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Jim M. Hastings-trew –
Clean, minimalist design. Some assembly required, but fairly easy. Fairly lightweight and plastic feeling. The tone arm mechanism moves smoothly and quietly. Playing a record involves placing it on the platter, closing the lid, and pushing one button. No touching the tonearm to drop the needle. I wouldn’t call this very portable — it feels a little fragile for that kind of use. So far I’ve tried the Bluetooth connectivity and it worked well once I remembered to unpair my speakers from my phone. I have yet to try the USB option to digitize a record, but I don’t anticipate any issues there. The sound quality has been pristine. Happy with this purchase.
I picked up the Sony record player after my parents found a stash of old records from legendary artists like Elvis, Eric Clapton, KISS and more. It was exactly the motivation I needed to jump on thr vinyl record bandwagon. I chose the Sony player because of its cost and supposed good sound quality. I needed a record player with a pre-amp since my Sony STR-DN1080 receiver does not have a phono input.The record player is well packed and extremely simple to assemble. It just takes a couple of minutes to put the belt, platter, dust cover and connections to the receiver. The player itself is light and mostly plastic but it’s adequate. It looks sleek when assembled.Using the record player is easy as there is a off/standby button at the rear, a gain setting for the preamp and start/stop/rise-lower buttons at the front. The player can handle 33 and 45 rpm records.I listened to a few records and I haven’t heard such wonderful sound quality from any audio CD, super-audio CD, DSD file or streaming service. The perfect separation of each instrument and voice is absolutely incredible. Everyone today is missing out on what music should really sound like. Some of the records I tried were from 1965 and later so pops and crackles were evident on the dirtierscratched ones.I realize getting into vinyl records can be extremely expensive but I am more than happy with the Sony player as a first step into this hobby. Worth every penny to get introduced to how music really sounds like!
David Pearlman –
A mídia não pôde ser carregada. (Please see my attached video if you want a “live” review demonstrating the features and performance of this turntable).The vinyl revival of the past few years has brought with it a slew of new turntables to market. Whereas a decade ago you might find 1-2 turntables on sale at a large electronics retailer, there are now dozens of options.The range of turntables can be summarized as follows: You have your bargain basement turntables (typically retailing under $100), your low/mid range turntables in the $100-250 range, your mid-range turntables that go from around $300 to $700, and your sky’s the limit turntables that go from $700 to, well, the sky.For someone looking to get into the vinyl album hobby, I would start by saying that there’s nothing in the bargain basement range that you should really be considering. These turntables provide uniformly lousy sound, have uniformly lousy construction, and will uniformly expose your LPs to undue wear. Unless the turntable is for a young kid who will break whatever you give them, avoid these.The low/mid range is a lot better, although turntables in this range are still limited. Typically, they don’t offer much in the way of adjustment, they come with medicore cartridges, construction is just adequate, etc. But these are real turntables, and if you’re not already an audiophile, they’re a suitable place to start the hobby.You can get a terrific turntable in the next segments, but that’s kind of beyond our story for today.What we have here with this Sony is priced somewhat near the top end of the low/midrange turntable lines. Does it justify the price? Let’s take a look.This turntable offers several useful features:A) It offers three types of connectivity: 1) Bluetooth connectivity (to a Bluetooth speaker or headphones) 2) RCA cable connectivity (to a receiver or amplifier or amplified speaker with appropriate inputs) 3) USB connectivity (to a computer, mostly to rip music)B) It offer a couple of options related to (A): 1) Phono out (if you are running into a receiver with a phono preamp built in) 2) Line out (if you are running into any other device that takes RCA cables)C) It allows you to switch the gain: Low/medium/high. This is, essentially, the loudness of the signal that comes out of the turntable.D) You can switch between 7″ and 12″ vinyl settingsE) You can switch between 33 1/3 and 45 rpm settingsG) You can control the tone arm with three buttons 1) Start lifts the tone arm off the stand and places it at the beginning of