Hi, just noticed your post. I bought the OC9XSL which is the top of the OC9X line and it's a wonderful cartridge. In my humble opinion it bests cartridges I've owned which cost twice as much.
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A friend had an ART 9, which was damaged by his cleaning lady. He went back to an old OC9 that he found was quite good, much to his surprise. He found it just as good as his ART 9. Just different.
Alwho2, thank you for your response on the OC9XSL. That was the model that I was looking at. I just didn't want to go into the purchase completely blind, or deaf in this case.
Hi samh. My OC9XSL replaced a Dynavector 20X2L in my system. The OC9XSL is quieter with less surface noise. The tonal balance is more accurate. The channel separation is amazing. The cartridge body is threaded for easy mounting.
My OC9XSL is on the new Technics SL-1200GR turntable. My phono preamp is a John Curl designed JC3.
I bought the cartridge at the beginning of the summer and It continues to amaze and delight me. Sinatra, Muddy Waters, Gillian Welch, Bill Evans, Bod Dylan... whatever the music the reproduced sound is always natural, balanced, and lifelike.
When I bought my cartridge there were no hands on reviews and I still can't find one. I gambled and I won. I'm not a reviewer so I'll leave that for Mike Fremmer. I'll just say that this is not my first audio rodeo and I'm very very pleased with the OC9XSL.
Hi and apologies for taking so long to see your question. Yes I am using the stock Technics headshell with my SL-1200GR. It's May, 2020 now and I'm still enjoying the OC9XSL cartridge. It's a great combination. Neutral, detailed and dynamic without ever sounding analytical or sterile. Excellent imaging and soundstaging with Harbeth P3ESR speakers. The turntable and cartridge play music :)
Headshells make a sonic difference, so in the extreme case of audiophile nervosa one would select a headshell not just based on its weight but also based on the materials of which it is made, which affects the sound quality. Therefore, you might want to start with the question of what is the weight of the headshell in the technics tone arm, because apparently the cartridge works well at that headshell weight, just in terms of the net effective mass. Select the AT headshell that approximates the weight of the OEM headshell. Since the headshell contributes in a major way to the overall effective mass of the tonearm, you can’t just select a head shell based on its weight alone, without considering the tone arm to which you plan to attach it.