The Best Ortofon Cartridge [Buying Guide 2020]

Vinyl records are undeniably a timeless beauty. The sound they provide with the ambiance they create, it’s truly dreamy and matchless.

Be it in the retro gramophone style or jazzy DJ style – the turntables have a thing for producing the most accurate, powerful, and honey-blend of sounds. Isn’t it?

It’s quite unfortunate to see them being pushed back by the bulks of MP3 players, CD players, and newer audio devices. It’s like we’ve lost our gem in the crowd.

But know that it’s never too late for anything. You turntable still awaits your attention patiently.

Just lift it from the dust, just like it’s music lifted you from your dreadful times once upon a time, and get back to vibing. And you need not panic if it doesn’t sound the same; you do not need a new record player.

Best Ortofon Cartridge

This all-embracing guide is all about how to bring your evocative pal back to life. All that you will need to upgrade is its cartridge. And we’ve listed down the top 10 options from a leading brand, i.e., Ortofon. So, most definitely, you’ll find your next cartridge in only a few minutes.

Also, if you belong to the parallel universe and remained committed to your love for Vinyl, all this while: we are proud of you! Picking the best Ortofon cartridge will most likely be a piece of cake for you. But if not, we’ve also included a comprehensive buying guide to help your choose an Ortofon cartridge that best meets your needs.

We have specified what you should seek. So, don’t hesitate if you’re returning after a long time or buying for the first time. Let’s get straight into it!

Best Ortofon Cartridge in 2020

CartridgeTracking ForceOutput Voltage 
Ortofon 2M Blue Cartridge1.8 gm5.5 mV Check Price
Ortofon Omega 1e Cartridge1.5-2.0 gm4.0 mV Check Price
Ortofon 2M Red Moving Cartridge1.6-2.0 gm5.5 mV Check Price
Ortofon Mk2 Twin Cartridge3.0 gm6.0 mV Check Price
Ortofon Super om 10 Cartridge1.25-1.75 gm4.0 mV Check Price
Ortofon 2m Moving Cartridge1.5 gm5.0 mV Check Price
Ortofon Om Pro S Cartridge4.0 gm5.0 mV Check Price
Ortofon Om 5s Magnet Cartridge1.5-2.0 gm4.5 mV Check Price
Ortofon 2m Blue Cartridge1.6-2.0 gm5.5 mV Check Price
Ortofon 2m Red Cartridge1.6-2.0 gm5.5 mV Check Price

1. Ortofon 2M Blue Moving Magnet Cartridge

Ortofon 2M Blue Moving Magnet Cartridge

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Stunning and Sturdy, the Ortofon 2m Blue Moving Magnet Cartridge is an entry-level upgrade to any budget turntable. It might not excel in all aspects, but it does offer some amazing specs. Let’s evaluate its detail!

At a glance, the angular structure of the Ortofon 2m blue cartridge is quite visually-pleasing. Its blue-colored accents complement the angular body, making the outlook aesthetic. The cartridge features an elliptical needle tip. Plus, the stylus of the cartridge is replaceable!

The company claims the stylus to maintain its original state for more than 2000-hours. However, it is likely to last 1000-hours before it begins showing slight changes.

And, appropriate care can extend this lifespan. There are several efficient methods to take care of the stylus. For example, you can use a fiber brush to clean the record. The removal of dust particles from the diamond tip before and after usage is another effective way. Avoid usage of any solvents on the product, as per Ortofon’s recommendations.

The exterior of the Ortofon 2m Blue Moving Magnet Cartridge consists of high-grade plastic. Hence, making it highly durable. It won’t shatter into pieces upon the slightest of falls.

Along with a large surface area, the cartridge has a lightweight construction that makes handling easier. It has optimized dimensions that fit all turntables. The presence of an integrated design and threaded holes make mounting convenient too.

In terms of performance, the engineers at Ortofon have equipped the cartridge with an improved engine. It allows the 2M Blue to deliver an output of 5.5mV. Consequently, the reproduced sounds are highly accurate and rich.

