5 Best Portable Turntables

Whether you are new to recording collecting or just pulled your old crates of vinyl out of storage, a portable turntable can be a great way to enjoy your LPs without shelling out thousands of dollars for cumbersome equipment. As a bonus, you can take the warmth of analog sounds with you wherever you go.

There are many options for portable turntables on the market, which is why you should consider several different factors before purchasing a record player. Asking the right questions will ensure countless hours of musical enjoyment.

Considerations for Portable Turntables

Not all turntables are created equally. Before buying a record player, prioritize the specifications that ensure your purchase suits your listening needs.

Music is a gift you give to yourself. The last thing you want is a record player that gathers dust in the corner. Take these qualities into consideration when comparing portable turntables for optimum listening enjoyment.

Portability

Portability is the most obvious consideration – it’s right in the name. Many music fans want to experience the warmth of vinyl in the warmth of the sun. The best portable turntables should be easy to transport. For those on the go, the ease of traveling with the record player will be the number one factor in determining the best turntable.

Functionality

Even with a retro form of technology like vinyl, there are continual innovations in the equipment used to play it. Many portable turntables now have functionality that exceeds merely playing a record.

Some portable record players come equipped with Bluetooth capabilities, allowing smartphones to play through them. Others have USB hookups, allowing users to rip vinyl straight to their laptops. For listeners looking for an all-in-one machine, functionality is essential.

Looks

You have great taste in music, and your portable turntable should show this off in style. There is no shortage of vintage-looking turntables to tote around to your next house party or picnic. From their cool colors to suitcase exteriors, one of the most fun things about portable turntables is creative companies have packaged them.

Sound Quality

Many parts of a turntable go into its sound quality, from the stylus to the tonearm to the speakers. Everything on a record player works toward making the sound that you hear. Though portable record players will never have the same audiophile qualities as bulkier, more expensive units, you can still get good sound from them.

If you love vinyl, you probably have at least some audiophile tendencies. Be sure to consider the turntable sound quality when making your purchase.

5 Best Portable Turntables

Now that we have addressed several essential components to a portable turntable, we can get to the fun part: looking at the best record players out there. After considering all the key factors listed above, we have compiled a list of the 5 best portable turntables.

Crosley Voyager

Crosley has become a household name in turntables over the years. The company was one of the first to start reproducing vintage-inspired portable turntables. Crosley is known for its retro looks and compact bodies, and its Voyager model is no different.

The Voyager is light enough to take on the go but has enough audio options to make it a perfectly capable turntable for a small room or study. The Voyager can suit any occasion with its Bluetooth, RCA, and auxiliary outputs.

Pros

  • Bluetooth in for smartphones and out for Bluetooth capable speakers
  • RCA output allows connection to stereo speakers
  • Pitch control allows for fine-tuning sound

Cons

  • Light tonearm can cause skipping
  • No auto-return feature on the arm

Victrola Revolution GO

Victrola has been around since 1906, so they know a thing or two about turntables. Their Revolution GO model is the most portable on our list, so if you want a record player to run around town with, look no further.

With its incredible portability, the Revolution GO maintains a high sound quality. Between its Audio Technica cartridge, Bluetooth functionality, and RCA outputs, this shoulder bag of a turntable still packs a punch.

Pros

  • Built-in rechargeable battery
  • Handle and removable guitar strap
  • Bluetooth in for smartphones and out for Bluetooth capable speakers

Cons

  • Utilitarian design lacks style
  • No auxiliary input

VOKSUN

The Voksun should be top of the list for those that want a stylish and modern take on a portable turntable. The rounded-off wood design is a perfect compliment for taking your vinyl out into nature or sharing your record collection with friends at a barbeque.

The VOKSUN is the only player on our list to include AM/FM radio functions, allowing you to pick up locally broadcast ball games or your favorite local radio station. Coupled with its Bluetooth receiver, this model really can function as an all-in-one device.

Pros

  • Beautiful wood design
  • AM/FM radio
  • RCA stereo outputs

Cons

  • No cover

Numark PT01 USB

Numark has been the industry standard for DJs for four decades. From the disco-dominated 70s to the hip-hop of the modern era, Numark has been the gear that provided the soundtrack. It is no surprise then that their portable PT01 USB model has some of the best sound available on the market.

Do not be fooled by the PT01’s compact and light body – this turntable has an archival bent for serious vinyl lovers. The only model on our list to feature a USB port, this Numark can link up with a PC or laptop and allow listeners to rip their vinyl collection straight to their computer. For serious collectors, this means that out-of-print or never digitally released albums can now be stored and shared via their computers.

Pros

  • USB function to rip vinyl to computer
  • Pitch control function
  • Great sound

Cons

  • No Bluetooth
  • Utilitarian design lacks style

Audio Technica AT-LP60XBT

With Audio Technica’s AT-LP60XBT we have reached the mountaintop of sound for a portable turntable. The Bluetooth chip is of superior quality, allowing for audiophile-level sound when paired with a nice soundbar or Bluetooth speakers. The Audio Technica cartridge provides great sound, is better for your vinyl, and allows for an upgrade if you decide to get into the wide world of stylus upgrades.

Though there is less all-in-one functionality with the AT-LP60XBT, serious vinyl addicts will love the functionality of a tabletop record player without all the cumbersome equipment. This model is less for taking to the beach and more for taking to a friend’s house for serious listening. With a phonograph output, this is a turntable that could become an entry point into growing your sound system.

Pros

  • Great sound
  • A turntable that can grow with your interest in audio equipment
  • Big enough that the record does not hang over the sides during play

Cons

  • No built-in speaker
  • No convenient handle or carrying system

Conclusion

As the world becomes increasingly digital, many music lovers are discovering the warmth and tangibility of vinyl. There are few pleasures in life like dropping the needle on a record and hearing the resulting sound — a physical connection between you and the music. It’s a musical reminder of how everything is connected.

Whether you have decades of LPs on a forgotten shelf or you just started buying the newest hits on 180 gram colored wax, a portable turntable is a great way to enjoy your collection. Take our tips into account, and you’ll be able to get into the groove no matter where life takes you.