The modernization and digitalization of music have lead musicians to use laptops and other modern techy devices for sound production and mixing.
However, there is still nothing cooler than scratching and turning vinyl discs with your own hands and creating some good music. And while laptops and music production software pop like mushrooms, there are still people out there who believe in the ability of a good turntable, scratching and mixing sounds by ears!
If you are one of the young DJs who are looking to turn to the old-school turntable to enhance technical skills as a DJ, here are the best turntables for scratching you can try!
Turntables for Scratching Comparison Table
Top 10 Best Turntables for Scratching Reviews: Perfect for Beginners and Professionals
If you have the right instrument, making music will become easier. One of the most important factors you need to consider when choosing your music instruments is the quality of your equipment. It is also the same as choosing a good DJ turntable. We recommend you to select traditional setups with two tables and vinyl records since they are better. In this post, we will share with you some best turntables for scratching for beginners. Check out and discover them.
Audio-Technica AT-LP120-USB Turntable – Best Selling Turn table for Scratching
This professional turntable from reputable company Audio-Technica has been constructed and designed as a high-torque, direct-drive turntable, making it suitable for DJs and other music-loving people who don’t mind spending a couple of hundred of dollars.
It is classy and sleek in matte silver and black color, perfectly fitting into any stereo music or home entertainment systems. In addition, the turntable features a built-in photo-preamp that allows you to use it with several receivers, powered by A/V component or speakers.
Boasting modern features, this turntable has an integral stereo phono amplifier with a USB output to connect to a computer for easy LP to digital conversions. Featuring 3-phase, 16-pole, brushless DC motor, it operates in 3 speeds and produces high torque for unflinching speed stability, fast startup, simple back-queuing, reverse and forward play and smooth operation.
Also, it has S-shaped tonearm with an adjustable tracking force and anti-skid adjustment. The phono cartridges offer a distinct combination of precise tracking capability and high-fidelity performance.
- High torque direct-drive motor allows controlled playback
- USB connectivity for digital conversions
- Quality tonearm that tracks great
- Automatically change the player speed
- Included cartridge not suitable
- Attached RCA are inconvenient
Pioneer PLX 500 K Turntable – Best For Durability
Reputable company Pioneer offers a muscular turntable with a durable and heavier built, that promises to lasts years of abuse. Thanks to its heavy body, the turntable also promises excellent vibration damping as well as a precise audio playback. Its high torque deck allows the platter to accelerate to a consistent speed faster which DJs value.
This makes the high-torque deck suitable for scratching and making this heavy beast a favorite among DJs. The turntable also features an electronic speed selector that makes it even more convenient for DJs. A simple press of the button allows you to change the speed and even have a three-speed option of 78 RPM.
Meanwhile, the universal type of S-shape tonearm is fully equipped with a gimbal-supported type bearing structure. This means that there is less bearing friction, allowing the stylus to better track grooved in the record. Also, the turntable comes with USB connectivity, allowing you to make a digital recording of your vinyl collection.
To provide high-quality sound, the turntable uses the shortest possible audio routing from stylus to output to reduce sound distortion. Meanwhile, the line and phono outputs allow you to connect the turntable directly to the speaker or sound system to enjoy the warm and clear analog sound.
- High torque motor ensures precise audio playback
- Excellent vibration damping structure
- USB connectivity
- Universal type S-shaped tonearm
- Some users want a more manual turntable
- Hard to determine the origin of a cartridge
Numark PT01 Scratch DJ Turntable – Best For Budget
A portable vinyl turntable, the Numark PT01 Scratch is one of the few types of vinyl offering 3 speed— 78, 45, and 33 1/3 RPM. Portable and lightweight, the turntable is ready to use right out of the box, so you do not have to worry about assembling its pre-balanced tonearm.
In addition, the tonearm is durable, offering maximum stiffness. Also, it has a magnetic anti-skating mechanism that minimizes cartridge vibrations as well as sound distortions. It features a built-in Scratch Slide Switch which is fully adjustable and replaceable, offering your flexibility.
Unlike other turntables, this one comes fully equipped with a speaker as well as a 10 percent pitch control that is useful to play the 45-speed vinyl records. Also, Numark included headphones and RCA line outputs for connecting with external sound sources.
- Easy to replace a cartridge
- Easy to set-up
- May require an external amplifier
- Inconvenient switch location
Crosley C200 Turntable – Best Looking Turntable for Scratching
The C200 Turntable is Crosley’s very first direct-drive system and is currently gaining popularity. This switch from the belt-driven turntable allows a more accurate sound and faster playback speed. Plus, it has done a great job of eliminating unwanted noise.
This turntable also boasts the sharp Audio-Technica magnetic cartridge that’s adjusted to perfection. Its sound quality did not disappoint and has been tested in several genres including deep house, ambient, indie rock and trap in excessively loud volumes with little to no distortions at all.
It features a balanced S-shaped tonearm with anti-skate, hydraulic lift control, lockable rest and height adjustment. For some turntables, setting up can be quite frustrating thanks to the need of balancing the tonearm, however, with Crosley’s C200, it comes pre-assembled. In addition, the adjustable pitch control adds a nice touch and useful for professional DJs, allowing you to easily adjust pitch and tempo.
While most budget turntables look cheap, the C200 hails an expensive-looking design with its dazzling strobe dots with an elegant matte black finish. These sleek lines and cool technical details are all functional though. Meanwhile, the transparent plastic case allows playing even with the lid shut and guaranteed not to damage your vinyl.