The stylus comes with a Nude Elliptical diamond, split pole pins, and copper wire. As these are quite rigid, the structure eliminates all unwanted resonances and repetitions. Thus, the delivered audio has outstanding dynamics and details.

Perhaps, the mere drawback is that some tracks on the 2M Blue cartridge may not sound as solid. A few audiophiles and experts have highlighted the presence of slight noise. However, if you are not so picky, this might not be a concern.

On the body, you will find a mounting plate that has several captive nuts so that you can fix the bolts directly. Using it, you can expand the compatibility of the device to a great extent.

All in all, the 2m Blue is the best Ortofon Cartridge for entry-level upgrades. If you want advanced modifications in your cartridge’s performance, then you try considering other options in this compilation.

Pros
  • Ideal for all turntables
  • Quality performance
  • Ease of use
  • Sturdy build
  • Replaceable stylus
  • Good compatibility
Cons
  • Slight noise on the surface
Ortofon 2M Blue Moving Magnet Cartridge
  • Universal fit for most turntables
  • Upgrade to the Ortofon 2M Red
  • The Ortofon 2M Blue adds more dynamics and resolution, sounds more...

2. Ortofon Omega 1e Moving Magnet Cartridge

Ortofon Omega 1e Moving Magnet Cartridge

As the pride of Ortofon, Omega 1e is a cartridge of wonders. From looks to functionality, it will leave you stunned and awestruck, especially if you’re seeking maximum possible smoothness and balance in sound.

Firstly, the Ortofon Omega 1e moving magnet cartridge has a versatile built. You could pair it with the latest cutting-edge USB turntables or with anyone from your vintage collection. It’s bound to fit perfectly, at least for those that come with standard specifications.

Also, once you start installing it, you will be surprised at the undemanding nature of this intricate cartridge. It will hardly take five minutes to install this, inclusive of unscrewing the previous cartridge. So, it’s both easy to mount and easy to use.

Moreover, its channel balance at 1 kHz is around 2 decibels, which means you will not encounter any distortion issues or have to face the annoying interference of screeches. Additionally, its output voltage at 1000 Hz, 5 centimeters per second, is about 4mV. Such an output makes truly makes this moving magnet cartridge power-efficient.

Plus, Ortofon Omega 1e features an elliptical stylus. Its fine tip will achieve maximum possible contact with the groove area. Consequently, reproducing deep and rich sounds with precision and accuracy. It also guarantees an improved frequency response.

However, the elliptical design of the stylus also means that it may not last long, especially if used intensively. But if you care for it like you ought to, it may stay by you for years!

With a tracking force range of about 1.5 – 2.0 grams, the cartridge will neither burden your record nor sit upon it too lightly. Hence, protecting your vinyl records from any scratches or damage that too heavy or too light tracking forces often cause. Its 20° tracking angle further contributes to the generation of smooth and balanced audio.

While its inner mechanism will continue to soothe your ears with pure, unaltered music, its simplistic exterior will please your eyes equally, too. The gray-colored compact cartridge will complement your turntable and fall in complete harmony. Thus, augmenting the aesthetics of your audio gear.

What’s more, even with its super budget-friendly price, it’s a safe purchase! The cartridge will come with a complete two-year warranty.

Pros
  • Extensive Compatibility
  • Replaceable Stylus
  • Easy to mount
  • Inexpensive
  • Clean, smooth, and balanced audio quality
  • Comes with a 2-year warranty
Cons
  • Not the best reproduction of low frequencies
  • Stylus may wear down quickly

3. Ortofon 2m Red Moving Magnet Cartridge

Ortofon 2m Red Moving Magnet Cartridge

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The Ortofon 2m Red Moving Magnet Cartridge has received massive appreciation as well as much criticism since its release. Belonging to the latest 2m series, the mixed feedback on Ortofon 2m Red has left several buyers confused. Let’s resolve it!

