Author Topic: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?  (Read 481 times)

Offline Bruce M

Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« on: November 15, 2021, 01:51:19 PM »
Hello Comrades.

A mate of mine has a neat Thorens TD160 with (he thinks) a Audio Technica 440 cartridge.

He was wondering what would be a decent upgrade to this cartridge?

Thoughts?

Thanks!

Offline fdlsys

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Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2021, 02:57:48 PM »
440 is quite decent. Real upgrade could cost a fair bit. Ortofon 2M black or bronze, pricy.

Crossgrade perhaps - at vm95ml is possibly the biggest bang for the buck.

But before he starts blowing money into cartridges... how well is his turntable set up?

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Offline johan.pretorius

Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2021, 03:49:41 PM »
But before he starts blowing money into cartridges... how well is his turntable set up?

And what tonearm is on the turntable, the TP 16?



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Offline JonnyP

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Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2021, 06:05:03 PM »
Da Tvarich

As the comrades have said - what arm is currently there? A VM95 of sorts (there are many variations) will sound good, as will many other carts of the people- depending on the arm, I’ve found Thorens TTs from the era can sing regardless of the ‘petit-bourgeois’ consideration of price.  What’s the phono stage and the rest of the chain?


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Offline IanG

Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2021, 08:22:18 AM »
Hi guys
I am Bruce's afore mentioned mate that has the Thorens, Bruce offered to start the discussion for me
The cart that I have is the AT yellow one, which I think is the 440
Tonearm is the standard TP16
The rest of my setup is
 Emotiva TA100 being used as a preamp to a Quad 405 clone powering Monitor Audio silver rx8
Hopefully you guys have some pearls of wisdom to share
Thanks
Ian

Offline IanG

Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2021, 08:24:35 AM »
One suggestion that I have had is a Sumiko Pearl cart

Offline JonnyP

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Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2021, 10:40:39 AM »
Sumiko Pearl is a good suggestion, the Hana green ones with a high output (EH?) are very nice as well but more costly.  I run an Ortofon Bronze and love it (but it was a swap deal so a new one is as Fdlsys said, rather pricey).  Think I had a Shure APC-1 on a 160 which also sounded good.  Best option is probably to decide on a price point you don’t want to go beyond then see what can be found for that.
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Offline IanG

Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2021, 01:53:13 PM »
 Thanks
In your opinion will the Pearl be a significant improvement?

Offline JonnyP

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Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2021, 03:16:33 PM »
I wouldn’t be able to say as I don’t really know that much about the current cart or what it sounds like.  What I can say is it is an upgrade over an Ortofon Red or a AT 95 standard in my opinion
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Offline Cross_over

Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2021, 10:26:53 PM »
440 is quite decent. Real upgrade could cost a fair bit. Ortofon 2M black or bronze, pricy.

Crossgrade perhaps - at vm95ml is possibly the biggest bang for the buck.

But before he starts blowing money into cartridges... how well is his turntable set up?

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+1 for the AT VM95ML
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Offline Shonver

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Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #10 on: November 17, 2021, 07:19:10 AM »
A VM95 of sorts (there are many variations) will sound good, as will many other carts of the people- depending on the arm, I’ve found Thorens TTs from the era can sing regardless of the ‘petit-bourgeois’ consideration of price.

This is so true! I was listening to a friend's old system, which was sounding good, and asked him what cartridge he had on Thorens TD164 (or TD146, whichever is the rarer). His surprise response was to remind me that it was one I had fitted years ago - Stanton 500!
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Offline stereoholic

Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #11 on: November 24, 2021, 04:22:48 PM »
One suggestion that I have had is a Sumiko Pearl cart

I have a Sumiko Pearl and could only get it to sound good on one turntable (Sony PSX70), on all the others it sounded thin and lifeless.I have no idea how it will sound on a TD-160 though,maybe others can comment.

Offline MusicMan_ZA

Re: Recommended upgrade cartridge for Thorens TD160?
« Reply #12 on: November 24, 2021, 06:02:20 PM »
I think many people will agree that the Thorens TD160 is a lovely turntable. Even a great turntable.
In my opinion, the TP16 tone arm is excellent, and not always appreciated for how good it is/can be.
(there are a few mods, e.g. removing the nylon string tracking force setting, and using purely the counterweight.)
The magnetic anti-skate works very well.
I have had a few of them, and the best (to MY ears) carts I have had on there were Shure M75ED and Shure M95ED.
If I had to buy a new cart for a well-running TD160 with a TP16 arm today, I would get the Ortofon 2M Red (as a starter) or up the line...
Just my  :2c:
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