The Japanese giant Audio Technica that designs and manufactures professional microphones, headphones, phonographic magnetic cartridges and other audio equipment’s, launched a new entry level turntable: The Audio-Technica AT-LP5x direct drive USB, at the IFA 2019. A direct successor to the AT-LP5 which won a What Hi-Fi? Award back in 2016, expectations are already soaring high.
The LP5x possesses some of the magic from its predecessor: the J-shaped tonearm, aluminium platter, and a USB output for digitizing a record collection. Do not write it off as an LP5 with a new name and repackage, however: It features a built-in switchable Moving Magnet and MovingCoil phono/line preamp that enables users to connect it directly to a computer, home stereo, powered speakers and other components that don't have a dedicated phono stage.
Unassumingly attractive, its matte-black chassis is weighty and constructed of anti-vibration damping materials to avoid any shakes and rattles disturbing playback. There’s also now a new external power supply to further remove unwanted sounds from the signal chain. A quick-start direct drive turntable with a die-cast aluminum platter and perhaps the AT-LP5x’s biggest feature addition over its predecessor is the introduction of 78 RPM playback, alongside 33 and 45s. The turntable comes equipped with the new AT-VM95E Dual Moving Magnet stereo cartridge, which is the latest evolution over the popular AT95E. For straight-out-of-the-box playback, the AT-VM95E comes already mounted for the AT-P5x on a universal ½” AT-HS6 headshell.
The AT- P5x has surely gotten a lot of people excited! At this early stage it’s hard to find fault – although the lack of Bluetooth connectivity may put off those who want to avoid the frustration of setting up their speakers with annoying cables. Still, that wired connectivity is usually seen as a plus within the audiophile community, many of whom believe it offers a higher level of audio fidelity.
The brand’s commitment to good materials, smart additional features and flexibility for adding other audio components of your choice make for a turntable that will grow along with your love for vinyl. Those looking to get onboard the vinyl express, they should get off here!
The Audio-Technica AT-LP5x is looking like a great step up towards premium audio for those entering the world of vinyl fandom. The LP5x launched at 349$ is expected to be priced at Rs. 29,999 in India.
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