Should I Buy A Turntable? A Comprehensive Guide To Help You Decide

Music has always been an integral part of our lives, and with the advent of technology, it has become easier than ever to access our favorite tunes. However, there is something special about the physicality of music that cannot be replicated by digital formats.

This is where turntables come in.

Despite the convenience of streaming platforms and digital music formats, turntables have made a comeback in recent years, with vinyl sales reaching their highest annual number in 26 years. But is it worth investing in a turntable?

In this article, we will explore the pros and cons of owning a turntable and help you decide whether it’s the right choice for you. So sit back, relax, and let’s dive into the world of turntables.

Should I Buy A Turntable

If you’re a music lover, you may be wondering whether investing in a turntable is worth it. The answer is yes, and here’s why.

Firstly, using a turntable allows you to experience music in a completely different way. From the tactile experience of handling vinyl records to the unique sound quality that comes from playing them on a turntable, it’s an experience that simply can’t be replicated by digital formats.

Additionally, owning a turntable can help improve your taste in music. With the resurgence of vinyl, there are countless classic albums and hidden gems waiting to be discovered. By exploring the world of vinyl, you may find yourself discovering new artists and genres that you never would have otherwise.

However, it’s important to note that owning a turntable does come with some downsides. For one, it can be an expensive investment. Turntables can range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand, depending on the quality and features you’re looking for.

Additionally, turntables require more maintenance than digital music players. You’ll need to regularly clean your records and replace your stylus to ensure optimal sound quality.

The Appeal Of Turntables: Why Vinyl Is Making A Comeback

Vinyl records have seen a resurgence in popularity in recent years, and for good reason. They offer a more immersive listening experience and provide a warmer sound than digital formats. In addition, many famous artists are releasing their music on vinyl again due to the superior sound quality that it provides. This has led to a renewed interest in turntables, with both the records and equipment becoming collector’s items.

One of the main appeals of turntables is the nostalgic feel that comes with owning and playing vinyl records. The experience of unwrapping and playing a record is unlike any other format. The sleeves, the old-time smell, and the feel of the vinyl material all contribute to a unique and tangible quality that cannot be replaced in the digital realm.

Moreover, vinyl has a more omni-dimensional sound that really fills the room a lot better than compressed digital formats. Music aficionados say you can hear the difference in sound, and that vinyl is better than CD or digital files. Vinyl records have more peaks and valleys compared to the compressed digital form, which allows for a depth of sound that is unparalleled when it comes to playing music on other media.

Additionally, owning a turntable can be a worthwhile investment since vinyl records retain their resell value over time. This is especially true for older vinyl records and phonographs, which can fetch a pretty penny on the market. Moreover, exploring the world of vinyl can help improve your taste in music since there are countless classic albums and hidden gems waiting to be discovered.

The Pros Of Owning A Turntable: Sound Quality And Collectibility

One of the biggest pros of owning a turntable is the unparalleled sound quality it provides. Unlike digital music players, turntables produce an analog sound that is warmer and more natural. This is because vinyl records are able to capture more detail and nuance in the music than digital formats, resulting in a richer and more immersive listening experience.

In addition to the superior sound quality, owning a turntable also allows for collectibility. Vinyl records are not only a medium for enjoying music, but they are also a form of art and culture. Many people enjoy collecting vinyl records for their unique album artwork and packaging, as well as their historical significance.

Furthermore, vinyl records have proven to be a worthwhile investment. Unlike digital music files that can easily be duplicated and distributed, vinyl records are physical objects that hold value over time. This makes them highly sought after by collectors and enthusiasts, and can lead to a significant increase in value over time.

The Cons Of Owning A Turntable: Maintenance And Cost

While owning a turntable can be a rewarding experience, there are some potential downsides to consider. One of the biggest drawbacks is the cost. Turntables can be expensive, with some high-end models costing thousands of dollars. Even entry-level turntables can be pricier than digital music players.

In addition to the initial cost of the turntable, there are ongoing maintenance costs to consider as well. Vinyl records require proper storage and handling to prevent damage or deterioration. You’ll need to invest in record sleeves and storage containers to keep your collection in good condition. Additionally, you’ll need to regularly clean your records to remove dust and debris that can cause skips or affect sound quality.

Another ongoing cost is replacing the stylus on your turntable cartridge. The stylus is the needle that reads the grooves on the record, and it will eventually wear out over time. Depending on the quality of your stylus and how often you play your records, you may need to replace it every few years.

Finally, if you don’t already have a receiver or amplifier and speakers, you’ll need to purchase those as well in order to listen to your records. This can be an additional expense, especially if you’re looking for high-quality audio equipment.

How To Choose The Right Turntable For You: Considerations And Features To Look For

If you’ve decided to invest in a turntable, it’s important to choose the right one for your needs. Here are some considerations and features to look for when selecting a turntable:

1. Type of Drive System: The first feature to consider is the type of drive system. Direct-drive turntables are great for scratch DJs and those who play longer sets due to their superior torque and reliability. Belt drive turntables offer a superior sound quality that is ideal for audiophiles and those who prefer a more natural sound.

2. Cartridge: The cartridge is another important feature to consider. While most cartridges are pre-mounted, there are a variety of types available, and it’s important to select one that suits your needs. Moving magnet cartridges are a popular choice as they are more reliable and offer great sound.

3. Budget: Lastly, when choosing a turntable, it’s important to consider your budget. Turntables range in price greatly, from entry-level models to high-end models that can cost several thousand dollars. It’s important to keep in mind that a more expensive model is not necessarily better; you should focus on finding the best turntable for your budget and needs.

4. Platter: The platter is where the record sits on top of the turntable, so it’s important to choose a turntable with a good quality platter that minimizes distortion and reads the record as accurately as possible.

5. Tonearm: The tonearm is responsible for tracking the record grooves with high accuracy, so it’s important to choose a turntable with a tonearm made from strong, lightweight materials like aluminum or carbon fiber.

6. Anti-Skate Dial: This feature helps prevent the needle from sliding across the record, so make sure to fine-tune this setting when setting up your turntable.

7. Rumble Rating: A turntable’s rumble rating measures how it takes vibrations, so choose a turntable with a higher rumble rating in the -40 or -50 range at minimum.

By considering these features and your own personal preferences, you can choose the right turntable for you and start enjoying the unique experience of playing vinyl records.

Conclusion: Is A Turntable Worth The Investment?

Despite the potential downsides, we believe that investing in a turntable is definitely worth it for any music lover. While it may be a more expensive option upfront, it’s important to remember that a turntable is an investment that will stand the test of time. Plus, the unique listening experience and potential for discovering new music make it a worthwhile investment.

It’s also important to note that there are options available for those on a tighter budget. Entry-level turntables, such as the ones with built-in speakers, are a great way to get started with vinyl without breaking the bank. And as your budget allows, you can always upgrade your equipment for even better sound quality.

In conclusion, if you’re looking for a more immersive and rewarding listening experience, investing in a turntable is definitely worth it. Just be prepared to put in a little extra effort to maintain your equipment and keep your vinyl collection in top condition.