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Lyra Kleos or Kleos SL into Devialet
Hi all, I'm looking for some help on a new cartridge.

I'm thinking of upgrading my Linn Krystal cartridge which I run in an Aro arm on an LP12 Radikal tuntable with a Keel/A subchassis. The other key components are my Devialet 1000 Pro and Sonus Faber Amati Futura speakers.

I'm thinking of a Lyra Kleos, or Kleos SL, or possibly the Linn Kandid. I already have some degree of 'hiss' with my Linn Krystal and have concerns about the low output of the Kleos SL. Is anybody running a Kleos SL into the Devialet phono stage, and what has been your experience?

Any other cartridge suggests in the Kleos SL/Kandid price range would be welcome.

Many thanks for any help, NickW
My experience has been the lower the output the higher the risk of hiss. With very low output coils, you should look into a transformer and running the Devialet configured for MM. That’s what I have done on an Apheta, Dynavector and now a Hana, and it’s hiss-free using the step-up.
Pink Triangle Anniversary/SME IV/Hana ML ; MFA 632 Step-up; Intel NUC + Roon ROCK; Devialet 440 Pro CI; PMC 25.26; Chord cabling
Dublin, Ireland
I agree to wiresandmore
Go for a low-output cartridge into a transformer an the MM-Stage of the Devialet

Atb, Tom
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Thank you for your advice Wiresandmore and tom539.
Just wondering if anyone can recommend any particular step-up transformers that might suit? Would you advise me to purchase an already built unit or put something together for myself? I have been looking at the range of transformers from Lundahl, and am adequately experienced in electronics construction.
Many thanks for any help, NickW
I use a Music First Audio 632 and it’s great and relatively affordable. I know they are not complex things and if you source suitable transformers it would be an easy self-build.

Most MC manufacturers do make their own - Lyra have one - but they are expensive. They do occasionally come up used so worth trying hifishark or similar.
Pink Triangle Anniversary/SME IV/Hana ML ; MFA 632 Step-up; Intel NUC + Roon ROCK; Devialet 440 Pro CI; PMC 25.26; Chord cabling
Dublin, Ireland
Looking at the specifications of the cartridges that you are considering, the Lyra Kleos has an output of 0.5mV, which should be fine with the Devialet. Not 100% hiss free if you turn up the volume with nothing playing, but in practical terms it should be good.

The other options are all significantly lower output, so possibly best avoided unless you want to go the step-up transformer route that others have mentioned.

EDIT: I note that the Linn Krystal has an output of 0.25mV. So as a question, how do you find that with respect to the dreaded hiss? I used to run an Ortofon Cadenza Black, which I thought was just about OK with respect to hiss levels, it certainly sounded good, and that is .33mV output.

Not that I would personally recommend the Cadenza Black though:
1000 Pro - KEF Blade - SOtM sMS-200Ultra Neo - tX-USBultra - Mutec REF10 - MC3+USB - Pro-Ject Signature 12
I thought the OP was looking at the very low output one (the Kleos SL)? If you are going for the standard model with 0.5mV output that should be ok to avoid hiss I expect. I have just got the Hana ML in my system, replacing an Apheta2 and the hiss is nowhere near as noticeable. The ML is 0.4mV and the Apheta2 is 0.3mV I think.
Pink Triangle Anniversary/SME IV/Hana ML ; MFA 632 Step-up; Intel NUC + Roon ROCK; Devialet 440 Pro CI; PMC 25.26; Chord cabling
Dublin, Ireland
Hi Nick,

I‘m listening with the Linn Kandid directly connected to the 250 pro. No issues at all. Settings taken from the Lyra Kleos SL, sensitivity 0.250mV. Works. 
In addition I used Silvercore stepup transformers, setting here changed to MM with 8mV and high impedance. Works also. Sometimes transformer was found better, sometimes direct.
Rest: SunWire Phono Refererence, VIV Rigid Float 9“, Garrard 401 w. precision bearing.

Regards, Bernhard
Thank you all for your replies.

Just by way of an update: After auditioning a few cartridges at Cymbiosis in Leicester, I have now upgraded my Linn Krystal to a Lyra Kleos SL; and I'm absolutely delighted with it. Wow!

@Confused, the hiss from the Kleos SL is indeed very similar to that from my Krystal. My mistake; I had been under the assumption that the Krystal was a higher output device. In fact, I had been running my Devialet with the phono input sensitivity set to 0.5mV rather than 0.25mV which should have been a much better match. However, and after playing with the Devialet's 'on-the-fly' RAM adgustable cartridge settings, I find that changing from 0.5mV to 0.25mV only means that I need less overall volume for the same perceived sound level. Like for like, the hiss level is indistinguishably similar using either 0.5mV or 0.25mV. This suggests I've found or reached the overall noise floor of the Devialet's MC phono input.

The overall hiss level is not too bad, and only really noticable between tracks and at 'higher' listening levels, or if I get close up to one of my loudspeaker's tweaters. However, I am now intrigued as to whether an MC stepup transformer might increase the overall signal-to-noise available from the Devialet phono stage. Everything I'm reading suggests it would, but then finding the right stepup transformer is a whole new question.

Thank you Wiresandmore and Vin for your suggestions. It certaily looks like there are some reassuringly expensive stepup transformers out there. More research required, but any other suggestions welcome, and especially from anyone using a Lyra Kleos SL through stepups.

Thanks again, NickW
The hiss issue is interesting and has driven me mad in the past! However, in my experience care needs to be taken that you do not degrade fidelity in the quest to banish hiss..... i.e. do not throw the baby out with the bathwater!

The following is my experience posted on an earlier thread (sorry I can't seem to work out how to link to the original post)   


Couple of things I found:

1. Earthing/Ground loop hum. Even with the ground wire from phono leads attached to the Devialet my system still has a lot of noise - pops, clicks, buzz's etc - in addition to the background hiss. I noticed that when I had a hand on my equipment stand (metal) and touched the deck or the tonearm the pops and clicks disappeared. I now have a small ground wire attached by blutack running from the tonearm (near the lift) to the stand. All I hear now is the background hiss.

2. I've not posted on this but I feel some of you may be getting too obsessed with the 'hiss'. I've got two MC cartridges - a Koetsu SkyBlue and a Benz LPS - I run both at 0.35mV. Yes the onboard phono stage is noisy with no signal, but as soon as I hear music the hiss is gone. This is actually quieter than a number of valve preamps I've had in the past - the Audio Research LS2b was like a rainstorm!
Anyway, after I first got the D-Premier I too became obsessed with the hiss and tried out two step-ups - the EAR Yoshino MC4 and an Orfeton (had a big can on top??). Both were great and no hiss so I bought the MC4 (looked better!). After a few months I was conscious that I was a bit restless listening to LPs - turning the volume up and down, changing tracks and LPs. So I took the MC4 out of the system and went back to the onboard Dev Phono stage. Instantly the hiss was back, but as soon as I dropped the needle Bam! dynamics and midrange. Tried to go back the MC4 but it sounded slightly recessed in energy and a bit 'silvery' or lighter in mid - processed perhaps. No way I could go back to a SUT. I mean is it really possible to take a 0.35mV signal and put it through a lump of passive electronics and then another cable and not expect to lose something?? Anyway, that's where chasing that damn hiss took me!
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