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Stylus Wear evaluation: "Cat's eye" method

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BDWoody

BDWoody

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Thread Starter #22
Right, but aside from there being light refraction you can't really see anything.

New and worn out elliptical at 200x on a SEK-2:

View attachment 105121
View attachment 105122
So...yeah. I should probably just stop thinking this is going to be of any value.

Time to send them to someone who isn't going to be guessing.

Thanks for the help!
 

Helicopter

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#24
That looks like serious business.
The two things I run into trouble with using a digital microscope are the difficulty in getting the object into focus, and the difficulty in positioning the scope when the objective is in situ. You can’t always get a good viewing angle and viewing distance when the cartridge is mounted to the tonearm. And VERY fine movements can send the object out of focus or out of the field of view. You have to solve those problems before you can develop an efficient work flow.
Just opened this up this morning, so I am not an expert, but I find a little finger pressure on the base works for the last fine focus when capturing the image. I can capture video with mine too, so that is what I would use if I wanted to go through the stack of focus options.
 

Helicopter

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#26
The first image is a Tonar 6097-DE replacement for a Shure White Label with almost zero wear; maybe 4 sides.
Other than just being fun to look at, what decisions do y'all plan to make based on these pics?
As of this morning, not buying so many replacement styli.

Here is the original stylus from the White Label:

0110-35.jpg
 

Helicopter

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#27
Other than just being fun to look at, what decisions do y'all plan to make based on these pics?
Probably going to throw the carbon fiber brush in my box of LP gear and use a magic eraser almost exclusively now. It works 1000x better on little fibers and fuzz.
 

watchnerd

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#30
Probably going to throw the carbon fiber brush in my box of LP gear and use a magic eraser almost exclusively now. It works 1000x better on little fibers and fuzz.
I use one of these Onzow Zero Dust sticky things. I think it works similarly to the Magic Eraser. I haven't used a brush in years.

 

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#31
I think it was Shure that used to advise viewing viewing from the front to detect any dimples worn into the profile of the stylus. I'll try to provide a photo of that later.

If anyone wishes to get a lot fancier, Amscope has some moderately priced solutions, and a stereo inspection microscope with trinocular head equipped with USB camera would be the ticket, but don't go overboard with the magnification as we're not looking at cells, but a relatively huge stylus, and the greater the magnification, the shallower the depth of field is going to be.
 
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Thread Starter #32
Other than just being fun to look at, what decisions do y'all plan to make based on these pics?
That I need to send mine to someone who has a clue.
 

JeffS7444

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#33
Have you gents tried taking multiple shots to stack the focus?
Not a bad idea, but with my setup, it's difficult to precisely focus at higher magnifications, and impossible to do so without causing everything else to shift.
 
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Thread Starter #36
Ah, the perils of vintage cart ownership.

I exchanged my AT ART7 for an ART9XA via AT's exchange program -- got 50% off trade in credit, no questions asked.
Since the selection of new T4P cartridges is quite limited, I'm hoping to keep my handful of decent ones in good condition. Since both the 310MC and 205CMK3 are considered worth keeping, I really should just get them both retipped and not have to think about it for a while.

For the Kenwood, the VM540 is the best cartridge I have. Since I have very little self control, I am now looking into what would be a nice MC that I can settle into for that table.
 

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