Sony XL-55

Sony XL-55Pro

1 9 7 6 november 1976
1 9 7 7 november 1977
1 9 8 5 1985

Superlative cart with an innovative coil : wound like an 8 ! And with a beryllium, aluminium and carbon cantilever !

The original XL-55 was developped at the same time the PS-X9 professional LP player was under development ; the XL-55Pro hand-picked version was at first kept for customers who bought a PS-X9, then made available separately, even for those who had a little PS-X7, big TTS-8000, new PS-X70 or old TTS-4000.

The Figure 8 coil was meant to address to recurrent problems of moving-coil : low output, field-disturbing iron core, and increase of coil turns to increase output.

By giving one part of the armature a 90° twist, the two halves of the coil do not cancel each other out but produce voltage with both inward and outward movements.
No need to use a stronger iron core or increase the number of coil turns : linearity is improved, the cantilever isn't burdened by a heavier coil and output is doubled - simple.

Quite a few versions were produced, from the original XL-55 to the hand-picked XL-55Pro version or XL-55 Mono.
The "lower" XL-44 shared the same Figure 8 coil and round air-core armature ; the XL-44B did as well. Some of the latter even saw Wega versions (extra-extra-extra-extra-rare) along with the XL-33 and XL-33S.

The later XL-44L (red body) and XL-33L (blue body) are 1980 versions without integrated magnesium headshell but were updated designs (if cheaper than the 55 original) and truly excellent cartridges.

Briefly made as well later on : XL-55II and the ultimate XL-55ProII.
The XL-55 and XL-55Pro/II are heavyweight moving coil cartridges : they fit a PUA-1600L or a PUA-7 but don't go put them on a PS-X800 !

Sony's cartridge department was enhanced when the fully-Sony affiliated Sony SoundTec Corporation was formed in 1976 to carry on research on stereo cartridges. Needless to say, SoundTec had by 1983 less horizon ahead and the fully-Sony owned corporation closed its doors circa 1985.

More about those excellent MC carts here and here.

Sony XL-55, image 1 Sony XL-55, image 2 Sony XL-55, image 3
Sony XL-55 specifications
Title Value
Type : Figure 8 moving-coil cartridge
Round type air-core armature
High-efficiency RING-magnet circuit
Aluminium-beryllium-carbon cantilever
Magnesium inetgrated headshell
Output level : 0,2mV
Response : 10Hz...50Khz (XL-55 ; 10Hz...45Khz ?]
10Hz...50Khz (XL-55Pro)
Separation : 30dB
Impedance : 40 Ohm (/channel @ 1Khz)
Load impedance : 40 Ohm
Compliance : 15 x 10-6
Cantilever angle : 24°
Tracking force : 1,0...2,2g (1,7g optimal ; XL-55)
1,5...2,5g (20,g optimal ; XL-55Pro)
Diamond : 0,3 x 0,8mil, elliptical diamond
Headshell : no (XL-55)
yes, integrated magnesium (XL-55Pro)
Weight : 10,0g. (XL-55)
22,0g. (XL-55Pro)
How much : 30,000¥ (XL-55)
37,000¥ (XL-55Pro)
Sony XL-55 : 0 topic
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page online since : october 2005
page updated : october 2010
page type : LGT / KNB
page weight : 176.61 Kb / 0 b

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