- Easy to set up and use
- Excellent features for both professionals and beginners
- Durable S-shaped tonearm
- Good-looking with a modern touch
- Low-quality pre-amp
- Short RCA cables
Stanton T.62 MKII Professional Turntable – Best For High Quality Components
A sturdy and professional turntable, the Stanton T.62 MKII uses a direct-drive, high-torque motor with 2 available playback speeds. Thanks to its direct-drive motor, this turntable for scratching promises amazing sound and accurate playback speed, all at an affordable price tag.
Its platter is lightweight but comes with a slip mat in order to dampen unwanted sound distortions and resonance. It even has a ground cable so that there are no whirring or humming sounds.
Based on Stanton’s bestselling original T.60, the new T.2 retained the all-black top with grey controls, to suits any home studio or entertainment system. Even with its cheap price tag, this turntable features a high-quality 300 cartridge, completing its minimalistic and modern look.
Meanwhile, its tonearm is nicely weighted, improving tracking and produces great sound quality and making it ideal for scratching. Other enjoyable features of this great turntable are the manual pitch fader, dual start/stop switches for a 2-person scratching, increasing or decreasing playback pitch by 1- percent and includes RCA stereo outputs with the long RCA cables(Read more: RCA connector from wiki).
- Little sound distortions
- User-friendly features
- High quality 300 cartridge
- Minimalistic modern design
- Heavy, not portable
- Lacks the USB connectivity
- Missing 75 RPM option
Stanton STR8.150 MKII Professional Direct Drive DJ Turntable
This model is not compatible with USB connectivity. The Stanton STR8150 is highly recommended for those who are planning on the DJ-ing world as a career.
It is built with a high-torque motor so that you can scratch with ease. The unit is packed in a solid steel casing. It will offer you speed adjustments, reverse playing, adjustable feet, pitch control, as well as key correction. These features are great for you to DJ effectively.
This model is set in a black colored built. Although this model is pricey a bit, it ensures to give you exceptional value for the price. This turntable is one of the best choices and won’t disappoint you.
Audio Technica AT LP60BK Fully Automatic Belt Drive Stereo Turntable
Another right option of Audio Technica is the Audio-Technica AT-LP60BK. This is an excellent choice for your budget since it’s an inexpensive consideration. Although its quality and feature are less of the one listed previously, it’s still a good option. You can purchase the version of it with USB connectivity if you want.
It offers you two models, to choose from. However, it’s best to purchase one coming with a USB connectivity. And, you can get more connectivity options, it means it gives you more creativity.
The turntable brings a built-in switchable phono pre-amp. Moreover, there are cartridge and an excellent platter. Plus, it features all the necessary cables. It promises to give you the essentials you need for scratching.
TEAC TN 300 Analog Turntable
This is also a high-quality turntable on the market. It ensures to provide you with useful features. It offers perfect speeds. Actually, the TEAC TN-300 Analog Turntable is compatible with both USB and RCA connectivity.
You can find it in a beautiful aluminum die-cast. It offers an MM Phono EQ. With it, you can also get a little warmer sound compared to most turntables at this range. Moreover, there are also dust covers included in the decks along with nice rubber feet.
Another useful feature is the high-torque motor. It’s much better compared to many other turntables in its range. Plus, this turntable includes five different colors to choose from as your preference.
Pyle PLTTB1 Professional Belt – Drive Manual Turn table Scratching
This turntable is also highly recommended for those who are shopping on a tight budget. This unit comes with an excellent ratio of quality and price. In fact, most of the products from the Pyle PLTTB1 are budget-friendly.
You can get this turntable with a price lower than 100 dollars. However, it still promises to give you decent quality. Moreover, you will also receive an upgradable cartridge. Also, there are also some extra features as strobe illumination, pitch control, weighted tonearm, as well as a dust cover.
It is built with a cartridge along with a stylus. It can also be used straight out of the box. Overall, this unit is a good turntable for beginners. There is no built-in pre-amp. If you want to get the built-in pre-amp, you can choose the model with the USB connection.
Jensen JTA 230 3 Speed Stereo Turntable with Built In Speakers
The last one on our list today is the Jensen JTA-230. It offers you a tone control as well as pitch adjustment. Moreover, it comes with not only USB but also RCA output and headphone jack. Therefore, it gives you all the ins and outs for a very affordable price.
There are also built-in speakers which are convenient in some cases. Besides, this unit is quite small in comparison to others. With this model, you will get the experience of listening to old records.
This model is not ideal for professional setups. However, it’s still perfect for your other models or casual record playing.
Frequently Asked Questions:
Q: Can you scratch on any turntables?
A: For most DJs, you will need a mixer, a pair of direct-drive turntables, and a collection of vinyl records to practice scratching and sampling. Technically, you can “scratch” with one turntable, however, you will not be making music. Also, as long as you have a direct-drive model, it should be fine for vinyl scratching.
Q: Can you scratch on a DJ controller?
A: Yes. However, scratching on a DJ controller does not sound the same as on vinyl. Still, the sound you’re scratching won’t degrade in quality the more you scratch with it on a DJ controller and you do not get any feedback or bass rumble through the system.
Q: Does scratching damage my records?
A: Yes. With scratching, the records will eventually wear out. They can warp and degrade. With that said, scratching with just any needle can damage the record more quickly. This is why DJs use specialty needles with a more rounded tip in order to prevent damage to the record as much as possible.
Whether you are a budding DJ or a professional, a turntable is a piece of must-have equipment in your DJ arsenal.
Turntables provide complete control over your music along with the ability to achieve complex scratches as well as sound manipulation with your own hand. And any vinyl enthusiasts will argue that there’s nothing that can beat the feeling you get from scratching vinyl records with a turntable.
So, if you wish to enhance your technical skills as a DJ and make everyone dance to the beat with your own hands, make sure to get only the best turntable for scratching from the list above.