Sony has presented their modern vinyl player the PS-HX500 in the "above average" price category, with unique function of digitizing records in high-resolution audio. The model also supports direct tonearm.
The design of the Sony PS-HX500 is very discreet and completely minimalist. The fully black table with strict lines is made of high-density MDF with a metal-like texture. For protection against dust there is a transparent cover.
On the aluminum disk, there is a high-quality rubber mat. The PS-HX500 tonearm is also an element created by combining with an integrated pick-up head and an additional counterweight adjustment.
The player has its connectors on the back. A small switch allows choosing between the output to the phono corrector and the linear one. In the first case, you need to connect the player to the corresponding component, otherwise the sound will be very quiet. The signal from the line output can be fed directly to the amplifier. The ground terminal is located next to the stereo outputs to suppress the buzz.
The setup process is quite simple: detailed instructions make it easy. You only need to install the aluminum support disc carefully and put the rubber backing on the MDF base, balance the tonearm with the counterweight and roll-off compensator.
The PS-HX500 has a traditional belt-less suspension construction with electronic speed control and built-in switchable phono-scene with a moving magnet.
The Sony PS-HX500 review is a good way to find out about its USB interface, which provides a rare opportunity to copy vinyl records due to the built-in analog-digital converter that allows connecting the turntable to a computer or a laptop and save the records in digital form as tracks in high quality formats (DSD up to 5.6 MHz and PCM up to 192 kHz / 24 bit), using the special Sony High Res Audio Recorder application for Mac or Windows. The software also makes it possible to edit recordings, break them into separate tracks, etc.
The model supports two speeds of 33.3 and 45 RPM. The speed switch is located on the front panel.
The Sony PS-HX500 specs are all about versatility: the player can function as a standard analog player, transmitting a cartridge level signal that you can connect to a phono preamp – equipped amplifier or through its own built-in phono preamplifier at the linear level. You can also connect both digital and analog outputs at the same time, which allows recording the tracks on a computer while listening to them through the Hi-Fi system.
The player doesn’t have the irreproachable sound quality, but the $500 price range justifies its multifunctionality.