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12-23-2006, 04:21 PM
I have recently come to own an AR Turntable-ARXE.
It is in good working order although I plan on getting new belts.
I am only getting sound out of one of my two speaker though.
The rest of the system is brand new and I am assuming that
I need to replace the stylus..?
Inside the cartridge head that holds the stylus (Excuse me if the terms are off-
I am new to this-I see 'Empire MK IV'.
I have searched on needle doctor and can't find a match.
Any thoughts?

12-23-2006, 05:06 PM
A worn stylus will not short out a channel. Sounds more like you got a wiring problem. Either one of the pins going to the cartridge is not connecting properly, or there's bad wiring connecting the turntable to the preamp. Unfortunately, turntable repairs are not cheap.

As far as Empire goes, you can do a lot better. Most Empire cartridges were more for low end mass market turntables. Keep in mind though that good cartridges will typically run you more than $100. Below that price point, you got a lot of models that absolutely cannot do justice to the vinyl format. If you need to keep your expenditures low, you can always e-mail the Needle Doctor with your specs and see which replacement stylus will fit that cartridge.

12-23-2006, 05:09 PM
It's probably more than just the stylus.

I would first try to reverse the left and right connections from the turntable to see if the working channel changes sides on your system. If not, the turntable isn't to blame. If so, I would suspect a bad cartridge or dirty / broken connections to the cartridge pins, bad tonearm wires, or a bad interconnect or plug.

Testing the turntable is very easy with a multi-tester. Set it to test for resistance (continuity). The red tonearm wire should make a solid connection to the inner pin on the right interconnect. Green... outer contact right. White... inner pin left. Blue... outer contact left. Once you find the open circuit, you could access where the tonearm wires connect to the interconnects inside the table and test between that point and the appropriate interconnect plug... or that point and the appropriate cartridge pin connector to see exactly where the problem is. If all the tonearm wires seem to be making a good conection to their appropriate plug contact at the end of the interconnects... I would suspect a faulty cartridge.

12-23-2006, 05:17 PM
A hundred dollars would not be a problem if it comes down to it.
I am a little confused on the testing of the wiring. Is that in the cartridge head?
Do I need a special tool?

If It is a new cartridghe head that I need is there a suggestion or should I call up needle doctor and tell them what I own.

I actually just noticed that Empire Cartridge wires (those 4 colors that you mentioned) can be easily slipped on and off.
Is the cartridge what I would be replacing or the whole head of the arm?

12-23-2006, 05:34 PM
The headshell is what the cartridge is attached to.

The tonearm wires connect to the pins on the back of the cartridge using tiny slide-on connectors. You could simply touch one of the pins and the appropriate contact on the RCA plug at the end of the interconnect cable with your (or a friend's) multi-tester probes to check for continuity. No need to remove the connectors from the cartridge pins. The tiny connectors connection to the tonearm wires can be delicate. Take great care when removing or plugging them into a cartridge.

Try reversing the left and right plugs from your turntable first to see if the turntable's to blame or something else. If the same channel sounds, both left and right outputs are working from the turntable. If the other channel sounds, you are indeed not getting output from one channel of the turntable. Probably bad wiring, connection, or cartridge.

Just the cartridge is what you would be replacing, assuming the problem isn't in the turntable wiring or connectors. You could try cleaning the slide-on connectors to the cartridge with contact cleaner or alcohol. The most likely places for a bad connection would be a broken solder joint right at the slide-on connectors to the cartridge pins. Or a bad connection at the RCA plugs that plug into your preamp. Cartridge could be bad, but you couldn't be sure without testing the turntable wiring or trying the cartridge on another turntable.

12-24-2006, 03:01 AM
maybe the wiring is broken, or something else, anyways, here's a link that might help you...

12-24-2006, 06:40 AM
Well no matter what the cause, I have to replace the who cartridge anyway.
2 of the wires have disattached from the pins. Are the pins part of the cartiridge when you replace of would I have to resolder anyway?

This kind of thin is rather foreign to me. I don't have a multi-tester and doubt if I know anybody who would.

