Ortofon quintet vs. cadenza series

Would like to hear opinions of the relative merits/drawbacks of this series of Ortofon LOMC cartridges.

Really, you’d have to decide for yourself, but that won’t deter anyone from offering an opinion. It is quite often the case that $$$ and SQ are not proportional.

Haven’t tried Quintets yet but I can say the Cadenza Red and Bronze are excellent cartridges, with a very agreeable disposition for all types of music including rock. The Red was particularly fun with rock - lively, fast sounding with punchy bass. Bronze adds more warmth and body through the midrange. I first auditioned the Clearaudio Innovation line with a Red on an Innovation Compact (this was ~ 10 years ago) and it left a mark on me for sure. These Cadenzas also do very well with loud playback :)

Ortofons above this level are very good, BUT have a different personality and at times I find them a bit dry. In particular, I was not a fan of the Jubilee MC (predecessor of Cadenza Black) which uses their shibata-on-boron. OMG that cartridge almost bored me to death. I found both Windfelds above the Jubilee to be much more enjoyable, but there too I find their portrayal a bit austere for my tastes (I like carts like Koetsu). So I wouldn’t stress much about the Red "only" having a fine line on aluminum.

The Red strikes me as a good example of: "this is where MCs get good, and start to shine well above the 2M Black"

As an Ortofon dealer, the Cadenza Red is one of my favorites in whole Ortofon lineup.  To me, it has almost the perfect balance of slight warmth and detail, and is not super fussy about albums that are not perfect. And....it's not crazy expensive.