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Somehow, the turntable has made a comeback, and if you hang around audiophiles, they’ve more or less convinced you to buy one by now. If not, their enthusiasm for Bluetooth turntables has got you sinking into research about turntables, and you’ve been looking up everything you can find on this old-world equipment. After all, few audio equipment manufacturers have managed to combine analog technology with modern tech perfectly to produce a state-of-the-art turntable allowing wireless connection. Moreover, the best Bluetooth turntable allows you to enjoy the crisp sound unique to record players from any smart device.
We’ve made it easy for you to grasp all there is to learn about turntables by putting together comprehensive details about turntables, how to choose one, what features are important in a turntable and why this is so. Learn why things like rotating speed, Bluetooth capacity, type of drive, and components like platter, tonearm, counterweight, and plinth that affect sound quality in a turntable matter.
We must admit that we had plenty of fun researching into Bluetooth turntables. We came across true music aficionados, audiophiles and music teachers who breathe, talk, and live music. Spending weeks that didn’t seem long enough with these groups of folks made us aware of just how little we knew about music. But we’re glad we did it because we came out so much better-informed. And now, we bring this information to you. Find all the details, including a comparative table, in-detail reviews of each product, and a buying guide to help you find the best Bluetooth turntable for your desired sound experience.
More features: included dual RCA output cable, dual moving magnet phono cartridge, anti-resonance, die-cast aluminum platter
For more than 50 years, Audio-Technica has supplied us with high-quality, easy-to-use, reliable, and really affordable turntables. This particular model not only boasts Bluetooth compatibility; it’s also a great option for a newbie due to its reasonable price and features like automatic start. By the way, if you’re only starting to explore the marvelous world of vinyl, you’ll probably want to read our review for the best beginner record players.
The AT-LP60XBT-BK is a belt-drive turntable with Bluetooth capability. This simply means the platter is not directly joined to the motor but to an elastic belt which is then connected to the motor. In this model, the type of drive is a plus because it eliminates noise vibrations, meaning the signals you get are clean, with zero interference.
The AT-LP60XBT-BK combines digital and analog aspects to give you a dual-technology experience, which you’ll love if you like to savor the nostalgic and fulfilling feeling that comes with operating a turntable manually. As much as you can use Bluetooth to connect the turntable to other devices and operate it, you also have the option to manually operate the turntable.
This turntable plays both 331/3 and 45RPM records, meaning you’ll be able to play almost all your records, the maxi-singles and EPs included.
Its platter is made from die-cast aluminum, a material that is not only strong enough to last throughout the turntable’s useful life, but also has anti-resonance properties; it won’t transmit vibrations that might affect the sound quality.
The turntable comes with a built-in pre-amplifier, a switchable phono with RCA cables that can be connected to diverse audio systems, so you don’t have to additionally invest in a preamp.
More features: 2-year warranty, adjustable counterweight and anti-skating force
Up next is the 1byone Belt Drive Turntable. This is an excellent option from the 1byone brand. It is an entry level turntable that comes with the best warranty out of all the options that we have reviewed so far on this roundup. There are several features that makes this option one of the best that you can find right now.
Although this model comes with a simple design and appearance, it features a complex tonearm and a construction that is very durable and that will five you years of lovely performance.
It comes with a rectangular plinth with a nice finish. Part of the design includes a detachable dust cover and a powerful motor that powers the machine.
The platter here is made of solid material and the machine certainly seems to be more expensive than its actual value. Each turntable needs a cartridge, and the cartridge of this model is fitted to the complex tone arm.
In terms of performance, you would be hardpressed to find a turntable as excellent as this model. During use, the sound quality it produced is remarkable and one of the best at the price point. The resolution, bass, and other audio qualities are quite impressive as well.
Overall, this is a wonderful option that will serve well for years to come. The minor gripe that we have with this option is that the suspension can be somewhat tricky to adjust. Other than that, this is a lovely turntable that gives you incredible sound over the years.
