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Audio Technica AT-450 Reviews

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Audio Technica AT-450

Audio Technica AT-450

9/10 by VinylTune

This review is for the Audio Techinca AT450, and not the AT450E. They are different cartridges all together. The AT450 is a p-mount cartridge which looks much like an AT92E.

First of all, I have a YouTube video which you can watch that demonstrates this cartridge in action. The link is https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgKC8o5G8hs

My thoughts: This is a very good sounding moving magnet cartridge which can give the much more mainstream AT120E or AT130E a run for the money.

It reproduces sounds very clearly without any distortion. It can pick up very low bass frequencies quite well, and can pump out hi-hats and crash symbols with ease and clarity.

One must note that I have acquired this cartridge used and it came with an original Audio Technica stylus which is grey in color, and it has the empty-oval symbol above the word Japan. From what I found in another forum, the empty-oval indicates a (0.3x0.7)mil nude elliptical tip.

Given that I have no way of telling how many hours were played on this stylus, it must be very little because it still sounds really, really good. Comparing this to my AT100E (newer version with a black body on a red stylus), my AT100E I acquired new old stock. I have since then put maybe 3 hours total playtime on the AT100E. It too has a (0.3x0.7)mil special elliptical stylus. Though the AT100E sounds like it puts overemphasis on the high frequencies in comparison to the AT450. It also gives a sense of a slightly v-tapered frequency curve in contrast to the AT450 which has a more neutral frequency curve. In fact, I can notice a bit more mid tones than the AT100E.

Furthermore, the AT450 definitely has a wider sound stage with I think a few more dB in channel separation in comparison to the AT100E. You can really hear the difference in the video. I feel like the AT100E picks up on details a little better than the AT450, and it could be attributed to the low hours played on the AT100E since new compared to the unknown hours played on the AT450. But the overall clarity of sound reproduction, slightly bright on the midrange profile, and very good sound separation makes this AT450 really shine above the AT100E and I beg to compare this to an AT120E or a AT130E, I think that the AT450 will really give those two a difficult time.


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