What Hi Fi Sound and Vision Thu, 22 Apr 2010, 9:00am

Nagaoka MP110

Tested at £89
80100
4

As a first upgrade the Nagaoka MP-110 is a great choice that can hold its own against some stiff competition

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For

  • Light, breezy sound
  • great detailing and insight

Against

  • Lacks some dynamics and finesse
  • edgy treble

An affordable cartridge at just £62, the Nagaoka MP-110 tracks at a nominal 1.8g.

We found its square casing easy to fit and align, and from the outset our sample gave a bright, immediate sound that would work well in pepping up a dull system.

The MP-110 reveals a sweet midrange, although we'd like some more bass weight to support its light and breezy character.

Treble needs more refinement

The treble is also a touch edgy and not quite as refined as some closely priced rivals.

Dynamically, this cartridge aims above its price bracket, handling Scott Walker's syncopated Montague Terrace In Blue with ease and being able to hold its own against pricier competition.

Detail subtleties are also dealt with proficiently, and the vocals on the Dixie Cups' Chapel of Love possess an insight that's great at this price level.

For the money, this cheap and supremely cheerful cartridge represents good value, and those on a budget should hunt it down.

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