I designed and had built, a wall of bookshelves that run fully floor to ceiling along a section of the wall in our living room.
This will accommodate my VPI machine (on roll out shelf), along with several thousand LP's, part of my audio gear and even a few books.
Depending on the style of your decor and available space, you can choose materials for the construction of the uprights and shelves to match whatever you wish. If designed with Knape and Vogt shelf brackets, you may place shelves anywhere from the floor to the ceiling or leave out a section and insert a free standing steel stand.
I can shoot a digital image of my set up if you think it would help you visualize.
There is a gentleman in PA., that sells hard wood modular storage systems. His website is :
I am not affiliated with him, just a satified customer.
I built shelves to hold about three thousand LPs for under $200. The only issue to worry about is the width of the shelves since LPs are much heavier than books.
If you are handy, homemade shelving is very cost effective and can be done to match any room finish.
I concur with albert's idea, not only does it look good but if put in the right part of the room it will help acoustics. To see this set up in action wander over to the virtual systems here at audiogon and go to the all out assault catagory and view the system "Are you sirius?" one of the pictures shows a very nice looking and functional music storage system as per Albert's suggestion. Then again it depends what you call "a whole lotta LP's" one of my audiophile buddies has over 10k records and it takes up more room then any rack would ever accomodate- but a few thousand is no problem.
The Container Store sells a modular shelving system, Skandia, I believe its called. I picked this (somewhat overpriced) solution because the shelves are wooden (a soft wood, pine I think), but the shelf contacts are metal on metal. The shelves are rated to hold considerable weight (they let me jump on one in the store). So I got a 'furniture like' finished look with a seemingly sturdy and safe shelf. Additionally, they are really easy to put together and take apart, and as I move with some frequency, this was a concern. Finally, as long as they continue to produce them, I'll be able to add to the overall sytem to accomodate collection growth.
Oh, the Container Store has an annual shelving sale in which they discount the system by 25%. I waited for this and took a significant bite out of the final price (which was a little under $500 for storage for > 600 LP's, 400 CD's and a full foot high by 30" wide shelf for miscellaneous DVD's and VHS tapes.
If you want good old wooden bookshelves and you aren't sure if the shelf can support the load, you can reinforce the shelves with 1/2 inch square hollow metal bars, available from Home Depot. Just cut to length, drill and countersink 4 or 5 holes, and attach one to the bottom of each shelf. This worked for me on flimsy shelves that are 30 inches wide.
As mentioned, modular furniture can provide a prety cost-effective and reasonable looking solution if your not prepared to go to custom built shelving. IKEA (http://www.ikea.com
) offers some solutions that some have found work well. Look at the Bonde, Billy and Ivar series.
With the Bonde series, the trick is to purchase a combination of the 14x86 and 28x86 bookcases. These have shelves in 13" widths. They come in wood veneer, or white for a lesser price. See:http://www.ikea-usa.com/product_presentation/show.asp?productnumber=00030064&type=IIIhttp://www.ikea-usa.com/product_presentation/show.asp?productnumber=00030063&type=III
With the Ivar series, the trick is to buy separate 13" (approx.) shelves and 6' uprights. You connect them to form two columns of shelves. With each shelf at 13" wide, you don't have any sagging and you get good vertical support for your LPs. The six foot uprights easily allow for 4 shelves; to get 5 shelves you need to start with the first shelf on the floor. (The Ivar series is sold on a completely modular basis - you order it stick-by-stick to match your needs.) See:http://www.ikea-usa.com/product_presentation/show.asp?productnumber=00005050&type=III
At one time, Ikea sold a line of modular 13" x 13" shelving that was a perfect inexpensive solution: the Expedit series. It never appeared in their website, but was available in the stores. I don't know if it might still be available.
You guys that use Scandia and Ikea Ivor, what keeps the records from being pushed too far back into the shelf? What is the best depth, 12" or 20"?
With the Ikea Ivar units, there is no backing to keep LPs from being pushed past the back end of the shelf. You have to either live with that issue and be careful in re-shelving, or you can mount a rail across the back side of the uprights about 5-6" above the top of the shelf.
I use some modular shelving (older, so not the Ivar) that has both 10 3/4" deep shelf units and 17" deep shelf units. Both work fine for storage. What I find is that the 17" shelves are nice for reducing the amount of dust that can accumulate on top of the LPs because they are further recessed. (I'm storing several thousand LPs, so rotation takes a while.) Also, there is space to the front of the 17" shelf to rest something or to set an LP face-forward temporarily pending re-shelving. The downside is that the lower shelves can be a bit difficult for viewing the LP spines due to that same recess. This would be exacerbated with 20" deep shelves.
I tend to agree with Albert if you have the room and you want it to look classy, take a wall and build media shelves.I have built all my furniture over the years and have found it may be a little more costly in the long run BUT YOU WILL GET WHAT (YOU) WANT!!! Here is a few portable ideas. Billy Bags # 6650 66w/16d/50h three shelves holds 1200lps $1399.00 The other is boltz its holds 180lps per shelf you can add up 4 shelves thats 720 lps for $669.00 you can also add casters on that one David.
I use IKEA "bonde" bookcases with the glass doors & these look very nice. They are 56" or so and each single bookcase can hold four rows of records. They are about 15" deep, which I find is ideal as it also allows me to use dividers to seperate the records. As they are modular & have been an IKEA staple for a while now, hopefully they will be around in the future for expansion.
Hope this helps
Bookshelves, 12" deep, w/ adjustable shelves. Dividers are non-corrugated posterboard 13" deep, labeled A, B, W-Z, etc.
I think IKEA http://ikea.com has some great choices for storing LP's from the Bonde unit mentioned to IVAR, etc. Check it out.
I got cheap, appropriate sized book shelves from Staples. I only go three tiers high because I'm afraid my floor won't take the weight.
When I was single, I used one of those metal shelving units that are meant for garages - very cheap, holds over 1000 lps. I kept a sheer curtain in front of it to provide a little esthetic improvement and dust reduction.
Muzikat - Sorry to take so long to respond. I don't use anything to keep the records from sliding back. Since I have the shelf against a wall, and I use 12" shelves, there's really no where for the record to go. On the other hand, the CD's would slip back. My solution was to have some 1x2's (I 'splurged' and spent the extra $10 for furniture quality oak that matched the look on the shelf best) cut to appropriate widths at Home Depot. I used poster tack to affix the bars to the shelves so that I could remove them if I ever decide to use the shelving for something besides CD's.
I finally ended up building mine from MDF. I don't like storing albums in a way that I have to read the spine to find an LP. I like to flip thru them and see the cover. I started out with one design but as I built it, it morphed into something else. It was suppose to be simple and cheap, but turned out costing a little shy of $200. It fits most of my 1200 LPs but I still have about a 100 that did not fit. Since I built it in a closet, there is no more room to make it bigger, but I am satisfied since the LPs are no longer strewn all over laying against the walls. It was a *lot* of work, so make sure you are prepared if you decide to do this. Good luck on your search.