Japan-based Miyajima has been making phono cartridges for more than three decades. Although they were only discovered by American and European audiophiles in recent years, they have since received rave reviews all over the world.
With several patents under his belt, Noriyuki Miyajima is a passionate music-lover, a true artisan manufacturer and his cartridges are individually designed to produce stunning results not only from modern stereo LPs but equally from vintage mono and 78 rpm records. The company’s very first cartridges were true mono designs, making Miyajima almost unique.
Every Miyajima cartridge is handcrafted in-house by a dedicated full-time team of six based in Fukuoka, Japan. The cartridge bodies are individually precision-milled from rare and exotic tonewoods including ebony, rosewood and African blackwood (mpingo) which the company says a vibrant and natural tonality to the sound.
The generator system in the stereo cartridges features a patented Miyajima cross-ring design in which the cantilever fulcrum and coils are exactly positioned in the centre of the magnetic field. Similarly, the mono cartridges feature an equally unique design: Miyajima vertical axis concentration, which ensures that the cartridge responds accurately to the horizontal modulation of a mono signal.
“It was a real joy to discover Miyajima cartridges and I’m absolutely delighted to be now bringing the range to the UK market,” says Dave Cawley of Timestep, Miyajima’s new UK distributor. “I have the greatest respect for Noriyuki Miyajima, whose passion drives him to seek the very best musical performance from the older disc formats. Using a properly designed mono cartridge to replay mono records results in a sound that simply can’t be matched by using a stereo cartridge. There’s something really special about that marriage of vintage classics with cutting-edge technology. You can’t beat it.”
The cartridges are available now from £1295 to £2395