Possible to Compare the DV XV-1 & Grado Statement?

Been using the DV 20XL for several years and and am getting the itch to move on... I have a Hovland HP-100 preamp with phono. The Hovland folks seem to like the Grado Statement quite a bit. Local advice leans very heavily towards the Dynavector XV-1. How can I possibly compare these two? The Statement is way less money... Anyone have experience with these two cartridges? Thoughts on this compare? Using a VPI Aries 3 TT with a DV507-MKII arm.
The XV-1s is a world class phono cartridge.

That's the difference between them.

Dealer disclaimer
You won't find many people with actual first-hand experience with The Statement. From what I've read in forums, most people seem to try to "guestimate" it's performance from hearing Grado's other offerings - which is worthless. There is a big difference (besides cost), in every regard, between it and Grado's other carts.

I own it, but honestly cannot afford anything more expensive to compare it to.
I would concur with comment #1.
I would never bag on a grado, they are great for what they are, especially in the inexpensive aisle. The few I've heard with more money involved I wouldn't care to own.
However, you're comparing apples and oranges...
If you can't swing for the top dyna, try the xx-2.
It would only make sense since you have the arm.
Good luck...
also, been hearing good things about the cartridgeman's new goodies, and not a bad price.
Stickman, The Dynavector is one of the great cartridges in the here and now.

If your seriously considering the XV1 this money your about to spend would be better spent I think towards another table instead, table only.
Either move up the VPI line or look else where.
You have a good preamp, phono and arm.

Four grand is a great start and in the long run, definitely a good move.
Hello Stickman451,

I own the Grado Statement Master 0.5mv and I can say it's a great cartridge for its price
If you like brass instruments and vocals .. there are few cartridge that can sound so "magical" like this Grado Statement serie.
By the way I think it is not comparable to the Dyna XV 1s .. cos it's like to compare a very good Mercedes Benz to a Ferrari .. the first car is good for all day use while the second can do things the first only can dream
Did you get the point?


As I pointed out, most people will try to extrapolate "The Statement's" performance from Grado's lessor offerings, but almost none have ever heard the actual cart you are asking about. And even less have directly compared the two.
Dear Stkman451: I agree with what people posted on the great XV-1.

I never heard the Statement but I own the Grado Amber The Tribute ( over 1.6K ) and it is an exeptional performer if the Statement is on this " league " ( that I understand it is ) then the choice between those cartridges ( Grado/Dyna ) is a hard call to anyone, Btw, like almost always it is system dependent specially on the phono stage.

I can live for ever with each one. Sorry not to be more specific.

Regards and enjoy the music.
Hi Stkman451,
I own the xv-1s and Grado(Amber)Tribute and would have to agree with Raul.
Both cartridges are excellent performers.
If anything the dyna probably has a slightly more forward top end.

Regards Rob
In all honesty, I haven't the faintest idea how the The Statement compares against top-flight carts, so why don't I help clear up this whole issue!

I will send my Grado "The Statement" to an Audiogon member with the XV-1 for a direct comparison in their system.

Audiofeil, Raul, Rwjp, and Stiltskin all have top notch systems. Whose up for the task?
Dear Bob: If you can try to run the Amber loaded at 100Kohms, this makes a difference for the better.

Btw, nice to see amother person with this great Grado cartridge, it seems to me that only a few people know about.

Regards and enjoy the music.
Dear Darkmoebius: I think that your gracious offer is something to appreciate from every one and I'm sure that every one here can/could make a good " job " about but at the same time IMHO that offer can/could a great opportunty for Stickman451 has a first hand " experience " on it.

Thank you for take me in count.

Regards and enjoy the music.
Thanks for the offer Victor but I have 14 cartridges in house and 3 more enroute; 2 Lyras and a My Sonics Lab.

I defer to one of the other members.
Audiofeil - you have a sickness (17 cartridges???). I think with some counselling you might be able to pare that down to 2-3 :-)

Unless, of course, those are all "business" expenses
I wish I did buy that extra arm tube for my Phantom,for sure I would taken you up on your offer.

My currant set up with a Mint arc protractor is I believe my best attempt yet.
Too much efford, for me anyway, went into it, to undo it.

Thank you for your generous offer.
Too bad, because I have always wondered how The Statement stacks up against other carts in it's price range.

Like you, Stiltskin, I'm not that experienced at setup and "dialing in" a cart takes a lot of effort and time. That's why i was hoping for one of the "vinyl veterans" would do the comparison
Ahhh but that's the beauty of the Phantom arm and Mint protractor, you can dial it in to the nth degree.
With each time I worked with it, I just got better at it.

All you need is patience, a well lit area to work in, mag light and a "good optical aid".....
Dear Stickman451: Other alternative that IMHO can help you is the Nagaoka MP-50, very good performer.

