VPI Launches "The Nomad" Complete Headphone-Friendly Turntable System (Corrected Copy)

VPI Industries today announced "The Nomad" a $995 "all in one" system consisting of a turntable featuring an precision machined MDF platter and plinth assembly and a precision bearing and includes a new less costly 10" aluminum gimbaled tonearm as well as a custom phono preamplifier and headphone amplifier.

In addition The Nomad comes with a pair of premium Grado headphones and a pre-installed Ortofon 2M Red. With both a headphone jack and RCA "outs", The Nomad is both a self-contained dorm-friendly sound system and one that can easily connect to a home theater system, or an iPod docking type sound system that has an "aux" input.

How cool is that? Even better is that Mat Weisfeld, now the company's President debuted the Nomad on Bloomberg News:

volvic's picture

Is that? A few years ago a co-worker wanted to buy her son a turntable for Christmas, told her to go to our local hi-fi store and get the entry level Rega which he loved.  After the holidays she approached me and told me her son now needed a phono preamp with a headphone amp so he could plug it in and play.  With this approach by VPI the young-ins can now have it all in one box.  Great stuff once again from the Weisfeld's.  

John Mitchell's picture

Volvic, I hope you suggested that your coworker not shop at that hi-fi store again. The store's failure to inform the woman that the turntable could not be used on its own to play records indicates, at best, incompetence. They should realize that many people these days are not familiar with turntables.

iyke's picture

Now all VPI needs is to get rid of that horrible platter mats and they'll be on their way to the top of the heap in table manufacturer

azmoon's picture

VPI is already at the top of that heap!

I applaud Matt for handling the dorky interviewer with grace.

akovo's picture

Would be curious to listen to the two setups side by side. The same functionality can be had with both, but the seperate TT/phono combination would be cheaper than the Nomad by $150 and that's even including the Grados in the initial outlay.

I understand the thinking behind the concept, and I do think it's cool; however, if it were my money I'm not sure I'd want to go with the all-in-one solution.

The biggest question for me would be whether or not the Nomad's phono stage could be bypassed, lest I want to upgrade later on.

Russo7516's picture

Will it be a hit for  who they are gearing it towards. They are looking for the 25 to 40 crowd. I mean $ 995 is  a lot of money. Many  good turntables  out there for  less.  The younger crowd  is buying used stuff at half that price . I see the scene in Brooklyn . They new vinyl mecca  I might add. Plus  U Turn  audio is making  Turn-Tables at a fraction of that price . They have  one TT at 199 with a Otofron and the other at 279 comes with a  glass platter and cartridge  ,plus they are made 100% in the US. (Mike take a look into that.) Plus a good pre amp at 200  dollars and they are set. Thats $ 479 . Are the high end companies  to late to grab the young crowds attention ? That is the question ? I speak with the younger  guys on turtables and they say that even 700 is alot of cash ? We all know VPI is a great company hand down. I just hope they are seeing  it from their eyes . $$$$$$$ 

Michael Fremer's picture

We will all find out. I will have the U-Turn to review soon but it's not in the same category as this Traveler variant with a machined aluminum platter and gimbaled arm....

williamsims's picture

Clearly VPI needs to position the TT as a complete high-end music system. $995 sounds like a pretty good way of entering the High End considering the cost of a separate TT, preamp, loudspeakers, and wire.  They're smart boys -- I'm sure they've figured it out.  I hope the rest of you have.

John Mitchell's picture

Russo7516, thanks for mentioning U Turn's turntables. I haven't heard them, but I think it's great that they're trying to make good quality turntables at a price that many people, and especially younger people, can afford.

Brooklyn has a lot of young trust-funders who could buy all the high-end gear they wanted (if you can make an all-cash offer on a multi-million dollar brownstone, you can afford an expensive turntable), but there are many young vinyl lovers living on merely mortal incomes who cannot even dream of spending $1,000 on a turntable.

