When the digital age hit, turntables took a back seat to compact disc players. Later, MP3 players and smartphones hit the scene. But the comeback of vinyl records has led to a renaissance for record players.
Mat Weisfeld runs VPI, a high-end turntable business his father started in 1978. Sales were sagging a few years ago, Weisfeld told CBS News’ Kenneth Craig, but today things have turned around -- and sales are booming. “I’d say it’s easily doubled if not more,” Weisfeld said.
The Consumer Technology Association predicts turntable sales will hit $194 million in 2016, up from just $19 million 11 years ago.
Weisfeld recently doubled his staff to meet demand and major corporations are doing the same. Panasonic is resurrecting its legendary Technics record player after taking it off shelves in 2010.
Leading the resurgence are digital age millennials like 24-year-old Alex Reynolds, who bought his first turntable a few months ago. “I think it was the cool factor and nostalgia,” Reynolds said.
Weisfeld’s high-end turntables can sell for $4,000 and even higher. “I don’t think it’ll ever go away again like it did in the early ’90s with digital,” Weisfeld said. He counting on people to keep spinning vinyl for generations to come.