Onkyo CP-1050 Review

ONKYO CP- 1050 Review

Vinyl records have been around for a while and the number of sales has continued to rise since then. Onkyo brand realized this and started making turntables way back to 1997, yea, one of the newest brands of turntables. Onkyo CP-1050 is another new direct drive turntable from Onkyo and you can expect to get nothing less than the best from it. 

ONKYO Manual Record Player CP-1050 (D)

The turntable comes with an understated design, not trying to look like one from Europe. It has an extremely solid build with an amazingly straightforward setup. What’s more? You get an Audio Technica phono cartridge premounted on the tonearm, that’s the best you could get out there.

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ONKYO CP- 1050

Onkyo is not a novice brand in the turntable business as they have been in business for a few years now. The brand has been widely recognized for its unique design skills and the manufacturing of devices that are of high quality. 

First, the turntable comes with an owner.s manual which explains all the setup details in a detailed manner. It holds an Audio-Technica moving magnet phono cartridge which sounds a lot better than every other brand of cartridge. 

The model was made to be highly resistant to vibrations and knocks that could affect if from external. It comes with a die-cast aluminum platter with a very thick rubber mat together with a detachable headshell and an S-shaped tonearm. The rear panel of CP-1050 has stereo RCA connectors and the device measures 17.6 x 6.25 x 14.5 inches while weighing 8.6kg (19 pounds).

The CP-1050 has a crisp, clear, and dynamic sound. You can also look forward to an excellent wide bass definition from the soundstage. The phono cartridge that comes with it sounds better than many other standard models. No matter the other side work you are engaged in, be it working, reading, talking, and the likes, CP-1050 keeps you focused on the music you are listening to. 

ONKYO Manual Record Player CP-1050 (D)

The Onkyo CP-1050 has a handsome look and a great feel to it. It is one of the retro-’70s era styled turntables with a black MDF frame and a brushed sturdy aluminum control panel. You can easily mount the device on any shelf as the device is made to sit on 4 elastomer damped feet that work excellently for their isolation job. 

The device’s direct-drive operation holds a customized brushless DC motor, a 12-inch die-cast topped with a thick rubber mat, a quartz lock control system, low wow and flutter, and a 60dBs signal to noise ratio. The classic  S-shaped tonearm provides a befitting offset angle that is fitted with a headshell that is non-offset. This is almost the same thing as what Technica used in their SL-12oo series. 

Moreso, the arm holds dual gimbaled that immensely looks like those on the SL-1200, even though they have a price and quality difference. To feel the ‘play’ in the microscopic vinyl playback universe basically means it has to be audible to some length. In fact, just a gentle tug on the tonearm shows also a reasonable amount of play. This kind of clatter is mostly heard as a glittering signature at the top and a bit less and punchy at the bottom.

However, the tonearm of CP-1050 does not give room for either azimuth or VTA/SRA adjustments. The major work of an average turntable is to go round at the correct speed. The target frequency of Onkyo CP-1050 is 3150Hz and this is a ‘spot-on’. There is only a minor deviation from the mean frequency in both absolute maximum and relative.

Interestingly, the low pass filtering of the record player works to remove effects of record eccentricity which ends up giving a superb result. This is the best it can get regardless of the price, such an awesome feature.

Basically, the speed variation of Onkyo models is greater when the traces are far smoother. You can be sure about your option of Onkyo CP-10-50 not to go wrong because it entails all you’d ever need in a turntable. Let’s scroll through some of its amazing features you might want to put into consideration. 

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Below are some of the features that gives this brand a great edge amongst others. Let’s dive in:

Direct Drive

It’s a good thing that that Onkyo added a direct drive to this player. This actually helps to improve the performance of the device to a stable working. The CP-1050 has a 33.34rpm result with a 0% deviation. This is a good response and it can be in some ways aligned with the belt drive. This also helps in the brushing of dust off a capable construction principle. 

Also, you have an approximated flying start with the player, purely as a bonus. This implies that audiophiles have the option of putting the needle in the groove before the audio starts and avoiding getting a loud wake-up sound that comes from typical contemporary turntables.

The model is up to cruising speed even before the music starts. This is also very useful when playing a track in the middle of the album. This feature doesn’t only have an instant start but also a typical sudden stop when the stop button is pushed. It comes in handy for listeners who are in a hurry to remove the album and play a new one.