At a glance, the Ortofon 2M has an aesthetic red exterior that augments your turntable’s outlook. Plus, it comprises high-grade materials so that it will last for a long period.

Equipped with innovative technology, the Ortofon 2m Red Moving Magnet Cartridge delivers a crisp, enjoyable sound quality. Overall, the produced sounds are dynamics. However, it excels in the following two components of audio, including:

TrebleBass
The treble withholds immense clarity when the audio gets played using this cartridge. It is spacious, detailed, and crisp. However, too much clarity highlights the flaws in the record, making it less enjoyable. People seeking fun in the records might get disappointed quickly.
Ortofon 2m Red also delivers an exceptional bass that is punchy. Unlike some other cartridges, it does not overdo its job by making the bass too deep. Instead, it has a nice texture and feels.

Precisely, this cartridge has an outstanding performance. But, it might not sound as good if you’re a critical listener. Moreover, the Ortofon 2m Red features a tracking range force between 1.6-2.0g. Its tracking is quite clean and smooth.

As for the compliance, it is 2u0cu (at 10Hz). It is not too low nor too high. Hence, it would work amazingly on borderline low-mass arms.

Furthermore, the recommended capacitive load range for the Ortofon 2m Red Moving Magnet Cartridge is 150-300pF. So, it works efficiently with numerous turntables.

All in all, the Ortofon 2m Red is an amazing cartridge for turntables that offers excellent sound and performance.

Pros
  • Aesthetic looks
  • Sturdy build
  • Excellent performance
  • Integrated design
Cons
  • Not ideal for picky listeners
Ortofon 2M Red Moving Magnet Cartridge
  • Universal fit for most turntables
  • Upgrade from stock cartridges
  • The Ortofon 2M Red is an all-purpose cartridge that delivers open,...

4. Ortofon Concorde Mk2 Mix Twin Cartridge

Ortofon Concorde Mk2 Mix Twin Cartridge

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Ortofon Concorde MK2 intends to satisfy the needs of DJs more than those who cherish soft tracks occasionally. It is a tough beast that withstands intensive usage while offering the maximum possible exposure of the sound spectrum held in your records.

Assessing its exterior first: you will find this cartridge a bit much cooler than most of the other Ortofon cartridges. The black-colored surface of the cantilever features a solid green-colored mark towards the stylus and a branding mark on the side. In terms of construction, it has a narrow built with well-defined edges, which give it a smart look. Overall, when mounted, it will look super stylish on your turntable.

The narrow built, along with a sturdy nature, also means an ideal distribution of weight. And this, in turn, equates to better tracking. The lightweight design and accurate placement of the stylus bring about the right pressure and consequent contact with the records.

Moreover, the Ortofon Concorde MK2 Mix Cartridge comes with replaceable styli, a flight case, two protection guards, and a dust brush. Hence, at under 200, this particular Ortofon buys us truly value for money.

Plus, its efficient output of 6mV and an admirable frequency response range of 20-20000 Hz promises amazing exposure of sound. Here’s what you can expect from this masterpiece:

  • Wider soundstage
  • Emphasis on details & lower frequencies
  • Accuracy & transparency

Hence, it promises an enjoyable listening experience. The spherical stylus, however, does not fit deeply into the grooves of the records. Thus, you may find the sound distorting at a point or two. However, it only happens rarely, so it’s not much of a purchase-influencing factor.

Pros
  • Easy to install
  • Comes with replaceable styli
  • Comes with flight case
  • Great output
  • Sturdy built
  • Transparent Sound
  • Accuracy & Clarity in Sound
Cons
  • May require frequent maintenance & care
  • Slight distortion
Ortofon Concorde MK2 Mix Twin Cartridge
  • The new generation of Ortofon Concorde MK2 DJ cartridges are tailored...
  • Will fit all DJ turntables with a removable headshell
  • A groovy all-rounder

5. Ortofon Super om 10 Moving Magnet Cartridge

Ortofon Super om 10 Moving Magnet Cartridge

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The Ortofon Super-series has remained quite popular, especially Super Om 10. It is the go-to option of several audio experts when it comes to turntable cartridges. But why? What makes it exceptional in front of the other Ortofon cartridges? Let’s unravel!

