Pandemic imposed self-isolation has certainly created a greater than normal need for in-home entertainment and…
Today we are proudly announcing the birth of moving coil cartridge sisters AMBER and ROSE. These two are not quite identical twins, but they are definitely closely related, and each is equally the brainchild of Allnic’s master of audio engineering and sonic excellence, Kang Su Park. Either one may very well prove to be the best “vinyl interface” you have ever owned. I am certainly feeling that way about them, and I’ve owned a few cartridges!
I mounted a brand new Rose cartridge on a 16 inch custom tonearm yesterday, and right out of the box, first album, I was bobbing my head and tapping my feet. It took me two sides of a familiar record to jot just these couple of notes… Every time I put pen to paper, my eyes were drawn upwards to track a new sound I couldn’t recall having heard on the album – this with a brand new cartridge!
Listening to the “Wolf and Lamb vs Soul Clap” techno album was just as it was meant to be, all shock, awe and danceability. I was amazed by the plummeting bass, vertigo inducing height, wrap-around lateral soundstage, infinite depth and astounding detail retrieval. No sign of harshness, shrillness, excess sibilance, thinness. Warmth and detail hand in hand, all the emotion of the music straight up and right away. MAN! What happens when I get more than a couple hours run-in time on this thing?!
Today, I mounted Amber on a second arm – and once again, right out of the box, pure magic realism!! I replayed the “Wolf” album; the result was again a shock. WOW. Just wow. Where Rose is all emotional exuberance, Amber is more subtly beguiling, meaning powerful with great pace and rhythm, fast attacks and dynamic swings, but offering more relief and delineation of subtle, micro-detail, and more air.
VTA differs for Amber and Rose. I found that having the VTA set so the rear of the cartridge is visibly elevated provided the best result with Rose; whereas with Amber, cartridge body more parallel to the record surface was best. Recommended VTF is the same for both at about 2.35 gm. As with everything in audio, trust your ears and experiment.
This first listen had me pulling out favourite jazz and a classical albums. Both Amber and Rose proved themselves just as stunningly adept with these. In fact, I simply haven’t heard the equivalent of either of these carts. This is not just listening to a record – it’s experiencing the music, becoming immersed in the magic of what the musicians are creating, right in front of you. Like life itself.
So, which is better? Tough question. My recent experiences may offer some insight.
- Great sense of a filled space, meaning big sound stage with wide lateral spread
- Slightly forward with big swagger; bouncy, exciting, smooth with very acceptable low groove noise
- Stellar bass
- Seriously good attack with very fine pace and rhythm
- Beneficial to systems which tend to be lean, bright, thin sounding
KS Park reports the Rose cartridge has been very well received in Korea by classical music lovers. He says customers listen for hours with zero listener fatigue. Head to head customer comparisons with their more expensive cartridges are yielding instant purchase of Rose or Amber, with many investing in both.
- Intensely satisfying imaging, meaning Amber projects pockets of air or suspended areas of information with an ability to recreate sound pressure increments from specific parts of the stage – uncanny
- Notes almost visually appear to hang, offering time and space correctly. The notes appear to float and offer excellent decay letting the listener listen deeply into the presentation
- Extended highs, beautiful splashes of cymbals, high frequencies that extend seemingly to infinity. The issue with this is, though, that not so good records with scratches and bruises will sound that way
- Resolution is superior, offering more info and nuances of what is happening towards the rear of the stage
- Excellent attack with taut extended bass lines, among the very best I’ve ever heard
It all starts in the groove. No matter what you have invested in your precious analog system, having the best cartridge accessible to you is paramount to satisfying your musical itch.
KS Park’s magical sister combo, Amber ($4500 USD) and Rose ($2900), both designed with a dual magnet motor to emulate a record cutting head ensures seriously best separation, dynamics and spatial presentation, recreating the engineered recording venue. Both Amber and Rose give you a sound that is detailed and startlingly real from top to bottom, with shimmering highs, mirror pool mids, and whatever bass is on the record, piccolo springy to gut-shuddering thunderous. These carts will satisfy all musical tastes.
“It just sounds right.” This statement sums up the performance of Allnic’s Amber and Rose. You will hear more of these two in upcoming days, with supporting reviews. Discover these GREAT cartridges. No disappointments. Guaranteed.
Worldwide delivery. In stock. Get yours now.
CONTACT DAVID BEETLES AT HAMMERTONE AUDIO. Call or WhatsApp: +1 250.826.6872
And for MORE information about MC cartridges, their design and history in general, and about Amber and Rose, check out the 3 part interview with Kang Su Park, Allnic’s founder and product designer par excellence:
Enjoy meeting the man behind what we believe to be the finest audio company in the world!
And here’s a link to the first, terrifically enthusiastic, user review:
Allnic Audio: KS Park, acclaimed designer and manufacturer, builds the finest line up of tube electronics, superior audio connecting cables and moving coil cartridges. The question – Is it good? The answer- It’s an Allnic!
Amber and Rose
How else to buy? From these awesome Allnic dealers:
Corby’s Audio (Canada)
Kevalin Audio (USA)
Soul to Sole Audio (New Zealand)