Currently manufactured Pickups - Pfanstiehl to 47 Labs

Makes the P-132-D cartridge, unusually for a magnetic cart it has a flip-over stylus to enable it to play both LP/45's and 78'rpm's, note this is a standard mount unit and not a .

Makes 2 MM designs in the form of the Life and Chiave, they also have a moving coil design in the form of the Flair, these are all based around Ortofon designs, the Flair being a V series derivatve and there may be a variant of the Chiave available called Chiave-Spezial that has a Linn like 3 point fastening system.

Make a range of low to mid price MM carts for both home and DJ/broadcast use, for info on some of their more recently discontinued models see this page.

Pluto Audio
Makes the Pluto Mk. III pickup.

Has started selling the K4 and K6 MM pickups, these are manufactured for them by Grado and both feature an elliptical stylus.

Red Rose Music
Makes the Rose Petal a high end low output cart.

Makes a range of mid end MM pickups, namely the Bias, the Superbias, Elys, Super Elys and Exact MM designs, the exact has a Vital line contact stylus and a unusually high output for such a cart, note that despite rumours these carts are actually made by Rega themselves, note also that unlike most other such pickups the Rega range does not have user replaceable stylii, this is apparently done in the interest of stiffness. More recently the company has introduced its first moving coil design in the form of the high end Apheta that retails for just a shade under USD 1700 in the USA and uses the linn 3 point mounting system.

Designs and sells a line of mid to high end pickups that have been getting good reviews, these include the Mica and Reca mid/high end MM cartridges, the Aicore and Elite mid range MC's and the Lexe high end MC that has coils made out of Neodymium and is wound with silver wires, you can read a review of that cart by reviewed by Hi-Fi+. The Reson One has been reviewed by TNT and the Lece has been The actual product is assembled by Goldring but are not 100% compatible you cannot in some cases use a Goldring stylii with the MM pickups for instance, all of their carts with the exception of the Mica have a Gyger S stylus (the Mica has a Gyger II). Note that these carts are often sold as DNM in the UK and have a cult-like following there.

Manufactures the Shiraz moving coil and Corus moving magnet pickups, those are mid to high end models, and the Corus Black which is a modified Goldring design.

Sells a couple of models of Moving Coil pickups that are simply called MC-Scheu, both are nude models designed and manufactured in association with Benz Micro, the original model referred to as the MC-Scheu Standard is based around the Benz Micro Glider L cart but has a silver wound coil and a Gyger S stylus and is usually shipped in a mid output variant that has an output of 1,6 mV but can also be had in a low output version that puts out 0,35 mV, both retail for around 780 € or so. A more recent addition is a model based around the Benz Micro Ruby 2 that does not appear to have a specific name, it costs about twice what the standard model does. The Standard models has been favourably reviewed by TNT-Audio. THey have also resently introduced a low end MM design simply called MM-System.

Makes a line of high end moving coil pickups, the mid priced 501 Mk II is by far the best known and is considered to be something of a bargain amongst the Japanese high end carts, particularly in the USA were many consider it to be one of the best in the world although the usual caveats apply. The 401 is a low output model that features an open bottomed casing and has an elliptical stylus, an aluminium cantilever and the generator is made out of Samarium Cobalt and iron, it's strong points lie in the midrange which is life like and well presented. The next model up is the901 which is a real high end model at just over 2 times as expensive as the 501 and shares with it the exact same audio specifications and casing with the exception that the fastening holes are threaded, it does however have a stronger magnet which makes it the pickup about a gram heavier and improves the sound in the top end in particular and it has a slightly higher output, you can read a review of the 901 here and a for user review here. The recently introduced 90x is the company's most expensive pickup and has a new generator based around Neodymium magnet, the audio specifications of this model is actually not as good as the company's other pickups but according to reports it does sound considerably better, in particular the bass response is enhanced. Like with so many specialist Japanese MC carts the stylus of the 90x is still an elliptical rather than a line contact variant although the cantilever is tapered, it appears that the preference for simple and often tonearms over there calls for a stylus profile that does not require a complex setup.

