If you are here chances are that you know what you are doing in terms of sampling. We are not going to go in-depth about sampling itself, because that would be a whole subject all on its own, which would be beyond the scope of this article.
Instead, we are going to assume that you know what you are doing and just focus on the best products for you to use in your sampling endeavors. We all know that sound quality is a big deal when it comes to taking samples. Having good quality samples means a lot fewer headaches down the road, which is always good.
We have made this list keeping a few other important details as well. Sound quality is important, but so are other features such as connectivity. It is also important to keep the price range in mind when choosing, so we tried to keep this within a certain range.
Let’s dig into the best turntables we were able to find for you to work on sampling Vinyl records!
Pioneer Pro DJ PLX-1000
There are a few brands out there that have been around for a very long time and are synonymous with high quality. Pioneer is not the only one to meet this criterion, but it surely is one of the precious few. You can be sure that by going with the DJ PLX-1000 you are getting superb audio quality and fidelity, this is a piece of equipment that benefits from over 50 years of experience in the field, and it shows in all of its construction details, as well. You have a lot of the features that you would expect on a high-end turntable such as clean audio output, a very slick design, and a lot of options in terms of turning speed and many other settings.
We feel this is an excellent turntable all around for most uses, and that is the reason why we decided to add it to this list, but there is a drawback here in terms of sampling.
Although the sound quality you get is extremely good. You will need to take a few extra steps to get those sounds in digital format since this turntable does not have any other outputs other than the included RCA connector. It is the only turntable on this list that does not have a USB output. If you know how to get quality samples from analog outputs you will find that this model is perfect for this job due to the number of options you get and the high quality of the results. On the other hand, if you struggle with this part of the process perhaps this model is not for you. Maybe you just want a solution that is more plug-and-play friendly or a turntable that is a bit smarter and can interact with a computer. If that is the case you should probably take a look at the other items on this list.
- Very high quality of sound output
- Very stylish
- h.A lot of playback options.
- Only analog outputs.
In terms of the quality of the parts and build you will not have to worry about the PS-HX500. This machine not only sounds great but looks incredible while doing it. This table is fully ready to take Vinyl sounds into the current scene with excellent hardware that supports your sampling efforts every step of the way. Great sound quality and the ability to plug it using a USB connector are really valuable features that you will come to love if you decide to go with this model.
Great quality and features do not come cheap here, though. This Sony model is on the expensive side of this list, and that is since you are not just paying for the excellent specs and features here. You are getting a Sony product that has a good warranty, just like all Sony products do.
Plugging this turntable into a PC is very easy and quite painless. The machine is smart enough to let you do exactly what you need with your records, and you can get the job done fast and very well. You will have no complaints regarding the resulting audio clips since they can be recorded with very high quality directly into a .wav file, or if you want to save some time and space you can compromise some sound purity and go with .mp3 format.
This model has been around for a few years now, and there seems to be a consensus regarding its overall quality. You will not need to worry about the results here, and you do not need to take our word for it, which is great!
- Superb audio quality
- Excellent connectivity options.
- A bit on the expensive side.
Numark PT01 USB
Numark is a brand that is not as well-known as some of the others on this list. Although they do produce quality products we cant go as far as saying that the name is a stamp of quality as with brands that have been around for several decades. That being said, the result is often surprisingly good and that is why we have decided to add two similar but different models on this list from Numark. The overall quality of parts and build is good and will not disappoint here, and the price tag on these models is a bit lower and more accessible than a lot of its competition. This allows easier access to a machine that has very interesting features.
In terms of sound quality, the PT01 is quite good. It will deliver acceptable sound in all situations, and sometimes you may even be a bit surprised by the outcome. This is a good thing to have because if you are sampling the sound out of this piece of equipment you need it to be as good as it can be. You will be able to use your resulting digital clips without a problem.
As its name states, this turntable comes equipped with a USB port that will enable you to plug the machine directly into a computer. The software that comes with the turntable supports Mac and Windows machines but is also compatible (although not officially) with several Linux distributions. You will have no problem making this piece of equipment work to take as many samples as you need from your records.
When it comes to looks, the PT01 is not the most stylish of the bunch. It looks ok, but looks are not its strong suit. That is ok if you are using it at home to produce tracks or rip your music, though.
You should be able to find a PT01 USB model out there for a very reasonable price, and they are known to be surprisingly durable.
- Good overall quality.
- Not the most stylish out there.
Audio-Technica needs no introduction if you are familiar with this field. If you are not, you will quickly come to learn that this is one of the most reliable brands for excellent quality and durability out there, and we could not complete this list without a model from them that, we feel, works very well for sampling records.
No matter which way you look at it, the AT-LP120 will stun you with the attention to detail that goes into every single aspect of the machine. It has a very nice old-timey look that is sure to fit into most setups, but that is just the tip of the iceberg here. You can get both digital and analog output from this turntable, which is great for sampling, but also means that you can use this machine to listen to your records in very high fidelity. It is compatible with Windows and Mac computers, and the resulting audio files from the interaction with the computer are of staggering quality.
There are also a lot of settings for you to control the sound output right from the turntable itself so that you have to work as little as possible later at the production stage of your project.
If you are looking for a great table to listen to records on and rip them for digital consumption this is a solid choice, too. It is not too expensive for all the features that are packed in it, either.
Not many turntables manage to pull off this trick of having digital outputs and such high analog fidelity, and this model delivers on both fronts with flying colors. A lot of work goes into designing such a machine, and it shows at every turn with the AT-LP120 from Audio-Technica.
- Unbeatable sound quality both in analog and digital mode.
- Very stylish
- Excellent parts and build quality.
- A little heavy.
Numark PT01 Scratch
We have already covered a model from Numark here, and you may be wondering why we would include two different items that are almost called the same. There is a good reason behind it, we promise.
As we mentioned before all of the items on this list will do the job of allowing you to sample your records very well, but there is only one on this list that will enable you to do it while you perform as a DJ on them. Scratching and generating interesting sound effects is a big part of working with records, and a turntable that allows you to record all of this in high digital fidelity is certainly worth a look.
This model is very similar in terms of build and other features to its sister PT01 USB, but you will notice the difference in looks thanks to red details that are hard to miss.
We have already mentioned that these tables aren’t perhaps the best-looking ones, but the build quality is solid and you will have good sounding clips at the end of your sampling sessions.
The Scratch is an affordable model that will give you access to recording like a pro at a very reasonable price, and it is not often that we see these two things combine in a product.
Because this model was built with performing in mind it is designed to be taken with you wherever you go. That is why it is the only model on this list that has a battery so that you can use it on the go for several hours. It may be helpful to consider this more as an instrument because it truly is designed to be used for performance. The fact that you can connect it to a computer gives you great freedom not only for recording but also for modifying sounds while you perform, too.
- Built for performing.
- Can’t compete with the bigger, more expensive names in the field.