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DS Audio DS 003 system (includes cartridge and phono stage)

Regular price $5,000.00 USD
Regular price $6,000.00 USD Sale price $5,000.00 USD
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Sale- Now $5000 regularly $6000
Introducing the DS Audio DS 003 Optical Cartridge System
DS Audio elevates the sound of vinyl playback with their latest optical cartridge set. This pure analog playback system implements the new “dual-mono” generator from their flagship Grand Master cartridge, resulting in enhanced clarity, improved imaging, and greater musical involvement.  
Incredibly low effective mass -
With the new dual-mono optical generator, the shading plate is redesigned for optimal position and agility. Using 99.9% beryllium instead of aluminum found in previous designs, the weight is significantly reduced by 50%. This is less than 1/10th of the mass found in the moving coil of a typical MC cartridge. This incredibly low effective mass promotes even greater trackability and reduced resonance, further improving the advantages of DS Audio optical cartridges.
Line contact stylus, ultra-rigid body design, and improved internal wiring-
The DS 003 cartridge features a line contact diamond stylus with an aluminum cantilever. The cartridge body is machined of A5052 aluminum and the body structure is designed for maximum rigidity. The DS 003 internal wiring is 1.6 times thicker than in the second-generation optical cartridges, reducing resistance for improved signal flow.
An improved equalizer for the DS 003 cartridge -
New circuitry and casework for the 003 equalizers create the perfect mate for the 003 cartridges. Echoing the industrial design of the Grand Master eq, the 003 eq’s sculptural styling reflects the 3rd generation from DS Audio. Discrete circuitry with critical signal paths wired point-to-point assures that the 3rd generation 003 optical cartridge generator performs to its optimal level.

Compared to the DS 002 equalizer, the thickness of the circuit board has been increased from 1.6 mm to 2.0 mm for greater vibration control. For enhanced conductivity, the thickness of the copper foil on these new circuit boards has been increased from 35 μ to 70 μ and they are populated with new film capacitors. The DS 003 equalizer provides four different roll-off curves for the low-frequency range, allowing you to optimize bass response to best match your system and listening room.
DS Audio’s technology allows unmatched performance -
The DS 003 optical phono cartridge brings the 3rd generation of optical cartridge sound, as found in the Grand Master cartridge, to a new level of performance and price.
The DS 003 cartridge and 003 phono stage are sold as a set and are a perfectly matched pair. They are compatible with all DS Audio optical cartridges and equalizers providing many choices and upgrades for the ultimate in pure analog vinyl enjoyment.

Independent LED and photo-detector arrangement for the left and right channels

The new DS003 optical cartridge system has been optimized, by implementing an independent LED and photo-detector arrangement for the left and right channels. As a result the cartridge output voltage has greatly increased from 40mV to 70mV. The DS003 cartridge offers a greatly improved S/N ratio when compared to its stable mates, resulting in an even lower noise floor and far greater musical clarity.

Weight of shading plate reduced by more than 50%

The implementation of independent left and right channel LED’ s allows for the positioning of the optical system to be optimized as well as necessitating the use of a new shading plate that has been significantly reduced in size compared to our earlier designs. In addition to this reduction in size, the material used to produce the shading plate has changed from aluminium (as used in the second generation cartridges) to 99.9% pure beryllium.

Aluminum cantilever & Aluminum body

The DS003 cartridge features the combination of an aluminum cantilever with a line contact stylus. The cartridge body is made by aluminum and the structure has been designed in such a way as to promote maximum rigidity. In addition to these features, the DS003 utilizes internal wiring 1.6 times thicker than used in the second generation cartridges in order to reduce impedance.

Changed the thickness of the circuit board and the thickness of the copper foil.

Compared to the DS002 equalizer, the thickness of the circuit board has been changed from 1.6 mm to 2.0 mm, and the thickness of the copper foil has been changed from 35µ to 70µ.In addition, the DS003 equalizer allows you to select the cutoff frequency for the low frequency range from four types, allowing you to select an output that better matches your system.

Hand-made in Japan circuit board

Every component part used in our products is tested and evaluated by our expert Japanese technicians.
In addition to using a specially printed circuit board, twist-connection of the component legs is further evidence of DS Audio’ s excellent attention to detail.
Each and every product is hand-made and quality assured by our skilled engineers.


Output 70mV (1kHz) (at Cartridge output)
Channel Separation 27dB or greater
Stylus Pressure 2.0- 2.2 grams (2.1 grams is recommended)
Cantilever Aluminum
Stylus Line Contact
Weight 7.7g
Body Material Aluminum
Warranty 1 year