Miyajima Zero hum?

Anyone get a hum when using this mono cartridge through a stereo preamp? Some years back there was a thread about hum with the Miyajima Premium mono (https://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/ground-loop-with-miyajima-premium-mono?highlight=miyajima%20m...). At the time, the distributor's recommended fix was to connect only one of the cartridge's channel outputs, and then use a mono switch on the preamp (if it had one) to get sound from both channels. Either that or get a y-connector. I thought these unattractive solutions.

Now, I'm thinking about picking up a Zero, but I'm wondering whether it's subject to the same hum issues. If so, it would be a deal-breaker for me, as I have no mono switch and don't want to use a y-connector or mono SUT.

Unfortunately I think you may be out of luck. I have the Zero and exactly the same hum problem. Engaging the mono switch on my preamp while connecting both channels clears up the problem completely. The other fixes suggested such as using a single channel and a y-adaptor do not work, I even went so far as to only connect one channel back at the pins as recommended by my tonearm maker but this had no effect

I wonder if you could not make up a simple cable which adds the two channels together and gives you the effect of a mono switch? If your tonearm uses a detachable interconnect you could make one up (or have one made) and get the effect of a mono switch at the front end? A simple test of this would be to make up one using a male y-connector plugged into a female y-connector to check it works before springing for an expensive cable? I see Mike Lavigne suggested the same in the prior thread and I am sure this will work and is likely the optimal solution if you use a premium cable

I will observe that the hum, at least in my setup, is annoying between tracks but is not something I notice too much when music is playing but it definitely seems better to not have it at all
Folkfreak, thanks so much for the detailed response. That is too bad. I think I'll have to pass on this otherwise excellent unit.
The prior thread suggested that the hum was preamp dependent so if you can get a miyajima on loan to try it out you could see if the hum arose in your setup. Hate for you to miss out on this cartridge. It smoked the Lyra that I was using before 
I match my Miyajima Zero with a SME V tonearm and Cary Audio phono amp, and it's dead quiet. I have had low hum problems, but either changed out the cable or phono amp. I have used a PS Audio phono amp with great success as well. 
I sold my Miyajima BE mono because of the hum. Switched to a more expensive Lyra Kleos mono and the hum has gone. The Lyra has a different coil configuration that sums the signal in the cart(I think !). 

I just matched my Miyajima Zero with a Graham 2.2 ceramic Tonearm and Soundsmith MCP-2 phono amp, and it's as quiet as a mouse. Absolutely black background. I always felt a solid state phono amp would work better with this cartridge. 

This is an interesting question, because the Miyajima Zero is one of the best mono cartridges out there, and, so far as I know, it was designed from the ground up to be a mono cartridge.  Thus, unlike many "mono" cartridges on the market, which are actually stereo cartridges where the two channels were internally strapped, the Zero is not capable of producing signal (i.e., noise) in response to vertical movement of the stylus tip.  It is of interest that Folkfreak cured the hum problem by using the "mono" mode switch on his preamplifier.  Has anyone else had this problem, and was it thus cured?  What is it about the various phono stages used by those who have commented that produces hum in some cases and no hum in other cases, presumably without engaging mono mode?  Thanks to anyone who can help fill in these knowledge gaps.

The problem is described in my  Thöress preamplifier instruction manual:

" However, if a single-coil low-output (dedicated mono) MC cartridge is to be used on these (stereophonic) phono inputs and it is intended for dual-speaker-mono listening, precautions must be taken to "double" the mono signal in such way as to avoid hum. Please see the relevant chapter below for more details on using such cartridges. Examples of current production single-coil low-output MC cartridges are the dedicated mono cartridges made in Japan by Miyajima Lab, all models of which employ monoflexible styluses.

 When both inputs of a stereophonic phono preamplifier are wired to a single-coil generator cartridge in attempt to create signal doubling to allow for dual-speaker mono reproduction it is impossible to avoid a conductive connection between "left ground" and "right ground" of the (non-symmetric) phono circuit and, as a result, unwanted ground loops are formed.

Single-coil (mono) cartridges will cause residual hum due to ground loops when they are wired to feed both inputs of a stereophonic preamplifier (with non-symmetric circuitry) in an attempt to double the mono signal at the phono input for dual-speaker-mono listening !

To overcome this problem the signal should be doubled at the point of output rather than attempting to accomplish this earlier in the signal path. The paralleled main output jacks can be used to conveniently achieve this aim in the following manner. Only the right channel of the phono section should be fed by the single-coil generator via a customized monophonic tonearm cable, whilst the corresponding left input should be short-circuited  directly at the jack with the help of a RCA plug internally soldered to suit this purpose. If a monophonic tonearm cable is not at hand, a conventional stereophonic tonearm cable can be used equally well (with both plugs inserted into the respective jacks), in which case shorting the inactive left input can be conveniently accomplished at the very end of the left channel lead of the tonearm cable by shorting the "left hot" and "left ground" pin of the headshell. If the tonearm is equipped with free leads, the desired conductive connection can be easily formed by taping the lead ends of the respective tonearm leads firmly together. After these adaptations required to create dedicated single-coil cartridge input, signal doubling can be obtained at the output by connecting both power amps to the right channel main output by using the respective paralleled pair of jacks. "

I have the Miyajima Mono ZERO and had hum issues but I was told to expect this since, I believe, the L/R channel utilize the same neg. pole internally. As far as I understand a "true" mono cartridge will do this when connected to a stereo preamp. I have both a mono switch on my preamp and phono preamp so I didn’t need to utilize the "Y" connector option though I had one just in case. From all my reading about people using a mono cartridge, it is very preamp and cart. dependent.  I had a Dlr. advise me to stay away from a Shelter mono for this reason alone, and he sold them.

The thing I found interesting was that while playing mono LP’s with a stereo cart., it always sounded better when the "mono" switch was used on my phono preamp vs. the preamp. But the opposite was true when using the ZERO. Overall, I am a bit underwhelmed by the ZERO vs. my LP-S on mono LP’s. While the ZERO shows some improvement it’s small, though I only have about 50hrs. on it so it may still need some added break-in to sound better. I think most of the differences I hear could be attributed to the sonic qualities of the ZERO vs. an LP-S more so than the purely mono vs. stereo cartridge differences. I find the ZERO to be a bit "brighter" sounding vs. my LP-S which wasn’t what I was expecting at all. Again, maybe this is due to more break-in needed. Time will tell.

gerardff - What VTF are you running the Zero at? I too found it a little thin until i upped the tracking weight to 3.5g which seemed way high to me at first but rounded out the sound greatly. I didn't find too much of a change with break in