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Ortofon 2M Mono Phono Cartridge

2 Reviews

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"The 2M Mono is a truly exceptional transducer. The sound from this true-mono cartridge just blows away the sound you get from a mono-via-stereo cartridge setup. Because the mono cartridge only deals with the groove signal in a single plane, the resultant sound is impressively quiet compared to the modulation of surface noise and groove geometry shortcomings you often must deal with in playback of mono sources from a stereo cartridge. The end result is that you can really hear very deeply into the music; the 2M Mono sounded magnificent right out of the box, and has only gotten better as it's broken in." - Positive Feedback

Design Elements

The 2M Series is developed in conjunction with the Danish Industrial designer Møller Jensen Design – the same designer who designed the award winning MC Jubilee and Kontrapunkt series. Inspired by the facets of a diamond, whose contours gracefully trace the grooves on a record’s surface, the 2M’s handsome elegance establishes a great combination of form and functionality.

The name 2M was selected from among several ideas. We wanted a modern name that would be easy to pronounce and remember, and therefore an alphanumerical name was chosen. 2M means MM, which is the abbreviation for moving magnet. Of course the 2M isn’t just another pretty face. It has been engineered to the highest standards and is congruent with Ortofon’s unrelenting commitment to providing the most precise and accurate reproduction possible without coloration.

Ortofon 2M Sonics

The 2M series of cartridges feature Ortofon’s trademark split-pole pins, an invention that enables moving-magnet cartridges to have a flat frequency response, as with a moving-coil cartridge. Split-pole pins were invented by Ortofon, and were originally presented in the 500 and OM Super series. We have optimized the design for ease of mounting the cartridge, and the weight and size to fit the most common turntables on the market today. The 2M Series provides excellent compatibility when used in an assortment of playback systems and with a wide variety of phono preamps.A briefing on each...
  • 2M Mono SE, 2M Mono and 2M 78 are a true mono cartridges for playing mono vinyl records
  • 2M Red is an all-purpose cartridge that delivers open, dynamic sound with a touch of warmth
  • 2M Blue adds more dynamics and resolution, sounds more open and reproduces more detail
  • 2M Bronze adds even more detail and resolution but in a very even-handed, transparent fashion
  • 2M Black is the best in all aspects - impeccable resolution and accurate insight into each recording
  • Features:
  • Improved engine, provides a high level of sonic accuracy
  • R 18µm Nude Spherical stylus that is an optimal solution for playing mono microgroove LP vinyl records
  • 2M Mono uses a strapped output to deliver the same output signal from both sets of pole pins, which effectively eliminates the need for mono-specific equipment, making it possible to enjoy true mono reproduction on any stereo playback system
  • Technical:
  • Output voltage at 1000 Hz, 5cm/sec.: 4 mV
  • Frequency range at - 3dB: 20-22.000 Hz
  • Frequency response: 20-20.000 Hz + 3 / - 1 dB
  • Tracking ability at 315Hz at recommended tracking force: 70 µm
  • Compliance, dynamic, lateral: 18 µm/mN
  • Stylus type: Nude Spherical
  • Stylus tip radius: R18 µm
  • Tracking force range: 1,6-2,0g (16-20 mN)
  • Tracking force, recommended: 1,8 g (18 mN)
  • Tracking angle: 20°
  • Internal impedance, DC resistance: 700 Ohm
  • Internal inductance: 350 mH
  • Recommended load resistance: 47 kOhm
  • Recommended load capacitance: 150-300 pF
  • Cartridge colour, body/stylus: Black/White
  • Cartridge weight without screws: 7,2 g
  • Replacement stylus unit - 2M Mono (interchangeable with 2M 78)
  • Package Contents:
  • 1 x Stylus brush
  • 1 x Screwdriver
  • 2 x Screw M2,5 x 5
  • 2 x Screw M2,5 x 7
  • Ratings & Reviews

    2 reviews

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    Thanks to the previous review for convincing me I needed this. I don't need to add to his thorough review. I am amazed at how true to life real mono sounds when done right. I got this for the new Beatles box in mono, but I was surprised at how many records I have that benefit from a dedicated mono cartridge. If you are like me and have a sizable collection of mono LPs, then just bite the bullet and get this.

