Best Semi Automatic Turntables: What Are They And Where To Find Them?

You’re a big fan of turntable and looking for purchasing one? Our top best semi automatic turntables miight lend you a hand!
by Helen Appling | Updated: October 10, 2020

Among three types of turntables, semi automatic is rated as the most optimal choice as it has the advantages of a fully automatic turntable with a more pleasant price for your budget.

Today, we will reveal to you all the best semi automatic turntables in this article. Without further ado, let's get started!

Best Semi Automatic Turntable

Collecting and using turntables is a hobby of many people. However, it doesn't mean that everyone is knowledgeable enough to choose the most suitable ones for themselves.

The following are the top 5 best semi automatic turntables that we would like you to have a look at! Take a closer look to know more about them!

Fluance RT81 Elite High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable - Best Of Design

Fluance RT81 Elite High Fidelity Vinyl Turntable - Best Of Design

If you are a fan of classic and rustic designs, then this turntable will probably fascinate you!

The first thing that will probably catch your attention is its solidity. You're still skeptical about this? Keep reading to know why!

This turntable cabin is made from MDF (industrial wood). This is a common material in producing furniture such as tables, chairs, etc. to make the product more durable and sturdy.

Besides, the wooden base is coated with a gloss lacquer to reduce the effects of heat and water, while minimizing scratches

Moreover, the thick plastic lid is designed to protect the internal part such as a cartridge, vinyl disc, and minimize dust accumulation.

Next, an aluminum S-shape tonearm, along with a diamond-tipped stylus, is meticulously designed to increase the accuracy and clarity of the sound.

In addition, Fluance RT81 Elite is a dynamic and flexible turntable. It can play many types of coal discs. The diamond-shaped stylus will go into each groove on vinyl records to produce the sounds as vibrant as possible.

Moreover, the product goes with a pre-amplifier so you don't have to pay extra for separate purchases. The amplifier allows you to upgrade and customize according to your needs when you can change the phono stage or cartridge.

However, some user reported that they encountered problems adjusting the rotation speed. Therefore, you need to adjust the RPM more carefully and precisely as sometimes it will have a deflection.

There is a brother of RT81 Elite and we have a detail review about it. If you're interested, here is the Fluance RT80 detail review

Pros

  • Super solid structure and materials
  • Attractive design
  • Pre-amplifier is included
  • Built-in phono stage

Cons

  • Hard to adjust rotation speed.

TechPlay TCP4530 Analog Turntable - Best For Budget

TechPlay TCP4530 Analog Turntable - Best For Budget

You only have a modest budget, but the desire to have a turntable makes you have butterflies in your stomach? Throw your worry away as we have a solution for you!

With an extremely affordable price, in the segment of products below $200, TechPlay TCP4530's value is more “expensive” than its selling price.

Firstly, you don't have to waste time adjusting the cartridge and stylus regularly - a problem that many users encounter in other more expensive turntables.

Secondly, the low price doesn't compromise the quality of this product. On the other hand, the sound emitted is relatively stable, clear, and especially free from distorting or jarring.

On the contrary, the counterweight of this turntable is not very accurate and received many complaints. So you may have to make an effort to adjust and manage the tonearm.

Overall, with a low price and stable quality, this is a product that you should consider.

Pros

  • Bargain price
  • Easy to assemble
  • Stable and clear output

Cons

  • Inaccurate counterweight.

Thorens TD 402 DD Direct-Drive Turntable - Best Of Materials

Thorens TD 402 DD Direct-Drive Turntable - Best Of Materials

Thorens is an extremely age-old turntable brand from Switzerland. It has a reputation in this industry for high-quality products, which is not only the durability, but also the ability to deliver sounds.

First of all, this product is praised for good design and quality. Thorens TD 402 DD design is simple with basic colors but there are metallic details that enhance the elegance for itself, while make your room more luxurious.

Besides, its sturdy and stable structure set your mind at rest as there is no needs to worry about the durability when using it.

In addition, this turntable is improved and applied advanced technology to the stylus as well as cartridge and other parts to optimize the quality of the output audio.

Its smooth and silent engine also satisfies users since you won’t be bothered by the noise of operating anymore. Moreover, you can upgrade this product to meet your requirements by replacing a cartridge, phono stage, etc.

In conclusion, under any circumstances should you ignore this product except that its price is a bit high!

Pros

  • Deluxe and attractive design
  • Solid structure
  • High-quality sound
  • Can be upgraded

Cons

  • A bit pricey.

