Behold the Treehouse System !

A nicer profile gemstone on a Denon 103 sure seems to help that cart along nicely. I’d go with a 103LC/II or V103R with a re-tip… if going that route.

I have a 103D (factory elliptical) but it’s more compliant than what you need.
 
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I have a Denon DL-103 LCII (Special Edition, 1986 I believe) that I had an aluminum cantilever and HE stylus put on by VAS. That said, I would be willing to sell possibly. The LC II had special windings and was more like the DL-103R.
That was a cart I had picked up (possibly new old stock) but it wasn’t a good match for my lower than desired mass arm. It’s very akin to the 103R, I forget the exact details, but not vastly different.
 

MWalt

Active Member
Here are the specs to the afore mentioned LC II:

To commemorate the 75 anniversary of the release of the limited edition pickup. 103 series upgrade again, using a hot topic over the purity of the material LC-OFC (no Sanso copper) as a conductor, to further suppress the loss of playback signal. Impedance is reduced to 13 in Europe, higher sensitivity, more dynamic, far more than the 103R.



DL-103LCII

• Output voltage: 0.25 mv

• Frequency response: 20 Hz to 45 kHz

• Impedance: 13 ohms

• load resistance and more than 100 ohms (resistive load)

• Pen Shape: conical or round needles

• Pen pressure: 2.5 ± 0.3 g

• Compliance: 5 × 10 - 6 cm / dyne

• Weight: 8.5 g

Specifications LC II is very similar to the recent dl - 103 - r and dl - 103 - sa
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
So some comments after living with this setup for a bit...

The Leben isn't a great match for the Epi M50s. So I'm going to drag my Luxman L507uxii over and see what the potential is with these speakers if given more power. The highs sound nice enough with the Leben (if a slight-bit harsh in that 40-year-old-stock-speaker-with-old-crossover way) but the midrange on down is a bit hollowed out. To get any bass on them, I have to turn the 2-level bass boost on the amp up ...2 levels. 15 wpc is, unsurprisingly, not the best match for a small sealed 2-way. The Leben and Luxman sound oddly similar for being so different (there is a family tree connection going back between the two companies, though). So, we'll see.

The Dynacos sound more full. Imaging is less holographic/distinct. Bass isn't as tight but its more 'there'. I'm looking for shorter stands for them, and they may stay in the setup. I will also try them with the Luxman.

Despite the compliance mismatch between the arm and cart, it tracks well and overall isn't bad. I'm a bit spoiled by my main turntable arm/cart- they love each other. In fact I think they're married.

Next up is getting some sort of digital source in here- its hard to judge too many things when I'm not sure how well the many variables in my analog setup are getting along. This usually isn't a problem but the Empire is so outside of 'normal' for me in terms of its arm, that I'm not quit sure what I'm dealing with... as I've not had this cart on anything else, and really don't feel like disturbing my dialed-inn main setup to get a benchmark for it.

I'm thinking now that instead of modifying the M50s, I'd rather put money towards the SEAS A26 kit (the sort of modern A25).
 

fiddlefye

Senior Member
So some comments after living with this setup for a bit...

The Leben isn't a great match for the Epi M50s. So I'm going to drag my Luxman L507uxii over and see what the potential is with these speakers if given more power. The highs sound nice enough with the Leben (if a slight-bit harsh in that 40-year-old-stock-speaker-with-old-crossover way) but the midrange on down is a bit hollowed out. To get any bass on them, I have to turn the 2-level bass boost on the amp up ...2 levels. 15 wpc is, unsurprisingly, not the best match for a small sealed 2-way. The Leben and Luxman sound oddly similar for being so different (there is a family tree connection going back between the two companies, though). So, we'll see.

The Dynacos sound more full. Imaging is less holographic/distinct. Bass isn't as tight but its more 'there'. I'm looking for shorter stands for them, and they may stay in the setup. I will also try them with the Luxman.

Despite the compliance mismatch between the arm and cart, it tracks well and overall isn't bad. I'm a bit spoiled by my main turntable arm/cart- they love each other. In fact I think they're married.

