3 Things to Know About Audio-Technica Turntable Cartridges
Headquartered in Tokyo, Audio-Technica was founded in 1962 as a maker of cartridges for turntables. You can find cartridges and other audio equipment, like turntables, microphones, and headphones, from this company. If you need a replacement cartridge for your turntable, there are some things to keep in mind to make sure you choose the right one.What are some features of Audio-Technica turntable cartridges?
All Audio-Technica turntable cartridges use magnetic technology. These cartridges are designed for a variety of uses. Some models are appropriate for home use, and some are designed for use by professional DJs. Some of the differences between the models include the mount type, materials used, and the type of magnet-and-coil formation. Here are some more details about the features Audio-Technica uses to provide quality audio output:
- Mount type: Audio-Technica makes cartridges with a variety of mounts for use with different styles of tonearms. P-mount cartridges feature four terminals at the back, and they plug in. Half-inch mounts also have four terminals, and these must be connected to wires. The advantage of 1/2-inch mounts is that they're adjustable. Universal mounts are P-mount cartridges with 1/2-inch adapters.
- Materials: Each cartridge is made of different materials. Some feature aluminum cantilevers, while others use materials like boron. Additionally, the terminals in the mount can be formed from a variety of metals. Brass is often used for its excellent conductivity.
- Magnetic technology: All cartridges use magnets and coils to create an electromagnetic field. The two most common types of setups include moving-magnet and moving-coil setups. For moving-magnet cartridges, the magnet is on a cantilever between two fixed coils. Moving-coil cartridges feature fixed magnets and moving coils. These are more complicated mechanically but tend to produce better sound quality. These cartridges also tend to be lighter in weight.
There are many different reasons for using phono cartridges. Some people use their turntables to listen to music at home, and some people need studio-quality sound for DJing gigs. Audio-Technica makes a variety of options for all types of users from professionals to hobbyists.What are some common models of Audio-Technica turntable cartridges?
- AT-95EX: This moving-magnet cartridge features a 1/2-inch mount. It's known for low distortion and good channel separation. The stylus can be replaced separately from the cartridge.
- AT-OC9ML/II: This moving-coil cartridge attaches with a 1/2-inch mount. Dual coils allow for great channel separation. The cantilever is made of gold-plated, solid boron.
- AT-ART9: This moving-coil cartridge features a 1/2-inch mount with brass terminals. The whole cartridge must be replaced when the stylus wears out.
- AT-XP7: Designed for DJs, this 1/2-inch-mount cartridge features a double-layered rubber damper and aluminum cantilever. The stylus tip is highly visible, which comes in handy for working DJs.