In our continuous quest to help you make good decisions, and after much popular demand, this new shopping guide provides a comparison of three excellent entry-level turntables: the Rega RP1 (upgraded with a ‘Performance Pack’), the Pro-Ject Debut Carbon Esprit, and the Music Hall MMF 2.2. This clear and comprehensive guide will help you compare the technical details, strengths, weaknesses and specific musical features of each of these record players. It also contains recommendations of the equipment we think best complements the capacities of each turntable, as well as some customer reviews. We hope that it will help you narrow down your options and find your ideal turntable!
Without a doubt, the Rega RP1 has more musicality and dynamism than any other turntable in its price range. The Performance Pack consists of an upgraded cartridge (a Rega Bias 2 cartridge instead of a Rega Carbon), a 100% natural felt platter mat and a powerful belt. The whole package considerably improves the sound quality of this legendary turntable!
You can enhance this turntable even more by adding a Rega glass platter, which is specifically designed for Rega record players. These platters work to increase the clarity of playback. If you opt for a cartridge made by a different brand, you’ll need a Rega spacer. You can find more information about this in our dedicated shopping guide for turntable upgrades.
‘I installed it within minutes, and the tonearm was already set up so I could play the first record straight away: the sound is excellent, very pure and very clear, but also very dynamic. Suffice it to say, I recommend both this Rega turntable and the excellent customer service I received from maPlatine.com. ’
The Debut Carbon Esprit turntable is one of the undisputed best-sellers by renowned Austrian manufacturer Pro-Ject. This record player is incredibly versatile and user-friendly, without any obvious weaknesses. The Debut Carbon Esprit delivers a remarkable sound quality for its price range, in large part thanks to its extra rigid carbon fibre tonearm. It also comes in a wide range of colours so there’s bound to be something for everyone!
For customers wanting to upgrade this turntable, we have a few suitable recommendations, such as the 2M Blue stylus by Ortofon, a perfect fit for the Ortofon 2M Red cartridge which comes fitted as standard on the turntable. The Pro-Ject Connect It RCA CC phono cable can also make a real difference to sound quality - we can’t recommended it enough!
‘Perfect delivery in record time - I ordered it on Wednesday at 10.30pm and it was delivered on Friday at 9.30am, within my preferred time slot. The turntable was all set up and assembled when it arrived, so all I had to do was attach the platter and remove the cartridge’s protective casing. What followed was pure joy. The sound is really impressive: perfect left/right separation, the brass bursts out, the drums pound, the guitars sing. The detail and musicality of the playback are so incredible, they put MP3 and CDs to shame! My little speakers have never sounded so good! It should obviously only be used to play records that are in very good condition. Thank you to the whole team for your excellent service and incredible professional commitment to bringing our records to life!’
With its stylish gloss finish (in black, red or white), the Music Hall MMF 2.2 turntable exudes pure class. This record player is the American manufacturer’s answer to the Pro-Ject and Rega entry-level offerings, and it's definitely a worthy competitor. It is fitted as standard with the excellent Ortofon 2M Red cartridge and boasts many musical advantages, allowing you to get the very most out of your records!
And as an added bonus, if you buy this record player from us we’ll throw in a leather platter mat by Analogis for improved sound quality. You can also upgrade it with a new cartridge, or even a speed controller.
As you can see, each of these turntables has its own benefits. Your decision should be based on your musical tastes and future plans, such as whether you’re looking to upgrade or not. We hope that this guide has been useful in helping you find the best turntable for you, and that it has answered any questions you may have had about comparisons between entry-level record players!
- Comparison: mid-range turntables (budget of around €700)
- Comparison: high end turntables
> High-end turntables on a €1200 budget
> High-end turntables on a €1500 budget
> High-end turntables on a €2700 budget
- Comparison: turntables in the Prestige range (budget over €3000)