Buying a Vertical Record Player- Some Advice

This Article for you who have not played a vertical vinyl record player before or for you who have just found out that you want to be able to play your records again but do not have a vinyl record player

Here you will get advice on what to look for and information on what is important on a turntable so that you can more easily find a vertical record player that suits you. 

A few important facts for you who want to know in detail about what to think about when you buy the best vertical record player. 

A vertical record player basically consists of 5 important parts – a motor that rotates a turntable and a tonearm that holds the pickup. Everything is mounted in a terminal block or box of some kind.

1. Engine and drive:

There are now mainly two different drive systems – direct drive and belt drive. In the past, mid-wheel drive was also common – i.e. a rubber wheel transmits the rotation from the motor to the turntable.

Before you buy it, make sure that the player maintains the correct speed and does not sway. The easiest way to do this is with the help of a stroboscope.

Advantages are few moving parts because the turntable is basically part of the engine and quick start. Some audiophiles believe that the drive system provides a special coloration of the sound. Often there are very good players that you are welcome to take a closer look at. 

The old synchronous motors that were common in the vintage vertical record player, usually last forever if they get a little oil from time to time. They usually go directly to the mains voltage.

2. Plate and plate stock:  

The important thing is that the disc rotates at a steady speed and that there is not a lot of engine or bearing noise in the LP. This otherwise gives rise to background rumble – so-called rumble.

Check that the disc can rotate without a “notch” if you disconnect the belt or other drive. When you speed up the plate with your hand, it should be able to spin evenly and nicely, preferably for several minutes. There must be absolutely no grinding sound or it can be seen that from time to time it slows down unprovoked. This usually means that the center bearing of the plate is damaged. Usually, it is not worth renovating.

3. Tonearm: 

The only task of a tonearm is to keep the pickup in place on the track and to give it the opportunity to follow the track without any problems. When you look at a track on an LP, you realize that the vibrations that the pickup has to handle are very small– well under a millimeter. If the pickup is not kept completely still, the vibrations mix the music signal. 

Now that you know this, you easily realize that the tonearm must be able to move very easily in all holes and that there must be no play in any direction.

So feel that the tonearm is agile and stable. Also, make sure that it is possible to adjust the needle pressure and any anti-skating. When you compare a few different tonearms, you realize that there are big differences. In fact, you can almost look at the tonearm if it is lavish and good or cheap and simple.

4. Pickup:

In most cases, you can change the pickup so it is normally not so important when buying second-hand. Make sure that it is easy to change the pick on the player – the most common mounts are ½ -inch mount and T4P. 

If you are also going to play 78-revs, you need a needle tip that is intended for the wider track on the stone cakes. So check that you can get a pickup that has needles for 78s for the player you are thinking of it is not enough that there is a 78-speed on the player!

If you are also going to play 78-revs, you need a needle tip that is intended for the wider track on the stone cakes. So check that you can get a pickup that has needles for 78s for the player you are thinking of – it is not enough that there is a 78-speed on the player!

5. Drawer/terminal block 

It is perfectly OK with suspension – there are many different types of suspension, which one chooses is very much a matter of taste. The important thing is that the tonearm is kept in place in relation to the plate and that the box does not rattle.