A DJ turntable is a circular rotating platform of a record player where the record is being placed. On an on, turntable became synonymous to a record player, even become interchangeable. However, in general, a turntable is a music playing device that mostly turns a vinyl record.
Vinyl might be the last thing modern DJs want to have. Unless you want to incorporate vinyl records to your mixes, you need to buy the old-school turntable.
However, with the emergence of the CD players, MP3s and now digital records online, it’s unlikely that DJs still want to bring these things at gigs and club nights.
However, if you want to have a taste of how the old days feel like or if you want to give a vintage touch and color of your mixes and music production, we give you a list of the best DJ turntables in 2021. These products are still available in the market and are great to check out.
Here are our top picks for the best DJ turntables in 2021
Audio-Technica AT-LP60 Stereo Turntable
A fully automatic belt-drive turntable that can easily convert your vinyl records to digital audio files is what you can take advantage from the Audio-Technica AT-LP60 Stereo Turntable.
Comes with two speeds — 33 1/3 and 45 RPM with anti-resonance and diecast aluminum platter. It’s compatible with both Mac and Windows PC and works well with Audacity software for the digitization of your records.
It has a switchable phono preamp that has RCA output, which you can easily connect to audio systems and speakers. Its dual magnet phono cartridge comes with a replaceable diamond stylus to keep the record running smoothly.
Note: For outside US purchases, better buy it in your respective region. This operates in 120V in the US.
- Comes with a built-in phono preamp
- Has user replaceable stylus
- Plays between 7-inch and 12-inch vinyl records
- Phono cartridge is fixed and cannot be changed
- Doesn’t have a counterweight
Pyle PLTTB1 Professional Manual Turntable
Dubbed as the ‘best’ belt-drive turntable on the market, check if Pyle PLTTB1 Professional Manual Turntable would also be the best for you. It’s reliable and ready to take on intensive scratching and mixing with its rugged construction. Packed with great features which are all simple to use, even for beginners.
It boasts a weighted S-toned arm with cartridge and stylus included. It has an adjustable pitch control that allows you to go +/- 16 percent with dual playback speeds like the Audio-Technica AT-LP60. Strobe lights illuminate the markings for a more accurate and precise adjustment.
- Very easy to use and to set up
- Has all the necessary adjustments
- Excellent turntable for the price
- The needle is rather loud
- But can’t be heard when the music is playing
- Not automatic
- Doesn’t have a phono output
Gemini TT-1100USB DJ Turntable
Gemini TT-1100USB is a belt-drive turntable that is way beyond your average music gear, though very affordable.
It’s very easy to use with features like the soft-touch motor on/off button with LED indicator, pitch slider for a more personalized playback, one-touch variable speed buttons with 33, 45 and 78 RPM options, and more. It comes with a USB port that makes it easier to connect to Mac or Windows PC systems.
This turntable is perfect, even in a crowded environment since it has adjustable rubber feet that gives an excellent support, at the same time, eliminating external vibrations and feedback.
The aluminum tonearm provides superior tracking and skips resistance, to be able to make great mixes anywhere. Additionally, it comes with line-level RCA outputs, adjustable counterweight, and anti-skating control.
- Has a built-in USB interface
- Which is a selling point for most DJs
- Great product from the trusted brand
- The solid aluminum platter is reliable
- Need additional set up right out of the box
- No height adjustment
- No strobe light/dots
Stanton T52B Straight Arm Belt-Drive Turntable
For beginner to mid-level DJs looking for a turntable, the Stanton T52B Straight Arm Belt-Drive Turntable is just the perfect grab. It’s a belt-drive turntable with easy to operate features onboard in the sturdy design and practical layout of this gear.
It comes with a straight tonearm that offers scratch DJs improved tracking functionalities.
This turntable features two playback speeds: 33 or 45 RPM, two start/stop switches for battle set up or mix and a pitch control slider with +/- 10% adjustment. Includes RCA stereo outputs, RCA cables, slip mat and dust cover. With its design and features, it’s a perfect go-to turntable for aspiring DJs.
