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Ortofon 2M Comparisons

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by matrix-6, May 3, 2021.

  1. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Listen to the following videos (highest settings):



    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IRXVHFky7UM

    Use the timestamp links in the descriptions of each to jump around.

    Listen to the high hats for Daft Punk and bass punch for Neil Young. Listen to the brightness and open air for each.

    To me, the Red and the Black have a similar character - more open and bright. High Hats and bass jump out. The Blue and Bronze sound more mellowed out, more subdued.

    I'm embarrassed to say it but the Red sounded closer to the Black to me than the Blue or the Bronze. What's up with that? I'm listening via a pair of AKG K-240S.

    The channel has other comparisons but I haven't listened to them yet.

    I went from a 2M silver to blue and the blue was better at IGD. I have a silver cart and was thinking of upping to a Bronze when the time comes but now I'm not so sure...
     
    Nick Brook likes this.
  2. allied333

    allied333 Audiophile

    Location:
    MI
    I choose the 2M Black by a wide margin.
     
  3. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    It definitely sounds the most open and refined. I have a KAB ProS 40 which some say is better and it is excellent.

    A few more for anyone interested: https://www.youtube.com/c/VinilicaMente/search?query=2M Red

    The Red and Black sound bright. The Blue and Bronze dull compared to them. I don't get it.

    Actually in this one the Red sounds brighter than the Black:



    Listen to the guitar intro. Red is more open.

    Update: You know... It might actually be volume levels.
     
    Last edited: May 3, 2021
  4. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    And the last one:



    Remember to adjust volume levels.

    P.S. I have no affiliation with that channel. Just found it searching on comparison videos.
     
  5. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    And then there's this guys take on the Blue vs. Bronze, which I've never heard of before:

     
  6. Strat-Mangler

    Strat-Mangler Personal Survival Daily Record-Breaker

    Location:
    Toronto
    You're overanalyzing and frankly putting WAY too much weight onto this.

    How things sound live will be very different and way more easily identifiable than listening to a file recorded with a USB turntable [i.e. low-end stuff with dubious SQ to begin with] that has had its audio quality inherently negatively impacted by the method by which it was recorded, the codec that was used, and then YouTube's additional compression.
     
    Dubmart, Henrik_Swe, vinnn and 5 others like this.
  7. Chris C

    Chris C Music was my first love and it will be my last!

    Location:
    Ohio
    2mblue in my house!
     
    Tonym245, Szeppelin75 and matrix-6 like this.
  8. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    And of course this guy's is the best:



    Level matched.
     
  9. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Probably right. Just thought it was interesting. You can hear a difference though..
     
  10. Oelewapper

    Oelewapper Plays vinyl instead of installing it on the floor.

    It’s a cartridge comparison - it’s about differences.
    As long as the same setup and settings are used it’s probably fine.
    It adds the same distortion on all the cartridges, so the differences between cartridges does not change.
    If the cheap equipment is less sensitive, expect the differences to be even bigger in real life.
     
    Tim Irvine and matrix-6 like this.
  11. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Nick Brook and Daniel Thomas like this.
  12. Chris C

    Chris C Music was my first love and it will be my last!

    Location:
    Ohio
    Nice and interesting thread @matrix-6, thanks for the comparison videos! Ironically, while I also hear a clearly brighter sound with your comparisons on the RED and BLACK, as compared to the slightly subdued BLUE and BRONZE. but here at my house, playing my BLUE through my Scott 299b tube amp through Klipsch Chorus 1's (that are updated with some Bob Crites crossovers and diaphragms), on a Dual 1229 and my BLUE sounds more like the RED and the BLACK to be honest.
     
    matrix-6 likes this.
  13. Chris C

    Chris C Music was my first love and it will be my last!

    Location:
    Ohio
    Nice! If I ever want to get a friends jaw on the floor with vinyl, I always pull out my Quiex II promo of "Brothers In Arms" and hit start on my Dual 1229 and let the music speak for itself!!!
     
  14. AppleCorp3

    AppleCorp3 Forum Resident

    My preference was always the Blue. I have used the Bronze and just don’t care for it. I haven’t had the desire to spend the money on a Black just to have a similar experience.

    For those who have branched out, would Ortofon’s MC line Blue have a similar sound compared to the others in those lines as well?
     
  15. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    What was off with the Bronze for you? What did you like in the Blue over the Bronze?

    I'm currently on a Blue with Silver cart on a Project Carbon Classic. I've been thinking of trying out a Bronze on the Silver when the time comes. I recently gave the original Silver stylus a try and the IGD was pretty noticeable on some records. The Blue was much better.

    I haven't heard definitively if the Silver cart is the same as the Bronze and Black cart. You would think it would be much easier for Ortofon to give the Bronze and Black cart a silver case vs. re-doing the internals as well, but who knows. The Silver cart has fewer coils in addition to the silver compared to the Red/Blue so that tells you it's not the same.

    Here's what Ortofon states:

    Stylus 2M Silver

    Physically 2M styli will fit on alternative 2M cartridges bodies, but 2M Series cartridges’ engines, coils and magnets configurations are not quite identical: Red and Blue are identical, so are the Bronze and Black and so are the true mono variants 2M Mono and 2M 78.

