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Vinyl Asylum: Mint lp Protractor arrived today. Four 1/2 hours later.... by jdaniel@jps.net

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Mint lp Protractor arrived today. Four 1/2 hours later....

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I'm so exhausted I'm going to bed, but the pertinent details:

Customer service: Excellent, great email communications throughout the shipping process.

Packaging: Excellent, everything arrived Registered Mail, and carefully and thoughtfully packed

Instructions: Couldn't be clearer, and this is the first time I've used a protractor other than VPI's extremely easy and recommendable one. The pictures describing how to avoid Parallax error are very helpful as well.

Fit and finish of the protractor: Wow. Fit snugly over the spindle-hole without any perceptible give. The etchings on the glass are easy to see as possible and perfectly straight even under 10X magnification.

Ease of use: I won't sugar-coat: by the time I finished the alignment, (probably not taking the recommended breaks as often as I should have), I was feeling a little headachy and nauseous. I went all out, not only lining up the needle perfectly across the whole arc, but going further and centering it within the ultra-thin arc line with the aid of magnification.

Step 2 involves aligning the cantilever between the "railroad tracks" on the inner and outer null points, and it's quite hard on the eyes to focus on relationship between actual lines and their reflections, (exploiting the Parallax effect to insure a perfect sightline) and then refocus on the relationship between cantilever and actual lines.

As one can imagine...this could get frustrating really fast. It is really hard to avoid leaning on (and unfortunately disturbing) the platter which must remain stationary. I must hasten to add that I can't imagine any protractor and/or devices which would make the process easier. I was able--with everything supplied--to unquestionably get everything lined up, and then some, with magnification.

Resulting improvement in sound: The new alignment did *not* improve or smooth out "hot" strings or "blatty," unflatteringly-recorded brass, two issue which I'd hoped would be improved. The improvements were surprising in other ways. Unquestionably more separation of instruments, better airiness, more low-level details...everything was "opened up" and "fleshed out" more in each 3rd of the Lp, especially the last 3rd. The "unflappability quotient" (if that makes sense), of my cart definitely went up.

I would recommend this Protractor for two reasons, 1)definitely a marked improvement in sound as described, and 2)for all the micro-surgery hassle, I couldn't imagine anyone--if one believes in the accuracy of the protractor--second-guessing his work, once all is triple-checked and the items put away. The supplied magnification allows from some extreme accuracy, providing you'll provide patience, good and fresh vision and a steady hand.

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  Kimber Kable  

Topic - Mint lp Protractor arrived today. Four 1/2 hours later.... - jdaniel@jps.net 00:04:22 03/31/09 ( 36)