I’ve sorted through the fairly large offering of vinyl record vacuum cleaner machines and other cleaning methods and compiled some of them on this page. On another post HERE I discuss my simple way of cleaning records. To be honest I don’t have any rare or expensive records so my home devised system works great for me. But, for those who have an extensive collection with some rare and valuable records than perhaps a high end cleaning system is for them. After all the price of a high end machine might out way the replacement of a valuable record or two. I’m putting these in order of price starting with the lowest.
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This cleaner is not what I would call “High-End” for the serious audiophile but more for the average collector who just wants to do a decent cleaning. It comes very highly rated on Amazon with a 4.6 out of 5 star rating. The majority of reviews speak very highly of this device. It attaches to a shop vac or your regular household vacuum. A wet vac is recommended if you are doing a wet cleaning.
This vacuum is said to remove embedded dirt and grime from the grooves. It has soft velvet pads to protect the record and comes with replacement pads. It also has two suction reducers to allow the user to regulate to the desired suction. A rubber O Ring to insure a snug fit between the vacuum hose and the vinyl vac and a felt washer is included to protect the record label.
Based on the review and the price I may have to give this a try myself. Check current price on Amazon HERE (Affiliate link)
Here is another machine that comes highly rated (4.3 of 5 stars) on Amazon and is a bit more high end than the previous item. It will improve sound quality of the record and help maintain record value and extend the life of your LP
According to the manufacture this vacuum will improve sound quality, help maintain record value and extend the life of your LP. The Record Doctor V has the same vacuum motor and cleaning strip as the more expensive machines, but it does not carry the cost of the expensive motor that turns the record for you. So you turn the records by hand and save some money.
Some features include a powerful high-performance vacuum motor, vinyl protecting felt cleaning strips, hand record turner, roller bearing and a 6-foot power cord.
Upon reading the reviews on this machine it appears to be worth the money and most of the reviewers are quite content with their purchase. You can see current price on Amazon HERE. (Affiliate Link)
Alright we continue to climb the ladder with the VPI HW-16.5 machine. This is another one with very favorable reviews but appears a bit more difficult to find. They are out there but best priced one at Amazon for $699 but only one in stock. A few places I see around $800 but availability seems to be an issue.
Perhaps some can be found on Ebay as I did see a few ranging from $350 on up. Some may not be the latest model but that may be the way to go. This is not a fully automatic machine but for fully auto you’re going to be looking at over a grand or two for sure.
The VPI HW-16.5 features a 35-second cleaning cycle per side and no liquid touches the label. It removes old residue and prevents future buildup. It is also fully enclosed so there is no splashing mess. There is an 8oz bottle of cleaning solution and cleaning brush included.
From the manufacturer: The HW-16.5 has become the standard in affordable record cleaning machines. It has a high torque 18 RPM turntable motor and a self aligning vacuum suction tube. The internal collection system is made of stainless steel to prevent corrosion.
From reading the review this appears to be a solid machine that seems to do the job as there are many satisfied reviewers. It rates 4.6 of 5 stars. Also, notes this machine is 120 volts only so international users are out of luck on this one. It also weighs 33 pounds so shipping cost may be hefty. I see two of them offered on Amazon have free shipping.
Check out the VPI HW-16.5 on Amazon HERE. (Affiliate Link)
This machine does not have a lot of reviews but the ones it has are very favorable. The WCS-3 has a very strong vacuum and does a fantastic job according to several reviewers. Simple to use and simple to maintain.
Features a heavy aluminum chassis and has automatic rotation during scrub and vacuum cycles. Also includes record cleaning brush, rubber seal record clamp and removable power cord.
The interlocking alloy chassis is beautiful to look at and does not warp or degrade like other wood models. The high-powered vac really sucks the junk out of the grooves and completely dries the record in one rotation thus saving time and reducing heat and static exposure to your records during the process. This machine is 10.6 x 14.6 x 15 inches and weighs has a shipping weight of 30 pounds. Last time I looked there was only one available on Amazon. See it on Amazon HERE. (Affiliate Link)
This is the holy grail as far as record cleaning machines go and is the most expensive machine on my list. I’m sure just abut any serious audiophile would like to have one of these sitting on his/her shelf.
Those who use it have nothing but high praise for the Audio Desk Machine. The Audio Desk Vinyl Cleaner Pro is the first LP cleaning machine that incorporates an ultrasonic cleaning cycle. It also uses more conventional mechanical cleaning with it’s bi-directional rotating microfibre cleaning drums. Together these two methods result in the cleanest record ever! Besides being a very through system it is also automatic.
This machine is so easy to use. Just set the record into the slot, push the button and come back in five minutes. You will return to discover a meticulously cleaned and completely dry LP as both sides are cleaned and dried at the same time.
This machine will set you back $3500-$4000 but from what I read those who have bought it are not disappointed. Here is a link where you can go buy one if you think you want this beauty. This is not an affiliate link so sadly I get no commission if you were to buy one.
I’ve narrowed down the selection of vinyl record vacuum cleaner machines for you with the five I feel will do the trick for collectors of different levels. Starting with number one the cheapest (but still very good) to one of the most expensive for the discerning audiophile.
This list is not complete by a long shot but is a good starting point for those looking for a way to do a good cleaning of their records.
I hope this has benefited someone and as always I welcome comments and feedback below. Let me know if you have something different and how it is working for you and I might expand this list.