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DS Audio W3 Phono Cartridge


Introducing the new DS Audio reference system 

This is in stock 

DS Audio elevates the sound of vinyl playback with their latest optical cartridge set. This pure analog playback system implements the newest “dual-mono” generator from their flagship Grand Master cartridge, resulting in enhanced clarity, improved imaging, and greater musical involvement.  

DS Audio DS W3 Optical Cartridge Set:  $15,000 
includes the W3 optical cartridge and W3 phono stage/equalizer. 

Incredibly low effective mass.

In the new dual-mono optical generator, the shading plate is redesigned for optimal position and agility. Using 99.9% beryllium instead of aluminum found in previous designs, the weight is significantly reduced by 50%. This is less than 1/10th of the mass found in the moving coil of a typical MC cartridge. This incredibly low effective mass promotes even greater trackability and reduced resonance, further improving the advantages of DS Audio optical cartridges.

Line contact stylus, boron cantilever, ultra-rigid body design, and improved internal wiring.

The DS W3 cartridge features a line contact diamond stylus with a boron cantilever. The cartridge body is machined of A5052 aluminum and the body structure is designed for maximum rigidity. The DS W3 internal wiring is 1.6 times thicker than in the second-generation optical cartridges, reducing resistance for improved signal flow.


A balanced output equalizer for the DS W3 cartridge

The W3 equalizers create the perfect mate for the W3 cartridges. Echoing the industrial design of the Grand Master eq, the W3 eq’s sculptural styling reflects the 3rd generation from DS Audio. Discrete circuitry with critical signal paths wired point-to-point assures that the 3rd generation W3 optical cartridge generator performs to its optimal level.

Compared to the DS W2 equalizer, the thickness of the circuit board has been increased from 1.6 mm to 2.0 mm for greater vibration control. For enhanced conductivity, the thickness of the copper foil on these new circuit boards has been increased from 35 μ to 70 μ and they are populated with new film capacitors. The DS W3 equalizer provides both XLR and RCA outputs and four different roll-off curves for the low-frequency range, allowing you to best match your system and optimize bass response for your speakers and listening room.


DS Audio’s technology allows unmatched performance. 


The DS W3 optical phono cartridge brings the latest generation of optical cartridge sound, as found in the Grand Master cartridge, to a new level of performance.

The DS W3 cartridge and W3 phono stage when sold as a set are a perfectly matched pair. They are compatible with all DS Audio optical cartridges and equalizers providing many choices and upgrade paths for the ultimate in pure analog vinyl enjoyment.