Were you looking for a Jensen turntable review to get the inside scoop on one of the most popular and affordable turntables on the market today? Has this dear record player caught your eye and left you wanting to know more?
Then you are in the right place. In today’s Jensen JTA-230 turntable review, we will be exploring and discussing all things Jensen turntable in this Jensen turntable review!
Let’s jump straight into the most important aspect of this Jensen turntable review and discuss all of its features.
Speeds & Speakers
This is a belt-driven turntable that can spin at three different speeds. Yes, it has placed itself firmly on the side of the latter in the great debate between direct drive vs belt drive turntables. And in doing so, can cater to all three of the main vinyl record types and speeds.
It even comes equipped with a fully dedicated speaker system built in. This means that there is theoretically no need to look elsewhere for a stereo system to place alongside it.
These built-in speakers are not exactly going to bring down houses, nor are they going to please even the lightest audiophiles. However, they do get the job done.
If you want your vinyl records to sound a little better, then you can always hook up the Jensen to a set of external speakers. This way, you can transmit the signal from the turntable elsewhere via the RCA line-out jacks.
For now, suffice it to say that the turntable itself is fully fitted out and capable of spinning records at the correct speeds. The sound quality is not going to be exemplary, but for this price, what exactly did you expect?
USB to Digital
As with many other current turntables and record players, the Jensen offers the option to connect via USB to a computer. This way, you can convert vinyls to CDs.
Converting vinyl records ebbs and flows in terms of its popularity, though there is never a better time than the present to preserve your vinyl collection digitally.
Not quite content to simply spin a record collection at record speed, nor to include the speakers. It also must send forth its signals to the computer. Oh, the world we now find ourselves in!
The Jensen also comes kitted out with its own software that can be applied to a whole host of different purposes and uses.
Digital audio players wish they could offer this kind of compatibility!
Firstly, you can simply use the software like any other audio software. Like in the Audacity platform, for example, you can record straight into the software. This way, you can capture whatever you like via a microphone, or you can even engage in some sampledelia, chucking in whatever sounds you like and making a song or sound collage.
Alternatively, you can just as easily funnel the sounds of the turntable itself into the computer via the software. So you can preserve the sounds of your vinyl records in an arguably safer and more reliable digital format.
The use of this software is, of course, in no way obligatory, and you can just as well use free software like Audacity or Fruity Loops. Jensen is easy and breezy and simply wants you to be happy. Unlike some other digital audio players that can over-complicate things to no end.
This, however, is only the beginning of all the features that Jensen has managed to cram onboard.
No, Jensen does not rely solely on the speakers that come built-in. If they are not to your liking, you can connect the Jensen to just about anything that welcomes RCA outputs and inputs.
This is, however, also a turntable of the 21st-century vinyl revival. So, it offers compatibility with auxiliary inputs and outputs. This means that there is a dedicated stereo headphone jack through which to feed the audio signals elsewhere, either to headphones or speakers.
Therefore, besides allowing you to send the signals of the turntable to other speakers and headphones, the auxiliary inputs mean that the speakers onboard can also accommodate for mp3 players, phones, and other devices that might be hooked up and fed into the Jensen.
The sound is going to be far from satisfactory, of course, but you should know this by now.
The Jensen also offers a variety of extra options for customizing the tone of the sound.
This will be especially useful to those who listen to a wide scope of different styles and sounds of music. For example, those who enjoy a bit of Les Rallizes Denudes as much as the next person. And, of course, those who like to kick back and unwind to some Harold Budd from time to time.
Needless to say, these two artists are worlds apart in terms of their attitude, volume, and tonal qualities. So anyone wanting to listen to such a variety will need a turntable that can cope.
Thankfully, the Jensen is equipped with pitch control and tone control. It also has a dedicated and capable volume control that can cover a rather wide spectrum of sounds and tonal responses.
This is particularly remarkable when compared to a bunch of others in a similar price range. Many turntables do not offer anything besides volume control – no tonal customization or fine-tuning of the pitch.
For a stereo speaker set that is far from exemplary, these kinds of options ought to be mandatory. This will allow the user to at least get a semi-decent sound out of it.
The Jensen has also sealed the deal with a fantastic tone control power indicator that is immensely helpful. This is because it can tell whether the entire thing is on or off. That is something that can be difficult to assess with other similarly priced models.
Also, unlike many other models in this price range, the Jensen is equipped with an auto-stop and auto-cue mechanism. This means you can easily stop and start a record at a moment’s notice. This will be perfect for those who are newer to the art of record collection or for those who are still learning to perfect their patience in listening to longer pieces of music.
To Buy or Not to Buy?
So, onto the moment we have all been waiting for. When looking into different turntables, it is always important to explore the pros and cons. Below you will find both, and this will hopefully help you make up your mind about the Jensen turntable.
- The price and easy setup make this a must for the beginner or casual listener.
- The stylus is easily replaced, either with a model from Jensen or from elsewhere.
- There is the option for outputting the audio via the RCA or 3.5mm auxiliary jack.
- The USB port means this can be easily connected to a computer, and records can be digitized.
- This piece of kit is very simple and easy to use for all levels of record collectors.
- The sound quality is also decent enough for the prize.
- The operation of this turntable is only semi-automatic, meaning that the record will stop automatically but will need to be started manually.
- The speakers that come built-in are not particularly good or very loud.
- The sound quality is pretty appalling but more or less sensical, considering the low price.
- The bass response, thus, is all but nil unless hooked up to some external speakers.
- The tone control is there but is rather limited.
- There are no useful features like a counterweight, and the kit itself cannot entirely be upgraded (besides, of course, the stylus, etc.).
So, there you have it!
Hopefully, this brief Jensen turntable review of the Jensen JTA-230’s benefits and drawbacks has been of some use to you. Turntables are great, but they can be a bit expensive. If this review has convinced you to get a turntable, but you think you can’t afford it, there are different turntables out there at an affordable price. Over and out!
FAQs Jensen Turntable Review
Are Jensen record players any good?
Whether Jensen record players are any good remains to be seen. This is by no means a brand of record players to cater to the needs and wants of an audiophile. The sound of the built-in speakers is sub-par and utterly lacking in low-end. For those who are looking for a more casual experience, though, it will do you just fine.
What is a 3-speed record player?
A 3-speed record player is simply a record player that plays at three speeds. There are three main speeds at which records are spun: 33 1/3 rpm, 45 rpm, and 78 rpm. Though, many turntables today do not cater to the latter.
What is the difference between a turntable and a record player?
A turntable is the part of a record player that does the spinning and features the stylus. The stylus meets the record and reads the data imbibed on its surface. A record player is an entire unit. It consists of the turntable, the speakers, the amplifier, the preamp, and a whole host of other bits and pieces.
Are most vinyl 33 or 45?
Yes, most vinyls are 33 or 45. There are, however, three main speeds at which records are spun – 33 1/3 rpm, 45 rpm, and 78 rpm. Though many turntables today do not cater to the latter. This speed was first implemented back in the early days of gramophone technology, believed by its inventor Emile Berliner to be the optimum speed for sound quality. 78 rpm records were slowly filtered out of circulation as better materials were used for manufacture, enabling slower speeds that could fit more music onto one disc.
What should I look for in a new turntable?
There are several things to look for in a new turntable. For example, it must be able to offer a consistent speed, preferably with options for at least 33 rpm and 45 rpm playback. You will also want to check whether the action is manual, semi-automatic, or fully automatic, and then purchase according to your own wants.