And that definitely extends to record players.
The problem with vintage models is that they lack modern features and components.
That is why models like the Portable Wireless LP Belt-Drive Record Player With Built-In Stereo Speakers from Wockoder are such a hit. They look vintage on the outside, but are anything but on the inside.
- Belt-driven motor
- Wireless connectivity (Bluetooth)
- Plays all three-speeds
- Low price
- Compact, lightweight design
- RCA outputs allow connection to active speakers or receiver
- The plastic panel that the tonearm attaches to is somewhat flimsy
- Sound quality is good for the speaker size, but less so than our top picks
- Cheap cartridge, though good for price (you can upgrade it later)
They give you all the features that are standard in modern record players and wrap them up in a gorgeous retro package.
And when it comes to this particular turntable, you get it all at a great price, too.
So what’s the drawback?
Well, there are a few. When you pay this little, there are obviously some sacrifices. Let’s take a closer look and see what they are.
Wockoder Record Player Review: Overview And Features
There’s something about vintage turntables that casual listeners and audiophiles both find appealing. If you don’t have to have the real deal and you’re happy to have a vintage-inspired model with some modern features, then this is the turntable for you.
While it’s true that higher-priced reproductions will come with more top of the line features, the manufacturer has done a great job of including important features that you’ll find yourself using on a daily basis, and all without hiking up the price.
Wockoder’s latest model isn’t all about flash and big sound. Instead, its pure vintage style takes you back to a classic design and a great setup that will make a nice addition to an existing audio system. Or it’ll work great as a standalone.
But don’t let the vintage design fool you. Inside, this model is packing some great modern features including wireless capability.
Despite its lightweight, compact design, this is a turntable that’s built tough. It comes with an included clear cover which you can use at all times to keep both the platter and your vinyl free from dust.
Dust can negatively impact sound clarity, so you always want to clean your player regularly, but a dust cover means you have to do it less often.
The tonearm and stylus are both stock. They perform well, but the serious audiophile may want to upgrade them later down the line. If you’d like to learn more about upgrades and the basic mechanics of a record player, read “How do record players work?”
Like many other models in this price range, it supports three speeds and three record sizes. Speeds include the standard 33 1/3, 45, and 78 RPM. In terms of record size, you can play your twelve, ten, and seven-inch records.
Improved Shock Absorption
The base of the turntable is equipped with a spring that’s designed to improve sound quality by providing shock absorption. Shock absorption can help prevent the tonearm from skipping, but most models don’t come with a base designed to remedy this issue. Instead, you usually have to purchase shock absorbers separately.
Vibrations that occur when you play a record can easily be transmitted via the surface of the deck, creating a type of audible rumble. In some cases, this will cause the stylus and tonearm to jump out of the grooves.
Some audiophiles recommend placing the turntable on a heavier piece of furniture, such as a dresser or a quality record player stand, in order to reduce the vibrations, but changing the turntable’s location isn’t always enough.
Fortunately, Wockoder is one step ahead.
The addition of the spring located at the base of the platter can help to minimize vibrations and prevent skipping, in most cases. If you do still have an issue, make sure the turntable is level. If it’s not level, tracking will not be the only issue you run into.
Many people focus on leveling the base only, but I recommend checking the platter as well. If the platter isn’t level you may need to take the rubber platter cover off and use some shims to level it.
The manufacturer also has a recommended range for their stylus, which you can adjust to set the tracking force. If it’s set incorrectly, this can also lead to tracking issues.
If you’re not sure how to go about this last step, you can use a gauge specifically designed to measure tracking force. You’ll use this to measure the tonearm’s downward force.
Then you adjust the tonearm’s counterbalance so that the tracking force is set to one half. Slowly increase the tracking force until the tonearm stops jumping.
The built-in speakers are moderately loud, but not loud enough to rival a full audio setup. If you’re using this model as a standalone player then you may need to hook up some external active speakers via the RCA outs
A great set of floor standing speakers is best for vinyl. You can also connect those to a stereo receiver. However, the internal speakers are more than loud enough for bedroom use.
Since this model is Bluetooth ready you can hook up external devices including MP3 players, smartphones, or tablets.
