Sumiko F4 with 103R sounds flat???

I have a Sota Sapphire turn table, with Sumiko F4 arm. I am really disappointed. It doesn't come near my CD sound stage.
I am new to audiophile. Try to keep it basic, but what might be wrong?
Thank you Raul. You are probably correct. I am new to this, and didn't want to become an audiophile nut. I sell vintage Porsches, and know how deeply you can get involved. That is NOT what I want for my sound system. I just want to enjoy it. I love the Vintage components, and they are affordable. I have a McIntosh 6500, Meridian 608.24, Infinity RS ll. I bought the Sota Sapphire, and thought the 103R was the right cartridge improvement. I guess I have created new issues I wasn't aware of. What is the Cartridge you advise? Previous owner loved the 103 MM. I really appreciate your input, as its getting discouraging. I want to get through this asap.
I used a 103R on an FT3 for a few years and it worked well. The Denon benefits from a body change (to wood) and a higher mass arm than your FT4 but if it's sounding crappy compared to your CD player, there is something definitely wrong.

Could be improper setup on the cartridge. The remark about tracking the Denon at 2 grams above is totally off base; tracking range given by Denon is 2.2 to 2.8 and I wouldn't consider tracking a stock 103R below 2.5 and think that 2.6 is definitely THE tracking force for the cartridge.

You need very close to 60 db of gain in your phono stage with a load preferably in the 40 ohm to 100 ohm range. It's quite possible, as another poster above mentioned, that you do not have an appropriate phono stage for the cartridge.

In any event, something is wrong and it's not likely to be the Denon or your FT4.
At this point, it sounds like you want to keep it simple -- yet you have a rather tweaky analog front end with step-ups, a low-output MC cartridge, etc.

You also said the sound from your analog rig is not even close to the sound of CD. Perhaps you just like the sound of digital better, and no turntable will ever satisfy you, at least nothing that costs a reasonable amount and does not require more tweaking than rebuilding one of your Porsche's flax sixes. S

I think you have two options here:

(1) As others have said, find a local analog expert and pay him to come to your home do a professional setup and/or offer some advice. This could be expensive, and it could lead to additional expense. It may or may not be worth it. There's no way to tell until it's done.


(2) Get rid of the Sota, Sumiko, Denon and Cinemag. Get a simple analog package (with MM or high output MC cartridge) instead for occasional enjoyment of stuff you can't find on CD. My top recommendations are the Rega P3 and Technics SL-1200Mk2. Get it professionally setup by the dealer and buy a record cleaning machine.

If the sound is REALLY bad, cartridge break in, VTA adjustment, etc will have little effect.

But before you do any of that, tell us about the rest of your system. What are you running the Cinemag into? Speakers?
I think its my phono stage. Going to try another next week.
Using a McIntosh MA6500, Meridian 608.24 CD, Infinity RS II.
Its got to be the transformer, I hope. I will report back when I try another unit. Thanks for the input.