Other features: natural Walnut finish, brushed aluminum controls, die-cast anti-resonance aluminum platter, 1/8- inch headphone connector
Vinyl is a popular choice among many musicians and audiophiles as vinyl records sound way better than Mp3s ever could. This turntable is a high-performance model that allows you musical freedom with the recent technology while maintaining the unbeatable original sound of vinyl.
The ION Audio PRO500BT Belt Drive Turntable is quite a large but stylishly designed turntable with a classic look. It will feel right at home in your plush living room with its luxurious walnut finish and brushed aluminum controls.
The unit has all the essential features necessary for first-rate musical production. The setting is up is a breeze thanks to its adjustable feet that facilitate a level installation for the optimal sound quality.
When it comes to audio quality, this unit is second to none. Its gold-plated RCA jacks enable a clear signal transfer for the best sound quality and a heavy die-cast anti-resonance aluminum platter that manages the signal to noise ratio.
In addition, the turntable has a few modern touches like a switchable phono pre-amp for the best audio quality. It also allows you to use the unit with a traditional stereo or powered speakers. Plus, you can stream music wirelessly to any Bluetooth speaker so you can place it anywhere in your house or studio.
Another plus for this unit is that you can convert your analog vinyl records into digital files using USB.
What stands out?
Easy to set up
Excellent audio quality
Can be used with a traditional stereo or powered speaker
More features: vinyl-to-USB Recording, 12-month warranty
Built to play all the 3 speeds of records; 33, 45, and 78 RPM, this is a fantastic choice for anyone with a diverse collection of records in various speeds.
The HOFEINZ VS1102 boasts of a true classic natural wood vintage style with a little modern touch. It will blend in well with your contemporary and traditional interior décor.
Most musicians and audiophiles prefer classic turntables not only for the high-quality vinyl audio sounds but also for their analog operation. This unit will give you the 60s vibe with its auto cum manual tone-arm mechanism.
What’s more, it features 2-way built-in speakers that bring out its sound in the clearest and most balanced way. You wouldn’t even need to connect to external speakers unless you want a clubhouse thump. It is loud enough and well-packed if you want to listen to your records.
It is Bluetooth enabled, so you can connect your music to any smart device to listen to your records plus, it has a recording function that allows you to record your vinyl hits in Mp3 via USB. You wouldn’t need any software or a computer for this, all you have to do is plug in and record.
You can also enjoy an endless Mp3 playback on the turntable if you want.
More features: record directly from vinyl, CD, and cassette
The Victrola Nostalgic Aviator Wood 8-in-1 is a belt-drive turntable cum entertainment center, pretty much like the name implies. It’s a multi-functional, vintage turntable with radio, CD player, cassette player and recording capability that seamlessly blends old and modern audio technology. You’ll be able to record any music on CD, cassette or vinyl directly to USB, in MP3 format, and won’t need to connect to the computer to do the recording.
It also has a 3.5mm aux-in and cable, which you can use to play music from any non-Bluetooth device. Granted, the sound is only as good as you’d expect from restrictive built-in speakers, but it performs a lot better than most turntables in this caliber. Should you desire the boom and punch of external speakers, you can connect these via cable to the headphone jack. Bluetooth is only supported as an input function, so you won’t be able to connect to Bluetooth speakers.
The radio function supports both AM and FM bands, and for the full radio effect, you get a rotary tuner to manipulate the dial the old-fashioned way. It comes with a remote control and, using this, you can operate the turntable from a distance. Bluetooth range is 33 feet, a distance that allows you to enjoy the music in a different room, with little interruption.
It’s somewhat retro design and natural look construction make it a fancy accessory in any room. You get great color options, too, with white and brown being top choices.
More features: headphones output; autostop; installation CD is included
ION is quite reputable for always being at the forefront of cutting-edge technology when it comes to USB turntables; the ION Audio Air LP Vinyl Record Player shows exactly why. Combining a very modern appearance with a pretty neat and space-age design, this record player is a very interesting unit. With it, you can effortlessly connect your Bluetooth-enabled speakers so you’d be able to transmit the sound being produced by your aux-connected audio sources or records.
