Denon DL301MK2 Moving-Coil Cartridge - Dreamedia AV
Vendor: Denon

Denon DL301MK2 Moving-Coil Cartridge

Premium moving-coil cartridge for vinyl

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Denon DL301MK2 Moving-Coil Cartridge

Experience the Pinnacle of Analog Sound with Denon DL-301MK2

In the world of high-fidelity audio, the quest for the perfect sound is a journey of precision engineering and passion for music. Enter the Denon DL-301MK2 Moving-Coil Cartridge, a masterpiece crafted to bring every nuance of your vinyl collection to life. Whether you're a seasoned audiophile or a vinyl enthusiast, the DL-301MK2 is your ticket to an immersive listening experience that echoes the warmth and richness of live performances.

Unleashing Dynamic Sound

The Denon DL-301MK2 is not just a cartridge; it's a gateway to rediscover your music. With its moving coil design, it delivers a sound that is both dynamic and faithful to the original recording. The cartridge's ability to produce a neutral sound full of air and vitality ensures that from the deepest bass to the highest treble, your music is rendered with clarity and precision.

  • Dynamic Sound: Revel in the cartridge's ability to bring out the energy in your music.
  • Low Resonance: The design minimizes resonance, allowing for a cleaner and more detailed sound.
  • Light Tracking Force: Protects your records with a gentle touch while extracting every musical detail.

Precision Crafted for Performance

Denon's commitment to quality shines through in every component of the DL-301MK2. The special elliptical stylus and aluminum cantilever ensure outstanding trace capability, capturing every subtlety of the record's grooves. The copper coil wire material is chosen for its excellent conductivity, enhancing the overall sound quality.

  • Stylus Shape: A special elliptical design for superior tracking and detail retrieval.
  • Cantilever: Aluminum pipe construction for rigidity and accurate sound reproduction.

Robust Construction Features

The DL-301MK2's aluminum body isn't just for show. It's a core part of the cartridge's design, providing a rigid and resonant-free environment for the moving coil mechanism. This results in a pure, uncolored sound that lets your records shine.

  • Body Material: High-quality aluminum for strength and acoustic neutrality.
  • Rigid Body Construction: Eliminates unnecessary resonance for a cleaner sound.

Designed for Easy Integration

Compatibility is key when it comes to turntable setups. The DL-301MK2 is designed to work seamlessly with a wide range of tonearms and headshells, making it a versatile choice for any system. Its standard mounting and compliance with medium tonearm mass mean you can upgrade your turntable with ease.

  • Compatibility: Fits standard tonearms and headshells, making it a breeze to integrate into your existing setup.
  • Recommended Load Impedance: Optimized for systems with an impedance above 100 ohms.

Enhance Your Home Theater System

Dreamedia is at your service to ensure that the Denon DL-301MK2 is not just another component in your setup, but a transformative addition to your home theater system. Our experts are available to design and integrate the perfect audio solutions, ensuring that this cartridge works in harmony with your environment for the ultimate listening experience.

Package Contents and Setup

The DL-301MK2 comes with everything you need for a straightforward setup. From the stylus brush to the installation tools, Denon has included all the essentials to get you up and running quickly and accurately.

  • Stylus Brush: Keep your stylus clean for the best sound and longevity.
  • Screws and Installation Tool: Everything you need for a secure and proper installation.

Notable Systems for Testing

To ensure the DL-301MK2 performs at its best, it has been thoroughly tested with a variety of high-quality audio systems. From preamps to amplifiers, this cartridge has proven its ability to enhance sound across a range of equipment, delivering a performance that is both impressive and consistent.

Embrace the Art of Listening

The Denon DL-301MK2 Moving-Coil Cartridge is more than just a component; it's a statement of your love for music in its purest form. By choosing this cartridge, you're not just listening to records; you're experiencing them. With its neutral yet vibrant sound, every record becomes a performance, every note a revelation.