Thanks...and happy holidays all

12-24-2006, 10:32 AM
The pins are part of the cartridge. The tiny slide-on connectors attached (or unattached) to the wires are a different story. I see in that link that your table has some kind of removable headshell. No pics of the underside / wiring though. Can't tell you exactly what you'll have to do. Some removeable headshells use short headshell leads with connectors on both ends that run between the cartridge and connectors at the rear of the headshell. These can be easily replaced. If the headshell leads are soldered to the headshell connector, you'd have to solder the slide-on connectors for the cartridge back on or solder new ones on. Pretty hard job. Without a very small soldering iron especially for the job and some very thin solder it's even harder. The connectors easily become plugged with solder and the plastic insulation on the tiny wires will melt badly if you're not real quick. Most places that sell new tonearm wire sell Teflon insulated wire. The Teflon won't melt while soldering the wires. Makes things a little easier. Some very small heat shrink tubing can be slipped on the wires before soldering to cover any excessive exposed wire when you're done.

You've probably found your problem if those connections are bad. Also, cleaning the contacts for the removeable headshell with contact cleaner would be advised.

If the headshell leads are soldered to the headshell, you could probably just send the headshell to someone who repairs turntables and have some cartridge connectors soldered on.

You may not have to replace the cartridge at all... Sounds like bad wiring to me... I'm sure one of the stylus dealers on the web could help you find the stylus you need.

Good luck... Sorry your having problems with your "new" table. Happy Holidays!!!

12-25-2006, 06:44 AM
I think that my plan at this point is up upgrade the cartridge and stylus but I have no way of soldering the leads at home.
Does anyone out there know of a good source for repair in New Yrk City area that I can walk the headshell into?
Or a trusthworthy place in another that it can be mailed to?


12-25-2006, 09:54 AM
Sorry... Don't know of a shop. There are a few listed on Google. None in NYC...

Sure you don't just need these?

The headshell leads are soldered to the headshell connector?

If you just need headshell leads, I could send you a set. It is possible yours are soldered in though... Let me know...

There are two different types of leads I've seen. One has the same sized connectors on both ends. The other has slightly smaller connectors on one end to fit pins at the headshell connector that are slightly smaller than the cartridge pins. I have extra sets of both...

I'd offer to solder it if need be... But, I'm an amateur. My success rate is pretty good with most repairs, but not perfect. Those headshells are probably getting hard to come by... Wouldn't want to take the chance...

12-25-2006, 01:22 PM
WOW. That is exactly what I need. Connectors are the same on both ends and slip on and off the pins. Thanks so much for the offer to try and solder, but I plan on purchasing an updated catridge/stylus anyway. I would guess thet the needle is about 30 years old-the cartridge may be the original. I have an email into Needle Doctor for suggestions for replacement.
Will try Turntable Needles as well.

12-25-2006, 06:24 PM
Would be no trouble at all to send you a set of headshell leads if you want. Just send your address in a private message or e-mail

You should probably make sure the connectors are really the same size at both ends by unplugging one and trying to put it on the opposite way to see if the one at the other end fits the headshell connector pin tightly. The headshell leads with slightly smaller connectors at one end seem more common on older tables.

Glad the problem looks to be easily solved. Although, I guess you could still have wiring problems elsewhere... It would be rare for a cartridge to ever go "bad". The magnet and moving parts are all part of the stylus assembly. A newer cartridge isn't necessarily better.

Be careful with that headshell. I tried to find some info on them in order to help. It seems they tend to break or "strip" a plastic part if you try to attach the headshell to the tonearm too tightly.

Did you put in a new belt yet? Would probably be a good idea for speed stability, along with lubing the center bearing. Adding a few drops of household oil is better than nothing. Cleaning it out and filling it with synthetic 30 weight oil, even better. Your turntable is popular enough that you should easily be able to find the right belt from anyone who sells them. Clean the motor pulley and platter pulley with alcohol before installing the new belt. Could use a Magic Eraser with the alcohol if they look like they could use it.

Good luck!!!

12-27-2006, 02:45 PM
Thanks for everyone's input and the offer Royphil.
I contacted Needle Doctor today and they have a replacement stylus for my cartridge.
The sales person confirmed that ther cartriges rarely go bad. I have also ordered a couple of sets of lead wires and a belt. So I hopefully have everything I need on the way to me soon for a functioning turntable.
I'll check back in if there are further questions.

12-27-2006, 10:20 PM
Great!!! :)

Hope it all works out. Let us know how it sounds.