The vinyl player or “turntable” has stood the test of time. Currently, lots of vinyl collectors showed gestures of kindness and charity to record stores who were hit with sizable losses caused by the coronavirus outbreak. This shows that even now, there are lots of people who would rather enjoy their music the analog way and support sources that provide them with their choice platters.
Vinyl is indeed here to stay, and there’s a great range of vinyl players today that enthusiasts can choose from. Thinking of buying one? Help yourself to these neat picks.
- Why invest in vinyl and a quality turntable?
Answer: For vinyl collectors, records are the way to go because it sounds better—when audio files are compressed as digital formats, plenty of data gets lost during the process. All the nuances that the tracks possess are preserved in vinyl formats. Digital tunes are great because it sounds streamlined and polished but according to record experts, tracks recorded in vinyl form have more authenticity because every gradation and tone of the audio file are sustained.
- Are speakers for vinyl players needed?
Answer: This will be based on the built-in speakers’ quality that the turntable comes with. Adding external speakers to your turntable set-up is actually a great move since this will enhance the sound quality of the record player. You have to guarantee though that the positioning of the speakers is separate from the location of the vinyl player so any vibration coming from the speakers will not disrupt the turntable. Also, look for external speakers that provide excellent dynamics and the best accuracy.
- When is the best time to change the record player’s stylus?
Answer: A general rule to follow when changing the turntable’s stylus is to replace the item following a thousand hours of play or every two years. In addition, if the stylus shows crooked or rough edges, or when you notice changes in the quality of sound, records skipping during use then it’s time to change the stylus.
Our Top Picks
Udreamer Vinyl Record Player
- Built-in stereo speakers
- Includes Bluetooth connectivity
- Has USB connectivity and RCA-lineout
- 3 listening speeds
The Udreamer Vinyl Record Player is a cool find that features three listening speeds (33-1/3, 45 and 78 RPM) and 3 record sizes (7-inch, 10-inch and 12-inch). The base of the unit features a spring and belt-driven design for great shock absorption and the best listening experience. This one is a mix of vintage and modern stylings as well—you have your record player and support for Bluetooth, USB and and RCA lineout.
Victrola Nostalgic Classic Wood 6-in-1 Entertainment Center
- Features 3 listening speeds
- Built-in Bluetooth
- Built-in cassette player, CD player and FM radio
- Includes speakers
The Victrola Nostalgic Classic Wood 6-in-1 Entertainment Center is a very sweet deal—it is indeed a streamlined entertainment center since it not only includes the requisite record player, it can also accommodate cassettes, compact disks, an FM radio and even Bluetooth support. It’s several machines in one. To make the experience more enjoyable though, you need to invest in quality speakers. Cassette tapes can’t be rewound but the CD player provides playback and stations on the FM radio sound clear and bright.
Audio-Technica AT-LP60X-BK Turntable
- High-fidelity vinyl audio
- Fully-automatic belt-driven turntable operation
- Features 2 speeds
- Anti-resonance aluminum platter
The Audio-Technica AT-LP60X-BK is easy as pie to operate and you can actually experience nice high-fidelity qualities on this model. This is a belt-driven option as well that presents two speeds; 33-1/3 and 45 RPM. To reduce vibration, it features an anti-resonance, die-cast aluminum platter. Resonance is also further reduced due to the upgraded tone arm base and head shell. For connectivity options, it includes an integrated phono pre-amplifier or line-level output. A nice choice if you want something that is mid-priced.
Wockoder Turntable Record Player
- Features 3 speeds
- SD and USB support
- Has 3.5mm jack line-in
- High-sensitivity cartridge
The Wockoder Turntable Record Player is another user-friendly vinyl player that has modern features included; it already comes with SD and USB support plus a 3.5mm jack line-in. high-definition sound quality is yours to enjoy through its full-range stereo speaker. You can also choose to make use of your choice headphones by way of the included headphone/earphone jack. Makes for a great gift to yourself, musically-inclined family or friends.
LP&No.1 Retro Record Player
The LP&No.1 Retro Record Player will be appreciated by both record collectors and MP3 enthusiasts thanks to its array of features. It features three speeds (33 1/3, 45 or 78 RPM) and can accommodate 3 sizes of vinyl (7-inch, 10-inch and 12-inch). Create mp3 tracks of your choice vinyl tunes by using its recording function, done thru the USB output port. This one is very easy on the eyes as well with its solid wood façade. The player has a protective dust cover and bespoke mat to minimize vibrations and prevent dust buildup.
Fluance RT85 Reference High Fidelity Record Player
- Purely analog performance
- Excellent musical precision
- High-density acrylic platter
- Better speed control
Record experts say a denser acrylic platter on turntables makes for steadier speed and vibration reduction. You can find this advantage on the Fluance RT85 Reference High Fidelity Record Player. The player provides excellent playback care of its elliptical 2M Blue cartridge—the set-up releases a well-defined, natural and rich sound which actually nails the reason why vinyl records are preferred by music purists. Expect nothing but the wonders of the analog sound in this model.
The best way to take pleasure in your favorite platters is through a satisfactory vinyl player set-up. All of the choices presented in this list has features that record collectors might be interested in. In addition, most of the choices also cater to modern features like USB and Bluetooth support. Select the one that gives the best value for your money and answers what you need in a turntable.