Are you looking for a nice and affordable replacement for your current phono cartridge? If so, you are most probably considering either Shure M97XE or Grado Black right now. Both of these two products are popular models on the market. The truth to be told, Shure M97XE is usually a little bit pricier than Grado Black, but the two are still available under a hundred bucks. So, what’s the difference between Shure M97XE and Grado Black? Which is the best value for the money?
Moving Magnet versus Moving Iron
One significant difference between Shure M97XE and Grado Black is regarding the working mechanisms. Shure M97XE is a moving magnet (MM) cartridge, whereas Grado Black is a moving iron (MI) cartridge. On Shure M97XE, the stylus cantilever holds a tiny permanent magnet between two sets of fixed coils. Meanwhile, on Grado Black, the magnet is bigger and positioned over the coils. The main advantage of MM is that it is less prone to humming. MI is more prone to humming, especially on direct drives, but, when set right, can sound even better. (Read also : Shure M97XE Vs Audio Technica AT95E)
The difference between the working mechanisms translates into real and noticeable effects in the performance. A lot of users have stated that Grado Black sounds better, and, considering the more affordable price, makes a much better value for the money. The audio reproduction of Grado Black is rich and full. It is able to deliver crisp, clean, and detailed mids and highs. It also reaches very well into the lows. The bass response is nice and sweet. On the other hand, Shure M97XE is praised for the bright, highly accurate and detailed audio reproduction. However, the bass performance is not as good. Shure M97XE does not deliver enough bass presence, making the output kind of analytical.
Still, Shure M97XE can be a real solution for certain situations. Shure M97XE is known for its superb tolerance and reliability on damaged discs. When the LP is less than ideal to be read, other cartridges fail, but Shure M97XE can still perform satisfyingly. This is because of the sophisticated viscous-damped dynamic stabilizer, which maintains a uniform distance between the record and the cartridge. It also has the Side-Guard system that protects the stylus if the cartridge accidentally slides across the LP. Besides, Shure M97XE can also be upgraded with the JICO stylus, which will improve the audio quality by a lot!
Shure M97XE Vs Grado Black
|Shure M97XE||Grado Black|
|Key Features||DigitalDJGear sells the Shure M97XE, which is one of the most accurate and smoothest sounding turntable cartridges on the market today.||- 4OurEars is the only Grado Authorized Amazon Reseller
- Elliptical Diamond mounted in a brass bushing
- Frequency Response 10-50
- Reconfigured coil design
- Standard Turntable Mount|
|Ratings||4.5 out of 5.0 stars||3.8 out of 5.0 stars|
|Best Deal*||Save Money Please click here||Save Money Please click here|
NOTE : Product prices, availability, ratings and save money information are accurate as of the date/time indicated on post time (as seen right bellow the tittle) and are subject to change. Any price, ratings, availability and save money information displayed on Amazon Site or Headphone Authority at the time of purchase will apply to the purchase of this product.
Choosing between these two models can be tricky. In the end, we recommend you to choose Shure M97XE, which has nice features and excellent reliability. It can also be upgraded with the JICO stylus later if needed.