Should I play my records on radiograms and stereograms?

NOOOO! Not if you care about sound quality and the life of your vinyl.

Radiograms and stereograms, with a handful of exceptions, are not real hi-fi equipment. They are furniture pieces that play music, this was their original design intent and in this role, they work well, but don’t expect more of them.

The problems are varied, but generally speaking the turntables in these units range from bad to terrible. They usually use ceramic cartridges that run very high tracking forces and fat, conical stylii that don’t treat records well.

The electronics and speakers are not designed to do much more than fill the room with an ‘easy listening’ sound, typical of AM radio stations of the day. If this is your jam, cool, but you really shouldn’t play precious vinyl on a radiogram or stereogram.

Doing so is a recipe for poor sound quality and high record wear, so if you have precious vinyl, get yourself a decent hi-fi turntable with an elliptical stylus, or better. The reduced tracking force and lower groove wall pressure will extend the life of your records and produce much better sound quality when combined with a decent amplifier and speakers.

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