Vintage Record Player: What You Need to Know When Buying One


record player

The vinyl record player is back in an epic way. Even though the sales of physical music media and digital downloads have significantly declined, vinyl sales seem to be marking successful growth. If you want to collect vinyl as a hobby, it is imperative that you invest in a quality record player also popularly referred to as a ‘turntable’. Since there is an almost endless number of product options to choose from and prices vary, here are some important aspects you might want to consider when shopping for the ideal record player.

1. Are The Player Parts Upgradeable?

How upgradeable your system will be is generally determined by price bracket. It is worth noting that the entry-level record players are ready to use out-of-the-box. The higher-end models, on the other hand, are expandable, meaning you can attach additional components to get the most out of them.

Some few parts can be changed and these include the following:

Platter – A heavier platter significantly reduces vibration

Stylus – Responsible for detail and accuracy in sound reproduction. Should ideally be replaced every one-thousand hours.

Tonearm – Has a major impact on the consistency and accuracy of record rotation.

Virtually every other part or component is upgradeable on record players, especially if you would rather go for newer or better.

2. Spend a little more and get the best

Most of the budget record players are retro-styled in plastic casing and have built-in speakers. Therefore, if you wish to start your hobby, then this is worth a try. However, if you’re looking for something richer and warmer in sound that vinyl ardent fans eulogize, then you should expect to spend slightly more. Note that pushing up your budget allows you to enjoy noticeable improvements. Even so, at this point, it gets a little complicated.

As you opt for the mid-range options and beyond, you’re bound to notice that the price of the record players grows exponentially. David Richard from Top Record Players says that if you are just starting to put together a retro-style turntable system, you’ll need to buy other components separately, such as an amp and speakers. You suddenly need to budget for more than the record player and when you go high end, there is a need to configure the system yourself to get the best possible sound out of it. Therefore, do not hesitate to pay a premium for a decent player.

3. Digitize Analog Records

You also need to determine whether you prefer a completely analog player with a separate music collection in digital format or you want your turntable to have a built-in port for plugging in your USB media and digitize your analog records. With an in-built USB port, you get the opportunity to record music playback from vinyl to MP3 format in real-time with the crackles and everything.

Experts say now is a good time to invest in vinyl, as most of the latest music albums are released in this format as well, and you can find plenty of classics if you know where to look. It is now easy to understand why the retro-style record players are suddenly becoming popular. If you want to be sure you’re getting the best, then you can use the aforementioned tips as a guide.


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