself own a Fidelity Research FR-66S and it has an excellent build quality with a very decent sound.

Well, I ordered one.
Thomas,I wish you the best of luck with your new arm.I'll be thinking of you May 19th,when the most exciting book I've read in a long while is released as a movie."The DaVinci Code"!!--Don't miss it!!!!!---I hope you have less trouble unraveling the mystery of the "arm",than I had with the book -:)


You state "I do lust for it and would swap my Dyna DV507mkII in a heartbeat", is there any particular reasons why you would give up the 507 mkII?

Does it's it's 3 lb. weight cause probems with the balance of your Yorke 7?

The reason I ask is that I have been eyeing the two used 507 mkII's for sale here, yet can't find anyone with hands-on experience with the arm.

can you order me one, too? I don't have a table yet but I'm currently collecting tonearms. :) Three and counting!
Darkmoebius, my desire to replace the Dyna has less to do with its performance and more about my drooling everytime I see a DaVinci ;) As to its 3lb weight, it doesn't cause problems with the Yorke. If I have to nitpick I've noticed when setting VTF and comparing a "hundredths accurate" digital scale that the gradations on the arm's VTF adjuster are off. But then it's also possible the scale is off... so take this with a grain of salt, I need another digital scale to compare and be sure.
Hi Thomas,
well why did you not go for the new Schroeder Reference SQ?
And what kind of mc cartridge do you want to mount on this
TA ?

regards KHA
Funny you should mention the digital scale issue,again.BTW-Dan this should be of interest to you.--My "sporty" friends have squashed the Winds multi purchase,and decided to go for that cute "new" guage,being advertised for three digit accuracy.I must admit it does look great,and has gotten good feedback,from new owners.I'll be getting mine in a few weeks,and will keep you posted!

Right now I couldn't do much anyway,as my COSMOS is in for the latest update!
Has someone else experiences with the Da Vinci? Especially wit a Dynavector XV-1s?
Thomas, are you ready for a report of your impressions?
Hi Breezer, HI Dan_ed,

well I use the Davinci 12 Inch with a Takeda Miyabi
Cartridge. The build of the Davinci is perfect.
Well I did compare in my own System the Davinci
againt the schroeder dps both mounted a Takeda Miyabi
and the Davinci outperforms the schroeder dps in
terms of more precise mid and a much deeper bass.
Thanks for that comparison, Karl-Heinz. I'm curious about how easy cartridge alignment is on the Da Vinci's since there seems to be single wholes for the mounting screws and no slots to allow movement of the cartridge on the head.

Also, how does this tonearm compare with your Phantom and SME V?

You said above that the DaVinci outperfromed the Schroeder DPS. Further above, you asked Thomashesig why he did not purchase the Schroeder Reference SQ instead of the DaVinci. Do you have experience comparing the SQ to the DV? What is the difference. Do you plan to get one?
HI Dan_ed

The DaVinci arm uses SME style mount. Do the holes are just as SME and the base slide forward or back for proper alignment.

Hi Paul, I did see that adjustment for overhang, but what if the cartridge needs to be twisted slightly to align the stylus in the grooves?
HI Dan_ed

I will be getting mine soon. A 12". I think the diameter of the holes are large enough to make the zeinth adjustment properly.

Hi Aoliviero,

well I did just hear the Davinci against the Schroeder
SQ on an AAA-Forum in Germany. But the Cartridges where
quite different, so that the comparision is not worth
I will try to get a Schroeder SQ and will compare both
with the ZYX Universe / Orpheus and Takeda Miyabi on the
Raven AC, with each TA mounted with the same System.
And the same phonostage.

regard Karl-Heinz
Thanks Paul, I wondered if that might be the case. Anyone heard the 9" model?

Thank you for your reply. Let us know how it goes. How do you like your TW Acustic? Ever listen to the Brinkman Balance?

Just for additional information (sure wish I could say I had listened to this myself); in the latest issue (6/06) of the German magazine LP, the combination TWA Raven AC / Da Vinci Grandezza / Clearaudio Goldfinger is described as "sonic nirvana", whereby the Da Vinci is said to have been the decisive factor in "disciplining" the "pitiless" Clearaudio enabling it to deliver its full potential in a "magical harmony".
I just got my 12" Da Vinci Grandezza arm with their $2K cable (same copper wiring with RCA's) & will try it this weekend with the Dynavector DTR XV1S on my Verdier La Platine.
Then with the ZYX Universe S-SB 2.4 & finally with the Clearaudio Insider Reference Wood - It may take a month or so, but I'll get the proper combo 100%.
BTW - From what I'm told - The 12" Grandezza arm is probably the best arm match for the Verdier La Platin.
I also just ordered the Graham Phantom & Dynavector 507 Mk. II tonearms & it should be quite a shootout!
Stay Tuned!
Wow Paladin, that is a world-class shootout. Can't wait to hear your impressions.

