Turntables give us the ultimate old-school experience. Thus it is extremely important to choose the one that provides you with the right level of bass, midrange, clarity, and definition.
If you are browsing the internet to look for a cost-efficient turntable that has all the essential features, well, you have stumbled upon just the right article. Below are all the turntables that we thought stood out in the endless list of turntables on various online retail stores. The best thing about these particular units? They all cost fewer than 500 dollars and have the maximum amount of features that will surely give you a high-quality sound output.
If you want an affordable turntable for your home, keep on reading and you will find 7 great models for under $500. If on the other hand want turntables for DJing, go straight to the best DJ turntables in the market.
Top 7 Turntables under $500 in 2020 – Reviews
- Has a DC motor which maintains ideal rotational speed.
- It has 3 different speed modes (33 1/3, 45, and 78 RPM).
- Quartz-controlled pitch with high precision.
- Highly adjustable and anti-vibration feet to stabilize the platter.
Audio Technica has stepped into the market with a turntable that has a High-torque, direct-drive motor that has deemed itself to be one of the best devices out there for all appreciators, aspirants, and professional DJs.
The best thing about this particular turntable is that it allows a smooth application of digitizing your former LPs. All you need to do is connect this spectacular turntable to your computer by the USB outlet. That’s it and all your old LPs will be converted to high-definition FLAC or MP3 files. The USB cables, as well as the adapter cables, come with the turntable.
To make things further easier for you, software compatible for both PC and MAC is included in the package so that you can conveniently digitize as many of the old LPs as you want.
The S-shaped tonearm allows you to adjust the anti-stake, counterweight, lock, and tone arm’s height with ease. The tonearm is lifted by the lift lever and hydraulic pressure. Moreover, to stabilize the tonearm during transportation, it consists of a lock.
You can adjust the pitch easily by the pitch adjustment feature which allows you to vary it between the percentages of -/+ 10% to -/+ 20%. To aid you in queuing different songs and playing your favorite beats, a stroboscopic platter speed meter and stylus target light have been incorporated in the unit.
To ensure the durability, the prototype of the platter is made from cast-aluminum. The AT-LP120 turntable comes with a headshell, a slip mat, and a pro cartridge that can be directly plugged into the tonearm.
- Two different modes of speed (33 1/3 and 45 RPM).
- Low-noise direct-drive motor.
- Low resonance platter.
- The platter has a lathe-turned edge for optimal precision.
- It can be easily connected to powered amplifiers and speakers.
Not only does Orbit Plus Turntable have a sophisticated design, but it also has an equally sophisticated and impressive build-up. It has complete stability of speed which helps to wade off unwanted resonances and vibrations. These results in a punchier and vibrant bass that will make your crowd go crazy!
It includes the Ortofon OM5E Cartridge which is versatile in providing just the right amount of clarity, pitch, and bass to various genres. So, you will not be restricted to listening to music belonging to a mundane amount of genres.
The Tone Arm that accessorizes this turntable has optimally adjusted bearings which help you to move it without any rigidness. Moreover, the stylus moves frictionless allows you to deliver and listen to music without any distortion. It further helps to get a highly defined audio. Each bearing is fixed by hand and equips an adjustable counterweight and anti-skate property.
U-Turn Audio Orbit Plus turntable contains an acrylic platter that provides you with an impressive acoustic output and also an outstanding speed consistency. The platter features high-density and low-resonance features which help to stabilize the platter during operation. The platter is 5/8 inches in thickness and weighs only 3 pounds.
In addition to all this, it has a built-in phono preamp which makes it super easy to connect your turntable to any powered speakers. You won’t need any external preamp. The turntable includes Precision Resistors and WIMA Capacitors which help to boost the device’s signals. Furthermore, it consists of a full bypass switch which aids you to disable it if you want to use it with an external preamp.
- Consists of a high-torque direct-drive motor.
- A 2.5 lbs full-sized platter.
- The pitch can easily be adjusted.
- Time ramping can be control by the time knobs.
If you are looking for a turntable that will give you the clearest output of the sound of vinyl, you have come to the right place. Numark NTX1000 Turntable gives you a performance you can expect from a professional DJ in a club.
