Thanks for the link with the massive protractor library. I'll try printing some and apply the alignment to this tonearm. I also found videos on youtube showing how to use them as well. Will be useful in the future. As for now, I'm going to have to get some rest since it's really late.
Yeah one of the prominent distortion I face is the record sounding worse as it goes nearer to the center. I really hope things will turn for the better with the alignment done.
Thanks a lot analogsurviver, you've been a great teacher to us
Regarding inner groove distortion - there is only one cure for that, and it is called stylus profile that can do it. I will be posting some links regarding stylus tip profiles, but in view of the money involved you have one option only to get the best stylus tip profile at anything like reasonable price. Audio Technica AT440MLa cartridge.
It has to be METICULOUSLY aligned/adjusted in order to get it right. I would require close ups of your arm to see if it can be adjusted well enough to accomodate this superb tip - if not, steer well clear, I will suggest the next best thing then.
It does not get better than Micro Line stylus tip profile as fitted on 440MLa. There are better/smaller/more precise etc variations on this tip at far higher prices, but you can not make the actual contact vinyl/diamond any better - because it would tend to re-cut the groove at each play. Micro Line (Ridge, Reach, etc - goes also under Jico's SAS Super Analogue Stylus name - for commercial reasons you will find for all practical purposes similar profiles will carry different names in order not to breach patents etc ) tip also offers the longest service life of any stylus tip profile, because it will not "spread" with use as will any other stylus tip. Will post some real photos of my sample of 440MLa - but align your present cart right first, as any "oops" you will be doing along the learning curve are better to be done on as inexpensive gear as you possibly can - not on your latest, usually costliest acquisition.
Procedure is basically the same, regardless of cost.
A stylus tip like ML, IF and WHEN CORRECTLY ALIGNED, has besides almost complete freedom from inner groove distortion, one extremely useful characteristic - records that have been played with lesser tips and sound quite distorted ( read - pretty much any vinyl you can buy second hand ) , will come out sounding almost like playing new records. Why?
The contact along the groove wall is so large compared to lesser profiles that it actually creates a "bridge" across the demaged portion of the groove, where lesser tip rode and produced wear and demage - riding on the virgin untouched groove walls . It may take a few plays to remove all the "chamfer debris" around the places where the demaged and undemaged portions of the groove meet, resulting in some additional noise - but it will eventually subside. After that, I recommend another vacuum cleaning of such a record - it can be quite amazing/shocking for a previous record owner to hear his/hers now ex-record sounding THAT good. You would perhaps rather not want to spread that gospel too much - pretty soon, it may happen no one within your " striking range " will be willing to sell any " old crappy vinyl " anymore...or the prices will skyrocket. So, careful with that one. It is the ticket to superb sound on the cheap.