There's a few weeks happy deliberation in this new Pro-Ject turntable

But you might want to fast-track your thought process if you want the limited George Harrison version

Was rather hoping we'd left this archaic nonsense back in '16.

Oh, it's alright for you. Jerking through life like a Clanger, your every work/play move predetermined by puppeteers of propiety. Some of us run at a higher frame rate. Forced to make our own decisions, we often crunch through the meagre pile of available options and find ourselves, whirring and clicking, in a mental wasteland. Sometimes, just to feed our gears, we have to invent a need. And that's how we wind up wrestling with a ZigBee smarthome system, or trying to install a Japanese megatoilet in the en-suite. Or buying a turntable. Because it’s that, or die. You know?

Uh, I don’t think I do know.

An envious position. The good thing about turntables is that they absolutely hog processor time: what deck, what cartridge, what phono amp, what de-static widget? Never mind what to listen to! Ah, blessed distraction.

But this… is some kind of solution?

Yes. Pro-Ject’s Essential range has always been ideally placed – fancy enough to be special, affordable enough to be an impulse buy. The new ‘III’ version gets various build tweaks plus a better cartridge, up from an Ortofon OM 5 to an OM 10. Standard red, white or black models are £239, or you can happily ponder upgrading to the opaque acrylic platter, as seen above, for £279.


What’s the one with the man on? 

Spend long enough thinking and researching and making spreadsheets – because actually buying it would mean you have to find a new project – and the company will reward you with a special. In this case, a 2500-edition George Harrison version, to celebrate the impending Beatle’s anniversary. Finding the extra cash for that - it's £429 - will eat up a few months of existence. In fact, maybe there’s more stuff around the house that can be replaced by Beatles-themed specials. Hmm… File > New Sheet.