On Christmas, I opened the big gift from my mom: a new Jensen multi-speed turntable. Nothing fancy, just a cheap turntable to get me started with my collection. With it came my first vinyl, X by Ed Sheeran.
Make fun of me for liking Ed Sheeran if you must, but that is not the issue here. The thought of starting a vinyl collection was a bit strange as I thought I would never take interest in starting one ever in my life. Regardless, vinyl has been making a huge comeback over the last two years and I am not the first millennial to take an interest in turntables and join the hipster movement.
Everyone chooses to start a collection for their own reasons. Some like the vintage feel of a record, while others are true audiophiles that cannot stand the sound of anything that’s not vinyl. Personally, I started one because I have my select group of albums that I love to just sit around and listen to occasionally, and ownership of the vinyl for that album, for me, symbolizes my respect for the music.
It would have been a hilarious sight for any baby-boomer who was watching me try to get my first record playing. I had to follow the manual step-by-step and search online for help. I realized 10 minutes in that I was getting my fingerprints on all the important parts of the record and that I should be cleaning off the record before using it; things I probably should have researched prior to starting. Days later, I also realized that I shouldn’t keep my records lying flat if I didn’t want them to warp over time; another rookie mistake.
And yet, the struggle was worth it. It was great to hear the sound coming out of the cheap speakers built into my turntable. Yes, it’s a beginner turntable, but the sound was clearly better and relaxing to listen to.
So, if you are thinking about starting a vinyl collection, I highly suggest doing some research, which is something that I wished I had done in the first place. Look up how to care for your records, which turntable to buy, and how to use whatever turntable you purchase.
However, don’t let your reason for starting a collection stop you. There are vinyl experts out there who have crazy-developed tastes in music who would scoff at your turntable and album choices. I’m sure I would be a laughing stock of the vinyl-expert community (if there is such a thing). Buy a turntable and choose your music according to what you want. In the end, you are doing this for yourself.
It has been about a week since I got my turntable and started my collection, and I am truly happy with my decision. I am looking forward to garnering a healthy collection of vinyls in the future so I can enjoy my favorite albums in peace. I suggest anyone remotely interested should do the same.