Furthermore, you can rest assured that nothing will disturb your experience with this player. That’s because it comes with a quiet belt-driven system that combines with auto-stop, allowing for a convenient, effortless operation. Even if you unexpectedly sleep off while listening, the platter will stop spinning once the end of the record is reached. For maximum durability and longevity, the unit is also made of ultra-sturdy diamond-tipped ceramic cartridge. Plus, it delivers a high-output signal, ideal for direct connection to speakers and amplifiers.
Of course, you can also pair the unit with your smartphone and listen privately with a headset. It’s also capable of full USB transfer, and there is RCA output as well, allowing you to connect your stereo system. In terms of connectivity generally, this record player is impressive, even allowing you to either connect to your PC or Mac. Overall, if you like the idea of a Bluetooth turntable, this is a smart choice. Our complaint? Well, the Bluetooth takes forever to connect.
More features: built in CD player, USB capability, AM/FM radio
Victrola is one of those brands that have existed for more than a century and whose products you know for a fact won’t disappoint. We didn’t want to take chances though and had to try the 50s Retro 3-Speed Bluetooth Turntable for first-hand experience. There’s a lot to love about this model, but let’s start with the design.
It’s made in an iconic retro design that makes you reflect on ‘60s music when you first see it. From the box shape to the chrome, metal detailing at the front, it certainly does look like a classic music system. In black, it looks quite neat, but it is the red option that had us vowing to own it.
To the more practical side of things now, the Vitrola 50s is a 3-speed turntable and will play all types of records: 33-1/3, 45, and 78 RPM. If your records collection is a mixture of all three speeds, you’ll be glad to be able to play them all from one device.
The Vitrola 50s is more than a turntable/vinyl record player. It’s also a CD player, radio, and MP3 recorder. It can play both AM and FM radio bands, operate like a regular CD player, and play wireless music via Bluetooth. To turn your vinyl records to MP3, the turntable uses USB encoding and recording software. Simply connect the turntable to your computer using USB and use the recording software that comes bundled with the turntable to record the music. The software is PC and Mac compatible.
Why is it special?
Multi-functional with CD player, MP3 recorder and radio functions
Has a Bluetooth range of more than 33 feet
What are the flaws?
The elastic belt will eventually need to be replaced due to regular wear and tear
Stylus: ortofone OM 5E MM cartridge with elliptical shaped stylus
More features: vertical or wall-mount, available in 3 colors, adapter for 7” singles, left- and right-handed options
A variable speed, belt-drive, and pre-amplifier, are just some of the features that set this model apart from several others on the market. The main attraction for us, and we are sure, for several others, is that this is a vertical turntable. As a result, it looks different from the rest and is the best vertical turntable on this list.
The Pro-ject brand is known for the high quality of its equipment, and this is certainly no exception. When it comes to the most important factors that make a turntable an excellent option, you can rest assured that this unit meets most of the requirements.
The design is impressive and the black finish certainly looks great regardless of where you place it. Aside from the nice finish, this turntable is made of high quality materials. For example, the platter is an acrylic platter and the cartridge is an Ortofon OM cartridge, which is one of the best at this price point. Also, the belt drive system is one of the best from the brand.
Away from the design, the performance here is impressive. While it is considered as an entry-level option, you get powerful performance to boot. The detail is fast and detailed.
There are some things that make this not the best option on our list. For one, it is not very easy to install. The manual isn’t easy to decipher. Additionally, the counterweight calibration isn’t the best that we have come across.
Why are we impressed?
Packaged with cartridge
What negatives must you be aware of?
Difficult to set up
Things to Consider
Whether you own just a few records or are an avid vinyl records collector, it’s always good to have the freedom to listen to your records whenever you want to. This can only happen when you have your own turntable. The old turntable may have little use other than playing these records, but modern turntables can do so much more. This buying guide seeks to show you why you need a turntable, what you can do with it, and how to choose one.
Why purchase a Bluetooth turntable?