Regards and enjoy the music.
I have a Nagaoka MP-50 set up with a VPI Aries 3. I really enjoy this cartridge. I went from a Grado Sonata. I really liked the Sonata and will receive my Statement 1 this coming week.
I just bought Grado's The Statement. It is mounted on a Linn table. I really like the sound on Magnepan 3.6s and on B&W 801s(older ones). I have not tried the other cartridge and I am going to spend more on one.
Hi Darkmoebius,

I have the Phantom II with the DV1s already loaded and a spare titanium arm wand if you'd like me to do the comparison?

Are you in Australia like I am as I don't want to pay for shipping abroard?

Hi Halcro. Unfortunately, I'm in the good old USA. Los Angeles, California to be exact.

I cannot understand why there as only been one review of this cart in the last 5 years. Luckily, Robert Levi perfectly sums up it's qualities and compares it to the Dynavector XV-1s, ZYX Airy 3, and Koetsu Rosewood Signature in Positive Feedback Issue 44:
With ground breaking lifelike imaging, state of the art precision and grainlessness, and flawless tracking at only 1.6 grams, the truly outstanding and unique Statement1 is a Grado cartridge like no other that has come before...

This isn't just reconstituted master tape sound like some makes claim. The Statement 1 produces a dynamic energy within the imaging that creates musical space in both the front and back of the instrumental image on quality LPs. It starts out as a vividness that's really quite nice as the cartridge breaks in. Then the magic happens at about 50 hours. Any sense of grain vanishes and you hear this expansion of the sound field accompanied by extraordinary definition. You are drawn into the music with an emotional connection rarely heard in any other medium other than really great LP.

I have heard bits and pieces of this kind of enthralling organic imaging with my gray Decca Select cartridge in 1978 and my current Koetsu Rosewood Signature. The Dynavector XV-1S has the purity and some of the energy of the Statement 1, but none of these have quite the excitement and holographic imaging I'm hearing from the Grado. One of my audiophile brethren commented that it was like listening in 3-D!...

The Highs

The airy ambient top end of the Statement 1 is thrilling and so very open. The best part is that the musical ambience makes sense. There is no stray reverberant sound that does not belong to an instrument. LP after LP confirmed that what I thought was over dub sweetening was really hall or instrumental ambience unaccounted for by another cartridge. The Statement reunified and reorganized the sound field into an organic whole. Vocals and acoustic instruments made more sense and sounded more like they were in the room. I consider this a break-through in the performance of LP cartridges. Much of these qualities are present in the Koetsu and Dynavector, but not to the extent of the Grado. Amazing!

The Mids

This is where the music lives and breathes. Just wait until you hear the Statement 1 play your Sheffield LP masterpieces. Direct to disk is a case of the best keeps getting better. Instruments, horns of all kinds, project into the room. The sense of depth is as good as it gets with the clarity of the images at the back wall as clear as those at the front of the stage. Your speakers no longer create any boundary for the sound to cross. Yes, I checked the phasing of the cartridge. The affect is most exciting and involving. Layers of violins are enhanced and right to left spread is full and wide in dynamic energy. The Statement1 is fuller and fleshier than any other cartridge I have heard with snap as fast as my lightening quick [but lean] ZYX Airy 3. Even my wonderful Koetsu Rosewood Signature is somewhat less organic than the new Grado. No Grado has ever sounded like this before. Must be the gold wire. The Statement1 is also the best tracking Grado ever!

The Bass

This has always been a strong suit of the Grado, but the Statement 1 takes the bass response to a new place. The solidity and textural nuance of the bass is equal to any moving coil. It's certainly ground-breaking for a Grado and it enhances the enjoyment of the state of the art mids and highs. Kick drum and bass fiddle are separated and nuanced. This is killer bass for phono and very organic, too. The projection of the bass into the room is just stunning and ambience retrieval in the bottom octaves is most exciting. The bass fully matches and compliments the fabulous mids. There is no disconnect or lumpiness at any frequency and my reference system is fairly flat from 22Hz to 45kHz.

The believable sonic images and the superb pacing of the Statement 1 set this cartridge apart from the competition. Its $3000 price is steep, but much, much lower than its European and Japanese competition since it's made in America. I am overwhelmed by the Decca-like dynamics, the Dynavector-like delicacy and purity, the ZYX-like speed, snap, and tracking ability, and the Koetsu-like textural layering. It all adds up to something new and thrilling for phono playback...
He really nails my impressions of The Statement. I used the Zyx R-100 FS(Silver) in my system on my Scheu Premier turntable w/ 80mm platter using Scheu's top of the line Tacco tonearm for a short time. The Zyx was refined, delicate, and fast, but lacked the full body and impact of the Grado(which has those other traits, too) in that setup.

Of course, this is all a matter of personal taste. Some prefer Rieslings or Pinots over Cabs, Flemish masters over Caravaggio, Audry Hepburn over Sofia Loren. I am definitely of the latter camp.
Just to throw another stick into the water, but I moved from a Grado Platinum to a DV 20X-H to a DV XX-1 and now have a Transfiguration Temper. There's more similarities than differences between the Dynavectors and Transfiguration. If you like the DV sound then you could check out these as well. the Grado's are going to sound very different overall.