Upright Turntable - Mitsubishi LT-640
The audiophiles among you will probably cringe at the very thought, but here is a linear tracking turntable that plays records while upright. The unmistakable 80's styling is a reminder of the time when electronics manufacturers were trying to come up with new ways to market turntables, whose design had remained stubbornly horizontal for decades.
It was the dawn of the CD, and records were rapidly losing out to the cassette. Manufacturers scrambled to keep LP's relevant and to find ways to make their playback more convenient. The Mitsubishi LT-640 is a fairly basic model, but some "new wave" turntables of the time had sophisticated features such as track programmability or two tone arms that could play both sides of an LP without flipping. Upright and drawer units were an attempt at making turntables take up less space (and were often made by lower end firms), and integrate better into the "entertainment centers" of the era.
Of course, aesthetics should take a back seat to sound quality. This Mitsubishi doesn't sound too bad at all. I was a bit suspicious at the stylus being pushed into the groove by a spring, but the exerted pressure seems good enough that I didn't hear any distortion or any other audio problems.
I think that a normal turntable is always going to sound better since every part of the LP manufacturing and playback process is designed with a regular old record player in mind. I got this table for $20 so I wasn't expecting audiophile quality, but let's face it... this novel turntable is all about looks. Or maybe this table will let you listen to records in a space where you couldn't set up a conventional record player. In any case, the fact that it sounds nice as well is the bonus that we'd all hope for.