Pro-Ject 1Xpression Carbon

Manual belt-drive turntable with pre-mounted cartridge

Item #: 252XPRSSNC

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Expressive sound, classic looks

Job one for any turntable is to provide smooth and stable rotation for your records. Pro-Ject's 1Xpression Carbon delivers in spades. This solid, refined player quietly maintains accurate playback speed with minimal wow and flutter, letting the music flow from your LPs with realism and clarity. You'll experience a wide, deep soundstage with instruments and vocals that fill the room. Careful design and beefy construction give the 1Xpression Carbon excellent isolation from vibration, creating silent backgrounds and powerful dynamics.

Precision-built for high performance

The 1Xpression Carbon boasts a high-performance, one-piece carbon fiber tonearm that helps reduce unwanted resonance that can color sound. The arm's innovative low-friction gimbal bearing features a resonance-damping counterweight, and offers excellent compatibility with future cartridge upgrades. A damped, heavy steel platter provides excellent speed stability as it spins on a precision chrome-plated stainless steel and bronze bearing for smooth rotation and ultra-quiet operation. The decoupled, sorbothane-damped motor mount and belt drive system physically isolate vibration from the chassis to prevent motor noise from being audible through your sound system. An external power supply helps reduce the chance of hum and noise, and features an ultra-precise, DC-driven AC generator for enhanced speed accuracy. Finally, the 1Xpression Carbon's MDF chassis rests on damped cone feet for a solid, low-resonance foundation.

Get the best sound without the hassle

One of the great things about vinyl records is that they force you to slow down and become more actively involved in the process of listening. But Pro-Ject's 1Xpression Carbon won't slow you down much, because of its hassle-free plug 'n' play design. Pro-Ject knows that turntable setup can be a challenge for the novice. That's why this 'table comes out of the box virtually ready to play. Its factory-mounted tonearm and phono cartridge take the guesswork out of getting started, so you can enjoy optimized sound quality with minimal effort. A few minutes to dial in key settings like tracking force, anti-skating, and platter speed are all that's needed to experience the superior performance that's waiting for you on your favorite records.

Product Highlights:

  • one-piece carbon fiber tonearm with advanced bearing structure and damped, large-diameter counterweight for superior rigidity and reduced resonance
  • includes pre-mounted Sumiko Oyster moving magnet cartridge
  • damped heavy steel platter with supplied felt and cork mats provides excellent speed stability and protects records from scratches
  • precision chrome-plated stainless steel and bronze bearing system for smooth, quiet platter rotation
  • medium density fiberboard (MDF) base with damped cone feet
  • low-noise AC motor decoupled from base for reduced vibration transmission and better sound
  • manual operation with silicone-damped tonearm lift
  • 33-1/3 and 45 rpm speeds (manual speed change)
  • speed variance: 0.2% at 33 RPM, 0.18% at 45 RPM
  • wow and flutter: 0.14% at 33 RPM, 0.13% at 45 RPM
  • gold-plated RCA and ground terminal connectors (cable included)
  • external power supply with ultra-precise DC-driven AC generator for speed stability
  • weight: 12.13 lbs.
  • 16-3/8"W x 5"H (with dust cover down) x 13-1/8"D
  • warranty: 2 years (1 year warranty for the supplied cartridge)
  • Our 60-day money-back guarantee
  • requires a phono preamp or phono input on receiver or preamplifier

Pro-Ject 1Xpression Carbon Reviews

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So far, so great

Written By SiddFinch, North Georgia on Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Crutchfield Customer Review (What's this?)

Two weeks in and this product has exceeded expectations. After about a year first considering a turntable, then researching and finally shopping, my initial thought was to get a well-regarded vintage turntable, but after some research decided against it. Initially considered the more entry-level Pro-Ject turntables offered at Crutchfield, but moved up the product line and settled on the Pro-Ject 1Xpression Carbon. Most agree that Pro-Ject delivers very high quality per dollar.

Setup was straightforward enough. It took a second on one or two different occasions to understand what the instructions were getting at, but that is as easily on me as on the instructions. I tend to move deliberately, and with all of that it was maybe 30 minutes to unpack everything and have it ready to go.

The instructions recommend a tracking downforce of 18 mN for the Sumiko Oyster (installed.) After a few plays, I backed it off to 17.5 mN, which I think sounds better, but time will tell as it does take many more hours of play for a cartridge to break-in. From what I have read, cartridge break-in is real, whereas break-in of other components is dubious.

