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Home tools Buyer's Guides from tech enthusiast who loves technology and clever solutions for better living.
Home tools Buyer's Guides from tech enthusiast who loves technology and clever solutions for better living.
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Top Of The Best Bookshelf Albums Reviewed In 2018Last Updated March 1, 2019
№1 – Fabric Frame Cover Photo Album 200 Pockets Hold 4×6 Photos, Sky Blue
№2 – MCS 100 Pocket Big Max Embossed Family Album, Green (823364)
№3 – Pioneer Photo 200-Pocket Coil Bound Photo Album for 4 by 6-Inch Prints, Burgundy Leatherette with Gold Accents Cover
So you want to start a record collection.
Are you sure? You know that music has never been freer or easier to get in the history of the world, right? You do? Okay, just checking.
Why do people buy vinyl? (Photo by Cyrus McCrimmon/The Denver Post)
Keep in mind that if you opt for a turntable without a pre-amp, like Project’s Debut Carbon, you’ll also have to buy a dedicated pre-amp.
Like photography, record collecting is a hobby with an endless aisle of accessories. Similarly, some are essential and others are only for die-hard obsessives. Below, our list of extras that can help you get the most out of your music.
Cabinets are far from essential if you have a bookshelf, but storing your records properly is important. Record cabinets are designed to store your albums vertically, which prevents damage that can result from being stacked on top of one another. Depending on how fancy you want to get, you can get a simple container from Ikea or a sleek custom cabinet from a woodworker. Obviously this is an aesthetic choice, and has no bearing on performance. + Only handle records by their edges. + Always keep the dust cover closed when a record is playing. + Clean each side of your record before use.*
Ten must-own records
Choosing a favorite record is like choosing a significant other. Even a friend you normally respect and consider kin is liable to have wildly different, head-scratching taste. Picking ten we can all agree on is impossible, so the omissions here will be as glaring to some as the inclusions. If we missed your favorite, please forgive us. (And maybe leave it in the
Some people don’t want to mess around with a bunch of wires and separate devices. We get it. You just want to hear your burgeoning vinyl collection in all of its glory. With internal amplification and built-in phono pre-amp, the new R-15PM powered monitors are the best option for someone looking for the easiest way to hook up their turntable properly. These are the new standards in record player speakers.
Maybe you haven’t notice – or don’t care – but vinyl isn’t cheap. We completely understand if you want to spend more on your album collection rather than speakers for your record player. The R-14M bookshelf speakers from the Reference series will deliver a surprising amount of output, filling your room with any record you please. Everyone could use a little more copper and black in their life.
Who should get this
Bookshelf speakers are great for anyone who enjoys listening to music and is willing to tolerate a bit more complexity in the setup than with typical Bluetooth speakers or whole-home audio systems. Bookshelf speakers can also perform almost identically to much larger tower speakers, with the exception of the lowest bass octaves, where a tower’s additional drivers kick in. You can remedy this shortcoming by adding a subwoofer, and in many cases the resulting setup will outperform a set of tower speakers.
A pair of passive bookshelf speakers will never become obsolete.
Used with a receiver, bookshelf speakers let you listen to your audio sources in full resolution. Unlike most wireless models, they aren’t limited to CD resolution, since you can connect any device to your receiver’s inputs. You can enjoy analog playback from vinyl, high-resolution digital audio from a computer or a media server, lossless Blu-ray soundtracks, and streaming content, of course—just hook up the source of your choice.
Even if you listen exclusively to streaming audio sources such as Spotify, a stereo setup using bookshelf speakers might still be better than wireless speakers. For instance, you can choose a stereo receiver that provides integrated Spotify or Bluetooth support, like the NAD D 3020 or Yamaha R-N30Or you can integrate the speakers into a Sonos setup with a Connect:Amp or use them in a home theater system.
A good set of speakers is an investment that will last longer than any other tech purchase. A pair of passive bookshelf speakers will never become obsolete. Speakers from 30 years ago still work today, after all, and you can find many people still using speakers from over 50 years ago, with modern electronics to power them. While modern speakers may benefit from advances in driver and crossover design, an older speaker will usually still work and will probably last longer than any other piece of gear you could buy today.
