Micro Seiki MA-505 variants - any oracles around?


I wonder if somebody out there possesses encyclopaedic knowledge about the Micro Seiki MA-505 variants and can tell me:

1. if the MA-505X is similar to a Mk I, Mk II or Mk III?

and

2. if the MA-505X does indeed have silver wiring and if that's the only difference between it and the regular models?

Fingers crossed and thanks in advance!
agrippa
There is a lot of confusion over the differences between various MA-505 models.  I can only provide you with what is my understanding and others may correct me if I am mistaken.

MA-505 Mk I - the original MA-505 dynamically balanced tonearm.  A 9" "S" arm w/ copper wiring.  Still very good by today's standards

Mk II - The MkII is am improved version of the MkI

MA-505 Mk III - 9" straight tonearm w/ copper wiring.  It was designed to mate with very low compliance cartridges which were all the rage in the 1980s

MA-505 L - a 12" version of the Mk II tonearm.  I have never seen one that was based on the Mk I but maybe someone else has.

MA-505 S is a 9" MkII arm, supposedly wired with silver wire.  Note: Maybe - I once owned an "S" arm and when I rebuilt it I found that the internal wire was silver-coated copper.  Maybe mine was an anomoly

MA-505 LS is a 12" arm version of the MA-505 S

MA-505 X - a 9" MkII arm featuring a heavier arm base

MA-505 XII - improved version of the MA-505 X.  Includes heavier arm mounting bracket and oil dump mechanism

MA-505 LX - 12" version of MA-505 X

MA-505 XS - 9" MA-505 X tonearm w/ silver wiring

MA-505 LX II - an improved version of the 12" MA-505 LX.  Same improvements as the MA-505 XII

Wow! Impressive knowledge of that subject.  I once owned what was at least a Mk II version and foolishly sold it without ever having used it. I would only add that for the Japanese, "S" is not always an indication of silver wire.  For example, the Fidelity Research tonearms that bear an S suffix are not necessarily silver-wired, unless there is a separate label so indicating.
Wonderful stuff br3098, thank you so much for taking the time to write it all down!
I recently picked up an MA-505X, seemingly in mint condition (time will tell I guess) at a relatively reasonable price, but wasn't entirely sure exactly what I was buying due to the plethora of models in existence and an almost complete lack of dependable information.
I was under the impression that the 505X had silver wiring, but whether or no makes no particular difference.  I've never owned one but enjoy the sound of it a lot in a friend's system, so I decided it was time to check it out for myself.
Thank you once again, I'm most grateful.
Guys,

I forgot to add that (apparently) the XII and LXII tonearms also featured silver wiring.  Again, color me skeptical if you own one you tell me.

But all in all the MA-505 line are very good tonearms; if not equal to those in the highest class.  I find them to be unequaled on classic Japanese DD and belt drive decks, which is what they were designed for.

Indeed, I'm sceptical too.  Fortunately I don't particularly care and in any case I'm unlikely to ever find out unless the arm turns out to be defective and needs to be disassembled.

Mine will by necessity be mounted on a Spacedeck, but presumably it will perform well there too.
How do you like the performance of the arm? What Cartridge are you using?
@br3098

MA-505 Mk III - 9" straight tonearm w/ copper wiring. It was designed to mate with very low compliance cartridges which were all the rage in the 1980s

CORRECTION: It’s the other way around. This is the arm with 7g effective mass and tracking force from 0.25 - 3g. I believe it was designed for HIGH compliance cartridges in the 80s (not low compliance), but tonearm can support a cartridge even with 4-16g selfweight.

P.S. Another interesting arm made by Micro Seiki for Luxman is TA-1 for high compliance cartridges. Static balance system. Cartridge weight range 2 - 16g, tracking force range 0 - 3g, effective length 240mm. Antiskating adjustment, cuering system, arm-base stabilizer. Made in the 70’s by Micro-Seiki for Luxman Corporation (Osaka, Japan).
chakster, you are correct of course.  My bad.  I meant to say that the MkIII tonearm was designed for HIGH-compliance cartridges.

Thanks for the catch.

BTW the arm on Pioneer Exclussive P3 and related top of the line Pioneer turntables was also designed by Micro Seiki and has some similarity with Micro Seiki MAX-282  
Just to add to the variants of the MA-505 is the 
OEM arm found on Micro Seiki DD-40 turntable, still identified
as an MA-505 although different from the arms sold
on their own. 


Ok, so have any of you used the X version with a Koetsu Cartridge and if so what were your thoughts?
thx
Just about to try my ma505ls with a Koetsu Black Goldline.
In theory it should be ok but will let you know when the Koetsu arrives.
@uberwaltzYou may have posted enough times about this but what turntable are you running the ma 505 last with? I use a MS BL91L (modified a bit) for mine. Please let me know how the Koetsu sounds.
Adrian

Adrian
Not sure as I have posted many times about the SQ of my current combo
So I have the ma505ls which is the long version, it was rebuilt with cryo silver internal wire and uses original MS headshell.
It is mounted on my Garrard 401 idler drive which sits in a huge custom plinth made of birch and curly maple, you can see it in my system pictures if interested. The 401 was also totally rebuilt with new bearings, switches idler wheels etc. Plinth weighs about 40lb on its own and I do have two spare blank armboards if I get the urge to try any different arms on it.

I have a number of carts but since fitting and carefully setting up the Koetsu it has not been off the table. This is one of those carts that rewards very small changes in sra done by ear in my case after all the basics were set with tools ( protractor, fozgometer etc).
As you know the VTA is real easy to change on the fly and it offers a huge range to accommodate just about any arm/cart combo on the planet.
I do also have the extra weights for really difficult carts in the future.

Now the sound.....
Extremely well detailed especially in the highs but not shrill or edgy or metallic sounding, it does not set ones ear on edge as some piercing highs can, this is just addictive and detailed. Low end bass reproduction is also admirable, in fact I had to turn down the subs slightly.
Maybe, just maybe it loses a tiny bit in the mids compared to say my Scheu Analog SL cart but its so slight compared to the gains elsewhere and the overall sweet nature and balance overall.
Acoustic work and female vocals are just to die for.
I can see it staying on until it is worn out... lol.

Hope that helps!
Hello, I found this post very useful. I believe I have a MA 505 LX II. I would like to get another base for it as the one i have is a bit hacked. Would anyone know if the base from a MAX 237 be the same as on the 505? They look the same except in their perspective manuals the 505 calls for a 38mm mounting hole and the 237 a 41mm hole.
Thanks in advance for any info on this.Ken
The Micro Seiki  505LS is silver wired, the 505LX is copper wired.

I'm pretty sure all the Micro arms that are silver wired all have a big "S" logo on the back end of the armtube.
Now that this thread has been revived, I wonder whether anyone has knowledge of the origin of the L07J tonearm that was supplied with the Kenwood L07D turntable. The L07J has a look to it that has always reminded me of the micro seiki MAX tonearms. Since MS is generally credited with designing just about every Japanese tonearm, except maybe SAEC, why not?
@lewm 
If I were a betting man I'd lay my money down.

A few years back I delved deep into the whole Japanese 
network of who built what to support the electronic market.

Quite an eye opener if your not familiar.

totem, Got some references?  Thx.