How important is Cartridge Overhang? Need help

Just received a Mint protractor for my Pro-ject 2 Xperience. I started the processes of setting the Overhang and it seems that my Ortofon HMC 20 can't achieve the proper overhang. The cartridge is maxed out to the front of the head shell and the result I get is: at the outside of the arc it sits perfectly and on the inside it sits behind the arc. I guess my question is this how important is overhang and if it is important is there a good compromise.Should I just get as close as I can and worry more about alignment?
if you want to hear the best possible performance overhang is very important. perfectly mounted modestly priced cartridges will outperform poorly mounted expensive cartridges. the vinyl groove is picky about how the stylus 'sees' the groove surfaces. until you get it right you will not know what you are missing.

i looked at the manual for your turntable. it does not describe whether your tonearm mounting position is adjustable. i will try to explain.

as your turntable appears to be sold as a tt/arm 'package' i assume the pivot to spindle distance is fixed. when the tonearm mounting position is adjustable then when a cartridge has a non-standard relationship between the mounting screw holes and stylus position the arm can be moved to allow a proper overhang.

the only thing that matters is hitting the arc precisely. if you cannot hit the arc on the Mint exactly with the arm and headshell in their current postion then either;

1. you need to move the arm mounting position.
2. you need to somehow adjust the headshell postion.
3. get a different cartridge that fits.
4. settle for an improper alignment.

my recommendation would be to speak to the dealer that sold you that tt, or someone else who owns one, and run thru what you have done.

hopefully when you look closer there will be some sort of arm mounting adjustment.
There are many ways to adjust overhang and some are quite different: Baerwald, Loefgren or Stevenson. has a great section on cartridge alignment and you can download and print different protractors. Maybe you can find the right one that will work with your cartridge and turntable.
Hi, Wilson667; the first question (just to be sure) is what are the spindle-to-pivot and effective length distances that your Mint protractor is designed to accomodate? The second question is what is the distance (measured as best you can) from the mounting holes in the cartridge to the stylus tip?

If the Mint protractor is designed for a spindle-to-pivot distance of 212mm and an effective length of 230mm then it's a match for the 9cc arm that comes with the Experience 2. (Sorry if you know that already; just helps to troubleshoot if all the information is available.)

As for the Ortofon HMC20, if the distance from the mounting holes to the stylus is about 6mm or more you should be able to set overhang correctly. That's assuming the 9cc has slots in the headshell the same as the headshell on a 9 aluminum arm. If the mounting hole to stylus distance is less than 6mm it may require you to use a different protractor and a different alignment geometry. Between the handy alignment geometry calculators available at VinylEngine and the TemplateGen (custom) protractor available from Conrad Hoffman you'll find something that could work very well.

Maybe I'm missing something. It is hard to get the picture without seeing it.

I'll assume you have followed others advice and have verified the P2S.

You say that the cart is all the way forward, it hits the arc on the outside but sits behind the arc on the inside. And that the cartridge is all the way forward in the slots.

So, if you move the Mint protractor back until the stylus is on the arc at the inside, will the cart not be too far forward on the outside now? Which is ok, because you can move the cart back in its slots.

Of course after you move the cart back, you will now need to move the protractor again to align the inside and then recheck the outside again. Keep doing this, correctly, and you should find that everything is converging on the arc. Using an arc protractor is an iterative process. I think you just need some practice.

Perhaps it will be easier to start with the cart in the middle of the slots?