Review: Graham Engineering Graham 2.2 Tonearm

Category: Analog

I would like to post this not so much as a review, but as a User's Guide. It has taken me months to "dial it all in," and would like to maybe shave a few months of time off anyone else using this arm.

The arm itself is not difficult to use nor to mount, just follow instructions and be patient.

I found that manufacturer's silicon fluid to be fine; fill the chamber up about 2/3s of the way and give it a day to settle.

Your cartridge height will differ from mine, most likely, but I can only say from what I have, so please adjust as necessary.

The real beauty of the Graham arm is its ability to adjust the VTA literally on the fly. Record can be playing and you can find the sweet spot as you are listening if you are careful.

My method is quite simple. I weigh each and every record on a kitchen scale in grams. From this number I add 130 (for the Lyra Titan) and then begin AT THAT POINT on my Vertical Adjustments. Any other cartridge might have another number as its start point. You will have to figure this out for yourself and it does take time, but once you know that number you are close to extracting magic from every record you own.

The Graham arm is calibrated from 100 to a bit more than 400.
Each full rotation of the top knob moves the arm assembly up 20. Each number on the knob moves it 4. There are five numbers on each turn: 0,1,2,3,4. So if you had it set to 200, then at Zero it would be 200, then moving the dial to the number 1 would put you at 204, and so forth.

So after you have cleaned the record by your chosen methods, weigh the record and let's say it weighs 166g.

Adjust the tonearm height to 296 (166+130) and listen. This position would be at the 4 just below the 300 mark. Close your eyes, listen and very carefully move the shaft up or down by turning the knob on the top. I have never found it to be more than +/- 1 full turn from where I started, but there is a musical sweet spot you can't miss if you listen.

I imagine other Graham arms have this adjustability, but this is the only one I own, so I can't comment further.

I would add, too, that a Fozgometer helped to dial in the azimuth and the Walker Motor Controller holds the speed dead steady.
I asterisked (*) the Surreal Sound Audio Speakers as I am the Sales Manager for them.

Associated gear
Basis 2500
Walker Motor Controller
Lyra Titan stereo cart
Tara Labs Zero GX Phono cable
Atma-Sphere MP1 Preamp
Cary Slm 100 monoblocks with Shuguang Treasure KT88's
Surreal Sound Audio Speakers*

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previously owned SOTA Sapphire, Linn Ittok arm with more or less gear listed above