“The game changer”

I think it could be the sixth biggest game-changer in cartridges in three decades. The other five? its older siblings.

                                                                                                                                                    HiFi News 2019, Ken Kessler


Product photo


Customer reviews(all products)

byM(Japan) on
DS-E1 set

DS-E1 Happy days with music I used to listen to it with DENON's station blur, so I used many types of MC, including the genuine DL-103. Since the DN-308F is equipped with an equalizer amplifier, there was no need to prepare an equalizer amplifier or preamplifier. MC listening with the equalizer... More

byDr. Albert Uy on
DS Audio Grand Master Set & ION-001 Vinyl Ionizer

DS Audio Grand Master Set & ION-001 Vinyl Ionizer Day 1 after installation of the DS Audio Grand Master (GM) cartridge on the Sikora tonearm and readjusting of SGR Model V racks to accommodate the heavy GM Phono Equalizer with separate power supply: Like my previous DS Audio Master 1, ... More

by土屋洋(Japan) on
DS-W2 set

I bought the DS-W2 two years ago. I've used many MC cartridges so far, but the W2 sounds quite different from those MC cartridges. It is a natural and realistic sound without coloring. The resolution is high, and it reproduces precisely and realistically from low to high frequencies, but the W2 does... More

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Product catalog

DS-E1 catalog
DS Audio catalog2019 (all products 3.4M)

DS-E1 review

DS-E1 Hi Fi News review by Ken Kessler

“The game changer”
“I think it could be the sixth biggest game-changer in cartridges in three decades. The other five? its older siblings.”

“Never – except maybe with the DS-W1 – have I heard such a three-dimensional sound image when listening to two-channel systems”

“He is stunned that such an inexpensive system can play so well. It even overshadows its own, sometimes much more expensive, cartridge pickups”
“The DS Audio DS-E1 is so convincing in every respect that not only he but also another acquaintance bought this cartridge through their respective dealers”

DS Audio’s most valuable optical analog cartridge

“The DS-E1 has an extremely clean music background, which can make the layering of music more open, medium and high The gorgeous colors and the wide sound field are all DS-E1 charms. Moreover, this price is not just a phono, but even a dedicated amp.”
“We buy it without thinking over because the sound is so brilliant and the price is so kindly !”

Review: DS Audio E1 Optical Cartridge System, Part 2

“Here’s where this cartridge system beats the competition I’ve heard:

None of the competition has that “open reel” quality of sound
None have a dead quiet background
None have the absence of haze you have grown accustomed to
None disassociate surface noise from the music better

I have not had a better listening experience with any other cartridge. It does everything you need a cartridge to do to get you closer to the music. When the “film” you have been listening through for all of these years is removed, you get the closest thing I have heard to an open reel.
At $2,750.00 for the cartridge AND the DS Audio Phono Stage/Equalizer, I simply cannot think of anything that is close. It is my new Audio Waypoint and a game-changer for me personally.”

DS-E1 review by Tone audio

“It would be easy to call the DS Audio E1 optical cartridge and equalizer a benchmark at the $3k price point. I think that it’s easily a benchmark at twice, maybe even three times that price.”

DS-E1 review by Taiwan magazine(Chinese language)

“DS Audio’s latest optical cartridge/phono-stage combo, the DS-E1, while priced at the low end in the lineup, achieves a performance level well beyond expectation. It retains most of the key sonic signatures of the top-end model with just slightly lower resolution and dynamic punch. In terms of background noise level, transient speed, and tonal accuracy, the DS-E1 is obviously ahead of conventional transducers at the similar or much higher price bracket. The clean, accurate and harmonic-rich reproduction of well-recorded piano music will quickly dispel any doubt the DS-E1 being one of the best buys in the analog-gear market today. Strongly recommended.”

DS-E1 playing video


DS-E1 instruction manual

DS-E1 instruction manual

Product comparison chart

product specifications comparison sheet

Troubleshooting if the cartridge does not light


Download DS-E1 logos, photos, catalogs, etc.(Dropbox link)