Sensible upgrade from Denon DL160


Hi all,

I'm looking for an upgrade from my DL160 Cart running on a Rega P25 (With Groovetracer mods) hooked up to a lehmman Black Cube.

I'm happy with the overall sound, I guess where I see weaknesses is vocals can sound metalic and bass feels a little flabby at times. My musical interests are varied, mainly rock (new stuff) and jazz (old stuff). I like the overall warmth of the denon sound just looking to refine it I guess.

any suggestions greatly appreciated - $500-$700 tops and I'm willing to look 2nd hand

thanks!
jpearce1b
Dynavector DV20XH, Audio Technica AT150MLX would be my choices.
Hi Jxxx,
If you can find an NOS Ortofon "M20FL super" you be off to the races = ~ 150$! I had some to say about it and you can look it up here:
http://forum.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/fr.pl?eanlg&1200430667&&&&&st450
Greetings,
Jpearcelb: I agree with Axel and this other one could be a good choice improvement too:
http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?anlgcart&1253551030&/Sumiko-Andante-P-76-New-Phono-

Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul.
+1 on the AT150MLX. I upgraded from the DL-160 to the AT150MLX over a year ago and haven't looked back (or to the side) since.

The tonal balances are very similar, but the AT gives you more of what you're looking for--tighter bass, faster overall response, airier treble without artifice, much better transparency everywhere and esp. noticeable in the midrange. With your Black Cube you should get excellent dynamics. Very grainless with its PCOCC wiring.

Best of all, it's as cheap to own as a DL-160--LPGear sells the replacement stylus for the same price as a DL-160 ($179.95).
Denon 304, AT 33 [ the lower complience version] Both avalable at $350-400.
Dear Johnnyb53: I know that you are an advocate to the 150MLX that is a good cartridge, well as good as the AT is IMHO that Ortofon M20FL Super Axel advise is something that is worth that you hear even the very low price Andante P-76 is a " contender ". I prefer both over that AT cartridge, but this is system dependent and as always a very personal/subjective opinion.

Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul.
08-03-09: Rauliruegas
Dear Johnnyb53: I know that you are an advocate to the 150MLX that is a good cartridge, well as good as the AT is IMHO that Ortofon M20FL Super Axel advise is something that is worth that you hear even the very low price Andante P-76 is a "contender".
Well, sure Raul, but not everybody has the time or patience to scour the world for a 20-30 yr-old new-old-stock model. Something affordable and readily available today that is a noticeable upgrade over the DL-160 is, I think, a legitimate alternative.

Another upgrade might be the new Ortofon 2M series. I came across a review that compared the 2M Blue favorably to the M20FL Super. I'd think the 2M Black or Bronze would be an instant and significant upgrade as well.
Dear Johnny: I see. Well you can find both: the Ortofon and the Andante right now here:

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/Ortofon-M-20-FL-M20FL-Super-Tonabnehmer-NOS_W0QQitemZ260318612620QQcmdZViewItemQQptZPlattenspielerzubehör?hash=item3c9c32cc8c&_trksid=p3286.c0.m14&_trkparms=65:1|66:2|39:1|240:1318|301:1|293:1|294:50

http://www.audiogon.com/cgi-bin/cls.pl?anlgcart&1253551030&/Sumiko-Andante-P-76-New-Phono-

both NOS.

Regards and enjoy the music,
Raul.
at150xl one of the best mm's period.
much food for thought, thanks to all. hadn't thought mm carts would be suggested so looks like i have some more research to do!
"Bass feels a little flabby at times" is a pretty good description of the Black Cube. The thing is almost a PRaT filter. I can't think of a worse choice for reproducing rock music.
Robdoorack
you mention:
>> "Bass feels a little flabby at times" is a pretty good description of the Black Cube <<
Black Cube? = M2 Black??

What ever, it is exactly what a M20FL super would NOT be doing, it has a very defined bass, - maybe because it's an MI?
Can't say, but flabby bass with this one --- NO WAY!
My Orpheus picky audio-friend noticed that as the very first thing when compared to some other MMs I had in my rig. Not that some "pouncey" bass is always SUCH an unwelcome thing --- as with the rock music you mentioned, there are PLENTY bloody thin and boney recordings that can do with a bit odd 'filler' at the bottom. At least in my experience.
Axel
The Dl-160 is probably being used straight into 47K, try 1K.
Totally agree with Phill. I ran a DL-160 through a load lower than the 47K and it improved most of the issues you are concerned about. I found 22K to work very well for the DL-160 and subsequently for the Sumiko Blackbird(a cartridge that may be worth you looking at in your range used.)