This out to do the trick for now:
Tony, I don't know much about the Tara either except that they have a good rep and it's within your budget.
You often see van den Huls for sale because they come with SME arms -- stay away.
There are two more good cables at $300+ (just search "phono cable") here on the Gon: a Wireworld Eclipse that has some good comments, and also a Cardas Golden Cross (OK but not as good as their Golden Reference).
But for <$200, you can't be too picky ;--)
Steelhead, I've got to say the Zu Xaus seems to be mentioned here and on AA in a very positive manner. I just missed one of the eBay listings for a Xaus. I'm a little hesitatnt because it is an alloy cable, which traditionally is looked at in a critcal fashion. Do you have experience with the Xaus? Can you tell me your impressions and in what kind of system you've heard it used?
I bought one to use in my Thorens TD 126MKII using a classic Sumiko Premier MMT arm and Ortofon x5 moving coil that used stock circa late 70's standard cable. Also used an X5 in a JVC QLY5F direct drive table.
After listening I decided to use it on my SOTA Sapphire, Fidelity Research FR64fx/B60 VTA Base, FR MK13F, and MC 201 low output cartridges (both rebuilt by Mr. Van Den Hul).
I feel that it is an excellent overall cable. There is a sense of rightness with it in the system. The criteria I judge by are "shimmer" and overtones on cymbals and blat and resin on Saxes and violin. The Xaus allows me to hear or imagine that I am hearing or in the presence of the instruments when they are on a recording. The "electric" "crackling" live type sense comes flowing through on albums like the new Classic Hendrix box set, Dylan's and Doors Live Albums and makes listening so very enjoyable. My system's bass is fairly weak, but the Xaus allows deep drum and stand up bass on recordings like Patricia Barber Companion to come through with a nice sense of fullness and weight. You can easily discern differences in quality of recordings including subtle stuff like a Beatles White Album German pressing contrasted with a Parlaphone and that sort of audio nut fun stuff.
I am not a cable expert and I usually make my decisions on a "what I like" type of basis. Hell, I was a hold out for quite a while and thought basic monster was cool enough but experimenting around I changed. I do believe in a difference in cables, using the Alaskan Amber Beer test. That is, believing that cables are the most over hyped things and minor time wasting change type of issue, then after six or seven ambers, changing cables, and then not believing how different it can change a system. When I can duplicate results sober, well that is proof of the hypothesis. For speakers and interconnects I have Zu, Goertz Alpha Core both copper and silver, MIT, Audioquest, Monster early and late. I like Goertz the best in my system of the above-mentioned brands, even preferring it for my speaker cables over the Zu, which I bought for the "synergy" thing.
So basically I don't think you can go wrong with the Xaus for the coin. I am in the process of having a SOTA Cosmos/ w Vacuum upgraded at the factory to current version and spec. When I have that puppy fixed up, the Fidelity Research and Xaus cable will remain in the system. That's about the best recommendation I can make. I listen to vinyl roughly 75-85% of the time.
Be cautioned I have not heard Cardas, Nordost, or other very reputable and perhaps killer phono cables. I also cannot give you a full accounting of low or deep bass, but for under two hundred, I can't imagine much of anything slaying the Xaus without stepping up to spending serious sheckles.
Thorens TD 126 MK II
Revox A77 and Teac X2000 r to r
Sony SCD 777ES
Conrad Johnson Premier 11a (on panels)
Hafler DH 500 (on bass drivers) (bi amp system)
Martin Logan ReQuest speakers.
OH, HAVE FUN!!!!!!!
I do not see that you have listed your arm and what it is wired with. Just food for thought but I have settled on VPI with their Discovery wiring instead of the Vahalla wired arm and like their phono cables which are wired with Discovery wiring also after trying a boat load of more expensive phono cables with my set up.