How Record Players Changed Over The Years & How They Work

Updated on June 12, 2019

How Record Players Changed Over The Years & How They Work

The phonograph was invented by Thomas Edison in 1877, which later became known as the record player. Well, it’s making a comeback and everyone is back in love with vinyl.

Turntables and 12-inch albums are suddenly booming and they are back in fashion. Streaming music is great and all but nothing beats the pleasures of buying physical records and playing them.

How They Work

It’s super simple: we put flat pieces of vinyl that are cut with grooves that represent sound and the record player will use a needle to pick up sound vibrations and play back recorded music. The standard record player includes a turntable and a platform that spins a vinyl album.

Turntables turn on two different mechanisms: direct drives and belt drives. The direct drive’s motor, located directly below the turntable platter, powers said platter. Belt drive turntables also have motors connected to a belt loop that causes the platter to rotate

Records Are In

There are many indications that the vinyl-format is here to stay. Nowadays, it’s “vintage” or “retro” and “quirky” to own one. For some, it’s just a thing to appreciate from the past and to experience music the way it is supposed to be listened to. The media and new technology have kind of impersonalized music.

Holding a real record in your hands and putting in the effort to play through a whole album without flipping through is kind of nice. Some people say record players sound better and clearer than streaming or CDs, even. Whether or not this is real, a lot of people can see the appeal of using a record player and buying new, shiny, big beautiful records.

We can all appreciate the beauty in it. Nowadays, you can buy records from current and newer bands and artists.

They aren’t just making records of old artists back in the day of records, you could get some charting artists on vinyl at Urban Outfitters now. It’s become a hipster, fashionable and cool thing to have a record player. Although, they are modernized aesthetically, though the function stays the same.

Why are Turntables Trendy again?

There are many reasons as to why turntables have bounced back into the market. Just like the vintage camera effect became super popular with the rise of Instagram filters, we’re seeing an iconic piece of the past mold itself into the music scene.

Vinyl isn’t just songs on a plate, it’s a piece of history. It’s a format that takes great care but has a distinct sound that doesn’t sound quite like anything we have digitally. It makes perfect sense as the format is analog. MP3 files are just very accurate guesstimates of the analog signals stored in bytes, but it will never feel quite like vinyl.

The hipster culture surrounding the upcoming music industry is another thing that has affected this trend. It’s a way to identify yourself with the past and pay tribute to it – no matter whether you lived during the vinyl-phase or not.

Record Players Are Better Than Ever

The good news is that record players sound better than ever. Like always, the technological evolution is pushing the boundaries of what we’re capable of. This means, that today, we’re able to get a modern turntable (with functionality such as Bluetooth or Wi-Fi connectivity) at a much better price than previously.

If you’re a DJ, you’ve got to be loving what’s happening to the industry right now. Reputable brands like Audio Technica are firing out high-quality affordable DJ turntables at a steady rate. Not only has the raised awareness of the format led to more artists opting for vinyl, but more people also enjoy and notice if a DJ uses an actual turntable rather than setting his Spotify playlist on autopilot nowadays.

Due to better design, nowadays turntables are easier to clean than they used to be. They’re more mobile overall and have lightweight but strong builds.

What do you guys think? Has the vinyl format come back for good? Is it here to stay this time? What does the future hold for vinyl? Do let us know what your take is on the case.