Shure Inc.
Were at one time the biggest pickup maker in the world but now just manufactures a small line of moving magnet cartridges that include 2 home audio models and a few intended for the DJ market. Top of the line is the classic M97xE mid end pikup which features the same damping system as the good old Shure V15VxMR but has a simpler generator and an elliptical stylus, the other home model is the P-mount M92E but that model has been reviewed by the US based Consumer Review here and also availabe in a variant called M78S which is a the same model with a stylus intended for playing 78 Rpm. records with, note that both models come with an adapter that allows it to be fitted onto a standard 1/2" mount, more info on the M92E here and the M78S here. Further down the range you can find the M94E that has been reviewed by TNT here that model is also avaialbe in a P mount version, further down you'll find the shperical stylii equiped M 44 GX and M 44-7X along with their buget models the M 70 bX and M 92 E, their cheapest model is the M 75-6 and you can get that model as the M 75-3 with a stylus for the playback of 78'rpm records and the improved M 77-S also with a 78 stylus. DJ models from the company include the Whitelabel which is their top of the line DJ cart and is actually a combination of a high output pickup and headshell, it's not a integrated unit but rather a pickup mounted in a custom headshell, that means less rigitiy but has a simple and clever mechanism allows for easy ajustment of stylus overhang. The SC 35 C DJ that you can also get in a kit with 2 pickups and 2 stylii, the M 44 G DJ, M 44-7 DJ and the classic M 35 S.

The Whitelabel technical specification are : Generator Type : MM. Mount : Ortofon. Frequency response : 20Hz~20KHz. Output @ 5cm/s : 6mV @ 1KHz. Tracking force : 1,5 to 3 grams. Recommended tracking force : 2 grams. Stylus tip : Spherical. Equivalent stylus tip mass : . Cantilever : . Estimated stylus lifetime :Weight : grams. Replacement stylus part # Original RRP : .

Sells the Ebony moving coil design, it's actually manufactured for them by Benz Micro and is based upon the Benz Micro Ruby 3 but is housed in African ebony wood which has better resonance characteristics than metals or plastics, has a slightly higher output and is heavier at 10.7 grams.

Makes a range of MM pickups including the budget Oyster that sounds excellent if a little "Japanese", slightly more expensive is the Black Pearl, the Pearl. The Blue Point however is a bargain priced MC and is also available as the Blue Point Special and you can read a review by Hi-Fi Choice here, the company also has the Blue Point Limited and the high end Premier SHO. The Celebration Pearwood Signature is reviewed here.

Symphonic Line
Makes a high end Moving Coil pickup.

Primarily a manufacturer of replacement styli, but they also design and sell a range of DJ pickups including the dirt cheap Backtrack and a model based around the Ortofon Concorde that is called the Banana, it has an integrated headshell but and a Tonar stylus used on both of those models has a reputation for being excellent for back cueing and scratching (to do with the cantilever/stylus assembly ?). You can also get the Bactrack in a kit with 2 pickups and 3 stylii. Nb. those models are sometimes sold in the US as American DJ.

Mainly occupied with upgrading third party cartridges, but he has at the least one design under his own name that are actually commercial designs that he had modified, the designs he chooses vary from time to time, a couple of years a go they were mostly Linn designs but currently he seems fo favour Benz Micro.

A Japanese manufacturer of high end yokeless MC pickups, the company has no homepage but you can find more info on their products on the homepages of their distributors (follow the link above) but note that not all distributors carry the full line of their products. The cheapest model the company manufactures is the RE, m here and here, models include the Spirit high end low output model now in a Mk3 version, a high output version of it called Espirit and the top of the line . Review of the Transfiguration Spirit from Hi-Fi Plus is to be found here.

Tubaphon See --> Einstein/Tubaphon Pickups

Van Den Hul
The inventors of the "Van De Hul" stylii that made waves in the early 80's, make a large range of high end MC pickups. Their cheapest model is a mid range design named DDT 2 special but better known are the Frog and the Frog Gold and the ultra high end Black Beauty Special X, the Colibri Special-XM and the Colibri Special-X.

US store Radio Shack sells ceramic designs from this company .

Has a range of MM pickups with stylii cut for DJ and broadcast use, more info here.

Wilson Benesch
Makes 3 pickups , the Matrix, the Carbon a low output moving coil with a body made out of woven carben fibre nude elliptical and the Analog. And no, I have no idea why an English company uses American spelling.....

Win Research
Makes the SMC-10 low output moving coil.

Makes a line of mid to high end moving coil pickups that are probably best described as a smooth sounding low output devices with a sound that can almost be described as an upgraded version of that classic Japanese broadcast pickup sound (Neat, AT 33 and Denon 103 et. al.), this company used to manufacture the Monster Cable Pickups and there is indeed a family resemblance as far as the sound goes but the modern models are appreciably better. All of their pickups are available in a high output version referred to by the addition of a H to the end of the cartridges name, this is not a high output version in the conventional meaning of the term, the normal (or low output) version of the pickup puts out 0,24 mV, the H version puts out twice that or 0,48mV, this is nowhere enough to drive a standard phonographic input directly but does however increase the compatibility in the sense that there are plenty of Moving coil preamplifiers and transformers out there that will handle half a millivolt but will struggle with anything less, in particular there are a lot of transformers with 24dB gain that are compatible with the H but not with the standard version, note also that on the RS line of pickups you pay a premium for the H versions but on the upmarket R line the H and L versions are priced the same. For some further info on the design methodology behind the ZYX line you can read this article by Nakatsuka-san but the company's real claim to fame is their unique coil winding technology which enables them to wind in 2 directions at the same time thus creating a coil that has a more balanced channel output than the normal MC.

The RS 02 line of pickups is the company's cheapest models but are stationed price wise firmly in the mid end, basically the RS line all feature the same generator and thus share the same electrical specifications but differ in cantilever and stylus assembly. The RS-10 02 features an the elliptical stylus and aluminuim/magnesium alloy cantilever and is also available in a high output version as the RS 10 H that is some 5% dearer than the normal version. The RS 20 02 is only slightly more expensive than the RS-10 02 but features a line contact stylus and a diamond cantilever versus, the RS 20-02H is the high output version but it shuld be noted that it is more than 10% more expensive than the L version. The RS 30 02 is the top of the RS range and features a Microridge line contact stylus and a Boron cantilever, the high output version is the RS 30 02 H. The R 100 Series is next up in line but that line replaced the original R 100 models in 2003 or thereabouts, the "basic" R 100 02 has a stunning (unweighted) audio specification of 10Hz~80KHz FR, it is also available in a high output version as the R 100 02H, other variants of the R 100 line are the R-100 FS Fuji and the recently introduced R-100 FX Fuji variant, both cost the same have an upgraded coil piece versus the "plain" R 100 02 and both are available in a H and L versions at the same price, the FS version features coil windings made out of silver wire while the rest of the R 100 line uses 6N pure copper wire, the FX features a housing made out of crystal and bronze, very dapper.

The company's high end R 1000 MkII line has an eye opening FR specs of 10Hz~100kHz, the R 1000 Airy2S, R-1000 Airy2 Cosmos S and their high output variants R 1000 Airy2SH and the R 1000 Airy2 Cosmos SH feature the same silver wound coils as the R 100 FS while the R 1000 Airy2X and R 1000 Airy2XH feature a coil wound out of copper wire but all of them feature an improved generator design versus the R 100 series and utilise wire that has been put through a cryogenic process, the Airy models were replaced with the MkII versions in late 2004 but the company still has not updated the technical specification brochure to include the newer Airy models when this was written in early 2005 so it's impossible to gauge what exactly changed. Their top of the range models are the R 1000σ don't even ask about the price, it's hovering somewhere close to the 10000 € mark, they are available as the silver coiled R 1000 Sigma S and R 1000 Sigma SH or with copper wound coils as R 1000 Sigma X and the R 1000 Sigma XH, all of those have had the coil wires cryogenically treated and feature a solid diamond cantilever but otherwise share the specifications of the "basic" R 1000.

Note that the company replaced their entire line RS line and the basic R 100 model in 2003 with MkII versions but there are still some MkI versions in the channel and we have seen some MkI models being offered as the latter versions, the MkII models of the RS line have MkII clearly marked on the packaging and usually have a 02 printed on the front of the pickup so you should be in no doubt as to which is which while the MkII versions of the R 100 series are marked as such on the packaging they are not marked as such on the body but can be differentiated from the older models by the fact that the 02 models feature a black plastic body while the original models had bodies made out of clear plastic. Note also that the company also sell weights that can be added to the top of the cart for those tonearms that need it.

47 Laboratory
Makes a high end MC cartridge in association with Myabi (it's not 100% the same as the Myabi cart itself NB), coils are made out of AlNiCo. Stereotimes has reviewed the cart along with the RIAA preamp from the same company and Enjoy the music has also reviewed the cart.

Next Page : Discontinued Pickups

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The site was last compiled on Sun Nov 10 2013 at 9:15:00am