New cartridge question

I have a TNT JR / SME 309 arm , BAT vkp-5 phono stage musicmetre silver tonearm cable. I am thinking about a
Lyra Helikon I know its .5mv , would the vkp-5 have enough
gain I beleive its 50 to 56 or would I have to use a step up transformer to make it work properly? Any other suggestions Please help me . Thanks David
Hi David,

With up to 56 dB of gain, the vk-p5 should work fine unless you have very inefficient speakers and low input sensitivity in your power amp. More than likely it will be sufficient.
I also have the Helikon and I am driving it with the ARC PH3SE rated at .54 dB. It drives it very comfortably!
You'll likely be okay with that, but you'll have to turn up the volume knob higher than you are used to doing. If you have any noise at all in your tubes, this will raise the noise floor.

Also consider the Shelter 501, if you want to get similar performance and save about half your cash. The 501 is right in the class with the Helikon, at $800 new.
Ahhrr Twl, Shelter 501 vs. Helikon??
I would agree to compare with Lydian beta but with Helikon would pick up Shelter 901 to compare
Marakanetz, you may be surprised. There is more than one person that holds the opinion that the 501 is in the league with the Helikon, and that the 901 clearly surpasses it.
In reality you should trace from cartridge output down to your speakers and even room.
Average power amplifier has 1V+- sencitivity for the full rated power. Having .5mV and driving it with 56dB will give you on output approximately 300mV. That is the minimal sencitivity should take place in your preamplifier. To have a minimal sacrifice to the dynamics you need to throw into the input of your power amplifier enough input to drive your speakers that are also rated db/W/m...