I do not see anywhere on this web site what alignment the protractor is set to. For modern systems the best alignment is Lofgren B. It has the lowest distortion over most of the record. It is only higher at the very inside of the record which is avoided by most companies. You only set very thin run out areas on old classical records. Records with run out areas over 1/2" avoid the high distortion region entirely.
The most versatile and the most well made protractor is the SmarTractor. It is expensive until you compare it to the cost of a turntable/tonearm/cartridge set up. It is also the easiest to use and it gives you the choice of all modern alignments.
If the Mint uses Lofgren B then it would be a very good protractor at a very reasonable price. If not ........
@mijostyn , agreed. For years I used Baerwald/Lofgren A. Switching to Lofgren B yielded obvious improvement. Wallytractors offer both curves. I believe Yip used Baerwald for the ones he made me long ago but I can find no documentary evidence.
I did a similar experiment two days ago, setting up a Benz TR on a Phantom Supreme using a dedicated Wallytractor’s Lofgren A curve, then the Lofgren B curve. All other parameters were as close to identical as I could make them. Lofgren B was (and is, since I am listening to it now) obviously better. Good enough? It is for me.
And just to up the ante: I have another TR, a new one with maybe 40 hours, on another armwand. Before the experiment, when both were aligned using A, I thought this new one sounded better than the older one, which had been rebuilt. They can be easily swapped. I think the rebuilt one, aligned with B, now sounds better to me. Not a definitive experiment. Everything is not controlled. But I’m sticking with B. FWIW, YMMV, yadda yadda.
Good for Mint! Ask for Lofgren B! Does it sound better? Most of us, it not all of us could not reliably tell the deference. But, Lofgren B has provably lower distortion over most of the record. What we hear is the additive effect of all distortion. It you minimize it everywhere you can throughout the entire audio chain the end result is more accurate sound.
Dear @wrm57 : " Lofgren B was (and is, since I am listening to it now) obviously better. Good enough? It is for me. "
Measured differences " numbers " between A and B and maintaining the same efective lenght are really minimal .
To mantain both set ups the same: A and B alignments must be seeting up with different P2S distance that were the one calculated for each kind of alignment.
Measures says ( example: EL 254.00 mm. ) that at 90mm from the center spindle the traking distortion is higher in the A alignment by 0.15% na the tracking error higher by 0.29° been the offset angle the same and overhang difference is: 0.46 mm. and the average rms distortions is higher by 0.04%.
Obviously that after each set up we have to check VTF, VTA and AZ.
It’s not so obvious that with all those measures/and new set up parameters how any one can/could listen any differences in between other that we " want " to hear it...
Sorry. I meaned calculated not measured..
@rauliruegas , Maybe I just got lucky with the B alignment and associated parameters, and then rushed to judgement. But I certainly prefer how it sounds now, and will keep using B until my “luck” changes.
Dear @mijostyn @wrm57 : There is no perfect tonearms. All develops its own colorations that are independent of the tracking error and then those self tonearm colorations comes mixed with the self cartridge colorations and it's these mixed colorations what at the end say what we like more or less.
All those " play " and developed colorations in the analog domain is what we " like " because changing those colorations is way fun for all of us and is something that the digital alternative just does not permits at the same levels ! ! even that digital is a superior medium that analog..
I love analog and like digital too.