  • Neutral Sound with Vitality: Enjoy a balanced audio experience that brings your music to life.
  • Detailed Performance: Hear every detail across all music genres, from classical to rock.

The Denon Difference

With the DL-301MK2, Denon continues its legacy of delivering high-fidelity audio equipment that respects the art of music. Every aspect of this cartridge has been engineered to produce sound that is true to the original recording, providing you with an audio experience that is both authentic and engaging.

  • Made in Japan: Quality assurance from a country renowned for its precision and craftsmanship.
  • Durability: The aluminum body not only enhances sound but also ensures the cartridge's longevity.

Technical Specifications

Understanding the specifications of the DL-301MK2 is key to appreciating its capabilities in your audio setup. Here's a snapshot of what makes this cartridge exceptional:

  • Type: Moving Coil (MC)
  • Output Voltage: 0.4mV
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz - 60kHz
  • Channel Separation: 25dB at 1kHz
  • Channel Balance: 1dB at 1kHz
  • Recommended Load Impedance: Above 100 ohms
  • Compliance: 13x10^-6 cm/dyne
  • Stylus Shape: Special elliptical
  • Stylus Construction: Nude square shank
  • Cantilever: Aluminum pipe
  • Coil Wire Material: Copper
  • Mounting: Standard 1/2 inch
  • Weight: 5 grams
  • Recommended Tonearm Mass: Medium
  • Color: Gold/Black
  • Recommended Tracking Force: 1.4g ± 0.2g

Pros at a Glance

Let's summarize the advantages that make the DL-301MK2 a stellar choice for any audiophile:

  • Impressive Compatibility: Works with a variety of systems and turntables.
  • Enhanced Sound Quality: Improved output performance for a detailed sound.
  • Musicality: Delivers punchy lows, warm mids, and clear highs.
  • Customer Reviews: Praised for improved sound quality and performance.
  • Wide Soundstage: Smooth sound with exceptional detail and breadth.
  • Excellent Tracking: Maintains contact with the groove for accurate playback.

Your Next Step to Audio Nirvana

The Denon DL-301MK2 Moving-Coil Cartridge is waiting to elevate your music listening to new heights. With its combination of dynamic sound, precision engineering, and user-friendly design, it's an investment in your audio passion. Dreamedia is here to guide you through every step of the setup and integration process, ensuring that this cartridge becomes the heart of your listening experience. Rediscover your vinyl collection with the Denon DL-301MK2 and hear what you've been missing.

Our Review

Denon DL-301MK2 Moving-Coil Cartridge Review


The Denon DL-301MK2 is a moving-coil cartridge that aims to deliver an exceptional analog audio experience to vinyl enthusiasts. A cartridge is a critical component in the vinyl playback chain, and the DL-301MK2 promises to enhance the listening experience with its refined engineering.

Design and Build Quality

Sporting a classic gold and black color scheme, the Denon DL-301MK2 exudes a sense of premium craftsmanship. The cartridge's rigid body construction is designed to eliminate unnecessary resonance, thereby improving sound quality. Its unique damping system ensures tonal consistency by compensating for temperature-induced variations, which is a testament to Denon's attention to detail.

Specifications and Features

The DL-301MK2 boasts an output voltage of 0.4mV and a frequency response ranging from 20Hz to 60kHz, which is indicative of its ability to produce detailed and dynamic audio across a wide spectrum. With a compliance of 13 x 10-6 cm/dyne, it provides an excellent tracking ability. The special elliptical solid diamond stylus is engineered for precision, ensuring that the nuances of each record are accurately captured.

Installation and Compatibility

Installation of the DL-301MK2 is straightforward for those familiar with turntable setup. Its compatibility with popular turntables like the Audio-Technica AT-PL120 and Technics SL-1200 Mk II, among others, makes it a versatile choice. However, users need to ensure they have an MC phono stage or step-up transformer to accommodate the cartridge's moving coil design.

