Originally Posted by Skylab
The DL110 is a significantly better cartridge than the 2M Red. The DL-110 is a high output moving coil, so any MM phono stage will work.
The DL110 is surprisingly good for the money and will not loose too much ground to anything. It may not have the finesse of the top carts that cost many times over, what it does offer is a very realistic reproduction of space ( if it was recorded in the first place ) that is a typical hallmark of MC. Most MM carts, but not all, will struggle in this regard, and although I did never audition 2M Red properly, what I have heard did not "wow" me in any special way.
There is a reason Denon DL 103 ( sadly no longer D version ) and DL 110 are still with us after all these decades. Both are great designs. Of course there are better cartridges - but they usually sport one zero more at the right side of the price tag.
We did not cover the electrical loading of the cartridges. MMs ( and moving irons and induced magnet - ANYTHING with a fixed coil ) are in most cases VERY vulnerable to input impedance.
That is not resistance only ( usually 47 Kohm ), but capacitance as well. This comes partly from the phono preamp stage, partly from tonearm wiring and output cable. Usually, when both are combined as in real world, capacitance grows too high for some models, the ones most widespread that are affected by this are Audio Technica models that like low(ish) capacitance of say 150 pF - which is difficult to achieve in tonearm wiring//cable, requiring preamp input to have absolute minimum input capacitance. This normally requires opening the preamp and unsoldering any additional capacitors from the input. Given the fact most audiophiles are not willing or able to do so, MCs which are all but unaffected by this have gained so much popularity.
MMs ( fixed coils ) are affected to the point I absolutely do not trust any subjective review of MM cartridge not stating the loading - either in electrical terms of input resistance and capacitance COMBINED for the arm and preamp or by using arm and preamp for both of which these parameters are known. Otherwise, frequency response deviation(s) ( and reviewer's reaction(s) to it ) can be too great and can overshasdow the true capabilities of the cartridge.
I will return to the topic of cartridge loading time permitting.
Edited by analogsurviver - 3/24/13 at 11:53pm