RightTechAdvice Turntables Best Portable Turntable Reviews

The best portable turntables offer a unique blend of a pretty acceptable sound, mobility, and nostalgia. These compact devices are designed for vinyl enthusiasts who value portability and ease of use. While it’s important to set realistic expectations regarding sound quality – these models, given their affordability and design features, won’t rival high-end turntables in acoustic performance – their cost-effectiveness justifies their capabilities.

In this article, I delve into some of the finest portable LP players available, guiding you through the nuances of each to help you find a machine that aligns with your needs and budget.

Our pick
Victrola Revolution GO
Victrola Revolution GO
Best portable record player
Victrola Revolution GO, the world’s first portable, rechargeable, Bluetooth record player and the battery-powered Revolution GO allows you to take vinyl records any place you want to listen. Read the full review.

Portable turntables comparison table

Name Drive type Operation type Speeds Phono Pre-Amp Bluetooth Review
Victrola Revolution GO best overall belt manual 33 1/3, 45, 78 RPM no yes Review
Crosley Cruiser Plus also great belt fmanual 33 1/3, 45, 78 RPM no yes Review
Byron Statics 601 belt manual 33 1/3, 45, 78 RPM no yes Review
Victrola The Journey belt manual 33 1/3, 45, 78 RPM no yes Review

Advantages and disadvantages of portable vinyl players

advantages and disadvantages of portable vinyl players

When considering such a specific model turntable, it’s essential to weigh the benefits and limitations of such a choice.

One of the key advantages of good portable record players is their mobility. Their compact design is not just a boon for portability but also ensures they take up minimal space. Moreover, the straightforward and intuitive operation serves as a perfect introduction for beginners.

In terms of aesthetics, portable turntables often come in a variety of designs, ranging from retro to modern and catering to different stylistic preferences. This visual diversity adds to their appeal as both music players and decorative pieces.

However, these advantages come with certain trade-offs. The most notable is in sound quality. Due to their size and design, compact record players typically cannot compete with the acoustic performance of larger, more sophisticated machines. This limitation is often a result of simpler construction materials.

Durability is another concern with such models. Their lightweight design, while beneficial for transport, often means a compromise in robustness. Frequent travel can accelerate wear and tear, reducing the device’s longevity.

Finally, portable turntables offer limited upgrade options. Unlike their stationary counterparts, they don’t allow much room for customizing or enhancing components like cartridges and styluses. This limitation can be a drawback for keen users looking to improve their listening experience progressively.

In wrapping up, it’s clear that portative tables have their own unique appeal, offering the nostalgic allure of vinyl in a handy and budget-friendly form. However, they do come with certain trade-offs in terms of sound fidelity, robustness, and personalization options. Recognizing these factors is important for deciding whether a player aligns with what you’re looking for and how you want to enjoy your music.

Here, you can also check the best all-in-one turntable.

Best portable record players reviews

Victrola Revolution GO – best overall

Victrola Revolution GO features

Victrola, a brand steeped in history, has been synonymous with quality phonographs since the early 20th century. Evolving with time, they’ve managed to blend traditional charm with modern technology, a trait exemplified in the Victrola Revolution GO.

When you first lay eyes on this model, it’s hard not to be impressed by its thoughtful design. The Revolution GO isn’t just about playing records, it’s about taking your music with you. The detachable guitar strap and retractable handle are game-changers, ushering in a new level of portability for vinyl enthusiasts. Imagine the freedom of effortlessly carrying your favorite tunes anywhere – that’s what this player offers. And while the lid cleverly doubles as a vinyl stand, it does call for a bit of care to keep it in good shape.

The sound quality is another delightful aspect of the Revolution GO. Despite its portable build, it strikes a fine balance, offering satisfactory audio for casual listening. The built-in Bluetooth stereo speaker churns out clear sound, but what really takes the experience up a notch is the battery life. The extended 12-hour battery life means you can enjoy your music without constantly worrying about the next charge – a boon for long days out or impromptu get-togethers.

Victrola Revolution GO sound

Choosing between the Victrola Revolution GO and the Crosley Cruiser Plus can be a bit of a no-brainer, particularly when you focus on aspects like sound quality, battery life, and portability. The Cruiser Plus does a fair job with its reliable turntable, but the Revolution GO really steps it up. It not only offers a fuller, richer sound quality but also boasts a remarkable 12-hour battery life that’s hard to overlook. And when it comes to moving around with your music, the Revolution GO’s design is just spot on – it’s super convenient for those who love taking their tunes on the road.

