why is my record player skipping

It’s one of the worst feelings for a music fan – you’ve just put a brand new record on your turntable and the music comes out distorted. We understand that feeling. Indeed, we have been there before. To help you with this inconvenience, we’ve put together a guide on what to do when a new record is dropped. For more severe skips, there are generally two culprits: record itself or yours listening setting. It’s more likely to be due to the setting, but we’ll explore the common causes in both categories. If that’s the case, it’s most likely vinyl. Another trick is to play the record on a different turntable (perhaps at a friend’s place or a record store). If vinyl sounds good on one turntable, but not so good on yours, then you know how to adjust your setup.

Check Turntable Setup

Turning tables

The two turntable components that are most likely to cause a recording to be skipped are:

  • Alarm tone: If possible, rebalance the tone for proper weight and longitudinal tracking force. Adjustment procedures vary by turntable type, so you will need to see specific instructions (which you can find online). Note that tone rebalancing and vertical tracking force adjustment are not an option for some turntables.
  • Touch pen: Check the stylus – or stylus – for wear or foreign objects such as dust. Be careful not to touch the pen when testing it. Clean or replace the toner cartridge if necessary. Visit our guide to turntable stylus cleaning and maintenance for more detailed instructions.

Lower-end turntables are often easier to overlook. In addition to having non-tunable tones, they may not be able to play the louder modern vinyl presses correctly. If skipping becomes frequent, you might consider upgrading your turntable. However, you don’t have to spend a lot to find a better option. Here are some of our favorite beginner and affordable turntables.

Environment

Read more: why is pop music so bad | Top Q&A Your turntable may be receiving bad vibrations, man. Uneven services can exacerbate minor problems. Perhaps your listening setup is adjacent to the laundry room? Of course, they look nice, but those wooden floors can vibrate with heavy footsteps. Try placing a rug or rug underneath your setup, move it away from walls or floors that might shake, and at the very least, make sure your turntable surface is flat. DJs in a noisy club environment will use record weights to limit the oscillations of the sound waves. Your solution could be as simple as placing your turntable on a thick wooden cutting board. Here’s a more complete guide to the importance of isolating turntables and how to fix any vibration problems.

Check records

As we mentioned above, a brand new vinyl record is less often the culprit for skipping playback, although it’s not unheard of. Let’s run through some checks to see if the vinyl might be defective.

Warp

Manufacturing flaws, although extremely rare, can cause vinyl records to warp. Warping temperature record. Pressure warps the logs. Both of these factors can be present while the record is being stored, whether it is roasted in hot storage or crushed under the weight of hundreds of other records. Oh, and of course, carriers aren’t always known to be careful with vinyl.vinyl warpRead more: Why do dragons’ beards float. Slightly warped copy of the author of Beach House’s Bloom. Even the subtle warping in the example above causes significant audio disruption. Trust us, if you’ve just bought a brand new record, your time and energy would be better exchanged for an unedited copy of the album. If you bought the record from your local record store, bring the vinyl back and ask for a refund or exchange. If you bought it on Discogs or from another online retailer, contact the seller as soon as possible to mediate.

Dust and debris

Is it dusty or does it have visible prints on it? Although uncommon, this may have happened during production. To remove dust particles, clean the record with an antistatic brush. Consider deeper cleaning of vinyl records if there are visible stains. Keep in mind that a few minor pops, especially after removing the outer plastic wrap and inner plastic wrap, can be caused by static electricity. The antistatic brush is a useful and affordable tool for any record collector and can help you with these pop-up signs. Remember the two main culprits – setup and recording – and more often than not, it’s a turntable problem or an environmental issue when you hear a brand new recording. When in doubt, play the record on a friend’s turntable or at a record store to rule out the vinyl itself. The first article was published by Steven Williams in January 2020. Last updated in March 2021. Top Q&A

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