Last updated: August 10, 2021

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Karaoke machines liven up every girls' night out, entertain you and your whole family and are a real eye-catcher with fun factor at every party. With a good karaoke machine, your children will become real superstars and your grandparents can show off their powerful voices.

With our big karaoke machine test 2021 we want to help you find the most suitable karaoke machine for you. Whether your karaoke machine is for children, adults or professionals depends, of course, on your plans and preferences. To make your purchase decision as easy as possible, we have compared the different types and listed the respective advantages and disadvantages.




Summary

  • Karaoke is a form of entertainment in which people sing along live to well-known pieces of music via a microphone. The matching music plays in the background in the instrumental version.
  • There are various karaoke machines available for purchase. A distinction is made between karaoke machines for children, karaoke machines for adults and professional machines.
  • The selection of karaoke machines ranges from simple karaoke microphones to complete karaoke systems. Depending on the model, a connection to external devices is necessary.

The Best Karaoke Machine: Our Picks

Guide: Questions you should ask yourself before buying a karaoke system

What is a karaoke machine?

The word karaoke is made up of the two Japanese words kara and oke. Translated, this expression means empty orchestra.

Karaoke is originally a trend from Japan

Karaoke is a form of entertainment that originated in Japan and involves singing along to well-known pieces of music live via a microphone. The instrumental version of the song is played in the background, i.e. without vocals.

Music and singing are played back via a loudspeaker. A display, which is either integrated in the karaoke system or additionally connected, shows the appropriate lyrics.

There are karaoke machines that are specially designed for children or adults. In addition to karaoke systems for hobby use, there are also much more professional models, which are mainly used at large events.

Karaoke Maschine-1

Whether on weekends with the whole family or on a girls' night out with the best girlfriends, karaoke is always a good choice. Fun is inevitable.
(Image source: unsplash.com / Anna Earl)

How does a karaoke machine work?

Before you can start having fun singing, you first have to choose the right song. The choice of songs depends on the particular machine. For example, there are older models that play the different songs via a CD. Newer karaoke machines can sometimes be connected to the smartphone or computer. This makes a larger selection of songs possible for less money.

Once a song has been selected, it is played in the instrumental version. At the same time, the lyrics are displayed on a screen. Usually, the text passage to be sung is also marked. This makes it easier for the singers to sing along, as they always know where they are in the lyrics.

Both the music and the singing are played through loudspeakers. Some karaoke machines have additional functions. Especially the professional machines allow additional features such as the echo or reverb effect.

What does a karaoke machine cost?

The price range of karaoke machines is very wide. It ranges from about 10 euros to 450 euros. The quality of the machine as well as the additional functions play a decisive role. Karaoke machines that only consist of a karaoke microphone and have to be connected to other devices are usually much cheaper than complete systems that do not require any other devices.

Type price range
Karaoke machine for children approx. 10-130 €
Karaoke machine for adults approx. 15-150 €
Professional karaoke machine approx. 70-450 €

In the area of karaoke machines for children, the product selection is very high, especially in the lower price segment. Professional karaoke machines, on the other hand, tend to be found at the upper end of the price range.

What are the alternatives to a karaoke machine?

If you don't want to buy a karaoke machine, there are various options that also promise great karaoke fun.

  1. Karaoke on the PC: A possible alternative to karaoke machines is karaoke on the PC. It is possible to install certain karaoke programmes on the computer or notebook, some of which are free of charge. It is important that the PC has a sound card and a loudspeaker. For much better sound quality, an additional microphone would be an advantage.
  2. Karaoke on the smartphone: There are now also various apps for the smartphone that guarantee karaoke fun. Since every smartphone has an integrated microphone, you can start singing right after installing the karaoke app.
  3. Karaoke on the game console: If a game console such as a Sony Playstation is already available, the karaoke party can already start. Since the appropriate software is already pre-installed, all you have to do is download a few of your favourite songs from the Playstore.

Decision: What types of karaoke machines are there and which is the right one for you?