your record 2) Lift lifts the tone up straight up and keeps it there, allowing you to move the tone arm safely 3) Pushing lift again gently drops the tone arm back on the record 4) Stop lifts the tone arm and returns it to the standThat’s it for features.In terms of components, this turntable comes with:1) A decent dust cover2) A 45 rpm adapter3) An aluminum record platter and polyester mat for the platterLet’s go through this a bit, eh?In terms of connectivity, the Bluetooth is the thing that sets this turntable apart from much of the competition. It’s a nice feature, and if you have Bluetooth speakers or headphones, you’ll surely find this a bonus. In fact, this is probably a large part of why you’re looking at this turntable. The Bluetooth paired pretty simply with both a speaker and headphones that I tested with it.Having the option for either photo out or line out is nice–it means there’s a phone preamp built in, but you can bypass it if you want. Of course, this is irrelevant if you use Bluetooth.I found the gain switch to be pretty useless. Yes, I could discern a difference in volume when I played with it. But I don’t really need it. Medium setting gave a robust signal and this feels like a feature added on because it didn’t cost much and it added to the feature list.The start/lift/stop buttons are where the real worth comes here. This is what we used to call back in the day a “fully automatic turntable.” For silly reasons, audiophiles have long insisted that you don’t want ANY motorized functions on the turntable, and this ethos has unfortunately filtered down to even cheap turntables. Many mid/high end turntables don’t even turn themselves off at the end of a record. It’s quite a treat to be able to just push a button, have the record start, and not worry that your record will play for the next 24 hours while you forgot it was on and it just goes round and round endlessly at the inner groove–wearing out your stylus at the same time.I found the tonearm control buttons to work well, both for 7″ and 12″ records.It’s a relief they toss in a dust cover–some manufactures consider that an option and, honestly, what customer considers that an option? The 45 rpm adapter isn’t worth 50 cents, but it’s nice to have if you don’t already have one.How is the sound? Obviously, part of that is going to depend on what speakers/headphones you are using. But using a good quality Bluetooth speaker and high quality Bluetooth headphones, I found the sound quality to be decent. It is NOT going to wring every ounce of sound out of your precious vinyl. This is not a wolf in sheep’s clothing (and Bluetooth is not an audiophile transmission mode anyway). But the sound is perfectly decent, and what I’d expect from a turntable in this price range. Significantly, I found the records seemed to track pretty well–no unexpected groove distortion. There’s no speed adjustment, but the speed seemed pretty dead on.Speaking of no adjustment, there’s also no adjustment for tracking for, for azimuth or for anti-skating. If you don’t know what any of these are, that’s OK. They’re all adjustment that variously let you change the angle at which your cartridge touches the record, how much weight your stylus places on the record, and how well the tonearm swings as the groove pulls it towards the center. In most cheap turntables, you don’t get these adjustments. In most expensive turntables you do. Now, these adjustments can be painful to make correctly–proper set up even if you’re an expert can take a little while. And you can do as much harm as good if you don’t know what you’re doing. So to some extent it’s an advantage they’re not available on a turntable like this that clearly is appealing to newcomers. But then you’re at the mercy of Sony to have set them up well. As I mentioned, records seemed to track well, so it seems they’ve done a decent job.Construction of the turntable–outside of the tone arm and the platter–is mostly plastic. The turntable is relatively light and doesn’t seem to be heirloom quality. But, again, that’s to be expected at this price point. The turntable is belt driven–arguably an advantage in higher end turntables, kind of a shrug for turntables in this range. The possible resonances that a plastic turntable base makes possible are probably at least as problematic as any motor rumble dissociation from the record that a belt drive (vs. electronic drive) might solve.On the whole, this is a decent entry level turntable. I would recommend it to someone just starting out who wants a no fuss turntable with all the possible connections and decent sound. If you stay with the hobby, you’ll probably eventually upgrade. But measured with features vs cost in this segment, this is a turntable I’d suggest checking out.