Have you heard? Vinyl records made a big comeback—and now you can give one a spin at BPL!
Stop by Central Library for some sweet jams. BPL's vinyl collection is temporarily located in the Languages & Literature division on the first floor, with a variety of records available for browsing and borrowing. Teen and adult cardholders can check out up to three records at a time for a period of three weeks. Records cannot be placed on hold in advance; you must visit Central Library in person to borrow and return records. Read the FAQ section below for more details and contact us if you have questions.
Records Available at Central Library:
Care and Instructions for Records and Record Players
How to Handle a Record
Handling vinyl correctly will help prevent damage to the record. Here are some steps to safely remove the record from the sleeve and place it on the record player:
- Remove the record from the outer plastic sleeve
- Remove the inner sleeve, which holds the record
- Carefully slide the record out a bit until your index finger can reach the small hole at the center of the record—use your index finger at that center space and your thumb at the side of the record to pull the record out of the sleeve
- Once outside of the sleeve, hold onto the sides of the record to avoid touching the grooved surface
- Gently place the record onto the record player's platter
How to Use a Record Player
To play a record:
- Turn your record player on
- Place the record on the player's platter
- Select the speed of the record (Generally 33 but may also be 45 or 78)
- Press the "Start/Stop" to start the platter turning
- Lift the cue arm and gently lower it onto the first groove in the record, or onto the groove where you want to start playing
To stop playing a record:
- Gently lift the cue arm off the record player and place it back in its home position
- Press the "Start/Stop" button to make the platter stop spinning
- Place your hands on either side of the record to gently remove it from the platter
- Return the record to the record sleeve
Frequently Asked Questions
Anyone with a teen or adult library card.
This is a pilot project and we have nearly 400 records—we hope to grow the collection as we learn more about how folks use it!
No. At this time you can only borrow records by visiting Central Library at 10 Grand Army Plaza. The vinyl collection is located on the first floor in the New & Noteworthy room.
Like a book, records can be borrowed for three weeks.
Unfortunately, no. We ask that you return records at the end of their loan period so other BPL patrons can enjoy them.
You can borrow three records at one time.
The record collection is housed in the New & Noteworthy room at BPL's Central Library. To borrow a record, please take the record to one of our self-check kiosks, use the BPL app, or to a a staff member at the Check-out Desk. To return a record, you must drop them off with a staff member at Central Library's Returns Desk. Please do not drop a record in a returns box, as this could damage the record.
Brooklyn Public Library is fine free, so we just ask that you return your items on time. If you have lost or damaged an item, we will charge you a replacement fee.
No. However, we do have an in-library listening station if you’d like to preview the record before borrowing it.
We are currently not accepting donations. Not because we don’t care, but because so much goes into accepting donations from selection, cataloging, processing, and loaning that we are not currently set up to accept your cherished collection. Our collection space is also small so we must keep our collection to a highly curated mix rather than trying to be an extensive archive of popular music. Here are some alternate places to donate or sell vinyl records:
- ARChive of Contemporary Music
- Donate NYC : a list of various places to donate lots of different things around NYC
- Academy Records
- Brooklyn Record Exchange
- Big Reuse
There are user guides available at the listening station in Central Library's New & Noteworthy room. If you need further assistance, please ask a librarian for help.
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