Dynavector Te Kaitora
Dynavector's latest cartridge is called Te Kaitora, Maori for The Discoverer. The name gives away the fact that Te Kaitora was collaboration between Dynavector New Zealand and Dynavector Japan. New Zealand have been responsible for a range of high quality pre amps, power amps and phono stages. They encouraged Dynavector Japan to design a no holds barred cartridge and Te Kaitora is the result.
It is a nude design, that is it has no cover. This helps keep weight down, removes the chance of information losing vibrations and does not allow dust to collect as is possible in enclosed designs. The cartridge motor is attached to a titanium headblock. The cartridge is mounted to the arm via screwthreads in this headblock. Titanium was picked for high strength and lightness. Dynavector chose Ogura's line contact Pathfinder (PF) stylus attached to a solid boron cantilever for Te Kaitora. The coils are of very fine silver wire wound using Dynavector founder Dr Tominari's own design of coilwinding machine. This set up gives a good output level of 0.25mV with a very light and agile coil assembly which leads to secure tracking and a 'quick' sound.
On the front polepiece there is another coil which is Dynavectors flux damper. Another unique feature to Dynavector is their softened magnetism, ferrous metal strips arranged to alter the magnetic field. These two features combine to eliminate the distortion caused by excess magnetic flux produced by the high energy magnets used in modern cartridges.
"I developed a very healthy respect for this delightfully smooth and transparent cartridge, but it took a day or three to fall in love with it. There's very little to criticise about the sound per se, save some lack of vividness and power. It's very delicate, with a wide dynamic range, but it is also rather laid back in presentation.
This is a real smoothie. The price is high, but it's well worth checking out if you're looking for laid-back transparency, and value the low level of needle-talk." - John Burns Hifi Choice (U.K.)