people's choice

The Best Record Players on Amazon, According to Hyperenthusiastic Reviewers

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Here at the Strategist, we like to think of ourselves as crazy (in the good way) about the stuff we buy (like pillows), but as much as we’d like to, we can’t try everything. Which is why we have People’s Choice, in which we find the best-reviewed (that’s four-to-five-star reviews and lots of ’em) products and single out the most convincing. And while we’ve written about the best portable speakers and wireless headphones, and even asked professional DJs to share their favorite turntables, here we’ve gone deep into the best record players and turntables on Amazon, according to the people. (Note that reviews have been edited for length and clarity.)

Best record player for beginners

Audio-Technica AT-LP60 Fully Automatic Stereo Turntable System, Silver

“I am just getting into the world of records and turntables, and I initially bought a Crosley Cruiser because that’s the perfect beginner’s turntable, right? Wrong. It was a terrible decision, and I returned it the next day. I heard about this turntable through the YouTube channel Vinyl Eyezz, and was very surprised to see that it was only $25 more expensive than the Crosley. I bought it, and the second I opened it, I could tell this was a much better turntable than Crosley. Once I played a record, it was clear that I had made a great choice. The sound is so clear — no skipping, no issues whatsoever. Would highly recommend for anyone like me who is just a beginner. There may be better turntables out there, I’m sure there are, but I couldn’t ask for any more for the price! Fantastic value.”

Best USB record player

Audio-Technica AT-LP60BK-USB Fully Automatic Belt-Drive Stereo Turntable (USB & Analog), Black

“Really quality and a great starter. I couldn’t be happier with my Audio-Technica. The self-starting feature is quite nice; a monkey could assemble the three pieces out of the box; the belt keeps the sound tight and flawless. Had it for about six months and not one issue. The sound is warm and incredibly clear, even with my older records. Spend the extra $20, don’t go for one of those cutesy, hipster, built-in-speaker, luggage-box things, you’re wasting your money … Plus, there’s the added perk of Audacity software being included, with which you can convert all your vinyl to digital form. Well-made from quality materials, fantastic price, USB-capable, every cable you could possibly need to hook it up to any speaker is also included, so no trips to RadioShack. Literally open the box and enjoy!”

Best turntable with built-in preamp

Fluance RT80 High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable Record Player

“This turntable looks fantastic. I could find no flaw in the finish or any machine parts. The preamp produces a clean and vibrant quality sound, and the needle really is a quality piece. Yes, there are better options out there — but I don’t need all that, and if you don’t need all that, don’t pay for it. This is a quality piece at an amazing price. The build quality is superb, and everything about this turntable is for the love of sound. I would recommend this product to anyone looking to listen to vinyl, for the first-time listener or someone looking to upgrade.”

Best direct-drive turntable with USB

Audio-Technica AT-LP120-USB Direct-Drive Professional Turntable in Silver

“Just got this turntable a week ago after reading many, many reviews, all of which were really positive, so I felt pretty confident spending the money. Packaging from the factory was super secure, and within ten minutes, I had the table unpacked, hooked up to my receiver, and fully operational. Setup is a breeze. The cartridge supplied with the table is more than adequate, and I plan on using it for a while before upgrading … The rest of the functions are really simple and intuitive and just, well, functional. Really happy with this upgrade from my mid-’80s Technics SL D2, and when compared to my friend’s Technics 1200, the AT-LP120 is a no-brainer for the money. For a casual listener who wants their records to sound good, this is the turntable. A respectful design from a respected company.”

Best Bluetooth record player

Audio-Technica AT-LP60BK-BT Fully Automatic Bluetooth Wireless Belt-Drive Stereo Turntable, Black

“I have owned five different record players, including a vintage turntable … The sound quality is great, and the Bluetooth was not a feature I was thinking I would use, but I was proven wrong again. The Bluetooth connects seamlessly with the soundbar that I use for my television. The sound quality is beautiful. I like the sound of vinyl, and it really compliments the records, even using a soundbar. If you are back and forth between models and can’t decide, choose this one. I was you, couldn’t decide and deterred by questionable reviews. Get this turntable, you won’t be sorry.”

Best audiophile turntable

Pro-Ject Debut Carbon DC (Piano Black)

“First of all, it’s a beautiful, minimalist record player, and matched my piano speaker set perfectly. The lack of ‘features’ is a turnoff to many, but it didn’t deter me. In the end, if you want a player that has auto-return and other bells and whistles, this is not for you … Once I had her assembled and plugged in through the moderately priced Pro-Ject amp I also purchased here, and into the receiver, it was time. I placed the first album of Led Zeppelin’s Physical Graffiti on the platter and started up the motor. It was instant heaven when the analog guitar opening of ‘Custard Pie’ blared out of my speakers. It was love at first sound — so much warmer and richer than anything I’ve heard in 25 years! After playing several classics from Black Sabbath to the Doors, I was in vinyl heaven. It was like discovering the music I’ve listened to for decades all over again for the first time.”

Best turntable for scratching

Audio-Technica AT-LP1240-USB Direct Drive DJ Turntable

“I bought this table for scratching and sampling last month. Powerful direct-drive motor makes scratching smooth and precise … Doesn’t come with a needle, but it has a headshell. I bought it with the Shure M477s, and they screw right in, no problem. It has a removable dust cover, which is very handy. It has a 45 adapter and also a light that you can plug in next to the platter for low-light scenarios. You can adjust the start-and-stop speeds of the motor with two knobs at the bottom of the table. You can also adjust pitch in varying degrees with a light indicator for when it’s at zero. The USB port allows for sampling and converting vinyl to your PC. Comes with a slip mat. Overall, it is very sturdy, has many features, is great for scratching and sampling, and is a good bargain. Looking to buy another one very soon.”

Best all-in-one record player with built-in speakers

Victrola Nostalgic Aviator Wood 8-in-1 Bluetooth Turntable Entertainment Center, Mahogany

“I bought this for my wife because she has a lot of childhood records, and she really wanted to play them for our 1-year-old. The device has the benefit of playing CDs, cassettes, and Bluetooth for MP3 players or other Bluetooth devices. It will also record records to CD. The sound quality of the speakers is fantastic for what it is. Obviously, it won’t take the place of a good surround system, but it is plenty loud, and the sound is not tinny at all, but a full sound. My wife has been using it daily since we bought it, and is now shopping for more old records to play on it.”

Best retro record player with CD player

Victrola 50’s Retro 3-Speed Bluetooth Turntable With Stereo, CD Player and Speakers, Blue

“Lightweight, everything works right out of the box. CD player is perfect, [so are the] phonograph and radio. Love, love the look. Sound is great, and I can turn up the volume while listening to my Led Zeppelin records when I am sewing. My vast collection will finally get played again.”

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The Best Record Players, According to Amazon Reviewers