Using wave corrector for setting SRA (stylus rake angle)

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Using wave corrector for setting SRA (stylus rake angle)

Postby perkypops » Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:23 pm

Hi guys, first post, and let me say straight away, wave corrector (WC) is just superb.

Stylus rake angle (SRA) is a complex piece of geometry which can only be changed either via fitting shims between tonearm and cartridge (almost impossible to do accurately) or via setting VTA by raising or lowering the tonearm (just as impossible to get absolutely right given the minute angle changes required - there are some really interesting articles on the web and I tend towards the opinion accurate VTA is a myth). SRA does at least have a wider band of tolerance than VTA and so it is much easier to hit the sweet spot as it were. Just set the tonearm to an approximate height parallel with a record surface and check the recording sample width. Now raise or lower the arm by a given amount - I use thin pieces of cardboard one on top of another and cut to the shape of the tonearm pillar to set the height. I have cardboard of both 0.8mm and 0.3mm thicknesses ( I have used paper as well for minor changes but I cannot ever tell the difference!) and use a wood template to set the base height (5mm) for my tonearm which also helps to ensure the arm is level in all plans. Add or remove pieces of cardboard to change the height and check the sample width each time. Start with thick cardboard up or down changes and then work with thinner pieces as the sound changes and homes in on the SRA. Once you are near the correct SRA the slices in the wave file sample width will narrow and appear a much sharper shaped as if its resolution has changed. Where there was one sample you may now have two or more in the same time interval. Its up to you how far you go but, as I said, SRA is much more forgiving than VTA.

I came across this by accident and first thought I'd reset a WC default by mistake but I replicated the problem using another arm/cartridge combo and so it must be doing something because the sound is definitely improved and better post setting. Just ensure vertical tonearm bearings are as tight as they are supposed to be otherwise this trick will not appear to work. I'd also add that my cartridge uses a nude eliptical stylus where the diamond edges are supposed to track the groove at the correct SRA. Please note stylus manufacturers allow quite a tolerance for SRA because of differences between same cartridge samples. I am not sure you can do this with a spherical stylus and I haven't got a suitable cartridge to check it with, but I'd be interested to know if it gives the same changes.

Thanks for reading.
Posts: 1
Joined: Tue Apr 07, 2015 6:41 pm

Re: Using wave corrector for setting SRA (stylus rake angle)

Postby knighte » Tue May 19, 2015 1:48 am

Hello everyone, This is very interesting and something I didn't realize could make a difference in sound quality. The variables in the mechanics of a turntable are difficult to adjust. Wave Corrector gives us the opportunity to experiment with various adjustments. Make a change and see if there really is a difference. I used this same method several years ago to get the anti-skate spot on. Not only did the sound improve, but the noise detector was able to do a better job. I was unaware of the SRA and it's effect on the music. Thanks for another way to improve the sound.

Ashby, MN
Posts: 16
Joined: Sun Oct 30, 2005 12:09 pm

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