Soundsmith Zephyr MkIII, Boheme on VPI Classic 2 Companion


My experiment with an Ortofon Black 2M is done. I am going to buy a Soundsmith Zephyr MkIII or a Boheme. I have a VPI Classic 2 Companion with a gimballed arm. The MkIII has a low compliance of 10, a mass of 10.27g and tracking from 1.8-2.2g. The Boheme has a medium compliance of 22, weight of 6.8g and tracking of 1.3g.

I cannot seem to get a straight answer on the question of which cartridge would be most appropriate for the gimballed Companion arm. These cartridges seem different enough that, logically, if one were the right one, the other must not be the right one. Or will either do? If, so, does anyone know what the difference between the MkIII and the Boheme is, practically speaking?

Thank you all in advance.
madgalatea
I have a Classic 1. I wouldn't obsess over which cart is "right" on paper. Both will probably play fine with each possibly having subtle cues that differentiate themselves.

Another cart in your price point is the Audio Technica ART 9.

As you can see by the thread, it plays like a mega buck cart.

https://forum.audiogon.com/discussions/pani-new-art-9-up-and-running?highlight=art%2B9



Addition intended for original post: Have you contacted SS with your questions?
Also the VPI forum may be helpful.
I use the gimbal arm with the Sound-Smith Mimic Star and it is a perfect match, resonance of 10 Hz..  I have used the Zephyr on it and it was perfect also but the resonance was 12 Hz, still not an issue.  Have not used your two choices.  
Thanks for the replies. I am married, essentially, to my ARC PH-3 as a part of an all-ARC system I like. (I have bought nothing but ARC tube gear and VPI tables since the mid-eighties!) It is not compatible with MC cartridges. I chose the two Soundsmiths just based on the fact that they are high-ish output and are at the top of my budget at $1200. I am open to suggestion, however.  The Sumiko Blackbird, Dynavector - 20x2-H, Clearaudio - Maestro V2 Ebony MM (I ran a Clearaudio Veritas for years that I loved), and the Hana - S MC look interesting too. The Ortofon Black 2m was too etched for me...
"I use the gimbal arm with the Sound-Smith Mimic Star and it is a perfect match, resonance of 10 Hz..  I have used the Zephyr on it and it was perfect also but the resonance was 12 Hz, still not an issue.  Have not used your two choices." 


I understand the Zephyr was designed with the Unipivot arm in mind. I understand you found it to work well on the gimballed arm as well. I did not enjoy the Unipivot on my Scout and Scoutmaster - no offense, they just weren't for me. I do like the gimballed arm on the Companion, however, very much. Any idea what the resonance would be for the Boheme? I guess I need to call SS Monday.
This is a nice tool to use finding cartridge and tonearm compatibility!

http://www.vinylengine.com/cartridge_resonance_evaluator.php
They would both be fine.....the Zephyr sounds a bit light to ME...just wondering when you made that comment about the Black that the Zephyr might not hit the right cord either.
After speaking with Soundsmith, I decided on the Boheme. Thanks to all.
I have heard a Boheme on uni-pivot classic and it sounds great. Also if you know the effective mass on the tonearm you can always go to the Vinyl Engine website and find out if a cart in question will match the arm. 

Probably a good website to be on as it will beef up you analog knowledge. 


The Black too etched?...that's what I object to the Soundsmith carts.  As to which one is better....there is no answer....they both will work fine.
The Boheme has 54 hours on it and it is sounding great. It sounds a lot better than the Black - to me. The guy who bought my Black loves it. Worked out great. Thank God we all have different ears!