Zu DL-103 on an unlikely turntable.

The other night, I bought a hardly-used Zu-DL103 cartridge on impulse. The impulse was, of course, built up by reading only glowing reviews and staring at pictures of it for the previous week.

Now, almost every review of the original Denon cartridge mentions something to the effect of, "needs a heavy arm." I worried about whether I needed a new turntable, too.

When it arrived, I tentatively mounted it on my ADC 1600. Arm: 8.5g Effective mass. Thank goodness for the sliding counterweight that, after some wrangling, allowed the 2.5g VTF needed. I feared the worst...

Surprisingly, it makes music! You can see and hear it here:

The weight of the Zu housing adds to the effective mass, just as if your tonearm was heavier. The Zu's design center is the Rega arm, with an effective mass of around 9 grams, so you are really not far off at all.

I prefer the stock 103 in an arm of over 15 grams effective mass.