for an incredible value....the audio technica 150mlx between 350 and 400 bucks, and it plays toe to toe with the likes of some pretty refined mc's from 1k to 2k
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I agree with Jaybo - the AT150MLX is a very fine and detailed cartridge, but it does need to be loaded correctly. AT specifies a total cable capacitance (arm, ICs, preamp input) to be between 100-200pf - I use 115pf. You should play with the preamp input impedance also - I've lowered mine from 47K to about 32K using "Y" adapters and 100K load resistors. This loading should be played with depending on how bright/forward your system is.
09-29-07: JayboIt's a lot cheaper than that here.