Eminent Technology ET-2 Tonearm Owners

Where are you? What mods have you done ?

I have been using these ET2's for over 9 years now.
I am still figuring them out and learning from them. They can be modified in so many ways. Bruce Thigpen laid down the GENIUS behind this tonearm over 20 years ago. Some of you have owned them for over 20 years !

Tell us your secrets.

New owners – what questions do you have ?

We may even be able to coax Bruce to post here. :^)

There are so many modifications that can be done.

Dressing of the wire with this arm is critical to get optimum sonics along with proper counterweight setup.

Let me start it off.

Please tell us what you have found to be the best wire for the ET-2 tonearm ? One that is pliable/doesn’t crink or curl. Whats the best way of dressing it so it doesn’t impact the arm. Through the spindle - Over the manifold - Below manifold ? What have you come up with ?
 Thanks for the tips!  Using the supplied alignment guide, I feel like I have it set pretty good. I will not be able to do any critical setup or listening till I get the table out of my shop. The SOTA table is to big to fit on my audio rack, luckily the SOTA came with a large heavy duty rack, but it needs some work.
I think I need to adjust the arm somehow. The larger end of the cuing tube is slightly in the way of letting the arm come down into the lead-in, it lands in the start of the first track, not in the lead-in.
Consider yourself lucky to have that alignment gauge, Brad. I never had one and had to get creative to set the trajectory.

Re: the queuing problem, did you get the joint pushed back on the spindle far enough?

Hey Brad,
Also check for obstructions in the airline and nipple feeding the body of the manifold housing.
It’s always preferable to eliminate obstacles between nipples and the mani folds of our bodies...

Fumbling around (...) with air bearing arms, also of other makes makes things appear simpler than they seem:
It’s simply a question of turning the arm around the mounting hole to get the exact desired travel, as defined by the lift bar. It may look slightly twisted though, but that’s the correct way. (You might correct a bit with pulling the end travel "hood" pushed over the bar... a bit)
But basically the travel is set by turning the arm around the single mounting screw and finding the correct position.
Tangentiality then is set by adjusting the length of the arm, ie. (non) "overhang".
Actually all is very simple.

What’s less obvious is that it is important to have
c) the surface of recordings in average level,
b) the platter and platter bearing level, (maybe with a smidgen of defined tilt toward the motor, both for optimized friction or dynamic behaviour with belt drives) and
a) the arm level. With highly increasing importance:
It’s a) where the setup sensitivity of passive tangential arms differs widely from pivoting arms.
The whole mass of the arm - dynamic and static - pulls sideways with the slightest off-level.
A normal pivoting arm with tilted setup compensates gravity "error" almost completely (with only the tracking force / weight remaining). With dynamically balanced arms it cancels to 100%.

Fortunately the air bearing arm itself is maybe the best measuring device on earth for off-levelness.
It is my understanding that for proper setup if one imagines (or when using the set-up jig) a straight line from the front edge of the turntable to the back edge and which goes directly through the platter’s spindle, the ET2’s tonearm tube should "intersect" that line at precisely 90 degrees. Assuming that the mounting base was aligned correctly, if one were to "turn(ing) the arm around the mounting hole" it seems to me that the desired geometry would be altered. The problem with the stylus landing inside of the lead-in groove can most easily be solved by moving the cap at the front end of the cuing eccentric ("cuing tube") towards the front so as to give the spindle extra travel distance toward the front before being stopped by the cap as intended. There is a fair amount of adjustability front to back available for this.