If you’re a vinyl enthusiast, keeping your turntable in good condition is key to preserving your records and getting the best sound quality possible. The auto-stop function is one important feature to look for when purchasing or upgrading a turntable.

This article will explain the auto stop feature, how it works, and why you might want to consider adding it to your setup.

What is the auto-stop feature?

The auto stop feature is a safety feature typically found on higher-end turntables. It is a function that automatically stops the platter from spinning once the tonearm has been lifted off the record. It prevents the needle from skipping or bouncing around, damaging your records and your stylus.

How does the auto-stop work?

Advantages of the auto stop function

On the back of the turntable is a switch that must be turned on for the auto-stop function to work. Once the switch is turned on, a sensor is activated that will detect when the tonearm has been lifted off of the record. When the sensor detects that the tonearm has been lifted, it will signal the motor to stop the platter from spinning.

After the record is over, it will take about 30 seconds or ten rotations for the platter to stop.
If the auto-stop doesn’t work, it may be that the record itself is to blame. Depending on the label’s size and how the run-out groove is designed, the stylus might not move far enough toward the spindle to trigger the auto-stop function. The best way to test this is by playing different records from different artists. You will be able to see how long the record plays. But you may find that it stops playing too early on some records.

Some records have grooves cut closer to the center of the record, while others have grooves cut further from the center.

The auto-stop function of the turntable is designed to stop playback when the record gets close to the center of the spindle. If a record is cut closer to the label than this, it might slow down and stop before the song’s end.

Sometimes you might hear a slight slowdown when the tonearm passes the trigger for auto-stop. This distance should work with most records. However, if most of the records you play have this issue, you might need to disable auto-stop.

Advantages of the auto-stop function

One advantage of the auto-stop function is that it helps preserve your records. If the tonearm is lifted off the record while it is still spinning, the needle can skip and bounce around, damaging both the record and the stylus.

Another advantage of the auto-stop function is that it can help prevent accidents. For example, if you accidentally bump the table or knock over the tonearm, the auto-stop function will ensure that the platter stops spinning and that the needle is not damaged.

The auto-stop function can also be helpful if you have young children or pets in the house. If they bump into the turntable, the auto-stop function will keep the platter from spinning and prevent the needle from being damaged.

It is a great middle-ground for those who want the safety of an automatic stop function without the expense of a fully automatic turntable.

What is the auto stop feature

Disadvantages of the auto-stop function

There are a few potential disadvantages to the auto-stop function.

First, it can be triggered by something other than the tonearm lifted off the record. For example, if you bump the table or move the turntable, the sensor might be activated, and the motor will stop the platter from spinning.

Second, the auto-stop function might not work with all records. Depending on the label’s size and the run-out groove’s design, the stylus might not move far enough toward the spindle to trigger the auto-stop function.

Last, some people find that the auto-stop function can cause a slight slowdown in the music when the tonearm passes the trigger point. You might need to disable the auto-stop function if this is a problem.

So, is auto-stop required?

The answer to this question depends on your personal preferences. For example, if you want the safety of an automatic stop function but don’t want to pay for a fully automatic turntable, the auto-stop function is a great middle-ground. However, if you find that the auto-stop function is triggered too easily or doesn’t work with all of your records, you might want to disable it.