Who else likes our pick
What Hi-Fi gave the Q Acoustics 3020 set a perfect five-star rating and an award in 201for the best stereo speaker under £200. The reviewers found nothing to complain about with the performance for the price.
Ed Selley of AVForums was also a fan, giving the 3020 set a Highly Recommended award with an overall score of nine out of In his review, Selley writes that the speakers could offer more bass but says the set is well-built, easy to drive, and good sounding.
Flaws but not dealbreakers
The Q Acoustics 3020 set does not play as deep down as some competitors, but people after extra bass will do much better to pair these speakers with a budget subwoofer anyway. Most people won’t have an issue with the bass response, though.
If the Q Acoustics set is unavailable, the ELAC Debut Bpair is a close runner-up (and our previous pick). In our tests the sound quality was virtually the same as that of the Q Acoustics set, but the ELAC pair had slightly better bass response. The Bspeakers are also physically larger, their veneer finish is not as polished, and they are less efficient (so a receiver or amplifier will need around 30 percent more power to drive them as loudly).
The Bspeakers are larger than some other bookshelf models, and the finish isn’t attractive, but this set is a terrific value. And if you want to upgrade later to a surround-sound system, you can add a matching center channel, towers, or even Atmos modules.
Music sounds more refined and defined through the Q150 set compared with cheaper models; you could easily listen to these speakers for hours without your ears growing fatigued. During complex test tracks like Beck’s “Lost Cause,” the Q150 set made it easy for us to pick out individual instruments—even easier than with our top pick. On tracks like “Giorgio by Moroder” from Daft Punk, the Q150 pair managed to reproduce the bass line with depth and detail missing from other speakers. Overall this set captured more of the music than the less expensive speakers did.
The Q150 set comes in white or black finish, and KEF sells a matching center-channel speaker. Magnetic grills, to protect the speakers from kids and pets, are optional.
Each LS50 speaker includes a Uni-Q driver, similar to that of the KEF Q150 but a higher-end version. The Uni-Q driver here is made of a magnesium-aluminum alloy instead of standard aluminum as in the Q150. In general, the LS50 model ranks far beyond other speakers in build quality, as it’s very heavy and more solid, with virtually no resonance when you knock on the cabinet. The LS50 pair is the best bookshelf speaker set we listened to. It’s expensive, but it offers an audible difference.
The Pioneer SP-BS22-LR speakers did sound a bit dark—in our tests, voices and other instruments could sound muted, as if they were coming from behind a screen. In addition, the finish of these Pioneer speakers looks bland, with a faux wood grain and curved sides, and the cabinet feels lightweight and hollow overall.
This Pioneer set is the best option for the price, but stepping up provides easily noticeable benefits.
The Cambridge Audio Aero speakers were more compact than the other speakers we tried, and they sounded like it. The bass was quieter than the treble and midrange, and this pair was simply not as clear and defined as the larger bookshelf units.
The ELAC UBpair offered very good bass response and detail, but with a smaller soundstage. These speakers also had a less attractive finish and were harder to drive than some other models.
The Fluance XL7S pair produced a good soundstage but lacked bass, and the treble might be too bright for some listeners.
Micca’s MB42X set is small and compact, but in our tests this pair sounded poor next to all of the other contenders. The bass was lacking because of the small woofer, and the treble had a harsh, metallic sound. Beck’s voice during “Lost Cause” sounded different here than on everything else, as if the tonal balance of the speakers was wrong.
The Monitor Audio Bronze pair offered good bass response and a large soundstage, but the treble was muted next to that of other speakers. Instead of having too much treble, this set had too little compared with the midrange and bass, and it could make recordings sound dull as a result.
Monoprice’s Monolith K-BAS speakers use a bass port design that allows for extended response. They’re fairly tall black boxes that aren’t attractive, and while the bass was there in our tests, it wasn’t tight or detailed. Recordings sometimes sounded hollow, as if recorded inside a box.
