How to Pick the Right Turntable for Your Needs?

Vinyl and turntable may not be the kind of things that you would normally see in everyone’s household nowadays. However, it doesn’t mean that these things are now nonexistent and simply part of history. These two remain alive as the music industry continues to release new records on vinyl on limited editions.

Despite the evolution of music records from the phonograph to vinyl, tape, CD, MP3, and streams, turntables never lost its charm. Turntables are here to stay as audiophiles continue to enjoy the quality of sound they produce. Of course, turntables have evolved as well over the years so we’re here to help you pick the right one. Here are some things that you need to consider when shopping for a turntable that fits your needs:

  •         Know the basics of turntables.

Unless you’re already an expert when it comes to turntables then you shouldn’t skip this part. It’s easier to shop if you already know what you’re looking for before hitting the stores. Of course, you should also know its parts and their functions that include the following:

o   stroke dots

o   45-RPM adaptor

o   platter

o   turntable base

o   power switch

o   start/stop button

o   speed select buttons

o   slipmat

o   center spindle

o   belt drive or direct drive

o   stylus illuminator

o   stylus

o   cartridge

o   headshell

o   pitch control

o   counterweight

o   anti-skate control

o   cue lever

o   arm rest

o   tone arm

o   phone output

o   power cable ground wire

As a smart buyer, you should at least get some idea of what you are getting yourself into. Knowing the basic things about a turntable can also help you get some good deals to invest in.If you need an expert curated list for different budgets,you can check Newswatchngr’s picks.

  • List down the things you need in a turntable.

After going through the basics, it’s time to ask yourselves a question. What are the things that you need when you buy a turntable? It’s also worth considering how you want to use it so you can focus on its major parts and functions. If you are a DJ who needs to use this regularly, you might want to ensure that there’s a direct-drive. You may want to check it for external drive connections as well to connect computers or mixers.

Are you a collector who just wants to buy and put it on display? If yes, then you can save a lot of headaches since you can focus on its outer looks only. But if you’re also an audiophile, you better prepare your wallet to spend more for a quality sound. But since every buyer has his/her taste and needs, some may think twice about getting a brand new or second-hand. Besides, there are lots of stores out there that sell second-hand models that are still in good condition.

Some buyers seek these products before investing in a brand new turntable. Regardless, you should focus on the features that address your needs. Bluetooth is one of the features that you can look for in modern versions that connect to its speakers.

  • Set your budget.

Once you’ve determined everything you need, the next thing to do is check your budget. Whether money is an issue or not, it’s always best to be practical by setting your budget. Besides, determining the things you need is not enough if you are serious about getting the right turntable. So, set a flexible amount where your budget and your needs could meet.

Are you looking for antique turntables that still create quality sound or you’re into modern models with modern features? Low-budget turntables may range from $100-$200 while mid-range models may range $300-$500 which combines better value and performance. Lastly, high-end models that have more features, greater sound quality, unique designs, and superb performance may cost $500 and above.

  • Choose between manual or automatic.

Manual operated turntables are those that you have to lift their tone arm and place it on the record. This is perfect if you want to feel that nostalgia effect whenever you’re placing classic records just like the old times. There are also those automatic models that you can turn on in one click before leaving it playing in the background. It’s also the best partner that you can find if you’re scared of scratching your vinyl.

  • Consider the system.

Buying a turntable means investing in a stereo system as well unless it’s just another of your expensive displays. There are also affordable models with built-in speaker devices that are nice to bring when you’re traveling. However, we won’t recommend that for regular home use since they’re not that durable and impressive in performance. You may consider getting an amplifier too so you can have a solid sound system that is worth your investment.

  • Check its weight.

Generally, a heavy turntable is a must to reduce its vibration which can affect its cartridge and performance. This also applies in shelf/furniture where you plan to place it to ensure its stability. Thus, avoid lightweight turntables which can be unstable to avoid ruining its performance.

  •  Save some space in your place.

The last thing you’d want is to be stuck with a turntable that you can’t even fit in your house/room. The sizes of turntables vary since some are small enough to fit in small spaces while others eat too much space. Before you buy one, be sure to have enough space where it can fit and remain safe. The vinyl alone already takes up so much space let alone if you add the sound systems.

  • How to set it up?

Not all turntable models come out of the box without requiring assembly or set up. Other models, especially the older ones usually require assembly which can be a pain if you’re not that tech-savvy. Thus, the installations and setups can be challenging so be sure to ask whether it still requires assembly or not.


There you have it, all the major points when it comes to picking the right turntable according to your needs. Whether it is your first time or not to buy one, we hope that these tips can help you. Regardless if you want to buy at brick and mortar stores or in online shops, these things will come in handy. These tips will not only help you narrow down your search but also help you save time and money. Therefore, you will not only get the turntable you need but also avoid wasting time on poor products.

About RJ Frometa

Head Honcho, Editor in Chief and writer here on VENTS. I don't like walking on the beach, but I love playing the guitar and geeking out about music. I am also a movie maniac and 6 hours sleeper.

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