Fluance RT85 Turntable Review: Today's Best $500 Table? [VIDEO]

Manufacturer & Model
Fluance RT85 Turntable
Fantastic pre-mounted cartridge, smooth operation and an overall refined experience. Balanced sound and a great price point.
The RT85 is not a newcomer, but a few years in it is still holding its own at the price point. The inclusion of the Ortofon 2M Blue cartridge is a game-changer in terms of performance and value, and a second option has been recently added at the same price point with a Nagaoka MP-110. If you're looking for the best $500 turntable, don't overlook this turntable in favor of a more recently release model. This jumped into the market with a huge advantage and competitors still haven't necessarily caught up.

The Fluance RT85 is not a new turntable to the market, but I'm now in the market and I wanted to know if it compares as strongly today as it did when it was originally released.

I had a bit of an epiphany while I was editing this video as to WHY exactly I'm in the market for a new turntable. As much as I'm not afraid of tweaking and modding and upgrading and essentially going down the rabbit hole of maximizing performance, there are many times that I just want to listen to music, or watch TV and not have to mess with this or that.

For much the same reason that I have a Sonos Playbar soundbar connected to the television in our living room, I'm starting to tire of the turntable fuss. My previous turntable was fine, but it had required a lot of tweaking and upgrades to get there, and the ongoing maintenance and upkeep and the fragile nature of things had grown old. I want to choose a record, put it on, maybe run a brush over it and listen. And if I do want to swap out a cartridge for a different sound/vibe, I don't want to disassemble the entire 2ch rig to pull out the table and perform major surgery. I'm looking for a healthy balance of quality and ease of use in my next turntable.

Less hassle, more vibe.

Did the Fluance RT85 live up to the task? Watch the video below!

Fluance RT85 Reference Turntable
  • Cartridge: Ortofon 2M Blue
  • Platter: Acrylic
  • Built-In Preamp: None
  • Drive: Belt-Driven
  • Motor: Isolated DC Servo
  • Arm Type: Static Balanced, S-Type, Aluminum
  • Anti-Skate: Yes, Adjustable
  • Cueing Lever: Yes
  • Headshell Mount: H-4 Bayonet
  • Output Voltage: 5.5mV
  • Plinth Material: MDF

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