The Pro-Ject Essential turntable is exactly that. A turntable that gives you the basics to play records, with no superfluous frills.
Features With Quality
It is available in two versions. One with phono USB output and one without the USB feature. Featured here is the Pro-Ject Essential without the USB output. Click here for the Essential with USB.
This new addition represents a remarkable entry-level turntable, yet aesthetics, sound quality and technical perfection have not been compromised.The resonance-free MDF platter is topped with a felt mat and driven by a super-smooth running AC motor with a two-step pulley, via a silicon belt.
This impressive turntable stands on three cone shaped feet which act as shock absorbers. The eccentrically mounted counterweight reduces cantilever forces and dynamic wow when playing warped records, and the external power supply avoids potential electro-mechanical interference.
Compare the Essential with other turntables around this price and there's simply no comparison. Where rivals use thin, metal platters, plastic plinths and decidedly ordinary bearings, the Essential uses a solid MDF plinth, thick MDF platter and a well engineered bearing. It can play both 33rpm and 45rpm records making it very versatile.
Moving to the tonearm and, again, the Project Essential is leagues ahead of its rivals. A one-piece aluminium arm tube with under-slung counter weight and adjustable bias makes a mockery of the usual, non-adjustable tonearms standard on many turntables of this price. The icing on the cake is a good quality Ortofon OM3 Moving Magnet cartridge that on its own is worth around $90.
In The News
As the major volume-selling player in the world of Turntables, Pro-Ject is always in the hi-fi press:
"The Essential is yet another excellent budget Pro-ject. There's little to complain about here....Details levels are good, and rarely does the turntable sound flustered, even when it's asked to replay something demanding....Considering the price point there's little of substance to criticise here. The Essential is decently made, easy to set-up and sounds great.
You can't ask for much more than that, especially at this price level."
What Hi-Fi Sound & Vision Magazine
So the Essential is built like a proper turntable, but does it sound like one? The answer is a resounding yes! Given its price, the Essential sounds superb and is the perfect first turntable or the ideal way back into playing a treasured vinyl collection. Next to its rivals, the Essential sounds crisp, clean and clear with a surprisingly powerful and deep bass response. If you thought that vinyl sounded thin, scratchy and inferior to CD then this might be the budget turntable to change your mind.
Finished in a tough, matte black paint, the Essential won't win any beauty contests, but it is certainly practical and durable. The standard lid adds further to the no-nonsense approach. At Audio Trends we really love this turntable and once you take a listen to it, we think you will too!
Main Features & Specifications
- Belt drive with low vibration AC-motor
- Silicone drive belt
- Mechanical speed change between 33 and 45
- MDF platter with felt mat
- Chassis made from particle board
- Stainless steel main bearing
- 4-point motor suspension
- Cone-shaped feet
- Straight 8.6’’ tonearm made from aluminium
- Unipivot bearing (stainless steel)
- Excentric counter-weight
- Heavy armbase transfers unwanted vibration
- Pre-mounted Ortofon cartridge
- Arm cable with gold contacts pre-mounted
Note: Features & Specifications Subject To Change Without Notice. E&OE.