MM? MC? cartridges

Do you use a MM cartridge? Why?
Do you use a high output MC? Why?
Do you use a low output MC? Why?

Low output MC. The sound is just more natural, delicate yet dynamic

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Both. MM and a low-output MC. Both are good, sound different. The MMs (an AT VM95ML and a Linn K9) have better PRaT and more life. The Rega Ania and AT OC9 are more detailed and dimensional, but don’t have the propulsiveness/PRaT of the MMs.

Low output moving iron. Soundsmith zephyr . Dynamic and airy.

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I’m using a low output MC, a Shelter 901, on a VPI Aries. To my way of thinking, years ago MC were the audiophile thing to get. Time has changed that and so has technology, all types of cartridges can sound very good. The best of the best seem to be mostly MC, but I find it lunacy to spend $10k or more for a cartridge. Of course if I had Aangen level of funds maybe it would only be a little silly. I’m actually thinking of a replacement and not sure what to get. Will be interested to see if any new information comes of this thread.

Back in the day, if you were a serious “Audiophile” you just had to have a moving coil cartridge. Otherwise, you might as well look over your shoulder for pitchforks from the purists who would label you as the “unwashed” (now we just say they must not have a resolving system). However, there was a dirty little secret, the Shure V15MR moving magnet. It was said there were many a closeted audiophile who owned these cartridges, but would never admit to it.


The V15MR was my “gateway” cartridge, leading me to the slightly stronger Stanton 681EEE all the way up to my current fix, an Ortofon Cadenza Bronze, one of five cartridges recommended by VPI for my Prime Signature.

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Low output MC.
My dealer recommended it.

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Low output MC (Ortofon Quintet Black S).

I upgraded from a MM (Ortofon 2M Blue).

Found much tighter and deeper bass, vocals were more forward and far more natural, highs shimmered a bit brighter, and much better separation of instruments. Generally a far more revealing sound.

Last 7 years: low output MC
Engaging sound
Believable acoustics
3+ decades before that : high output MC
Good, but less natural than low output

Same here - trusted his experience with arm / cart matching. Went from Denon 103r to Hana SL. No regrets.

Below $1K, I would chose MM with at least two exceptions : an upgraded DL103 ($900+) or the astonishing Hana ML that can aso be upgraded
Between $1K and $2K, there could be excptions but certainly MC
Over MCs.

Pay ttention to the cantilever and the tip.

You should also check if your arm and your cart matches well.