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Old 8th Feb 2019, 12:27 pm   #1
Ekcoman
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Default Ronette Cartridge Identity

I wonder if anyone could identify this cartridge? It is, I think, a Ronette ?as "Made in Holland" on top of metal holder plate. I wonder if a High or Medium output? Reason being suitability for a BUSH SRP31. Thanks
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Old 8th Feb 2019, 1:47 pm   #2
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

Well it's definitely strictly mono only, so won't be usable with stereo records without spoiling them.
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Old 8th Feb 2019, 3:51 pm   #3
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

That looks a lot like a Ronette stylus to me - so, almost certainly yes. I think it's a crystal cartridge - so, if there is any output (!) it might be a bit high. Start with the volume low.
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Old 8th Feb 2019, 5:42 pm   #4
Edward Huggins
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

This is an early original Ronette crystal cartridge.
If it is working, and if it is the high-output version, it will be worth its weight in gold! However, the high-output version will not really be suitable for the Bush SRP31.
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Old 8th Feb 2019, 10:48 pm   #5
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

Thanks for replies and judging by your responses this looks to be a High Output so will opt for a Ronette 105 which if I recall is a medium output. Only issue now is remembering how to link up the 4 pin ends into two pairs.
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Old 9th Feb 2019, 2:03 pm   #6
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

A DC400?
https://www.google.com/search?biw=14...30.ChuyTwpnAhA
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Old 9th Feb 2019, 4:40 pm   #7
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

Bear in mind what Techman says - it is strictly mono only. A repro stereo version 105 is available. It sounds ok but looks rather crude compared to the original. With a bit of care the body of a new cartridge will fit into the carrier of the old one which makes it look a lot better and allows it to fit better into arms that use a single screw fixing. Even if the cartridge does not work it is worth keeping it for that reason.

If you are using the repro 105 the pins for each channel are diagonally opposed. Not the first way you would try connecting itif you did not know!
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 8:37 am   #8
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

Quote:
If you are using the repro 105 the pins for each channel are diagonally opposed. Not the first way you would try connecting itif you did not know!
Thanks Paul for refreshing my memory on the pin connection. Have an original 105 so will install. Have heard on this site that the repro version is a bit disappointing.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 10:41 am   #9
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

I have found the repro one to be ok. It needs 5g or so tracking weight but sounds fine. I bought a Goldring NOS one a while ago and the repro is better than that, possibly because the NOS one had deteriorated. It came from South Africa so I doubt that damp would have been a problem.

You need to do some modifications to the repro one to fit it into the original holder but it is worth it as it looks much better. In particular the selector knob on the repro is very crudely made. If you want to go down that route I can post the modifications needed.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 11:29 am   #10
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

The "newly" manufactured Ronette reproduction versions were made in Italy around 10 years ago. The first release was crystal and then ceramic ("ceramica"). In my opinion these sound thinner than the original Dutch made Collaro/Ronettes from the mid 1950s onwards. These were some of the finest crystal type ever made and have proven to be resilient and long lasting.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 2:46 pm   #11
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

It might have been me defaming the Italian repro - I didn't like it. But that's not to say it won't suit a different RP.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 3:17 pm   #12
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

I would be interested to know the history of the Ronette cartridges. The one I bought was in a Goldring/Ronette box. Will this actually be one of the Dutch ones?
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 4:29 pm   #13
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

Decca (or more likely Garrard, on their behalf) made a headshell specially for the Ronette crystal stereo cartridge. Pretty, isn't it? Sounds nice too.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 4:29 pm   #14
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ekcoman View Post
Have heard on this site that the repro version is a bit disappointing.
I'm going to have to be brutally honest about these repro Ronette cartridges. I was nearly going to say they're total junk and should go straight in the nearest bin, but perhaps that's too 'brutal'. A few years ago I repaired a record player for someone and they also wanted a new stereo compatible cartridge fitting in place of an old Garrard GC8. They ordered and supplied the replacement cartridge for me to fit and it was one of these 105 copies. I didn't know how bad these were at the time and under the same circumstances now, I would never recommend anyone to buy or fit one. They may have the necessary technology to pick out the two channels and feed them to a stereo amplifier but they have the same lack of vertical compliance as the original mono only versions. On a heavily modulated test single it jumped on heavy bass and sounded worse than the old GC8 it replaced. You only have to look at the construction to note that the 'all-in-one' metal stylus arm is the same as the old mono version, so far as I can tell, anyway.

