Sundsmith rebuild.

I just had a Monstercable Alpha1 rebuilt by Soundsmith. I opted for the $150 rebuild (their cheapest -- it's a very old cartridge, and my first rebuild experience).

Wow! I am blown away! It is really good sounding.

At first it was shrill. I was concerned. Then I adjusted the VTA, and let it break in more.

The cartridge has settled in beautifully. Highs are definitely not shrill. Detail is there, so is a nice tight bass. Voices are present and not veiled. There is really good air and depth. The highs and midrange are so much better than I expected; and the bass is very satisfying.

$150 incredibly well spent!!! I am pleased and will send more of my old cartridges to them.

I would love to hear about your cartridge rebuild experiences, as I like the dialogue forum.

SoundSmith has done a couple for me...EXCELLENT! Both of mine were the $250.00 rebuilds.
How long did you have to wait for the work to be done?
I recently sent a Van den Hul MC-10 MC to Soundsmith to have the suspension replaced. Peter Lendermann called me and told me that the stylus and cantilever were in as new condition and the suspension was in fact all that it needed. I received the cartridge back from Soundsmith in about three weeks after I had sent it. The workmanship is excellent and I would recommend Soundsmith to anyone needing cartridge repair.
That's very interesting, as I have been waiting now seven months for my first Soundsmith retip. I have been patient & am still hoping for the best, but this approaches my limit.
14 weeks for retip ($250)

FYI, I sent my Grace F9E Ruby to Soundsmith in early October, and the email in which they provided me with an ra number included this statement:
Mr. Ledermann is recovering from some serious health problems, but is doing his best to catch up on cartridge repairs, and keep our repair turnaround time at about 12-14 weeks. We greatly appreciate your patience during this time.
Best regards,
-- Al
Thanks, Al. My blood pressure dropped a psi or two toward normal.
Hi all, I have sent a Sumiko Tallisman Virtuoso and a Dynavector XV1's for Peter to look at about 4 weeks ago. The Sumiko, the cantilever is not absolutely straight and the XV1's the styli is not pointing straight down. It appears that the cantilever rotated on its axis very slightly counterclockwise.

Long story short, i received the same message as Al that Peter was recovering from very serious health problems and the turn around was approx. 12-14 weeks.

Merry Christmas everyone.....
Peter did a re-tip for me last summer. Turn-around was approximately 8-10 weeks. I don't exactly remember. What I do have in mind is that I now have the cartridge and that it is better than before. I didn't have to suffer without vinyl because I had a few spare cartridges for back-up. Actually, the cartridge I sent in was regarded as a back-up. But now it gets full time duty in my TD124. And yes, it is a DL-103R, sporting a ruby/cantilever fine-line stylus housed in one of Uwe's panzerholz bodies. It's better sounding than I would have expected.

Further. I'm grateful that there is someone like Peter doing this service for us and our hobby. If he wasn't here, we'd have no one in North America to do this kind of work.

peter's work is first rate plus. the work he does is killer not good great. you could send your cart to england or vdhul an wait forever or get a rebuilt 103r w/wood body and relax
Dear Dgarretson,
I sent mine in at the end of June. I, too, was told via email of Mr. Ledermann's illness. So I waited patiently. By around Thanksgiving I was becoming concerned that my cartridge was lost in shipping to them. The next morning I received a call from Mr. Ledermann -- I would receive my cartridge shortly, and he explained the work that needed to be done to it.

I received my repaired cartridge in late December.

I will send him more cartridges to be repaired -- I am completely satisfied with his excellent work! The cartridge has now broken in fully. It sounds fantastic! Even though it was his cheapest repair, I am convinced of its quality.

There is really nice air around the instruments, vocals are pretty forward (but not too much so) and you can hear vocal nuances and timbral qualities, there is detail in spades, depth and width are excellent, and it is dynamic. I also like the tonal balance -- the midrange is silky, the highs are smooth, and the bass is taught.

Of course, I will post more results as I get more cartridges done.

Totally worth it! Long wait, but Mr. Ledermann was ill, and still extremely busy!
Hi Bicycleman, I received my OLC-retipped Helikon several days after my above post, followed by an email from Peter. I will shortly mount up for a listen.
Cool! I am interested in hearing about the sound differences after rebuild.