Ultra Low Impedance Cartridges

The high end audio world is made up of “components”.  Some companies design and build cartridges, some build phono preamplifiers, others build preamplifiers, amplifiers or speakers.  It is rare that a company and a designer considers an entirely new “true systems” approach to audio reproduction, and starts from scratch with a “clean sheet of paper”.  Dr. Kubo has done this with Haniwa … it was designed as a totally new approach to audio.  While he was designing the analog front end of the Haniwa audio system, he developed new technology that overcomes problems that exist in most other systems on the market while extracting all of the music from the record groove with pristine accuracy and detail.  It all starts with the sensor used to extract the music from the groove … the cartridge.  In considering the cartridge pick-up system, Dr. Kubo has developed ultra-low impedance cartridges based on a current loop system as opposed to most voltage based systems.

HCTR-CO MkII 0.2 ohm Current Output Cartridge

The -CO in the name says it all it stands for Current Output.  The ultra-low Impedance 0.2Ω MC Cartridge generates a strong current in a Current Loop Circuit formed by the HCTR-CO MkII cartridge itself and the HCVC (Haniwa Current to Voltage Converter).  This strong current provides a powerful Electro-Magnetic damping force to stabilize the needle motion, and assure precise and accurate tracing in the groove even at very low needle pressures of 0.5g or less!

The 0.2 ohm Haniwa HCTR-CO MkII cartridge and CVC form a high output, current loop circuit which is balanced with the dynamic, high compliance, mechanical system of the cartridge.  The light forces of less than 0.5g on the cantilever allow the MC Cartridge to deliver a linear response to the groove as opposed to the non-linear response delivered by other cartridges.  These extremely light tracking forces virtually eliminate record surface noise so that quiet passages are incredibly articulate and detailed.  In our testing with Haniwa’s ThePlayer, this carefully balanced mechanical and electrical system produces fabulous spatial recognition, ultra-clear and recognizable tones and remarkably improved bass that is deep, crisp and fluid.  The bass sound is fundamentally different from other system we have found remarkable improvement of the bass at 0.3-0.5 grams of tracking force.

The Moving Coil (MC) cartridge has long been recognized as the best pickup for retrieving delicate sounds from LP records.  It is well known that lower impedance MC cartridges deliver higher sound quality with more detail and dynamics.  In addition, it is also known that lower impedance creates a lower output voltage.

Recently, several cartridge manufacturers have developed sub-Ω MC cartridges.  However, they still maintain the philosophy that MC cartridges output voltage, and output from these sub-Ω MC cartridges is low.  Several low voltage-based corrections to this problem are used, but they sacrifice noise immunity, because an extremely high gain of over 40dB is needed to raise the voltage to required levels.

HANIWAs design is quite different and clearly separates the Current from Voltage Domain, we have developed a unique MC cartridge HCTR-CO MkII (Current Output) that was designed from the beginning to output current.  At the same time, HANIWA also developed a passive Current to Voltage Converter (HCVC) to make the signal compatible with any phono stage MM input.

Since the cartridge works in the Current Domain, a lower impedance cartridge generates more current in the circuit, and consequently the signal quality gets higher with less noise.  Combined with other ultra-low impedance components, the Current Loop Circuit maximizes the advantages of the HCTR-CO MkII cartridge.

In the current domain, it is essential to minimize the impedance of all components in the current signal path so high current representing the music signal can flow freely. This path consists of the cartridge, the wiring inside the tone arm, contact points of connectors, the cable, and the input circuit of HEQA03-CI.  Together, they form a Current Loop Circuit, and the current in this loop is maximized by minimizing the total loop impedance.  With Haniwa components total loop impedance is lowered to less than 0.50Ω!

This extremely low loop impedance transfers music with almost no signal loss, with the highest accuracy and precision on the market.

For more information on the Haniwa HCTR-CO MkII Cartridge and a complete product brochure,

Download Datasheet

HCTR01 Mark II 0.4 ohm Current Output Cartridge

The Haniwa HCTR01 Mark II cartridge is the predecessor to the flagship HCTR-CO MkII cartridge, elegant in its simplicity of design for form and function.  Its appearance is like a jewel in classic gloss black that hides the function of a new and radical approach to analog playback.  It is also a current output cartridge that was designed as to have a low impedance and inductance while working with either HCVC or current sensing phono preamplifiers such as Haniwa’s HEQA03, designed solely to handle the characteristics of this unique current based signal.  The result is a vinyl playback system with the high sensitivity, resolution and dynamics.

For more information on the Haniwa HCTR01 Mark II and a complete product brochure,

Download Datasheet

Why design a new approach to vinyl playback?

Most Moving Coil or “MC” cartridges have high voltage output and thus high impedance and inductance to achieve this output level.  These values cause much higher distortion of the output signal waveform.  Because of this, we set out to develop new cartridges with the lowest possible impedance & inductance.  The results are the flagship Haniwa HCTR-CO MkII cartridge and the Haniwa HCTR01 Mark II cartridge.  They use a moving coil of almost zero impedance and inductance.  Due to this fact, they require a current to voltage converter or a current based phono preamplifier instead of a typical voltage phono preamplifier.  These cartridges are capable of retrieving all of the music hidden deep inside record grooves to precisely capture the entire signal without missing any detail.

The result

The new Haniwa approach audio reproduction can sound complicated, but in truth, it simply means that the music on the record grooved is accurately and precisely reproduced.  We believe that Haniwa accurately delivers an order of magnitude improvement in detail and sonics from your LP’s.