After the worldwide success of the Hana EL and Hana SL MC cartridges, the Japanese manufacturer Excel Sound Co decided to increase its range by releasing a high end cartridge dedicated to monophonic vinyl records: the Hana SL Mono.
HANA SL MONO: BODY
From the outside, nothing differentiates it from the Hana SL, apart from the “MONO” silkscreen on its flank.
The body is made in a synthetic matter that looks like tinted Delrin in the mass of a satin black.
HANA SL MONO: CANTILEVER
The cantilever, like on every cartridge of this range, is in aluminium. This material was chosen because it is light and neutral.
It is equipped with a superb 0.27x1.57 mil “Nude Shibata” elliptical stylus. It has a stellar traceability and is remarkable on surface noises.
Hana is not very clear regarding the design and technology of the generator. However, it is believed that the generator is made up of two coils wrapped around the famous “cross” (Excel Sound Co patent).
HANA SL MONO: SET UP
Hana recommends a load of more than 200 Ohms to get the best out of this SL Mono cartridge.
If your Hi-Fi system is relatively neutral, and if your phono preamp enables you to do so, we recommend a load between 300 Ohms and 1500 ohms.
We set up the Sutherland KC Vibe phono preamp on 475 Ohms and obtained a very convincing result.
HANA SL MONO: TESTING AND LISTENING
On our 1960 Japanese Sonny Rollins “Saxophone Colosus” mono vinyl record, you can instantly here the use of the Hana SL mono. The coherence of the instruments and the finesse of the timbre and sound restitution are remarkable.
We are completely under the spell of this MC cartridge which clearly favours timbre and nuance. Therefore, the soundstage and the placement of the musicians are unrivalled with a stereo cartridge. That is what makes it so interesting!
The bass is particularly articulated and tense. The midrange has a surprising presence for a phono cartridge of this range.
Transparency is also widely present and the level of detail is surprising.
The Hana SL Mono MC cartridge will delight all demanding music lovers that have a Classical, Jazz, Soul, or Rock vinyl record collection.
A new benchmark!
The Audiophile Man - Groovy 8/10
Principle: Monophonic MC low output
Stylus: Nude Shibata
Stylus profile: 0.27x1.57 mil
Output voltage: 0.4 mV
Tracking force: 2g
Bandwidth: 15-32000 Hz
Internal impedance: 23 Ohms
Load resistance: > 200 Ohms