Dual turntables have a reputation for being reliable, sturdy performers that last for decades. Whilst not exactly high end in their time, and not as good as Rega or Thorens turntables, their middle of the road performance will suit most buyers. Dual turntables are often built using an idler drive system. In the world of idler drives, Dual turntables are generally not up there with the Garrards or Thorens, but their mid to upper range products are certainly worthwhile. There are also a few belt drive and direct drive models in their line-up worthy of purchasing at the right price.
History of Dual Turntables
Dual Turntables were founded in 1927. Reportedly, the Dual turntables name was garnered from its Dual power supply which allowed both electricity and wind up power. Surely a novel idea at the time, and worthy of branding, but Dual Turntables have survived well beyond the technology of their namesake. Dual produced their first turntable in the late 1930s, following the development of their phono cartridge. The Second World War halted production of leisure goods in Germany, but following the war’s conclusion in 1945 production progressed well. Dual turntables began being sold outside of Germany following the creation of their 1009 model in the early 60s. In the 70s, Dual began producing direct drive and belt drive turntables. In the late 70s and 80s, Dual began exploring the new markets of cassettes and CD players. The 80s appear to have been a difficult time for Dual, but they came out the other side unscathed to continue producing high quality audio equipment.
Who Should Buy Dual Turntables?
The sound quality of the best dual turntables is about on par with the best entry level audiophile turntables of the current age. If you can get a Dual turntable for a price that will save you a couple of hundred dollars on one of these turntables, then go for it. You’d be hoping to pay around $200-300 for a good used Dual, such as the 1229. Since Dual turntables are built to last, they are better suited to people who want to dabble in record players than the ultra cheap turntables from Numark and Audio Technica. As always, the potential buyer should consider whether the inconvenience of having to find an old Dual turntable is worth it, compared to paying a little extra for a Pro-ject Debut III. Duals turntables, particularly in the United States and Europe, have plenty of support available, as they have retained much of their popularity through to the 21st century. A good reference website for Dual turntables is dual-reference.com
Which Dual Turntables Should You Look Out For?
As Dual was the main supplier of turntables to Germany for decades, there were a few lemons in their product line, so not all Dual turntables are good.
The following models are of good quality and worth buying: