Ortofon 2M series Red Moving Magnet Cartridge

Ortofon 2M Red Moving Magnet Phono cartridge.





What we Say:

The Ortofon 2M red is the entry point into the 2M series of moving magnet phono cartridges. It comes fitted as standard on a wide range of turntables. The 2M series features a removable stylus allowing replacement when it becomes worn. The body is retained and reused. You can replace like for like or move up to a blue or Bronze as they share the same body.

The Ortofon 2M red may be the entry level MM cartridge in the range  but it will work well in a range of decks. The character of the cartridge suits a wide range of musical taste,the sound is dynamic and tuneful with excellent ability to pick out finer details within the recording. Please get in touch if you would like to hear it in your system.

If you own a Rega turntable the arm will require a spacer fitting to raise it to the correct height. We will supply and fit the spacer to your deck for you to make sure you get the best performance from your new cartridge.

Ortofon 2M red specification

Output voltage at 1000 Hz, 5cm/sec.  –  5.5 mV
Channel balance at 1 kHz   –  1.5 dB
Channel separation at 1 kHz  –  22 dB
Channel separation at 15 kHz  –  15 dB
Frequency range at – 3dB  –  20-22.000 Hz
Frequency response  –  20-20.000 Hz + 3 / – 1 dB
Tracking ability at 315Hz at recommended tracking force  –  70 µm
Compliance, dynamic, lateral  –  20 µm/mN
Stylus type  –  Elliptical
Stylus tip radius  –  r/R 8/18 µm
Tracking force range  –  1.6-2.0 g (16-20 mN)
Tracking force, recommended  – 1.8 g (18 mN)
Tracking angle  –  20°
Internal impedance, DC resistance  –  1.3 kOhm
Internal inductance  –  700 mH
Recommended load resistance  –  47 kOhm
Recommended load capacitance  –  150-300 pF
Cartridge colour, body/stylus  –  Black/Red
2M standard and 2M Verso cartridges weight  –  7.2 g
2M PnP MkII cartridge with integrated headshell weight  –  20 g
2M PnP MkII cartridge with integrated headshell length – 52 mm

Replacement stylus unit  –  2M Red (interchangeable with 2M Blue and 2M Silver)

Stylus lifetime: with proper care we find that up to 1000 hours is possible without degradation of performance. Please read about stylus care on our FAQ.

2M Series styli interchangeability:
The 2M Series’ engines, coils and magnets configurations are not identical: Red and Blue are identical, so are the Bronze and Black and so are the true mono variants 2M Mono and 2M 78. Likewise, 2M series styli are interchangeable within the below combinations:
– 2M Red, 2M Blue and 2M Silver
– 2M Bronze and 2M Black
– 2M Mono and 2M 78

Compatibility with Rega brand TT/TA:
REGA brand cartridges’ height from stylus tip to the top cartridge mounting surface is lower than standard. Therefore you would need spacers to ensure the correct set-up of the Ortofon cartridge. Please read about cartridge set-up and alignment on tonearm on our FAQ.
Adjusting the height of your Rega tonearm is easy with a spacer set. For correct VTA 3.2 – 4 mm spacers should be enough for a 2M cartridge.

Download the 2M series userguide

Download the 2M series brochure

Enquire about the Ortofon 2M series Red Moving Magnet Cartridge >

Contact me when this ex-demo becomes available >

What they say:

The Ortofon 2M red


– an improved engine, which provides an increased output of 5.5 mV and an optimized sound reproduction and a high level of sonic accuracy
– a tipped Elliptical diamond and split pole pins with a copper wire
– the cartridge body is manufactured from Hopelex, an environment-friendly material which ensures high rigidity while eliminating unwanted resonances.

We have optimized the design for ease of mounting the cartridge, and the weight and size to fit the most common turntables on the market today. The 2M Series provides excellent compatibility when used in an assortment of playback systems and with a wide variety of phono preamps.

2M Red is an all-purpose cartridge that delivers open, dynamic sound with a slight touch of warmth.

The weight and dimensions of the 2M Series have been optimized to fit the most common turntables on the market today.The cartridge body has also been streamlined to provide easy mounting and alignment.
2M cartridges provide excellent compatibility in an assortment of playback systems and with a wide variety of phono preamps. 2M standard model for top mount headshells. We have optimized the design for ease of mounting the cartridge; the weight and dimensions fit the most common turntables on the market today.

2M Verso configuration for bottom mount headshells. 2M Verso allows for easy mounting on tonearms which do not allow the screws to pass through the top of the headshell.

2M PnP is designed for direct mount on s-shaped arms with universal mount. 2M PnP provides correct Baerwald alignment with the majority of tonearms with universal mount.

“The 2M line has become a de facto reference for moving-magnet cartridges… and it is due to both the
sound quality of the various 2M models as well as the wide price range across the line.”
as Mark Michelson wrote in the review for The AudioBeat.

