Best first record player?

Discussion in 'Home Audio (Stereo Systems)' started by kracdown, Dec 7, 2016.

  1. kracdown

    kracdown Custom User Title Gold Supporting Member

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    I've got music on records (including my own music) but have never actually played them! What's the best first record player? Not looking to spend an insane amount - under $500.00.
     
  2. dB

    dB Member

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    Rega Planar 1 from what I've seen/read lately. I'm on the market as well, and in a similar price range.
     
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  3. 0018g

    0018g Member

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    Remember-the cartridge is every bit as important as the table, so budget accordingly.

    Sometimes you can get a good deal on a combo at Needle Dr. Rega, Music Hall, Pro-Ject-all good 1st timers.
     
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  4. Brian Scherzer

    Brian Scherzer Staff Member

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    As stated above, getting a combo package that includes turntable, arm and cartridge assures getting a good match at whatever price-point you choose. As with almost anything, you can spend anywhere from a few hundred to hundreds of thousands of dollars. Vinyl sounds just fine on lower priced turntables!
     
  5. JPF

    JPF Member

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  6. deadlands

    deadlands Member

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    Tone arm is very important to! A good arm helps tame noise and rumble.
     
  7. deadlands

    deadlands Member

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    The Pro-ject Debut Carbon is a really good turntable. Great tonearm and cartridge comes with it at the expense of convenience features like auto-play, speed switch etc ... But you get huge tonal bang for your buck.
     
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  8. saxophonist56

    saxophonist56 Member

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    those look pretty nice! i've been using my dads old dual ....it's sounds okay but a bit fiddly since i got it repaired. it's cool using my dad's old turntable.
    he had it stashed in the basement circa 1964. had two needles one for 78's and one for 33's. dual 1009. much more musical than the technics 1200 i stumbled upon.
     
  9. Scott Naylor

    Scott Naylor Supporting Member

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    I can't emphasize enough how correct setup is with vinyl replay. Mounting a cartridge properly makes changing strings on a Bigsby look like child's play. As mentioned above, a complete kit makes a lot of sense, especially at your price point. Music Direct in Chicago has Rega Planar 1 rigs with all of those crucial adjustment donee by the Rega factory. Rega makes excellent products with exceptional value and musicality throughout their line. The Planar 1 meets your price point as well.
     
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  10. Brion

    Brion Supporting Member

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    I looked into many of these tables mentioned when I was getting back into vinyl. I went with a Denon table with auto start and stop features. You know what? It sounds and works great and it was just over 3 bills. I have no experience with the tables mentioned in the previous posts because I couldn't try them anywhere, but my gut feel is that any difference in sound between them and my Denon would be so minute that the conveniences offered by my table would offset that easily and it is cheaper. I enjoy spinning my LP's on this table and that is all that really matters. I use vintage Onkyo and Sansui receivers , solid state stuff with decent phono preamps built in.
     
  11. Scott Naylor

    Scott Naylor Supporting Member

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    Brion, which model Denon is yours in case this is the route the OP opts for?
     
  12. Brion

    Brion Supporting Member

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    I wasn't near the table when I posted, but it is a Denon DP300F.
    I'm sure that the Rega's etc. are excellent products and their lack of bells and whistles allow the manufacturers to put the money towards the parts that reproduce the best possible sound from vinyl records. My little set up probably wasn't going to allow those refinements to make a big audible difference (pure conjecture on my part) so I opted for a lower priced one with some features I wanted and that I had some experience with. I'm happy with my decision and have been for the last year. I just wanted to share a different perspective with the OP. It is unknown what the other components in his system are, or if a turntable is going to be the first piece of an awesome new hi fi system. I think it would be good to know if spinning the vinyl he has is the only goal, or if there is more to it. So @kracdown can you elaborate a little more on what your endgame is?
     
  13. hubberjub

    hubberjub Silver Supporting Member

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  14. hacker

    hacker Member

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    I would go for a used Technics Direct Drive like the 1200 or one of its close relatives. As long as it hasn't been beaten up by a DJ. There are a ton of mods for them if you like, but they sound great "stock" and will outlive you. Once setup, there is minimal maintenance, unlike any belt drive system. Belts stretch-period. Then your records sound wonky.
     
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  15. Empros

    Empros Supporting Member

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    Going to go with a generic answer. Audio Technica LP120.

    Don't care what anyone says - it just works. Sure it's not "fancy" but it's easy to setup, sounds great and works perfectly. Never had any issues. Also never had an urge to upgrade to a better player.
     
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  16. saxophonist56

    saxophonist56 Member

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    rega, debut carbon, uturn.....can't decide. leaning u turn.
     
    Last edited: Dec 25, 2016
  17. mcp

    mcp Member

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  18. saxophonist56

    saxophonist56 Member

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  19. mcp

    mcp Member

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    The cartridge does make a big difference and I would recommend going for the best one you can, but they can be upgraded later. Phono pre-amp will be necessary with most, but again they can be upgraded. At $500 budget, Rega or Project or similar should get you a reliable turn table. They have proven track records.

    Amazon has a Rega entry model cheaper than most.
     

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