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Vinyl Records and Turntables: Your Guide to Buying Online

Vinyl has always offered a fuller, better quality hearing experience.

Vinyl’s analog format doesn’t compromise on sound-depth and volume quality as compared to a compressed mp3 file. When music is stored and broadcast in a compressed format, details are lost and quality is compromised no matter how good your speakers are. Orchestras, Jazz, Rock, House, and Techno, all sound a universe apart on vinyl. It’s a true experience that makes audiophiles listen to nothing else.

Sound quality aside, the larger format feels a lot more substantial. Gripping the disc and lowering the needle is an interactive gesture that is satisfying and builds on anticipation. Vinyl is also beautiful to look at. Cover designs and artwork inserts give it an aesthetic allure that CDs and modern music streaming could never replace. There’s an entire industry of people purchasing, collecting, and reselling vinyl, because it keeps its purchase value, or even overwhelmingly appreciates in value.

Here’s a roundup of the best online stores in the U.S. to buy vinyl. It’s discount season, so score sweet deals off new or second hand records, audio accessories and amazingly affordable turntable equipment. Vinyl isn’t just music. It’s an experience. And one that’s worth paying for.

Turntable Lab

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Turntable Lab 

New to vinyl? Turntable Lab has a got a Beginner’s Guide page to help you familiarize with your new audio equipment, along with great setup and care instructions. Ultimately this site tops my recommendation list for user information and new contemporary releases.

The record selection is extremely up to date, proving those who think vinyl is for old grooves wrong. Everything Turntable Lab dishes out, including the equipment is incredibly driven on new technology. The site look great, undeniably appealing to a younger crowd who are just starting on the vinyl experience.

At it’s core, however Turntable Lab admits to being more of a “DJ’s store” so it caters really well to those who are looking to expand beyond listening into more interactive measures with their records. Lots of tutorials and guides in this site for that #TTLSETUP

Flume -Skin Limited Edition 180g colored vinyl USD$32.95
Audio -Technica  LP60 Automatic Turntable USD$99.95

The ATPL60 is a great entry level listening turntable. It comes with everything you need out of the box including the cartridge and a built-in preamp. Plug it into your stereo system, computer, or powered speakers (with the included cables) and it’s ready to go. Operationally, the ATPL60 is simple to use. You can manually place the tonearm on the record or use the convenient start/stop buttons. In addition, when the record is done playing on one side, the tonearm will automatically go back to the ready position. In terms of quality, the ATLP60 is a step above most turntables (in sound quality and build) at this price range.

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Audio-Technica LP60Turntable + Audioengine A2 + Speaker Package Setup USD$309.00

This is a special Lab-configured bundle you can’t get anywhere else, available in a few other color combos. Click on here to get to know the details. Free shipping above $99 within the U.S.

RPM 1 Carbon Turntable, $499


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Insound’s discounts are amazing. The music selection is relatively pared down but they offer great basics to start your collection.

Crosley CR8005A Cruiser Turntable USD$59.99 after discount

Unit Weight: 5.5 lbs

The Crosley Cruiser three-speed portable turntable with built-in stereo speakers so you can listen to your music without having to connect it to a speaker system. Constructed of wood and bound in a leatherette material, the briefcase- styled record player is lightweight and easily transported. Cruise over to a friend’s house and experience vinyl’s superior sound together.

Calvin Harris -Motion album LP  USD$17.99 after discount on Insound

Amoeba Music

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Amoeba Music

Amoeba Music’s unique, vibrant stores in Berkeley, San Francisco and Hollywood has welcomed independent music lovers of all kinds since 1990. Their website offers a diverse and affordable selection of DVDs and vinyl LPs. It’s also a trading post for new and used discs, so expect daily changes in stock and good variety. You can find just about anything you’re looking for here. Free shipping is available within the U.S.

 Music snob alert -Amoeba’s community of buyers and their team of music retail veterans have been in the scene for years, some being music-makers themselves with a collective depth of knowledge and experience.

John Coltrane -My Favorite Things LP,  $26.98


Nina Simone -I Put A Spell on You LP,  $34.98

Dusty Groove
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Dusty Groove Chicago Record Store and Warehouse

Dusty Groove is one of those stores everyone wishes they lived down the street by. This store stocks older records for those who like to scavenge for vintage gems. It’s warm and well-categorized, voted by the Chicago Reader as Best Record Store this year. Be sure to check them out if you’re experimental in your music tastes, or have an inner child from the 70’s.

Baby Huey -The Baby Huey Story  -The Living Legend LP USD$15.99


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