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Headshell/Cartridge Combo Kit

U.S. One-Year Limited End-User Warranty

*Manufacturer's Suggested Retail Price. Actual selling price may vary; please check with an authorized Audio-Technica dealer.

  • Overview
  • Features
  • Specifications
  • Reviews
  • Q & A

  • Overview

    The VM540ML/H combo kit includes the VM540ML MicroLine® dual moving magnet cartridge premounted on the AT-HS10BK universal 1/2"-mount headshell.

    The VM540ML MicroLine® stylus cartridge is the premier 500 Series model in Audio-Technica’s new VM cartridge line – a line that harks back to A-T’s early days as a manufacturer primarily of high-end phono cartridges, while also incorporating today’s advanced technology. Like all VM cartridges, the VM540ML is equipped with dual magnets that are positioned to match the left and right channels in the stereo record groove for outstanding channel separation and extended frequency response. The cartridge’s MicroLine® stylus allows it to trace the record groove with incredible accuracy, resulting in nuanced audio reproduction that elliptical and conical styli simply can’t match. The stylus’s multilevel shape also wears better than other styli, while reducing the wear on your records. Includes mounting hardware.

  • Features

    • VM dual magnet cartridge with MicroLine® stylus

    • Aluminum cantilever

    • Paratoroidal coils improve generating efficiency

    • Center shield plate between the left and right channels reduces crosstalk

    • Durable low-resonance polymer cartridge housing

    • Universal ½"-mount headshell for 4-pin turntable cartridges

  • Specifications

    Frequency Response 20-27,000 Hz
    Channel Separation 28 dB (1 kHz)
    Vertical Tracking Angle23°
    Vertical Tracking Force 1.8-2.2 g (2.0 g standard)
    Stylus Construction Nude square shank
    Recommended Load Impedance 47,000 ohms
    Coil Impedance2,700 ohms (1 kHz)
    DC Resistance800 ohms
    Coil Inductance460 mH (1 kHz)
    Recommended load capacitance100-200 pF
    Output 4.0 mV (at 1 kHz, 5 cm/sec)
    Channel Balance 1.0 dB (1 kHz)
    Stylus Shape 2.2 x 0.12 mil MicroLine®
    Cantilever Aluminum tapered pipe
    Static Compliance40 x 10-6 cm/dyne
    Dynamic Compliance10 x 10-6 cm/dyne (100 Hz)
    Mount Half-inch
    WeightCartridge 6.4 g (0.2 oz); Cartridge & Headshell 16.8 g (0.6 oz)
    DimensionsCartridge 17.3 mm (0.7") H x 17.0 mm (0.7") W x 28.2 mm (1.1") D; Cartridge & Headshell 21.3 mm (0.8") H x 21.0 mm (0.8") W x 60.4 mm (2.4") D
    Replacement Stylus VMN40ML

  • Reviews

  • Q & A

    Hello, I'd like to know if the VM540ML/H headshell/cartridge combo comes prealigned for the AT-LP5 turntable (plug-and-play). Also, does that cartridge's comlpliance, rake, etc match well to the AT-LP5's tonearm (vs. the stock AT95E/AT95Ex)? Thank you!


    No, the VM540ML cartridge is not prealigned as each turntable will have different compliance, etc. You may use the protractor in the AT-LP5 manual to properly align the cartridge for your turntable.


    Is the VM540ML/H Headshell/Cartridge Combo Kit interchangeable with the AT95E/HSB Headshell/Cartridge Combo Kit that came with my Audio Technica AT-LP120 Direct Drive Professional Turntable, can you simply switch one out for the other.


    Yes, the VM540ML/H may be used with the AT-LP120-USB turntable by simply swapping out the headshells to the tone arm. You will want to make certain the proper tracking force is set depending on which cartridge you are using. The AT95E tracking force is 1.5-2.5 grams whereas the VM540ML tracking force is 1.8-2.2 grams.


    what is the stylus tracking force required for the AT-LP120-USB turntable


    The tracking force is based on the cartridge being used. For the VM540ML cartridge, the recommended tracking force is 1.8-2.2 grams in relation to a zero balanced tone arm.


    This is a three part question: One is this head shell, cartridge, stylus pre-assembled and properly aligned when shipped? Two is it compatible with my LP120? Three is the VM540ML/H the top of the line in this series and will it out perform my current AT95E/HSB cartridge and stylus that I currently have on my LP


    1. No, it is not aligned as each alignment for turntables will be different. 2. Yes. 3. The VM540ML is an upgrade to the AT95E cartridge.


    Hi, I have an Akai Professional bt500 turntable. It's pre-installed with AT95E/HSB. I would like to upgrade it to VM540ML/H and I wonder if it is compatible with my Akai Prof BT500. Please advice. Thank you.


    Yes, if you are using teh AT95E/HSB with the turntable, you will be able to use the VM540ML/H.


    HI there, for this combination is the cartridge pre-mounted to the head shell? If yes, which tonearm type and/or turntable geometry is it optimized for (i.e. LP120 / Technics 1200 MK2 etc)? Or are they separate and mounting/alignment is still required? Thanks


    Thanks for your inquiry. The cartridge is already mounted on the headshell. This cartridge and headshell will work with our LP120, LP1240, LP3, and LP5.

    I have a Audio Technica AT120E cartridge on my TEAC TN 570 turntable, and it works fine. However, I want to upgrade to your VM540ML cartridge. Is it compatible?, and what country is the cartridge manufactured?


    Thanks for your inquiry. The VM540ML is compatible with the Teac TN 570. The VM540ML is considered an upgrade of the AT120E. All of our cartridges are made in Japan.