SOTA / FT-3 / Sonata compatability?

I'm considering buying a Grado high output Sonata for my SOTA Sapphire turntable (circa late 1980s) and Premier FT-3 tonearm. Has anyone had any experience with this combination or have any comments or suggestions?

Hi, Dave:

I used to own a Premier FT-3K tonearm, and used it with several different Grados. The combination was a good, moderately-priced one. The only problem that the Grado cartridges tend to have is susceptibility to hum caused by the turntable motor. This hum is not normally audible when playing an LP. I have not used this tonearm/cartridge combo on a SOTA turntable, but hum was not a problem with my VPI HW-10 Mark 4. Since the SOTA is a quiet table with a decently shielded motor, I don't think you will experience any problems.
I have been using a Sota Saphire III/Audioquest PT-5/Grado MCZ since early '90s. No hum problems at all. My next cartridge will be a Sonata.
Warning!! I am a dealer. I've been a Sota and Grado dealer for 20 years. The Sonata will work fine in the FT3. The Grado's will pick up AC hum in some turntables because they are not shielded. However, the SOTA has a DC servo motor, so the Grado won't have the AC hum problem. -Harry
Wow !!! I guess Harry gave everyone ample notice that his opinion might be "biased" : ) None the less, i think he answered the question with the most thorough answer. Three cheers for "upright" dealers !!! : ) Sean
Kudos to HCM Audio. I have bought a number of products from them over the years, and been totally satisfied. Thanks, Harry, for the fine service and integrity.