When rolled out the usual way, the engine brake is not activated when the power button is pushed. The Onkyo model has a direct operation and a rigid chassis. Some direct operation might not be appreciated but it still got some loyal and relentless fanbase. 

Detachable Cables

Another feature that is worth mentioning is the RCA terminals in Onyo CP-1950. It is a great thing that the RCA cables in the model are replaceable cables rather than the fixed RCA cables with separate grounding cables as some models would have it.

This is very advantageous in two ways, you can choose to upgrade the signal cables anytime you want to and also, whenever there is the placement of importance on good interconnects that should give little cause for skepticism to you with a kind of restrained connection with cables, then you can easily tell it is from the weak signals from the MC pickup. 


The CP-1050’s tonearm looks so much like that of SL-1210. The tonearm is produced by Halpin, a top supplier of turntable parts to different manufacturers of turntables. It is an S-shaped arm with a detachable headshell, another parameter you should consider. The headshell is not only removable but also has a mount that is compatible with Ortofon’s standard construction. 

The tonearm might not be optimally adjusted, it, however, gives a somewhat quality impression on arrival. The vertical and horizontal storage can be adjusted with s size XS screwdriver with a lot of careful tightening to remove any form of slack from the tonearm. It is a good idea to relieve the tad always after a tight connection has been achieved.

The quality impression after all of these is always lifted to a top-notch. Another regulator that could be missed is the azimuth and VTA adjustment possibility. You can easily take a smooth dominion over with a headshell for azimuth adjustment. VTA, on the other hand, is not really very easy to adjust.

If the arm is in the opposite direction, the form of shim can be used between the headshell and pickup. Onkyo has made this principle of VTA adjustment available in most of their models. The detachable headshell is a great gain as you can make a quick switch pickup and a collection of headshells that equates to your pickup collection.

This makes it very comfortable to mount any pickup in a loose headshell than when the tonearm is fixed. With Onkyo CP- 1050, adjusting both the anti-skating and needle is quite easy and at the same time, there is a minimal adjustment of the legs too for users with spirit level at hand. 


The pickup might not be the best you find on sales as Onkyo has chosen to put just a little amount of money on the pickup The pickup is also one of the important parts of the record player, but most users exchange theirs anyways.

The pickup of CP-1050 is manufactured by Audio-Technica with a recommended needle of 3.5 grams. Once it’s Audio-Technica, you can expect to get excellent pickups from the player. This can be proven once the vinyl is played on the turntable.

CP-1050 Set-up and Sound

Are you worried about setting up Onkyo CP-1050? Keep calm, it has an easy setup and with its included Audio Technica 600 series cartridge, you get to track at 3.5 grams. However, for audiophiles who want results that are much more than this, the cartridge and even the stylus can easily be replaced. Either way, you get to listen to incredibly clear and detailed sound via the player.

ONKYO Manual Record Player CP-1050 (D)

Another cartridge that can be put into consideration for replacement is the M97xE which is known to be a generally calm-sounding cartridge. It usually comes with a clean but brisk high frequency. The top, rather than being harsh gives life to the music with a smooth top end. 

When speaking of sounding and image sustainability in general, Onkyo is far superior to many brands found out there as they produce a solid sound, a reasonable level of depth, and a three-dimensional stage. 


  • It comes with an MM phono preamp with a USB output
  • A 12-inch die-cast aluminum platter
  • Clean low-torque direct-drive motor
  • 60 dB Signal to noise ratio
  • Analog signals are converted to USB
  • Black woodgrain finish sturdy anti-vibration MDF cabinet construction
  • Easy front and back panel
  • Compact size
  • Records are converted into high-resolution audio digital.
  • Delivers audiophiles grade sound
  • Less than 0.15% wow and flutter
  • S-shaped tonearm with aluminum static balance
  • Quartz lock regulator system for High-precision rotation
  • DC Motor that is brushless and customized
  • A stable direct-drive for reduced low-frequency 
  • Detachable acrylic dust cover
  • Speed stability leaving quick spin to playbacks
  • Rubber slipmat with resonance damping bottom
  • Detachable headshell which corresponds with other aftermarket cartridges
  • Sturdy anti-vibration MDF cabinet construction with a woodgrain finish in either black or yellow
  • Counterweight tonearm that supports ranges of cartridge weights 
  • RCA phono output terminals with gold plated
  • Dedicated grounding space
  • Selectable easy button speeds at 33 ⅓ and 45 rpm
  • Adjustable and large height anti-vibration feet.
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The turntable base is made of solid thickness MDF and, at a glance and knocking on the case, seemed to be a solid and well-made piece of construction that is almost crucial in this case. The 12-brush brushless DC motor is quiet and precise, and with the use of the already notorious Quartz-lock system and low torque drive, there is no problem in transmitting noise and vibration to the base structure and further to the turntable tonearm and cartridge. 

