Struggling with selecting a turntable that meets the highest standards of audio excellence?
In this blog, we detail the best high-end turntables for audiophiles and vinyl purists, from sophisticated models offering unparalleled sound quality to beautifully crafted turntables that are as much a piece of art as they are a music player, including a range of options that epitomize the pinnacle of vinyl playback technology.
With our rich 25 years of experience in the high-fidelity audio market, we’ve guided countless discerning listeners, from seasoned audiophiles to luxury collectors, to find a turntable that transcends ordinary listening experiences. Our extensive, hands-on testing has identified the elite of high-end turntables. These devices are not just tools for playing records; they are masterpieces of audio engineering, designed to extract every nuance and detail from vinyl records. We’ve scrutinized their audio performance, build quality, and technological innovation and found them extraordinary in delivering an audio experience that is both emotionally engaging and acoustically superior, making them ideal for anyone who seeks the very best in vinyl listening.
Best High-End Turntable Buying Guide
The market is filled with many different types of turntables today. The following guide will help you determine what type of turntable is right for you based on its intended purpose, while others are designed to provide an enjoyable listening experience.
Turntables: What Are They?
An arm and a platter are the two components of a turntable, which play records. The platter spins at 33 1/3 or 45 RPMs (revolutions per minute). The needle moves across the record as a result of this spinning motion. The arm holds the stylus to pick up the signal from the record, which it then transmits to the amplifier.
What are the types of turntables?
We’ll discuss the advantages and disadvantages of each type of turntable. Dynamic, belt-driven, cartridge-driven, and moving magnet designs are examples.
An all-direct drive turntable
Unlike other types of turntables, direct-drive models rely on a motor to turn the platter. These are more quiet and easier to maintain and repair than other models.
Belt-driven turntables use a belt to transfer power from the motor to the platter. Most people prefer belt-driven turntables because they don’t make as much noise as direct-drive units. They’re also relatively easy to operate.
These turntables use a tonearm to pick up the signal from a vinyl disc. Cartridges are generally considered to be the most accurate turntable style. They work by using a small stylus that picks up the sound waves from the record.
Moving Magnet Turntable
Moving magnet turntables use a permanent magnet to create the magnetic field that pulls the stylus across the record. These turntables tend to be quieter than their counterparts but they are not as accurate as cartridges.
Which type should you buy?
If you want a high-quality turntable that won’t break the bank, then consider purchasing a direct drive model. Moving magnet and cartridge turntables are usually more affordable options. Belt-driven turntables are great if you like to listen to music quietly.
Turntables: How To Choose The Right One
When choosing a new turntable, there are a number of factors that should be taken into consideration.
Making your selection should take into account the following factors:.
Consider Your Budget
You’ll probably spend anywhere from $100 to $1,000, depending on what features you choose. Keep your budget in mind from the beginning. Don’t buy something that you know you cannot afford.
The Size And Weight of Your Record Collection
If you only have one or two albums, then you may not need a large turntable. However, if you have hundreds of records, you’ll definitely want a larger unit.
Your Audio System
A turntable will typically fit into any stereo system. If you already have an amp, speakers, and subwoofer, then you shouldn’t have too many problems adding a turntable.
Your Musical Preferences
The styles of music available today are varied. Which one suits you best? Classical music? Jazz? Rock ‘n’ roll? Country? Blues? Hip-hop?
Vinyl Platters: What Is Their Material?
Vinyl is made from polyvinyl chloride (PVC). It comes in various thicknesses and can be found in clear, black, white, red, blue, green, yellow, orange, and pink. Some manufacturers offer colored vinyls for special occasions.
Vinyl Platters Have Different Levels Of Noise Reduction
Most vinyl platters come with a built-in noise-reduction feature. This means that the sound coming through the headphones will be clearer and less distorted. Some models even include a digital equalizer so you can adjust the volume level to suit your needs.
Is it worth buying an external power supply?
Some turntables require an external power supply. Turntables come with AC outlets for connecting portable players or CD changers.
Can I Use My Favorite Headphones With A Turntable?
Yes! Many turntables allow you to connect your favorite headphones via a 3.5mm jack. Most turntables also have a dedicated headphone output.
What about accessories?
