Mint LP provides Stevenson Alignment


First, I happen to own and like a Mint LP protractor, but over the course of time it has become obvious to me that no one up to now has pointed out that it is providing the Stevenson alignment.  I have even read several self appointed  experts here argue vehemently that either Lofgren or Baerwald alignments are far superior to Stevenson, but then go on to equally strongly advocate the use of the Mint LP.  If ever there were an argument that alignment is somewhat over emphasized in our hobby, this is perhaps a good example of the truth of that thought.  Recently I bought a Feickert protractor, which is very easy to use and have tried all the alignments using it.  I can hear differences, but not always, certainly not on every track of every record, and honestly they are all good.  So don't get you pants in a bunch over this trivial issue.
billstevenson
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@billstevenson 

Hi Bill. thanks for the reply.

  Given the 3 tables you mention, logic dictates Yip used Stevenson. the VPI alignment jig, Harry says its designed to have the least distortion in the last 3rd of the LP so similar to Stevenson.  As we all know the last 3rd is the hardest part of any LP to track and play, hence why having the least distortion in alignment curves imo is the most important aspect ( despite our mexican friend not being able to hear as he only listens to specs, not music) 

  At some stage, it might be fun to use the VPI alignment jig to see if you still prefer the Mint Stevenson alignment.

cheers
Somehow lost in the ensuing discussion is a point made in my original post, which is that I recently bought a Feickert protractor.  It is from the use of it that my observations concerning Baerwald, Lofgren and Stevenson are derived.  I did compare the VPI jig with the Mint LP some years ago when the Prime was first purchased.  I felt that the Mint LP yielded the better results between the two, but admit that my conclusion could have been reached on the basis of expectation as much as on actual sound.  With that said, the VPI jig is not a particularly precise device and it is almost impossible to obtain repeatable results using it.  One of my curses is that I am an engineer, for better or for worse.

To complete this circle, I think properly executed any of the three alignments provides quite acceptable results.  The difference between Baerwald and Lofgren is often extremely subtle or some times even indecipherable.  Stevenson is different enough to be consistently noticeable and it can be better, worse, or neither depending on the position of the cartridge relative to the spindle and of course listener taste. 

Something that has not been mentioned yet is that the whole alignment issue is really very vague.  Rare is the perfectly flat record.  Equally rare is the record with a hole placement that is perfectly centered.  So we take our imperfect records and align them using one model or another and give a listen to side one.  Then, between hammer blows to one another, we turn the record over and get ready for side two.  Does anyone honestly think that the alignment on side two is identical to what it was on side one?  And of course the alignment on neither side is perfect because of the imperfections of the records anyway.  So alignment is all a set of approximations. The irrationality of all the fuss defies any semblance of logic.
billstevenson
... the VPI jig is not a particularly precise device and it is almost impossible to obtain repeatable results using it.
If the results are not repeatable, then it is by definition not precise. That’s not the kind of tool I’d want to be using.
... the alignment on neither side is perfect because of the imperfections of the records anyway. So alignment is all a set of approximations. The irrationality of all the fuss defies any semblance of logic.
That’s not the way I see it; I think it pays to start with as precise an alignment as possible. Consider the benefits of precise four-wheel alignment on your car. Roads aren’t level (they’re usually crowned by design), we don’t drive in straight lines or consistent curves, and roads are full of bumps and irregularities. But a good car handles better when the wheels are correctly aligned, regardless of the road.

In my view, setup is everything with LP playback. It doesn’t matter that virtually no LP is perfect.
Dear @downunder : I think that you as @billstevenson  want to win this discussion and both of you along those japanese tonearms that use ST alignment are way wrong and not because I say that or because I " only listens to specs, not MUSIC ".

No, boths of you are wrong because in reality did not READ what other gentlemans posted as what @hdm and me posted or what VPI designer posted somewhere. Let me explain why you just don't read the posts or for whatever reasons just don't understand it/misunderstood it:


"""  logic dictates Yip used Stevenson. the VPI alignment jig, Harry says its designed to have the least distortion in the last 3rd of the LP so similar to Stevenson. As we all know the last 3rd is the hardest part of any LP to track and play, hence why having the least distortion in alignment curves imo is the most important aspect..."""

hdm posted that he owns four MINTLP protractors: 2 Baerwald, one Löfgren B and one ST.

I posted a simple fact: ST HAS LOWER TRACKING DISTORTIONS IN THE LAST 3mm.  of a LP with recorded grooves in the last inner groove distance: 60 mm. where only a few LPs has it.

Where did you read about that 3rd last part of the grooved LP surface. ST advantage is only in the last 3mm.. Repeat: LAST 3mm.

Got it? or have to repeat again.

Btw, the VPI jig has nothing to do with ST alignment, the designer has not so lower knowledge levels on that regards.

R.