Visually, the Ortofon Super Om 10 Moving Magnet Cartridge does not compete with the 2M series and other cartridges on this list. It has a rather dull exterior that may not contribute much to the turntable’s outlook.

However, despite the deceiving looks, the Ortofon Super Om 10 consists of some amazing, innovative features. Its advanced moving magnet technology produces high-quality output signals. Hence, preserving the originality of the record and transferring every detail into audio with immense efficiency.

Perhaps, the highlight of the Super Om 10 is its interchangeable Elliptical stylus. Once damaged, you do not need to change the complete turntable. Instead, replace the cartridge with a new or upgrade it.

The stylus of the Ortofon Super Om 10 features an optimal oscillation balance that allows smoother rotations. Hence, producing crisp sound quality with minimal distortion.

However, according to user experience, there is a slight distortion initially. When you install the new cartridge, it will take some time before there is negligible or no distortion at all.

Moreover, it features a removable weight plate to extend the cartridge’s compatibility to a diversity of tonearms. You will also find a cut-out nose that allows you to cue the record with immense precision. You can start playback from wherever desired without causing damage to the turntable.

The Ortofon Super Om 10 cartridge has a lightweight construction and a tracking angle of 20-degrees. These ideal specifications signify that the cartridge will not exert unnecessary force on the records, scratching or damaging it as a result.

In a nutshell, the Ortofon Super Om 10 Moving Magnet Cartridge is a highlight amongst Ortofon cartridges due to three fundamental reasons. These include:

  • Deliverance of smooth and fine audio
  • Upgradable design
  • Reasonable price for the specifications

The Ortofon Super Om 10 is undeniably the best Ortofon cartridge. Unlike other competitors, its user-oriented design is highly advantageous!

Pros
  • Excellent performance
  • High output signal
  • Fine sound quality
  • Upgradable design
  • Value for money
Cons
  • Slight distortion
Ortofon Super OM 10 Moving Magnet Cartridge
  • Fits most standard turntables
  • Easily relpaceable stylus
  • Elliptical diamond

6. Ortofon 2m Bronze Moving Magnet Cartridge

Ortofon 2m Bronze Moving Magnet Cartridge

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If you seek a premium Ortofon cartridge, then the Ortofon 2M Bronze moving magnet cartridge is just for you! This uniquely built cartridge is not only one of the premium variants introduced but also one of the universal ones too.

Ortofon 2M bronze is compatible with most standard turntables. So, whether you own a rare model or perhaps multiple turntables, this iconic cartridge will come in handy.

Moreover, Ortofon 2M features a Nude Fine line diamond stylus, which has a substantially slim profile. Consequently, it is capable of tracking high and low frequencies efficiently. Even the frequency range that these cartridge covers is an extensive one, i.e., 20 Hz – 29000 Hz. Hence, it’s ideal for anyone who listens to quite a lot of music and craves the details that cheaper cartridges fail to reproduce. It will bring forward everything, including the faint drums, echoes, guitars, and everything else in the shadow of louder sounds.

Also, this efficient cartridge excels at eliminating the surface noise and augmenting the immersive nature of tracks. You will experience a spacious soundstage without any hints of distortion at any level of volume.

Additionally, it comes with a stylus brush, two types of screw, a stylus pressure gauge, and a screwdriver. Hence, making the installation of this cartridge easier than ever.

Along with providing these tools, Ortofon also provides installation and care guides to its clientele. You can easily access this when purchasing the product. With that said, proper care will help the stylus perform well and last up to 2000 hours.