Sound Quality

Denon's DL-301MK2 delivers a sound that is neutral yet full of life—vital for an authentic vinyl listening experience. It performs admirably across various music genres, from the warmth of jazz to the complexity of classical compositions. The cartridge maintains a balanced sound profile without the pronounced midrange peak often found in MC cartridges, providing a true-to-recording audio experience.

Performance Analysis

The DL-301MK2 shines when tasked with complex musical pieces, such as Rostropovich and Britten's performance of Schubert's Arpeggione Sonata. It demonstrates an incisive tracking ability and a commendable suppression of surface noise, which contributes to a pristine listening environment. The initial break-in period is crucial for the cartridge to reach its full potential, revealing a more detailed and articulate sound over time.

Pros and Cons

Among its many strengths, the DL-301MK2's compatibility with a range of systems, its exceptional sound quality, and its value stand out. Notably, its higher output level provides a strong response, contributing to a sound that is both punchy and detailed. On the downside, it may not deliver the same level of drama as some high-end cartridges, and compatibility with vintage equipment can be limiting for some users.

User Experiences

Feedback from users who have paired the DL-301MK2 with a variety of audio systems corroborates the technical findings. The improved sound quality and dynamic performance have been consistently praised, reinforcing the cartridge's reputation in the audiophile community.

Value and Positioning in the Market

When compared to its competitors, the DL-301MK2 stands out for its combination of performance and affordability. It is an excellent choice for those looking to upgrade from a basic cartridge without venturing into the high-end price territory.

Final Thoughts

The Denon DL-301MK2 is a compelling option for vinyl enthusiasts seeking to elevate their audio experience. Its neutral sound profile, coupled with the ability to articulate nuances across the audio spectrum, makes it a worthy component in any home audio setup. While it may not match the allure of some top-tier cartridges, it holds its own with a solid performance that is sure to satisfy most listeners. The DL-301MK2 is well-suited for those who appreciate the finer details in music and are looking for a reliable and high-performing cartridge that won't break the bank.


General Specifications

  • Type: Moving Coil (MC)
  • Output Voltage: 0.4mV
  • Frequency Response: 20Hz - 60kHz
  • Channel Separation: 25dB at 1kHz
  • Channel Balance: 1dB at 1kHz
  • Recommended Load Impedance: Above 100 ohms
  • Compliance: 13x10-6 cm/dyne
  • Stylus Shape: Special elliptical
  • Stylus Construction: Nude square shank
  • Cantilever: Aluminum pipe
  • Coil Wire Material: Copper
  • Mounting: Standard 1/2 inch
  • Weight: 5 grams
  • Recommended Tonearm Mass: Medium
  • Compatibility: Compatible with standard tonearms and headshells
  • Color: Gold/Black
  • Recommended Tracking Force: 1.4g ± 0.2g
  • Recommended Load Capacitance: 100 pF

Performance Features

  • Dynamic Sound: Yes
  • Low Resonance: Yes for enhanced detail retrieval
  • Detail Retrieval: High due to low levels of resonance
  • Sound Quality: High-fidelity moving coil performance
  • Trace Capability: Outstanding
  • Light Tracking Force: Yes

Construction Features

  • Body Material: Aluminum
  • Rigid Body Construction: Yes, for improved performance
  • Body Style: Updated for improved performance
  • Resin Frame: High-strength unified
  • Case: Light-alloy precision-engineered
  • 2-Way Dumping System: Yes, suppresses tonal variations due to temperature changes

Additional Information

  • Made in: Japan
  • Sound Reproduction: Highly resolving and detailed
  • Durability: Yes, due to aluminum body construction
  • Resonance Control: Yes, due to aluminum body construction
  • Quality Control: Excellent, made in Japan
  • Setup: Easy to align and set up

Package Contents

  • Stylus Brush: Yes
  • Screws: 2 sets of different lengths for cartridge headshell
  • Installation Tool: Yes
  • Specs Certificate: Yes, with plotted frequency response

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