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Onkyo CP1050 is by far one of the most interesting turntables under $500 out there right now. Bang for the buck, it delivers a lot of performance at a very reasonable price. Let’s take a closer look.


These days turntables can be divided into two categories. The first one is where you will see all of your modern looking ones, while the other is where we find models made to look vintage. Onkyo CP1050 is somewhere in the middle.

It has a lot of that vintage appeal but the heavy use of aluminum gives it a modern appearance. Onkyo has made the base out of high-quality MDF that is covered with black wood grain vinyl. Not only does it look good, but that MDF does wonders to reduce vibrations. Speaking of vibrations, Onkyo has also fitted a set of quality anti-vibration feet on this model.

CP1050 comes with a tinted dustcover as stock, which you can remove if you want to. Overall, this has got to be one of the best looking turntables in this particular price range. No matter what kind of interior design you have, chances are it will fit right in.


In terms of features, there are several that are worth mentioning. The very core of CP1050’s quality is in its direct drive system. Onkyo has put together a very solid motor that sits below a light weight but very accurately machined aluminum platter. When combined, these two provide for extremely precise tracking at least for this price range.

On top of that, CP1050 comes with a modular aluminum tonearm. They have chosen Audio Technica’s 600 series cartridge that is pretty decent for a stock option. However, seeing how easy it is to pop out the stock cartridge and insert a new one, you can experiment with different options. Onkyo CP1050 is capable of playing 33 1/3 as well as 45 RPM records.

If you get an adapter, you can also play 7-inch records too, which is not something you see every day. When it comes to connectors, you get gold plated RCA phono terminals as well as left and right channel signals.


Cool features and attractive design are great, but the real question is what kind of performance are we looking at here. Fortunately for us, Onkyo CP1050 is absolutely amazing in this regard. Overall, the general soundstage is very vibrant and saturated.

Once you looking at each portion of the frequency range, you will find that trebles and mids are generally much better than lows. Even so, the lower frequencies are well defined and take nothing away from the listening experience. Tracking is very solid, with a smooth performance as long as the stylus is on the record.

When paired up with a decent amp, Onkyo CP1050 can really put most of its competition to shame. It might not be the very best out there, but it sure beats the majority of turntables in its respective price range.

The Rumble:

Onkyo CP1050 comes across as a well-built and well-designed turntable that offers extremely solid performance for the money. With a good choice of cartridge and phono amp, you are looking at pure quality.