The Ultimate Guide to Starting Your Vinyl Collection

The Ultimate Guide to Starting Your Vinyl Collection


Embarking on the journey of starting a vinyl collection is an exciting endeavor for any music enthusiast. The allure of vinyl records lies not just in their rich sound quality, but also in the tangible connection they offer to the music and artists we love. Whether you're a seasoned audiophile or a newcomer to the world of vinyl, this guide will provide you with essential tips and insights to begin your vinyl collection journey.

1. Understanding the Basics of Vinyl:

Before diving into purchasing, it's important to understand what makes vinyl special. Vinyl records are analog sound storage mediums, known for their warm, rich sound quality. They come in different sizes and speeds, with the most common being the 12-inch LP (Long Play) at 33 1/3 RPM and the 7-inch single at 45 RPM.

2. Setting Up Your Equipment:

Your vinyl experience is only as good as your setup. A basic vinyl setup includes a turntable, an amplifier, and speakers. For beginners, it’s advisable to start with an entry-level turntable and upgrade your system as your collection grows.

3. Where to Buy Your Vinyl:

One of the joys of vinyl collecting is exploring various record stores and discovering new and old music. For those in Galway, Zhivago Gifts stands out as a cornerstone of the local music scene. Celebrating over 40 years as Galway's premier record store, Zhivago offers a wide range of vinyl records, from classic albums to contemporary releases. Their knowledgeable staff and welcoming atmosphere make it an ideal starting point for budding collectors.

4. Exploring Online Options:

In addition to local record shops, numerous online platforms offer a vast selection of vinyl records. is a notable mention, providing an extensive catalog that caters to diverse musical tastes. Their user-friendly website makes browsing and purchasing records online a seamless experience.

5. Building Your Collection:

Start by exploring different genres and artists to find what resonates with you. Many collectors begin with classic albums or works by their favorite artists. Remember, vinyl collecting is a personal journey, so choose records that hold meaning or value to you.

6. Caring for Your Collection:

Proper care and maintenance of your records are crucial. This includes handling records by the edges, storing them vertically in a cool, dry place, and cleaning them regularly with a soft, anti-static brush or a record cleaning solution.

7. Joining the Vinyl Community:

Vinyl collecting is not just about accumulating records; it's about being part of a community. Engage with other collectors, join vinyl forums, or participate in Record Store Day events. These communities are great for sharing knowledge, discovering new music, and even trading records. There's a good community on Facebook if you're on there thatt post bargains, advice etc for Ireland. LINK HERE


Starting a vinyl collection is a rewarding journey that connects you deeply with music. Whether you’re flipping through records at Zhivago Gifts in Galway, browsing the extensive collection on, or setting up your first turntable at home, each step brings its own joy and excitement. Embrace the experience, and let your vinyl collection be a reflection of your musical journey and taste.

Back to blog