Replacing stylus on a AT 150XML

According to the manufacturer, the stylus on the Audio Technica 150MXL is replaceable.

However, when I pulled mine off (stupid I know, wanted to clean it) I can not get it back on the body. Well I can, but the alignment is fubar and the cartridge collapses under any load. The enclosed instructions on stylus removal/replacement are useless.

So how can I get my cart back together again? Do I have to send it back to AT, or can a re-tipper do this? The stylus is fine and not worn.

Very sorry to hear this.  It sounds like the suspension collapsed. 

You are correct, the AT-150MLX has user replaceable styli so you did nothing wrong by taking it off.  It is designed this way.  Also MM cartridges cannot be retipped, they can only be replaced.  So, if still under warranty, I would send it to AT for repair or a new stylus.  This should not have happened. 

Check to see if you have the stylus seated properly.  When you look from the side does the back edge line up with the back of the cart?

When you look from the front or back, is there a space between the plastic and metal body, or is it snug?

It sounds like a broken suspension, but you might want to make sure. If you need a replacement, Amazon or Lp Gear have the best price.


There are (2) little poles on the stylus assembly.  You need to make sure that those are aligned with the slots in the cartridge and seat properly.  Also make sure the rubber dampers are not "tucked" up underneath the poles.
What Fleib said. It’s a bit tricky to seat the stylus because (I suppose) they’re trying to achieve as much structural rigidity with a snap-in joint as possible. A couple of years ago I got a replacement stylus for my 5-yr-old AT150MLX. It was a bit difficult to remove the old stylus and it took me a few tries to get the new stylyus to align and snap in properly. It seems to take a combination of a subtle front-to-rear sliding motion combined with an upward snap. Make sure the stylus assembly’s edges are completely nested and aligned completely flush with the cartridge housing before you try to play it.
I got it back together to where the stylus no longer collapses under the tracking weight. But the sound is distorted and if I play those tracking test records I get quite a bit of distortion in one channel.

Looks like the components in the suspension in the cart body are messed up.

I ended up switching to an AT-OC9ML/II which sounds a lot better in any case. Maybe I will send the 150 back to AT to see if they can repair it.