Collections: VAN DEN HUL Cartridges

Type: Turntable

Our top model custom handbuilt phono cartridge, featuring matched crystal copper coils and 0.22 or 0.30mV/channel output. A version with matched crystal gold coils and 0.38 mV/channel output is also available.

As a result of phono cartridge builder A.J. van den Hul’s continuous research into improving his phono cartridge designs The COLIBRI has seen the light of day.

The COLIBRI is the improved successor to our GRASSHOPPER “BEAUTY” series of phono cartridges where many building components have been removed in a highly successful quest to return to the plain essence of phono transduction.

The result is an unbelievably straightforward sounding “clean and open” design, in all its aspects bearing much resemblance to the “Colibri” named tropical bird’s swiftness, elegance and beauty; Hence the cartridge’s name.

Compared to our GRASSHOPPER “BEAUTY” series the following differences stand out:

  • By minimizing and adapting the cartridge’s total magnetic circuit the related distortion and (Barkhausen) noise have undergone a considerable decrease. This opens up many subtle sound details that never have been heard before; Especially the decay of instrument sounds now stands out much more clearly in the music’s totality.
  • Due to the minimization of the cartridge’s total magnetic circuit the cartridge’s mass has been reduced. Together with the possibility to tune the cartridge’s static compliance on special customer demand it is now possible to use very light tonearms whilst maintaining a very good tracking ability.
  • By removing the frontpole is has been possible to apply an even shorter cantilever; This further improves the groove-modulation-transduction’s directness and accuracy.
  • Due to the minimal magnetic design the output voltage has slightly reduced.

The COLIBRI is available in three main versions:

XC Version: (X = cross shaped modulator, C = matched crystal Copper wire coils)

  • Low output all-round model
  • Output voltage: 0.22 mV/channel
  • Types available: XCP and XCM (P and M type suffix see *4)

XC-HO Version: (X = cross shaped modulator, C = matched crystal Copper wire coils, HO = High Output)

  • High output, most suitable for jazz music
  • Output voltage: 0.30mV/channel
  • Types available: XCP-HO and XCM-HO (P and M type suffix see *4)

XG Version: (X = cross shaped modulator, G = matched crystal Gold wire coils)

  • Medium output, most suitable for classical music
  • Output voltage: 0.38 mV/channel
  • Types available: XGP and XGM (P and M type suffix see *4)

Special customer demands/specifications:
Thanks to the many variations in materials available, it is always possible to build a unit to match the personal demands of the customer. With these personalized cartridges the wooden container can mention the name of the customer it has been specially built for. This option is exclusively available for The CANARY, The GRASSHOPPER III series, The GRASSHOPPER IV, The GRASSHOPPER “BEAUTY”, The CONDOR and The COLIBRI versions.

The customer demands/specifications that can be taken into account when building a personalized cartridge for instance are:
The tone-arm used, the preamp and load impedance used, a particular brand of records to be played, the type of music generally played (jazz being more dynamic and classical more spacious and detailed) and other personal/sound preferences.

Frequency response: see attached image in the sidebar on your right

Production time:
The production time for a COLIBRI cartridge after ordering is about two weeks. Please call your authorized distributor for delivery time.


Special Edition COLIBRI XGA now available with Titanium & Amber Body & Gold Coils.


version a) XCP & XCM
c) XGP & XGM
stylus replacement see (*1)
stylus shape VDH - IS
stylus radii 2 x 85 Micron
frequency range 5 - 65.000 Hz
tracking force 13.5 - 15 mN
see (*3)
static compliance 35 Micron/mN
see (*3)
tracking ability 70 Micron
output voltage

a) 0.22 mV RMS
b) 0.30 mV RMS
c) 0.38 mV RMS

channel unbalance < 0.5 dB
channel separation

> 35 / > 30 dB

stylus tip mass 0.24 Milligram
system weight see (*4)
vertical tracking angle 22 Degrees
load capacitance see (*2)
load impedance

a) 500 - 1000 Ohm
b) 500 - 1000 Ohm
c) 500 - 1000 Ohm

eff tone arm mass see (*3) + (*4) + (*5)
moving coil resistance

a) 21 Ohm +/- 10%
b) 96 Ohm +/- 10%
c) 36 Ohm +/- 10%

extra info

(*1): Stylus replacement and other services available on request.

(*2): Non critical.

(*3): Versions optimized for lower tracking forces (allowing very light arms) can be built on special request. These have a higher static compliance.

(*4): P and M type suffix:
Each of the three above mentioned main versions of The COLIBRI are available with either:

  • A regular carbon-nylon plastic body. Total cartridge weight is 6 gram. Suitable for arms with an effective tone arm mass of 8 gram to 14 gram. The plastic bodied version carries the -P suffix in its name.
  • A metal body. Total cartridge weight is 7 gram. Suitable for arms with an effective tone arm mass of 10 gram to 14 gram. The metal bodied version carries the -M suffix in its name.

(*5): The cartridge has been optimized regarding an EFFECTIVE tone arm mass of 11 - 12 gram. Heavier arms CAN produce tracking and resonance problems and arms with an effective mass exceeding 16 gram WILL CERTAINLY! Please note that an extremely short cantilever and a high tracking ability and heavy arms DUE TO PHYSICS will never yield a happy marriage.

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