Among the many modern turntables you’ll come across, one of the most popular is the Bluetooth turntable. There are many factors that make this turntable desirable, not the least of which is the ability to connect to devices wirelessly. If given the option to choose between a wireless device and a device that uses a wired/cable connection, most people would go for the wireless device. The neat, minimalist look with no cables crisscrossing each other is a definite attraction.
Plus, you can connect it to any smart device, as long as it is Bluetooth-enabled. And which smart device isn’t? Goes to show the greater versatility in use you get to enjoy with this turntable vis-a-vis non-Bluetooth turntables. You can store your music anywhere – in the iPhone, iPad, iPod, Android phone, tablet, and any other portable device, and pair this device with the turntable for crisp, clear music when you need it.
Features to consider before buying a Bluetooth turntable
A Bluetooth turntable, no matter how basic, isn’t a 10-dollar purchase. At the very least, you’ll spend $100 on one, possibly much more. You want to make your money count by making this a worthy purchase, and you do that by considering important features, as outlined below.
There are generally three rotating speeds: 33-1/3 (often referred to simply as 33), 45, and 78 RPM. The rotation speed depicts the level at which the turntable enjoys peak performance. The earliest records developed, around 1925, performed optimally at 78 rotations per minute and were big compared to later versions. Even so, they could only offer 3–4 minutes of playback time. This is because the faster the record rotated, the smaller the amount of information it could hold. They were also brittle and prone to damage. Later, a smaller version, the 33 RPM record and which came to be famously known as the LP, was developed. It had a higher playback capability than the 78 RPM record and was also more durable. The 45 RPM record was the last to be invented. It offered a similar playback amount to the 78, but it was smaller and more durable.
Before further improvements on vinyl records could be made, advancements in radio technology were made, and thereafter, the tape and CD players were invented. That marked the end of vinyl records as these latter music formats became more popular, given they could pack more music information than vinyl records. Still, vinyl records continued to be used, especially by record companies.
The 78-RPM record was overshadowed by the 33 and 45-RPM records, but it’s still available in older, pre-1930 records. However, it’s not as widely in use or common as the other two.
When looking to buy a turntable for your records, check that it is compatible with the rotating speed of the records. Some turntables support only two speeds, while others support all three rotation speeds.
While the Bluetooth experience is generally the same in all devices, the Bluetooth range that’s supported in the turntable dictates the distance within which you’ll be able to connect to the turntable. If the indicated distance is 30 feet, it means you can get a connection, provided the Bluetooth device you’re using to connect to the turntable is within a 30-foot radius of the turntable.
Again, newer versions of Bluetooth may have faster data transfer speeds compared to older versions. So in two turntables with two Bluetooth versions, you may experience a faster connection in the turntable that has a newer Bluetooth version.
As you evaluate the Bluetooth capacity, check also whether the turntable only supports Bluetooth In or has both Bluetooth In and Out functions.
When only Bluetooth In capabilities are supported, it means you can only play music from Bluetooth-enabled devices.
When both Bluetooth in and out capabilities are supported, it means you can play music from your Bluetooth devices and listen to the turntable music on Bluetooth speakers of any kind.
Type: direct-drive vs. belt-drive
Turntables are usually of two types: direct-drive and belt-drive. Each type has its pros and cons. Understanding what these are in each will help you make a choice that’s right for the kind of experience you want from the turntable.
In both types, the record sits on a component known as a platter. It is this component that spins as the record plays. The difference between the two types is how the motor is located in relation to the platter.
In direct-drive turntables, the platter is in direct contact with the motor. As a result, the platter enjoys a more constant playback speed. Direct-drive turntables also have a higher torque, which causes less noise distortion. It’s also possible to spin the platter backward, DJ-style, for those scratch sound effects.
In belt-drive turntables, the platter is attached to an elastic belt, which is in turn attached to the motor. These turntables have less torque and, consequently, less accurate speeds. However, because the platter is insulated from the motor, very little noise from the motor reaches the tone arm. As a result, these turntables have better sound quality.
