Pro-ject Cork it Turntable Mat
Turntable mats have been always a big discussion how they influence the sound. The interaction between the record and the surface can be tracked very easily by the super sensitivity of a good pick up cartridge.
Common felt mats give a smooth contact between record and platter but has the disadvantage with static. That means that felt mats often collect a lot of dust which can be then transferred to the record. Also the damping ability is very limited which can be a problem with metal platters. Thick rubber mats over-damp the record and have an isolation effect which leaves the static on the record and hearable noise clicks are the result.
Leather and Cork are 2 different but very interesting options to upgrade the sound quality. Resonances are damped more effectively than felt, they keep dust away and they don’t create static. What is better depends on taste and the actual platter design. Turntable mat is a very cost-effective way to improve the sound. You can hear a difference!