How to play vinyl records with ease?

I have come across a lot of people who don’t know how to play vinyl records or how they actually work. I have always tried to help them and never judge them because I know everyone starts somewhere.

If you are someone who hasn’t played a vinyl in their life and has the same question, I am here to help you out.

Playing a record is fairly simple; all you need is a record player or a turntable to play it. But also, before you start playing the record, it’s very important to handle records with the utmost care.

Hence, first, we will discuss how to handle your records efficiently, then we will move on to the steps to play them, and lastly, we will talk about the steps to follow once you are done playing them. So, let’s get started!

Be gentle while holding record

The grooves are used to record sound in the vinyl record. If you touch a record directly with your hands, it can leave dirt and oil on its surface that can impact the sound quality produced.

How to play vinyl records with ease

Hence, here are the steps to correctly hold records before playing them:

  1. While setting the record on the table, gently pull the inner sleeve out of the outer jacket using your index finger and thumb. Be extra careful while doing it, as you don’t want to touch the record surface.
  2. Now, gently tilt the inner sleeve and slide the vinyl into the palm of your other hand.
  3. After that, use your thumb pad to support the outer edge and your finger to support the centre label of the record.
  4. Lift the dust cover of the record player while it is “off”.
  5. Now, hold the outer edge of the vinyl record with both hands and place it on the felt mat of the turntable.

Steps to Play the vinyl record

play your favourite vinyl record in no time

Here are the steps to play your favourite vinyl record in no time. Cheers!

  1. First, plug the record player or turntable into the power socket and switch it on.
  2. Now press the start/stop button to activate the turntable.
  3. As soon as the record player platter starts spinning, gently lift the tonearm using the cue lever.
  4. Now, hold the head of the tonearm and gently move it towards the edge of the record, hovering on the smoother outer edge of the playing field.
  5. After that, gently lower the tonearm using the cue lever so that the stylus or needle can make direct contact with the vinyl grooves.
  6. Once the stylus comes in contact with the grooves, you will start hearing music out of your record player.

Things to do after playing your record

Things to do after playing your record

When you are done playing your record, here are some steps to prepare both the turntable and vinyl record for the next playing session:

  1. Lift the tonearm gently using the cue lever to stop the record from playing.
  2. After that, press the start/stop button on the record player or turntable.
  3. Now, bring the tonearm down to the resting position using the cue lever and secure it using the latch.
  4. Turn off the power supply on the turntable by pressing the “off” button.
  5. Now gently lift the vinyl record from the outer edges using both hands.
  6. Slide the record into one hand and use your fingers to support the centre label.
  7. Then put the record back into the inner sleeve with the open side facing upward.
  8. Gently slide it back into the outer sleeve or jacket and you are done.

Keeping vinyl this way will secure it from dust particles while storing it for the next playing session.

Final Beat

It’s easy to play the vinyl records once you are aware of the right steps. All you need to do is switch on the record player, place the vinyl on the felt mat and lower the tonearm on its surface and its done. It’s that easy!

If you still have any doubts related to playing your records, do let me know in the comments and I will be more than happy to help you.

Must, must read:

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do you need a record player to play a vinyl?

Yes, you need a record player or a turntable connected with external speakers to play a vinyl record. 

Q: Are vinyls breakable?

Vinyls are made up of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) that can be broken when dropped or if not properly handled. So yes, vinyls are breakable.

Q: Is it ok to touch vinyls?

You should avoid touching the vinyl surface as it can leave oil from your hands on its surface. Always try to hold your records from the outermost edges.

Russel Hawkins - About the author

About the author

Russ Hawkins is a passionate audiophile who loves to collect vinyl records. In his leisure time, you will find him either listening to his favorite music albums or playing with his dog Max. He loves writing about vinyl, turntables, record players, and everything music!

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