If you want to buy a karaoke machine, you can choose between three alternatives. Depending on what you want to do, one option is probably best for you:

  • Karaoke machine for children
  • Karaoke machine for adults
  • Professional karaoke machine

The different options each have advantages and disadvantages. Depending on the context in which you want to use the karaoke machine, a different type will be suitable for you. The following section will help you determine which karaoke machine is best for you.

Karaoke Maschine-2

There are different types of karaoke machines. Whether they are for children or adults, they always have one thing in common: the fun of singing is in the foreground.
(Image source: pixabay.com / PublicDomainPictures)

What distinguishes a karaoke machine for children and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

If you are looking for a karaoke machine for children, you should be aware of the respective advantages and disadvantages of a karaoke machine for children.

An absolute advantage over adult karaoke machines is that there is usually no need for additional equipment. Since most karaoke machines for children do not require any additional equipment, the children can start singing directly. They don't need to worry about how to connect their machine to the TV or any other device.

In addition, the children's karaoke machine is very easy to operate. Unlike the more professional karaoke machines, the children's version has very few setting options. This means that the children can concentrate entirely on singing.

The design of the karaoke machines is also very childlike in this case. The bright colours and, in some cases, additional LED lights make children's eyes light up.

Another positive aspect is that there are very many models that also function as CD players. This gives children the opportunity to listen to radio plays or favourite songs up and down in their children's room.

Advantages
  • Usually no additional devices necessary
  • Very easy to operate
  • Childlike design
  • Can usually also play CDs
Disadvantages
  • Usually rather poor sound quality
  • Often made of cheap material (can break quickly)

If you are looking for children's karaoke machines, however, you will come across some models that have a rather poor sound quality. Especially in the lower price segment, there are many products whose sound quality is anything but good.

The material from which many children's karaoke systems are made also often leaves a lot to be desired. Models made of cheap plastic can break relatively quickly.

What distinguishes a karaoke machine for adults and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

If you prefer a karaoke machine for adults, you will usually benefit from a much better sound quality than with karaoke machines for children. This increases the karaoke fun by a lot.

The material used is also usually of a higher quality than the children's version. This means that the equipment breaks down less quickly and you can use it longer.

Most karaoke machines are easy to transport due to their relatively low weight. Unlike the more professional machines, which are usually much larger and heavier, you can easily take these karaoke machines to your best friend's next house party.

Advantages
  • Usually better sound quality than children's karaoke machines
  • Usually made of better material
  • Relatively easy to transport
Disadvantages
  • Only suitable for smaller parties
  • Not so many additional effects

Unlike the professional karaoke machine, however, this version is only suitable for smaller parties. So if you plan to use it exclusively in your own four walls or in the home of your friends, it is perfectly adequate.

You should also be aware that with the simple karaoke machine you have considerably fewer additional effects than with the professional version.

What distinguishes a professional karaoke machine and what are its advantages and disadvantages?

Professional karaoke machines are usually used for larger events. At events such as a wedding with several hundred people, a professional karaoke machine can ensure a good mood.

The advantage of the professional version compared to other karaoke machines is clearly the very good sound quality. This means that large rooms can be filled with sound without being disturbed by annoying noise.

Professional karaoke machines usually also have many other effects. For example, an artificial echo can be created or the song can be enhanced by a reverb effect.

Fine-tuning is also often possible with professional equipment. For example, the volume of the microphone can be perfectly adjusted to the music volume.

Advantages
  • Very good sound quality
  • Many additional effects
  • Fine-tuning possible
Disadvantages
  • Often very expensive
  • More difficult to operate
  • Usually much heavier (difficult to transport)

In contrast to the other two options, professional karaoke machines are often very expensive. Here, it is important to consider whether the purchase of a professional system is worthwhile at all.

Operating such a system is also much more difficult and you often have to learn the ropes first.

The weight of professional equipment is often much higher. This makes transporting them much more difficult and they cannot easily be taken to friends' houses.

Buying criteria: These are the factors you can use to compare and evaluate karaoke systems

In the following, we will show you which aspects you can use to decide between the many possible karaoke machines.

