The best turntables of 2023

By in Features





Only the best for your beloved records.

The vinyl surge at the beginning of this decade has kept its momentum, with a year-on-year surge of 13.2% in vinyl sales for the first nine months of 2023. Building on the increased sales from 2020 to 2022, vinyl is here to stay.

In step with the ongoing vinyl revolution, manufacturers are upping their efforts to produce feature-rich turntables that align with contemporary trends. Notably, high-quality Bluetooth and seamless streaming capabilities, once exclusive to premium models, have become standard features available across price points.

As environmental consciousness rises, there has been an increase in upcycled and eco-friendly turntable options. This shift aligns with the growing demand for sustainable choices, allowing consumers to enjoy their music while minimizing their ecological footprint.

However, there is a simultaneous flood of low-priced ‘plug-and-play’ suitcase-style turntables. While these all-in-one units may seem convenient, affordable, and accessible, they come with a notable caveat—the pre-installed needles are subpar and can potentially damage your records.

Despite their appealing luggage-inspired design and built-in speakers, these decks compromise the quality of the listening experience and risk rendering your records unlistenable. Caution is advised.

Whether you are a vinyl novice, a seasoned audiophile, or someone with a history of turntable appreciation, there are a plethora of fresh, modern designs for all preferences. Below, we highlight three standout turntables from 2023.

Rega Planar 1 ECO

Price: £199
Pros: Budget-friendly, eco-friendly funk, lifetime warranty assurance
Cons: Cosmetic quirks, limited availability

Verdict: Rega’s Green Grade turntable is a groovy, eco-friendly twist in the world of record players. Embracing imperfections with flair, these budget-friendly decks deliver top-notch performance and come with a lifetime warranty.

Rega’s Green Grade turntable brings a playful vibe to the audio scene, turning rejected parts into budget-friendly gems. The Planar 1 Eco Deck combines quirky components for a unique aesthetic. Despite cosmetic quirks, these eco-conscious decks come with a lifetime warranty, assuring performance. Limited availability adds an element of surprise to each deck, making it a groovy choice for those who appreciate a touch of whimsy in their vinyl adventures.

Victrola Stream Onyx

Price: £500
Sonos streaming, analogue and digital duo capabilities, clear sound quality
Cons: Flimsy dust cover, Sonos exclusivity

Verdict: The Victrola Stream Onyx is a fun fusion of analogue charm and digital convenience, serenading both vinyl aficionados and Sonos enthusiasts.

Victrola’s Stream Onyx strikes a delightful chord, blending vinyl with the technology of Sonos streaming. Boasting both analogue and digital versatility, it offers an immersive experience and crystal-clear sound quality. While the dust cover may be on the lighter side and the Sonos exclusivity could give pause, its $600 price tag positions it as a premium choice for those already immersed in the Sonos ecosystem. For others, the Stream Onyx offers a whimsical dance between classic and modern, transforming music into a delightful fusion of analogue warmth and digital convenience.

Rega Naia

Price: £12,000
Pros:  Innovative design legacy, high-quality construction, RB titanium tonearm custom power supply, advanced drive belt
Cons: N/A

Verdict: Rega’s Naia turntable, a celebration of its 50th year, impresses with its innovative design, advanced materials, and meticulous construction. While the high price may deter some, the Naia offers audiophiles a top-tier experience with its high-quality components and precision engineering.

Rega’s Naia turntable, marking the company’s 50th anniversary, is a testament to innovation in audio design. With a robust construction featuring Graphene-impregnated carbon fibre and ZTA, the Naia delivers enhanced rigidity and reduced wear risk. The RB Titanium tonearm ensures precise movement, while the optional Aphelion 2 cartridge and custom power supply contribute to an unparalleled audio experience. Despite the premium price, audiophiles seeking top-tier performance and craftsmanship will find the Rega Naia a worthy investment in the pursuit of exceptional sound quality.

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