Vinyl vs. CDs

Vinyl vs. CDs

How many people here have hung on to their old vinyl records and still listen to them? And why?
This question probably applies more to the older folk here, and not really to me, since I was born around the time that CDs were invented and vinyl records stopped being produced (i.e. mid 80s), but I was just interested. Actually, my father has some old records that I used to listen to as a kid, but we haven’t had a functioning record player in quite a while, so I don’t really know whether I prefer the sound quality of records or CDs. (And I know, this is a huge debate.) What I always liked about records, though, was that the cover art was bigger and often more creative than on CDs. Don’t judge a book by its cover, and don’t judge a record by its sleeve; but at least if you had bought a record of a good artist, the cover art was a nice bonus. Just my opinion.

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Despite some rock mania, though I cheated and used earplugs, my hearing isn’t half bad. I know the hell of vinyl, but at least it isn’t what I call ‘topped-and-tailed’, meaning compressed, cutting out frequencies over a certain level and under another. I prefer the more open, fuller and honest sound of vinyl, and even tape, despite the hiss and pop and other distortions. The rhythm is more defined with those high overtones, like when you change the direction of the bow or tongue on a flute or whistle. There is this jump into the highs that is ‘topped’ out of the equation with modern digitization. I know this because I’ve also been involved in that process too.

If you have been born to the digital, as is the growing truth, then you won’t know the difference, unless someone shows you and your ears are educated to it. Yes, there are great benefits to having turned sound into math, and as we advance and computers get bigger and faster, and that includes the media, it will hopefully start widening out again and it will be more and more difficult to tell the difference ~ except in the loss of the dreaded hiss, pop and distortions of vinyl and tape. That is happening now, and I suspect in the next decade we’ll have yet another media player and system.

MP3 is worse in reducing the music to numbers and the lowest common denominator…

I also prefer the more honest ‘dirt’ and fault ridden methods of the acoustic past, not being processed as much as things can be now and are with digital ~ the factory process of cleaning everything up and making a recording that can never be reproduced live, by the musician or their instrument of choice…

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Analogue: warm, honest, warts, human, complete
Digital: cold, clinical, sampled, incomplete, machined

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Very interesting - is anyone still producing vinyl or is it just second hand that you can get now? I still have all my old vinyl rock albums which have been replace by CD equivalents but having read your post, ceolachan I may just try to get hold of a deck and have a listen to see if I can tell the difference.

At the risk of going a mile off-topic for a moment it’s a bit like the difference between digital photos and slides. No matter what I do, the digital images just don’t ‘pop’ like slide film. (or maybe I’m just an old f4rt who hankers after the "good ole days"? 🙂)

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Yes I too am an old f4rt who has gone back to his trusty Nikon FM2 with 3200ASA b&w film - hoping to get some good photos of musicians without using a flash. Digital doesn’t feel right - a bit like playing ITM on a synthesiser.

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I’ve heard that small numbers of LPs are still being made for niche markets, probably in the classical field, exactly so that people can still enjoy the truer sound of vinyl.

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And if you want the truest reproduction from your LP, get a valve amplifier.

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Yes, it’s a fact that vinyl should sound better than a CD. However, you will need several thousands of quids worth of top quality turntables and concrete tables valve amps etc to make your records sound better than just a couple of hundred quids worth of CD playing stuff.

The digital camera v film is not an accurate analogy. The amount of information in your digital pic is way way less than your piece of film. A better analogy is, would you rather watch a moive on super 8mm through your grandads projector, or on your 42" plasma screen with full dolby SR?

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"still enjoy the truer sound of vinyl", and other stuff above - gimme a break! The sound of vinyl is crap. Maybe it’s nicer crap, but it’s compressed, noisy, narrowband, cross-modulated crap. "still enjoy the sound of vinyl" would make sense, but "truer"? C’mon!

"at least it isn’t what I call ‘topped-and-tailed’, meaning compressed, cutting out frequencies over a certain level and under another"
Absolutely it is a) compressed b) filtered to a bandwidth well below what the ear can hear. *And* the spectral response is not as flat.

Oh, by the way, yes, I still have vinyl. In the last 3 or 4 years I’ve bought *two* new decks to listen to it on. But in terms of accurate reproduction - it’s still crap.

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I used to work at a radio station with thousands of lps and had hundreds of lps in my own collection—-got rid of them more than 15 years ago. Honestly, I never noticed that cds don’t sound as good. I’ll take a cd any day!

