Audio Origin

B&O Stylus Retipping and Cartridge Restoration

7 year guarantee

If you are thinking of getting your stylus reconditioned then it would be well worth your time to read this outline of stylus specifications to help you make the right choice...

Below are options using different parts, the cheapest rebuild option is usually £209, higher specs offer better audio quality and in some cases, a longer useful life which is why the £399 option is the cheapest per hour also they are compared to original specifications for reference.

If the original diamond is in good condition (checked under microscope) suspension only repairs are possible £199

For all other repairs full rebuild is available as follows

Nude Elliptical Diamond, Aluminium cantilever £209 Useful life: 1000 hours under ideal conditions

This is a spherical diamond that has some of the front and back ground off, this allows the diamond to more accurately reproduce high frequencies The upgrade to elliptical from spherical is quite evident in sound quality in the vast majority of systems.

Closest to original B&O cartridge spec: SP12 MMC4000 SP15 MMC20EN MMC3

Slight upgrade from: MMC5 MMC4 MMC10E MMC20E

Significant Upgrade from: SP14 SP10 MMC20S MMC3000

Line Contact Diamond, Aluminium cantilever £299 Useful life: 2000 hours under ideal conditions

This extended contact design allows the diamond to more accurately reproduce high frequency’s, in comparison to the elliptical design, it has more contact area which reduces record wear significantly and is able to track with slightly less force. This represents a further upgrade in sound quality over the Elliptical, in addition it lasts longer.

Closest to original B&O cartridge spec: MMC5000

Significant Upgrade from: SP12 MMC3 MMC20EN MMC4000

Nude Micro Ridge Diamond, Boron Cantilever £399 Useful life: 4000 hours under ideal conditions

Micro Ridge is an advancement of the line contact design, in audio quality and useful life due to a small carefully shaped ridge which wears equally keeping the same shape as new for a much longer time than other basic extended contact styli so they continue to perform well and not damage records for approximately twice as long as other extended contact styli, offered paired with a Boron cantilever which is better than sapphire for audio quality due to being harder, It measures 9.5 Mohs with diamond at 10 Mohs and sapphire at 9 Mohs. This increase in strength gives better audio quality as the movement is more accurately transferred to the generator also since it is harder than sapphire it is also much less likely to break in the event of an accident. This specification surpasses all original Bang and Olufsen designs, in audio fidelity and useful life.

Upgrade from B&O cartridge spec: Every cartridge that will work on any B&O product

Nude Micro Ridge Diamond, Diamond Cantilever £1500 Useful life: 4000 hours under ideal conditions

The option for anyone who wants to get the best possible audio quality the same as above with the improvement of having a diamond cantilever this is harder than boron which gives an increase in audio quality, this is a particularly rare part due to the high expense of manufacturing a solid diamond cantilever, it has the advantage of transferring the movement from the stylus to the generator more accurately than any other cantilever type available.

Useful life: 4000 hours under ideal conditions


Repair is possible on all B&O cartridges.

If the channels are not good, an additional charge of £40 can be paid for channel repair.

If you send them in then they will be examined and you will be informed if there is channel issue.

The vast majority do not require channel repair work.

If however you want to test it yourself instructions are at the bottom of this page.

Finding the original spec for your cartridge

Take a look below to find the original specification for your cartridge;

SP series,
SP14 Stylus: Bonded Spherical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
SP10 Stylus: Nude Spherical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
SP12 Stylus: Nude Elliptical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube

MMC 20X
MMC20S - Stylus: Bonded Spherical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
MMC20E Stylus: Bonded Elliptical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
MMC10E Stylus: Bonded Elliptical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
MMC20EN Stylus: Nude Elliptical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
MMC20CL - Stylus: Nude Contact line Diamond - Cantilever: Sapphire rod

MMCX000
MMC3000 Stylus: Bonded Spherical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
MMC4000 Stylus: Nude Elliptical Diamond - Cantilever: Aluminium tube
MMC5000 Stylus: Bonded Contact line Diamond – Cantilever: Titanium tube
MMC6000 Stylus: Nude Pramanik (a Contact line variant) Diamond - Cantilever: Beryllium rod

MMCX
MMC5 Stylus: Bonded Elliptical Diamond – Cantilever: Aluminium tube
MMC4 Stylus: Bonded Elliptical Diamond - Cantilever: Tapered Aluminium tube cantilever
MMC3 Stylus: Nude Elliptical Diamond - Cantilever: Tapered Aluminium tube cantilever
MMC2 Stylus: Nude Contact line Diamond - Cantilever: Sapphire tube
MMC1 Stylus: Nude Contact line Diamond – Cantilever: Sapphire tube



What's the difference between nude and bonded?

A nude stylus is one solid gemstone, usually diamond. This gives the best audio quality. A bonded stylus has a small diamond bonded to a shank, this increases effective tip mass of the stylus and decreases audio quality.

What is a cantilever?

It is a small rod that holds the stylus. Lots of different materials can be used, the most common is an aluminium tube as it is cheap to manufacture and works quite well, but it has drawbacks. The main issue with this design is its not very stiff and so does not effectively move all the energy from the stylus tip to the moving iron cross. As such higher performance cartridges make use of better materials - listed below are most of the materials commonly used with a short comparison to other materials used.

Cantilever materials ordered from Worst to Best

  • Aluminium tube – Cost-effective more resistant to damage than sapphire or ruby.

  • Sapphire/ ruby – Sapphire and ruby are identical to each other in performance, they offer better audio quality than aluminium but are very fragile.

  • Beryllium - similar properties to sapphire/ruby.

  • Boron - These are significantly stiffer than sapphire and give better audio quality but also have a huge advantage that due to the large increase in stiffness they are much less likely to break when mishandled these are more resistant to damage than all the above.

  • Diamond - This is the best cantilever material available in all regards.

Extras

conversion to mono £20 available for all B&O cartridges

Postage options

Royal mail postage options

UK free post

Worldwide + £7.50

How to test both channels are good. (If they are not good a repair price of £40 is applicable)

Please note you are not required to do these tests as each cartridge will be tested on arrival and you will be informed if your cartridge has a fault. However if you want to test them yourself, then here is how to do it;

Every stereo phono cartridge has two coils one for each channel. The best way to test that these coils are functioning as intended is to use an ohmmeter to test the resistance. Each coil should measure about the same as the other. If both are the same or similar resistance then the coils are fine.

For B&O styli and cartridges this method can be applied for the MMC1-5 cartridge, the resistance should be approximately 700-800 ohms for this series. The two opposing pins are one coil and the other two opposing pins are the other coil. If both coils measure about the same resistance then it's fine.

For other cartridges, the resistance varies but this method can be applied to any stereo phono cartridge. Or if you are able to play a record and audio comes from both channels as long as your system is all working correctly and mono is not engaged then both coils are fine.

For the MMC20xx and MMCx000, these are difficult to test as the contacts are hard to get to. The easiest method is to use one of the ¼ inch adapters to make the contacts easier to test. If you do not have one of these then you can use thin probes to test inside. For this series, the two furthest to the right are one coil, and the two furthest to the left are the other coil. The resistance should be approximately 700-800 ohms for each coil.

I want to send in my cartridge

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