Best Clearaudio Turntable: Reviews and Buying Guide

Best Clearaudio Turntable

The resurgence in the popularity of vinyl records has led to an entirely new generation of turntables, especially ones that combine modern style with high-quality sound that can’t be beaten.

Clearaudio has been in the business of making sleek and efficient turntables since 1978, and with their Concept line, they’ve seamlessly merged art and sound. With the right knowledge, a Clearaudio turntable can make your records sound like they were meant to.

Here are our top picks. My favorite is the Concept Wood Turntable because of its solid wood base! Check it out at Amazon.

Best Overall

1. Clearaudio Concept Turntable w/Satisfy Carbon Fiber Tonearm 

The Clearaudio Concept is an award-winning, ultra-refined design that can plug and play right out of the box.

The knob control can switch between 33, 45, and 78 RPM quickly and easily. The premium Concept MC (Moving Coil) comes pre-installed and pre-calibrated for a quality sound that rivals more expensive, high-end turntables.

What We Like

  • High-quality sound for a fraction of the price
  • Easy set-up and can plug and play directly out of the box
  • Sound dampening chassis design, a medium-density fiberboard (MDF) with aluminum trim, and an upper layer incorporating a high-tech, synthetic compound
  • The ultra-low noise performance from the motor, chassis, and tonearm
  • A bevy of awards, including Best Turntable from What Hi-Fi? and Sound and Vision

What We Don’t Like

  • The dust cover comes separately. With a turntable of this quality, you’re going to want to protect it with a dust cover.
  • The MC cartridge produces a lighter, more reticent midrange sound than the MM (Moving Magnet), though only very picky audiophiles may notice.

The Clearaudio Concept Turntable with Satisfy Carbon Fiber Tonearm and MC Cartridge is a sleek, high-quality music player with the aesthetic beauty to match its much higher-priced competitors.

The innovative design of the chassis and motor, and the medium-density wood fiber that contain them, provide a supremely low resonance device that is barely noticeable and will never overshadow your music.

The friction-free tonearm features a magnetic bearing for a superb performance, and the MC Cartridge runs smoother than most on the market. Overall, this is an affordable, beautiful player.

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Best Budget Clearaudio Turntable

2. Clearaudio Concept Turntable .3mv Concept MC Cartridge 

The Clearaudio Concept Turntable with a .3mv MC cartridge pre-installed brings together beauty, affordability, high-end sound, and low-resonance in one smooth and simple device.

The chassis and DC motor are internal, and the medium-density wood fiber dampens their sound to barely a hum. This model does have a lower output than the original, though. Higher built specification phono stages will need to be used to amplify these smaller electrical signals.

What We Like

  • Great quality box and system
  • Concept’s magnetically-poised tonearm provides a smooth play over the record.
  • The lower electrical output means the drive will last longer
  • The lightness of the stylus means better music timing and information playback

What We Don’t Like

  • While the .3mv cartridge is the spotlight of this player, more expensive phono stages are required to use it.
  • The Turntable Clearaudio Dustcover must be purchased separately.
  • Make sure your records are spotless with the lighter stylus to maintain the quality sound with little interference.

The Clearaudio Concept Turntable with a .3mv MC cartridge provides the same high-quality turntable engineering. It adds a lighter stylus that will pick up just about any sound on your record.

This means any dirt on your record will be picked up as interference, so you’ll need to make sure to clean your records first. Do your research on amps and their phono stages as well, since you’ll need high-built specifications to ensure the quality of sound this design was built for.

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Runner Up

3. Clearaudio Concept Turntable with Concept MM V2 Cartridge

The Clearaudio Concept Turntable with MM V2 Cartridge is a beautifully designed, lightweight, simply-designed player that shines as bright as its silver exterior.

The Concept chassis has a core of natural, medium-density wood fiber. It’s set in aluminum with an upper layer that incorporates a high-tech, synthetic compound. These materials eliminate unwanted vibrations.

The DC motor is fed by an external, voltage-stabilized power supply and is completely decoupled from the chassis. This isolates the record from mechanical interference. The magnetic bearing on the tonearm is friction-free for extremely low distortion and excellent performance.

What We Like

  • Top-notch materials and build quality
  • Set-up involves attaching the platter and plugging it in
  • Easily switches between 33, 45, and 78 records
  • The MM (Moving Magnet) cartridge produces superb sound quality with perfectly textured bass and treble.

