We sold our vinyl and gave our turntable away several years ago and since then used CD's and streaming for our musical pleasure. We decided recently to return to vinyl. As we had not purchased a turntable since the mid-1980's, we were sort of at a loss where to start. Armed with Crutchfield's article "How to Choose the Best Turntable," we eventually selected the Pro-Ject X1. We've had it now for about two weeks and could not be more satisfied. To start with, the packaging is top notch. Short of it falling out of a moving vehicle and being run over by another, there is no way this thing was going to be damaged in transit. The gloves are a nice touch. The entire time we were unpacking everything, we hoped we would not have to return it. Unpacking the unit, we noticed how well-built and hefty it is. Fit and finish is superb. Setting up the turntable was a bit challenging, but with Crutchfield's tech support, we worked through it. We first thought it was odd that the cables provided are only four feet in length and about two feet short for our application. We then learned that the four-foot length is industry standard and maybe even a little longer. We now have accumulated a few albums and they sound amazing. We had forgotten how warm vinyl can sound. We have also acclimated to the manual part of the process. We recommend the Pro-Ject X1 highly.
Pros: Packaging, good value, build, fit and finish, looks, amazing sound.
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Initially I had purchased the Pro-ject Debut Carbon Esprit in Walnut finish, but it was out of stock (which I knew beforehand) and the Pandemic made the wait longer than it was supposed to be (completely understandable), so I got impatient and decided to go with the X1 instead and do an upgrade to my budget and expectations as well. So when I got the X1 and started unpacking I was excited to see the beautiful craft that went into this piece. The walnut finish (MFM) looks amazing and the turntable feels solid and well put together. I'm by no means an expert on sound quality, but this is an amazing sounding turntable. I had a pretty basic audio-technica turntable before this one, so it's BIG jump for me. I can say my records sounds way cleaner now. Now I will need to upgrade my speakers to really be able to take advantage of everything this turntable can do. So, if you are thinking of getting the Esprit Walnut and are still waiting on it to be available during this Pandemic... just go for the X1, you won't regret it, it has a lot of upgrades that make the additional $300 completely worth it. I also was impressed by Crutchfield's (and UPS) quick turnaround. I purchased it Friday at 4pm and Saturday at 11am it was at my doorstep ready for the long Memorial Day Weekend, so instead of going to Lake Ozarks and expose myself to CoVid.. I stayed safely home, listening to great music. Thank you Crutchfield!
Pros: Craft Materials Needle Sound Features not typically found in similar price-range turntables
Cons: None so far.
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