This is a very clean Grado The Reference standard output phono cartridge. It is one of Grado’s top of the line and is generally felt to be one of the finer cartridges you can buy. Especially if you have a phono stage that doesn’t have the gain for low output moving coils this is one cartridge you should check out. Joe Grado, who invented the moving coil cartridge, later stopped manufacturing them in preference to his Flux-Bridger design which has many of the advantages of a moving coil cartridge - low tip mass, optimized damper, fixed pivot point, etc. – without the drawback of low output. Grado is really the only company making reference level cartridges, unfailingly smooth and musical reproducers, with a high output that will work with almost any standard moving magnet phono stage.
Grado’s The Refence sells for $1500.00 new, but here you have the opportunity to get a near new one for much less. This particular The Reference is very clean as you can see from the photos. This The Reference has only been mounted to one tonearm (on a high end Linn Sondek LP12 setup). It has almost no wear visible on the stylus under a high-powered microscope and a trained technician at the local Grado/Linn dealer estimates it to have about 90%, or better, of its life left. The sound is still quite wonderful. Grado also have a rebuild program for this cartridge in which the cartridge is completely rebuilt with new stylus and brought back to original specs. It costs about half the price of a new cartridge when it is needed. The Grado The Reference will be very well packed in its original wooden box as shown, and will be shipped with stock Grado mounting hardware and the original stylus guard. This will be packed with plenty of packing material around it in a much larger box to assure safe arrival. The purchaser will pay for actual shipping and insurance from Zip code 48185. I will cover the costs of the packaging. I accept Cashier's Checks, Money Orders and PayPal. Please email me with any questions.