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Van den Hul Black Beauty Special X - MC Moving Coil Cartridge
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Van den Hul Black Beauty Special X - MC Moving Coil Cartridge

£3,691.67 Exc. VAT |  



Van den Hul Black Beauty Special X - MC Moving Coil Cartridge

Our top model custom handbuilt phono cartridge, featuring matched crystal gold coils and 0.50 mV/channel output.
On special request medium and high output versions are available; (Their variations in other parameters are minor to those described here for the 0.50 mV/channel standard version).

The BLACK BEAUTY Special-X is a resolution improved version of the GRASSHOPPER IV GLA, which refinements were only possible to be created after having switched to the entirely metal free and extremely revealing The THIRD ® loudspeaker cable in Mr. van den Hul’s audio system.

The BLACK BEAUTY Special-X’s refined body is made of black PolyCarbonate with about the same construction as the GRASSHOPPER IV GLA. The BLACK BEAUTY Special-X sets new sonic standards in analog reproduction.

Listening impressions are like being in the concert hall with a very precise projection of the instruments, the acoustics and even the conductor in space. The music as a whole sounds extremely realistic and very convincing with a lot of authority, especially in the bass and lower midrange; the high frequencies are very pure and extremely nice structured.

The differences with the GRASSHOPPER IV GLA are:

  • Improved magnetic layout, construction and properties.
  • A reduced cantilever length.
  • Due to points 1 and 2 the resolution is higher.
  • The suspension uses a very special damping rubber.
  • There is more “space” between the musical instruments and vocals.
  • The output is reduced from 0.65 mV/ch. to 0.50 mV/ch. by using double layer Matched Crystal Gold coils on a cross-shaped armature, both producing a higher channel separation.

Production time:

  • The production time for a BLACK BEAUTY Special-X cartridge after ordering is about two weeks. 
version a) Standard
b) Medium Output
c) High Output
stylus replacement see (*1)
stylus shape VDH - IS
stylus radii 2 x 85 Micron
frequency range 5 - 65.000 Hz
tracking force 12 - 14 mN
see (*3)
static compliance 35 Micron/mN
tracking ability 70 Micron
output voltage

a) see (*4)
b) 1.0 mV RMS
c) 2.0 mV RMS

channel unbalance < 0.5 dB
channel separation

a) > 33 / > 28 dB
b) > 32 / > 28 dB
c) > 32 / > 28 dB

stylus tip mass 0.32 Milligram
system weight 8.5 Gram
vertical tracking angle 22 Degrees
load capacitance see (*2)
load impedance

a) > 500 Ohm
b) 47 kOhm
c) 47 kOhm

eff tone arm mass 6 - 10 Gram
moving coil resistance

a) 16 Ohm +/- 10%
b) 41 Ohm +/- 10%
c) 96 Ohm +/- 10%

extra info

(*1): Stylus replacement and other services available on request

(*2): Non critical

(*3): Items produced before October '98: 13.5 - 16 mN

(*4): Available in two varieties:

  • A more spatial sounding version with 0.50 mV/channel output for those who mostly play classical music.
  • A more dynamic sounding version with 0.65 mV/channel output for those who mostly play jazz and pop music.

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