Next up is getting some sort of digital source in here- its hard to judge too many things when I'm not sure how well the many variables in my analog setup are getting along. This usually isn't a problem but the Empire is so outside of 'normal' for me in terms of its arm, that I'm not quit sure what I'm dealing with... as I've not had this cart on anything else, and really don't feel like disturbing my dialed-inn main setup to get a benchmark for it.

I'm thinking now that instead of modifying the M50s, I'd rather put money towards the SEAS A26 kit (the sort of modern A25).
I'll be interested in how the M50s respond to the Luxman. Mine always had astounding bass for their size, more "apparent" than some much bigger speakers I've run. I never got as low as 15 w/ch, but ever 25 was plenty to get them revved up without pushing things.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
I'll be interested in how the M50s respond to the Luxman. Mine always had astounding bass for their size, more "apparent" than some much bigger speakers I've run. I never got as low as 15 w/ch, but ever 25 was plenty to get them revved up without pushing things.
I had another EL84 integrated tube amp, an Eico 2036, that for whatever reason was always more easy to match with speakers than the Leben despite a similar power rating. The Leben was the better sounding of the two, or at least more neutral, but the Eico would play subjectively louder/more fully. It was also more syrappy, stereotypically tubey- for better or worse. It was a sleeper of an amp... but a bit of an ugly duckling, unlike the Leben. I prefer the Leben's sound when its getting along with speakers, but its not at all a versatile amp if you're fighting its urge for highly efficient speakers.
 

MWalt

Active Member
I will be curious to hear your impression of the A26's. I had to sell my Dynaco A-25's when I did the pre move audio gear purge prior to moving from Ohio to Chattanooga last year. I am still kicking myself over that one. I went in and upgraded the cap, resistors, wiring and binding posts. They sounded really good with about anything I threw at them.
 

Thermionics

Post Whore In Training
I had another EL84 integrated tube amp, an Eico 2036, that for whatever reason was always more easy to match with speakers than the Leben despite a similar power rating. The Leben was the better sounding of the two, or at least more neutral, but the Eico would play subjectively louder/more fully. It was also more syrappy, stereotypically tubey- for better or worse. It was a sleeper of an amp... but a bit of an ugly duckling, unlike the Leben. I prefer the Leben's sound when its getting along with speakers, but its not at all a versatile amp if you're fighting its urge for highly efficient speakers.
The Eico used a pair of 7247s for the driver/phase splitters, didn't it? It has been my experience that 7247-driven EL84 PP amps behave better than 12AX7-driven EL84 PP amps. Don't ask me why.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
This looks ungainly and crowded but sounds better, while also freeing up the ifi iphono for Stereo ‘79. Hmmm. Not sure I can squeeze the Luxman in the cabinet. It’s huge.
C40373A0-921D-46C2-9ADA-671E26786B88.jpeg
 

JoeThePop

Known member
This looks ungainly and crowded but sounds better, while also freeing up the ifi iphono for Stereo ‘79. Hmmm. Not sure I can squeeze the Luxman in the cabinet. It’s huge.
View attachment 40813
It's a nice piece but I much prefer looking at the Leben. As I am living vicariously through your system building here, I'm voting that you keep the Leben and find some speakers that match well with it. That would make me happy.
 

adaug

Awaiting Updated Member Status.
This looks ungainly and crowded but sounds better, while also freeing up the ifi iphono for Stereo ‘79. Hmmm. Not sure I can squeeze the Luxman in the cabinet. It’s huge.
View attachment 40813to me, the amp and turntable look good up there together with the lamp. the small squarish speakers tho dont have a "classic" look there.
 

JohnVF

Administrator
Staff member
If all I listen to is this album, the Leben/Dynaco combo is sublime.

I agree that the Leben needs to be a part of this. I want a tube system in this room. The A25s work better with it. They look the part, too, though I think I need shorter stands. More for looks than anything.


47FF0B8F-F575-45E4-A496-8EF5B430EB7F.jpeg
 

JoeThePop

Known member
If all I listen to is this album, the Leben/Dynaco combo is sublime.

I agree that the Leben needs to be a part of this. I want a tube system in this room. The A25s work better with it. They look the part, too, though I think I need shorter stands. More for looks than anything.


View attachment 40816
Agree with the shorter stands. Top of the speakers in line with the top of the turntable would be perfect. In my vicarious opinion.
 
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