The first order of business when putting a record on was always to check to see the needle wasn't dusty.
We always used diamond needles, which was a good thing. Our stereo survived two teenage girls and I think we changed the turntable needle once.
I still prefer the sound of vinyl. It has a warmth that digital music just can't replicate, and there's something comforting, somehow, in the little crackles and hisses in the background.