Problem with turntable/cartridge?

Hello all,

I have noticed that my CD player provides a much greater sense of the attack of notes, especially piano notes, than does my turntable. I use a Jeff Rowland Concerto integrated amp, a Rega P25 with a Benz Micro cartridge and PS Audio phono section. Is there something inherently incompatible about my analog components? I'd appreciate any input, help, comments, suggestions, etc.

By the way, my CD player is the fabulous, but little known, Opus 21 by REsolution Audio.

Thanks in advance.

Your benz is not the best cartridge, but you should still be getting better results than you describe. unfortunately, the standard Rega 300 arm on your P25 does not allow for raising or lowering the arm height. I have a feeling that your cartridge does not have the proper VTA an needs to be raised at the rear to get better attack and detail. If too low at the rear, the sound can get muddy. Most other arms allow for raising the tonearm, but not the rega. There are aftermarket solutions from Riggle and others. since you are not using a rega cartridge, I suspect that is your problem.
The Rega P25 comes stock with an RB600 not the RB300 as Manitunc suggests. In either case the RB600 still does not come with adjustible VTL. I don't know the cartridge height of the Benz cartridge you mentioned, but unless there is a gross difference (Rega's cartridges are 14mm) I can't imagine that the VTA is the sole problem. My best guess is that something in the phono stage set-up is wrong. Do you know if your cartridge is a high, medium or low output design?
There are many upgrades to the P25, but I found on MY Rega, that when I got it off of those rubber feet, it sounded very much better. Take 3 Cardas wood blocks and put them under the wooden surround of your turntable and hear the difference it makes. To adjust the height... someone makes a threaded sleeve that can go around the collar of the arm... The arm rests and is affixed to this sleeve and then you tighten the large nut that holds the arm in place. The sleeve can be screwed in or out to raise or lower the arm. ..a pain to do, but you don't have to do it often. Place the whole turntable on large drinking glasses (or similar) so that you can easily access under the turntable. I forgot where I got threaded collar, but you can reasearch it. Benz's sound best with the arm horizontal or very (very) slightly rear end high. ..other considerations for upgrading the arm are a dropped counterweight, and rewiring...all which make a difference.
Thanks for these guys. My Benz is the Micro H2, a high output cartridge. I've tried all the different loads available on my PS Audio phono section, and I have the best one now, but still lack real punch on the attack. Should I try it on the MM side?

Possibly a speed issue. When piano doesn't sound right; that's a clue that speed or speed control of the platter is off a bit. You can search the threads on speed control. A lot of discussion exists on this topic. If you have a test record with a 3150Hz test tone and an iPhone, then you can download a great app that will analyze the test tone and tell you the exact platter speed of your tt as well as variation of the speed over time. Other, more expensive but good devices out there to analyze platter speed. As I got more involved in platter speed, I learned that my small strobodisc and fluorescent light was inadequate. A full size strobodisc would be a good start. That will provide more precision.
Your Benz Micro H2 has 2.5mv output and is designed to run into a MM input. Loading should be 47k.
The other thing to check is the VTA, from memory my friends Benz Glider on a Rega required either a 1.5mm or 2mm spacer under the arm pillar to get the VTA correct.
To add VTA on the fly for Rega tonearms, and others, see Pete Riggle's site,