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Best Portable Turntables

Vinyl has withstood the test of time in the world of sound recording, boasting pleasant idiosyncrasies and a significantly longer lifespan than tape solutions.

Undoubtedly, the best portable record player should combine great sound with a compact design, and some of the decent yet budget-friendly options can offer such features.

However, to make an informed choice, it’s important to compare the capabilities of various devices. As not every user is an audiophile or well-versed in turntable technicalities, I’ve examined numerous portable record players and handpicked the most compelling models. My review encompasses a diverse range of brands and price points, helping you make the right decision. So, without further ado, let’s get started!

Our pick
Crosley Cruiser Deluxe
Crosley Cruiser Deluxe
Best portable turntable
With pitch control, built-in speakers and a Bluetooth receiver, the Cruiser is ready to jam vinyl or your digital music. Read the full review.

Portable turntables comparison table

Name Speeds, RPM Speakers Bluetooth USB AUX RCA Review
Crosley Cruiser Deluxe best overall 33 1/3, 45, 78 yes yes yes yes yes Review
Victrola VSC-550BT also a great choice 33 1/3, 45, 78 yes yes no yes yes Review
WOCKODER KD-3011BL budget 33 1/3, 45, 78 yes no no yes yes Review

Best portable record player reviews

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Crosley Cruiser Deluxe – best overall

Crosley Cruiser Deluxe features

I’ll start with my favorite, the Cruiser Deluxe from Crosley. This American company is one of the world’s most popular manufacturers of affordable vinyl turntables. Their models have always been known for their original and stylish design, as well as their fairly high quality. So let’s move on to the appearance of the Cruiser Deluxe.

The form factor here is typical for the fifties but really rare today: it is a white suitcase with a specific texture – here is the imitation of a noble skin. The design is completed with nickel-plated speakers, which are compact but powerful. The inner part is classical matte plastic that can be polished through time. It looks really stylish and ergonomic.

This portable record player with built-in speakers offers essential functions for an enjoyable listening experience. It supports 33 1/3, 45, and 78 RPM playback speeds to accommodate a variety of vinyl records. Furthermore, a universal USB port accommodates USB drives and other peripherals. A notable feature of this model is its wireless music playback via Bluetooth, utilizing version 4 of the module for a working distance of at least 10 meters. The Cruiser Deluxe also connects to sound sources with a cable and channels audio to external speaker systems.

Crosley Cruiser Deluxe sound

Equipped with a Crosley NP6 replaceable cartridge, the tonearm allows for easy swapping via the company’s website if needed. The needle features ceramic construction and a sapphire tip.

Now let’s talk about the main thing – the sound. During playback, the sound is emitted by two electrodynamics, both are three inches in diameter, and each has a built-in amplifier with 2 watts of power. As a result, the sound from the players is quite clear, detailed, and deep. While this model may lack the smoothness and vibrancy found in premium options, it still captures the enchanting essence of analog sound.

The Cruiser Deluxe is a great example of getting a quality product for reasonable money. It is as good as (or even better than) the more expensive Victrola VSC-550BT, but it costs less. The Cruiser Deluxe is flawlessly made, interesting to look at, and it’s undoubtedly the best sounding portable record player on my list.

Key specs

  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Speakers: yes.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: yes.
  • AUX in.: yes.
  • RCA out.: yes.
  • Headphone jack: yes.

Pros

  • Interchangeable proprietary cartridge.
  • Bluetooth capability.
  • High-quality, tight and dynamic sound.
  • 3 speed modes.

Cons

  • No extra needle.
  • No downforce adjustment.

Victrola VSC-550BT – also a great choice

Victrola VSC-550BT features

Victrola VSC-550BT is a compact record player that brings a modern touch to the vintage suitcase-style design. I was instantly drawn to its unique aesthetic, plus, it offers an ideal blend of retro charm and contemporary functionality.