The differences among the 2M variants concern three primary areas: engine, body material and stylus profile.
The entire 2M Series features Ortofon’s trademark split pole pins, an invention which enables moving magnet cartridges to have a flat frequency response as with a moving coil cartridge. Split pole pins were invented by Ortofon, and were originally presented in the 500 and Ortofon OM Super Series. The 2M 78, 2M Mono, 2M Red and 2M Blue use an improved engine, which provides an optimized sound reproduction and a high level of sonic accuracy. The 2M Bronze and 2M Black use a special upgraded engine, featuring split pole pins with a silver plated copper wire. The cartridge body material used for the 2M Bronze and 2M Black is manufactured from Lexan DMX Piano Black, a revolutionary material which ensures high rigidity while eliminating unwanted resonances.
All of the 2M cartridges feature diamonds which are polished to the highest standards of the industry. The 2M Red features a bonded Elliptical diamond, while the 2M Blue features a Nude Elliptical diamond. The 2M Bronze features a Nude Fine Line diamond stylus, which is particularly suited for demanding applications. The
slim profile of the Fine Line stylus will track even the highest frequency information, making it a must for discerning listeners. Additionally, its larger footprint ensures reduced distortion and record wear.
The 2M Black is the moving magnet flagship from Ortofon. The 2M Black is graced with a Nude Shibata diamond stylus – the same diamond as on the acclaimed MC Cadenza Black. Its slim, highly polished profile allows an exceedingly wide contact area to the groove walls and ensures notably detailed reproduction throughout the spectrum, including even the most high frequency groove information. Users of the 2M
Black will enjoy the benefit of impeccable sound quality, along with reduced record & stylus wear and reduced distortion and phase error as a result of the diamond’s improved tracking geometry.
The 2M 78 features a 65 µm Spherical stylus that is perfect for playback of 78 r.p.m. records, which require a larger stylus profile for proper playback. The 2M Mono features an 18 µm Nude Spherical stylus that is
an optimal solution for playing mono microgroove vinyl records. Both 2M Mono and 2M 78 feature an optimized engine for superior sound quality and use a strapped output to deliver the same output signal from both sets of terminal pins. This effectively eliminates the need for mono-specific equipment, making it easily possible to enjoy true mono reproduction on any stereo playback system.
The 2M Blue, Bronze, Black and Mono’s diamonds are mounted directly onto the cantilever, rather than being mounted on a metal shank which is affixed to the cantilever. Nude mounting reduces tip mass, enabling the stylus to respond more quickly to rapid changes in groove modulation. This improves portrayal of strong transients.
2M Series styli are engineered for a tight fit to minimize coupled vibrations, thereby improving sound reproduction. Physically 2M styli will fit on alternative 2M cartridges bodies, but 2M Series cartridges’ engines, coils and magnets configurations are not quite identical: Red and Blue are identical, so are the Bronze and Black and so are the true mono variants 2M Mono and 2M 78. 2M series styli are interchangeable within the below combinations:
• 2M Red and 2M Blue
• 2M Bronze and 2M Black
• 2M Mono and 2M 78
With proper care we find that up to 1,000 hours is possible without degradation of performance. The stylus does begin to exhibit changes after 1,000 hours, but the stylus life as a whole is expected to top 2,000 hours.
Proper care is comprised of the following:
• Cleaning of record by means of fibre brush before and after every use. Cleaning of record by using record cleaning machine once in a while.
• Cleaning of stylus by means of a fine antistatic brush. Please remember to remove dust from the diamond tip before and after playback of each record. Use the brush in the forward direction from the rear of the cartridge towards the stylus tip, never from stylus tip to the rear of the cartridge and never from side to side.
• Proper adjustment of alignment, antiskating, azimuth and tracking force.
• Ortofon do not recommend the use of solvents of any kind for cleaning of either record surface or stylus.

Review quotes

The Audio Beat, August 2016
Exploring Ortofon’s 2M Lineup
by Marc Mickelson

“…The 2M line has become a de facto reference for moving-magnet cartridges…it is due to both the sound quality of the various 2M models as well as the wide price range across the line… The differences among the four stereo 2M models occur in three primary areas: stylus profile, body material, and engine …
… The 2M Black is “open, fast, detailed, vivid, full of vitality and sonically spectacular.” It is a true high-resolution transducer that consequently puts great demands on the downstream electronics and speakers…
…On the other end, the Ortofon 2M Red is far more forgiving than the 2M Black, but also less involving, at least in the context of my system (the turntable is a Technics SP-15 with an Audio-Technica ATP-12T tonearm, both in a Technics SH-15B2 base – red.)…
…with the 2M Blue …you get the audiophile treatment: a full-range, highly resolving presentation that sounds neither stiff nor unforgiving. In fact, the 2M Blue’s balance, both tonally and in terms of overall resolution, may be its greatest feat. It’s an easy cartridge to listen to, and even novice listeners…
…While the 2M Black sounds more immediately impressive, the 2M Bronze is the more satisfying over the long haul, halving the difference between the Black’s speed and resolution and the Blue’s balance. In fact… it is a mixture of all of these sonic virtues. It’s fast, but not ostentatiously so; it turns information into music, and it does this because it is better balanced, neither leaning in one sonic direction or another. I would say that it represents not just the 2M line’s sweet spot but also its musical core. …”


Hi-Fi News February 2008
The Ortofon 2M Blue cartridge
Reviewed by Andrew Harrison

“…the Ortofon worked fine from new and cold…well – focused and relatively neutral sound, tidy and tuneful…
…more focused around a level midband….could find low bass where needed…
…had a very impressive ability to sound balanced…
…allowing a performance to be listened into with ease…
…will suit anyone after a more natural sound..