Pitched at vinyl newbies and those with limited space to enjoy their collection alike, the Victrola Eastwood 3-Speed Bluetooth Turntable is a wonderful, though basic, way to get into the newly on-trend format. With a nice minimalist design and in-built speakers, it marries modern convenience with classic style.
Easy to use with basic controls
Attractive bamboo-style design
Might not impress experienced vinyl fans
Bluetooth connectivity was patchy (for us)
Vinyl is in a peculiar place right now, with younger generations reclaiming it as their preferred audio format as older music lovers are faced with the fact that their history is now very much new and trendy again, and many legacy music companies are quite rightly capitalising on the fashion by bringing out record players that reflect this shifting perception.
The Victrola Eastwood 3-Speed Bluetooth Turntable makes a strong case for a budget (it costs about what two Taylor Swift LPs would set you back right now) option designed for apartments and smaller homes with music listening as just one of the functions of a room.
And so, the Eastwood doesn't require additional speakers and can even function as a Bluetooth speaker on its own. The bamboo-effect finish is attractive enough to keep the player on display, but it's also lightweight enough to only have out on special occasions.
We tested the Victrola turntable to determine whether it could meet expectations with a sub-$100 price tag. Read on to see our thoughts, or take a look at our best record players guide for more top picks.
Victrola Eastwood Turntable: Key specs
- Type: All-in-One
- Speeds: 33 1/3 RPM, 45 RPM, 78 RPM
- Cartridge?: Magnetic AT-3600LA, included
- Speakers?: Included
- Connections: Bluetooth, RCA, headphones
- Dimensions: H5.2in x W12.7 x D12.3
- Weight: 4.5lbs
Victrola Eastwood Turntable: Design
The Victrola Eastwood Turntable has quite obviously been designed with simplicity in mind, with a matte black top, front speaker grille with the Victrola logo, and bamboo-effect plastic on each side. It's surprisingly compact and would look great on a side table or cabinet. The controls are made up of silver buttons and knobs, and the whole thing looks both contemporary and classic.
Keeping with the general suitability for younger music lovers, the Eastwood works independently without needing additional speakers. An external sound system would absolutely help to enhance the experience, but for those short on space, the in-built speakers are good enough.
Victrola Eastwood Turntable: Set-up
We had no trouble at all getting the Victrola Eastwood up and running. While many record players require a good half-hour pouring over the instruction manual to figure out where various components might fit, the Eastwood works pretty much straight out of the box. The needle has a protective cover that needs to be removed, and then all that's left is to plug it in.
The buttons and knobs are all clearly labelled, so you can easily switch between Bluetooth and Phono modes. Phono is what you want to take your vinyl collection out for a spin, while the former mode allows you to use your turntable as a speaker like any other Bluetooth device.
If you want to listen to your music in private, there is a headphone input, and you can connect an external sound system with an RCA cable (input on the back).
Victrola Eastwood Turntable: Performance
If you've ever seen an audio player before, you will probably get on well with the Eastwood without even looking at the instruction manual (though we recommend you do!). As previously said, the controls are all clearly labelled, with the pause/play and skip buttons placed next to the power control. The volume control and Bluetooth to Phono switch are on the other side of the display.
As the Eastwood is most likely to be used in Phono mode, we tested this first. To play your record, lift the clear plastic dust cover and place it on the turntable. The compact design means that the record won't actually fit perfectly, and you won't be able to close the dust cover again without removing it. Still, the visual effect is nice.
The tonearm is being held in place by the holder beside the turntable. Just release this, then place the arm above the edge of the record. It will start turning, and you can use the cue lever to lower the needle.
Using the in-built speakers of the Eastwood, we found the audio quality to be adequate if a little bit lacklustre. It could do with more depth, but for the price and convenience factor, we expect most people will be fine with it. The only big downside is that this means it's not as useful as a standalone Bluetooth speaker and is best used as a vinyl player.
Connecting from the turntable to an exterior speaker over Bluetooth is a little more unpredictable, and we had trouble getting the sound to a speaker or our headphones. If you want to use it this way, we recommend connecting via the headphone jack and RCA connection on the rear.
Victrola Eastwood Turntable: Sustainability & maintenance
The only thing you are likely to replace on the Victrola Eastwood is the stylus, which is recommended you do after about 300 hours of use. Unless you notice the audio quality dropping when you should swap it out. The Audio Technica AT-3600LA, which the Eastwood uses, costs about $24 on Amazon.
Victrola Eastwood Turntable: Our verdict
The Victrola Eastwood will suit vinyl newcomers, fresh collectors and anyone with limited space in their home. There are restrictions on its audio power, so we think it would be best connected to an external sound system. Still, the lack of a complicated setup or learning curve is extremely welcome at a time when more and more people are getting into vinyl. The player also looks lovely, making the compact size a design feature rather than a limitation.
About this review, and the reviewer
Caroline is the smart homes editor for Livingetc, covering everything from smart heating to audio devices like the Victrola Eastwood 3-Speed Bluetooth Turntable. The record player was tested by Caroline in her home using both the in-built speakers and an external Bluetooth speaker. A lifelong passion for music somehow hasn't led her to vinyl before recently, so she approached the testing process from a newcomer's perspective.