Starting a new hobby is always a bit intimidating, especially when you’re trying to find good, quality materials. This becomes so true for a hobby like Djing, where the expenses can quickly add up. So, if you’re starting out, how do you know which turntable is the best for you to use?
Any turntable can be used for Djing. Turntables such as the Audio-Technica AT-LP, Pioneer PLX-500-K, and the Crosley DJ 100 are all good beginner turntables. These turntables will need to be upgraded, so investing in a super OEM, or technic turntable will be more durable and more useful in the long run.
We’ll discuss some of the recommended turntables for beginners, like the ones mentioned above. But, we’ll also discuss why investing in a more professional-grade turntable may turn out to be the better investment.
Audio Technica AT-LP
The Audio Technica AT-LP is a great beginning model because of its quality. It is light and portable and has felt mats surrounding it that help to absorb vibrations. You can also use it to play vinyl records, which many beginning turntables don’t offer. It comes equipped with a direct drive, so you can get your tunes started right away. You can change the speed that your discs run from 33.3 rpm to 45 or 75 rpm. This allows you to have more control over how fast you want your music to play.
However, because it is a beginning model, its motor is weaker than the professional-grade turntables that are also available. The sound quality is pretty good, but if you want it to come more rich and clear, you’ll need to upgrade your needle. If you’re only interested in doing Djing as a hobby, this may be a great beginning turntable to start out with.
The Pioneer PLX-500-K is similar to the Audio Technica AT-LP. It runs at the same speeds and it also has a direct drive. One nice perk with this turntable is that you can connect it directly to your laptop. This gives you the option to rip the audio from your vinyl records onto your computer.
Because it is similar to the Audio Technica AT-LP, it has similar drawbacks. The motor is weak and the turntable has low torque. However, it is built to have a nice audio output. The designers wanted to recreate a nostalgic feeling of childhood when you listen to your vinyl records. It is a good beginning model and has a lot of great qualities which makes it a valuable option.
Crosley DJ 100
Out of beginning models, the Crosley DJ 100 is one of the best to look at. It comes with a direct drive, like the two mentioned above. This makes it easy for you to control the speed that the disc is moving. Additionally, you can reverse the direction of the motor smoothly and easily.
It may not have as many speed options as other beginning turntables, but it is sturdy and reliable while still being easy to transport. This makes it a much more desirable product. However, because it is a beginning model, you’ll need to upgrade it if you want better results.
Making the Right Investment
While looking at multiple forums to discover what turntables were the best for beginners, the strongest suggestion was to invest in a high-quality turntable. Investing in Super OEMs or second-rate Technic turntables was stressed over and over again. This is because investing in a high-quality product when you’re just starting off is less expensive.
These high-end turntables are more expensive in the short term. However, as these forum users explained, it was much better because they saved money down the road. They didn’t have to worry about upgrading the needle or the tonearm. They found a product that had the features that they wanted and would be able to use throughout their entire Djing career.
Investing in a high-quality turntable is going to be pivotal if you decide to become serious with Djing. You want to make sure that you have a turntable that produces the quality of music you want, and one that you can control. Being able to choose what speeds you have and whether you want the ability to reverse the motor are all things a high-end turntable offers.
Technic turntables were the most popular suggestion on the forums I looked at. This is because they are the original turntable, and were used heavily throughout the 1970s and up until 2010 when they were discontinued. They were built with a sturdy design and a great sound system. It provides everything a DJ needs to enjoy a gig. Because of their popularity and durability, you may be able to buy one from an online website such as Craigslist for a reasonable price.
Even if the Technic turntable you see is out of your expected price range, it is an offer that you should seriously consider. Products made in the 1990s were built to last much longer than the products being produced now. Even if you’re unsure of how serious you want to get into Djing, investing in one will still be a good choice.
If you’re not able to find a Technic turntable, you can always invest in a Super OEM. These models act as the modern counterparts to the Technic turntables. The sound quality minimally declines from a Technic turntable, but it is such a small decline that most people won’t notice it. It certainly isn’t an issue that should prevent you from investing in one of these models.
Super OEMs are built with technic-like motors, have more dampening and weight, and have a sturdier casing than models for beginners. They last much longer than the ones mentioned earlier in this article and they have more versatility as well. Some of the top recommended Super OEMs are models like the Reloop 7000, Reloop 6000, Pioneer PLX 1000, Omnitronic 5250 or 5220, and the SYNQ XTRM.
In the end, it is up to you to decide how seriously you want to pursue Djing. If it is something that will not go very far, a beginning model might be the better choice. However, if you are serious about pursuing Djing and are just starting out, spending the extra money for a better model is going to be a much better investment.