However, if you fail to care well for it, the lifetime may reduce to 1000 hours. Although the reduced lifetime doesn’t sound as bad, note that It equates to record-damage as well. Thus, do not compromise on stylus care.

According to us, the only considerable downside is its price. The cartridge is great, no doubt. And incomparable in terms of looks and the frequency response too. However, the accompanying price tag makes a person with a mid-range budget think twice. But if budget is not an issue with you, then we recommend you to get it immediately!

Pros
  • Unique built
  • Wider frequency response
  • Exposes details
  • Impressive tracking force
  • Extensive compatibility
  • Neutral sound
Cons
  • Requires maintenance
  • Expensive
Ortofon 2M Bronze Moving Magnet Cartridge
  • Universal fit for most turntables
  • Upgrade to the Ortofon 2M Red and 2M Blue
  • The Ortofon 2M Bronze adds even more resolution and details in an...

7. Ortofon Om Pro S Cartridge

Ortofon Om Pro S Cartridge

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Here’s yet another good pick for all the DJ’s out there. Or more accurately, for all the aspiring DJ’s out there who are only beginning to explore this intriguing domain.

Ortofon OM Pro S is a cartridge that doesn’t offer the precision that a professional would require. But it does offer a diversity that a beginner would like to explore.

First things first, it’s compatible with a variety of turntables. So, if you’re trying a hand at multiple turntables to determine which one best suits your taste or which one you’d like to experiment with, this cartridge is an ideal pick.

Plus, it comes pre-mounted on the SH-4 headshell, which you can easily pair with several types of tonearms. It eases the installation process and makes it hassle-free as well.

So, for any beginners who are not yet confident in handling cartridges and expensive turntable equipment, this is an excellent cartridge, to begin with. It’s sturdy built, inclusive of the rugged and solid cantilever, further adds to the handling confidence.

Moreover, Ortofon OM Pro S premounted on headshell has some fairly good looks as well, which in turn will serve for maintaining your aesthetics and keeping your spirits soaring high.

Furthermore, the spherical diamond stylus minimizes the scratches that stylus movement may cause. It also picks up the patterns of record well. Thus, producing admirably clear and immersive sounds.

However, the frequency range offered by this cartridge is not quite up to par. As per standard, a cartridge ought to offer a frequency range of about 20 Hz – 20000 Hz. Ortofon OM Pro S offers a frequency range of about 20 Hz – 18000 Hz, which does not cover the faint low-frequency sounds.

Pros
  • Extremely easy installation
  • Excellent tracking force
  • Perfect for newbies
  • Sturdy built
  • Extensive Compatibility
  • Economical
Cons
  • Average frequency range
Ortofon OM Pro S premounted on headshell
  • General purpose DJ cartridge
  • Features a spherical diamond stylus which minimizes wear
  • Includes a rugged cantilever which can survive hectic activity at the...

8. Ortofon Om 5s Moving Magnet Cartridge

Ortofon Om 5s Moving Magnet Cartridge

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As an entry-level cartridge, the Ortofon OM 5s moving magnet cartridge performs quite brilliantly. It offers an immersive sound reproduction, easy maintenance, and handling, and a sturdy built.

Ortofon OM 5s aims to allow the user to customize and optimize their turntable as per their desire without having to change the entire cartridge. Hence, the OM 5 series promise stylus replacement.

This amazing variant also offers a wide frequency range, i.e., 20 Hz – 22000 Hz, along with a strong tracking force. So, you’re sure to experience an array of sounds ranging from broads of the sound spectrum to precision.

What’s more, it comes with a removable weight plate. So, if you have a standard tonearm, it will fit in perfectly. But, if you’ve got a low mass tonearm, you can easily remove the weight plate and do with the remaining 2.5 grams of weight.

Perhaps, the best part about this cartridge is that you get to avail of all these features at an unbelievably low price.

But since they cost under 50, there are a few compromises in the looks. It’s not as glossy, stylish, or classy as other Ortofon cartridges in this list. But still, OM 5s Ortofon ranked as the best Ortofon Cartridge, thanks to its built and mechanism.

