JICO Super Analog Styli (SAS and neoSAS)
JICO SAS replacement stylus assemblies are available for the following cartridges.
SHURE VN15, VN35, VN 45, VN5MR, VN5xMR, N75ED, N91ED, N92E, N95ED, N97xE, N110
PANASONIC 270ED, P30E, 202ED, 205EX, 205ED
Precision-made Premium Quality Super Analog Stylus
Utilizing stylus tip, cantilever, and magnet which are dedicated to the faithful reproduction of analog sound. Available in SAS (boron), neoSAS/S (sapphire) and neoSAS/R (ruby) cantilever configurations.
1. S.A.S. Profile Tip
The tip of the Super Analog Stylus is carefully chosen from single-crystal natural diamonds. The laser-cut diamond closely resembles that of the cutting stylus used on a cutting lathe to produce the acetate master disks used in vinyl production. This allows the S.A.S. tip to reach into the deepest recesses of the record groove in order to retrieve details which were previously inaccessible to other stylus profiles. Due to its wide contact area with the groove wall, the S.A.S can reproduce a more expansive bandwidth of information with higher fidelity.
Featuring a line contact profile in the shape of a narrow ridge only a few microns in width, the S.A.S. tip achieves a curvature of radius not previously available in similarly shaped styli. The curvature of this profile is optimized to distribute effective mass, thereby eliminating excess pressure on the record groove wall and reducing distortion introduced by uneven wear. Additionally, the tip is polished to the highest standard to preserve the record and extend the use of the stylus.
2. Sapphire/Ruby Cantilever Construction
The neoSAS/S replaces the boron of the previous generation with crystalline sapphire cantilever. Having a hardness only one degree from that of diamond, the extreme stiffness of sapphire allows the cantilever to transmit vibrations from the record groove without damping the signal. In other words, the cantilever betrays virtually no emphasis, influence, or “coloration” on the original sound source.
Macro photo of sapphire cantilever and tip
Similarly the neoSAS/R enjoys all the benefits listed above with one crucial advantage:
The four facets of its crystalline ruby cantilever taper toward the diamond tip. This tapered ruby cantilever design allows for lower moving mass, giving the neoSAS/R even greater ability reproduce vibrations in the record groove with precision, accuracy, speed, and fidelity.
Facets of the tapered ruby cantilever can be seen in the images above and below. Cuts made to the cantilever reduce the moving mass of the diamond stylus tip.
3. Single Point Tension Wire Suspension
In order to transmit vibrations from the stylus tip to the transducer magnet faithfully, the cantilever is supported by a specially constructed suspension. A single strand of ultra-fine piano wire is attached to the cantilever which then passes through the magnet before being secured internally to the housing. This helps to stabilize the movement of the magnet and reduce distortion from resonance that builds up as oscillations are transmitted through the cantilever, thus preserving the original signal down to the smallest detail.
Tension wire controls movement of cantilever and tip
4. Specially Formed Rare Earth Magnet
To extract the maximum performance from the single point tension wire a specially shaped magnet is mounted coaxially to the cantilever. The magnet is composed of rare earth elements, the magnetic strength and reduced weight of which give it exceptional properties for use in this application.
Contact Surface Area as a Function of Stylus Tip Profile
The chart below depicts several types of stylus profiles viewed head on and in cross section. Also seen are the measurements of their tip radii and the surface area in contact with the record groove wall. Profile radii (R) are measured in microns (µ). Surface area in square microns (µ2) is calculated using measurements L1 and L2.
Variations in the size and shape of the stylus tip affect the amount of surface area which can be applied to the groove wall. By optimizing its curvature and reducing the minor radius, the S.A.S. tip maximizes the contact surface area by a factor of 1.25 in comparison to other line contact styli.
Points of Contact with the Record Groove During Reproduction
As the record rotates the orientation of the groove wall changes relative to its point of contact with the stylus. At the microscopic level the undulations of the groove present various angles to the diamond tip. Because the S.A.S. tip mimics the shape of a cutting stylus, it sits more comfortably in the groove. The better the stylus fits the record groove, the less distortion occurs at high amplitude reproduction.
- Be sure to use the S.A.S. stylus at the prescribed tracking force of 1.25±0.25 g. Greater force may damage the stylus tip or the record groove, or distort sound reproduction. (If your stylus features a dynamic stabilizer brush such as those found on the VN5MR neoSAS variants and other models, an additional 0.25 g of tracking force is advised when the brush is engaged.)
- Because of the extremely precise reproduction capability of the S.A.S. stylus, it is particularly sensitive to foreign matter or dust in record grooves. To prevent distortion, muffled sound, noise and excessive stylus wear, make it a practice to clean each record before playing it.
- Foreign matter or dust can also collect on the stylus itself. It should be checked before playing each record.
- Be careful not to strike the stylus tip with any object, touch it with bare hands, or damage it in any other way.
- Although the criteria for replacing the stylus vary depending on conditions of use, it should last for approximately 500 playing hours at optimum performance and can be used much longer in less than optimum condition (2-3 times as long as a standard diamond stylus).
- Unlike cantilevers of conventional material, the sapphire and ruby cantilevers are susceptible to fracture. Please refrain from using excessive force or touching the cantilever unless absolutely necessary (i.e. for the purpose of cleaning)
*In the interest of product improvement, changes may be made to specifications without prior notice.