This one features adds so much versatility. Not only can you listen to more music than what you have in your vinyl collection, but you can digitally stream the latest tracks from your smartphone, iPad, or any other type of smart device.
If you want bigger sound than what the built-in speakers offer, you unfortunately can not use Bluetooth speakers. The Bluetooth only goes in, not out. Your only option is to use active speakers through the RCA outputs.
That said, no turntable in this price range offers Bluetooth output. I’m not sure why that is, because it would be a very useful feature.
Combined with the base designed to reduce vibration, the belt-driven motor will also do its part to minimize skipping. An elastic belt is attached directly to the motor and the platter. This results in precise, fast, smooth movements.
The platter rests on top of a bearing and is isolated from the motor, working to reduce vibration. The belt drive benefits from this setup since the bearing allows for both rotational and linear movement.
Belt-driven motors are very precise and the preferred type of turntable for many audiophiles for that treason. They are more reliable and lower maintenance compared to direct drive motors, which are usually found in higher priced models.
Since the design also helps to reduce vibration, the result is a much cleaner sound. For many audiophiles, motor noise reduction is a priority. The sound is much clearer the more a turntable’s feedback noise is reduced and the manufacturer has managed to accomplish just that.
For the price, the turntable’s sound quality is impressive. The ability to hook it up to an external pair of speakers is also a plus.
In terms of aesthetics, it features the perfect mod, vintage look, that’s simple but classy. The top of the turntable is clear so you can see your vinyl spinning, even when the lid is shut. The lid itself is designed to cut down on dust and debris coming into contact with the platter and your vinyl.
This model is also very beginner-friendly, taking just five minutes to set up. The controls are pretty basic, so you’ll have no problem playing records, even if this is your first turntable and you have no idea how to use one.
The player’s three speed options and soft drop arm allow you to play vinyl of all sizes. The size of the speakers may be small but they’re somehow still able to offer a crystal clear sound that will make your vinyl sound richer.
However, there is one issue that can be frustrating. When you turn the turntable on, you’ll have to deal with the Bluetooth pairing message each time. Unfortunately, you cannot disable this feature.
Comparison To The Competition
This is a standalone model. While it’s portable due to its light weight, it’s not quite as portable as the suitcase turntables that have risen in popularity in recent years.
Models such as the Victrola Vintage 3-Speed Bluetooth Suitcase Turntable allow you to pack it up and take your vinyl collection with you, wherever you go. Like the Wockoder, the Victrola also features Bluetooth connectivity, so you can wirelessly play your music from any type of Bluetooth enabled device.
Quality-wise, both setups are pretty square in regard to sound and extra features such as a 3.5 millimeter aux-in line and an RCA output. But unlike this turntable, the model by Victrola doesn’t come with built-in shock absorption, which is a feature that would be especially helpful in a portable model.
This Wockoder model provides a better, more stable sound, but if you’re looking for a way to play your vinyl when you’re away from home, then the Victrola suitcase turntable is the way to go.
Wockoder Turntable With Speakers Review: Conclusion And Rating
The Wockoder Record Player With Built-In Stereo Speakers is compact, portable, and includes a couple of built-in speakers that offer a clear, smooth sound that any audiophile or casual listener can appreciate.
The shock absorption spring is a nice touch and helps minimize vibration and skipping. The wireless connectivity adds versatility to the setup, but it can be frustrating to deal with the pairing prompt each time the turntable is switched on. It’s definitely a bug the manufacturer needs to look into.
Aside from that issue, I felt that this vintage-inspired model is one of the best record players that come with built-in speakers on the market. I gave this model a Top Record Players rating of 4.5 out of 5.
Jasmine Porter says
The record player is really great!!! It’s very vintage and I love that it’s portable. 5 out 5 stars on this product!!!
David Richard says
Glad you like it. Thanks for commenting!
My brand new Wockoder just like yours above is not working in that the speaker does not put out enough sound to hear the music. The earphones do not pick up the sound. The machine displays the blue blinking light while record is playing — I think the blue light is supposed to turn green. Bought this through Amazon a couple of years ago and have had no success at all with it. Thank goodness it only cost $6 total. I will have to find speakers to hook to the back if I want to hear anything at all. VERY UNHAPPY WITH THIS PURCHASE!