Like all other moving magnet cartridges, it comes with a magnet attached to the cantilever, which moves inside the stationary coil to induce the voltage that reproduces music. Of course, a certain degree of amplification is also provided to this voltage for the best of music reproduction. But unlike the moving coil cartridge, you need not connect it to an external preamp.

However, what sets it apart is its weight. It weighs incredibly low. Thus, allowing the cartridge to move and stop as soon as you command it to do so. Consequently, producing a honey-blend of smooth sounds with zero to negligible distortions. With this, accuracy and clarity are also phenomenal.

Pros
  • Inexpensive
  • Removable weight plate
  • Excellent compatibility
  • Easy to mount
  • Lightweight
  • Replaceable stylus
  • Wider frequency range
Cons
  • Average looks
Ortofon OM 5s Moving Magnet Cartridge
  • Fits most standard turntables
  • Easily relpaceable stylus
  • Spherical diamond

9. Ortofon 2m Blue Cartridge

Ortofon 2m Blue Cartridge

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Ortofon 2M blue might not sound new to those who have already tried the basic red version, i.e., Ortofon 2M red. It’s more or less an upgrade of the latter.

The primary difference between the two is of the stylus. Ortofon 2M Blue premounted on headshell comes with a nude elliptical stylus, which allows for better frequency response and stereo imaging.

At 3 decibels, the frequency range offered by the cartridge is around 20 Hz – 22000 Hz, while at 1 decibel, the frequency range is 20 Hz – 20000 Hz. Hence, even at its minimum, it’s capable of picking the slowest and faint of all sound vibrations.

Moreover, you can replace the stylus whenever you feel the need with the 2M Red and 2M Silver. It’s highly unlikely that you will feel the need to do so, but even so, this just demonstrates the versatility and extensive functionality of this cartridge.

The fine built reduces the number of unwanted vibrations. Thus, reproducing smooth sound with no distortions.

The accuracy and clarity provided by Ortofon 2M blue are one of its highlighted features. Note that its heavyweight does not impact its performance, but it does affect the handling.

Plus, the Ortofon 2M blue comes premounted on an exquisitely bold royal-blue colored SH4 headshell. Hence, setting up this cartridge on your turntable is also easy.

With that said, the compatibility of this cartridge is super impressive too. Whether you have an Audio-Technica LP5 or Technics 1800 MK2, this cartridge will fit perfectly well on every other turntable.

All you will need to ensure is that the turntable you own comes with an S-shaped tonearm. The rest will come along well.

Pros
  • Best Precision
  • Impressive tracking
  • Good compatibility
  • Easy to setup
  • Reduces unwanted vibration
  • Elegant looks
Cons
  • Designed to go with S-shaped tonearm
  • Heavyweight
Ortofon 2M Blue premounted on headshell
  • Universal mount fitting a wide range of S-shaped tonearms
  • Upgrade to the Ortofon 2M Red
  • The Ortofon 2M Blue adds more dynamics and resolution, sounds more...

10. Ortofon 2m Red Cartridge

Ortofon 2m Red Cartridge

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Here comes the most popular variant of all Ortofon cartridges, i.e., the Ortofon 2M Red. This versatile cartridge was one of the most initial cartridges introduced by Ortofon. So, no doubt, the company had put huge amounts of effort into this model to make it a top-seller.

However, the later variants came with even better upgrades. Regardless of the fact, Ortofon 2M premounted on headshell still holds its original value, thanks to the music reproduction it provides. These include:

  • Clear & Crisp Treble
  • Warm yet identifiable Bass
  • Full & expressive midrange
  • Accuracy in vocals

Collectively, these bring about a real impact and an immersive listening experience.

Moreover, this particular variant comes premounted on a sturdy and well-built headshell, which makes setting it up easy and convenient.