    2M Silver phono cartridge is an OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) model that takes most of the characteristics of the 2M Red. 2M Silver's special feature is silver plated copper coils, the same coil wire material as in the 2M Bronze and Black models, with a reduced number of windings.

    2M series styli are interchangeable within the below combinations:
    - 2M Red, 2M Blue and 2M Silver
    - 2M Bronze, 2M Black and 2M Black LVB 250
    - 2M Mono and 2M 78

    Special for 2M Red, 2M Blue and 2M Silver phono cartridges:
    - 2M Silver will be an upgrade compared to 2M Red due to a special suspension and silver plated copper wire material.
    - 2M Blue is an upgrade compared to both 2M Red and 2M Silver thanks to Nude Elliptical diamond which retrieves information from the groove with a higher accuracy.






     
    Last edited: May 4, 2021
  16. Soundslave

    Soundslave Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tomsk,Russia
    Yeah, I also found out those video comparisons not so long ago to understand if there is indeed a significant difference between the Red/Blue and Bronze/Black bodies. Later on checked out how Bronze compares between others, because I already upgraded my stylus to Blue.
    Right now I have 2M Red cart with Bronze stylus. My main point of concern was advanced stylus shape. I'm not experienced with different carts and TTs, being just 5 years into vinyl realm, but I firmly believe (at least now) that better shape lead to better sound retrieval. The coloration of the sound and sound preference is a different matter though.
    Anyway, Blue was significantly better than Red and I definitely don't want to go back to Red. Bonded ellitpical shape of the Red stylus is totally okay for playback, but nude Blue made far better impression and opened highs just a little bit more on my system. The sound became a lot tighter overall, with better extension, less sibilance and less IGD. Also, far less surface noise as noticed by many who also changed from Red to Blue.
    Now Blue to Bronze is a little bit different. In my opinion, we all have to keep in mind that by Ortofon specs we're moving from 8x18 Nude elliptical to 8x40 Nude Fine Line, which in fact shouldn't lessen IGD that much because of the same minor radius. On the other hand, in my experience Bronze provides even more high frequency openness, and truly gives out more details on cymbals, not just simply by bumping up frequencies as it might seem. It is a little bit louder than Blue (which is a case, because Blue is quieter than Red in my experience and the same was noted on a different YT video). Blue gives a little bit wider bass, while Bronze is a bit tighter on that, plus again reads more high frequency information because of the extended contact patch.
    Just my two cents.
     
    DrZhivago, Lucca90 and matrix-6 like this.
  17. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    So do you prefer the Bronze or the Blue? It sounds like the Bronze opens things up from the Blue and the Black would take it even further. My KAB ProS 40 with Fritz Geiger stylus is like that. Everything sounds wide open, like having your ears open up on a flight or altitude change. There's just way more air and room to breathe in the music. On good recordings that is.
     
  18. AppleCorp3

    AppleCorp3 Forum Resident

    I felt the Bronze was missing something in the mids which resulted in a less warm, more clinical sound. The Blue, while not maybe having the highs that the Bronze does, is a bit sweeter and for the music that I listen to (classic rock).
     
  19. matrix-6

    matrix-6 Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Location:
    USA
    Thanks. That is interesting. That's what I heard going from Bronze to Black with the Bronze being warmer. How long have you had the Bronze? Has it fully broken in?
     
  20. arem

    arem Forum Resident

    I'm bad with descriptive terms but I had the Blue for a few years, then moved up to the Bronze and while it technically was better I never felt like the Bronze was more pleasing to listen to. I tried to tweak things but I just never loved the Bronze's sound, it was a little clinical and forward especially on material that was aggressive or wasn't well recorded. Last year I decided to try the Grado Opus on a whim and I am much happier with the sound I'm getting even though technically the Grado has a lesser stylus profile. It's just more fun to listen to.
     
    matrix-6 likes this.
  21. Alright4now

    Alright4now Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans, LA
    I just upgraded from Red to Blue and the Blue kicks the Red's ass. I don't know how else to say it.
     
    Soundslave and matrix-6 like this.
  22. luckybaer

    luckybaer Thinks The Devil actually beat Johnny

    Location:
    Missouri
    That’s what I’m looking to do: get the Blue replacement stylus and stick it on the Red body. From what I’ve read, that’s fine, since they share the same body. Never liked the Red.
    <Interesting that the bonded elliptical is so much cheaper than the nude elliptical.>
     
    Alright4now likes this.
  23. Alright4now

    Alright4now Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans, LA
    Yup. I have a project debut carbon. I just pulled the red guy off and stuck the blue guy on.

    Night. And. Day. Dude.
     
    luckybaer likes this.
  24. On_the_dunes

    On_the_dunes Forum Resident

    Location:
    italy
    On this forum there is an old post that show the optimal capacitor loading for the ortofon 2m (black); i follow this way on my orange and the highs are now wonderful
    Sorry for my english..

    Ortofon 2M Black - frequency response charts
     
    Soundslave likes this.
  25. AppleCorp3

    AppleCorp3 Forum Resident

    Yes both are fully broken in. I’d agree with @arem that the Blue is just more pleasant to listen to. Clinical vs musical would be my summary.
     
    matrix-6 likes this.

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