Both the Silver3 and Gold3 use a four piece OTL cantilever with a Grado specific elliptical diamond stylus mounted on a brass bushing. With the Silver3 and Gold3, a machined turned generator is used to achieve a lower distortion and greater transparency. The Gold3 are hand selected from Silver3 production runs which meet higher test specifications. Approximately 5% of the run usually exhibits these specs and become a Gold3.
Grado’s OTL, or optimized transmission line, technology provides an ideal transfer of signal from the surface of the LP to the generator of the system.
This technology rejects unwanted resonances and lowers distortion preserving the fundamental and harmonic frequencies of the music. This also helps keep noise generated by the motor system in the cartridge to a minimum.
Grado’s OTL stylus/cantilever design makes records sound quieter, improves the height, width, and depth of the soundstage, and present more detail than previously obtainable.
The Silver3 & Gold3 are all hand assembled by our team in Brooklyn, with some builders having over 25 years of experience. With the recent development of the highly received Lineage Series of cartridges, we were able to have a trickle down of technology and bring a new technique to the Silver3 & Gold3. This updated series of cartridges offers excellent tonal balance, dynamics, and realism, for a most rewarding reproduction of vocals and instruments. Our coil winding techniques, using ultra high purity copper wire which were honed during the development of the Lineage Series, have let the electrical circuits achieve unison between the four coils in each phono cartridge. This allows for a precise balance between channels and accurate stereo imaging.
As in all Grado phono cartridges the Silver3 & Gold3 are powered by a twin magnet system that optimizes the balance between stereo channels. All internal magnetic circuit parts are held to extremely high tolerances creating the desired stereo imaging. Grado’s patented Flux-Bridger design allows the Silver3 & Gold3 to have one of the lowest effective moving mass generating systems while creating an excellent balance throughout the full frequency range.
The development of the Epoch in the Lineage Series gave us an in-depth experience with using an outer housing as a damping device. This led to the creation of a process which de-stresses the chassis and dissipates unwanted energy & resonant frequencies, allowing the desired signal to travel freely.
I've always found the sound of cartridges other than moving coils to be unrefined by comparison; in particular, the top end of high output designs never quite matches coils for speed, clarity and grace. The Prestige Gold, however, seemed to be sweeter than most. It was lively and detailed but never edgy on vocal sibilants, and didn't over-emphasis leading edges on acoustic guitar. Gold? Smooth? Mellow Yellow!