It comes with an elliptical diamond-shaped stylus that reads the grooves of the records very well. Thus, it’s capable of translating the music just as composed, with all its details. However, being heavyweight, its stylus may cause distortion or two occasionally. But the case is rare and only occurs after intensive usage of the cartridge.

Since the stylus features an elliptical design, it is quite too much in contact with the depressions of grooves. Such contact can lead to quick wear down, thus reducing the lifespan of the stylus. You can easily replace the worn-out version with a newer one, be it from Ortofon 2M Red or Ortofon 2M blue.

In terms of looks, this Ortofon cartridge will not let you down. Instead, it will lift your spirits with its classy design and elegant aura.

If paired with a black-colored headshell, it will blend in with the record, not disturbing the harmony of your turntable. But if you want your cartridge to stand out and make its presence loud and clear, you might find this red-colored headshell perfect.

Pros
  • Classy looks
  • Clear yet warm sounds
  • Easy to mount
  • Full & expressive mid-range
  • Accuracy & clarity
  • Suitable for professional use
Cons
  • Heavyweight
  • Relatively short lifespan
Ortofon 2M Red premounted on headshell
  • Universal mount fitting a wide range of S-shaped tonearms
  • Upgrade from stock cartridges
  • The Ortofon 2M Red is an all-purpose cartridge that delivers open,...

Ortofon Cartridge Buyer’s Guide:

Ortofon Cartridge Buying Guide

As a turntable owner, you must have dealt with several cartridge replacements. Even if you’re a first-timer, then get prepared for these replacement sessions. Well, it is likely because the movement causes the turntable cartridges to wear quickly.

Once the cartridge has worn, the changes in the turntable’s performance are quite visible and audible. The sounds will become distorted, noisy, and fuzzy. Physically, you’ll notice skipping and bouncing of the stylus.

When you notice these signs, know that you must get the cartridge changed as soon as possible. Using the turntable with damaged cartridges will only scratch the records and reduce work efficiency.

However, hunting for a new cartridge and getting it replaced is not an easy job. Read ahead to learn how you can purchase the ideal cartridge using half the time and energy you would have spent otherwise.

Things to Consider

Above, you have read a detailed Ortofon cartridge comparison, though you don’t need to purchase from the same brand. You can always opt for other cartridge manufacturing companies if it deems appropriate.

However, unlike Ortofon, not all brands ensure the delivery of the promised quality. So, you need to be extra vigilant. Below, you will find an insightful walkthrough regarding the factors you must take into consideration before finalizing the decision.

Needle Shape

The needle, also known as a stylus, is an integral component of the cartridge. Although a diversity of stylus variants have entered the market, there are only three basic categories of this stylus, including:

ConicalEllipticalFine Line
The conical or spherical stylus is slightly thicker than the others. Its thickness means it comes in contact with a smaller surface area. So, it might not dig deeper into the record grooves. As a result, leaving behind the details of the audio in the record.

On the positive side, the thickness increases the chances to limit contact with damaged parts and produce minimal surface noise.

Perhaps, this elegant elliptical stylus is the idealistic needle shape. It has a versatile structure that goes deeper into the grooves and tracks efficiently. However, they must get aligned properly for top-notch results.
As the title recommends, the fine line needle shapes unravel the most musical information while keeping distortion levels low. These are quite tiny in structure and precise in performance.

Compatibility

Next, you need to see if the cartridge you’ve chosen comes with limited compatibility or a versatile one. You could pick one that got designed specifically for the model of turntable you own, or if you’ve got multiple, then you can opt for one with extensive compatibility. If you find yourself confused about this, we suggest you go with the latter.

Tracking Force

Vinyl Cartridge Tracking Force

Fundamentally, tracking has a direct relation with the tip of the stylus. Be it in terms of force, weight, or angle.

The tip of your cartridge’s stylus needs to have appropriate weight. And that’s because being too heavy or too light can have adverse effects on your records.

