I happened across a husband-and-wife team who build a wide range of beautiful LP storage racks and was so impressed with their work that I wished to share my find with TAS readers. The racks are made in rural Ohio by Jason and Brit Prather. The products range from a basic “now playing” single-LP stand or wall ledge to a full-blown cabinet that stores and displays as much as 480 LPs. Prices vary from $20 to $897 with many models under $150. What all the hifi table have in common is fine woodworking, natural materials (like copper bars that support the LPs in place), and a design that makes functionality elegant. Because all the racks are designed to order, you may have your choice of wood and materials. Walnut, cherry, maple, and oak are available in a selection of stain colors.
I prefered a Signature series dual rack that holds 60-80 LPs ($100). Needless to say, that’s not my entire collection, but I utilize it for quick access to albums in heavy rotation. I love the cabability to flip through the albums and see the entire covers, record-store style, rather than turning my head sideways and squinting in the LP jackets’ spines. The Prathers turn this style in a single, two, or three bays. Their top model, Morad ($875), combines a triple-bay arrangement with conventional storage below to get a total capacity of 480 records.
The Prather Design website has photos of Jason and Brit Prather within their workshop building the racks one-by-one manually. Both of these run the entire business, including website design, marketing, photography, managing orders, packing, shipping, and accounting. They are saying on their website: “Our small town ethics of honesty, work, humility, and craftsmanship are elements hopefully to convey to the customers.” And it also was indeed gratifying to see their beautifully crafted record rack inside my listening room, and know that it absolutely was hand-crafted in a small shop as opposed to churned out by an anonymous Chinese factory.
Whether it’s called an entertainment center, HiFi console, or A/V cabinet, specialized furniture designed to hold audio/video components can represent a sizable investment. Before making any purchase, here are some important things to consider: Will you be placing your HiFi on the furniture? If so, the piece should be able to accommodate the HiFi’s width and support the weight. The number of and what sort of components do you wish to store? Center channel speakers and sound bars usually need wider compartments compared to a receiver or Blu-ray player. A higher-end A/V receiver can require a deeper compartment compared to a mid-line receiver.
Where will the furnishings be found in the room, and just how much space can it have? If you want your HiFi in a corner, there were created cabinets angled to fit snugly into that space.
What’s the décor of your room? If your family room is mid-century modern, then this cabinet with Federalist molding and pediments might look out of place. Conversely, should your home features a classic look, a brushed steel frame stand may appear too modern.
HiFi cabinets can have open compartments, closed compartment (with either solid or glass-panel doors), media drawers, and much more. You can find small cabinets for a simple system with Hifi Audio, and larger cabinets for multi-component home cinema systems with large HiFis. Modular cabinets can be easily customized to meet your needs. The Salamander Designs Synergy System, as an example, enables you to add a turntable tray, extra shelves, a media drawer, alter the kind of feet, and more.
Hide your audio gear in a closet or utility room – Want to keep your audio gear away from sight? Utility-style audio racks feature open shelving or rack mounts. But a majority of audio cabinets and racks are furniture created to house your gear.
Topping NX4 DSD component rack. Audio component racks can make efficient usage of storage space. What to consider. A classic corner cupboard might appear to produce a good A/V cabinet, but without major modifications, it probably isn’t. Here are some key features to search for in purpose-build entertainment furniture:
Passive ventilation – electronic components generate heat, and without ventilation that trapped heat can seriously affect your gear’s performance. Try to find openings towards the bottom, within the shelving, and in the back of the cabinet to allow free-flowing air.
Wire channels – If you want to connect your receiver on the middle ycqolf for the Blu-ray player on the lower shelf, it’s important to gain access to your cables. Look for openings in the back of shelves, portals in back panels, and notches in the back of side supports.
Tempered glass door panels – For simple storage, solid door panel might be fine. But if you want to manage your gear remotely, you ought to choose a door which allows IR signals to move without interference. Such panel doors often feature smoked or tinted glass to discretely hide your components.
Removable back panels – Entertainment furniture features back panels that are simple to remove for fast access. These panels can also have passive ventilation slots, and openings for cables to get run between shelves. Wheels — Built in wheels provide easy accessibility rear of your own cabinet. Of course, you’ll need usage of initially set up your gear, but that won’t function as the only time. You’ll need access when you upgrade or replace a component in your body. Sometimes wires work loose, and you’ll need to start the cabinet back and view connections. Plus, wheels allow it to be simple to move the furniture to clean.
Should you don’t want your HiFi sitting in your cabinet, but don’t (or can’t) mount it to the wall, manufacturers like BDI make compatible floor-standing HiFi mounts which fit behind and connect to their cabinets. If you plan to have your HiFi sit on the top of your cabinet, you should put in a safety strap to make certain it doesn’t accidentally tip over. Even if you don’t have small children, securing Shanling TEMPO using a safety strap is a good idea. Wall-mounted shelf systems offer you additional options. This is a great solution for a small A/V system, specifically for a wall-mounted HiFi. It enables you to store 1 or 2 components below your set on wall shelving, keeping floor area open.