This model provides three-speed options (33 1/3, 45, and 78 rpm), catering to various vinyl records in my collection. I am pleased with its sound quality, which is further enhanced by sound-isolating feet that minimize vibration, ensuring a rich and clear listening experience. It seamlessly fits into any space, be it a living room, bedroom, or office.

Victrola VSC-550BT sound

One of the standout features of the VSC-550BT is its portability. The vintage suitcase design, coupled with an easy carry handle will allow you to enjoy your favorite tunes wherever you want. As a vinyl lover, I truly appreciate the flexibility this Victrola model provides.

In terms of connectivity, the table excels with its expanded options. You can effortlessly stream music from your smartphone through the built-in Bluetooth speakers or connect external speakers via the stereo RCA outputs for an even more immersive experience. The Line input comes in handy for non-Bluetooth devices like a CD player, and the headphone jack is perfect for personal listening sessions.

With its decent sound quality and exquisite craftsmanship, this record player has been an absolute delight, and I’m confident it will help create lasting musical memories for anyone who gives it a spin.

Key specs

  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Speakers: yes.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: no.
  • AUX in.: yes.
  • RCA out.: yes.
  • Headphone jack: yes.

Pros

  • Nice combination of retro appearance with the convenience of modern technology.
  • Can play pretty loud.
  • Easy to set up.
  • Comes in various vibrant colors.

Cons

  • Can’t connect to external speakers.
  • Manual needle – be gentle when using it.

WOCKODER KD-3011BL – best budget

WOCKODER KD-3011BL features

WOCKODER KD-3011BL is another portable LP player that blends modern features with a classic retro design. It adds a touch of nostalgia to any space while offering the convenience of today’s technology.

The KD-3011BL offers three speeds (33, 45, and 78 RPM), allowing you to play 7″, 10″, and 12″ vinyl records. This versatile turntable ensures that your entire vinyl collection, from vintage classics to modern releases, can be enjoyed without any hassle.

I definitely love its extensive range of connectivity options. The built-in Bluetooth enables wireless streaming from the phone, while the SD and USB play functions add even more versatility.

WOCKODER KD-3011BL sound

For those seeking additional audio choices, the KD-3011BL is equipped with a headphone jack output, a 3.5mm AUX-in, and RCA line out, meaning you can connect external speakers for a more immersive experience.

The sound quality has exceeded my expectations – the built-in speakers deliver clear sound even at high volumes. Overall, this TT’s impressive audio performance makes it a fantastic addition to any music lover’s collection.

WOCKODER KD-3011BL is the finest budget portable record player available in today’s market. It features a remarkable blend of style, functionality, convenience, and an affordable price tag. If those are features you are looking for, you may end your search here.

Key specs

  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Speakers: yes.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: yes.
  • AUX in.: yes.
  • RCA out.: yes.
  • Headphone jack: yes.

Pros

  • Well-built and sturdy.
  • Looks nice.
  • Comes with an extra needle.
  • A crisp and refreshing sound.

Cons

  • Bluetooth sound is good but not loud enough.
  • A power cord is a bit short.
  • Is a bit heavy.

Byron Statics

Byron Statics features

The Byron Statics is a stylish, portable vinyl player with three speeds (33, 45, and 78 RPM) – you can use it at home or on the go to listen to your favorite albums from anywhere you want. The turntable is lightweight, so it’s perfect for travelers; plus, it comes in a beautiful faux leather case that makes it easy to transport between parties. It also has a power indicator light, so there’s never an embarrassing moment of running out of energy mid-party.

You’ll love the unit’s sound quality – I listened to Pink Floyd and La Traviata at full volume, and this little beauty handled them well without any distortion! Actually, the Statics comes with built-in speakers, but you can also hook it up to external speakers if you need a bigger sound. Finally, this model has an extra needle and a 9V 800mA DC adapter – just in case you want to keep the music going all night long.

Byron Statics sound

Byron Statics is a delightful fusion of style, portability, and impressive sound quality. With its lightweight design and stunning faux leather case, this suitcase record player is an ideal companion for music enthusiasts who love to bring their favorite tunes along, whether at home or while traveling.