Polk Audio’s RTI Aspeakers produced a large soundstage and lots of detail, but they had a particularly bright, forward treble that over time became hard to tolerate.
The Polk Audio TSi100 pair would have been our clear pick for an affordable speaker set if the company had not discontinued this model. In our tests this pair’s soundstage was more open than that of our Pioneer budget pick, with more clarity and very good bass. If you can find the TSi100 set, it’s a very good choice.
The Q Acoustics 2020i pair is compact but has an odd, awkward design. You connect the speaker cables on the bottom of each speaker, which can theoretically hide them but also might make these units hard to use on smaller speaker stands or other surfaces.
The Q Acoustics Concept 20 speakers had bright, clear treble but lacked authority in the bass department. The build quality is great, but we don’t see much need for bi-wiring speakers in this price range, and the included binding post connectors made it hard for us to use some banana plugs we had.
The SVS Ultra Bookshelf speakers’ extra-large, 6½-inch woofers produced a room-filling bass that the other speakers simply could not touch. This SVS pair’s bass went deeper, had better definition, and helped the speakers create a larger soundstage than their rivals mustered. If your tastes run more toward rock or hip-hop and less toward jazz or other acoustic music, or if you want impact from movie soundtracks without a subwoofer, the SVS set might be your best option. But most listeners will get more out of the KEF Q150’s superior midrange and treble performance.
Wharfedale’s Diamond 220 set had good detail and nice bass but sounded boxed in. These speakers produced a soundstage that was narrow and confined to the center of the room, while other speakers created a more expansive stereo image. Aside from the soundstage, the quality of the sound was good, and we liked the build of the speakers, but we all preferred a sound that was more open.
With its clean, minimalist design, Beacon Sound has the air of an art gallery, which might also owe to the fact that it’s connected to one. Either way, it belies the shop’s focus, which, while stocking the usual of-the-moment indie stuff, tilts avant-garde. On a recent visit, customers milled around the counter discussing Steve Reich and John Cage while crazy-making free jazz spilled from the store speakers. No one will judge you for only buying the new Sufjan, though. Not out loud, anyway. MATTHEW P. SINGER.
Jump Jump Music
700NE Prescott St., 284-482Noon-pm Monday-Friday.
Jump Jump Music is one of the oldest record joints in Portland, with an emphasis on hip-hop, soul and jazz. While the store looks like something out of Hoarders, cluttered with boxes and dusty memorabilia, the records are intensely organized and the owner knows his stuff. ASHLEY JOCZ.
Little Axe Records
501NE 28th Ave., 320-365Noon-pm Wednesday-Monday.
Tucked inside a quaint Victorian house, Little Axe Records is a hidden gem in the Alberta neighborhood. While the store doesn’t boast much square footage, it’s got an extensive and in-depth collection of classics, hits, rarities and old Southern gospel. Displaying such records as Mississippi Delta Blues, Vol. and the Endless Summer soundtrack, the store caters to every level of record geek. There’s an extensive cassette collection as well. AJ.
Read the Manual
It’s a small detail, but you may be confronted with having to choose between a manual or automatic record player. Neither of these is superior to the other, they just provide different options. An automatic record player will both place and remove the needle. A manual turntable will require you to do both. The best choice is probable a semi-automatic solution where you can place the needle, but it automatically goes back to home position when the record is over.
The main reason lower-end players tend to be automatic is because people new to vinyls are often scared that they will scratch their records. It takes a bit of practice to place a needle into the groove consistently, but with a little practice (on an old and cheap record!) you’ll get it in no time.
Jacket- things to look for are ring wear- when the jacket starts to visibly wear around the vinyl inside, mold- usually from being stored in a damp basement for years, seam splits- when the seams, uh, split, and general wear and tear including anything from water damage to writing (usually the original owner’s name). The good news, for the beginning collector, is that a record with clean vinyl and a damaged jacket will often sell for much less than an all around very good to near mint record. Which brings us to…
Grading- if you start buying records you will start to encounter grading. This can be especially important if you are buying online. Since you can’t inspect the record in person, and condition is critical in determining what you will pay for a record, you will have to rely on trusted sellers that adhere to standardized grading. Most sellers follow the Goldmine grading standards which you can find here. In general I would recommend only buying records with a VG+ or better grade for the vinyl and then relying on the pictures and description for the jacket. Still, always assume what you are buying is probably a grade lower than what is listed. VG+ means the vinyl looks and plays well. Not like new but pretty close.