You know what it’s like taking pristine care of a record collection? First you have to spend hundreds of dollars on a turntable. Then a hundred or two more on a needle (which must be replaced frequently because they wear out). Then you begin the endless search for just the right cleaning fluid and device to apply it to the record. You have to learn how to handle your records like hospital instruments—-replace all the inner sleeves with non-static plastic ones, never ever touch them anywhere except the edges and the center, etc. You have to store them in the most climate-protected area of your home, always upright, never leaning. They take up massive amounts of space.

And the sad fact is that they warp anyway. Their grooves fill with dust. The grooves wear down. After the first few spins, they never sound as good as a cd. I’m not one bit nostalgic for them.

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Ah those grooves: filling up and wearing down at the same time - the miracle of analogue!

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And you always get to learn where the big scratches are on the record. What fun it is waiting on the edge of your seat for the next set of five loud clicks! Takes your mind right off the music. Look-of-cynicism emoticon.

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I am in the process of transferring my LPs and tapes to CD. (At the current rate the job will take me until I’m 93.) I thought that doing so would immortalize them - and then I discovered that CDs can easily degrade and lose information over time. 🙁

Storage conditions (heat and light) are apparently crucial to their longevity. So vinyl might be a safer storage medium long-term. But I haven’t found a car with an LP player…

Does anyone know which is the more biodegradable? And has there ever been an attempt to produce an environmentally friendly CD - one that is either biodegradable or that contains nothing toxic, even when burned?

Ha, just found this, among other search results: http://www.sanyo.co.jp/koho/hypertext4-eng/0309news-e/0924-e.html

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There’s a logical problem here. How do you compare the sound of an LP or CD or tape with the original? By definition, the original has vanished as soon as the music has been performed, so the only basis for comparing it with a recording (even a tape master) is human memory.
Another point - unless you’re prepared to spend god-knows-what on amps and speakers there will always be a perceptible coloration of the sound you hear from the speakers, i.e. the spectral response of the sound at your ear will not be flat.

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Steve Jones—-best solution I’ve found so far is to download my cds onto my computer and then store it on an external hard drive. It might not be usable in 100 years, but then I won’t care, will I?

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People like Mark Harmer may wish to come in on this, but the BBC record archives (grooved discs) go back the best part of 100 years, and are still good. Tape isn’t bad either; I have a number of cassette tapes dating back to the late 60s and early 70s (some of which I made myself) that are still eminently playable. Back in those days it was possible to buy reel-to-reel stereo tapes which were inherently superior to cassettes, especially if played back on something like a Sony 377 tape deck (sadly no longer with us).

Commercially produced CDs are inherently more stable than the domestic ones because they use a system of minute indentations produced by a laser to record the digital information, whereas the domestic recordable CDs (CD-R, CD-RW) use a laser to modify dyes within the CD. This is where the degradation over a period of time starts. So keep them cool and out of the light.

Never, under any circumstances, apply a label to the CD, even one that is retailed for the purpose, because the adhesive will eventually react with the dye in the CD. I found this out the hard way when I labeled some CDs I made about 5 years ago. They are now unplayable and the tracks are completely irretrievable; but other CDs of the same make I made at the same time, and did not label, are still playable. If you do make your own CDs bear this in mind and always buy the best available.

You might also like to do what Kennedy and I do, which is to back up CDs for archival purposes on to an external hard drive. These are rapidly coming down in price and you should be able to get about 800 or so CDs in uncompressed format on a 500GB drive for well under £200.

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I never suggested that vinyl or analogue was perfect, if it were we wouldn’t have bought into the digital revolution, and I wouldn’t be digitizing things and doing lengthy clean up jobs on the audio. Yes, you do have to think past the faults inherent in the media. I’ve had and have decent equipment, so that isn’t an issue. As you get older your ability to hear the topped-and-tailed becomes less and less, and that is even more so and sooner if you frequent noisy places, which might just be your own car with the volume cranked way up.

On an oscilloscope, mechanical or digital ~ vinyl to CD, the previously mentioned ‘top-and-tail’ is obvious. The vinyl / analog ain’t perfect, but the digital wipes all spikes out of existence, and that is before all the other farting around you can do with a good software package and the kit ~ like customizing attack, whether a pick, a finger, the tongue or a bow, right down the the minutist of detail. Hey, it’s fun ~ but after away the factory approacy to processing the music is just a bit too Velvetta (a processed American cheese stuff, like those plastic wrapped uniform slices) for me. I can still appreciate the spike of a bow changing direction. I like that bite and lift. Current CD digital standards tend to be a bit too suburban for me, soft, but I do appeciate its plus points too.

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I still play, and buy LP records for the very simple reason that much of the recorded music we enjoy on this site has never made it onto CD, for one reason or another. Think of the much-requested Paddy Carty/Conor Tully tape [ which didn’t even make it onto vinyl ], or the Donncha O’Brien LP, or the many Comhaltas records such as the Castle Ceili band record which PaddyC was asking about only a couple of weeks ago.

