Ion Audio is a division of Numark, a company that manufactures a ton of gear targeted at the professional DJ market. The iTTUSB is one of four turntables it offers that features not only a built-in phono preamp but also a USB interface. This table can perform the analog-to-digital conversion on its own and send the digitized audio to your PC via the provided USB cable. We’d advise leaving that task to a good soundcard, but we welcome the flexibility. We also like most of the trade-offs that Ion made: Instead of spending money on an automatic tonearm and a dust cover, Ion splurged on an adjustable tonearm counterweight, a removable headshell that can accommodate a variety of cartridges, and an antiskate adjustment that will extend the life of your stylus.
The absence of even a cueing lever to drop and lift the stylus renders digitizing records with the iTTUSB pretty tedious, especially if you want to record only certain tracks. But we much prefer this table’s audio quality to the Audio-Technica’s. Ion also saved money by including a copy of the open-source audio-editing program Audacity instead of commercial software like Pyro. Audacity won’t burn your digitized tracks to a CD like Pyro can, but there are tons of free apps that will do that, and we found Audacity’s editing tools to be far superior to Pyro’s. On the other hand, we’re much less enthused with this belt-driven table’s plastic platter and generally gaudy looks.