I grew up listening to vinyl records. I remember our family having big stacks of records lying around the living room. We would sit there; enjoying the music and watching the records spin round and round. Sometimes we would set our action figures or toy cars on the turntable and watch them go round and round as well. Try doing that with a digital music file.
These days there is a more serious resurgence of interest in vinyl records. Some go so far as to say that vinyl is the only way to listen to music. The 808 Audio TT100BK Wireless Streaming Turntable is ready and waiting to help you experience analog music should you choose to do so. Along with that nostalgic sound, you get some modern conveniences as well. Read on for the full review of the 808 Audio TT100BK Wireless Streaming Turntable.
- Bluetooth compatibility
- 33 foot range
- Built in pre-amp
- 5mm line out
- RCA outputs
- 45 adapter
- Ten multi color LED light modes
- Anti-resonance silicone platter
WHAT’S IN THE BOX
- 4 foot RCA audio cable
- 4 foot 3.5mm cloth aux cable
- 45 adapter
When it comes to design, the TT100BK turntable is very basic right out of the box. It’s your standard turntable with the platter sitting under a smoked lid. There is a headphone jack on the front of the unit, and the rear houses the RCA outputs. Under the lid, you have a silicone platter and the tone arm with the needle in the center. Along the right side, there is a tone arm cueing button to lift and lower the tone arm, a speed selector, volume, power, Bluetooth, and lighting buttons. Nothing really interesting here, it’s all very utilitarian.
But once you turn the player on, you are treated to an amazing LED light show that would fit right in on the dance floor. There are multi-color LED lights under the unit as well as on the turntable itself. There are 10 different lighting modes and an off setting from which to choose. Rave, off, still, chase, fade, chill, rainbow, base light only, pulse, disco, and breath. Some of these modes have the lights moving about at a frantic pace, just the thing if you are having a party. Then there are others that are more relaxed for those times you are in a contemplative mood. And if you don’t like lights with your music, you can always turn them off. I preferred the relaxed light settings myself. The rave and disco were too busy for my taste, but thanks to 808, you can choose the style that fits you.
EASE OF USE
The only setup you have to worry about with the 808 Audio TT100BK Wireless Streaming Turntable is the Bluetooth. Turn on your Bluetooth speaker, make sure it is in pairing mode, power on the turntable, and let them pair. The blinking Bluetooth light on the turntable will stop blinking once pairing is successful. Other than that, just pull it out of the box and plug it in. If you’ve never used a turntable before, make sure you read all the instructions and look up how to properly handle a vinyl record.
The reception of the Bluetooth signal for the 808 Audio TT100BK Wireless Streaming Turntable is advertised as 33 feet. I was able to get the speaker 37 feet away from the turntable before I started to lose the signal. Considering that the turntable must be plugged into the wall for power, this is a bit limiting if you want your sound farther away from the source.
The 808 Audio TT100BK Wireless Streaming Turntable does not have built in speakers, so the sound will vary depending on the speakers in use. But with vinyl records, the sound is not all about the speakers. The platter and the needle have a part to play there as well. The silicon platter did an excellent job of isolating the record from vibrations, and the needle performed just as well. As you would expect with vinyl, the sound was smooth and warm. There is a certain depth to the sound of vinyl that you don’t get from digital. When it comes to midranges, vinyl can’t be beaten. Bass and higher frequencies suffer a bit on vinyl though, this does tend to limit the types of music that sound best on vinyl. This is no fault of 808 Audio’s; it’s just inherent to vinyl records.
The vinyl record may be analog, but I’m afraid these days most vinyl begins as digital. I’m sure there are some newer records that were pressed from magnetic tape, but I would be willing to bet most new vinyl was pressed from digital files. Also, remember that record players come with sounds that are not a part of the music. There are pops, cracks and the whirring of the needle against the vinyl. Audiophiles say this is part of the character of vinyl and I agree. It doesn’t distract from the music, it adds to it in my opinion. So yes, there is the classic vinyl sound you expect, but is that more desirable than digital? Only you can decide that.
The TT100BK retails for $149.99 and includes 808 Audio’s free shipping on items over $30. I think this is a decent deal considering the built in pre-amp, the Bluetooth capabilities, and the cool light show you get. Of course, you will have to supply your own speakers if you want to listen to your vinyl, as there are no built-in speakers on this turntable.
Whether you want to try vinyl for the first time or are looking to revisit the good old days, the 808 Audio Wireless Streaming Turntable is a good choice. It gives you everything you would expect from a classic turntable along with some modern technology as well. You have to supply the speakers and the vinyl, but I think the experience is well worth it.