How to choose a vinyl player

When choosing a vinyl player, you should pay attention to its electromechanical characteristics and device.

choose a vinyl player

How to choose a vinyl player: basic criteria

The main criteria for choosing a vinyl player:

  1. The presence of a phono stage;

  2. The presence of an amplifier;

  3. The weight of the faceplate or the player itself;

  4. Presence of needle pressure adjustment;

  5. Cartridge type;

  6. Type of sharpening needles;

  7. Type of drive.

  8. The manufacturer is also important.

Main selection criteria

The principle of the vinyl player

To highlight the most important technical characteristics you need to understand the principle of the vinyl player.

  1. A vinyl record is a storage medium on which waves are applied in the form of surface irregularities – trajectories acoustic vibrations. The tracks are arranged in a spiral shape from center to the edge;

  2. The pickup needle (tonearm) moves along the tracks, rising and sinking down on these bumps;

  3. The movements of the needle are transmitted to the electromechanical converter, where they turn into current oscillations;

  4. Modulated current in an electromechanical converter enters the phono stage, where it is converted to “pleasant for hearing, “because on the record the music is recorded on purpose distorted form (just for recording);

  5. The signal converted to the phono stage goes to amplifier;

  6. From the amplifier, the signal enters the connected speakers.

Thus, the most important characteristics are clear: needle geometry, the presence of a phono stage, an amplifier, as well as a number other electromechanical parameters.

The presence of a phono stage

Vinyl players can be equipped with built-in phono stage, and delivered without it. First option preferable for beginner music lovers, as it simplifies work with the player. However, for the highest quality and – most importantly – customizable sound preference recommended choose players without a built-in phono stage, and this buy separately.

Amplifier availability

Out-of-the-box vinyl players have built-in phono stage and amplifier. This, again, simplifies use of the player, however, limits the ability to configure sound.

But if you want maximum customization of sound, then It is recommended to choose players without a phono stage and amplifier.

Weight of faceplate or player itself

When rotating the faceplate (moving player element, which holds the vinyl record) can vibrate, which negatively affects the quality of reproduced music, including including introducing distortion.

To avoid sound distortion due to vibration, manufacturers deliberately weight the faceplate. As a consequence, than she heavier, the more “even” the music will be. Optimal weight player in general – from 10 kg. The mass of the faceplate itself in this case is from 7 kg.

Needle pressure adjustment available

The sound quality and vinyl carrier wear rate. Therefore, it is desirable that The player was equipped with this feature. Especially if you plan listen to songs with a lot of instruments used or a dense soundstage.

However, needle pressure turntables are quite expensive.

Cartridge type

The cartridge is a structural element of the pickup. Exactly at mute and placed the needle. There are two types of cartridges – 1/2 inch and standard T4P.

1/2 inch cartridge for maximum performance sound customization. However, it is difficult to configure – required setting the height of the needle, balancing the tonearm, other operations. T4P cartridges are significantly easier to use, they do not require tonear balancing, easy to attach – but at the same time limit the ability to customize the sound.

Players with replaceable cartridges are recommended.

Type of sharpening needles

The type of sharpening the needle does not particularly affect the sound quality, but music lovers prefer oval-sharpened. But round sharpened cheaper.

type of drive

The drive in vinyl players can be direct, belt driven or roller. The first option will appeal to fans of scratching (DJ manual rotation of the plates). Belt drive provides the smoothest rotation, without unnecessary vibrations. Roller does not create sound distortion only in expensive players.

Top manufacturers

Among the manufacturers of vinyl players can highlight:

  1. Technics Legendary company, its products are still appreciated. audiophiles;

  2. Sherwood, Pro-Ject, Rega. Medium Player Manufacturers price category;

  3. Pioneer, Micro, JVC. Japanese manufacturers recommended yourself among music lovers.

  4. You can also highlight the company Sony and Denon.

In the following articles, our experts tell you how to choose radio and secrets of choosing a portable speaker.


Attention! This material is subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a buying guide.

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