3 totally different approaches to arm design.
Well we set it up yesterday with the Dynavector DRT XV1S & it is mind blowing!
The Grandezza is a true piece of art, built like a aircraft carrier!
Workmanship is probably the best I have ever seen.
Cartridge needs time to break in, but sounds fantastic.
Had to raise the armboard about 1/2", but set up was rather easy (thanks to Ted) & just about perfect the first time out.
Tracking @ 2 grams for now.
Da Vinci cables (RCA) are stiff & need to be tied down to release tension.
So far, maybe the best I've heard to date & completely blows away the Tri-Planer VII arm with same cartridge that I heard last week.
Bass, mids & highs are truly wondefull - very neutral sounding & live performances are almost live & very revealing.
Will try the Clearaudio next in a week or two (my personal favorite) & then the Universe S-SB.
I may have found what I was hoping for, but will not know until I compare all 3.
Will set up the other arms (once they arrive) on the Verdier & compare every combination until I get it right twice & keep two!
Third arm will go on the Oracle Anniversary & replace the SME V5.
All for now.
Most interesting report. Can you expand beyond "completely blows away the Triplanar"? In what ways is does it better the Triplanar?


I doubt the comparison with the Triplanar can be valid if the Dynavector is not broken in. It takes time to break in & changes constantly during the break in process. In addition the breakin takes 100 hours or more. Last, you will need to keep VTA & VTF constant between both arms for the comparison to be valid.
One advantage from the DaVinci Arm is, the Set Up is VERY simple and compared to other Arms, this Arm holds it. I agree, this is indeed a wonderful sounding Arm. It has a kind of rightness from information and timing, which is impressing. Well, I think, a discussion about "THE BEST" Arm is difficult, because everyone has his own kind of priorities. Kha, no. I am not seriously interested in that Arm.
Hi Thomas,

I did a comparison Davinci against Schroeder mounted on a DPS. Both had the Takeda Miyabi, well what can I say is that the Davinci has more precise highs and mids than the Schroeder. I have heard from one guy in the
german aaanalog forum owning a schroeder reference and a schroeder dps both where mounted on a pluto, he switched over to graham phantom he is using a transfiguration orpheus.



I understand you opinion but from my experience there is no absolute. No 2 cartridges are 100% the same and in addition different arms will react differently with different cartridges. Thomas' ZYX was much better in my SQ while my ZYX is better in my Ikeda. It is even better depending on the headshell, so far prefering the Dynavector headshell over the Ikeda headshell. There really is no true rule. Kind of funny. We need to experiment & use our ears. No forums can replace that.

Mind you I have not heard anything as natural in sound as the Schroder.
Hi Dgad,

yes we need to use our ears and that is what came out of that comparison between the two TA.

During the comparision we also rotated the two cartridges in both TA. So that each arm did use each cartridge.
A friend of mine who builds and attunes pianos, had the
same opinion that the davinci had overall better performance than the schroeder. Well this is our opinion
and my system.


Hi Karl-Heinz,

Have you any experience with the shorter length Da Vincis? I'm curious how much difference there is in the shorter models.


Hi Dan,

no, as I only have the 12 Inch Davinci.



I think Thomas has the 9 Inch Davinci.
I have the 10 inch DaVinci.
Has anyone compared the 10' vs the 12" DaVinci? also vs the Kuzma Airline?
thanks. Louis

The 10 vs 12 would be a Mass question in terms of cartridge matching. Also some cartridges work better in 12inch arms than 9 inch. I haven't but I would bet a cartridge that is very low compliance will benefit on the 12 inch. The Kuzma is reported here to prefer very light weight & light VTF cartridges. Correct me if I am wrong.

I believe the mass of the arm, not necessarily the lenght, has to be matched with the compliance of the cartridge.
I used a Kuzma with a medium compliance Koetsu Jade with excellent results.
I would speculate the 12 inch is smoother sounding than the 10 inch, due to less tracking error.
@ Richard / Paladin: How did your experiences took their way? Can you say more to the DaVinci Grandezza and XV-1s?