- All-metal box with so many features on board
- Very easy to set up and use
- With light
- Pitch adjuster that allows you to speed up or slow down records
- The lack of ‘line output’
- You need a preamp if you connect to an interface without phono input
- Can’t raise or lower the tonearm
A direct-drive, high-torque turntable like the Audio-Technica AT-LP120-USB Turntable is something that most seasoned DJs want to have. It uses a DC servo motor for quick start-up and maintains accurate rotational speed at either 33-1/3 45, or 78 RPM through the highly-accurate, selectable pitch lock.
Additionally, it has a manual pitch control adjustment in two ranges: +/-10 percent or +/-20 percent.
It features selectable internal stereo phono preamp that allows it to be connected directly to other music components without a dedicated turntable input.
Included in the package are a USB cable and adapter cables to easily connect to Mac or Windows PC and Audacity software that digitizes your old LPs to high-quality MP3 or FLAC files.
The forward and reverse play capability is just unique to this turntable if you read the rest of the products. The platter is made with aluminum with slip mat and has start/stop button.
- Has counterweight
- Pitch adjust and anti-skating feature
- Comes with a built-in preamp to connect to a wide range of interface
- Has USB port so you can digitize your vinyl records
- Doesn’t have a headphone out where you can listen to your recordings
- RCA cables are hardwired
- Not detachable
- Its motor configuration can transfer vibrations to the platter
Reloop RP-2000-M DJ Turntable
The only Quartz driven direct-drive turntable on the list, the Reloop RP-2000-M DJ Turntable is worth checking out. It utilizes statically-balanced S-shaped tone arm, electronic motor brake, and wheel-away need, making it a reliable option for DJs.
The direct-drive motor allows exact-to-the-second-accuracy along with the professional start button of this turntable.
Purposefully designed with extra heavy construction, metal chassis, and black metallic finish, RP-2000-M is really a head turner. It’s capable of connecting a beat counter or a remote starter, depending on your choices.
- Robust construction and clean design
- Has enough precision to both platter and pitch control
- Nice turntable to do scratching
- May lose performance over time
- No height adjustment for the tonearm
- No instructions manual coming with your purchase
Pioneer Pro DJ PLX-500-K Turntable
Want to rekindle the past with the greatness of vinyl records, yet still need to make digital recordings? Go for the Pioneer Pro DJ PLX-500-K Turntable.
You can either use the turntable alone to mix and scratch your old vinyl records or interface it with rekordbox dvs, a compatible DJ mixer and the RB-VS1-K Control Vinyl to manipulate digital files. This versatile turntable will effortlessly produce warm, clear analog sound.
It’s a servo-type direct-drive turntable that has a tonearm with a height adjustment range of 6mm. With the cover art display, you can put the record covers on display while playing the vinyl — because of the sleeve stand inside the cover dust cover.
In totality, PLX-500-K is great in vibration damping with precise audio playback and USB output to make digital files of the vinyl records you have.
- Has counterweight
- S-shaped tonearm
- Comes with removable cartridge and headshell
- Excellent turntable with great sound
- You might encounter problems when you’re into scratching on this turntable
- Motor is not consistent
- Plastic and feels cheap
Numark NTX1000 DJ Turntable
A professional manufacturer like Numark knows what the DJs really need and bring to the table Numark NTX1000 DJ Turntable. It’s an incredible direct-drive motor turntable with a lot of usable functions you can easily play with.
Features a full-sized platter with high-torque, it offers two playback speed options: 33 1/3 and 45 RPM.
The tonearm is an S-shaped which is great for accurate tracking and includes height adjustment, damped cueing, anti-skate control and adjustable counterweight to achieve perfect tonearm balance.
This turntable has a pitch control adjustable to 8%, 16%, and 50% for you to create a perfect effect. Designed to resist feedback and vibrations, this is perfect for nightclubs and bass-boosted parties.
- Solid build and handles rumbling well
- Has USB connection to rip your vinyl to MP3
- Range and pitch response is great
- Takes time to get this thing to ‘turn on’
- Adjustment for tonearm counterweight is quite difficult
Numark TTUSB Turntable
Cheaper than the great Numark NTX1000 Turntable, yet Numark TTUSB has its own set of greatness. It’s still a USB-compatible turntable that helps you digitize your vinyl record to be collected directly to iTunes with its EZ converter bundled software.
It comes with adjustable anti-skating control for efficient stereo balancing, which gives you the 33 1/3 and 45 RPM playback speed (up to 78 RPM with software).