Many turntables come with a variety of accessories, such as a carrying case, cleaning cloth, belt clip, and storage rack. You might also wish to purchase a separate stand or tonearm to help improve the performance of your turntable.
How Do You Clean Your Turntable?
Cleaning your turntable is easy. Simply wipe down the platter using a soft, lint-free cloth. Be careful not to use abrasive cleaners.
How much does it cost?
Depending on the brand and type of turntable, prices range between $50 and $500. Keep in mind that most turntables do not come with a warranty.
The Pioneer DJ PLX-1000 professional turntable has been designed for DJs who demand high-quality audio equipment at a reasonable price. The DJ PLX-1000 includes a built-in phono stage, which makes it ideal for connecting to a home hi-fi system.
This model is equipped with a 12″ x 8″ solid aluminum platter, which is made from heavy-duty materials. The platter is covered with a scratch-resistant coating, which prevents unwanted marks from appearing on the record.
A strong direct-drive motor that provides exceptional speed and accuracy drives the platter. The motor is enclosed within an anti-vibration housing, which ensures smooth operation.
The DJ PLX-1000 features a variable pitch control, which allows you to change the tone of the needle when playing different types of records. Depending on the type of record being played, the motor can also be adjusted.
The DJ PLX-1000 comes with a dust cover, which protects the underside of the platter. When closed, this cover helps prevent dirt and dust from accumulating on the platter.
The DJ PL X-1000 also includes a built-in automatic shut-off function, which automatically stops the motor after 30 minutes of non-use. This feature keeps your motor running while you are away from the turntable.
An internal rechargeable battery pack powers the DJ PL X-1000 and provides up to eight hours of continuous play. To charge the battery, simply remove the included USB cable and place the unit on top of any standard computer USB port.
The metal chassis protects the DJ PLX-1000 against damage. The front panel of the unit is constructed from durable plastic, which resists scratching.
The DJ PL-1000 weighs approximately 5 pounds (2.3 kg) and measures 13.8 inches long x 6.7 inches wide x 7.9 inches tall (34 cm x 18 cm x 20 cm).
- Variable Pitch Control
- Built-in Phono Stage
- Direct-drive motor
- Anti-vibration housing
- Dust Cover
- Rechargeable Battery Pack
- Includes USB Cable
- Dimensions: 13.8″L x 6.7″W x 7.9″H
- Weight: 2.3kg
If you want a reasonably priced turntable that will perform well, then the Pioneer DJ PLX-1000 is worth considering.
The Pro-ject Debut Carbon Audiophile turntable is one of the best budget turntables available today. This affordable turntable offers excellent performance and value.
The Debut Carbon uses a carbon fiber platter that is coated in a special finish to ensure superior playback. The platter is mounted on a precision bearing system, which reduces vibrations and noise.
The platter spins at speeds between 33 1/3 rpm and 45 rpm. Support for the platter is the stainless steel shaft that runs through the center. A rubber dampening ring surrounds the shaft to reduce vibration and noise during use.
The debut uses a belt-drive system that connects directly to the motor without using belts or gears. As a result, there are no moving parts to wear out over time.
A high-quality DC motor that runs smoothly and quietly powers the Debut. For most applications, it should be more than enough to deliver 3.5 watts at maximum output.
The Debut is equipped with a built-in phono stage, which lets you connect a cartridge directly to the turntable. The phono stage works with cartridges ranging from 4mm to 8mm in diameter.
The debut can handle both LP and CD recordings as well as digital media such as MP3s and CDs.
This model features a heavy-duty wooden base, which provides stability and durability. The base is covered in black leather, which makes it easy to clean.
A dust cover protects the tonearm when not in use.
This model comes with a carrying case, which allows you to transport the debut easily.
The debut weighs about 11 lbs (4.9 kg) and measures 17.1 inches long x 10.6 inches wide x 9.5 inches tall (43cm x 26cm x 24cm).
It includes a carrying bag and a manual.
- Carbon Fiber Platter
- Stainless Steel Shaft
- Belt-Driven System
- Variable Speed Control
- Built-In Phono Stage
- Includes Dust Cover
- Dimensions: 17.1″L x 10.6″W x 9.5″H
- Weight: 4.9kg
For those looking for a good turntable for under $500, this is a great choice.