Russo7516's picture

I know not in the same category as VPI but price wise the young ones aren't looking to spend  a load of money on Turn Tables . 

Jim Tavegia's picture

People...a nice turntable, headphone amp and some nice Grado Cans.  THAT is a great package that you can run into an existing stereo system. All for nearly the price of a Rega P3. 

HankB's picture

.."precision machined MDF platter" not aluminum, however can't see any reason why that should be any less precise using CNC machining. Any attempt at allowing the "yoof" to properly graduate to gray haired golden ears should be encouraged.

PeterPani's picture

The perfect addition to a $ 5k+ Wax Rax Record Storage Cart (sorry, could not resist :-))

FormatOmnivore's picture

The trouble is, nearly a thousand dollars is much more than the average customer would consider affordable, especially as VPI aren't exactly a name known to 'civilians'.

Maybe they should buy a job lot of Bose stickers... wink

Russo7516's picture

This is were I agree with you totally . Where is VPI  going to advertise ? No one can dis-credit the fact that VPI makes outstanding turntables. But are they looking at what the kids today are playing records on. I see alot of  use turn tables/ new cheap ones moving out  the door of used records stores. While not the worlds best it is  what they can afford. 

Paul Boudreau's picture

...choice on the 'phones since the iGrados work fine with iPhones and they're fairly unobtrusive.

music snob's picture

Hi Michael,

Do you know of any good software that you can use to catalog your record collection?  I was looking for some Jim Hall stuff (sad to hear about his death on the radio this a.m.), and I know that I'm forgetting some recordings that I have  - they are somewhere in my collection, ugh.  It's the cross-reference feature that would be so helpful.  And if there is an App for that...dang, that would be handy too.



RobWynn's picture

Hi John,

I use Music Collector from Collectorz.com.  They have both Mac and PC versions, as well as apps for iPhone, etc.  I'm sure there are other software out there but several years back when I researched I liked this the best.  I haven't cataloged my LPs yet, but did my CDs as an export from iTunes... but this can only be done in PC version (a pain because I have a Mac).  They do have a field to note the format, LP, CD, etc.  And if you have a big collection of books, DVDs, comics, etc. they also have apps for those as well.

I primarily use it for taking with me to the store to make sure I don't buy something I already have.



Bmcpherson's picture

let's you log your collection and specify condition of sleeve and wax.   also gives you rough idea of collection value, helps you find used copies for sale.  use the cratedigger app or the site itself on your iphone or android to view collection.  Free.

my new username's picture

... we all chip in and buy the interviewer a copy of The Robb Report, so that a $30K turntable doesn't necessarily seem weird when you realize there are other unnecessary expenditures that some lucky few enjoy, simply because they can.

We're cheering for you, Mat! What a really refreshing idea the Nomad is.

williamsims's picture

dbowker3d's picture

is that one could plug in some nice powered speakers too, and you are done my friend! I would love to have this as a second system or in my office with a pair of Audio engine speakers or similar.

Rudy's picture

Think for a minute, everyone. A headphone plugged directly into a turntable plinth?  Seriously?  We all know how headphones mistakenly get jerked around while wearing them.  I have the same "premium" Grado 'phones (they're good, but not great BTW), and have had a few "accidents" with accidentally moving an arm the wrong way and snapping on the cord a bit.  It's a credit to the Grado cord that it stands up to a little clumsy abuse.

That turntable ought to sound nice when you accidentally "trip" that headphone cable and that 2M Red goes happily skipping across your new $40 LP.  Some sort of "tethered" external phono preamp/headphone amp would have been far safer for our records.  Or at the very least, include a nice long extension cable for the 'phones that we can tie off to something else as a strain relief.  As built, this thing is an ergonomic trainwreck.

My guess is that buyers will go for this as an entry level VPI, not as an all-in-one device. If it gets someone into quality vinyl reproduction, it's all good.