Reviewed: Pioneer PLX-1000
With the release of the Pioneer XDJ 1000 and the brand new all in one XDJ-RX controller some might think that Pioneer had their sights set firmly on the digital world, however with the launch of the new PLX-1000 we see the company dipping their feet into the analog market, releasing a more traditional turntable.
It might not come as much of a surprise considering vinyl sales have hit their highest figure in the UK since 1996,with the growing appreciation of a physical format of music over digital formats and the rise of iTunes and Spotify.
On first glance the PLX-1000 looks very similar to that of the legendary Technics 1200, this being no bad thing. With a similar user layout, DJs used to the familiarity of the Technics 1200 won’t lose their way. The build quality is solid and it comes in at a weighty 13.1 kg, the upper part of the body being made from heavy mass die cast zinc, the lower part thick resin and the base features a 9 mm thick vibration damping material. Lifting up the unit you can tell that it is professionally made, durable and able to withstand testing environments.
The round Start/Stop button resembles that found on CDJ’s and gives it that trademark Pioneer touch and features attractive all blue LED’s that sit alongside the gloss black finish of the player perfectly. The identity of the 1210 is replicated with the platter submerged into the body, S-shape tone arm design and pop up light.
Measuring 17.8 x 6.3 x 13.9 inches the PLX-1000 has dedicated stereo, gold plated, RCA phono output jacks and an IEC AC power connector on its rear panel which are hidden away nicely into the body, to prevent anything being pulled out in error and keeps everything tidy with attachable / detachable power and audio cables.
The tonearm is rubber insulated to provide excellent isolation alongside the robust base and prevents howling. Vinyl purists will enjoy the manual design of the turntable with tone arm functionality making it so that you have to lift the arm off its rest, place it over your wax and manually lower down.
Signal path is totally analog and has no line level pre-amp built in like other products on the market, this resulting in the audio signal being transmitted directly from the tone arm through to the RCA jacks and reproducing crystal quality audio for analog records.
With an impressive starting torque of 4.5 kg the starting time is extremely quick and reaches its fixed rotation speed within 0.3 seconds, this making the PLX-1000 sure to be a firm favourite with club and venue owners to replace their old, dusty worn out Technics in the booth.
Pioneer has created the tempo control with variable width selectable from three levels, with +8%, +16% and +50%, bolstering the capabilities of vinyl DJ play. The pitch control feels super smooth and sleek for seamless vinyl mixing. There is no click at zero, preventing any loss in accuracy of pitch and this is again another feature which makes the Pioneer PLX-1000 a real alternative as the go to club turntable of choice. A handy pitch reset button is also here that instantly reverts to the fixed rotation speed of +0%
Overall here the PLX is nothing revolutionary from Pioneer, what is it however, is a professionally, quality made, club standard vinyl player that can be seen as a genuine alternative to Technics 1210’s. With simple, user-friendly features and excellent performance expect to see this one more regularly in some of the famous booths across the world. At a retail price of £599, it is also not outside the grasp of the bedroom vinyl enthusiast and I would recommend for anyone who is looking to buy a brand new turntable and get the most from the sound quality of analog vinyl.