As always, if you have a question about your Galibier products, consider e-mail and telephone as your first line of support.
All of the links below are general in nature. With the exception of the first link (remote setup during COVID), they take you outside the Galibier website and the link opens in a new tab/window.
A Remote Setup We Performed During COVID
We had to get creative with social distancing requirements during COVID and performed this setup remotely. The above blog post summarizes how we accomplished this. If you’d like a copy of the 40+ page setup report sent to the customer, sign up for our mailing list (click this link for details). We've added a section on building your own azimuth measuring tool.
This is a great narrative on how a master sets up his turntable. Stay tuned for a setup video from us, but know that we’re 100% in agreement with Andre’s setup protocol.
Mint LP sets the standard in arc style cartridge alignment protractors. The Mint LP protractor is our alignment tool of choice. Contact us if you have any questions about ordering details. You’ll need to tell Yip the following:
- Your turntable brand (precision fit to your turntable’s record spindle)
- Your tonearm specifics
- Yip has our record spindle diameter on file.
While the Mint LP is the only tool you need for cartridge alignment, some users still find arc protractors to be a bit ambiguous as far as determining whether the pivot-spindle distance needs to be changed vs. the overhang. Once you’ve mastered their use, arc protractors are less ambiguous than traditional 2-point protractors, however.
Our preferred solution is to use the Feickert Protractor (to set pivot to spindle distance), and the Mint LP to establish the overhang and offset angle. Some of this is due to the fact that while performing an on-site setup at a customer location, we never know what tonearm we'll encounter, and the Feickert is universal in this regard.
We’re firm believers in arc protractors however, as being the most precise tool for the job.
We provide a printed arc protractor with every tonearm we sell. While they don’t have the same precision as the Mint Protractor, they provide a good introduction to the superiority of the tool. Our customers typically get a much more precise setup with our printed arc protractors than with the best 2-point protractor.
The Mint LP takes precision to the next level, and we’re firm believers in the Mint LP.
There are two things to consider before purchasing:
- Arc protractors are specific to the effective length of your tonearm. You’ll need one for each tonearm (or effective length).
- Tonearms with fixed mount “headshells” (e.g. Schröders and modern SME’s) are a bit tricky due to manufacturers specifying different stylus offsets. In these tonearms, a Koetsu will have a different effective length than (for example) a Lyra. This can be taken into account, however (contact us for details).
Contact us if you have any questions.
Two Point Protractor by Turntable Basics
Purveyors of a reasonably priced cartridge alignment protractor. This is the best of the currently available two point protractors we’ve found. Order the standard spindle hole size (.282) version for Galibier turntables.
Turntable Restoration and Customization
Bill Schmitz for restoration of vintage direct drive turntables from the 70’s, along with other vintage analog restorations: firstname.lastname@example.org
Custom bases for Garrards, Technics, etc. by Lee at Acoustand in the UK
We've also had excellent results with Shaun at SMD Acoustics/Peak HiFi (also in the UK). Shaun fabricated the base for this Garrard 301 restoration.
Please know, that unless the stars align perfectly, a rebuild/retip from any of these fine artisans is no guarantee of reproducing the exact sound of your prized cartridge. Too many variables are involved in tuning the response of a cartridge, which is why they all have their unique voice.
A few critical components in the sonic equation (from a “repair/rebuild” perspective) include, but are not limited to:
- Cantilever material and design
- Stylus profile, finish quality, and method used to mount to the cantilever
- Suspension tuning and damping strategy
No matter how capable and reputable a retipper is, they cannot possibly source identical materials for all cartridges entering their shop. The skilled rebuilder will get you close, however, and with your input, you may be able to customize your cartridge to better suit your listening preferences.
They will get you back up and running for a fraction of the price of a factory rebuild, and if the stars align, you may prefer their work over the original.
With those caveats, below are a few cartridge services who have garnered excellent feedback over the years.
Please note that you are on your own if you choose any of these craftsmen. We have not seen any of their work in quite some time, so do your research!
- Andy Kim’s Phono Cartridge Repair and Retipping
- VAS – Vinyl Audio Science
- Peter Lederman at Soundsmith
- AJ Van den Hul, is another well-known standby, although we don’t know how much “outside” work he is taking on these days.
- Expert Stylus in the UK seems to have shifted their focus in recent years to vintage and mono restorations. At the time of this writing, their website link was broken.
Resources and Free Stuff
Free Strobe Disk from Sheldon Stokes (PDF download)
Free stuff from Enjoy the Music
Cartridge protractor, and a spreadsheet to calculate both Baerwald and Loefgren “B” alignment for pivoting tonearms.
An excellent source for arm and cartridge manuals