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Cartridge Gallery

various detail shots of phono cartridges, and headshells  I have owned at one point or another....



Audio Technica

AT-140LC  140LC_1.jpg (116741 bytes) 140LC_2.jpg (139494 bytes) 140LC_3.jpg (117095 bytes)


AT-VM35VM35_1.jpg (208748 bytes) VM35_2.jpg (160093 bytes) VM35_3.jpg (173934 bytes)

These two came with an SME 3009 S2 tonearm I purchased from an eBay seller in France.  I haven't heard these.

Design: Moving Magnet. does not require step-up

DSC_5342.jpg (193745 bytes) DSC_5349.jpg (188891 bytes) DSC_5350.jpg (107424 bytes) DSC_5351.jpg (132747 bytes) DSC_5352.jpg (182904 bytes)

At the lower end of the price scale there is this model. It is a universal mount.  Fits either 1/2 inch mount or 'P' mount.  To fit 'P'mount, undo the screw on the back part of the body and remove the rear adapter frame.

Denon DL-103R MC  DL103R_1a.jpg (120509 bytes) DL103R_2a.jpg (101782 bytes) DL103R_3a.jpg (81310 bytes)  

With Uwe Ebony body DSC_3538.jpg (110143 bytes) DSC_2682.jpg (84823 bytes) DSC_2686.jpg (105667 bytes)

Review pending. Here is a potential world-beater for those who would care to put it in one of Uwe's wood bodies, then match it up with the appropriate step up transformer. It likes a fairly heavy toneam.  Design dates to 1962.  Initially intended for broadcast use. Still in production.  Several variations were made over the years.  Currently the two versions still being offered are the DL-103 and the DL-103R.  The difference is in the copper coils.  The "R" uses a higher purity copper, called  "6-nines copper" (99.9999% pure)  and has a different load impedance.  The 103 and 103R share same family sound but offer slightly different tonal character and with the "-R" offering  slightly improved upper frequency detail along with a smoother overall tone quality.

output voltage: .2 mV  Load: 14 ohms (-R) and 40 ohms (DL-103) both require voltage step-up*

Analogue Labs Aluminum body for the DL-103 and DL-103R:

DSC_6231.jpg (323714 bytes) DSC_6232.jpg (296772 bytes) DSC_6234.jpg (385554 bytes)

More about the Analogue Labs body when I get around to mounting a DL-103 into it.

More info here


Uwe TSD15_1rs.jpg (272771 bytes) emt tsd 15 with modifications by UWE.

Uwe TSD15_2rs.jpg (220062 bytes) action shot.  Tonearm is the Schroeder CB

Uwe TSD15_3rs.jpg (250392 bytes) mod revisions with smaller value capacitors, Panzerholz frame, Black Diamond and a big improvement in sound.


Grado Black DSC_3563.jpg (160144 bytes) DSC_3564.jpg (146755 bytes)  Inevitable, cheap yet respectable and still available.

design: Moving Iron. Output Voltage: 5 mV, load: 47Kohms, does not require step-up

 Ortofon Jubilee MC   JUB_1a.jpg (109587 bytes)  JUB_3a.jpg (108565 bytes)  

 close-up detail of the Shibata stylus. shibata_1.jpg (466850 bytes)  

photos 10/2/2011

DSC_5954.jpg (216306 bytes) DSC_5955.jpg (193606 bytes) DSC_5956.jpg (170391 bytes) DSC_5957.jpg (192868 bytes) DSC_5960.jpg (190563 bytes) DSC_5961.jpg (199777 bytes) DSC_5966.jpg (224566 bytes)

This cartridge does nothing wrong.  And for a retail list price of ~ $1900 it should not.

Review here.

output voltage: .34 mV,  Load: 10 ohms requires step-up*

Pickering. DSC_3560.jpg (66509 bytes) DSC_3562.jpg (95574 bytes)  


UV-15, D 2000-Q

DSC_3288.jpg (319069 bytes) DSC_3287.jpg (422313 bytes) DSC_3286.jpg (408261 bytes) DSC_3284.jpg (235702 bytes) 

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stylus descr: quadrahedral
tracking force: 2.0 ± .5g
freq response:  20 - 45Khz
output: 3.8mv±2db
inductance per chan: 350mh
resistance per chan: 750 ohms
stylus part no. D 2000 Q


brand, model: Realistic R1000 ED  

type: moving magnet

DSC_5549.jpg (158069 bytes) DSC_5550.jpg (123890 bytes) DSC_5551.jpg (133258 bytes)

This cartridge is missing the stylus assembly.  A new replacement should be available somewhere.

