Is there high output MC that can compete/beat ...


my Grado Reference Sonata? I'm looking to stay in the same $ ballpark, $250-300 used, and wondering if high output MC can improve on the Sonata's sound? Perhaps keep the warmth and rhythm while adding a bit more detail? It's mounted on a Thorens TD-320, with Cayin TA-30 amp, and GMA Callistos. Thanks all.
winegasman
There's a Dynavector 10X5 on Audiogon now for $250. Take the cover off and it's a real contender. Not affiliated with seller, etc., etc. Good luck, Dave
Don't know about taking off the cover, but I really enjoy my Dyna 10X5.
Detailed, warm, and extended on both ends of spectrum.
Another vote for the Dynavector 10x5. Amazing cartridge at the price.
Well, that's pretty unanimous! Now, the important question, which I forgot to include in my original post: is the Dynavector compatible with my Gram Amp 2Se phono preamp, which needs an input of "2 to 9 mV rms"? Thanks, Rich
The output voltage of the 10X5 is 2.5 mV, so you should be fine. Dave
Thanks dave. Does the 2.5 mV, which is at the low end of the Gram Amp 2's stated needs, mean tha I'm going to have to crank the volume more to get the same level of sound as with the Sonata (which is about 4 mV, if I remember correctly)? Thanks, Rich
"Does the 2.5 mV, which is at the low end of the Gram Amp 2's stated needs, mean tha I'm going to have to crank the volume more to get the same level of sound as with the Sonata (which is about 4 mV, if I remember correctly)? Thanks, Rich"

I had this question with my setup as I use the phono stage in my Musical Fidelity A 300 integrated amp. The MM stage which is recommended for a high output MC cartridge has 37 db gain.
The Dynavector 10X5 needs a suggested gain level of 43 or 44db.
I do turn up the volume pot on my MF A300 a bit more than with a CD player. Most people have told me that this is not an issue. I do not notice any S/N ratio issues.
If your phono preamp gain is around 40db you should be fine. There is also issue of your preamp that it goes into.

Others may have more informed opinions here.
All I can tell you is that the 10X5 plays louder at the same volume level on my preamp than the Shure V15VxMR and ADC XLM Mk. II that I use on another turntable. Yet these other carts supposedly have a higher output than the Dyna. You'll have plenty of gain, IMHO.
i'm using a dynavector 20x h with a gram amp 2se, and it seems to sound jsut fine...
Sonata is a very good cartridge, 10x5 is absolutely not going to beat it. You need to do better that that. If talking Dynavector you need to get into at least 20X, but I personally don't like its hight output version, low output sounds much sweeter.
I am not sure moving into high output MC makes sense for you at this point. Low output is where you get real differense.
Don't forget, you have a very decent cartridge now.
Benz now has a Ebony LP it claims to be the best high output moving coil in the world. better be for 2 grand.
For what it's worth, I just sold my Dynavector 10x5 on Audiogon a few weeks ago. It came with my VPI when I got it last year. Everything said above is true (detailed, warm, great extension in highs and bass). But I still prefer the sound of the high-end Grado's myself. Recently I've been trying the MusicMaker-III, which is basically a hot-rodded Grado. I like it a lot, much more than I liked the Dynavector. To me, it sounds more natural. I don't spend as much time noticing the sound ("wow, those high's are incredible") but rather I find the music itself more compelling. I have no idea what makes it do that, but I LIKE it!

Just my $.02 YMMV

doug