Three Things to Look for in a Great Record Player

Sometimes, only vinyl hits the spot.

Vintage record player
Get into the groove.Pixabay

The digital ease of streaming is a convenient way to listen to a huge variety of music. However, it can also be a lovely, celebratory thing to play a single record. That does, of course, require a turntable.

Audio-Technica Direct-Drive Turntable (Analog & USB), Silver, Fully Manual, Hi-Fi, 3 Speed, Convert Vinyl to Digital, Anti-Skate Control, Variable Pitch Control

Computer Connectivity

Connect your PC or Mac and upload your records to digital files.Audio-Technica

There are a wide variety of turntable types out there. If you aim to use vinyl as one of your primary ways to listen to music, you’ll want a proper, semi-traditional turntable. That means a turntable with a direct drive motor, that you will plug into a receiver, which will in turn be fed to passive speakers. Modern turntables have tons of extra features, but the basics haven’t changed all that much in decades.

Victrola Navigator 8-In-1 Classic Bluetooth Record Player with USB Encoding and 3-Speed Turntable

Old-Timey Charm

This turntable has it all, including its own speakers.Victrola

You could also opt for an all-in-one system, with a turntable, amplifier and speakers all in one unit. These were really popular in the 1950s, and many models today use that sort of Victorian wooden design language. But today, they’ll include other features, like far smaller and superior speakers, headphone jacks and even Bluetooth.

Byron Statics Bluetooth Speakers 5.0 Record Player Audio Turntables Vinyl Player Suitcase 3-Speed Wireless 2 Built-in Stereo Speakers RCA Output Headphone 3.5 Jack Line in Needle

Made to Travel

Suitcase style device that weighs a little more than a small laptop.Byron Statics

You could also opt for a portable turntable. These tend to be highly simplified, tiny and will fold up into a sort of briefcase. If you want to bring your records over to a party—maybe even to DJ—a portable is a good option. Another ideal use might be somebody who’s just getting into vinyl for the first time: many portable turntables are inexpensive and easy to use.