Ideally, the weight of a stylus tip should range from 1-3 grams. However, all tips weighing 5 grams or lower perform well too. But those that weigh lower or higher than this may exert an undesirable amount of tracking force.

Lightweight ones can cause scratches in the record’s surface as they slide too fast, and heavier ones can damage the grooves.

Additionally, the ideal tracking angle is about 20 degrees with a room for addition or subtraction of 5 degrees. Most likely, manufacturers will provide specifications. Make sure you look into these details and verify if they are according to standards or not.

Budget

Lastly, determine the amount you wish to spend on the cartridge. By the general rule of thumb, the more you spend, the better quality you will get. However, Ortofone deflects a little from the general trend and believes in providing its clientele with better deals. Allow us to explain how.

On average, the price of cartridges ranges from around fifty dollars to a hundred. However, Ortofone brings you phenomenal cartridge options at less than fifty dollars as well! And this exactly why you see this guide revolving around Ortofon cartridges. The company promises only the best at reasonable rates.

With that said, you should know that some of the most expensive turntable cartridges even cost in thousands. The following are a few examples of the famous most-expensive-cartridges ever:

  • Lyra Atlas SI- $16000
  • Air Tight Opus 1 – $13 500
  • ZYX ultimate diamond – $12000

Given that, high-end models usually cost two hundred dollars or more. And amongst these, the moving coil cartridges are more expensive than the moving magnet cartridges.

Frequently Asked Questions

How to install Ortofon cartridge?

If your turntable isn’t new, you must start the installation process by removing the previous one. Use the stylus guard to protect the cartridge, regardless of it being an old one.

Now, disconnect the four lead-out wires present in the cartridge. Use may use the pliers to pull them. After this, undo the mounting bolts and remove the old cartridge.

Once done, use the supplied fixings to mount the new cartridge onto the arm. Tighten it only until the turntable doesn’t move. Next, connect the four lead-out wires to the pins behind the cartridge. Now, align the cartridge, and it’s ready!

What is the gain on the Ortofon 2m red cartridge?

Gain gets determined using a specific formula. When stated into word, it is decibel numbers equals 20-times the log of two voltages ratio. You will have to input the values of your specific turntable to calculate the gain. In case you are unable to do so, there are several gain calculators available online.

How to use Ortofon cartridge alignment protractor?

The Ortofon cartridge alignment protractor refers to a plastic template that displays printed null points and tangency lines. The cartridge must get aligned against it.

Its fundamental purpose is to identify the accurate distance from the stylus tip to the tonearm pivot. However, inappropriate usage of the protractor might result in an inaccurate distance. Here is how to use the protractor:

Place the template above the turntable’s spindle and place it against the platter.

Adjust cartridge until the cantilever is parallel to the set of parallel lines.

Once the longitudinal axis of the cartridge is parallel to horizontal lines, the tracking error will be at its minimum. Hence, offering the most accurate results.

Conclusion

Ortofon Cartridge

Now that you know about all the very best turntable cartridges manufactured by the most dedicated brand of all, i.e., Ortofon, we hope you’re able to find a cartridge that goes ideally with your turntable. However, if you still haven’t got a clear idea of what exactly do you require, then we would suggest you give Ortofon 2m Bronze Moving Magnet Cartridge.

Amongst all the models listed here, it is the best Ortofon Cartridge that meets universal needs. It’s compatible with a variety of turntables, so you won’t have to limit yourself to a certain model or a certain range of models.

Plus, it offers the widest frequency range of all, i.e., 20 Hz – 29,000 Hz. Hence, it’s capable of bringing forth the whole of the sound spectrum. Be it, faint sounds or high-pitched vocals. It delivers everything in its purest form and also without any hint of distortion.

Its output voltage may not be as good as Ortofon Concorde Mk2 Mix Twin Cartridge. But its nude elliptical diamond stylus, coupled with a fairly strong tracking force, helps it win the game!

Anyhow, the final decision is yours to make. Good luck!