Numark’s turntable has a full-platter which makes that weighs around 2.5 pounds which ensures that your vinyl remains in its true state without any scratching. Moreover, this feature allows any vinyl to play without any vibrations caused by live scenarios or deep bass.
The turntable also adorns a high-toque direct-drive motor which allows you to control the speed at two different levels; at 33 1/3 RPM and 45 RPM modes. It delivers start-up torque worth 4 kgs within only 4 seconds! This means you can start the party without any inconvenient delay!
Furthermore, the turntable has a simple S-Shaped tonearm which is for precise tracking and correct song selection. It allows you to adjust the height according to your requirements. In addition to this, it allows the dampening of the cue and gives anti-stake control. Likewise, the device has a counterweight that can be adjusted easily so you can balance the tone-arm optimally.
Moreover, the turntable gives you full control of the pitch which you can adjust at the levels of 8%, 16%, and 50% to enable you to create the ideal synchronization and effects. In addition, it also lets you fade the pitch by simply pushing the reset button. It’s that easy!
The prototype of this device allows you to work in a bass-heavy environment without your unit vibrating and disrupting the flow of smooth music.
4. Pioneer PLX-500-K Turntable
- It gives you an adapter for almost 45 EP records.
- A clear and warm sound output.
- Impressive vibration dampening.
- It contains an electronic braking system.
Pioneer Pro Turntable is a promising device when it comes to giving you a full, hands-on the best sound experience a turntable can. It has a superb high-quality sound design with no distortions. It has a USB outlet that lets you connect your unit directly to a sound system without any requirement of an external amplifier.
Furthermore, you can easily convert your vinyl to digital files with high-end quality by simply connecting your unit to your computer or laptop through the USB outlet. Additionally, you can use the turntable to scratch or mix the vinyl records.
The turntable has an exclusive sleeve stand that lets you display the record cover in it. Moreover, it contains a servo-type drive and an efficiently S-shaped tone-arm that will play your music without any vibrations. The platter is made of die-casting aluminum material.
You do not even have to spend extra money on covers or headshells because Pioneer Pro Turntables give you all the accessories you need for free. The accessories include a slipmat, a dust cover, a silver edition headshell, and a jacket stand.
Not only Pioneer PLX-500 is a great choice for home use, but it is also an affordable option for DJs and club setups.
- Compatible with aptX codec.
- Wireless connection technology.
- Minimum vibration.
- Durable and reliable.
- Automatic functions controlled by front panel buttons.
Audio-Technica has entered the market of electronic appliances with a turntable that offers you not only clear and well-defined sound output but also lets you play High Fidelity (Hi-Fi) audio with its exceptional Bluetooth wireless technology.
If you want to play your vinyl on powered speakers, just connect the turntable to the speakers wirelessly! It is as easy as that. If you have wired audio systems, no problem! Just connect it to the turntable through the dual RCA output cable which is present in the package!
Moreover, it offers you two seed modes which you can choose from. These are; 33 1/3 and 45 RPM. The platter that incorporates in it is of an anti-vibration die-cast aluminum material.
The tonearm is a redesign so that you can play your music with minimum vibrations and improved tracking. The cartridge is an integral dual magnet cartridge which has an easily replaceable stylus. It also contains an AC adapter that works to give you increased clarity in the music playing.
AT-LP60 is probably the best affordable turntables out there.
- Tonearm provides impressive sound details.
- A Gain select switch lets you balance the audio level to the gain.
- The platter provides ultimate stability.
- Easy digitizing of LPs.
- Thick dust covering to protect the device.
Sony gives you a perfect turntable that lets you effortlessly enjoy your records without any additional hassle. It has an auto start, return, and stop buttons that let you control the flow of music coming from the turntable. Furthermore, it offers to who different speed modes; 33 1/3 RPM and 45 RPM with the latter’s adapter stored in a slot under the deck.
You do not have to worry when it comes to the quality of the sound. Sony has included in its turntable a phono line/ output preamp which is easily switchable by the flick of a finger. Moreover, it provides you with 3 different gain settings so you can play your music at the gain that matches the audio for a wholesome experience.
