A free flowing design, Carmen is highly resolving, with an unparalleled purity of tone and an ultra-smooth presentation. Just slightly lush, with a well developed midrange, Carmen ultimately seduces you into long, late listening sessions. As dawn approaches and the lead-out groove begins its rumble, you will find yourself desperately fumbling for another record, just to keep the magic alive for one more side.
A Girl's Best Friend
Carmen is a very special cartridge and her stylus is a large part of what makes her special. Starting with a very high-purity stone, Carmen's diamond is a 50x occlusion free diamond. A true elliptical design, Soundsmith grinds the entire diamond not just the front and rear, giving Carmen a huge resolution advantage over other elliptical designs and a smoothness of tone that is unique in this price range.
Carmen is a medium weight cartridge at 6.8Gms making it compatible with a broad variety of tonearms and thanks to its 2.2mV output, Carmen works well with most MM phono preamps. All Soundsmith cartridges are Made in the USA.
Moving Iron Design
A Moving Iron cartridge design has both the magnets and the coils fixed in place. A very low-mass and extremely precisely wound iron cross is affixed to the cantilever/stylus assembly and placed between the magnets and coils; as the iron cross moves in the magnetic field it generates signal voltage. Since only the iron cross moves, more coil windings (higher output) and heavier magnets (more powerful) may be used without penalty. Other advantages to the MI design are very low moving mass (greater resolution) and superior channel separation (better imaging).
Moving Iron History
Also called Moving Micro Cross, the Moving Iron concept was first introduced by Bang & Olufsen in 1978 and granted a patent shortly thereafter. The ultra-high compliance of MI designs made them a great match with B&O’s lightweight tonearms and, unfortunately, virtually unusable with modern (and heavier) tonearm designs. Thus, MI cartridges have never really entered the consciousness of audiophiles in the way that Moving Coil and Moving Magnet cartridges have, until now.
Made in the USA
Soundsmith is a specialty audio manufacturer located about an hour north of New York City. Founded in 1972, Soundsmith has achieved an enviable reputation in the audiophile world for outstanding sonic quality and extremely high-value products. Perhaps best known now for their work restoring cartridges and for their own line of Moving Iron cartridges, every Soundsmith product is hand-crafted in Soundsmith’s Peekskill, NY factory by a carefully selected team of artisans and engineers.
Now available from Soundsmith Designer Peter Ledermann's DirectGrace Records, Recordings to Rescue Children:
Elio Villafranca's Flower By the Dry River.