Pioneer PL-55X

Pioneer PL-55X

This Pioneer PL-55X turntable was one of Pioneer’s offerings in the mid 70’s. It’s a very nice looking table though, as wood plinths go, I like the Dual CS-5000 the best. It is a direct drive, servo controlled, semi-automatic table which incorporates auto return.  There are a number of different PL-55 versions including the PL-55, PL-55X, PL-55D, PL-55DX, PL-55DXF, and PL-55XF and others. All are very similar with only minor differences. I believe the later, early 80’s “F” designated tables are belt driven. I also believe that the “D” designation means the table was wired for use with the CD-4 Quadraphonic decoder. The “X” designation was the PL-55 table with slightly better specs such as a strobe light and a static balanced tone arm.

PL-55:       Offered from 1973-1975 and retailed for about $260.00. Direct Drive, Semi-auto.  Cartridge: PC-50.

PL-55D:     Offered from 1973-1975 and retailed for about $270.00. Same as PL-55 except for cartridge.  Cartridge: PC-Q1

PL-55DX:  Same as Pl-55D except it has low capacitance wiring for quadraphonic play. Cartridge: PC-Q1.

PL-55X:     1974-1978. Similar to the PL-A58. Cartridge: PC-50.

Pioneer PL-55X Tonearm

Here are the specs for the PL-55X:

  • Type: direct drive
  • Motor: brushless DC servo motor
  • Speeds: 33 and 45rpm
  • Wow and flutter: 0.05% wrms
  • Rumble: 58dB
  • Platter: 310mm aluminium alloy
  • Tonearm: static balance type, s-shaped, pipe arm
  • Effective length: 221mm
  • Cartridge weight: 4 to 14g
  • Overhang: 15.5mm
  • Dimensions: 480 x 410 x 185mm
  • Weight: 11.3kg

The PL-55X utilizes a low mass S shaped tonearm as well as an anti-skating mechanism, built in strobe, damped tonearm cueing and variable pitch controls.

Pioneer PL-55X Cartridge

The Pioneer PL-55 line is pretty popular for mid range turntable users. You’ll commonly see the PL-55X and PL-55D up for sale. There have been some complaints about the cueing mechanism and auto return but not anything that can’t be overcome. Some prefer quartz lock tables as opposed to the PL-55X’s servo motor as well. Still, this is a good performing table when maintained properly. The PL-55X will sell from about $75.00 at the low end up to $400.00 for a fully restored unit.]

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11 thoughts on “Pioneer PL-55X

  1. hi I have a pretty clean well mint pl-55dx, my dad was a musician and elctroics freak he had it stored for years everything is original and in perfect order. If interested let me know i have pics and probably could do a short vid of it playing or i will just put it on ebay guess thats best way but takes time.
    thanks chris

  2. hi jon i just now came across your reply i still have the pioneer pl-55dx i never got around to it im putting it on ebay today so if interested still email me on hotmail, mrgiggs


  3. I have a PL55X that I’ve had for 40 years. Great turntable but the on/off switch doesn’t stay ‘on’. Turntable will start when you slide the lever but the lever won’t catch in the on position. Anyone have any ideas on how to fix it. 400 vinyl albums sitting that I can’t play right now.

    1. I would try the guys over at Audiokarma. There are a lot of techs and enthusiasts there that are familiar with almost every model. HERE is the turntable forum. Just register for an account and post the issue there. I’m sure someone will have an answer. Could just be the old grease has hardened and isn’t allowing the mechanism to work properly. In which case it would just need taken apart and given a good cleaning.

  4. Hi I have just picked up a mint PL-55DX. One owner since new. All is working as it should. Good torque in the motor. About to clean and DeoxIt. Needs a new mat as the current has gone very brittle, I may try a Toner or similar (acrylic/ crystal or perspex). I will change the cart. either a Pickering or a Shure V15 for starters.

  5. I have a mint PL-55X available for sale. Still has its original box and a new Shure M75ED Cartridge. Any idea where I could offer for sale? I am UK based.


    1. HI ALL i’m trying to figure out what turntables i can use for parts for my pl-55x if you can help thanks

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