Also, it is important to make sure you are comparing apples to apples in terms of pressing and condition. So on to pressings…
You will spend years collecting vinyl and still have trouble determining a true “first” press. But over time you will build a sense for pressings. If the album is originally from the 60s then the original vinyl was pretty thick, the record label looks nicely dated, might even have a street address, the jacket is thicker cardboard (unless UK/Europe then it will be really thin and glossy), the sleeve will show albums from the same time period (if the sleeve has stuff from the 70s then chances are it’s a re-press from the 70s). If it is mono then it is almost always an original or early pressing. Mono wasn’t regularly pressed except for AM radio after 196or so. One really simple rule of thumb is- vintage pressings (pre late 70s) will NEVER have a bar code on the jacket.
Earlier pressings are generally more valuable for a few reasons. They sound better, they “feel” better (the heavy vinyl, etc) and they often have details to the artwork that later pressings dropped for reasons of expense, etc. For instance, the original pressings of Neil Young’s “Harvest” and “Tonight’s The Night” albums have jackets that are soft and almost furry and have a big inside lyric sheet (as do many of his original vinyl releases). Later pressings are shiny and don’t always have that big lyric sheet. When you compare those two records, visually and sonically, you can really appreciate the original and that’s why it costs more. The further you get from the source, generally speaking, the less authentic the experience.
Vintage or New
Vintage and used gear can be a great option for buyers on a budget, as most high-quality home-audio equipment was built like a tank and designed to last for decades, says Geoffrey Bennett, sales manager at Decibel Audio in Chicago. “In lower price brackets, vintage will usually give you better quality,” Bennett says. But buyers should consider the cost and viability of getting their vintage gear serviced and cleaned. “A receiver that’s been sitting in someone’s garage for 30 years is going to need some sprucing up,” he adds. Other considerations include the availability of parts and the cost and effort of having the gear serviced in the future.
In lower price brackets, vintage will usually give you better quality, but buyers should consider the cost and viability of getting their vintage gear serviced and cleaned.”
New gear will offer fewer choices, especially if you’re shopping at local big box stores, which tend to feature surround-sound home theater systems that aren’t optimal for two-channel audio playback. It does, however, offer some distinct advantages, Marra says.
New equipment likely will come with a warranty and user support, Marra says. It also is likely to be more compact and offer more contemporary features, such as remote control and more inputs for computers, iPhones and other digital devices.
The beauty of home stereo equipment is that you can mix and match vintage and new components. So if Grandpa gives you a sweet vintage turntable, you can connect it to a modern amplifier. Both vintage and new equipment are cool in their own right, Marra says.
Audio-Technica AT-LP120 USB
Audio-Technica’s AT-LP120 is a direct-drive turntable that can connect to external devices (like mixers or computers) via USB or analogue. It’s handy if you’re looking to both listen to your old record collection and digitize it for on-the-go listening or backups.
The turntable can be toggled in forward or reverse easily, has a pitch control slider on the side (+/-10%-20%), hinged dust cover, selectable 33/45/7RPM speed modes, a cast aluminium platter (with Audio-Technica slipmats, of course), and all the cables and connectors you need to get it hooked up to your stereo, mixer or computer.
It features a low-vibration, belt-driven motor with manual speed adjustments so you can really dial in the rotation where you want it. The tonearm is hand crafted and the special “Rega Carbon” magnetic cartridge is designed to complete a high-quality package that delivers great sound at a reasonable price. Best of all Rega notes that their attention to design extends to the longevity of their products, and that you can buy one of these and enjoy it for years without having to worry about replacing parts.