It’s one of the few turntables with 1/8-inch stereo mini jack input connector, which lets you transfer cassette tapes (or other line-level sources) to digital files.
If you need to make changes — removing clicks, pops and innate Vinyl noise — use Audacity software in your Mac or PC. It comes with a variable pitch control that gives you that ±10% adjustments. Isn’t it a perfect tool for archiving your old recordings?
- Easy to set up and to use
- Cartridge is upgradable with counterweight and anti-skating feature
- Has USB connection along with phono and line outputs
- Lack of cueing lever
- No strobe dots
- Doesn’t offer 78 RPM playback speed (only in software)
A sexy and sleek turntable can capture your eyes and captivate your heart, but only Audio-Technica AT-LP1240-USB can enrapture your soul. It’s a direct-drive turntable professionally crafted for nightclubs, touring and even for mobile applications.
It offers high-torque, multipole motor, built-in switchable phono preamp to connect to a wide variety of receivers, speakers and A/V components.
Unlike the Audio-Technica AT-LP60 Fully Automatic, it’s manually operated with start and brake control adjustments and selectable playback speeds of 33 1/3, 45 and 78 RPM. It also features anti-resonance, diecast aluminum stroboscopic platter with DJ-style slip mat and speed indicator.
Furthermore, it comes with an S-shaped tonearm with anti-skate and height adjustment, lift control and lockable rest.
- Has plenty of features
- Built-in phono preamp is quite good
- Cables are detachable
- Including the RCA
- Doesn’t come with a cartridge
- Have some hums when you use it
- The metal case makes the turntable sounds boomy
HOW TO CHOOSE THE BEST DJ TURNTABLE in 2021
For starters, DJ turntables have three essential parts — the motor, platter, and the tonearm. The base has the motor — direct-drive and belt-drive — which allows the record to rotate. The platter is responsible for giving a constant speed to the record.
The tonearm has the most complicated task to do. It should be consistent, versatile, frictionless. Tonearm should be consistent since it tracks the record in a consistent manner to prevent permanent damage to the record. The cartridge is where the magic happens, says Mashable.
Now, since you know some basics of a turntable, we go into a few aspects to choose the best DJ turntable 2019.
As mentioned, there are two types of motor — direct-drive and the belt-drive. The former has the motor at the center of the base and directly connected to it. This is more stable and you get minimal fluctuations — perfect for DJing.
For belt-driven, on the other hand, the motor is off-centered, which is not directly connected to the platter, but with a rubber belt. Although this configuration can absorb vibration at some point, it’ll easily snap and break — not ideal for DJs, according to DJ City.
This is what you need to adjust speed and pitch when doing beat matching. For standard turntables, you can have 8%, 10%, 16% and even 50% adjustments of the pitch control. The better the pitch fader, the faster it is that the DJ matches the beats.
Tonearm can directly affect the sound produced by the turntable. So, you should take a lot of considerations with the tonearm alone, including height adjustment, counterweight adjustment, and anti-skating.
The third factor gives a slight pressure on the turntable cartridge and prevents ‘skating’ across the record surface.
There are two types of tonearm: the s-shaped and the straight. The former is preferred by DJs for its top-notched sound quality, while the latter is perfect for scratch DJs mainly for superior tracking.
If you aren’t satisfied with the tips and explanations we give you above, this YouTube video should be very helpful to you. It gives you the basics, as well as thorough explanations on each of the basics. This video also gives recommendations, which make the whole knowledge-sharing more tangible and applicable.
What is The Best DJ Turntable in 2021?
It’s true that pros still prefer to have a DJ turntable in their music set up for the reason that they get exceptional sound fidelity from this round thing. And, that is evident in our choices — from the 10 products in the list, we’re down to two. We have Audio-Technica AT-LP120-USB and Numark NTX1000.
At a closer look, Numark is better in terms of pitch control versatility and vibration tolerance — which gives better sound quality to the recordings. However, if we base our judgment on the price and which one gives more value, it’s clear that Audio-Technica is the best.
Depending on your preferences and your style, you can use either of them. But, for our application, we choose the Audio-Technica AT-LP120-USB for the fact that it’s packed with a lot of features you can maximize.