OK, I have read with interest the phono stage threads, but what I need is just a phono stepup transformer. Marakanetz
gave me the skinny on the amount of gain I need, which turns out to be somewhere in the area of 30db. As background, I am in one of those old age phases where I am trying to simplify everything. If I actually go thru with it, I will end up selling most of my other gear and ending up with a Fisher 400 receiver (modified to use EL-34s in pp triode mode), my LP12 with Ekos/Dynavector 17D2 (.23mV output) and some kind of decent CD recorder. The Fisher only accepts a minimum of 4.5mV, so I either need to get a stepup transformer of a high output cartridge. The Dynavector is great. It has lots of pace, rhythm and timing and great detail - it gets to heart of the music. I haven't found any reviews of HO cartridges that mention having a lot of swing. Most just talk about how smooth and airy they are - but, to me, that sounds like fat and slow. So, I am thinking that a stepup will have to be the answer. Since this system would end up being on the modest side, I don't want to spend a ton of money, maybe a few hundred dollars. Do any of you guys have a recommendation for a stepup that can accomodate a .23mV output 100 ohm cartridge? Or maybe you know of a suitable cartridge (I don't think Grado or Shure fit the bill though).