I use brass/Soundsmith, when I am trying to add weight/mass to a cart/arm combination. Can't really say that I notice a difference sound wise between it, aluminum, plastic or stainless steel which are the other choices provided with the Soundsmith screw sets. Enjoy the music
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There are much better (looking) screws to add weight than those from soundsmith.
Transcendent Frequencies offering them on ebay in different length/weight for any tonearm/cartridge.
Remember, your cartridge mounting screws must be nonmagnetic!
P.S. I am not crazy to expect any difference in sound using different screws, they need only to add weight if the headshell is not detachable.
I just bought a set of screws off ebay from the UK.I notice quite a difference in midrange and bass but I had to put the counter weight back further on the tone arm to compensate for the extra weight so I really don't know if it was the screws.Anyway whatever the case my rig sounds better for less than 20 bucks.
Maybe you have to check your arm effective mass and cartridge compliance first (you could check with HiFi test record).
Adding mass is not always necessary (or act like improvement), but sometimes you just need higher mass for low compliance cartridges if the arm is too light.
I think you’re dealing with effective mass, or you just screwed your cartridge better when you changed the screws
I don’t believe in that esoteric BS and snake oil that material of the screws can improve the sound, they are just fixing your cartridge to the headshell.
The benefit of the screws i posted above is that mounting process getting much easier, they are bigger and can be tightened by fingers first (then with a tool), and they add mass a bit to change tonearm's effective mass a bit (when needed).
When you are trying to lose mass screws are more critical. The difference between aluminum and stainless steel or brass screw is significant. In trying to add mass the difference between stainless steel and brass screw does not amount to much. You have to do something more substantial like head shell weights.
It is also possible that the brass screws are making the sound noticeably better. Followed a Forum link about 12 years ago that many said the use of brass screws to fasten the drivers of your speakers made the sound better in most ways. Tried it with the music playing through my speakers at the same time. The bass got tighter, and the sound at all frequencies was cleaner and, at the same time, more beautiful sounding with no downsides with each screw changed. By the time I had done all 16 screws, I was smiling at the thought of improving the sound quite a bit for about $15. At the time, I did just the woofers. And yes, the drywall screws that the speakers came with were already tightened snugly just prior. I checked that prior to installing the brass ones. That was on a pair of Vortex Screens made by Albert Von Schweikert made earlier in his career. The fact that they are brass could be the difference vs. some other metal. Of course, this is comparing use in speakers to use in a headshell. I may have to try that on my Pete Riggle Woody arm.
Acoustic Sounds recommend titanium screws, and you can buy a set that includes different lengths of screws, on eBay for a nominal sum. Do I necessarily believe that titanium (or brass) screws can turn a cartridge/headshell sow's ear into a silk purse? No. As someone else said, the only important thing is to avoid screws that are attracted to a magnet.
Lewm, If you do not have a detachable head shell using Ti screws are asking for it. Titanium galls like crazy. You might get away with it if you use anti seize but I would stick with stainless or aluminum hardware (only using like nuts!) Some poor bloke is going to use ti screws on his SME V and permanently mount his cartridge. I wonder if Acoustic Sounds is going to pay for the mistake?
I bought the Soundsmith EZ mount screws because I wanted that easy method of securing my cart, I really hate the bolt and nut system, you need 6 hands to attach and then when setting up is a PITA. The Lyra helps since its threaded, love it for setup!!
I did find that the brass, alum and steel had a different sound character....but this was because of the position of the counter weight. I found the stainless got my counter weight as close to the pivot point as possible, the brass ones pushed the c/weight way back.