Armando Juarez says
My girlfriend bought me this record player for Christmas, and it is truly amazing. Finally have a record player that I can definitely rely on and listen to my vinyl! Truly a 5 out of 5 star product!
David Richard says
I’m glad to hear you’re happy with it!
WILLIAM J CUMMINGS says
My Wodecker skips/skates terribly and unlike my past quality turntables, there is no counterbalance at the end of the tone arm to exert downward pressure on the stylus to keep it in the record grove. FYI, the turntable is perfectly balanced so that is not the problem. My next step is to glue a coin overt the stylus to keep it in the groove. I’d appreciate any alternatives to this proposed measure for a brand new, although admittedly cheap, turntable.
Deanna Pappas says
I have the same problem with mine. I would love to see a response to this question.
I bought this record player for my daughter for Christmas. It is unstable and wobbles the record on the turntable which makes the needle slide across and skip the records. This is not good on the records and causes for inconsistent listening pleasure.
I would not recommend this item. Which is a bummer because it had potential. It’s an excellent size, has a built in speaker, and an adapter to place on the turntable for 45’s, but it just doesn’t deliver on the one thing it’s meant to do.
Shuree Tripp says
Hi! We bought this for daughter for Christmas. She has been extremely happy with it! It sounds great and is just beautiful! Such an amazing product!!
Brian LaPoint says
I need a replacement power cord for my WOCKODER KD-3010BU. Can anyone tell me the specks or where to buy? I do not have the old one so am at a loss.
My system’s adapter says 5 volts, 1.5 amps
Appreciate the recommendation. Will try it out.
Mitchell Robinson says
Can this turntable be connected to a stereo receiver?
David Richard says
Yes it can, using the RCA outputs.
Records skip while playing
Bought as gift for Christmas,turntable wobbles. Can it be fixed?
What speakers do you need ? Do I need an amp ? I have the older version wockoder
Sara Calkins says
I am seriously disappointed in this turntable. It’s engineered to stop playing at a set point. Some of our 78’s have different lengths of play time and the darn pre-set will grind to a halt before finishing the record.
I’d love to learn of a work-around for this issue!
My fondest memory of our old RCA stereo console record player was it’s ability to stack a number of records above the turntable and have them automatically drop & play, then return the stylus to it’s cradle when playing was done. I didn’t realize this unit had absolutely none of those features.
I’m not chastising you over price, but more so over what you don’t say about the unit. When marketed as “vintage style”, it certainly lacks even vintage technology.
Greg Zabo says
Nice review. Can you please let me know if playing 78RPM records on the Wockoder requires a different or separate stylus than for 33-1/3 or 45RPM? I don’t really want to switch a stylus or cartridge each time I switch from LP’s to 78’s. Thanks,
My turntable keeps wobbling and causing the songs to skip etc. My boyfriend got this for my birthday and hasn’t worked proper since receiving. What can be done??
oliver H FRAGOSO says
Just received unit for Xmas turntable wobbles and record speed at 33 is inconsistent. Will look for a better model.
Carl Peoples says
My unit was a Christmas gift and worked great until just recently. It started to skip and the turntable has always wobbled, but I don’t think that is the problem. I would like to change the stylus, but I can’t get the arm high enough to see how to get this one off. I’m afraid to raise it too high or I might break it. Any suggestions?
Does anyone know how to use the FM Tuner??? Like lock in a station and such?
william strickler says
The bluetooth does not work with external bluetooth compatable speakers, very disappointing since the speaker of the player is not very good at all. Looks great and so cool to play vinyl again but very disappointing sound.
I agree about the lousy sound and I am surprised that yours is the only comment to this point. The sound quality is awful. It hurt my ears to hear one of my old favorite records for the first time in years sounding so distorted. Been trying to find a solution for months – can I hook up two external speakers? (I have tow old PSB’s) There’s only one port on the player? What can I do? It was a thoughtful gift from son, but so far I can’t use it.
It keeps trying to connect to Bluetooth even though I am using wired headphones. This means, it won’t play any music until it pairs. Is there some way to stop it from trying to pair to Bluetooth so I can listen to it on wired speakers or headphones?
Vanisha Tyagi says
I cannot find this specified anywhere. Does this player have a built-in Phono preamp? Or do we need to buy it seperately?