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Shure - M97xE Phono Cartridge

Shure - M97xE Phono Cartridge




Product No.:

Hi Output Cartridges

The Absolute Sound - 2013 Editors' Choice Awards
The Absolute Sound - 2012 Editors' Choice Awards
The Absolute Sound - 2011 Editors' Choice Awards
The Absolute Sound - 2010 Editors' Choice Awards
The Absolute Sound - 2009 Editors' Choice Awards
The Absolute Sound - 2008 Editors' Choice Awards
The Absolute Sound 2007 Editors' Choice Award

The M97xE is an excellent tracking, neutral, smooth-sounding magnetic cartridge designed to provide long hours of undistorted, easy listening, without fatiguing the ear or tiring the mind. This cartridge is able to accurately reproduce very difficult musical passages, particularly in the high-frequency range, where audio modulations are the smallest and most concentrated and stylus tip movement is consequently the most rapid. Its highly precise tracking ability and flat frequency response are made possible by Shure's unique Type II low-mass thin-wall aluminum alloy stylus cantilever, combined with a precision-crafted, finely polished, elliptical diamond tip.

M97xE Features & Specifications
Tone Arm Mount
* Standard 1/2 inch
Cartridge Type
* Moving magnet
* Dynamic Stabilizer damper
* Die cast aluminum mounting block
* Side Guard stylus protection system
* Shure Type II - Very low mass
* Heat-treated aluminum alloy / tubular
* 1.0 mil wall thickness / 20 mil diameter
Diamond Stylus Tip
* Polished natural gemstone
* Elliptical
* Side x front radii: 0.2 x 0.7 mil
Tracking Force
* Effective at stylus tip
* Range: 0.75 to 1.50 grams
* Optimum: 1.25 grams
At 1 gram tracking force (cm per second peak velocity)
* 1 kHz - 44
* 10 kHz - 31
* 80 µm at 400 Hz
Frequency Response
* Essentially flat from 20 to 22,000 Hz
Stereo Channel Balance
* Within 2 dB
Channel Separation
* Typical at 1 kHz: 25 dB
Output Voltage
* Typical at 1 kHz: 4.0 mV RMS at 5 cm/sec peak velocity
Recommended Load
* 47 kilohms in parallel with 250 pf
Net Weight
* 6.6 grams
* 15.875 mm
Accessories Included:
* Headshell Screwdriver
* Stylus cleaning brush
* User Guide
* Mounting hardware
* Stylus guard
* Full one-year
Replacement Stylus
* User-replaceable N97xE
Accessory Stylus
* For wide groove / 78 RPM recordings N78S

Customer Reviews (3.75 Stars) 8 person(s) rated this product.

Must be hit or miss

posted on 09/06/2014
4 Stars
Reviewer: John
I was a bit skeptical when I read the reviews, but when I priced and reviewed other units in the same range this seemed to fit into a "good buy" group. The issues mentioned above have yet to happen. The attached brush doesn't randomly fall, no odd hum. It did take a little while to break in but it sounds great. I'm hearing things in my records that I haven't heard before. I'll grant you it's probably not the best, but unless you'd like to pay a "car down payment" sized price tag this is a solid choice. However the defects I've read on these reviews do seem common on other sites selling this product as well. I rolled the dice and came out just fine; I feel confident that if I made the choice again I'd be happy, that or I'd get an exchange/refund.


posted on 01/20/2011
2 Stars
Reviewer: Not A Shure Thing
This cart was suppose to replace a bottom drawer Audio Technica that came on a Music Hall TT. Man, what a dog! Muffled sounding and for whatever reason was prone to feedback. The stylus brush (added the noted 1/2 gram) stuck in position and would literally push the stylus up out of the grooves. I'm passing this one on. Bleah.

Shure is a... surprise!!!

posted on 03/16/2010
4 Stars
Reviewer: Paulo
I bought mine 2 years ago,to be instaled on a Project Xpression 2, with a speedbox 1. This Project model have a decent carbon fiber arm (low mass),and detachable cables, so i suspect it will make a decent couple with the M97xE! Be cautious with the phono amp input resistance,minimum of 47KOhms//250pF required,but i prefered 75KOhms with 220pF+ cable cap.(70pF),with the LME49722 opamp in phono stage! See "". Good image and depth.Image width is about 12 inch outside speakers box, with decent recordings! Good detail retrieve with strong and detailed bass, voices and treble are effortless in presentation, a non stop player; sibilance is well behaved.If you have fingers to work arround the phono stage, then this cartridge is a bargain, with a long "brake in" time! At 47KOhms load lost expression in treble an ambience! Go for it if you like to tweak...its a damn surprise!!!Oh i forgot, it tracks and cleans very well too... Have fun!

good price for a good sound

posted on 09/15/2009
5 Stars
Reviewer: Joao Francisco (Brazil)
I'm very happy with this shure product, very deep bass and a good soundstage. now the only thing i must to do is change my tonearm for one of SME or Thorens. I don't know how of this works beter with this cartridge.

Hi-Fi Detail

posted on 02/19/2008
4 Stars
Reviewer: Drewcifer33&1/3
As my first audiophile quality cartridge, I have to say the Shure M97XE made a huge difference. Of course I know there is much higher I can go in terms of boutique quality and price, but this baby "shure" sounds good. The spacial detail, depth, stereo width and quietness all improved, while at the same time having a silky smoothness. The Shure made what I was using before sound like a rusty nail by comparison. And I don't have a high-end turntable (yet) so this was a good initial step for a 40-something venturing back in to the vinyl revival.


posted on 09/10/2007
1 Stars
Reviewer: steve
mine was faulty. weak sound and hum in right channel. hum increased in volume as my hand approached the tone arm. (refitting old cartridge and all was fine again)

As good as I could afford..

posted on 08/16/2006
5 Stars
Reviewer: David Hughes
I don't think I could afford a cartridge any better sounding. To get any better would cost hundreds.

Shure M97xE Excellent cartridge in Every Way

posted on 09/15/2005
5 Stars
Reviewer: Tom H
I've owned many cartridges made by Shure (V15 series), Stanton, Grado and Audio Technica/Signet. Based on my experience most people with excellent systems would benefit from investing in this cartridge and using the savings to stock up on more vinyl records. The cartridge is very well made, non-fatiguing and has a wide sound stage with good depth. It tracks well, passing all but the last track of the old Shure test tone record. The "top-end" is sweet and not overly bright and the transient reponse is good but not comparable to the V15 which is in a class by itself. There are cartridges with better transparency and depth but the differences are hard to justify. (Judgements made using Martin Logans, Linn arm on AR ES1, through Conrad Johnson electronics).

Highly recommended. . . Hope this is helpful

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