Sumiko Starling cartridge front 3 quarter over white background
Sumiko Starling cartridge rear 3 quarter over white background
Sumiko Starling cartridge profile over white background

Sumiko Starling | Moving Coil Phono Cartridge

Regular price$1,799.00

Sumiko logo black

Realize Next-level Sonic Imaging with Sumiko's Starling Low Output Moving Coil Phono Cartridge

  • Principle: Moving Coil
  • Rigid boron cantilever finished with an ultra-low-mass Microridge diamond stylus for an even-handed yet rich, clear performance
  • "Very crisp and detailed but it has a poise, polish and panache that is alluringly addictive” – Adam Smith, Hifi News
  • Each cartridge handcrafted in Yokohama, Japan

Sumiko Starling cartridge front 3 quarter over two tone black and raspberry background

Next-Gen Reference Moving Coil Pickup

If a picture is worth 1000 words, Starling propels the question of what a sonic image might be worth. Evident in the very existence of our hobby is music’s unique ability to reach us with a certain profundity that exists well outside of what we can hear. It can be said that feelings are what we’re chasing, and if invoked by the most convincing portrayal of your dearest recordings, those feelings can be all the more profound. A sonic image can thus be priceless, and Sumiko has designed Starling to realize that image in your system.

Added to the resonance-optimized headblock & generator borrowed from Songbird, Starling implements a rigid boron cantilever finished with an ultra-low-mass Microridge stylus. Microridge is a diamond profile highly regarded worldwide for its even-handedness while simultaneously delivering richness & clarity. Bonded to the assembly, rarely has this famous stylus achieved such agility in the groove — certainly not at Starling’s price. What you experience is gorgeously suspended sonic imagery that places you just where you want to be: front & center.

The Latest Reference Open-body MCs

Sumiko is proud of their recent additions to their Reference open-body Moving Coil (MC) lineup. Their latest darlings — Songbird & Starling — are a heavy refinement on the tried & true Blackbird & BPS EVO III designs. Securely anchored to a highly rigid, resonance-optimized headblock, the new generator is free to work its magic with the utmost control, free of unwanted internal resonance. The generator assembly is flexible and sturdy, offering the highest fidelity possible in a perfect balance of clarity and romance. The result is industry-leading, holographic imaging with irresistibly ‘true’ sweetness. Each delivers a degree of honesty & refinement of which Sumiko couldn't be prouder or more excited for you to hear for yourself.

Trade In or Trade Up

User-replaceable styli are not an option for moving coil phono cartridges. But any Sumiko MC, functional or otherwise, can be returned to your dealer in a re-tip exchange — a discount on a new cartridge of equal or greater value — sparing you expense when your stylus heads south! Here’s how it works: the cartridge you own is worth 30% its retail value in trade. As an example, if you have a cartridge with a retail value of $1000, it’s worth $300 in trade toward your new cartridge. Your trade-in can be done through Bloom Audio as an authorized dealer. Note: Sumiko's trade-in program is valid within the United States only.

Hand-Crafted in Japan

From Oyster to Reference, each Sumiko phono cartridge is crafted by hand in Yokohama, Japan — near the waters where their namesake Oysters dwell. The finest materials have been ear-selected to deliver performance that has enlightened generations of listeners. Each design is thoroughly auditioned until perfected. Production is then executed by world-class cartridge makers with a collective eye for precision & quality. The result is a full horizon of cartridges eager to introduce themselves to your analog system — we firmly believe there’s a perfect cartridge for you here.

Moving coil charcoal sketch over white background


  • Design Principle: Moving Coil
  • Weight: 9.5g
  • Dimensions: 17mm x 18mm x 28.5mm
  • Stylus: Solid Ultra Low-Mass 75µm x 2.5µm Microridge
  • Cantilever: ⌀0.28mm Boron Shaft
  • Coils: High-Purity Copper
  • Internal Impedance: 28Ω
  • Load Impedance: > 100Ω
  • Frequency Response: 12Hz – 50kHz
  • Output: 0.5mV
  • Channel Separation: 35dB @ 1kHz
  • Channel Balance: < 0.5dB @ 1kHz
  • Compliance: 12×10-6cm/dyn @ 100Hz
  • Capacitance: 100pF – 200pF
  • Vertical Tracking Angle: 20°
  • Tracking Force Range: 1.8g – 2.2g
  • Recommended Tracking Force: 2.0g
  • Replacement Stylus Unit: Re-Tip Exchange (See Dealer)
  • Sumiko Cartridge 1 Year Warranty

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