… has arrived at me. I tested No 11 and here are my experiences:
When I first saw the Ortofon Century in 2018 I was not really touched by the looks of the 100 years cartridge. I just have to say, it looked so normal, like a box with a needle in front. What a misinterpretation! Maybe marketing was not the biggest focus Ortofon had on its mind here. On the other hand when you get in touch with the A95 you start to think different.
Nevertheless a kind of Bauhaus, simple and full with technology, in the audio segment it could be a typical characterization of Ortofon. Okay, let us forget their latest tonearms – but never the old RMGs/RMAs and their step ups. In the new Anniversary book you get an idea of the history, the changes in their product line – but unfortunately not too much about their nostalgic products. The As, Cs are mentioned but not really enough for my taste, the RMGs not at all ( maybe look into the Japanese Ortofon book listing all their products, Stereo Sound 1994).
Anyway this is the Century I am writing about. Uwe Kirbach put me into it writing about this Ortofon cart in the latest Image Hifi.
I learned about the technologies built in and…so my motivation was raised, as I am running too less carts 😂.
Kirbach used the Century in the Acoustical Systems ´ Axiom and described it pretty well. I have to say I was never disappointed following him on some cart recommendations, at latest of the Ortofon Cadenza Mono. When you see the Century you realize that Ortofon put 3 little heightenings on top of the cart ´s surface.
Should be an idea behind it!? Maybe a technical argument using three points like with tables. In the end I would not put it into my Aquilar arm thinking that in that case the headshell is not the best partner for this special Ortofon. My solution was the OMA headshell and the Fidelity research 66s on my double layer/motor SDP Micro Seiki table.
Correct Azimuth and Antiskating are important for the Century. While the Azimuth with its 92 degrees is not a big issue the Antiskating adjustment could be a topic. At the FR-66s you can raise the arm while playing, ears are man ´ s best instruments.
Antiskating, statically or not-linear (as wit the AS arms) is a sometimes neglected issue.
You have some arms and carts where you may really forget it, just take the old Ortofon arms or on the cart side the Neumann’s with its 6.0 p. weight or old EMT Bakelite carts.
I am not sure about the SME 3012R, have to examine it. The FR-66s is an arm where you can easily adjust, Antiskating is statical and not so strong.
Some people use their carts with too much drive to the right side and do damage the tracks of the record.
I learned from Dietrich Brakemeier that on the Fidelity Research 66s you put 2/3 of the weight at the counter weight, in this case 1.6 (from recommended 2.4) and 1/3 with the spring (dynamically) on the lateral weight. The Antiskating is to be set very close to the pivot joint.
Okay the cart is new but you may get an idea what it is able to deliver.I am not a good magazine writer and feel sometimes puzzled by their used descriptions. After 20 hours I think it is a very balanced, dynamical cart. Very precise, pushy and with a good depth. The Palladian is more lively but this Ortofon „is well educated“, strong and grown up. And it fills the room with a dramatical depth, building an atmosphere around you, nearly entangling the listener. It might become the senior cart (100) in my collection. It is warm but not too much, not of a real softness, more on the other side – dynamical! I guess with the right arm in a good system the Anniversary Ortofon is an enrichment, very enjoyable!