Argument from authority (argumentum ad verecundiam)? Congratulation Chakster for owning the best. Now is the time for you to stop buying cartridges otherwise your best will soon become trash...As for your experience: everyone can judge based on this thread.
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So when you’re trying to educate me with your old garbage, do yourself a favor and buy a better cartridges first, there are much better Stanton and Pickering available today on used market for reasonable prices. Even the mid prices 881s mkII is a better one and if the disk mastering standard is important for you read this article about 881s mkII (Doung Sax’s choice was an MM 881s until his dead in 2015). Then maybe you will understand why the XV15 is inferior cartridge and why it was lower and cheaper in the Pickering line back in the day and still today.
Or simply tell us what is your own reference in MI or MM design.
You made only 19 posts on audiogon and already stated that XV15 is "Fantastic cartridge!", i think this statement is overreacted. In my opinion an entry level cartridge does not mean a "bad one" too.
But in your opinion everyone who said it’s not a "fantastic cartridge" (but a mediorce one) is a snob and you’re suspicious that a snob never tried such wonderful cartridge like XV15 or its Stanton equivalent. But what about better Pickering/Stanton cars, do you ever tried them yourself?
I’m glad there are a Stereohedron stylus available even for entry level cartridge as an upgrade, but do you know what the OP has on his Pickerings (which stylus) ? Normally there are coming with cheapest Spherical stylus or Elliptical, i’ve never seen this model for sale with Stereohedron stylus.
Our Mexican (Raul) started a thread about MM and there were "a cartridge of the month" he raved about, a decade later he said they are all inferior compared to his new ADC 26/27, but before he said the same about another 10 cartridges and each time it was the best of the best cartridge ever. What a BS!?
My philosophy is "If it's not better than digital, why bother". That's not snobbery but just my fact of life; who needs the problems of records when the convenience of CD's is at their fingertips; especially when it sounds better.
My analog, that I went through great trouble and expense, sounds better than my digital; it compels me to listen, I finally discovered what the fuss was about.
Since Pickering, Stanton, and Shure, plus Empire, were fantastic cartridges before CD, I'm quite familiar with all of them, but they don't exceed good digital, and that's my point; the analog must exceed the digital, otherwise, why bother?
After a moderator removed some of my posts i will leave this thread.
Especially when Mexican start posting his BS again, vinylengine is not a good source and full of mistakes when it comes to cartridge specs, styli types and some other information. This is the last source i will take seriously if i can’t see the scan of the original manual with correct data.
I believe the Mexican doesn’t understand which type of cartridge the XV-15 really is (MM like stated on your vinylengine or MI? This is a first thing to start with). The information on vinyl engine (except for the real scans of the actual manuals) is wrong for many cartridges, people have no idea what they are posting on vinyl engine database, it’s an open source and no one cares to correct the mistakes in techical data coming from other members.
What is more important is that you have no idea which stylus profile the OP has on his XV15, if this profile is conical this is a bad news, it it’s bonded elliptical this is a bad news, if for some reason someone already purchased a better stylus with better profile to add on mediorce cartridge body then it can be Stereohedron, only with this profile this entry level cartridge can benefit and will be able to reproduce records in a good way with less record wear and much wider frequency response.
But most likely the profile by default is the cheapest conical or bonded elliptical. It will be very hard to find a NOS Stereohedron stylus replacement.
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