Key specs

  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Speakers: yes.
  • Bluetooth: no.
  • USB: no.
  • AUX in.: yes.
  • RCA out.: yes.
  • Headphone jack: yes.

Udreamer UD001

Udreamer UD001 features

Udreamer UD001 is another great portable record player for those who want to enjoy their vinyl records on the go. This model can boast useful, up-to-date features – Bluetooth input and USB connectivity, allowing you to connect it to your phone or computer. It also has built-in stereo speakers for better sound, or you can connect bigger speakers via the RCA cable if you need louder sound.

Udreamer UD001 sound

This player supports 3 listening speeds (33-1/3, 45, and 78 RPM) and 3 sizes of records (7, 10, and 12 inches). In addition, its base is equipped with a spring and belt-driven design to absorb vibrations, significantly improving sound quality.

The player looks terrific – it’s made of vintage wooden material, so you can easily place it anywhere in your home or office without feeling like it’s an eyesore. What I like the most about this model is that it combines a classic, nostalgic design with 100% modern features. And last but not least, the UD001 also includes a removable dust cover to help protect its parts and increase its life span.

Udreamer UD001 is a good portable record player that brings the classic sound of vinyl to life. It looks fantastic, sounds crisp, and doesn’t muffle anything. Great buy for the price!

Key specs

  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Speakers: yes.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: yes.
  • AUX in.: yes.
  • RCA out.: yes.
  • Headphone jack: yes.

Pros

  • Beautiful retro design.
  • Decent audio – even secondhand LPs sound great.
  • Gets pretty loud.
  • Totally user-friendly – suitable for teens and elderly.

Cons

  • The audio quality may suffer when playing via Bluetooth.
  • Requires additional weight on the needle.

Victrola V50-200

Victrola V50-200 features

You may ask me why I like Victrola V50-200 even though it’s almost twice pricier as other models on my list. That’s because it offers a chic, eye-catching retro design and is packed with an array of features that will delight music enthusiasts.

This belt-driven, 3-speed system is designed to play LPs at 33 1/3, 45, and 78 RPM, accommodating various vinyl formats. In addition to its vinyl capabilities, the versatile V50-200 includes a built-in CD player, stereo speakers, and an AM/FM radio with an illuminated tuner. The 3.5mm aux-in and headphone output enable connectivity with non-Bluetooth devices, while the USB recording feature and user-friendly software allow vinyl-to-MP3 conversion.

Victrola V50-200 sound

One drawback of the V50-200 is the inclusion of a flimsy plastic adapter and the lack of a mat, which can affect sound quality and record rotation. However, after adding a mat and a sturdier adapter, the turntable’s performance improved significantly.

Overall, Victrola V50-200, with its stylish appearance, versatility, and ease of setup & use, is an excellent choice for beginners seeking a blend of modern functionality and distinctive style.

Key specs

  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Speakers: yes.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: no.
  • AUX in.: yes.
  • RCA out.: no.
  • Headphone jack: yes.

Pros

  • The CD player is particularly impressive, providing excellent playback even on scratched discs.
  • Easy-to-use interface with satisfyingly toned buttons.
  • Luminous LED display.
  • Available in multiple, eye-catching hues.

Cons

  • To have better sound, you might need to buy a mat and a thicker adaptor.
  • Modest build quality – feels fragile.
Related article – all in one record player reviews.

Buyers guide

To select a portable record player that will meet your needs, look for the following features:

Built-in speakers

Built-in speakers are an important feature for the best portable record players, as they offer instant, hassle-free listening experiences. They eliminate the need for additional equipment, making these turntables more compact and convenient to use. With built-in speakers, music enthusiasts can effortlessly enjoy their favorite vinyl records anytime, anywhere.

RCA outputs

A classical phono connector is a standard of the industry. It should be at every decent portable LP player – so you can add big peripheric components for the sound quality.

Other inputs and outputs

The power capacity of even expensive portable turntables is limited. So the answer here would be: until the sound is loud and clear – pick a player with a maximum number of ports.

