Crosley Vs Victrola Record Players – Which One Is Better?

james williamson author James Williamson
  May 18th, 2024

Whenever someone starts a conversation about record players, there is no way the Victrola and Crosley record players aren’t talked about.

Well, these record players from Victrola and Crosley are the main reasons behind the resurgence of vinyl.

Both of these brands have established themselves as leading record player manufacturers so people often get confused between these two.

And, this confusion often leads to a non-ending Crosley vs Victrola record player debate. So, to end this debate once and for all, I ordered a Crosley Cruiser Plus suitcase record player and borrowed Victrola Journey Plus from a friend for some time.

After using both of these for a while and testing them, we have drafted this article in which we have shared our testing results and our personal experience using these record players.

But, there is one more thing that I want you to know. In this article, we haven’t discussed whether these record players are good or not; instead, we have closely compared both players to give you a perfect and unbiased comparison between them.

So, let’s start.

Crosley Vs Victrola – Which Is Better?

After doing a lot of tests and comparing the results of both record players, I can say that the Victrola record player is a lot better than the Crosley record player.

Victrola record players offer better sound quality through built-in speakers as well as external mediums. The build quality is also better, and you will get a smoother operating experience with Victrola as compared to Crosley.

But before making up your mind to purchase any one of them, I suggest you check out these articles about Crosley record players and Victrola record players.

Now, let me share my test experience with you.

How We Tested Them:

Well, we have tested and compared both record players in every aspect and drafted the results from the most important to the least important factor.

So, let’s dig deeper.

1) Sound Quality:

Well, I tested the sound quality by playing one of my favorite vinyl- “Ain’t No Grave by Johnny Cash” on both record players, and finally, I can say that the Victrola easily beats Crosley in sound quality.

First, I want to highlight that these suitcase record players are not meant to play bass-heavy records. Secondly, Victrola outputs a well-balanced flat sound, although, I didn’t get the bass I wanted but the vocals of Johnny Cash were very clear.

On the other hand, in Crosley, I noticed impedance misbalance, which resulted in harshness in the sound, and also the vocals of Johnny Cash were not as clear as they sounded on the Victrola, or I can also say that the sound is very much distorted.

Well, I hadn’t expected this much difference in sound quality because the speaker’s specifications for both record players are the same, i.e., 4Ω, 3W x 2. However, the speaker magnets of Victrola’s are much beefier than Crosley’s.

So, these are the test results that we have performed with built-in speakers. Now, let’s talk about the sound quality of other mediums too.

External Mediums:

Here are the results of sound testing we have done on external mediums, but there is one thing that I want you to know: the sound quality of a record player or turntable mostly depends on the stylus and cartridge.

In these record players, ceramic cartridges and sapphire styli are used, which aren’t considered good by any audiophiles, and the sound signals generated by ceramic styli are nowhere near the level of moving magnet or moving coil cartridges.

So, don’t expect that the sound quality will drastically improve by just connecting your record players to external mediums like external speakers or headphones.

Now, we are sharing the results of the test done by connecting these record players to external mediums.

i) External Speakers

Both record players have external speaker support, so I have tested both by connecting them to my external speakers and playing the same “Ain’t No Grave” vinyl.

And this time, I noticed better sound quality from both players. The vocals of Johnny got more clarity, and I could even hear some bass that I had expected from the built-in speakers.

Both performed well and produced decent sound quality.

ii) Headphones

Just like external speakers, both record players also have a headphone jack. I have connected my headphones and played the same vinyl, and the results are almost the same.

I got decent sound quality with more clarity and better bass as compared to built-in speakers.

2) Testing Built-in Speakers (Using Aux-In Feature):

The aux-in feature allows us to connect our external devices to the speakers of these record players.

I thought it would be the best way to test the built-in speaker quality because the sound quality of record players is affected by various factors, i.e., stylus, cartridge, wiring, tonearm, and much more.

And with the aux-in feature, I could eliminate all these factors and perform the test on in-built speakers only.

So, I connected my smartphone to these record players and played the same song, “Ain’t No Grave,” on Spotify.

This time, both record players’s speakers performed slightly better as compared to their previous performances with vinyl records.

But still, the sound quality is not good enough to enjoy the music. I don’t know why manufacturers have added this aux-in feature when their speakers aren’t good enough.

Well, I won’t be connecting my smartphone to the speakers of these record players to listen to the music.

3) Bluetooth Support:

The Crosley Cruiser Plus supports in/out Bluetooth, i.e., you can connect your external devices to your record players and listen to your music through the record player’s speakers, or you can connect your record player to the external Bluetooth speakers and listen to your vinyl records through Bluetooth speakers.

On the other hand, the Victrola record player only supports one Bluetooth mode, i.e., you can connect your external devices to the record player and listen to music through the record player’s speakers.

4) Speed:

While testing, I noticed inconsistent speed issues on both record players, i.e., the wow and flutter aren’t good enough. The reasons for inconsistent speed can be the bad quality of the motor, belt, and plastic platter.

But you can always fix the speed issues by adjusting the motor speed screws or pitch control.

The Crosley record player has a pitch control knob through which you can easily adjust the speed, but the Victrola record player doesn’t have pitch control, so to adjust the speed, you need to open the motor’s speed screws. To adjust the speed with speed screws, you can follow this guide.

5) Build Quality:

Both record players are built with plastic.

The Victrola gave a leather-type feel to the suitcase, while on the other hand, the Crosley has put fabric over the suitcase, which probably gives it a better feel and looks.

So, while talking about the feel and looks of the suitcase, Crosley takes the lead here.

But, if we talk about the quality of the buttons and dialer on the plinth, Victrola has done a better job.

The volume and BT/Line In/Phono dialer are a little heavier than Crosley’s, and while operating the Victrola, I feel a better and smoother experience.

So, in terms of build quality, the Victrola is better.

6) Tracking Force:

Well, I have used the stylus gauge to measure the tracking force.

The tracking force of the Victrola Journey Plus is around 6 g, and on the other hand, the tracking force of the Crosley Cruiser Plus is around 5.7g.

7) Durable:

Both record players are available to buy for under $70.

For $70, you will get a whole record player, i.e., a turntable, speakers, amplifier, ceramic cartridge, sapphire stylus, and much more.

And, as we all know, these record players are manufactured by companies to make a profit, so even in these $70, they have made a lot of tweaks to make some profit on each unit.

Well, the profit margins in these record players are created by switching from good-quality components to cheaper components that are mostly of bad quality.

These bad-quality components can fail anytime, so both record players are not durable at all.

8) Design:

From the design perspective, both record players are amazing. Honestly, I liked their design a lot. It has a retro feel with its cool, vibrant colors and design.

From what I have observed, the Crosley record players are better than Victrola in design.

Both of these record players have their units designed in basic color combinations, but Crosley has taken one step further and improved their design by using beautiful patterns, glitter, stickers, and much more.

I have also seen Crosley record players designed according to popular franchises like Captain America, Iron Man, Mickey Mouse, etc., which elevates the design of record players to a whole new level.

On the other hand, Victrola record players are mostly seen in common color combinations, but recently, I have seen that they are also trying to improve their design, but currently, they are not at the level of Crosley.


That’s the comparison between the Victrola and Crosley record players. If you have any questions, feel free to comment below. We will get back to you as soon as possible.

james williamson
About Author: James Williamson

I have been a music enthusiast since childhood and I love talking about music bands, artists, vinyl, and music equipments. I have launched TurntableWave to help people avoid the mistakes that I had made while entering the vinyl world. In my free time, you will find me fishing or playing basketball.

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