SoundSmith Carmen MkII High-Output Phono Cartridge.
Now at True Audiophile
Trying to find a solid line of cartridges that allow an audiophile to reach a higher level of performance without the price penalty has been an incredible challenge. After years of listening to just about every line of cartridges we are confident SoundSmith fulfills that criteria. --TA
"The Soundsmith Carmen's ultra-low-mass MI assembly plays with more agility, is more naturally detailed, and sounds less stressed than any MC I'm aware of. Its treble is not dull or rolled off—it's just the most authentic treble I've experienced from a phonographic transducer." - Herb Recihert, Stereophile
Created out of the desire to make a very high performance design at an affordable price, the Carmen was crafted to have unparalleled purity of tone and ultra-smooth presentation. Just slightly lush with a well-developed midrange, the Carmen is surprisingly pleasing and will seduce you into long, late listening sessions.
The stylus used is a large part of what makes it special; an ultra-low mass occlusion free nude diamond cut and polished into a true hyper-elliptical shape. The combination of low tip mass and the Fixed Coil design gives the Carmen a tremendous resolution advantage over MC designs selling for more than twice the price. Housed in a handmade solid Ebony case, the Carmen delivers.
Also available in dual-coil mono.
Cartridge Type: Fixed Coil
Stylus Type: Elliptical
Output Voltage: 2.12 mV
Available As Dual Coil Mono: Yes
Stylus: Nude Elliptical, 0.120mm SQ
Radius of curvature: 6 x 17 μm
Cantilever: Aluminum Alloy
Recommended tracking force: 1.3 - 1.6 gm (standard medium Compliance); 1.0 - 1.2 grams for special order High Compliance
Effective tip mass: 0.35 mg
Compliance: 28 μm/mN (high), 22 μm/mN (medium)
Frequency response: 20-20,000 Hz ± 2.5 dB
Channel separation (stereo only): 1000 Hz >26 dB, 50-15,000 >20 dB
Channel difference: <1.6 dB (Stereo), <1.0 dB (Mono)
Output voltage: 2.12 mV
Cartridge weight: 6.8 grams
Loading: ≥ 47 kΩ