CP-1050 is truly made of sturdy and solid MDF that one could tell at a glance it is a well-crafted piece of construction. The aluminum plate is also excellently cast with a combination of a thick rubber mat which also works not only for vibration protection but also to guard the record surface during rotation.

The tonearm has the classic S design which is 230mm long with excellently executed PTO bearings that hold its position and average gentility. A great number of cartridge customs will have no problem whatsoever interacting with it. 


When speaking of build quality, the record player is a solid one. It holds a rigid chassis and a direct operation. The direct drive provides a stable and smooth working competing with many others in this range. The player also has a 0% deviation in speed rotation offering a 33.34 RPM. This is a superb feature when the price point is being compared and considered. 

Since the player has a pretty easy set-up, you can instantly start and listen to your favorite music without any hassle. You tend to experience the importance of this feature when you want to save time while ripping the vinyl record to add another. There is also the DC motor with a  control system that comes with a quartz clock. 

Its 12-inch platter also comes from die-cast aluminum which works towards a smooth, clean, precise, and stable rotation. The rubber slip-mat protects the record player and makes the motor produce lesser noise. The unique craftsmanship of the record player can not also go unnoticed when seen. The deck weight when combined works to effectively reduce vibration thus, producing a clear and open analog sound. 

ONKYO CP- 1050 Review

Upgrade and Customization

Since the turntable holds some RCA terminals, the signal cables can easily be upgraded. As mentioned earlier, there are lots of benefits that can be gotten from the device when you decide to upgrade the cartridge or even the stylus. You get a light tracking at close to 2.5 grams compared to the 3.5 grams that come with it initially.


When you go for Onyo CP-1050, you can expect good audio quality and nothing less. The tonearm does not give you much issue when ripped out of the box because it does most of its work automatically, like optimal adjustments and the likes.

However, you can easily adjust the vertical and horizontal storage manually as this seems an easy task for users. Moreso, screwdrivers can be used for lessening any form of bearing slack. This will help clear up the audio to an immense extent and you can enjoy your favorite music while listening with the device. 


CP-1050 comes with 2 awesome gold-plated RCA phono terminals that provide you with clear right and left channel signals for connection to an external stereo amp, phono preamp, or A/V receiver. Onkyo brand has put great work on the quality by ensuring that the RCA phono terminals are gold plated which automatically enhances connectivity and offers durability. 

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  • Sturdy and unique build quality
  • Easy setup
  • Gold plated RCA outputs
  • Extreme resistance to knocks and vibrations
  • Manuals for different control
  • Detachable head-shell
  • Room to upgrade cartridge and stylus
  • A luxurious and unique black-wood grain finish
  • Does not support USB recording
  • The style could be a bit borderline generic
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Our Verdict

Basically, the record player offers a clear, detailed, and dynamic sound, but not the very best you can get on sales for turntables. Its soundstage is decently broad and you can rely on their product since Onkyohas gained its ground with the manufacture of durable devices. I’d submit that the record player is decent and good enough for what is paid for. 

Final Thought

The Onkyo CP-1050 is a handsome and well-crafted direct-drive turntable that offers good value for every penny spent on it. For its price range, it definitely is a good turntable to be on your list. With its special characteristics and features, it is a good choice that might eventually end up on your cabinet. You really can’t go wrong with CP-1050.

However, this might not be a perfect choice for audiophiles in training but for audiophiles who know their ways around styli and cartridges, know how to work them, and the best to go for when upgrading. As mentioned earlier, after a couple of usages, these features might need to be upgraded, so it takes the expert to achieve excellence. 

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