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Still have those vinyl platters?
...new turntables...

 9:26 pm on Mar 20, 2012 (gmt 0)

The iPhone and iPad are truly elegant designs, but they are the rare exceptions in the rather drab world of consumer electronics. Most cameras, printers, computers, home theater receivers, and speakers are pretty sedate, but there is one product category that stands out: turntables. I've picked a choice selection that represents remarkable achievements in industrial design, and they're highly functional, exquisitely engineered products.


I have more than 2,000 33s and 78s. and two good turntables, but some of these are breath-takingly beautiful.



 12:46 am on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

I've had my eye on a Thorens or a Rega turntable for a couple decades. Belt drive turntables still rule. I once attended an audiophile conference in San Francisco, around 1990, and was blown away by how good (analog) music could sound. Knowing how good music can sound, I could never go backwards in quality beyond the lower quality of a CD. All those mp3 gadgets blow to the bone. I could never buy into that low fidelity crap.


 5:47 am on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

My Thorens (2005) is a charm and cost as much. My other turntable is an RCA excised from a huge console "hi-fi" from 1941... that's for the 78 collection. All of which has been since been dumped to digital. Might blow to the bone... but these are not mp3 rips... but I can't keep spinning those platters (78's) as they are self-destructive...

Automan Empire

 5:52 am on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

One of these brands was making music boxes in the 19th century that are still playing today. I wonder what the supply of usable vinyl media and players will be like 100 years hence?


 6:58 am on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

but these are not mp3 rips... but I can't keep spinning those platters (78's) as they are self-destructive...

Right, like CDs, they weren't meant to last. The technology for higher quality is available, just not in the MP3 format.


 9:42 am on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

Besides the obvious sound quality benefits, most of those turntables featured are works of art.


 9:46 am on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

I used to smile at the hi-fi buffs going on about how much better vinyl was but then I went into an independent electrical store where the owner was testing a turntable that he had just fixed. I hadn't heard sound that good outside of a concert hall for 20 years.


 5:55 pm on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

Analog Rules! He, he, he.

The main complaint about analog LPs is the noise, the crackles and pops, etc. Well, if you look after the LPs they don't make that much noise at all. Apart from that a good turntable is designed to read the music not the surface noise.
Plus, now we all know that if you don't look after your CDs, you could have serious trouble with them!

I run a Linn Sondek LP12, Syrinx PU2 Gold, Azak. Not the best, but pretty good, none the less.


 6:09 pm on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

We have a Rega P2 we picked up for a song from a local thrift store.

I love old blues and soul and opera on vinyl.


 9:11 pm on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

Vinyl records are making a comeback. I know a few people who are rediscovering them and spending a fortune on the new and heavy pressings.

Very different sound, just not as convenient.


 11:33 pm on Mar 21, 2012 (gmt 0)

CDs are smaller, but I wouldn't call them convenient. So hard to read the printed sleeve, apart from anything else.
This is something that was discussed when the CD first appeared. I worked at selling high end hi-fi in London's west end. None of the CDs publicity seemed to cover quality of sound. Smaller, no background noise, 'indistructable', whatever, but no mention of more musical. They sold for twice the cost of LPs and cost peanuts to mass produce. They were a way for record companies to cash in. Now, the same comnpanies are suffering from their own digital revolution. LOL. There is some kind of justice there....


 8:15 am on Mar 22, 2012 (gmt 0)

Why is it that mechanical devices are always so much better looking than purely electronic ones? Because the most beauty comes from designing it into the functionality, not packaging around it, and the functional parts of electronics are just too ugly to to that with?


 8:54 pm on Mar 22, 2012 (gmt 0)

They sold for twice the cost of LPs and cost peanuts to mass produce. They were a way for record companies to cash in.

Yep, which created a lot of guilt free downloading.

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