Another Record Store Day is behind us. One of the coolest exclusive releases this year wasn’t vinyl at all, and carries a name that will have you thinking “droid.” The RSD3 was released by Crosley as an exclusive available only in participating brick-and-mortar stores. It’s a 3-inch turntable—inspired by the 8ban record format that had a brief period of popularity in Japan 15 years ago.
Crosley RSD3: A Mini, Portable Turntable
It’s a safe bet that the Crosley RSD3 is probably the smallest fully functional turntable that most people have seen. It’s just over 6-inches wide, under 3-inches tall and weighs only one pound. The platter is belt-driven and can be powered by USB or with four AA batteries. It has a built-in speaker, but if you want to go bigger and louder the RSD3 is equipped with a 3.5mm AUX output jack so you can connect it to an audio system. There’s even a dust cover included.
One of the things that adds to the visual appeal of the RSD3 is the included cartridge. Despite the wee form factor, it’s equipped with a full-sized Audio Technica AT-3600 cartridge. The effect is somewhat akin to a puppy with the overgrown paws you know it will grow into as an adult—except this turntable will always be tiny. The inclusion of the AT-3600 is a nice touch that ensures those 3-inch records sound their best while protecting the vinyl from damage.
The obvious question is what are you going to play on this thing? The entire turntable is dwarfed by a standard 7-inch single. To get you started, Crosley includes a 3-inch version of Foo Fighters’ “Big Me” in the box. And if you get tired of playing one song over and over, other 3-inch singles were released from bands including Rancid, Bad Religion, and The Interrupters, with more promised for the future.
Always up for something quirky, Jack White’s Third Man Records also released some 3-inch vinyl for Record Store Day, with a six-single box set of White Stripes music. Then there are the singles the White Stripes released on 3-inch vinyl back in 2005. You’ll need deep pockets for that collection, though…
Why Would You Want the RSD3?
Besides being arguably the cutest (and most portable) turntable ever released, the Crosley RSD3 looks great on a shelf and is destined to become a collector’s item. The retail price on Record Store Day was $69.95, and if you weren’t able to snag one then, I’ve seen them starting to appear on eBay. At time of writing it looks like they have been going for around double that original price.
Disclosure: Crosley provided an RSD3 for evaluation but had no input into this post.