In conclusion, the Victrola Revolution GO earns its spot as the best portable record player in its class and in my review. Its blend of portability, sound quality, innovative features, and unique design make it a standout choice.

Key specs

  • Drive type: belt.
  • Operation type: manual.
  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Phono Pre-Amp: no.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: no.
  • Aux input: yes.


  • Highly transportable.
  • Extended battery life – up to 12 hours of playtime, impressive for a portable turntable.
  • Clear and room-filling sound, with decent bass from the internal speakers.
  • Allows streaming of records to external Bluetooth speakers.
  • Features a low tracking force, minimizing wear on records.
  • Includes a removable lid that doubles as a vinyl stand.


  • Bluetooth streaming can be finicky at times.
  • No automatic return for the arm.
  • The lid, while functional as a stand, is somewhat delicate and needs careful handling to avoid damage.

Crosley Cruiser Plus – also great

Crosley Cruiser Plus features

The Crosley brand has long been a familiar name in the world of vinyl players, particularly known for balancing affordability with a nod to vintage style. The Crosley Cruiser Plus continues this tradition, offering a portable turntable experience that’s both nostalgic and functional.

Right off the bat, the Cruiser Plus appeals with its classic suitcase design, a throwback to the golden age of vinyl. It’s not just about looks, though, this table is a reliable performer. It’s equipped to play 3 speeds (33 1/3, 45, and 78 RPM), catering to a wide range of vinyl records. The adjustable pitch control is a nice touch, allowing for a bit more precision in your listening experience.

In terms of build and stability, this babe impresses. It has a robust motor that ensures steady play, even with slightly warped records – a testament to its quality construction. The overall build feels solid and reliable, particularly for its price range.

However, the player does have a few areas where, in my opinion, it could improve. The built-in speakers, for instance, are adequate for casual listening but tend to falter at higher volumes, leading to a somewhat muffled sound quality. Fortunately, the option to connect external Bluetooth speakers or use the Aux input offers a workaround, letting you enhance the sound as needed.

Crosley Cruiser Plus sound

To sum up, the Crosley Cruiser Plus distinguishes itself as the best portable turntable in terms of functionality and flexibility. Its solid performance, ability to play at different speeds, and adjustable pitch control make it a practical choice for those seeking a dependable and versatile turntable that’s also easy to use and transport.

Key specs

  • Drive type: belt-drive.
  • Operation type: manual.
  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Speakers: yes.
  • Phono Pre-Amp: no.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: yes.
  • Aux in.: yes.


  • Good build quality.
  • Stable turntable performance – handles records well, even warped ones, thanks to a powerful and steady motor.
  • Versatile connectivity.
  • Three-speed playability.
  • Adjustable pitch control adds a layer of customization to the listening sessions.


  • The built-in speakers can sound muddy or distorted, especially at higher volumes.

Byron Statics 601

Byron Statics 601 features

Having spent time with the Byron Statics 601, it’s clear that this turntable is a fitting entry point for those venturing into vinyl on a budget. It strikes a reasonable balance between cost and functionality, though it’s not without its limitations.

The player’s design is one of its stronger points. Wrapped in a faux leather casing, it has a certain aesthetic appeal that belies its budget nature. Functionally, it handles the basics well, playing records at 33, 45, and 78 RPM. The inclusion of an extra needle and a DC adaptor is a practical touch, showing foresight for the user’s long-term needs.

When it comes to sound quality, the Statics 601 performs adequately for its price range. It’s important to set expectations correctly here – the audio is passable for casual listening but doesn’t quite reach the fidelity found in higher-priced models. You’ll notice a hiss during the quieter parts of your records, and the built-in speakers tend to lean towards the tinny side, a characteristic that might encourage the use of external speakers for a more enriched sound. However, adding external speakers doesn’t mute the internal ones, which could be quite inconvenient.

The turntable scores high on user-friendliness. It’s a breeze to set up and use, making it a great choice for beginners or anyone seeking a no-fuss approach to vinyl. The addition of a lever for the stylus might seem minor, but it’s a thoughtful touch that really adds to the listener’s overall enjoyment of the player.