The Audio-Technica AT- LP 120 X USB-BK is a direct drive turntable that delivers exceptional sound quality. The AT-LP120X USB-BK is equipped with a lightweight aluminum chassis, which makes it easy to move around. There’s no need to worry about scratches and fingerprints on the platter since it’s made of acrylic glass. It also ensures that the vinyl records remain flat when placed on top of the platter.
The platter rotates at speeds between 33 1 / 3 rpm and 45 rpm. The platter rests on a solid metal support, which prevents unwanted movement. A variable speed control that adapts automatically based on the music playing controls the platter’s speed.
The AT-LP120X USB-Bk is powered by a high-power Class D amplifier, which produces a total output of 2 watts. This means that the unit will provide plenty of power for most home audio systems. The AT-120X USB-B K is equipped with a built-in phono preamp, which lets you connect a standard cartridge directly to the turn-detecting device.
This model supports cartridges ranging from 4 mm to 8 mm in diameter. In addition to its carrying case, the AT-120X USB-BK is lightweight and can be taken anywhere.
The AT-122X USB-BK weighs about 12 pounds (5.4 kg) and measures 18.7 inches long x 13.2 inches wide x 7.8 inches tall (47 cm x 34 cm x 20 cm). It includes a carry bag and a manual.
- Aluminum Chassis
- Acrylic Glass Platter
- Solid Metal Support
- Variable Speed Control
- Built-in Phono Preamp
- Includes Carry Bag
- Dimensions: 18.7″ L x 13.2″ W x 7.8″ H
- Weight: 5.4kg
If you’re looking for a turntable that offers excellent sound quality and is affordable, then look no further than the Audio-Technica AT – 122X USB-BK.
The Crosley C62B- WA is a belt-drive turntable that has been designed to deliver high performance while keeping your wallet happy.
The C62B-WA features a stainless steel shaft which provides durability and stability. A heavy duty motor and bearing system ensure smooth rotation of the platter. This allows you to enjoy all types of music without any skipping or skipping. The platter sits on a sturdy base which helps prevent vibrations. The platter spins at speeds between 33 1/3 rpms and 45 rpms.
An integrated headphone jack lets you listen to your favorite tunes privately. You can use the included speakers to listen to your music in private or connect them to another speaker system. An internal rechargeable battery powers the Crosley C 62B-WA for up to six hours. The provided AC adapter can be used to charge the battery.
The Crosley comes with a carrying case and a manual. The Crosley weighs about 14 pounds (6.3 kg) and measures 19.1 inches long x 10.9 inches wide x 9.2 inches tall (49 cm x 27 cm x 24 cm).
It includes an instruction booklet, a carrying case, a remote control, a cleaning cloth, and a pair of headphones.
- Stainless Steel Shaft
- Integrated Headphone Jack
- Battery Powered
- Internal Rechargeable Battery
- AC Adapter Included
The Crosley C-62B-WA is a great choice if you want a turntable that delivers good sound quality and is easy to set up.
The Denon DP-300F fully automatic analog turntable is ideal for those who are looking for a simple way to enjoy their vinyl collection. The DP-300F uses a direct drive motor to spin the record at speeds between 33 1 / 3 rpm and 45 rpm. This ensures that there are no skipped records when playing your favorite songs. The platter is made from aluminum alloy and has an anti-skate coating. The platter also has a built-in phono equalizer so you can adjust the volume level of each frequency. The Denon DP 300F is equipped with a built-in amplifier and preamplifier. These components provide strong amplification and allow you to hear every detail in your recordings. The Denon comes with a carry bag, a power cord, and a manual.
It weighs about 12 pounds (5.4 kg) and measures 16.7 inches long x 11.8 inches wide x 7.8 inches tall (42 cm x 30 cm x 20 cm).
It includes a carrying case, a power cord, a manual, and a pair of earphones.
- Direct-drive motor.
- Anti-Skate Coating.
- Built-in amplifier and preamp.
- Built-in phono equalization.
- Carrying Case.
- Power Cord.
The Denon DP-300F is a good choice if you want a budget-friendly, fully automatic turntable.
FAQs on High-End Turntables
Thank you for reading this article about turntables. I hope it helped you find it helpful. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to ask me.