MC Cartridge Advice, $1-2K zone

My dealer spoke very highly of the DV XX2. Since I saved a few bucks (quite a few actually) by getting a used power supply and arm board, I decided to go with another DV TKR. A great cartridge but about double the OP’s budget.

well, the verdict…

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My Le Son LS10 MkII cartridge arrived yesterday.
Postage door to door (China to Australia) took 16 days. Tracking information was excellent.
It was well packed and seems to have survived the journey.

No frequency plot for the cartridge was supplied.

My TT guru gets back from Munich on June 6 so I’m hoping to have it installed within a week from then.

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Great news! Give us your impressions once you’ve got it singing.

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Hi all. Just reporting on my Le Son LS10 MkII cartridge…
The manufacturer recommends a 30hr break-in period.
I’m around 1/2 way through and it gets better with every listen.

The cartridge it replaced (Soundsmith ‘The Voice’ moving iron) has a more sophisticated cantilever and stylus profile and costs over double that of the Le Son.
Even so, the Le Son bests the 13 year old Soundsmith in most parameters. Bass in particular is much less flabby, tighter and more tuneful with the LeSon.
The one area it trails is with ‘air’ around instruments in the soundstage.
The LeSon renders a large soundstage with individual instruments identifiable but the whole image is more homogeneous compared to the Soundsmith which paints instruments in a more individual way. i.e. more ‘air’ around some instruments.

Early on in Walking in Your Footsteps on the Police album Synchronicity, there are some sticks tapped together. With the Soundsmith, these sticks occupy their own space in the soundstage. With the Le Son, the sticks are in the same place in the soundstage and just as easy to pinpoint, but they blend in with the rest of the sonic picture.

But remember the Le Son is still breaking in and is improving. And despite the above, I feel the Le Son is already a keeper.

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thank you

your description of air around instruments is analogous to my description of performer spaces, ie position as well as immediately surrounding space

looking forward to your burn-in progress