Going vinyl: is it worth it?`

Alex Mohr / feature writer>


Recently I fell victim to a great lump sum of cash. Did I file a cash settlement due to asbestos exposure? Nigh. Instead I saved the money I earned through work and pooled it with the money I received from Hannukah.

I had a few dollars to my name, and I had a vision of what I wanted to spend it on. I wanted a turntable and speakers and records of my favorite music. And I wanted it now.

I was sure to research before spending my money. This was going to be quite the investment, and I did not want to waste my money, so I read online about good and bad turntables and speakers and how to handle and store vinyl records.

From the get go I knew I did not want an all-in-one turntable. These were inexpensive outlets to get into vinyl, and they are very popular choices for new collectors. But I did not like the way they looked, and I wanted to be able to connect my phone to a stand-alone speaker so I could play music on Spotify.

All-in-one record players are called this because they house the turntable to play the record, an in-house amplifier to generate power for the speakers, and the speakers themselves. Expensive setups have those three items separated; one must buy a turntable, an amplifier and pre-amplifier, and speakers to listen to records. A great setup can cost, at least, $500.

I wanted to get a decent setup for under $200 so I could still have some money to buy music.

I did my research for a few weeks and I decided to look into the Audio-Technica LP60. This is the cheapest model Audio-Technica sells, and it goes for around $100 for just the turntable, and it has an in-house amplifier so I didn’t have to buy one separately. Though it is more expensive than an all-in-one, it is known to provide better-sounding music, lasts longer, and does not damage or scratch the vinyl record, which are some downsides of purchasing an all-in-one player.

Since I was planning on buying powered speakers with built-in amplifiers, I did not need to buy an amplifier.

I looked online and was thinking about buying bookshelf speakers for $75, but my impatience got to me and I bought a more expensive Vizio television sound bar because it was on sale and right in front of me.

Thanks to sales and an employee discount, I spent around $180 on the setup alone. I spent $180 on something I did not need and something I could not use.

I could not use it because I had not bought any vinyl records yet. Later I bought albums by The 1975, Beach Fossils, Nirvana, and Roger Waters. I think I spent another $100 on music alone. I don’t even like Waters’ standalone music that much, but I got it to look cool.

I have owned it for a month, and though I haven’t bought any records lately, I do actually still listen to music on the record player. I have a simple beginner setup, but I like it because I can put big plastic circles on a square and it spins and makes sound. If I could go back I think I would have not bought the soundbar, but it’s still cool because it has bluetooth for my phone.

Senior Ethan Stacey, who has a very nice setup, has been listening to vinyl records for over a year now. “Purchasing records is worth it If you have select albums that you obsess over. Buying a record of that album and having a really nice quality rip of that just makes sense,” Stacey said.

This is an record player. As you can see, it is on a desk. You can look all you want, but are you hearing? Neigh. Thou cannot hearth thy groovy tunes, boy. Tomato or tomato?

This is an record player. As you can see, it is on a desk. You can look all you want, but are you hearing? Neigh. Thou cannot hearth thy groovy tunes, boy. Tomato or tomato?

However, senior Jared Reed thinks vinyl record players are stupid. “It’s just as easy and even cheaper to play music off of your phone,” Reed said.

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