Today we are looking at what is the best low output moving coil cartridge. To be honest with you like I said in my THE BEST 5 HIGH OUTPUT MOVING COIL CARTRIDGES TO CONSIDER article. I am not actually getting hung up on the whole high output vs low output thing. I do not consider myself an “audiophile” I just class myself as someone that just loves good sound and who feels like they know good sound when they hear it. Anyway, check out videos like this “You don’t need a low output cartridge” video to get a better idea of the differences between high and low output cartridges for your turntable.
What I have for you today are a series of awesome moving coil cartridges that I feel are well worth considering if you are in the market for a new one or if you just want to treat yourself and upgrade the one you currently have. We are looking at all ends of the pricing spectrum here folks!
The 6 Best Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge Reviews
Here I have handpicked a few of the best cartridges that I feel we need to look at today. There is a mixture of ones that I have personally tested out and a few that I have not, but think look really cool!
1: Ortofon MC20 Super Fritz Gyger FG S Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge
2: Denon DL-301MK2 Moving Coil Phono Cartridge
3: Hana SL SH Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge
4: Ortofon Quintet Red Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge
5: Audio-Technica AT-OC9
6: Benz Micro Wood L2 low output moving coil cartridge
Ortofon MC20 Super Fritz Gyger FG S Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge
We are starting this thing off by looking at the Ortofon MC20 Super Fritz Gyger FG S Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge which I do have some experience with thanks to my buddy’s music store. I am a huge fan of what Ortofon do with their cartridges and they do have them at all ends of the pricing spectrum. This is one of their more expensive ones and this one here is priced at 850 bucks! However, this is a very premium kind of product and I felt it had to be on our best low output moving coil cartridge. I get a real kick out of the gold and black contrast when it comes to the colors and it will really pop when you have it installed on your turntable.
The very first album I heard played with this cartridge was Creed: Greatest Hits I will admit I am not a huge fan of Creed, but I love the song, My Sacrifice. Anyway, the song gave me chills man. The way it was so balanced, it was pretty much near perfect and I was completely blown away. My friend told me that he had been breaking this cartridge in for quite a while, but even when it was brand new, he was impressed by it. I think that if you truly want to hear your music the way the artists envisioned it, this cartridge is going to go above and beyond to make that a reality.
I know that the Ortofon MC20 Super Fritz Gyger FG S Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge is very expensive, but I can tell you right now, if I could buy this without getting a beating from the wife, I would do it in a heartbeat. The step up here from one of Ortofon’s more modestly priced (but still awesome) cartridges is massive! I am honestly having a hard time thinking of anything negative to say about this moving coil cartridge!
- I love the way it looks
- It has a very premium design and build quality
- I was blown away by the sound that this thing produced
- Some say that this is one of the best cartridges Ortofon offer!
- It is very expensive
- You may struggle to find one of these brand new
Denon DL-301MK2 Moving Coil Phono Cartridge
The Denon DL-301MK2 Moving Coil Phono Cartridge is a really cool cartridge and one that I knew had to make our best low output moving coil cartridge list. I have had the pleasure of testing out many Denon products over the years and this one here I have not yet had the pleasure to get my grubby hands on, but man does this have a great reputation online. The first thing that caught my eye was the design. This has that classic Denon style to it and I love the gold style of it, it kind of looks like something I could imagine Goldmember from Austin Powers: Goldmember which I say in jest, but also in a complimentary way. It is the kind of cartridge for those that want their cartridge to really pop and be a focal point of their turntable. It is just incredibly high-quality and the fact that you can get it for 450 bucks on Amazon is pretty damn awesome.
Now as I have not had the pleasure of testing this myself, I cannot say for sure how awesome it is in the sound department. However, I can tell you that the other Denon products I have tested have been great. Plus, you can check out this Denon DL-301 MKii mc cartridge and ATLP-7 video and get a good indication of what to expect. Plus, on Amazon right now, this thing has an 82 percent 4 and 5 star rating as I write this with many people being happy with how good it sounds.
From what I have read about the Denon DL-301MK2 Moving Coil Phono Cartridge I do feel it is worthy of being on this list. I will admit that it was the very groovy and eye-catching gold style of the cartridge that brought me to it. However, the more I have read about it, the more I have come to the impression that the sound quality is going to match the epicenes of the design!
- I think that 450 bucks is not a bad price at all
- I love the gold design of it
- The reception to this cartridge online seems to be mostly positive
- It is said to offer a very smooth and natural kind of sound
- As I said, I have not had the pleasure to try this out for myself
- While I dig the gold design, it may be a bit much for some people
Hana SL SH Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge
While I have not had the pleasure of looking at a ton of Hana products over the years, this Hana SL SH Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge caught my eye. The one that I found was being sold for a bit over 300 bucks and that is probably the price range where I would be comfortable if I am being honest with you. It is the black design of this that made me think this had to be on our list today. I love the way the Japanese writing looks on that black cartridge and while I think that some of the flashier characters that are available can grab your attention more. For my personal taste, I would much rather something a bit more laidback and stylish like this.
Now, the Hana SL SH Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge is not something I have used myself, but I did do some homework on this. What I have found is that at this kind or price range, this is actually one of the better low output moving coil cartridges around. This is designed to give you as perfect a connection as possible to your records so when you are listening to some Appetite for Destruction by Guns n Roses, which is now available in this awesome set with a bunch of extras by the way. You will be blown away by how real and raw the sound you are experiencing is. Of course, you will have to get this thing broken in just right
I know there is not really a great deal I can say about this as I have not managed to get one for review…. Yet! However, I still felt that it needed to make an appearance on our best low output moving coil cartridge list as it is very highly regarded. Plus, coming it at the price it is on eBay right now makes this even more attractive in my humble opinion.