    Jimmy Jet


    I hemmed and hawed about dropping over 300 bills for a mono cartridge, but after doing tons of research, I came to the conclusion this was really the only option on the market for me and my increasingly growing mono collection of 1960 – 1970 records. Simply put, to properly play mono recordings from this era, you need a .7 mil tip (preferably spherical), a single generator to pick up only on the horizontal plane, a stylus that still has vertical compliance even though it does not have a generator for the vertical plane, and will work well with a S type tonearm on a direct drive table. This cartridge meets all of the above criteria. I went ahead and ordered it along with a new Ortofon headshell. I set it up tonight with the correct overhang specified for my unit and preferred tracking at 1.8 grams. I’ll try to keep it short, but WOW. First impressions: huge jump in volume, tighter bass, clearer vocals without distortion on loud passages, and crisper highs. Previously, for my near mint mono records, I was playing them with my AT 440MLa cartridge and they sounded quite good with huge bass and crisp high end, but rather scooped mids – vocals could be distorted on loud passages, e.g., Mick’s voice on Stones early London recordings. For my less than near mint mono records, a Grado Prestige Gold cartridge was being used with a warmer sound and subduing the pops and clicks from any scratches, but the high end wasn’t as crisp as the 440 and the loud vocals were even more distorted. This Ortofon M2 Mono keeps the big bass from the 440, but tightens it up; gives more high end, just as crisp as the 440, but seems louder; cleans up distortion in the vocal range; presents more mids than either the 440 or Grado, yet keeps it balanced with the big bass and crisp treble (the only recording it presented way too much midrange on was the Byrds album [with Turn, Turn, Turn – Columbia mono] – this may be the way it was recorded, but I never noticed it with the 440). As sick as I am of Ruby Tuesday [Between the Buttons, London mono maroon lable], I was too lazy to get up off the couch, but for the first time I could hear the resin on the bow rub across the strings of the cello! (I used to play cello in school.) Then, at one point, you can hear something that sounds like either the cellist makes two false starts or hits the bow on the strings twice (in time) before coming back in on his part… this took my breath away. Then I moved on to new mono releases, Hendrix Axis on Track records, 180g mono vinyl and being remastered and cut with tubes in the entire re-cutting chain, that’s what you hear: pure, smooth, silky, and warm tubes oozing with power and in your face Hendrix playing in your house… Sundazed’s Donavan, Wear Your Love Like Heaven, quietist vinyl I’ve ever heard as far as the noise floor, as in CD quiet, very warm, full spectrum and tube sounding. Sundazed’s Jefferson Airplane, After Bathing at Baxters, very cool, different mix of Martha, has a different bass line than the stereo version – the psychedelic party scene still sounds like stereo until I figured out what was going on: instead of panning left to right, they panned the phasing from bass to treble – even though this is a mono record, it still has a 3D sound stage – unbelievable! Oh, I forgot one of my original mono’s, and it’s one of the best high fidelity mono records I have: a near mint Kinks on Kink Kontraversy on the the tri-colored mono Reprise label – beautifully balanced throughout the frequency spectrum. If you like early Stones and Kinks, you HAVE to get the mono vinyl – the stereo mixes are trash (no bass, all mids, and the Kinks especially, have some sort of echoey/reverb added and it’s just mud). Okay – I think you got the idea… I’m in love with this cartridge and how much life it’s brought to both my historic as well as mono reissue records. If you are into mono, the Ortofon M2 Mono is worth the 3 bills – while it may hurt to place the order, you’ll soon forgot about it when you start listening to your mono collection – it will be like listening to new recordings and you’ll discover things you never noticed before. (Just a heads up – the Ortofon booklet only instructs you how to mount the cartridge on the headshell and doesn’t give the specs or tracking force, and I incorrectly thought I had read that the tracking force should be 1.5g and the first few songs were kind of shrill – I went back to the specs here on the Needle Doctor about this cart and saw that the recommended tracking should be 1.8g, so I re-calibrated for 1.8, and it made a huge difference!).