It’s an easy world with an automatic turntable. You simply slip on your favourite LP and hit the start button, the turntable does the rest. Simplicity equals elegance and elegance offers convenience, and there’s hardly a more convenient method of playing records than through an automatic turntable. It does the work while you do whatever the hell you want. Now, this equation is often met with the same old audiophile complaints, additional moving mechanical parts equal additional vibrations, which in turn affect audio quality. And in a perfect world this is perfectly true. But at five hundred odd dollary-doos for a turntable those affects are marginal at best, and what the audiophiles often miss are the aesthetic affects of the listening experience. From LP cover art to the careful arrangement of your home set up, playing vinyl is a physical medium. It’s not designed to hide in the background like a lot of digital offerings. It’s meant to be present, at the forefront of the listener’s experience. The method by which we listen to our music has a very tangible affect on the pleasure of that experience; therefore, the benefits of an automatic setup - if you’re so inclined - have the potential to counter any audiophile detractions.
It’s a pretty simple decision for many to choose an automatic turntable. Convenience is king. You slap down a record and press play; that’s it! Hard to argue with, really. And I know what you’re thinking, it sounds like the lazy man’s turntable. I get it. But why exactly is that such a bad thing? None of us are immune to those late night LP sessions, drunk behind the wheel of our own turntables and passed out before we’ve had time to raise the tonearm from Jimmy Page’s 127sec mind bending blues solo on Tea For One, closing track from Zeppelin’s seventh album, Presence. Who the hell wants to sit up, straight, waiting around for that? I sure as shit don’t! Neither should you. And while the jury is still out (meaning the ongoing ping pong audiophile forum arguments) on exactly how bad that can be for your stylus, I think we can all agree it’s better to err on the side of caution here. So if flippin’ records without the frustration of cueing your stylus is something that speaks to you it might be time to look at an Automatic Record Player