It all depends on how you value your records. It is a debatable subject as regards to exactly how much damage is done to a stereo record by playing it with a non-compatible cartridge, and how many times you'd have to play it with one before the damage would be audible on a basic standard recordplayer. A hi-fi enthusiast with a good quality system and finely tuned ears would probably be able to detect the damage after the record was played just the once with a non-compliant cartridge. The other point to note is that if you have a collection of records bought second hand from auctions and boot sales, then you wouldn't know what these records have previously been played on, and you may just accept the obvious crackle and distortion as just being an old worn record, rather than the fact it was played in the past on an old record player with a non-stereo compatible cartridge. It's really up to the individual, if you've got mint and valuable records, then these should really be played on a quality hi-fi system and NOT a standard recordplayer. If you've just got a stack of random well used and well played old records that you're not too worried about, then just get on and play them and enjoy them and don't worry too much about cartridges, compliance, and tracking weight etc. - the choice is yours at the end of the day.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 5:20 pm   #15
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

The NOS stereo Ronette I bought has the identical stylus to the repro one.

I think that Techman makes a good point. These were never high compliance hi-fi cartridges and will have chewed up records when new. The technology is 60 years old or so and we should expect that sort of performance from them. If you want to get an old record player going again and looking original, that is fine but don't expect too much from them and don't play any LP you value on them.

My wife had/has a nice Marconi record player from the early 70s (I say has because it is still in our loft) It has a ceramic cartridge from the era which will have higher compliance than a turnover cartridge like the Ronette but you can still hear the wear when the records are played on proper hi-fi. By contrast my records of the same age which have always been played using a magnetic cartridge have no perceptible wear at all.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 5:30 pm   #16
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

There seems to be mixed reviews on the Ronette reproduction, I bought one about 18 months ago and I found it to be absolutely useless you could see the grooves changing shade as the stylus chewed it's way through the vinyl.
I haven't bothered to by another.
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Old 10th Feb 2019, 11:30 pm   #17
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

I have bought two of these Ronette copy cartridges over the last few years, one stereo and the other mono.Both have been absolutely useless. I thought the first one was maybe faulty, and threw it out, but then foolishly bought another. Both had virtually no compliance, and on heavily modulated records jumped badly. Definitely wouldn't recommend them.
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Old 11th Feb 2019, 10:30 am   #18
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

Quote:
Originally Posted by RojDW48 View Post
Decca (or more likely Garrard, on their behalf) made a headshell specially for the Ronette crystal stereo cartridge. Pretty, isn't it? Sounds nice too.
That was the first stereo cartridge I had back in 1958 ( I think it was ).

The records which I played with it still sounded OK on vastly superior systems I acquired in subsequent years.
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Old 11th Feb 2019, 7:56 pm   #19
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

The stylus fitted to the repros is dire, when compared to an original 105 stylus it can be seen that the metal shank is made from is much thicker, and therefore stiffer, material. Also the quality of the tips is variable.
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Old 11th Feb 2019, 8:14 pm   #20
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Default Re: Ronette Cartridge Identity

The rubber block on the original 105 and BF40 cartridges were very soft and pliant, in fact too much so, as many of them have disappeared up into the body of the cartridge. This, plus the very thin shank of the original stylus made for very compliant cartridges which performed well and were highly regarded in their time. Alas, the same cannot be said of the modern copies. As Electrogram has said, the quality of the tips is also questionable. On the 105 cartridge I bought, the reproduction was so bad, I thought the 78 and LP styli had been transposed.

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