New SME-compatible headshell systems from Pro-Ject Audio Systems

Pro-Ject Audio Systems is now presenting an equally wide range of SME-compatible headshell systems to accompany the introduction of the particularly broad new product range of tonearms.

Story Highlights
  • Pro-Ject Audio Systems is now presenting a large number of new SME-compatible headshell systems to match its own tonearm systems.

In September 2023, Pro-Ject Audio Systems presented a particularly wide range of new tonearms as part of the Pro-Ject EVO Tonearm Series and Pro-Ject EVO Premium Tonearm Series product ranges. No fewer than 24 different versions are now available so that users can always choose the model that best suits their needs.

As part of this offensive in the tonearm sector, Pro-Ject Audio Systems has now announced the expansion of its range to include headshell systems.

Pro-Ject Audio Systems focuses on a new broad range of tonearms

Although Pro-Ject Audio Systems has always offered various accessory solutions and upgrade options in the vinyl sector, for many years it clearly focussed primarily on record players. Gradually, the company now wants to massively expand its range of record players, as it sees itself as a specialist for everything that optimises vinyl playback.

The market launch of the latest tonearms, which has already been mentioned, should also be seen in this context. Pro-Ject Audio Systems even spoke of shaking up the tonearm market as a whole and setting the bar a good deal higher, especially in terms of price-performance ratio.

Headshell systems as an optional addition to the range

It is only logical that a wide range of headshell systems is now also being launched on the market, with Pro-Ject Audio Systems claiming that it will be a range of high-quality yet affordable headshells designed to match the new tonearms.

However, as these are SME standard headsets, the new solutions are also suitable for any tonearm that has the appropriate equipment.

Manufactured with the highest precision

Pro-Ject Audio Systems explicitly emphasises that the new headshell systems are manufactured with the utmost precision, thanks to state-of-the-art CNC machining processes that the company’s production facilities can rely on.

Wide range of headshell systems

The Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Aluminium, Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Carbon and Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Oak systems were already part of the Pro-Ject Audio Systems range. This has now been expanded to include the Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Premium, Pro-Ject Headshell PRO Black and Pro-Ject Headshell PRO Carbon products.

Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Aluminium, Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Carbon and Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Oak

Behind the three products Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Aluminium, Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Carbon and Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Oak is ultimately one and the same headshell, but each made from a different material.

Whether aluminium, carbon or wood, each material is characterised by different properties, which are naturally reflected in the sound, according to Pro-Ject Audio Systems’ promise. The user can therefore experiment with the different sound characteristics.

All three are designed to be suitable for tonearms according to the SME standard with a 1/2 inch cartridge mounting device. The actual headshell is made from a single piece and is characterised by high rigidity and low mass, as well as a low-resonance design.

The azimuth can be adjusted using a screw on the side and a built-in finger lift makes handling easier in everyday use. The colour-coded cables, which are part of the scope of delivery, are again helpful when installing the pickup system, with conductors made of high-purity OFC copper being used.

Pro-Ject Headshell PRO Black and Pro-Ject Headshell PRO Carbon

The three latest headshell solutions from Pro-Ject Audio Systems are of course also very similar, especially the two models Pro-Ject Headshell PRO Black and Pro-Ject Headshell PRO Carbon.

Once again, these are headshells suitable for SME standard tonearms with 1/2 inch cartridge mounting, whereby the material used here is black anodised aluminium or carbon. Here we rely on a design that consists of several bolted components, but is nevertheless characterised by low resonance, high rigidity and low mass.

The finger lift is also screwed onto the top and, of course, colour-coded cables made of OFC copper are used.

The azimuth can be adjusted in the tried and tested manner using an adjustment screw on the side, which is of course included for the sake of completeness.

Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Premium

The new Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Premium is designed as a solution for 1/2 inch cartridge mounting in accordance with the SME standard and is made from a single piece of aluminium with a high-gloss polished surface. According to the manufacturer, it is a low-resonance design that achieves high rigidity with minimum mass and in which the so-called finger lift is firmly connected to the headshell.

The colour-coded cables are made of pure silver for easy mounting of a pickup system, as Pro-Ject Audio Systems emphasises.

Prices and availability

The new headshells from Pro-Ject Audio Systems should all be available from specialist retailers within the next few days. The exact prices for the individual solutions can be found in the table at the end of this article.

Getting to the point

Of course, the new headshell systems that Pro-Ject Audio Systems is now launching on the market are primarily recommended as an extension or upgrade for the new Pro-Ject EVO Tonearm Series and Pro-Ject EVO Premium Tonearm Series cartridge systems presented by the company in September 2023, but thanks to their SME-compatible mounting system, the new headshells can also be used with a wide variety of other tonearm systems.

PricePro-Ject Headshell PRO Black € 79,-
Pro-Ject Headshell PRO Carbon € 99,-
Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Aluminium € 99,-
Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Oak € 129,-
Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Carbon € 149,-
Pro-Ject Signature Headshell Premium € 199,-
ManufacturerPro-Ject Audio Systems a division of Audio Tuning Vertriebs GmbH
Distribution AustriaAudio Tuning Vertriebs GmbH
Distribution GermanyAudio Trade Hi-Fi Vertriebsgesellschaft mbH
Distribution SwitzerlandLakeside Audio
More about this manufacturer at HiFi BLOG
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Michael Holzinger

Michael Holzinger, founder and editor-in-chief of HiFi BLOG and sempre-audio.at, has been working for years as a journalist in the fields of IT, photography, telecommunications and consumer electronics.

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