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View now at Amazon. The edges of the plinth are a little coarse, for example, but it has it where it counts. View now at Amazon Every significant aspect of a record player - the integrity of its plinth, the effectiveness of its platter, the robustness and consistency of its motor, the design of its tonearm and the quality of its cartridge - has had care lavished on it by Rega to deliver the Planar 2.
Worthwhile improvements from here cost exponentially more. The shortlist: best record player 1. Available in black or silver. Our best buy is where Rega starts to up the ante. The Planar 2 has a new tonearm with Rega Carbon cartridge, a new low-noise motor, a stylish and effective glass platter, a new central bearing. Available in white or black. Available in white, black or red. You get Bluetooth for wireless pairing, onboard amplification for 10:37 - Pixelord - Places (Vinyl widest range of compatibility, and a tonearm with cartridge already attached and set up.
Available in black. Lots of money, but you do get a bit of everything: stunning build quality, aluminium top plate, direct drive motor, pre-fitted tonearm and cartridge. Available in grey. There are even some cables in the box, so it can plug straight into an amp or desktop speaker. The USB output for making digital copies is welcome too. Available in white, grey, black, red, yellow or green.
It comes with an Ortofon cartridge on a 22cm tonearm, and is set up for anti-skate and tracking force. Just plug the hard-wired RCA cables into an amp, put the belt around the platter and away you go. Ion Audio has had a real stab at offering plenty for next-to nothing. Max LP is a compact, plasticky turntable with just a 7in platter that 12in discs overhang, but it has integrated speakers and a USB socket for copying vinyl or any other source, via its auxiliary input. Author Bio Simon Lucas Simon Lucas is a consumer electronics and audio equipment expert, with almost two decades of comparative testing, appraising and reviewing experience for the likes of What Hi-Fi?
Considering this is a technology that has been read the Last Rites on more than one occasion, the market for record players is in remarkably rude health. To ensure we put the most popular, most highly regarded and most realistically priced record players to the test, we looked hard at the 10:37 - Pixelord - Places (Vinyl of Amazon, John Lewis and Richer Sounds to establish the most popular price points and feature sets.
Some just want to be able to dabble with the vinyl format, some demand more convenience than record players are usually associated with, and some want to archive rare or perhaps less-than pristine records rather than degrading them further with constant playing.
From a long-list of 26 record players at what we consider to be sensible prices we narrowed it down to a list of 10, based on features, price and popularity. Price also plays a big part. The only reason the vinyl format has endured as long as it has is because listeners enjoy the way it sounds. All it has to do after that is offer all the facilities you need, not cost a fortune and be built to last by a brand you can trust. So while every turntable here was given a score for its build quality, its feature set, its ease of set-up and ease of use, the most significant weighting is given to sound quality.
The Ion, Lenco and Audio Technica also feature USB outputs for making digital copies - how straightforward this process is, and how good the resulting digital files sounded, was also taken into account. Wireless Bluetooth connectivity, which takes a lot of the pain out of turntable ownership, is included with the Sony and Cambridge Audio decks - so the ease and robustness of connection, as well as the resulting sound, were considered. They both include amplification, the Ion has integrated speakers and a USB output, while the Pro-Ject has Bluetooth reception on board.
This means they stand or fall purely on their quality of construction, ease of set-up and use, and sound quality. The quality of vinyl each turntable was playing was also taken into account. Plus, of course, the reverse was also examined - how much if any degradation of 10:37 - Pixelord - Places (Vinyl LP do any of these turntables cause?
The most expensive deck by a margin is the best built, an absolute dream to operate, has very decent preamplification Album) deeply impressive wireless performance, in terms of both stability and sound. Third place belongs to the Rega Planar 1. But ultimately the compromises sonic, mostly, though less significantly in terms of finish are enough to see it finish no better than seventh. Eigth place might seem a strange place for a deck as able as the Thorens TD to fetch up.
That tonearm is an elegant piece of engineering art, too. A ninth-place finish might seem difficult to put a positive spin on, but the Lenco L is far from a disaster.
In fact, for the money it sounds quite composed and makes reasonably faithful if slightly lightweight digital copies. The turntable template was set some years ago, and so any improvements are bound to be incremental. The version of Planar 2 is a machine that justifies every penny of its asking price. Rega has ensured the Planar 2 is in no way unfriendly or intimidating to set up and get playing.
The Carbon cartridge is pre-fitted, interconnects to an amplifier are hard-wired to the deck… all that needs doing is attaching the weight to balance the tonearm. The sound it serves up is substantial but not musclebound, sprightly but not hurried, detailed but not over-analytical. Everything that makes a well-sorted turntable such an evocative listen - the warmth of its tonality, the effortless management of rhythms, the smooth integration of disparate sounds and frequencies - is present here, and in quantity.
It establishes a broad, deep stage for performers, positions them on it unshakably, and propels music forwards in the most natural and unforced manner. There are better record players than the Rega Planar 2it goes without saying.
But their differences are more significant where materials, and finish, and outright bling are concerned. Like the Pro-Ject Primary E. The plinth 10:37 - Pixelord - Places (Vinyl your basic rectangle, rather sharp at the corners, 10:37 - Pixelord - Places (Vinyl, and it sits under an equally standard hinged dust-cover. Switching from
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