This turntable also allows you to connect it to any wireless headphone, speaker, or Bluetooth electronic device as long as it is compatible. Sony also gives you an RCA cable so that you can plug the unit directly into a stereo device.
Moreover, the platter is made of aluminum and gives you a stable, clear, and anti-resonance sound output. The tonearm it adorns is also made from aluminum so that it can give you improved tracking.
The accessories that come with the turntable when you purchase it includes a removable dust cover, 45 RPM adaptor, and resonance dampening slip mat and a USB cable.
- It provides you a warm, pure and soulful sound experience.
- Control speed of the playback.
- It contains an isolated motor for minimum vibrations.
- It gives you a vibrant bass and a full midrange.
FLuance RT85 Turntable gives you the most definitive listening experience possible. Its output of the sound is natural and warm so you will be able to enjoy your music session to the fullest.
The unit consists of an Ortofon 2M Blue elliptical cartridge which gives you high-resolution details of the music as well as works to provide you with high channel separation, minimum disruptions, and enhanced linearity. The acrylic platter is made from aluminum and damps away all the unnecessary resonance which gives you a more defined, three-dimensional experience. Moreover, this also helps to provide you with improved clarity, rich midrange, and smooth, deep bass.
The motor that resides in this particular turntable has isolation to prevent unwanted noise and vibrations. You can also control the speed of the motor which helps to keep the latter stable and consistent while it is functional.
The body of the turntable is made from a solid wood plinth with a smooth finish. The feel offers adjustable vibration reduction. RT95 vinyl turntable is right on our budget of $500 and the vintage look makes it irresistible.
These were our top 7 choices for the best turntables under $500 available in the market!
You will also need a good quality pair of speakers to properly enjoy your vinyl player. For this, we recommend bookshelf or floor-standing speakers. Check out more at:
- The best bookshelf speakers under $200
- The best speakers for vinyl turntables
- Best floor-standing speakers under $1000
To find a turntable that befits all your requirements, it is better to make a list of all the features you think are necessary for the unit you want to buy. To help you compile that list, we are concluding all the factors that you need to consider when you are surfing for a turntable.
What should I look for when buying a record player?
1. Vibration Dampening:
Dampening is a process through which manufacturers try to eliminate the unnecessary vibrations which cause distortions in the sound of the turntable. Mostly these are controlled by the type of motor that your turntable has.
Drive-Direct motors, as well as belt-drive motors, efficiently reduce the disruptions in the sound so look out for those.
2. Quality of the tonearm:
The tonearm is the part of the turntable that moves on the vinyl disc. It gives you a stable output of music. Thus check for the material the tonearm is made off so that it does not damage your discs as well as gives you an optimal music experience. Remember to always clean your vinyl records and store them in a safe and moist-free room to extend the life of the tonearm.
3. Speed Modes:
Most turntables allow you to control the velocity of the turntable at two or three different speeds. So buy the unit that has the maximum number of speed modes so you can unleash the DJ within you.
You want your turntable to work optimally for as long as possible. For that, always check the specifications to see the material which was used to build the turntable. Most turntables are made of aluminum or woof plinth which is sturdy and protects your unit from damage.
What is the best turntable for home use?
The Audio Technica AT-LP120 is probably the best turntable for home use out there. It is commonly used by DJs and audiophiles of any music preference and style.
What is the best affordable turntable out there?
The Audio Technica AT-LP120 wins one more category as one of the best value-for-money turntables in the market today.
How much should I spend on turntables?
A good quality turntable that will last you for years and will sound great at all times, will cost you anywhere between $300 to $700. If you are looking for a record player for professional use, then you will have to invest up to $3000 for a pair.
What’s the difference between a record player and a turntable?
For every audiophile out there, a turntable and a record player is the same thing. However, vinyl records on term, are also supposed to come with built-in speakers or an amplifier.
For under $500 you can get a vinyl turntable that adheres to your requirements. There are more choices in the market, but in our list, we covered the needs of the most! If however, you can find a used Technics SL-1200 then you should definitely go for it.
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