Audio-Technica has over 50 years of expertise in the field of record players, and its latest turntable, the AT-LP5x, combines the looks of the 20th century with 21st century technology.
The successor of the popular AT-LP5, the new record player builds on the classic design of turntables from the 60s and 70s, while allowing you to digitize your entire vinyl collection via a USB output.
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A cable to connect the AT-LP5 to your PC or laptop is included in the box, as well as a download link for music recording software Audacity, which can be used to convert your precious records to MP3, WAV, and other digital formats.
Plug and play
Audio-Technica is famed for its turntable cartridges – and as such, the stylus of this record player is fully customizable. It comes with the new AT-VM95E Dual Moving Magnet stereo cartridge, which is pre-mounted on an AT-HS6 headshell – this means your setup is pretty much ready to go straight out of the box.
However, you can swap this cartridge out for any in the VM95 range if you're looking for a different stylus shape or material.
There's no need for an external amplifier (instead the AT-LP5x relies on a built-in phono/line preamp) so you can plug it straight into your computer, stereo, or speakers – no complicated setups necessary.
New to the AT-LP5x is the ability to play your records at 78 RPM, as well as 33 and 45 RPM – although you will need an additional AT-VM95SP stylus to do this.
Like its predecessor, the tonearm sports a stylish J-shaped design, harking back to classic record players from the 60s and 70s, as well as metallic gimbal suspension system and precision bearings.
This, combined with an adjustable anti-skate control means that any unwanted tonearm movement is prevented, which in turn prevents damage to your records and ensures they play as smoothly as possible.
Design-wise, the turntable chassis comes in a sleek matte-black finish, which should look great in any home – and by using anti-vibration damping materials, unwanted resonance that could jeopardize the sound of your vinyls is minimized.
At £349 (about $425 / AU$630), it's not the cheapest Audio-Technica turntable out there; turntables vary wildly in price, going for anything from $99 to $2000. How much you spend on your turntable depends on your budget and needs, but at a first glance, the AT-LP5x seems to cater to budding audiophiles who want a simple setup and have a little pocket money to spend on it.
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Olivia was previously TechRadar's Senior Editor - Home Entertainment, covering everything from headphones to TVs. Based in London, she's a popular music graduate who worked in the music industry before finding her calling in journalism. She's previously been interviewed on BBC Radio 5 Live on the subject of multi-room audio, chaired panel discussions on diversity in music festival lineups, and her bylines include T3, Stereoboard, What to Watch, Top Ten Reviews, Creative Bloq, and Croco Magazine. Olivia now has a career in PR.