Without entering in to the whole analog/digital recording/playback argument, I will say that the old vinyl sounds amazing. It's been more than 25 years since I played any of it, with nearly all of the recordings since re-purchased on CD. The sound is detailed, full and lively from top to bottom. I expect to be primarily vinyl for quite some time.

Pros: Price, quality, sound, ease of setup, Crutchfield service.

Cons: Nothing real so far.

Hands-on research

What's in the box?

Download owner's manual

  • Turntable base (tone-arm and Sumiko Oyster cartridge installed)
  • Hub (installed)
  • Steel platter (installed)
  • AC power adapter (w/ attached 6.5' DC cord)
  • 3 AC plug adapters (US/UK/EU)
  • Drive belt
  • Dust cover
  • Cork mat
  • Felt mat
  • 47" Stereo RCA audio cable (with ground wire)
  • Counter weight
  • Anti-skate weight
  • 45 RPM adapter
  • 3 Metal weights
  • Bracket
  • Plastic hook tool
  • Instructions for Use
  • Two-Point Cartridge Alignment Protractor

Features and Specs

Operation Manual
Speeds 33, 45
Cartridge Type MM
Phono Preamp No
USB Output No
Pitch Control No
45 RPM Adapter Yes
Signal to Noise Ratio Not given
Wow and Flutter 0.14

Product Research


Belt Driven: A quiet running AC motor with a two-step pulley drives the hub and platter via a flat-ground belt for effective speed stability. The 1-Xpression Carbon supports 33-1/3 and 45 rpm speeds.

  • Speed Variance: 0.2% (33 RPM), 0.18% (45 RPM)
  • Wow & Flutter: 0.14% (33 RPM), 0.13% (45 RPM)

Sandwiched Construction Platter: The 1-Xpression Carbon turntable features a 11.875" "sandwiched construction" platter made from advanced thermo plastic elastomers (TPE) and steel alloy for optimized resonance behavior. The platter bearing axle is made from low tolerance chrome plated stainless steel running on a Teflon bottom in bronze bearing housing. Supplied felt and cork mats provide excellent speed stability and protects records from scratches.

MDF Plinth: The medium density fiber (MDF) plinth stands on four height-adjustable damped cone feet. The turntable should be positioned on a low-resonance surface such as wood or multiple layer ply-board to avoid structural vibrations disturbing replay.

Decoupled Motor & External Power Supply The motor is decoupled from the plinth to reduce vibration transmission. The 1-Xpression Carbon also utilizes an external power supply to avoid potential electro-mechanical interference.

RCA Connection with Grounding Screw: Connection to the phono input of your amplifier can be made with connecting cables of your choice through the turntable's gold-plated stereo RCA phono jacks and grounding screw. The Pro-Ject turntable comes supplied with a 47" stereo RCA cable with ground wire.

Carbon Tone-arm w/ Counterweight: The 1-Xpression Carbon features a 8.6" one-piece carbon tone-arm. The conical-shaped carbon-fiber arm-tube avoids standing wave reflections. The tone-arm's inverted bearings consist of four hardened stainless steel points. Its solid arm-base permits accurate height adjustment of the arm-tube and VTA (vertical tracing angle). The tone-arm's flexible counterweight shaft avoids vibration at undesirable frequencies. The counterweight reduces cantilever forces and dynamic wow when playing warped records. The counterweight is suitable for cartridges weighing between 0.25-0.42 oz.

MM-Cartridge: The turntable is supplied with a Sumiko Oyster MM-cartridge. This moving magnet phono cartridge features an alloy cantilever, bonded spherical stylus, and 4.0 mV output. If your amplifier does not have a suitable Phono MM input, you will need a separate phono pre-amplifier (sold separately) to connect the turntable to your amplifier.

Dust Cover: The Pro-Ject 1-Xpression Carbon comes supplied with a dust cover to prevent dust build-up on the turntable.

Internal Wiring: The turntable's internal wiring consists of flexible high-purity copper from the headshell right through to the gold-plated phono sockets.

Our Product Research Team

At Crutchfield, you'll get detailed, accurate information that's hard to find elsewhere. That's because we have our own in-house Product Research team. They verify what’s in the box, check the owner's manual, and record dimensions, features and specs. We stay on top of new products and technologies to help people make informed choices.