Optimized Transmission Line (OTL) Cantilever/Stylus Assembly
Grado’s OTL provides an ideal transfer of the signal from point to point, e.g., stylus to cantilever to magnet to coils, etc. This has been achieved by eliminating resonance at each of these key junctions. The transmission line cantilever consists of separate sections that are telescoped into each other. All sections are made of different alloys, some sections hollow, other sections solid. These sections are bonded together with materials that act as dampers, and are coated with a black proprietary material which controls and absorbs resonances that travel on the surface of the cantilever (known as skin effects). The OTL stylus/cantilever design will make your records sound quieter, improve the height, width, and depth of the soundstage, and offer more detail than previously obtainable. Cartridge Holography does exist…and that is what Grado’s OTL technology is all about, more performance.
Pivoted-Fixed Axial Cantilever/Stylus Generator
This design feature is basically quite simple. The “OTL” cantilever shaft is brought to a fixed axial pivot that supports the entire cantilever assembly. A miniature element attached to the end of the cantilever is allowed to move freely within the lines of flux of a stationary magnet and coil structure. This system of support is mechanically more accurate (more linear) than conventional “teeter-totter” designs that utilize an iron armature to balance the mass of the cantilever. The teeter-totter design is supported in the center with a rubber donut mounting. The fixed axial design has a very low tip mass, which results in lower distortion, improved transient response, and longer record life.
Flux-Bridger Generator System
The Flux-Bridger design uses four separate magnetic gaps that the miniature element of the cantilever bridges. The miniature element moves between opposing flux gaps creating an increase in flux in one gap while reducing it in the other. The four separate magnetic gaps create a highly efficient and perfectly balanced system. This design requires fewer coil turns than conventional designs.
Hand-Built in the USA With 100% Quality Control
Each individual cartridge manufactured by Grado is hand assembled and tested for frequency response, channel output, channel balance, phase linearity, inductance and resistance. This meticulous care in design and construction lavished on each Grado cartridge contributes to an unchallenged consistency of performance and guarantee of reliability.
The Reference and Statement Series Cartridges
These series of wooden cartridges are a fixed coil design, hand-crafted at our labs from a specially selected species of mahogany. An intricate procedure of curing is done between production steps to achieve optimal sonic quality. Unlike the Prestige series, these series generator/stylus module is not replaceable allowing a redesigned one piece magnetic circuit and a reduction of chassis resonances. The Statement and Reference series utilizes manufacturing and assembly techniques of fantastic accuracy and precision, the result is virtual perfection in a phono pickup resulting in the finest pickups in the world without exception. Should be used only with the finest equipment. Recommended tracking force 3/4 to 2 grams.
The Latest Version, the Reference1
The newly redesigned Master1 and Reference1 cartridges have had their coil design reconfigured, and the effective moving mass of their generating system has been reduced by 17%. All this is hand-assembled within a machined, new processed, Australian Jarrah wood housing. The Master1 and Reference1 models use a five piece OTL cantilever technology achieving an additional 5% tip mass reduction over the Platinum1 and Sonata1 models. The coils are wound with ultra-high purity long crystal (UHPLC) oxygen free copper wire. The Master1 model is mounted with Grado’s specially designed nude elliptical diamond, and the Reference1 model uses Grado’s true ellipsoid design diamond.
Comments on the Grado Reference
“The Reference is the finest fixed-coil cartridge I’ve ever heard, and one of the finest sounding cartridges I’ve ever heard especially in the midrange, regardless of price.” -Stereophile / Michael Fremer Vol.21, No.3
“I have to say the Well Tempered turntable I have with the Grado cartridge is fantastic. It’s the best LP playback I’ve heard in my house so far, or in the studio.” -Bob Ludwig, The Master of Mastering Engineers / Gateway Mastering Studios
“It is a great bargain, and I would take it over any number of cartridges I have heard that sell up to five times its price.” -Absolute Sound / Adam Walinsky
“You forget your reviewing a cartridge and, before you know it, the records over. This is what The Reference does best, it disappears.”
Ultimate Audio / Dr. Larry Brotzen Vol.1, No.2
“The Reference is a superb phono cartridge. If you’re looking for an outstanding high-output device, The Reference will take you to analog playback heaven.”
“Mine now sings and rocks and grooves and stomps and seduces and caresses and thrills. In fact, I can’t think of any higher compliment to pay Grado’s The Reference than to say nowadays I simply love listening to records.” -Fi magazine / Frank Doris Vol.3, No.3
“The Reference sets a benchmark for analog cartridge performance and is a real alternative to the analytical school of sound. If you think moving coil cartridges are the only way to go, think again. You owe it to yourself to listen to Grado’s The Reference.” -Ultimate Audio / Myles B. Astor Vol.2, No. 4
“The Reference receives a duo of accolades from me. I want to use it on a regular basis and I’m going to continue to use it!” -The Audiophile Voice / Karl Lozier Vol.6, No. 4
Grado Reference V2 Statement Technical Data
- Output : 1.0mV @5 CMV (45)
- Controlled Frequency Response: 10-60 KHZ
- Channel Separation: Average 30DB – 10-30,000
- Input Load: 47,000 OHMS
- Inductance: 6 Mh
- Resistance: 70 OHMS
- Non Sensitive To Captive Load
- Tracking Force: 1.5-1.9 Grams
- Weight: 10 Grams