Sell Vintage & Antiques
Whether you bought antiques that you’re looking to pass on or have some of your own that you’re ready to put up for sale, Dibs is your place. All you have to do is take a photo of the item, add a category, price, and brief description, and it’s up for sale. You can also search for nearby items on sale if you’re looking to purchase a new antique.
You can’t sell used makeup, but if you have brushes, palettes, or even samples in sellable condition, Glambot is the place to go. Just request a free shipping label online and send in your products. The site will send you cash, or you can accept shopping credit.
Sell Kitchen Items
If you were gifted a glass bowl by your cousin that you’ll never use or have silverware you no longer need, sell it on Trove Marketplace (free on iOS). The app also lets you list used furniture, electronics, and art, making it good for a clean-out before your next move.
Sell Vintage & Luxury
Looking to sell that vintage purse in your closet, or a pair of designer kicks that you splurged on? The RealReal does all the work for you. The app will pick up your item or send you a free shipping label, photograph, and post your goods online, and send you up to 70% of the earnings.
Sell Concert & Festival Tickets
You bought that ticket to Kanye because you knew it would sell out in seconds. But now that the concert is days away, you realize that shelling out hundreds for a show you don’t really want to see might not be worth it. Luckily, you can post your tickets (for free) on Nearo. The app, free on iOS, makes it easy to exchange your ticket for one to a different show, or get a refund for the full amount.
For buying or selling a cool pair of kicks, head to Goat on iOS or Android. Goat is a polished marketplace exclusively for sneakers. Just take some photos of your pair and set the price. Once they’re purchased, the app will even send a prepaid shipping label, so shipping is painless. But, with over 27,000 sneakers onboard, be careful — you might end up buying a new pair, too.
Sell Your Car
The thought of the cash we’d get from selling our cars makes our wallets do a happy dance, but the thought of dealing with the hassle of haggling and meeting potential buyers makes us want to crawl under the covers. Beepi makes the whole experience super simple and streamlined. Beepi has some strict restrictions with regards to the condition and age of the cars it will accept, but if your car fits the bill, the company will send an inspector to check it out — and then send you an estimated sale price. From there, it guarantees to sell your car in 30 days or less — or it will buy the car from you.
Have A Virtual Garage Sale
Or, you can go with a Craigslist alternative that just focuses on letting you sell your old stuff (and buy cheap things from other sellers).
Letgo is exactly like a phone-based garage sale, minus the need for a garage. You can find everything from old phones to gently worn clothing to a saddle for a horse. Wallapop is another alternative on this front, and it boasts 1million users. Both apps let you sell and search for bargains within your geographic area.
To get your old stuff in front of the most eyes, you could try posting listings on both apps.
Sell Anything On Your Phone
You have your phone with you at all times, so it’s way easier to create your own mini marketplace there. And you can, with the Mercari app. The app lets you quickly upload a picture of the item you’re looking to sell (everything from clothes to electronics), a description, the condition, your preferred shipping, and price. You can even get a fixed, low-rate shipping label straight from Mercari. Create a profile of your goods, like you would on a social-media app, so that if someone likes an item you’re selling, they can take a look at what else you’re getting rid of.
However, it’s a lot more hassle: Writing the listing, photographing the items, reading and replying to responses, and then coordinating meeting and payment. Whenever possible, go somewhere public to make the handoff; if that’s not reasonable, make sure to have a friend or partner around so you’re not alone.
An alternative to Craigslist is Nextdoor, a private neighborhood-based social network. It’s a great place to meet your neighbors, keep abreast of issues in your community, and buy or sell goods with people who live nearby. Since everyone has an account — and, you could see them around the hood — the icky security concerns of Craigslist aren’t such a big deal.
Sell Children’s Clothing
Kids grow so fast, that adorable onesie you purchased could become unwearable in a matter of months. To save money (or make a few bucks) you can buy and sell from gently used children’s clothing marketplace Totspot. Totspot, which includes clothing for adults now, too, lets you browse a variety of items — from swimwear to dresses to winter jackets — and buy them at a fraction of the retail cost. The app takes a 20% cut off profits from sellers, and if you want to sell but don’t have the time to do the legwork, you can use its Concierge service so other parents can sell on your behalf.
