When it comes to finding the best vintage turntables, knowing where to look is absolutely key. Indeed, these items are not necessarily quite as easy to get hold of as a modern turntable, and even then, finding one that meets your needs can be tricky. As such, we’ve come up with a list of our top 5 vintage turntables to help you find the one that will perfectly meet your needs.
Things to Consider Before Buying
If you’re thinking of buying a vintage turntable then it’s important that you first consider a few things to make sure you don’t end up buying a turntable that really isn’t worth any more than its value as parts and pieces. So, before making your choice and buying a vintage turntable, what should you think about?
Well, first, you’ll need to think about the condition of the turntable and the level of wear and tear. Vintage turntables can be in great condition if they’ve been properly looked after, but one which has not been maintained may not be so good and might end up being a bad investment. So, think about your budget and the condition of the vintage turntable – this could be the difference between buying a good one and a bad one.
Also, think about the reputation of the seller you’re buying from. Have they sold items in the past if you’ve found them through an online selling site, for example? Are they asking for a deposit upfront to secure the item – and if so, how do you know that the seller is legitimate, or could they just be trying to make some quick money? Make sure to consider this too to avoid getting scammed by unsavory sellers.
The Top 5 Vintage Turntables
This particular turntable is a great choice if you want a simplistic and classy option that will fit almost any aesthetic, and has a number of exciting features which make them highly popular models to buy – especially if you can find one that has been stored well and which has not gotten damaged over the years. However, the primary drawback for this model is in the price, with well looked after models often achieving $350 or more when sold online, either privately or as part of an auction.
The Technics SP range of vintage turntables are excellent for offering high quality direct drive balance, when compared to other models produced at around the same time. Of the different models available in the range, it can generally be agreed that the Technics SP-10 is the best sounding option for someone looking for a functional vintage turntable that will deliver great sound for your favorite songs. However, as with everything, there is a drawback to this model – and this is of its appearance.
The Technics SP models are generally not the best looking of all of the different vintage turntables, making them more suitable as functional pieces for playing your favorite songs from childhood than as a feature piece for your home. Of course, this will depend on your personal tastes though – aesthetics are subjective, after all.
Generally, models from the Technics SP range in decent condition will sell for around $600 or more, making them some of the priciest vintage turntables in our list. However, the sound quality is generally unparalleled for a turntable of its age, potentially making this price worthwhile for a buyer or fan of vinyl music looking to make good use of the unit!
Another option from the Technics range if you’re looking for a vintage turntable is that of the Technics 1200. This model is a relatively easy turntable to set up and is a great choice in particular for DJs looking for something a little different to spice up their acts, due to its impressive sound. The system is also incredibly durable and in general, finding a good quality and condition Technics 1200 model is a little easier than the SP range, which can be somewhat more elusive and in slightly higher demand (as they are more affordable, with many of the 1200 range products being sold making around the $1000 mark).
Generally coming in at around the $800 mark, this turntable may not be a good option if you are looking for a turntable on a budget – however, it is generally considered to be a great option of vintage turntable for many enthusiasts. They generally perform well on all fronts, from aesthetic value to durability and even the sound quality is exceptionally high; unfortunately, this does mean that they rarely come up for sale, so you may need to be willing to travel in order to get hold of one of these vintage turntables.
Goldring / Lenco GL75
Beating the Sansui model in second only for its increased availability, the Goldring / Lenco GL75 is a great model which balances style, motor power and affordability. Most models for this vintage turntable will come in at around the $150 or so, depending on where you look and the condition of the piece; some may be more or less expensive than this, but either way, this is arguably one of the most affordable options for vintage turntables out there, especially when its quality of audio is considered.
A worthwhile feature of this particular model is that it also offers a speed adjustment setting, with rpm being adjustable between 30 and 86rpm – which allows for music customization, to a degree. The only real drawback of this model is that the arm can be low quality and potentially, may need replacing, as they can be prone to damage or snapping; you may want to query this with the seller before making any commitments.
There are many different turntables out there on the market today, and the quality of each will vary based on its condition. The price will likely also reflect that. With this in mind, we hope that our list of our top picks for the best vintage turntables will have helped you to make up your mind about which turntable will be right for you!