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DJ Equipment Reviews Numark PT-01

Verdict : 
The perfect portable solution for record-shopping and crate-digging.

Numark PT-01There have been very few new and affordable options in the realms of portable turntables recently, but that’s all about to change as Numark enter the market with a product that goes beyond a simple record shopping assistant.

Of course, checking out tracks in the dusty confines of your favourite vinyl emporium or the wind and the rain of a car boot sale is very much the primary function of this player, and it does such admirably, but with its additional features the belt-drive PT-01 can also be used as a basic DJ turntable.

Let’s concentrate on its portable properties to start with though. The first thing that strikes you is that the shape of the PT-01 is very convenient for carriage, with it being roughly the size of a 12-inch record. Therefore it can be easily transported in a record bag or similar holdall, though if you do want to show it off then you can, as it sports an integrated carry handle.

The PT-01 is cased in hard plastic (with removable lid) and certainly seems able to take the odd knock or two, but it’s not going to survive the kind of thrashing received by professional club turntables, so should be handled with care. Consequently it is also very light, so there are no worries getting weighed down by it.

Of course, being portable it needs battery power and the PT-01 runs off six ‘D’ cells. These are large and, it has to be said, expensive, so you’d be advised to invest in re-chargeable rather than disposal batteries. For home use, meanwhile, or indeed in friendly record shops, there is an AC adaptor included so you can plug it into mains electric.

In terms of output, the unit sports a built-in speaker which sure pumps out a decent amount of sound for its size, plus twin headphone outputs on 3.5mm and 6mm connections let you sample your sounds in private. Furthermore there is a stereo line output so you can connect the PT-01 to a mixer or amplifier, bypassing the unit’s in-built speaker.

Operation of the PT-01 is simple. There are no start/stop buttons. Instead, like a traditional hi-fi deck, the platter starts rotating as you lift the tonearm to the record. However, unlike the traditional hi-fi turntable, the tonearm doesn’t return to its arm rest at the end of the record so you will need to pick it up and pop it back.

The tonearm itself sports a removable head shell and cartridge, although the latter is not of the highest quality, and in regular use frequent stylus change would be recommended. However, that is to be expected, for the whole deck costs less than some professional DJ cartridges.

As mentioned, there are a handful of controls that take the PT-01 to the next level and these include pitch and tone rotaries. The former means that you can use the PT-01 for beat-mixing. Accurate vinyl manipulation is very difficult, though, and while the manufacturer’s claim to that effect isn’t unfounded, I wouldn’t recommend buying it solely with that purpose in mind.

Indeed, these two features are equally useful when record hunting – for example you can check out what a particular break sounds like pitched up and down, while the impact of the tone control can prove invaluable in compensating for background noise.

Overall, then, the PT-01 is a great product: it’s the most affordable of its type, and ideal for any DJ. So if kit such as this has long been on your wish-list, there couldn’t be a better time to treat yourself.

Portable turntable
Battery or AC power
Built-in speaker
33, 45 or 78 RPM
+/-10% pitch control
RCA line out
3.5mm and 6mm headphone outputs

Manufacturer: Numark
Model: PT-01
Price: £89.99 RRP inc VAT
Contact: Numark
Tel: 01252 341 400


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