Stylus and platter
The stylus, also known as the needle, is the cone-shaped, diamond-tipped component that rests against the record and moves up and down between record grooves. It’s fitted into the cartridge and is fully removable. To allow for mobility, the stylus is connected to the tone arm.
The platter is the platform on which the record sits as it plays. In addition to holding the record in place, it also maintains the playback speed and serves as a cushion against noise – most notably motor vibrations – blocking this noise from reaching the stylus or tonearm and distorting the sound quality.
The platter should be firm and rigid. Choose a platter with a good weight because the heavier it is, the better it is at insulating the stylus against noise.
The denser the platter is, the less resonant it is, and this means little vibration filtering through to the stylus.
Similarly, when the platter is dense, it provides better consistency in speed playback. The platter is usually made from acrylic, metal, or MDF. You only need to weigh the advantages of each material over the others and pick what you feel would offer the best sound experience.
The tonearm is connected to the stylus and is responsible for producing sound in the turntable. It’s the component that balances and moves the stylus across the groove as needed. As the stylus comes into contact with the record grooves, it transmits vibrations through the wires inside the tonearm and onto the coils of the cartridge, where they are turned into electric signals.
Choose a turntable with a tonearm that is rigid and yet light enough to move freely, well-aligned, and fully adjustable.
The pre-amplifier, also known as phono stage, phono preamplifier, or simply preamp, is a type of amplifier specifically designed to boost record player signals. It’s typically available as a built-in component in record players or as a stand-alone unit for use with record players. You won’t find in modern audio receivers, however, as these are not built for record player signals.
If your record player doesn’t have an inbuilt pre-amplifer, you’ll need to search for a special amplifier for turntable.
Additional features that are useful include:
Anti-skid weight to hold the stylus and tonearm in place
Quality plinth with the ability to successfully isolate vibrations
Sturdy counterweight to balance the weight of the tonearm and regulate the weight on the stylus at any given time
It may be important to consider the materials used on some of these key components, for example, things like carbon fiber for the tonearm and acrylic for the platter, as some materials are considerably better than others.
A record player is the complete gadget/audio equipment that plays vinyl records, while a turntable is the part of the record player that holds the record. Often, people wrongly use the two terms interchangeably, but the technical definition, as pointed out in the simplified explanation above, shows two different items, albeit related in nature. As such, the record player will be composed of different parts made from different materials, but the turntable consists largely of the plate where the record sits. This plate is typically made from metal, which could be aluminum for the more expensive turntables or steel for cheaper models.
Choose a Bluetooth turntable that supports all three rotation speeds. That is: a turntable that can play 33 RPM, 45 RPM, and 78 RPM records. This way, whoever you’re giving the turntable can enjoy any record with ease, whether it’s the old-fashioned and bulky 78 or the smaller, more modern 33. A turntable that is fully automatic will be easy to operate even for people who are not tech-savvy or inclined to operating machines manually. If you’re gifting the turntable to someone who is older, consider getting one in vintage-style. It will bring them fond memories of the past.
Choosing the best turntable for your needs may not be so simple, but with a comprehensive guide like this one, you get a good idea of what to focus on and which models to pay close attention to. It’s hard to pick the winner, but we like the Audio-Technica AT-LP60XBT-BK best. This highly-rated and popular turntable is quite affordable yet sports a great design, including the quality platter and belt drive which reduce vibration. Our second pick is the 1byone Belt Drive Turntable, which looks amazing, is easy to install, offers great sound, and comes with a long 2-year warranty. Third comes the ION Audio Air LP best. It’s well-balanced with good proportions of all the various features that matter. Our best budget Bluetooth turntable is the Victrola 50’s. This one offers all the basic features that are desirable in any turntable without draining the pocket. Because it’s okay to occasionally spoil yourself, especially if you’ve been using a basic turntable for a while, the Sony PS-LX310BT is a fantastic upgrade, barring the high cost. If you don’t want to spend $1,000 on a turntable just yet, get the Hofeinz Vintage Wireless Bluetooth Out Turntable. Its sound quality is the closest there is to the sound quality of a high-end model.