The criteria you can use to compare the karaoke machines with each other include:

In the following paragraphs you will find out what is important in each aspect.

Connections and playback formats

One of the most important criteria you should consider when buying a karaoke machine is the possible connections of the system. Depending on which devices you want to connect your karaoke machine to, the required connection should be available.

Karaoke Maschine-3

When buying a karaoke machine, always pay attention to the connections it has.
(Image source: pixabay.com / Martinelle)

As a rule, most karaoke machines have an AUX connection and a USB connection. Sometimes SD inputs are also available. Some machines can also connect via Bluetooth. This is an easy option to connect to your smartphone or a modern TV.

Before buying, make sure that the karaoke machine has all the connections you need for your project.

Older machines usually play the different songs via a karaoke CD or DVD. If you get bored with the songs on a CD, you will need to buy a new disc to increase the selection of songs.

If you do buy another karaoke CD, make sure that the format is CD+G. This is the only way to display the lyrics.

With modern devices, on the other hand, it is often possible to simply download individual songs and thus make the song selection more varied.

Size

When buying a karaoke machine, you should check the dimensions of the unit.

Many karaoke machines, especially the professional ones, can be very large. You should make sure that you have enough space in your living room. If you are buying the equipment for larger parties, you should have a large enough storage space.

With karaoke machines for children, you usually don't have a problem with space. Most children's systems are very compact and small.

Karaoke microphones can be a suitable option if space is limited

The same applies to karaoke microphones. If you have very little space in your home, karaoke microphones are a good option for you. They can be easily connected to the TV via Bluetooth and you don't need any extra space for additional devices.

Additional functions

Many karaoke machines have additional features that can increase both the fun factor and the quality of singing.

Recording function

A recording function that saves your singing can be very useful. Most karaoke machines have such a function, but you should still check when buying one. That way you can listen to it later to see if you hit all the notes.

Echo function

Another function that professional karaoke machines have is the echo function. This allows you to create an artificial echo. If you use this function skilfully, great effects can be created.

Volume control

With some karaoke machines, it is also possible to regulate the volume of the music and vocals and match them perfectly. This can lead to a much better result.

LED lighting

If you want to create a real disco fever in your living room, it is advisable to buy machines with additional LED lighting. The built-in coloured lights will lighten up any mood and create a real party atmosphere.

Microphone

When buying a karaoke machine, you should always check which accessories are included in the scope of delivery.

Some models, for example, are delivered without a microphone. Here you should consider that additional purchase costs could be added. Since many karaoke enthusiasts also want to measure their singing skills against each other, it is also advisable to have at least one additional microphone.

So always check whether and how many microphones are included.

Karaoke Maschine-4

The quality of the microphone is crucial for the sound experience.
(Image source: unsplash.com / Zack Xavier)

Especially in the professional field, it is important that the quality of the microphone is good. If it is poor, the result will sound accordingly. A good microphone is the be-all and end-all if you want to conjure up high-quality vocal experiences.

When buying a microphone, look at the manufacturer's quality specifications and read customer reviews.

You should also consider whether a wireless microphone or a wired microphone is more to your liking. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages. The quality is usually slightly better with the cable microphones, as there is no radio frequency to interfere with. However, cable microphones are often a little more expensive than radio microphones. One advantage of wireless microphones is that you can move and dance much more freely when there is no interfering cable.

Decide between a cable microphone or a radio microphone.

Facts worth knowing about karaoke machines

How do I connect the karaoke system to the TV?

Whether and how you can connect your karaoke system to the TV depends on the model. Read the instruction manual carefully and go through the instructions step-by-step. Then nothing can really go wrong.

Can I use my karaoke machine outdoors?

There are some karaoke machines that are best suited for outdoor parties. Wind and weather cannot harm these machines. Other models, however, should never be used outdoors as they are very sensitive.

Whether your karaoke machine is suitable for outdoor use can often be found in the specifications of the respective supplier. If you don't find any information about this, contact the provider and ask whether the system is weatherproof.

Image source: Choradet/ 123rf.com

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