Byron Statics 601 sound

In summary, the Byron Statics 601 is a solid choice as a budget portable record player, especially for newbies. It offers a good mix of style, ease of use, and basic functionality. However, its audio performance and speaker quality reflect its price point, serving as a reminder that in the world of turntables, you often get what you pay for.

Key specs

  • Drive type: belt.
  • Operation type: manual.
  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Phono Pre-Amp: no.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: no.
  • Aux in.: yes.


  • The size and design make it easy to move and store.
  • Easy setup – suitable even for children.
  • Attractive retro look with a faux leather case.
  • Three-speed compatibility adds to the player’s versatility.
  • Comes with an additional needle and a lever for safe stylus handling.


  • Limited sound quality.
  • No speaker muting.

Victrola The Journey

Victrola The Journey features

Delving into the world of affordable turntables, Victrola The Journey presents itself as a noteworthy contender. It isn’t just any suitcase record player, it has some neat tricks up its sleeve. Firstly, its sound-isolating feet are a game changer. They cut down on vibration, giving you clearer, crisper sound. It’s versatile, too, playing all your records, whether 33s, 45s, or 78s.

But here’s where it gets really interesting: the Journey comes into its own when you hook it up to a high-end sound system. Connect it to tube amps or studio monitors, and you’ll notice a significant leap in sound quality. Sure, the built-in Bluetooth speakers are fine for everyday listening, but when you pair it with some serious audio gear, it’s a whole new ballgame.

The player comes packed with options – stereo RCA outputs, a line input, and even a headphone jack. This means you can easily switch it up between blasting your tunes on a big stereo system or enjoying a more personal listening experience with your headphones.

In comparing the similarly priced Victrola The Journey and Crosley Cruiser Plus, each model shows distinct strengths. The Journey stands out with its sound-isolating design and superior audio quality.

Victrola The Journey sound

Conversely, the Crosley Cruiser Plus is a hit with beginners, offering easy-to-use features like adjustable pitch control. Its function as a Bluetooth speaker adds versatility, appealing to those seeking more than just a vinyl player.

In conclusion, Victrola The Journey distinguishes itself as a versatile and quality choice in the affordable turntable market. Its features, like sound-isolating feet and compatibility with high-end audio systems cater to both casual and keen listeners alike. With its array of connectivity options, it offers a level of versatility that’s hard to beat at its price point.

Key specs

  • Drive type: belt.
  • Operation type: manual.
  • Speeds, RPM: 33 1/3, 45, 78.
  • Phono Pre-Amp: no.
  • Bluetooth: yes.
  • USB: no.
  • Aux in.: yes.


  • Good sound quality.
  • Supports 3-speed settings (33 1/3, 45, 78 rpm).
  • Sound isolating feet – minimizes vibration.
  • Multiple output options.


  • A higher tracking force.
  • The turntable doesn’t start spinning immediately and requires manual arm positioning, which some users find inconvenient.

Features to consider when buying a portable record player

features to consider when buying a portable record player

Needle quality and replacement options

When shopping for a portable vinyl player, it’s important to note that the cartridges in these models often lean towards the mediocre or lower-end in terms of quality. However, a key aspect to consider is the potential for replacing them. Opting for devices that offer replaceable cartridges can significantly enhance your long-term listening experience.

Speaker output and external speaker compatibility

Don’t overlook the speaker output! While many portable record players come with built-in speakers for on-the-go tunes, these are often more about convenience than top-notch sound. This is where the ability to connect to external speakers becomes a game-changer. Opting for a player compatible with external audio systems can dramatically elevate your music sessions, offering richer sound and more flexibility in setting up your listening space.

Speed settings (33⅓, 45, 78 RPM)

speed settings (33⅓, 45, 78 RPM)

You’ll want options for 33 1/3, 45, and sometimes 78 RPM in your turntable. This versatility ensures compatibility with a wide range of vinyl records, from classic LPs to singles and special editions, broadening your listening possibilities.

Battery life and power options

Battery life is a pivotal factor in portable record players, dictating how long you can enjoy music on the go. Opt for models with robust battery life and multiple power options, like USB or AC adapters. This ensures uninterrupted listening and flexibility in both indoor and outdoor settings.

Additional features

Don’t overlook the additional features. These may include Bluetooth connectivity for wireless streaming, USB ports for digital conversion, headphone jacks for private listening, and built-in preamps for easy speaker connection. Such features not only add convenience but also expand the ways you can use and enjoy your player, making it a more versatile and valuable addition to your music collection.

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