Hot on the heels of the news that the Beatles’ mono albums have been remastered at Abbey Road for re-release on vinyl Ortofon has created a mono cartridge to get the best out of them. The 2M Mono Special Edition was developed in cooperation with Apple Records owner Universal Music Group in order to bring the fab and gear sound of these 180gm releases to life. According to Ortofon’s Leif Johannsen: “While a stereo cartridge can play mono records it can’t achieve the same signal precision between the two channels. A mono cartridge produces but one signal that is directed to both channels in the system. A mono cartridge playing a mono record produces a more forceful and stable image with a fuller, more impactful sound.” He’s not wrong.
Even the record company seems to have come round to the idea, Guy Hayden, VP at Universal Music Group: “Apple Corps Ltd and Universal Music Group have been paying great attention to the re-mastering of the original mono master tape to keep the original sound, as experienced by The Beatles back in the studio. Therefore, it was important to us to ensure that the first interaction with the vinyl, being the cartridge, provides the best possible replay. During our dialogue with Ortofon we realised the importance of using a mono cartridge for the full listening experience and we are pleased that they have decided to develop the 2M Mono Special Edition”.
The albums due for mono vinyl release are: Please Please Me, With The Beatles, A Hard Day's Night, Beatles For Sale, Help!, Rubber Soul, Revolver, Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band, Magical Mystery Tour as well as The Beatles (2-LP) and Mono Masters (3-LP). The 2M Mono Special Edition costs €500 and will be available only from Ortofon’s web shop at www.ortofon-shop.com, but it wasn’t there at the time of writing.