07 Jan

Laser Turntable Plays Scratched, Warped and Broken Records.

I came across this record player a few years ago, and recently found it again. It actually uses lasers to play the record instead of a needle. In spite of this, it is still analog, not digital.

The ELP Laser Turntable uses five lasers, two to track along the grooves, one to stay the same distance from the record, and two to play the stereo sound from either side of the groove. Because of this, it can play records that have been scratched, warped, and even broken.

I asked for a demo CD from the company, and it came with some sound samples. Now, trying to show sound samples from vinyl on a CD is hard. It inherently has sound degradation. But it does show how records that are normally considered ruined, can be played again.

It also reads the information on the vinyl record, and can skip tracks just as on a CD. that is pretty cool.

What about quality of music? Well, like I said earlier, it is hard to hear a difference since it was transferred to CD, but I really did notice a difference in sound. Was it enough difference to pay the full $10,000? I don’t think so. But there were definite differences in the sound. You can also buy a declicker that will take out much of the hissing, clicking, and popping that most people associate with playing vinyl records.

This record player would be perfect and really is a must have for audio historians, and audio restoration. Libraries could use this. If you have a business where you need to get audio from records that are in horrible shape, then you need this. If you are an audiophile, and want the best sound you can, then go ahead; if money is no object.

For the rest of us, I believe that the price is too much. You can get good turntables, and cartridges and get just as good of sound.

Having said that, the biggest point for the laser turntable is the fact that since it uses lasers and not needles, It doesn’t wear on your record. Wow! That is kind of important. But again, worth $10,000? Not to me, but you make your own decision.

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2 Responses to “Laser Turntable Plays Scratched, Warped and Broken Records.”

  1. turntables Says:

    good article, thanks for sharing.

  2. D. Harrison Says:

    Technics and others made some turntables that were able to skip like a cd player…..most were linear trackers and were quite affordable! Some sound great others were cheap garbage.

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