What We Don’t Like

  • The dust cover is sold separately.
  • The tonearm is extremely sensitive, and any nearby movement will make it jump if it’s not placed on a solid, isolated platform like a wall mount.

The Clearaudio Concept Turntable with MM V2 Cartridge is another winner in the world of turntables and features the award-winning design Clearaudio is known for. The sound from the cartridge will make your music jump from the records as if you were live in the studio.

Unfortunately, the friction-free magnetic bearing tonearm is also likely to jump with nearby movement, although a level, isolated platform can fix that. Apart from that, the tonearm and V2 Cartridge are an awe-inspiring system.

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Best Under $5,000

4. Concept Wood Turntable with Satisfy Black Tonearm

The Clearaudio Concept Wood Turntable with a Satisfy Tonearm and Maestro V2 MM is a brand new model that builds on the features of the standard Concept turntable by adding an upgraded Satisfy tonearm, solid wood throughout the base, and the Maestro V2 MM Cartridge.

Solid, baltic birch wood in the plinth (base) creates less resonance for a smoother, richer sound. The Satisfy tonearm is one of the most solid you’ll find on the market.

The Maestro V2 MM Cartridge technology uses ebony as a resonance-resistant body to provide superlative sound quality and record-breaking weight values.

What We Like

  • The look and quality of the birch wood throughout the base produces a richer sound than aluminum models.
  • The Satisfy tonearm is solid and smooth, an upgrade over the magnetic bearing tonearm.
  • The Maestro V2 Cartridge achieves amazing stereo-matching at the highest dynamic range in its price point.

What We Don’t Like

  • The dust cover is sold separately.

This Clearaudio Concept Wood Turntable is a phenomenal machine that takes the Clearaudio concept and kicks it up a notch. The solid wood plinth is beautiful and provides a smoother sound quality.

The Maestro V2 MM is the lightest cartridge weight of any you’ll find, producing a smoother play. This record player is a great choice for audiophiles who want a precision device that doesn’t break the bank.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Clearaudio?

Clearaudio is a German company that has produced high-fidelity audio products for over 40 years. Since the inception of their first moving coil cartridges in 1978, Clearaudio has set (and continues to reset) the bar in audio quality.

Their record players and cartridge coils have amazed music lovers in over 80 countries, from precision and clean design to intelligent innovation. Their continued refinement has led them to collect nearly every award in the industry.

What Awards Has Clearaudio Received?

Clearaudio has been the German Plus X Award recipient, the world’s biggest innovation award for technology, sport, and lifestyle.

They’ve also won the What Hi-Fi? Sound and Vision Award for their Concept brand, the Red Dot Award, and the Design Award of Germany.

Conclusion

Clearaudio turntables offer maximum precision, quality standard, innovative tonearms, and above all, tremendous sound. Using only high-end materials, these feats of German engineering will provide style and grace while bringing out the exceptional sound your records were made for.

The Clearaudio Concept is an award-winning design that makes playing records a dream with its simple design, ease of use, and quick set-up. Which Concept you choose will depend on your budget, personal style, and desired amenities.

The Clearaudio Concept Turntable with a Satisfy Carbon Fiber Tonearm and Concept MC is one of the best you’ll find on the market, combining high-quality with a price that won’t break the bank. The Satisfy tonearm is solid and smooth and can accommodate your favorite 33s and 45s.

The Clearaudio Concept Turntable with a .3mv MC cartridge pre-installed brings together the same high-quality expected from Clearaudio at a price so low. You’ll wonder how they can afford to offer it. The MC cartridge is smooth, producing one of the lower outputs you’ll find.

The Clearaudio Concept Wood Turntable with a Satisfy Tonearm and Maestro V2 MM has a beautiful, sleek design with shining wood plinth details. It produces a rich, smooth sound and would be a great addition to any audiophile’s collection if they can afford it.

Whichever Clearaudio turntable you choose, you can be assured of the best quality precision engineers can create, an innovative design that reduces motor and chassis interference, and a solid machine that will never do your classic records wrong.

The price point is on the low end of the spectrum for this quality of player, which makes the Clearaudio turntable one of the most popular in the entire world.

Your preferences may vary, but your satisfaction will never waiver with a Clearaudio turntable.

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