@Daveyonthecost - have you considered upgrading your cables?
A company called KLE Innovations is in your neck of the woods (i.e. Brisbane, Australia)
Their products will provide excellent control, deep, well controlled bass, exceptional clarity and image. The should work well with your setup.
I have had the pleasure of auditioning most of their lineup and these two products I feel provide the best bang for the buck in their lineup are
- gZero20 Interconnects
- gZero6 Speaker cables
Do not be put off by the slimline look of their speaker cables - they provide an exceptionally deep and well controlled bass performance
I have not tried their power products but think they too should provide significant improvements, based on the improvements their other products provide
I see you are using XLR. I have compared the gZero3 IC’s to a Kimber Kable silver XLR interconnect and the gZero3 outperformed the XLR, so don’t be afraid to try them.
If you are into DIY solutions you could try the cables in this link
I have developed these cables over the last four years and believe the materials identified in the link provides the best bang for the buck.
Another Audiogon member @toddverrone has built all of these cables and seems extremely happy with them
They provide excellent sound quality with superb imaging, dynamics, clarity and control.
You will also find my reviews of the KLEI products there.
I have compared some of the KLEI products from some well known companies such as Kimber Kable, Cardas, Van den Hul, Chord, crystal cables, DH labs, Purist Audio, Tara Labs and Signal Cable and the KLEI products outperformed all of them.
Unfortunately - all of these cables identified above take around 400 hours to sound their very best, and at about 25 hours some cables start to sound a little odd until the 60 hour mark is reached. Then they start to perform extremely well at around 150 hours and continue to improve - so burn in can take some time
Regarding the effectiveness of cables I know there are two camps - personally I value my cables as much as my components (if not more) . I have found they make a huge difference in the performance of each connected component. Some components actually run cooler by around 6 degrees Celsius, all due to the cables
My system is towards the budget end of this hobby, but it performs to a much higher level thanks to the cables
Hope that helps
I have the JLTI phono stage and it is excellent if a bit laid back. It certainly does not sound solid state in the least. I swap between the JLTI and the built in tube stage in my VAC Renaissance preamp. Both have their own personalities and attributes. The JLTI has the deeper bass.
I have heard the Proceed electronics many years ago and my memory is of a distinct dry solid state sound. I think your best bet is a good tube preamp. VAC is highly recommended but may not be available in your part of the world.
What he means by less loading is to increase the value of the resistance that is terminating (loading) the cartridge.The increase in terminating value is referred to as "less" because the higher value pulls less current from the cartridge.
Also the quality of the loading resistor is something commonly overlooked. I always advise to use common resistors to dial in the value. Then, once you find a value you like, search out a foil resistor (Caddock mk132, Vishay Z-foil...) and use that.
BTW some DL-103 users like to terminate their carts with really high values, like 5k ohm.
I like the DL103r with variable active loading from 300 to 50 ohms.
Thanks Everone, for your input!!
I'm really confused!!
If I was to set the cartridge, at say 100ohms, would it be harsher, then say 200 ohms??. I thought the 100 ohms, would be more smoother?? The makers recommend of the Zu cartridge, is 200 ohms, but on some recordings, sounds very harsh!!
Can someone help??
@daveyonthecoast hey, the JLTi is an excellent phono stage, it can be upgraded by the nanufacturer now to mk5. I use my JLTi with Zu Audio Druid MK5 (actually upgraded mkIV) speakers. Zu speakers are amazing (imo).
The Denon 103 and SPU both share similar sound signature, the only problem is CONICAL TIP. If you ’re looking for extentions on both ends (low and high), and far more accuracy in sound, then Conical tip of your Denon 103 should be avoided! You can have far more articulated and much deeper bass (along with better hights) with more advanced stylus.
For example: The difference between my Ortofon SPU classic GM MKII (spherical) and Ortofon SPU Spirit (elliptical) was huge, but last year i discovered SPU Royal G MKII with REPLICANT 100 stylus profile and this is simply amazing SPU, the best i’ve ever heard, this is a compliment to the stylus profile. The Royal G MKII compete with my FR-7f on Lustre 801 tonearm.
So i think you’d better try a different cartridge on trial (if possible), you can also tweak your Denon with SoundsmithRuby and LineContact stylus. The stylus profile most likely will give you what you’re looking for without any change in the rest of your system! Remember that Conical/Spherical is the cheapest and simpliest oldschool stylus profile and this is why the DL103 (designed in the late 60s) is cheap cartridge.
My second advice is a SUT, no matter that JLTi can handle LOMC without SUT. Adding a SUT may give you what you’re looking for, more slam in the bass. I use Luxman AD8000 with 8020 Silver SUT and JLTi Phono with my FR-7f cartridge, also with SPU Royal G MKII. At least you can try an alternative to active JLTI phono with high gain (what you’re using now) by adding a passive device (a SUT) with JLTi low gain MM input.
As for the JLTi itself i would advice to upgrade the resistors (47k inside the stage and also whatever lower value inside your RCA plugs), but you can do that when you know which loading you like the most. The best sounding resistors are definitely Vishay Naked Foil from Texas Components (USA) and they are different from the cheaper JLTi stock resistors. Vishay Naked Foil is for audio aplications (they are square shape).