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But, lazyhound, external hard-drives can crash and you could lose the whole lot.

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There are more expensive archival media available… The other option is to have a backup… Listen to me, who recently lost 100’s of hours and loads of hard work because I hadn’t a DVD drive or an extra hard drive to backup to… I’d better stop now or I’ll start crying again… 😎

I agree with Kenny ~ so much that isn’t currently available on CD…

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Some musicians, outside the ITM world, are still doing releases on vinyl…

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Ironically, vinyl is thriving with electronic dance music. DJs need the vinyl to spin.

But most stuff released these days on vinyl is recorded and mastered digitally anyway. How many studios still use analog tape?

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When CD’s were new, I remember reading about some experiments comparing vinyl and CD to see if listeners could identify which was which. They couldn’t, except for some very serious classical audiophiles listening to music with a very wide dynamic range. I don’t know the details of the experimental protocol, so I don’t know how well it was done. Not very comprehensively, I suspect. Probably good enough to make a broad statistical statement about the mass of listeners, but I doubt if they considered a lot of special cases where the differences might be more detectable.

A really good experiment would be very hard to do. The noise floor from vinyl is higher than the digital noise floor, so a very sensitive ear might detect that difference, even subconsciously, and be biased in the comparison.

There’s also the question of how the digital recording was produced. Was it recorded direct to digital, then mixed and mastered digitally? Recorded to tape, then mixed digitally? Vice versa, etc.?

It’s easy to fool ourselves when we’re not truly "blind" in any comparison.

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Yeah, the whole thing about ‘objectivity’ ~ books and books and lectures and lectures about the subject. It’s still Velvetta to me, or ‘Dairylea’ if you’re on this side of the Atlantic bog. I have to be careful there, my wife loves Dairylea…

The most pronounced difference for me is in articulation, punctuation in the music, which the wider dynamic range carries, below and above, overtones, the spikes. For me it means a clearer cut and lift to the music, all the disadvantages aside. But digital has expanded to be able to deal with twice the range it once limited itself to, and more. So being able to distinguish these subtlies will likely disappear in future, as they do with age…

I wouldn’t call it ‘blind’, as you’ve outlined Bob, or even that one is necessarily better than the other, which I won’t suggest either. They have their advantages and I enjoy working with digital audio files, much, much easier than razor and tape or the other hassles of the past with tapes and vinyl. However, it is ‘softer’, a touch less vibrant in my coloured and biased estimation ~ beyond the pops, crackles, stretched tape and other irritating disadvantages of old analog…

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In my previous post I told how some CDs I made of some classical LPs - which I no longer have 🙁 - about 5 years ago were irretrievably ruined because I had stuck labels on them. Fortunately, at the time I made those CDs I also made mp3 backups which I kept on my hard drive (this was in the days when drives were expensive and space was at a premium). So last year I was able to burn new CDs from those mp3 files.

I’ve since looked at those 128kbps mp3s spectrally and see that there is a top cut-off at 15KHz. I can’t hear anything over 10KHz, so it doesn’t matter to me that the 15-20KHz range of the LP has been chopped. Comparatively few people can hear in that range and they would (a) have to be young, and (b) have top of the range playback equipment and a listening room to match.

My practice now when I prepare a WAV file for backup or for playing on an mp3/wma player is to use a minimum setting of 192kbps for either mp3 or wma, because I can (just about) tell the difference between 128kbps and 192kbps recordings. I can’t tell the difference between 192kbps and any higher setting, so I don’t need to go higher.

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You don’t have to hear the high range for it to actually colour the lower range you can hear… Acoustic experimentation has shown this. But the analogue / digital debate a long time argument, and I am aware of the fantasies and biases mixed into it.

As I’ve said, I do value the digital possibilities, but I at least used to be able to detect, or imagine if you like, a difference. I did have someone test that assumption during the early years of digital. Even then a ‘blind test’ is a bit of a joke, as there are other things that reveal an analogue source and early digital equipment was not the best. It was the same source digitized and they played me alternate takes of the analogue and the digital and imagined or not, there was a perceptable difference, or so I thought.

As I am growing ‘ancient’, 😉 , though I suspect not as long in the tooth as houndog, the ability to detect any difference is naturally becoming less likely. My turntables are not here, so at the moment I am trapped with tape and the digital, but very good speakers and equipment just the same. I may set up a test in the near future, between old commercial cassettes and digital equivalents, but that could never be ‘blind’, as the tape has other telltale revelations of itself as a source… It would be curious to test anyway…

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I would really be interested in a solid double-blind comparison, but I doubt if anybody cares enough to go the expense of doing it. There are lots of very subtle differences that could, theoretically, be detectable.

