Vinyl record sales have been enjoying a steady growth for the last few years, with the 12-inch format returning to many online and high street music stores to meet demand. Turntables are also on sale again, and if you’re looking to mix traditional hi-fi goodness with modern streaming technology – but can’t afford to splash out a six and a half grand on a McIntosh – Audio Technica has launched a wallet-friendly Bluetooth-enabled version of its 120X-USB spinner.
Taking design cues from a certain DJ favorite from Technics, the LP120XBT-USB is a direct-drive turntable that spins the platter at 33.3, 45 and 78 RPM and can be cabled up to a living room hi-fi system, but can also stream to wireless headphones, portable speakers and so on over Bluetooth 5.0, with aptX codec support for high quality playback.
This gives listeners the freedom to moonwalk around the house without tripping over headphone cables, wirelessly send tunes from the living room to the kitchen, or step out into the garden and take the music with them – providing they stay within range.
Users won’t need to buy a separate phono pre-amp when connecting the turntable to a living room hi-fi setup, as the 120XBT-USB has its own. The USB output also allows for hooking up to a computer or laptop to convert vinyl records into digital audio files.
Elsewhere, the turntable comes supplied with an AT-HS6 universal headshell and AT-VM95E dual moving magnet phono cartridge for the end of the S-shaped tonearm, which features hydraulically-damped lift control, adjustable tracking force and dynamic anti-skating.
The die-cast aluminum platter has a stroboscopic speed indicator, variable pitch control and damped base construction. There’s an external power supply to reduce electrical noise, and a removable light is also included to help with after dark cueing.
The AT-LP120XBT-USB turntable is available now for US$299. If that’s still too steep for your budget, the cleaner lines of the cheaper – and also Bluetooth-enabled – PS-LX310BT belt-drive model from Sony might hit the right note.
Product page: Audio Technica LP120XBT-USB
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