DSC_5552.jpg (124364 bytes) DSC_5553.jpg (108339 bytes) DSC_5554.jpg (119238 bytes) DSC_5555.jpg (135814 bytes)

OEM from Shure.  Judging by the body shape I would compare this  model to a Shure M75ED or M91ED  I am not really certain.  Anyone have definitive info on this?  

Comments to webmaster@theanalogdept.com





Shelter 501 II MC  s501ii_cantilever_1.jpg (102865 bytes)   DSC_3577.jpg (174467 bytes) DSC_3578.jpg (148407 bytes) DSC_3579.jpg (96049 bytes)

  u510_11_26_05_8a.jpg (62970 bytes)

This cartridge has character.  Dynamic. Expressive.  Emotional.  Nice midrange.  Bass is a little tight but extended and textured.  Nimble. Fast transients.  With the right record, can raise the hairs on the back of your neck.  Not a particularly great tracker.

Review here.

Output voltage: .4 mV.  Load: 10 ohms, requires step-up*

It also can be killed with blunt force:

The mishap occurred when the tonearm/cart was allowed to bang against the side of a platter.  At the time the damage wasn't recognized.  The stylus is very small and can't be seen without magnification.  Interestingly, the cantilever remained straight.  Damage has caused the cantilever and stylus to rotate within its mount.  Obviously, the cartridge is unplayable as is.

update: 3/9/2010

cantilever found to be "loose".  The cantilever could be carefully rotated back into position using a fine tweezer.  After removing the cantilever, and viewing it under as much magnification as was available, I was able to conclude that apparently the adhesive bond failed.  The fix, should be obvious.  Add glue and stick the cantilever back into its pipe. Here are a couple of shots after re-glue:

reglueshelter_1.JPG (174386 bytes) reglueshelter_2.JPG (131753 bytes) adhesive in use: cyanoacrylate (aka superglue)

reglueshelter_3.JPG (81990 bytes) reglueshelter_4.JPG (101641 bytes) reglueshelter_5.JPG (97017 bytes) reglueshelter_6.JPG (107286 bytes) reglueshelter_7.JPG (88581 bytes) reglueshelter_8.JPG (131232 bytes) at play

But the Shelter wasn't right.  Sound Quality was off.  So I shelved it untill............

I found someone who could make a proper repair

Shelter refurbished click link to read the details


Shure V15VxMR

DSC_3581.jpg (139578 bytes) DSC_3585.jpg (148991 bytes) DSC_3586.jpg (123340 bytes) This version of the V15 was made in Mexico.  Now it is out of production. This is the last of the Shure V15 series.  It is a nice sounding moving magnet cartridge, if a touch rolled off in the high frequencies.  Capacitance of your tonearm wires need to be around 250 pF.  Load = 47kohms.  Static compliance is approx. 20 x 10-6nm.  Compliance of this model is not as soft as earlier V15 versions.  It mated well with my Rega tonearm.  

Output voltage: 3 mV  does not require step-up


DSC_5952.jpg (136201 bytes) DSC_5968.jpg (182435 bytes) DSC_5969.jpg (289000 bytes) DSC_5970.jpg (293234 bytes) DSC_5971.jpg (214865 bytes) DSC_5972.jpg (249984 bytes) DSC_5973.jpg (253103 bytes)




Sumiko Blue Point Special

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above: a dead Blue Point Special, sigh.

BPS3d_1web.jpg (59204 bytes)

but here's a virtual one.

High Output Moving Coil. Load= 47Kohms.  Works with standard MM phono stages common to most 60's,70's and 80's good quality stereo receivers.

In the late 1990's this cartridge received rave reviews within the audio press.  Based on these recommendations I purchased the above sample. In practice I found that the cartridge was a good compliance match to the Thorens TP16 (mk 1) tonearm on my TD160. I also noticed that there was absolutely nothing remarkable about the sonic performance of this cartridge. Average sounding.  Not bad.  Not great.  After about a year I managed to lightly snag the cantilever with a dust cloth. Above photos show the damage.  The cartridge could have been re-tipped but I didn't feel it was worth the bother or expense.  Didn't care.  I would rather have saved initial purchase money for something else.


Orsonic AV-101S, anti-vibration universal head shell

Made in Japan.

DSC_5842.jpg (303691 bytes) DSC_5843.jpg (252475 bytes) DSC_5844.jpg (246418 bytes) DSC_5845.jpg (226996 bytes)

DSC_5846.jpg (255885 bytes) DSC_5847.jpg (304192 bytes) DSC_5848.jpg (305524 bytes)





*Generally, low output moving coil cartridges have a reputation to be the best sounding of their type.   But the main disadvantage is that the output voltage is so low it requires a step-up device in line between itself and the phono-preamplifier.  Another critical factor is the introduction of noise and hum into this very fragile and vulnerable signal.  Great care must be taken to transform and deliver the signal cleanly into the phono-preamplifier.   more info