Grain/Distortion heard on Inner 1/4 of LP

I've been adjusting this and that with my new Clearaudio Emotion/Virtuoso setup, and I thought I had things tuned in pretty well, but now all the albums I listen to exhibit pretty bad distortion when listening to the inner 1/4 of an LP. Up until that point, everything sounds clean and superb. I've meticulously realigned my cart several times and adjusted overhang to the point where I don't think it could be any better when using the naked eye. I also raised my VTA to assist in dynamic and bass response.

I was told to solve this problem I need to adjust my VTF, but I've been messing around with that too and can't seem to get the distortion to go away. I've played with anti-skate as well, but the distortion is coming evenly from both channels, so I don't believe that is the issue.

Have any of you experienced this problem? Is this a cartridge alignment issue, VTA, VTF, etc.? What have you guys done to resolve this?

After I aligned my cartridge with the MintLP Best Tractor, inner groove distortion vanished. Dynavector XX2 on a KAB Technics SL1200 MK II.

You might consider this tool.
Wow that thing is $100. Do I really have to spend that much to get my setup perfected? How can the provided alignment chart not be accurate enough?
Jwglista, your questions are valid. They have been asked and answered in several threads. If you're interested to learn more about the MintLP, I recommend doing a thread search.

I can only say that in my set-up, it worked as advertised and rid my analog playback of the problem you describe.
I appreciate the advice. I guess it's just never good news to hear that you have to spend even more to perfect your setup. Some of those companies really seem to really pull in the profits from us perfectionist audiophiles. I will do a search on the MintLP

do you know the pivot to spindle distance of your tonearm? search for conrad hoffman alignment template generator. it's a custom program that will print out a protractor for your specific geometry. the guy is a genius.
My TT did the same, I spent so much time and money on Alignment tools.. didn't help. It turned it was a problem with my cartridge and arm combo, try another cartridge if you can.

Good luck!
Ducatirider: No I do not have that stat, but it should be available somewhere? It's a Clearaudio Emotion with Satisfy tonearm. I will have to search for that info.
If the cartridge is aligned correctly, then it is correct. There are different systems but, so are there on record cutting machines...

If you have done this then the fault must lay else where, the complience of the cartridge must match with the arm. As the record nears the end, any discrepency will result in distortion, if you play a record with large transients you will hear it more as the cantilever struggles.
I really urge you to check this.
I would assume that a Clearaudio Virtuoso was made to match with a Clearaudio Satisfy tonearm. When I received the table, the tail end of the tonearm was low, but I raised the VTA to make it parallel. Maybe that's one of the issues. Although I did notice an improvement in sound when I adjusted the VTA.

I've printed several charts from the Conrad Hoffman alignment program, but I'm not even sure which one to use. There are standards for DIN, IEC, and "Typical". It will be interesting to see which of these alignment charts closely matches the chart that was provided by Clearaudio. Any suggestions on which one should be used?
Spend the money and buy a Mint LP.

Its' cost represents only a small fraction of your total analog investment.
I don't really see a need to spend $110 right off the bat when there are free alignment tools out there. The Conrad Hoffman tool seems very nice. I'm going to try that tonight, but I still don't know which standard for inner and outer groove radius should be used (DIN, EIC, etc.). A MintLP has to go by only one of those standards.

If I am still unsuccessful with these tools, then I may consider a MintLP. But until then....

I've used the Geodisc and the protractor that comes with the Hi-Fi News test record. Gets you close....

I have experienced some of the symptoms that you have described with my Marantz/Clearaudio TT.

I will be purchasing a Mint soon :)
I would start with 222mm as the pivot to spindle distance and Lofgren B since you have inner groove distortion and leave the rest as default. The arc is customized for your geometry. After this, I would work on VTA. You can fold a piece of fine gragh paper to rough horizontal as a starting point and then do the rest by ear. BTW where is your dealer in all this? Did you buy this online?
Jwglista, You say you want to "get your setup perfected". No printed out protractor is going to come close the precision of the Mint LP
I printed out several charts using 222mm as the setting. I was able to find that from Clearaudio's website. I will try using Lofgren B. Is there any particular reason for using this? Why would this resolve inner groove distortion?

As far as VTA, I have that spot on. I've used a ruler to measure the accuracy.

I purchased this setup from a member on Audiogon, so I don't have the option of going back to any dealers.
you will always get some arc distortion of some kind with a pivoted arm. what you are doing is trying to minimize it as much as possible. Once you print it out you will see that the Lofgren B grid is innermost. From your description, I think that is where your alignment is off. since you bought secondhand, there is the possibility that your unit is defective. use lots of light and magnifying glasses. there is a certain satisfaction in empowerment learning this on your own.
Why would the alignment arc be different on Lofgren B as opposed to Lofgren A?