Tonearm Suggestions

I have limited knowledge on tonearms and need suggestions on a tonearm new or used on a $1000 budget (max) that will out perform my modifed RB-300 with drop counterweight, VTA adjuster and VdH wire.

The cartridge I use is a Grado Reference so it will have to be lightweight to limit that infamous "Grado Dance". I also use a Golden Cross phono cable and the table is similar to a Linn Sondek

I thought maybe Hadcock or Morch because their light but thats pushing the limit if bought new.

Any other suggestions would be helpful.
Willson Act5 comes rightaway in mind.
Smokes RB arms + has better adjustability to a different carts.
Is your turntable suspended or non-suspended? That could make a difference in what is recommended.

I replaced an Audioquest with a Moerch PT6 this year. A big, big, big step up, for sure. But also a whole lot more $.

There's always the used market for older SME's and such.

Good luck,
Go Hadcock or Morch - they will outperform the Rega by a huge (and very noticable) margin.

You can get both used for very reasonable prices - I paid less for my Morch UP4s (I have 2) than what I paid to have my Rega upgraded. After listening to the Morch I got rid of the Rega - IMHO it is little more than junk compared to a UP4.

I second (or third) the recommendation for a Morch, if you want something that is still in current production. I have a preference for unipivots and preferred my UP 4 over an Origin Live Silver Taper.

If you don't mind going vintage (well, sort of), try to find a Technics EPA-100, which is light enough to handle MM (high compliance) carts and most of not all medium compliance carts, should your tastes change. I have one on my Technics SP-25 in the study running a Shure V15 Type III with good results.
Kel, I forgot to mention. You get 4 different mass 9" arms for the Morch and I think 2 different mass 12" arms. So whatever cart you need to run you will be able to source an arm to match.

I have not run a Grado myself, but another poster who has a Morch/Grado combo informed me that Grado recommend the heavier (blue dot) arm for the Grado. It did not make sense to me but you may want to follow up with Grado if you decide to go with a Morch.

Again, they are simply light years ahead of anything I have heard from Rega.

If you are on a budget I suggest you consider a Bel Canto / Scheu unipivot. They are available in both 10" and 12" lengths and retail for around $500 to $600. I have a 12" Scheu and to be totally honest I prefer it to my Morch arms. It is a star performer.

Hi pauly

Thanks for the suggestions when you say the Morch out performs a Rega do you mean a modified version.

Mine has vdh wire, cardas clips, vta adjuster and heavyweight. Also is the Morch suitable for a suspended table?
The Morch outperforms modified RB300’s by quite a margin – it is a different class altogether. Try a Morch, you will be shocked (and impressed). As I mention I have two on my turnable.

I have never tried a Morch on a suspended table, so I cannot comment. However, I have no reason to believe that it would not work on a properly tuned suspended table.

On the suspended table you have to measure the weight of an armboard.
Weight of Armboard + Weight of Tonearm shouldn't change.
Hi Marakanetz

I"m not sure I follow you perhaps you could elaborate.

My table doesn't have an armboard it is connected directly to the subchassis. The subchassis is made of metal and also contains the bearing housing making it quite heavy.
...than the kinematics are much more sophisticated or straightup you should look for the tonearm of exactly the same weight.

my Michell has an armboard for RBs but whenever i'd want to change arm i could order a different armboard for such...