Sumiko Blue Point No. 2 Cartridges

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Sumiko Blue Point No. 2 Cartridges 

DESCRIPTION

phono cartridge high-output moving-coil design,frequency response: 15-25,000 Hz

USER REVIEWS

Showing 1-2 of 2  
[Dec 17, 2012]
dmorgan
Audio Enthusiast

Due to the difficulties associated with replacing the stylus on my 25 year old Shure V15 Type V MR I decided to take the jump into moving coil cartridges. I was interested in comparable products from Dynavector and Ortofon, but when a deal came open on a Blue Point 2, I went for it. After having the Sumiko professionally installed in my Thorens TD160 I began the cartridges breaking in process, and having now crossed the 100 hour threshold am ready to report my impressions.
Having never spent time with a moving coil design I was immediately taken by the transient response that having a lighter cantilever structure affords; the speed and slam of drum beats and finger popped bass have the attack I'd come to associate with digital sources. The midrange has an effortless openness with voices and acoustic instruments presented very neutrally. Highs are crystalline and tight, without being overly bright. However, I was initially disappointed with the Blue Point 2s low end. Perhaps I'd grown spoiled by my V15s full, tight, pronounced bass response, but still... The Sumikos low bass was described by two separate co-listeners as flabby - it's there, but boomy and indistinct. And the upper bass could only be described as regressive. The bass lines of Paul McCartney, or Peter Hook of Joy Division, or that cool black guy in the Doobie Brothers would kind of disappear into the background as they worked their way up the scale. The image presented by this cartridge was stable, but with no depth, and very little sound stage around the speakers.
Major changes seemed to occur in the sound of the Sumiko Blue Point 2 for me at around 40 hours, when the nature of the sound loosened up considerably adding soundstage, and at 80 hours when the upper bass was brought forward into balance with the rest of its output. Low bass is still indistinct and muddy. The sound of this cartridge is now even more open and spacious, with wonderful presentation of instrumental timbre, though still lacking depth of image. There is also a lack of inner detail that most likely comes from its basic elliptical stylus tip. This is another area where I was spoiled by my Shure with its Micro Ridge tip, and is the obvious benefit of working your way up the moving coil price point to models that feature such Shibata tip derivatives. By combining the compellingly natural presentation of a moving coil design with the precise inner detail that being able to pull information from deeper in the records groove provides I would truly be blown away.
Pros: reasonable price, openness and neutrality of midrange, bright and tight highs.
Cons: low bass indistinct, lack of inner detailing and depth of image.

OVERALL
RATING
4
VALUE
RATING
4
[Oct 05, 2006]
frogsong
Audio Enthusiast

Strength:

Very transparent, accurate reproduction including powerful, tight bass response

Weakness:

There are cheaper cartridges that perform almost this well (perhaps the Grado Gold)

This is a high output moving coil cartridge that can drive the input stage of an ordinary phono preamp. I have this cartridge mounted in a Pro-Ject RM-5 turntable which is also new. I have been listening to music played with the blue point and can say that it delivers a remarably transparent sound with a terrific sound stage. As the cartrdige wears in, my equipment is going away and I am left with the music. Very nice indeed. When brand new the Blue Point was somewhat harsh sounding, but that went away after about 12 hours. The highs are crystaline, the mid range is dreamy and the bass is tight, but powerful. Of course the cartridge is just the begining of the signal path. The system I listened to includes Acurus phono/preamp and power amp and biwired Mission 774 speakers. If you enjoy listening to "serious" music (Jazz, Classical, choral, etc) you should look at this cartridge.

OVERALL
RATING
5
VALUE
RATING
4
Showing 1-2 of 2  

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