Denon DP-400 Semi-Automatic Analog Turntable - Best Of Feature

Denon DP-400 Semi-Automatic Analog Turntable - Best Of Feature

The Denon DP-400 may appeal to you at first sight because of its eye-catching appearance. It’s a classic product but the design is extremely modern and trendy.

With this turntable, you can change the rotation speed to better suit the type of disc you have.  And there’re three speeds that you can consider: 33 1/3 RPM, 45 RPM, and 78 RPM.

In addition to the basic design, it has an adjusting button, which allow you to alter the rotation speed more easily and conveniently. Also, the above cover shell can be detached to save space.

Also, the tonearm of this turntable has an S-shape, which helps to reduce harmonic distortion and produce brighter and clearer sounds.

One more characteristic is automatic stop mode after finishing each record, thus, you don’t have turn off the turntable by yourself anymore.

Although the design of this product is eye-catching and modern, its lid can't close completely, which makes your turntable and records easy to catch dust.

Pros

  • Additional features
  • Eye-catching and modern design
  • Stable quality sounds
  • Reasonable price

Cons

  • Easy to catch dust design

Technics SL 1700 MKII - Best Overall

Technics SL 1700 MKII - Best Overall

As a brand of Panasonic - a leading electronics manufacturing corporation of Japan, Technics has obtained many achievements in the production of audio equipment.

In terms of design, the Technics SL 1700 MKII possesses a solid design  made from high-quality materials, with the metal-covered cabinet helping to increase the bearing capacity as well as reduce impact from the environment.

Moreover, you won't have to spend a lot of time assembling since it's easy to set up.

While Technics SL 1700 has received a lot of compliments from users, this version of MK2 is more favored thanks to these new features.

You can easily adjust the height of the tonearm to achieve the desired sound quality by changing arm height for VTA, Quartz lock speed control, etc. Not to mention its robust and silent engine operates smoothly with many types of vinyl as well as produces clear sound without any distortions.

In general, the price of the Technics SL 1700 MKII isn't cheap. Hence, you need to deliberate about the budget before making a decision.

Pros

  • Study structure
  • High-quality sounds
  • Smooth and silent engine
  • Durability

Cons

  • Pretty high price

Buying Guide

Rotation Speed

Rotation speed is one of the most significant factors to consider when choosing a turntable. Do you know why?

If you buy an unsuitable rotation speed product, then you will probably have to spend some extra money to buy new vinyl records or even a new turntable.

Rotation speed is characterized by revolutions per minute (RPM), which indicates the average speed of the turntable.

33 1/3 or 45 RPM is the most common speed you can find at most turntables on the market. However, there are some exceptions like 78 RPM or others depending on the recorder you choose.

You can check the rotation speed of the vinyl records at home before shopping for a turntable. In case you don't have any vinyl records? Choosing the most popular speeds such as 33 1/3 and 45 RPM are the smart choices!

Cartridge

The cartridge may be included or excluded when you buy a turntable, but most are included.

A device that comes with the cartridge will ensure smooth coordination between parts. On the other hand, you can utilize the old cartridges if they’re not included.

Tonearm

Tonearm directly affects the sound quality of turntables. Although you can change or upgrade your tonearm after purchasing and using it, consider the one that suits you best.

Straight tonearm helps the stylus move more evenly while the curved one will increase the flexibility of your stylus.

The best way to choose is to pick a high-quality turntable to ensure your tonearm quality.

Pre-Amplifier

Most turntables are integrated with pre-amplifiers. The function of this unit is to convert the emitted sound to an audible level so that it can be amplified by the speaker.

Some turntables don't come with a pre-amplifier and you have to buy them separately. Nevertheless, think twice about the problems you may encounter when using an external amplifier.

Features

In addition to Vinyl discs playing features, some turntables allow you to use a USB connection to emit sounds. And certainly, products with more additional features will cost more.

To Sum Up

In conclusion, all products in the top best semi automatic turntables we recommended have their pros and cons that you should pay attention when narrowing down your winner.

To pick up the best turntable, we appreciate Thorens TD 402 DD Direct-Drive Turntable the most.

First, Its elegant design fits every space. At the same time, quality materials will help extend the product life. Furthermore, with its properly aligned parts, you won't encounter difficulties in adjusting factors such as tonearm, cartridge, and so on.

Don’t forget to take note of noticeable things from this article as it can be of the great help

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