Bluetooth capability

Not so important, but if you have a really good autonomous BT speaker – it would be extremely helpful. Also, the market nowadays is full of cheap and good BT microphones.

Tonearm, cartridge, and stylus

Here we have a classical “cheap or removing” dilemma. Portable turntables have an unmounted cartridge and a little choice of styluses. The cheapest versions of the LP players always have a built-in cartridge. Also, always check a tonearm after buying a turntable – it should have smooth moves.

Speed

A high-quality portable record player should offer three-speed options: 33 1/3, 45, and 78 RPM. These speeds cater to various vinyl record formats, ensuring compatibility with your entire collection. Such versatility enables music lovers to enjoy classic, modern, and rare vinyl records alike.

tonearm, cartridge, and stylus

Disadvantages of a portable turntable and whether it can damage your vinyl

Now, let’s explore the potential drawbacks of portable turntables, and learn whether these compact players could affect your cherished record collection.

Some mechanical issues

While portable turntables provide a convenient way to enjoy your favorite vinyl records, they may come with some mechanical issues. Here are a few common concerns:

Lower-quality components: Due to the compact nature of these devices, some manufacturers may use inferior materials or components, which could lead to reduced performance or durability.

Stability: Portable record players often sacrifice stability for portability. The lightweight design may make them prone to vibrations, affecting the sound quality and, in some cases, potentially causing damage to your vinyl records.

Built-in speakers: While built-in speakers are convenient, they may not deliver the same audio quality as dedicated external speakers. Additionally, the close proximity of speakers to the turntable can introduce unwanted vibrations, impacting the listening experience.

Tracking force: The stylus tracking force on some portable turntables may be heavier than on higher-end models, potentially leading to increased wear on your vinyl records over time.

Tonearm and cartridge quality: Some models may feature less sophisticated tonearms and cartridges, which could affect the sound quality and, in extreme cases, cause damage to your vinyl records.

Before making a purchase, do weigh the convenience of a vintage portable record player against these potential issues.

FAQ

Do portable record players ruin records?

Portable record players do not necessarily ruin records, but lower-quality models with heavier tracking force, poor tonearm, or cartridge design might cause increased wear on your vinyl over time. To minimize potential damage, choose a high-quality portable turntable with proper components and maintain your records in good condition.

Do Crosley turntables ruin records?

Crosley turntables are not known to damage records but they often produce less than ideal sound quality. To reduce wear on your vinyl you can buy a slipmat (a circular piece of material that fits under the record) or create your own by drawing circles onto a mouse pad.

Do portable record players need to be plugged in?

Some portable record players require a power source and need to be plugged in, while others feature built-in rechargeable batteries, allowing for cordless use. To enjoy your portable turntable without being tethered to an outlet, look for models with battery-operated functionality or a long-lasting rechargeable battery.

What records work best with a portable player?

Portable players typically work well with most vinyl records, but they often excel with standard 33 1/3 and 45 RPM records, which are more common and less fragile. To ensure the finest performance, choose a model with multiple speed options and compatibility with 7″, 10″, and 12″ records.

What kind of needle can I use on my portable record player?

The type of needle you should use on your portable record player depends on the specific model and cartridge it has. It’s essential to consult the manufacturer’s guidelines or user manual for compatible stylus replacements. Using a compatible, high-quality needle will ensure optimal sound quality and prevent potential damage to your vinyl records.

Do turntables use a lot of electricity?

No. If you’re using a portable turntable with batteries, then the electrical consumption will depend solely on how often you turn it on and off. The use of a power cord might seem more wasteful, but the length of the cord only has a negligible effect on energy consumption.

How do you skip a song on vinyl?

To skip a song on vinyl, you must manually pick up the needle from the record and put it back down in a different location.

How loud can I play my portable record player?

It depends on your record player. Most battery-powered players produce no more than 60 decibels at full volume, which is roughly the same amount of noise produced by a running refrigerator.
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