Second MC Cartridge Choice.....Tokyo

So I am looking for a second (no 3rd) cartridge for my system....which is comprised of a Kuzma Stabi S12 w/12" 313 arm......currently running the Airtight PC-7 on it.

My other table is a Luxman PD 151 with an MM cartridge (Sumiko Amethyst) and I want to get an MC for it as well. I was thinking along the lines of the inro MSL but then wondered if maybe I would  be better off with Audio Technica Art OC9a or OC9i?

Also wondered if anyone has heard the new Hana Blue Umami?

I am going to Tokyo for an extended work trip and hoped I could find something there at an advantageous price. I am open to other suggestions.

Almost exclusively listen to jazz....lots of horns and such.

I use a Modwright PH 9.0 fed into Dennis Had tube gear and sometimes switch out to a 2a3 FI-X. While I love detail it is an organic sound I am after.....with a liquid mid-range.


thanks for any thoughts.



@rwanda , You were on the right path to begin with. MSL cartridges are at the apex of performance. There is no need to look further unless you want to look at Lyras or very expensive Ortofons. 

@rwanda have heard several tines now 2 different MSL cartridges, just wonderful. But if you are looking for more of a "organic sound" I'd be looking at a Koetsu cartridge. Just a thought

Thank you rsf507,

I thought these might be a bit too laid back....hence my thinking on the MSL.


Anyone have thoughts on the AT  Art OC9 ??

Guess I mean the AT-ART9 Dual Moving Coil Cartridge, not the OC9 series...a bit confusing.

Yodibashi Camera in the Akihabara district of Tokyo sell MSL right off the shelf.  Last time I was there, they had a wide array of MSL cartridges in stock.  They also discount the Japanese VAT and give an additional discount for using a CC.

I am looking to experience MSL Cart's and at some point a Mutech Hayabusa.

I have seen a report from a very experienced individual, who has the experience of using TOTR Cart's from many Brands.

There is an assessment offered that suggests the Hayabusa offers a extremely close comparison the MSL, without needing to extend to the monies required to buy the MSL Cart's.

It might be worth your while to have a look to see if the Hayabusa can create has a attraction for meeting your needs.  

I don't have an direct experience but I'm personally very interested in Etsuro and they seem hard to get in the US - you might have better luck in Japan

You might also want to look into the Benz cartridge line up the Gullwing, or Glider series are very good, you might also want to try the EMT audio cartridges.

@rwanda I have an AT-ART9XI in my Rega P6 and a Skyanalog G-2 in my Technics SL 1210GR.  The ART9XI is exceptionally transparent.  It really doesn't color the music much at all.  Dynamics, presence, clarity and magic are all improved over streaming and lesser cartridges.  However, the ART9XI isn't laid back.  It is lively and a little bright but not harsh.  In contrast the Skyanalog G-2 (still only 13 hours on it) is somewhat colored with very strong bass and mid-range but highs are a bit rolled off. The G-2 is more euphonic and in photo terms I would say it is adding saturation and vibrance, the ART9XI seems more analytical.  Both seem like exceptional cartridges to me within their price points.  I haven't been able to choose between them yet.


Good. I was looking at the Bordeaux before I bought the Aidas from you but could not get one at the time - a decision I enjoy immensely everyday!

Ortofon SPU Royal N for sheer musicality and enjoyment and with the saving buy a Kuzma 4 Point to replace the 313.

Well , if in japon take a look at ZYX :-)

Imagine price is alot better there..

By the way, hana umami blue probably won't show until late summer ( my dealer says)

FWIW, you can’t buy the top end ZYX in Tokyo, the Universe and its descendants, at least you couldn’t 2 years ago. They’re marketed via the US distributor, Mehran, on the West Coast. All other ZYXs were available though.

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Now I finally have my four carts in operation, I do find myself trying all sorts of things on the cheapest one of the four, as the sound is addictive. That would be the MP-500.

Maybe addictiveness is exactly the wrong metric, as perhaps it implies the cartridge is adding something I like, and I'm not listening to whatever theoretical uncontaminated sound was in the groove. Yet no sound gets off the groove without a cartridge, and hence there is no uncontaminated sound. I don't know. I just know I'm happy to put mono LPs under the mono MC, classical LPs under the stereo MC, jazz, folk and rock under the MP-500, and anything deserving of an especially close listen under the Decca Reference. No doubt I'm doing it all wrong, but I don't care as long as I like it!

If you cannot buy a top ZYX in Tokyo, Sibatech may distributing there locally, then another good alternative would be Etsuro Urushi Bordeaux or Gold.

@dogberry Liking, Enjoying and Wanting to Maintain are my own Goals.

lt does seem you are blessed with increased choices to enable a adherence to all the above within your own system.

Certainly nothing seen to be wrong from my observation.

ok so I have decided I would really like to get a My Sonic Lab Eminent EX cartridge and I have other question. I know it will be a great fit on my Kuzma Ref 313 arm but I am intending to use it on a Luxman PD 151 which has a Jelco arm...any thoughts or experiences? thanks in advance for everyone's input

“While I love detail it is an organic sound I am after.....with a liquid mid-range.“

This does rather point to an SPU, does the Luxman have, or can you add,  enough counterweight to balance one? The Royal N was suggested above and of the cartridges I own I think it’s my favourite, you’d be looking at the G series though.

I don’t have an MSL, though I heard a few when I took my Transfiguration Proteus for rebuilding at Ana Might Sound in Paris and they were rather good.