What is up with the 90-X verses the Titan?

Any opinions on these two carts? How do they compare to each other and the Urushi? Thanks
Don't know, Joe. They are both so new, that I haven't gotten an ear on either one. Neither has anyone else I know.
Maybe somebody else has some input.

The word on the 90-X is that it is supposed to exceed the 901, but by a smaller margin than the difference between the 501 and 901. It has a slightly higher output at 0.6mv. If it is better than the 901, then man, it's up there at the top.

Haven't heard any scuttlebutt about the Titan, but if it is better than the Helikon, then it's also real good.

As far as I can tell, the Urushi is just a Rosewood with a paint job. You can get the Rosewood with the same options of Platinum motor or whatever. I don't know if they "hand pick" the Rosewoods that they make into Urushis or not. Urushi is the name of the paint job that the Samurai used to put on their sword scabbards, and it is a costly and painstaking process. It would cost alot to have this hand-done on a cartridge, and that is really probably what you are paying for. Whether it makes any difference to the sound is debatable. If it were me, I'd prefer to go for the Rosewood Platinum Signature over an Urushi.

How they stack up against each other, at this level, is a matter of taste. They are all top level cartridges. You have to determine which sound you like the best, and also compare the prices to see which you think gives the best sound for the money spent.
Hi Twl
I think in addition to being a piece of art, the Urushi lacquer actually acts as a form of vibration/resonance dampening of the cartridge body, which affects the overall sound of the cartridge. Its not just artwork, Koetsu paints the cartridge for a reason. Otherwise, the normal Rosewood Signature should sound the same as the Urushi.
The rosewood used in Urushi is aged and harder (dryer). Could be the same as Pro IV (Rosewood Platinum). Also, Urushi has tighter spec'd coils and magnets.

If it is just the body, can't fully explain the improvements in refinement, extension, and soundstage. Of course, more dynamics, more sure footed which could be attributed to more rigid body.

I have not heard the Rosewood Platinum myself, but someone who had opportunity to hear still prefers the painted body, so the paint must be doing something as well.

BTW, look up Urushi in Google. They are extremely hard and will get harder as the paint ages. I am sure I don't own Koetsu for utility value, but love the painted surface too. The gold dust finish makes me spin....