How to Choose the Right Turntable for Yourself

How to Choose the Right Turntable for Yourself

With music lovers enthusiastic about returning to tradition, vinyl records are once again becoming a popular music medium. At the heart of vinyl fun, a vinyl record player is one of the key elements that ensures you get the best sound quality and enjoyable experience.

But with so many different models and brands of vinyl record players on the market, how do you choose the one that’s right for you? This article will provide you with information from multiple perspectives, including budget, turntable type, driver type, tonearm, cartridge, rotation speed, built-in amplifier, turntable and chassis material, features, make and model, appearance, and availability of accessories Provides detailed guidance.

1. Budget

The first consideration is your budget. Vinyl record players range in price from a few hundred dollars to thousands of dollars. Therefore, it is important to be clear about your budget before making a purchase. Once you determine your budget, it will be easier to find options that work for you.

At the lower end of the market, you can find vinyl record players that cost relatively less but still have decent sound quality. The mid-range market offers more high-quality options, while the high-end market is filled with luxury and custom-made record players. No matter your budget, you can find a vinyl record player that works for you. At, you can purchase high-fidelity turntables, ranging in price from $200 to $400.

2. Type of record player

Vinyl record players are mainly divided into three types: manual, semi-automatic and fully automatic.

Manual record player: Manual operation is required to raise and lower the tone arm and place the record. This requires more hands-on involvement, but also provides more control. 

  • All the vinyl record players you can find at are manually operated. This means the user needs to raise and lower the tonearm themselves, as well as manually place the stylus on the record to start playing music. Manually operated vinyl record players are often favored by music lovers because they offer more control and hands-on involvement, allowing users to operate and enjoy music at their own speed and style. This traditional record player design is also often used to enjoy the pure and classic sound quality of vinyl records.

    Semi-automatic record players: Usually the tonearm is raised and lowered automatically, but you need to manually place the record. They provide operational convenience.

    Fully automatic record player: automatically raises and lowers the tone arm and places records, providing maximum convenience. This might be a good choice for newbies. Choosing the type of record player depends on your operational preferences and whether you're willing to sacrifice some control for convenience.

    3. Driver type

    There are two types of drives for vinyl record players: belt drive and direct drive.

    Belt Drive: generally provide higher audio quality because they reduce the intrusion of mechanical noise, but require regular belt replacement. All of the record players you can find at are belt-driven vinyl record players.

    • Belt-driven vinyl record players have unique advantages, including their low noise output and sound quality. This design isolates the motor from the record platter with a rubber belt, reducing the vibration and noise generated by the motor's operation from being transmitted to the record, thus providing clearer and more precise sound quality. In addition, belt drive systems help extend the life of records and cartridges because they reduce friction and wear. This makes belt-driven vinyl record players the first choice for music enthusiasts and record collectors to enjoy a pure music experience.

      Direct Drive: More durable and suitable for situations where DJ operation is required as they can handle stopping and starting better. You can choose belt drive for higher audio quality or direct drive for greater durability, depending on your needs.

      5. Phono cartridge

      The cartridge, also known as the stylus, is another key component of a vinyl record player. Different types of cartridges produce different sound characteristics. For example, Moving Magnet (MM) cartridges generally provide a clear sound, while Moving Coil (MC) cartridges provide more detail and dynamic range. It’s important to choose a cartridge that suits your musical taste. 

      6. Rotation speed

      Most vinyl records play at 33 1/3 RPM and 45 RPM, but there are some older records that require 78 RPM. Make sure your record player supports these different speeds so you can play your entire vinyl collection.

      7. Built-in amplifier

      Some vinyl record players come with built-in amplifiers, which allows you to connect the record player to an audio system that does not have a head amplifier. If your sound system doesn't have a built-in amplifier, make sure your record player has this feature to avoid purchasing additional audio equipment.

      8. Turntable and chassis materials

      The material of the turntable and chassis also affects the sound quality and appearance. Common materials include MDF, acrylic, and metal. Acrylic is generally considered to offer better sound quality, while metal may be more durable. In addition, the material will also affect the appearance of the record player, so it is also important to choose a material that matches your home decoration.

      Turntable HQKZ-006 (material: MDF, aluminium, plastic)

      Turntable ICE1(material: acrylic, aluminium, plastic)

      9. Features

      Some vinyl record players come with additional features such as USB connectivity, speed control, auto-stop functionality, and more. These features can provide additional convenience or functionality based on your needs. For example, a USB connection lets you transcribe vinyl records into digital audio files, while a speed control can be used to fine-tune the tone.

      10. Manufacturer and model

      It's usually a good idea to choose reputable brands and models, as they usually have better sound quality and reliability. Some famous vinyl record player manufacturers include Technics, Rega, Audio-Technica, Pro-Ject and Retrolife. However, it’s also possible to learn about other options by reading reviews and asking music lovers, as some niche brands may also offer excellent vinyl record players.

      11. Appearance

      The appearance of your vinyl record player is also important as it affects your listening experience and home décor. Some vinyl record players have wooden casings, providing a warm look, while others may have metal or plastic casings. Choose a look that coordinates with your home décor to ensure the record player blends into your living space.

      12. Availability of accessories

      Finally, consider the accessories that come with your record player and the availability of accessories in the market. These accessories may include cartridges, tonearms, stylus, turntable pads, and protective covers. Make sure your record player comes with all the accessories and can easily find replacement parts to maintain and upgrade your record player.


      All that said, choosing a vinyl record player that's right for you requires careful consideration of several factors, including your budget, operating preferences, sound quality expectations, appearance, and usability.

      Different people have different needs in a vinyl record player, but by choosing carefully, you can find a record player that's perfect for you and brings more fun and satisfaction to your musical journey. Whether you're an avid vinyl collector or just entering the world of vinyl music, choosing the right record player will have a profound impact on your listening experience.

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