Studio monitor glossary
Whether you’re recording and mixing a big project or simply want to record your voice and guitar in your home studio, a set of studio reference monitors are essential. A good set of monitors will let you hear what you record with accurate detail. But before you buy a set of monitors, you most likely have some questions: What differentiates studio monitors from everyday speaker systems? What makes a good monitor? And how should an accurate monitor sound?
This guide will help you answer these and other questions so you can find the right set of monitors for your recording needs and budget.
Numbers and specifications
When you’re shopping for monitors you’ll see a lot of numbers, terms, and acronyms such as frequency response, THD, and SPL, as well as more familiar terms like watts and driver sizes. (See the glossary at the end of this guide for full definitions.)
These specs theoretically provide a thumbnail sketch of how the monitor will perform during recording, mixing, and mastering. Some specs are the result of tests conducted by the manufacturer to determine the performance of their products.
While specifications are helpful, keep in mind that the tests that determine specs often are not standardized, so one manufacturer’s 0.01% THD may be another’s 0.3% THD. The information is still useful to you as a prospective buyer as long as you recognize that specs are just a starting point. Ultimately, you have to trust your ears—and those of gear reviewers and fellow musicians. There’s no substitute for careful, critical listening. Reading reviews both by experts and users can help you hone in on your best options.
Since you want accuracy from your monitors, one of the first things you will want to confirm is that they can handle the full frequency range of your recordings. Most monitor specs list the lowest frequency they handle in Hz (hertz) and the highest frequency in kHz (kilohertz). For most recording work a frequency response of 50Hz-20kHz is adequate. As we’ll discuss a little later, the overall frequency range may be a little less critical than the monitor’s ability to reproduce all those frequencies without distortion or variations.
Musicians on tight monitor budgets give the JBL LSR 30high marks for its accurate and powerful output.
Before you decide that a monitor is worthy based on its frequency range, keep in mind that this specification on its own doesn’t tell you how the monitor will handle frequencies. Sure, the monitor you’re looking at can handle a range from say 40Hz-21kHz, but how can you be sure it will reproduce those frequencies relatively evenly?
You want to see an indication of how much variation there will be across the frequency range. This is expressed in decibels. So, for instance, if a monitor’s frequency range spec is listed as 40Hz-21kHz ± 2dB, that indicates that some frequencies may be louder or softer by as much as decibels at various points across the full range.
For most applications, a rating of ± dB or less will provide well balanced sound.
If you work with bass-heavy music such as hip-hop or EDM, or work with 5.or 7.surround sound mixes, you might want to consider a studio subwoofer, which will handle frequencies down to 30Hz or lower.
The JBL LSR310S Studio Subwoofer reaches way down to 27Hz to help you mix your low-frequency material with accuracy.
Charles Sprinkle of JBL offers a rundown of the LSR310’s powerful performance.
While it’s usually not as much of a concern for studio situations, the power of your studio monitors, measured in watts, might be a specification to consider particularly for larger rooms or studios. Generally, 10-60 watts should be plenty for a bedroom or home office-sized studio. Larger rooms and mid-sized studios may require more than that. With powered monitors that contain their own onboard amplifiers, manufacturers match wattage to each driver for optimal performance across the driver’s frequency range.
Aside from deciding whether you need a powered or unpowered monitor (more on that below), your main concern should be the types of connections it has. Check the inputs offered by the monitor to make sure they will work with your existing equipment. For connections, monitors usually have 1/4″, TRS, XLR, RCA, or S/PDIF jacks. Some offer only unbalanced or balanced inputs, and some have both.
Improve your connections IQ with our Cable Buying Guide.
Powered Studio Monitors
Powered studio monitors, sometimes referred to as active monitors, are by far the most popular choice for project and home studios. By housing their own amplifiers they eliminate the need for an external amp to drive them. Many are bi-amplified—each speaker has its own dedicated power amp designed to handle its frequency range, thus allowing the speaker to function optimally.
The Yamaha HSPowered Studio Monitor uses bi-amplification to individually power the low- and high-frequency drivers.
