Spotheim La Luce turntable and SpJ tonearm Associated Equipment
I listened to the La Luce mostly with the vdH Grasshopper IV phono cartridge, but spent some time enjoying the Cardas Heart I found installed on the arm when it arrived, George in tow. I also auditioned the Koetsu Rosewood Signature Platinum cartridge for two weeks. (More on that little Japanese beauty in an upcoming review.)
The La Luce played alternately into the YBA Signature 6 Chassis preamplifier and the Nagra PL-P, both with their own MC transformers and with the Expressive Technologies SU-1 step-up.
Power amplifiers were the huge Boulder 2050 monoblocks, the equally massive Forsell The Statement, and the glorious, hulking VTL MB-1250 Wotans. Speakers were our JMlab Utopias on PolyCrystal spikes, augmented with a gaggle of RoomLenses and ASC Studio Traps.
Phono interconnect was the new, incredibly fine Cardas Neutral Reference, as well as my old standby XLO, still hanging out at the top of the heap after all these years—when using Expressive's SU-1, I wired it up with a second run of either cable. Line-level interconnects included TARA The One, Synergistic Research Designer's Reference, Harmonix HS-101 Harmonic Strings, and Ensemble Masterflux. Speaker cables were from the same interconnect families as above, as well as XLO's recently arrived The Limited. Power cords were mostly Synergistic Reference AC Master Couplers, and I made good use of the Ensemble's PowerPoint power extender; the many-chassis'd YBA preamp used YBA's own fine, ground-lifted power cords.
And let's not forget the LP#9 and LAST stylus treatments—essential fluids for the contemporary vinyl hound.—Jonathan Scull