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Analog Spotlight: Dynavector MC Phono Cartridges

Analog Spotlight: Dynavector MC Phono Cartridges
Analog Spotlight: Dynavector MC Phono Cartridges

Dynavector from Japan has been making moving coil (MC) cartridges since 1975, which (doing the math) is 45 years of experience.

Having concentrated on producing only one type of cartridge, they have succeeded in building consistent cartridges with extremely little variation from one sample to the next. Their focus has also resulted in their cartridges offering great value; long and consistent production runs have lead to their cartridges being very high performance relative to their cost .

Along the way and throughout their full line of cartridges Dynavector has innovated magnetic flux damping, patented softened magnetism, and the use of  neodymium magnets.  

Dynavector's most affordable cartridge is the venerable 10X5 Mk 2 ($750). This features a nude Shibata stylus and a potent 2.8mV output which allows it to be used with most MM phono stages. The design of the cartridge works well with most tonearms, both pivoted and uni-pivots, as do all of the Dynavector cartridges.

Moving up the line increases the performance with the DV-20X, which is available in both a low output version ($1150) and a high output version($1150). The stylus is upgraded to a nude line contact type for this and all of the higher priced models in the line.

The next step up is the XX-2 MK ($1995), which incorporates Alnico magnets, a solid boron cantilever, and .28mV output (low output only).  This cartridge provides greater channel separation, deeper bass response and (a Dynavector hallmark) grainless treble that seemingly extends forever. 

  From here, Dynavector offers their Reference series of cartridges, the unusually-named Te Kaitora Rua ($3450), the DRT-XV1S ($5650) and the flagship reference, the DRT-XV-1t ($9450).  Every step up the line offers even greater refinement and higher performance.

All of the cartridges fall into the 7-12 gram weight range, which means no special counterweights are needed. All also have the mounting threads tapped into the cartridge body,  so no fumbling with screws and nuts when trying to install the cartridge.  

In summary, Dynavector cartridges offer value, consistency, ease of installation, and models for most budgets. Highly recommended!

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