- I like the design of it
- The white Japanese writing on the cartridge looks awesome
- It is said to give you a very real and balanced sound
- You can get this for close to 300 bucks which is a great price
- I wish I had the chance to test this out for myself
- It is one of the lower end cartridges on this list
Ortofon Quintet Red Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge
I actually had the pleasure of using the Ortofon Quintet Red Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge for a considerable amount of time and I was very impressed with it. I want to start with one of the most awesome aspects of this and that is the price, you are looking at 300 bucks right now if you were to buy this! I think even refurbished; this is a great price for a cartridge of this quality. It is also red and while I always prefer my audio equipment to be black. I think that Ortofon are one of, if not the best cartridge manufacturer when it comes to making them colorful, but not so much that they are obnoxious.
It was a little while back when I had the pleasure to play this, but I remember listening to Live At The Paramount by Nirvana and it was truly the best I had ever heard of this album. Smells Like Teen Spirit kicks so much ass when you hear it live and hearing it in the kind of clarity that you get with the aid of something like this makes you appreciate the band even more. Look, I am sure that some hardcore audiophile will be able to break down why this is not one of the greatest low output moving coil cartridges, but for me as a guy that just loves his music, this thing does everything that I want a cartridge that I am buying to upgrade the one that comes with my turntable to do!
As you can tell, I am very high on what the Ortofon Quintet Red Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge is offering. It looks cool, it feels very sturdy, and has a real premium kind of feel to it. However, it sounds fantastic and at this price range, in my opinion, this is very hard to beat, for 300 bucks you are well and truly getting a great cartridge!
- The asking price is fantastic
- This sounds amazing
- All kinds of music will sound great when played with this
- I love the design of the cartridge
- I can see why it may not be flashy enough for some people
- The red may be a bit “too much” for some people
How have we made it this far into our quest to find the best low output moving coil cartridge and not have one from Audio Technica show up? Well, the Audio-Technica AT-OC9, is something that is very special. To start with, we do have to address the elephant in the room and that is the insane price tag that you are seeing. This is listed on eBay at $1,200! That is insane and I am sure more than most people’s full setup. That makes this something that is just for the super-rich! However, the gold and black design of this really does make this look very high end and it is sure to be something that people who like shiny things think is really neat. I will admit that the way this thing looks is not my cup of tea, but I can see why it would appeal to some people.
Now, you may think with this costing as much as it does that, I would not have had the pleasure of trying this out. Well, my friends, you would be mistaken! I went to my friend’s music store and brought along with me a few albums such as the recently released (well as of writing) Patient Number 9 by the rock god that is Ozzy! My friend brought in a very rare and expensive turntable and it had this cartridge on it! We had it hooked up to a premium set of speakers as well and my goodness did it sound incredible. Crisp, crisp is probably the best word that I can use to describe just how epic this thing was. We ended up playing a ton of music through this and he said that he had many people in the store ask him about it!
One day if I win the lottery or marry someone rich (do not tell my wife I said that!) I am 100 percent getting this cartridge! It truly was a game changer for me and it just hit every note perfectly. We listened to rock, rap, jazz, and even some pop and it all sounded fantastic. This has to be how musicians envision their fans hearing their music.
- To say that this blew me away is a huge understatement!
- I am sure some people will love the gold and black design
- No matter what you listen to, it will sound awesome!
- I do not see how anyone could not notice an upgrade in what this offers!
- The price tag puts this out of reach for most people
- I am not super into the gold and back if I am being honest
Benz Micro Wood L2 low output moving coil cartridge
We are ending this with a really weird one and one that I would love to check out and that is the Benz Micro Wood L2 low output moving coil cartridge The wood in the name of this is not some kind of gimmick. It is actually made with wood (and plastic of course) and it gives this a very unique kind of design that makes it very interesting looking. If you have a turntable like the Audio-Technica AT-LPW30TK for example that has a real wooden design to it, I am sure that something like this would compliment this very well. Although if you are dropping over a grand on a cartridge, I am sure you probably have a much higher-end turntable than this.
Now, I cannot say for sure what the sound quality you are going to get with this. However, I did find this BB King_ Linn LP12_ Graham 1.5 & NEW Benz Micro Wood video that gave me a better appreciation and understanding of what to expect from something with the Benz name on it. I am really impressed with this thing and my buddy is on notice that if he gets his hands on this, he has to call me so I can come and check it out. Yes, this is for a very specific kind of person, but there is no denying that this thing is so cool.
Look, as I have not tested this, I cannot for sure say that it sounds amazing, but the homework I did on this did make it seem like it is something incredible. If you are someone that can throw down this kind of money on a cartridge, I do feel that this one here has to make your shortlist.
- I like the wooden design of this
- From what I have read online, it provides a very real kind of sound
- It is premium in every sense of the word
- It looks very cool
- That asking price is pretty damn high that is for sure
- I really wish I could tell you more about the way it sounds
Which Is The Best Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge?
I will be real with you guys, I am having a hard time picking a winner here. Ok, so I say that, but truth be told, if I could get any of these and money was no object it would be the Audio-Technica AT-OC9. It was so, so amazing and the best out of the bunch, but it also costs a fortune! There is no way the average Joe should be spending this much money on just a cartridge! With that being said, I actually think the one I would go for right now would be the Ortofon Quintet Red Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge. The Ortofon MC20 Super Fritz Gyger FG S Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge is fantastic too, but I just do not see it being worth all that extra money. So yeah, if I had to say which one I feel offers the best value for money and which one is taking the prize of being the best low output moving coil cartridge, it would have to be the Ortofon Quintet Red Low Output Moving Coil Cartridge.