Which cartridge should I upgrade to now?

Hi folks,

My Shelter 501 Mk 11 cartridge needs replacing after years of  wonderful service. What I get next will be going onto an RB250 arm with a Half Moon counterweight, that sits on a Nottingham Analog Studios Horizon table.

I haven't thought exhaustively about this yet, but my current candidates are a Denon DL 103R, & perhaps one of the Hana cartridges, maybe the EL or the SH, based purely on the rave reviews. The SH in particular is double the cost of what I can get the Denon for ($330 AUD {Australian dollars} with free shipping), but I'm prepared to pay the extra if the difference is thought to be substantial. 

I'd prefer to not spend more than about $500 USD, which with the current exchange rate & shipping will translate into about $750 AUD. I'm happy to hear your opinions, not only on these cartridges, but other candidates you deem worthy.


I don't know what the Dynavector costs in Australia; but in the USA it's a bit over your budget. I think the Denon DL-301 MKII is a better match for your RB250 than the 103R. I really like the sound of mine on a Sumiko MMT; but it's my first MC, so what do I know.

I think re-tipping the 501 would be a tad cheaper, unless you don't like it's SQ. In that case you could sell it and add the cash to your budget and get the Dynavector or maybe even something a bit better.
You should consider an Audiomods tonearm, which would be in your budget and is a drop in replacement for your Rega
I second Dynavector.  A much better match for Rega arms.  If you can stretch a little to the 20x2, you'd have your choice between low output and high output MC versions.

For consideration: I've seen many RB300 and RB600 arms come and go here on A'gon for well under $1000...would be a drop in replacement/upgrade for your RB250.

FWIW, I also agree that the Denon 103 would be out-of-sorts on a Rega arm. Because of it's stiff compliance, it really thrives with a much heavier arm.
I'll second the recommendation for the Audiomods tonearm. I upgraded from a RB250 to the Audiomods and have been extremely pleased with the improvements. One of the great audio bargains IMO.  
Got the Audiomods Classic 11 arm. Great. Improvements appeared subtle at first, more apparent with a bit of time. Not long after had a little accident with my Shelter 501 mk 11 cartridge. Found a just retipped one on evil bay. It's just bliss now, for me anyway. 

Thanks for all your suggestions