The Ultimate Analog Wishlist: Gifts for the Vinyl Lover
December 13, 2022
Vinyl has been revived with music lovers of all ages, so if there’s someone on your list who loves playing records, check out these killer turntables and accessories. If you don’t find anything here, visit our Gift Guide for even more ideas.
Today’s turntables come in a wide variety of styles and functionality…
Denon DP-450USB Denon turntables are the perfect entry point to analog sound, as they’re fully automatic, come with pre-installed cartridges, and have a built-in phono stage for hook up to any receiver or amp - even ones without phono inputs. The versatile DP-450USB turntable brings a lot to the party. It supports playback of 33-⅓, 45 and 78 rpm to cover all the bases, and the integrated USB-A output allows for one-touch recording of your favorite vinyl albums onto a USB drive as MP3 or WAV files. Play your records on the DP-450USB and record and take them with you to enjoy great Dnon sound wherever you go.
Sonus faber Omnia Speaker + Pro-Ject Carbon EVO TurntableSave $250 Sonus faber Omnia Speaker + Pro-Ject Carbon T1 Phono SB TurntableSave $200 Here’s an easy way to get awesome analog AND streaming sound from just two components. The Sonus faber Omnia is an elegant wireless speaker that employs seven interior drivers and 490 watts of power to deliver thoroughly enveloping 360-degree sound. Built-in dual-band Wi-Fi provides wireless music streaming and setup; supported streaming services include Apple AirPlay 2, Google Chromecast, Spotify Connect and TIDAL Connect — and its Roon Ready. The built-in phono stage makes hooking up any turntable a breeze, and the HDMI ARC (Audio Return Channel) input makes it easy to enhance your television sound, as well.
Both the Pro-Ject Carbon EVO and Carbon T1 Phono SB are hand-crafted from the finest materials possible and come with a factory-mounted cartridge for plug-and-play functionality. Their European styling is the perfect complement to the Omnia’s clean lines, so the whole package will enhance any décor. Order now and save up to $250 on this limited time offer. Watch our video all about this unique pairing.
Technics SL-1500C The SL-1500C features a built-in phono preamp and cartridge, making it easy to use with a wide range of audio equipment. It sports a simple design without unnecessary frills, while retaining the superb operating feel that is a Technics tradition. The technologies in its single-rotor, coreless direct-drive motor are derived from Technics’ top of the line models, while the aluminum die-cast chassis is rigidly integrated with a special material consisting of ABS mixed with glass fiber for a two-layer construction. The tonearm is a static-balance universal S-shape design, another Technics tradition. The high precision bearing uses the same gimbal suspension construction and machined housing as the SL-1200 Series to achieve high initial sensitivity. The SL-1500C comes with an Ortofon 2M Red cartridge and is available in silver and black.
Pro-Ject Metallica Artist Series Turntable Enter Santa Man. Pro-Ject is thrilled to introduce the new special-edition Metallica Artist Series Turntable, designed and handmade in Europe. The Metallica team chose Pro-Ject as their collaborative partner to create a Metallica-themed record player, continuing the brand’s proud tradition of collaborating with artists. Pro-Ject’s design team treated the surface of the new turntable with a mirror-finished metal logo contour to give the player its distinctive look, a bold aesthetic that resonates with the iconic rock band. The S-shaped tonearm comes with a pre-installed Pick it S2 C integrated cartridge and headshell, but also allows for easy cartridge swapping via the detachable assembly. Tracking force, anti-skating and VTA are fully adjustable for fine-tuning, making this limited edition turntable a true audiophile investment.
Victrola Stream Carbon Works with Sonos Turntable Here’s a versatile turntable that can easily be integrated into your Sonos system so you can listen to your records throughout your home. Equipped with a carbon fiber tonearm, advanced aluminum headshell and a premium Ortofon 2M Red cartridge, the Victrola Stream Carbon delivers on both sound quality and aesthetics, as its sleek, clean lines look great anywhere. The Victrola Stream app provides easy setup and connects the turntable wirelessly to your Sonos system in seconds. Once set up, the turntable fully integrates with the Sonos app, and the illuminated control knob provides centralized volume control for your entire Sonos system.
Upgrading the cartridge is the simplest way to upgrade a turntable’s performance. Here are some of our faves.
Goldring E3 A Stereophile Recommended Component, the magazine had this to say about the E3: "Sensibly designed for use by beginners or vinyl fans with minimal hardware experience, the considered design of the E3 provides a sense of clarity and midrange purity with a bass that delights in terms of information and character. In terms of the inherent sound quality from this cartridge, the E3 provides exceptional value for money."
Ortofon 2M Blue The Ortofon 2M Blue moving magnet cartridge is the upgraded version of the Ortofon 2M Red. The main upgrade is the nude elliptical stylus — the diamond stylus is directly attached to the cantilever with no mounting block or shank, resulting in a more accurate and forgiving output. The 2M Blue also features improved frequency range and tracking. The unique exterior design is both visually pleasing and functional with a size and weight that will work with most turntables.
Ortofon SM Black LVB 250 To commemorate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven, Ortofon created the 2M Black LVB 250 Exclusive Model. The flagship 2M Black is widely acknowledged as being one of the best MM cartridges on the market, and the new LVB 250 version improves on this performance by incorporating a Nude Shibata diamond stylus on a Boron cantilever, the combination known from the acclaimed MC Cadenza Black cartridge. The Nude Shibata stylus’s slim, highly polished profile allows an extremely wide contact area to the groove walls and ensures notably detailed reproduction throughout the spectrum, including even the highest frequencies.
Another simple way to improve analog performance.
Rega Fono Mini A2D Phono Preamp Designed to amplify the signal from a moving magnet cartridge to a suitable level for all line level inputs of a receiver or amp, the Fono Mini A2D phono preamplifier offers exceptional performance and incredible value for the money. Its USB connection allows you to easily transfer vinyl to your PC. It features an extruded aluminum case and user-friendly front and back panels for easy set up.
iFi Zen Phono Preamp The ZEN Phono employs premium audio components to implement advanced circuit design which has trickled-down from its ultra-hi-fidelity AMR PH-77 and iFi iPhono siblings. Unlike most phono preamps in this price range, it has its own high-tech clean power supply, which is essential for amplifying the signal without added noise.
Step up your vinyl game by keeping your records clean
Vacuum cleaning your records is the best way to get dirt, dust, and grime out of the grooves and let you hear the music you've been missing.
Record Doctor VI Carbon Fiber Vinyl Record Cleaning Machine The new Record Doctor VI Record Cleaning Machine is the first major upgrade to the original Record Doctor V in the last ten years. This new machine is quieter and cleans better than all previous Record Doctor generations and is packed with performance-enhancing improvements, including cooler, quieter operation, a new Clean Sweep applicator brush, a stain-resistant aluminum top, and a new easy-grip record turner.