A Cartridge for Well Tempered Amadeus turntable

My vinyl setup currently consists of Well Tempered Amadeus turntable, DV XX2 mkII cartridge and Naim Superline (standard) phonostage. However, now the hours for the cartridge are beginning to be full meaning a replacement is needed. I have been very pleased with this combination and would have been happy to keep it as it is but I found out that unfortunately Dynavector is no longer represented in my region (at least not at the moment).

The dealer still had the DV XX2 mkII on their website but when I contacted them I was informed that it was not available anymore. Soundsmith Zephyr MIMC Star cartridge was offered as an alternative option instead. I did a bit reading and it seems that even if it has a lot of favourable reviews it could be a quite a bit different compared to the one I have now. I am also not so sure how well it would work with WTL TT (mounting and setup) and Superline (compatibility and loading). Has anyone had any experience on Zephyr MIMC and care to comment? Any suggestions for other suitable alternatives are of course welcome too.

There is of course the option to source Dynavector abroad. It could actually be nice to have a spring trip to Stockholm by ferry and visit a dealer who stock DV there. In this case I would of course need to change the cartridge myself and I am actually not too confident about that.

All in all quite a dilemma should I trust the dealer recommendation or my own DIY skills :sweat_smile:

Any thoughts, comments and advice are highly appreciated thanks in advance!

Are you aware of the Dynavector exchange scheme? You send in, say, an old XX2, and Dynavector send you back a new one with a 40% reduction on the purchase price.

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I was not aware of that, thanks for the info. However, shouldn’t that be arranged through a dealer/distributor? There isn’t any at the moment in Finland. I somehow understood that Dynavector do not communicate end users directly but this might be incorrect assumption.

Osprey, I suggest that you have a look online.

The UK distributor is Pear Audio. I’m sure that they will be able to help you, or point you in the direction of the distributors who operate the exchange scheme for your location. I can’t remember now whether I sent the old cartridge to Pear Audio, or had my dealer do this for me,

Good luck - let us know how you get on.


Thanks Graham, I’ll investigate further.

The XX-2 is a lovely cartridge. I had three over a period of ten years, and I now have a Te Kaitora Rua, which is perfect for the ARO.


As Graham said, best is to send the DV for a rebuild. But you will just have to be patient. Curious that your dealer didn’t advised you that.

As said unfortunately there is no dealer representation for DV anymore around here.

This is a small and faraway country :rofl:

My dealer could send my Lyra to Japan, and another dealer my Koetsu to Van den Hull, for rebuilding. Neither of them were selling Lyra or Koetsu.

Unfortunately it does not work like this here. The dealers are only interested in the items they are officially representing (which is understandable) and also note that there is currently no distributor in the country.

Anyhow I’ll follow the earlier advice and first try to contact Dynavector directly for further information/instructions. Also I would like to point out that this is not only about the replacement program and reduced price (which I am happy to get) but about to have a chance to buy this item at all.

In the meantime has anyone else any other comments or suggestions?

Maybe @Yeti . He has the Well Tempered tt and lots of different carts experience.
Good luck.

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Well Tempered Amadeus LTD tonearm comes with an effective mass of 10 gr. what requires a cartridge with a somewhat higher compliance. Dependen on the cartridges weight CU sould be in the range of 12 up to 26. Otherwise resonance frequency (optimum at 8 up to 10 Hz)will be too high.


@jsawyer09 has the AudioTechnica AT ART9


@Mechanalogue has the Hanna ML.


My brother has the Well Tempered Amadeus and has the Karat DV17DX. It’s similarly priced to the XX2 MkII as well. He says it works really well.

If you want to spend more money then there are plenty of alternatives.

I use an XX2 MkII and think it’s a great cart. Mayne get another. As @graham55 says there is an exchange programme for DV carts.


@Don_Camillo I managed to find the below specification for the Soundsmith cartridge:

Model: Zephyr MIMC Star standard
Cartridge Mass (grams): 10.25 / 12.2 (ES)
Compliance μm/mN: 10 (Low)
Cartridge Output: Low (0.4mV)
Recommended Loading: 470 - 1000 Ω
for Tone Arm Mass (grams): 7 - 29

Based on this what is your view, could this cartridge and WTL be compatible?

@frenchrooster thanks for the suggestions, AT and Hana are both available here so they could be alternative options.

@Dan_M I have been very pleased with xx2 and to continue with that would be my first option if I can get my hand on one (and sort somehow the mounting). It also set the price level for the alternatives I am looking for.

Thanks all for the comments and advice so far. If anyone has any other suggestions keep sharing them. I have also contacted Dynavector through their web page regarding the delivery (and rebuild) for the region without distributor. Let’s see what the answer will be.

My ex dealer owns a Versalex and I heard a few cartridges on it but don’t own one myself, I went for Schröder designs instead.
The DV cartridges suited the WT well when I’ve heard them together, unfortunately I heard the XV1t on it first which rather put the others in the shade. I wasn’t taken with the Benz ebony on it but the blue AN io was rather good but only puts out 0.04mV so hard to match to a phonostage. When I took a Versalex home for a play my Transfiguration didn’t really hit the spot on it, or I didn’t when setting it up.


The calculation result depends on the frequency at which the CU was measured. in most of Japan. Tonabnehemr is measured at 100Hz, but for the calculation we need the value at 10 Hz, which is approximately 1.4 times as large as at 100 Hz.

With 10,25 gr cartridge weight, effective tonearm mass of 10 gr. and a CU of 10 the resonance frequency will be at round about 10,79 Hz

Whith CU changing to 14 the resonance frequency would be at round about 9,12 Hz what fits even better than 10,79 Hz.

Just for comaprism: Dynavector XX2 - 8,9 gr, CU = 10 or 14 - same topic with mesuring frequency here. Thus it looks quite similar on first glance but weight is different with the following effect: resonance frequency at 11,35 Hz or 9,6 Hz.

Background information: HiFi-Scene propagates resonance frequency should lay in between 8 and 12 Hz, but theory says

  1. resonance frequency should be in minimum one octave above rumple - this would let start the range at round about 7 Hz
  2. the higher resonance frequency becomes the more the sound goes into brightness and vice versa
  3. what makes 8 up to 10 Hz to be the optimum range

Furthermore the Soundsmith is a MI architecture, what´s very close to MM, consequently dealing with the same issue as MM.

Technically speaking you will recognize with MM and MI designs a phase shift of up to 180 degree that´s linked to frequency, with MC designs this shift is always only a few degrees or millidegrees. This means that the so-called group delay of a signal in the MC system is coherent and no shift occurs between two signals that belong to the same cycle and have different frequencies.

Technicans call this one of the reason why MC sounds more transparent, detailed, with higher spatiality and faster.


Thanks @Don_Camillo for a very detailed answer. Although I first was kind of interested in the Soundsmith cartridge as an option I now might need to look other alternatives.

@osprey, the XX-2 Mk2 is not available as it is just about to be replaced by XX-2A. So if you just wait a while, that will seem to solve the issue.