Take a quick video tour of Yamaha’s HS Series studio monitors.
Unpowered Studio Monitors
While they don’t offer the convenience of powered units, unpowered studio monitors, also called passive monitors, have their own advantages. Because they require a separate, external power amp, these monitors gives you some flexibility in choosing your components and setting up multi-speaker arrays. They also usually have crossover circuitry for splitting of high and low frequencies.
Additionally, for those who already have a power amplifier for their studio, unpowered speakers may offer a price advantage since their cost does not factor in an onboard amp.
The unpowered Avantone Mixcube is a popular choice for determining how your music will sound when played back on smaller, consumer-grade audio equipment.
Studio Monitor Volume Controllers
If you are serious about getting great sound from your mix, you may have multiple monitor pairs set up in your studio. You might use both mid- and near-field monitors in your home studio for different points of reference. Or maybe you want to switch from the accuracy of your studio monitors to see how your recording will sound on a consumer-grade stereo system.
If any of these situations apply to you, you’ll want a good studio volume controller that will let you quickly and easily balance levels between monitors and switch between speaker sets. Make sure you find one that will accommodate the number of speaker outputs you’ll need. And if you will be switching between audio sources, make sure the controller has this capability built in as well. You’ll find a number of monitor controller options here.
The Mackie Big Knob Passive Monitor Controller is a control room tool that combines level control, monitor switching, and source selection, and includes talkback functions.
Four Basic Laws of Vinyl Storage
Store in a temperature-controlled space: By now you’ve probably seen those little Pinterest bowls made of vinyl records heated in an oven over a bowl. Sure, they’re cute – until you accidentally make one of your own by storing vinyl in a hot attic, your car or even the garage. Vinyl does best at around 6to 70 degrees, so keep it inside with you in a cool, dry place to prevent warping and moldy covers.
Avoid proximity to heat sources: When choosing a place to store your records, avoid anywhere that’s close to direct sunlight or a radiator or heat source. Even if your collection is lovingly displayed indoors, heat from any of these things can just as easily damage your records.
Never stack your records: Creating album piles is a cardinal sin of vinyl collecting. Always store your records upright, as even leaning them heavily on one another can create too much pressure, causing your records to warp or scratch. Plus, when you want to find one to play, it’s much easier and less damaging to just slide one out than to have to dig through an entire stack.
Replace old and damaged sleeves: It’s usually recommended that you remove the plastic wrap from records as soon as you get them so it doesn’t shrink or damage the album cover. You’ll also want to keep some acid-free plastic inner sleeves handy so you can replace damaged or moldy ones and keep your collection as clean and safe as possible.
Whether it’s a cubed shelf or a bench like the one pictured above (found on Apartment Therapy), open-faced cubes make a perfect nest for your albums, as they divide them into groups and prevent the pressure that comes from one long line of leaning LPs.
The Drawer Method
Also found on Apartment Therapy, these drawers by designer Kenneth Brown are enough to make any audiophile drool. Whether you have something built in like this or you just find a properly sized filing cabinet, organizing vinyl in drawers is another great option. The only downside of this one is that you can’t easily see the records’ spines so you have to thumb through them from the top (unless you have something like Brown’s design that features a clear front).
Even if this photo from House to Home doesn’t seem like a reality for you, consider finding a bookshelf or open space where you can store your records in a library-like fashion. This is a definite plus for accessibility, practicality and organization.
First of all thanks for reading my article to the end! I hope you find my reviews listed here useful and that it allows you to make a proper comparison of what is best to fit your needs and budget. Don’t be afraid to try more than one product if your first pick doesn’t do the trick.
Most important, have fun and choose your Bookshelf Albums wisely! Good luck!
So, TOP3 of Bookshelf Albums
- №1 — Fabric Frame Cover Photo Album 200 Pockets Hold 4×6 Photos, Sky Blue
- №2 — MCS 100 Pocket Big Max Embossed Family Album, Green (823364)
- №3 — Pioneer Photo 200-Pocket Coil Bound Photo Album for 4 by 6-Inch Prints, Burgundy Leatherette with Gold Accents Cover