How Do I Set VTF – Vertical Tracking Force?


As far as vertical tracking force (VTF), always start with the recommended vertical tracking force from the manufacturer for a particular make and model of cartridge. It may be possible to lower it after we have repaired or rebuilt your cartridge, but there are so many factors, including variations in tone arm design and condition, that we urge our customers to invest in a test record that will aid them in finding the correct VTF. Too low a VTF will damage both record and stylus, and too high will cause too much wear.  

The proper amount of VTF will vary from cartridge to cartridge, EVEN within a single model, due to manufacturing tolerances. One who plays loudly recorded music will need a bit more, and visa-versa.  

When you are adjusting your VTF, if you use a test record, adjust the antiskating beforehand as described below, and then fine tune the VTF to allow no audible distortion with a test record with a tone recorded at 12dB over 0 dB modulation.  

Refers to


Paua mk II

The Voice

Zephyr MK III


Carmen mk II


Irox Blue


Zephyr MIMC ☆

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cartridge installation

cartridge tracking force

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The Soundsmith Zephyr MIMC ($1499.95) is a new cartridge that uses much of the technology of the Soundsmith Sussurro ($4799.95),

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