The digital sampling rate of 44.1kHz leaves the possibility of losing some of the shape of waveforms at much lower frequencies and also the possibility of distortion by aliasing frequencies from above 22kHz down to something lower. These are very subtle effects, but I believe that human perceptioin extends in very subtle ways well beyond the traditionally measured limits.

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That would be cool, but as you’ve said, prohibitive.

I wonder if the labs in Cleveland where Arthur Benade was based did any such testing? There are several impressive labs and universities around the world that have dabbled in such aural testing, but recent work I don’t know? The California State University in Sacramento is just one that comes to mind who had courses specifically built around musical acoustics, including the media, and the physical and psychological perceptions of music.

I used to read some of the reports from U.S. and U.K. Acoustic Society journals, but ages back, but I’m no physicist. I want to say there was supportive research, but I can’t remember any specifics and it would be unfair to claim there was something that specifically backs my perceptions without being able to be more specific. I don’t have those articles here to search for anything. I’d love to hear if there has been recent work in this area…

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Well I built up a pretty good collection of LPs over the years smw & I would certainly not be for parting with them. Like a lot of things, they remind me of many good old times.

I did make the mistake of selling all my Beatle albums once I got hooked on ITM - I won’t be making that mistake with my trad LPs.

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I also have over 400 cassette tapes, some of LPs but mostly of sessions I was at over the years & the odd concert, including a De Danann concert in Dundee in 1978 which I’m listening to right now.

I think we must remember that the most important quality of ITM is not the sound quality, it’s the life & liveliness the musicians are able to convey in their music & my favourite recordings are not the pristine sounds of modern CDs but the scratchy old sounds I hear on my old tapes of concerts & sessions!

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I have hundreds of LPS, IO managed to give away Christy Moores first LP, Christy in London at the time, before discovering it was worth about £300. And it is terrible.

I digress. For quality of sound, CDs are much better.

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My youngest daughter likes the Beatles Sgt. Pepper album but she had only heard it on cd.My records were in store for years because like an idiot I was taken in by the cd hype.Two years ago I became very dissillusioned with the tinny cold sound of cds and I bought a Lenco turntable with a built-in pre amp.The first album I played was Sgt Peppers.She perked up her ears and asked "What’s that Dad,it sounds so different"
And it did,warm with a lovely bass sound.If you look after your vinyl there will be no scratches and pops.I’ve been combing garage and jumble sales for the last two years and I’ve bought some marvellous stuff,all for 1 euro apeice.What a triumph of marketing cds were!Lots of people dumped their albums and parted with their cash to buy what they already had.I kept mine and I’m very glad I did.

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Re Christy Moore’s godawful first album.I heard him on the radio years ago praying that the record company (he didn’t mention the name,but it’s Fontana) wouldn’t realise that they had the tapes in the vaults and re-release it.

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"The grooves fill with dust" The best way to keep your records clean is to play them regularly and often.

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I’ve kept all my trad albums, and very well cared for.

I had some near virgin rock and roll and related disks I’d left with my folks while I travelled ~ and my little sister, who was a Monkeys fan, stole all my first releases of a slew of 60’s LPs… I cringe remembering that. I suspect monetarily they are probably worth a bundle.

This is the same sister who when she and her friends raided and tasted my stash of European mainland brews, mostly Belgian, thought they were off, hey, many were brown and you couldn’t see through them ~ so she and her crew spit them out and dumped the whole lot down the sink ~ a couple of cases worth. I hate to think what she’s done to the vinyl. Hell, she doesn’t really know what a decent record player or a needle is… 🙁

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"The grooves wear down" I believe those bits are called lands, kennedy. And surely when a needle costs $200 it should be called a stylus, so the manufacturer can justify the price.

smw, you missed the whole era of 8-track? Aren’t you lucky!

OK, I’ll be the first to admit that I keep my vinyl because I’m too *thrifty* to replace them. I can convert them to CD via my M-Audio Microtrack, but it’s a slow process. And I agree that the 12"x12" format of a record sleeve is more pleasing than fishing out a CD booklet.

Although I used to enjoy playing with my Revox reel-to-reel recorder, and acknowledge that tape cassettes were/are truly portable, the vulnerability of the tape transport mechanism is so frustrating that I’m glad to leave it behind.

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"The best way to keep your records clean is to play them regularly and often."

All you need is for one itty bitty nasty dust particle to waft down onto the record as it’s playing, right as the needle is about to go over it, and it gets ground into the groove for life.

And the more I played my records, the more this would happen, and the more the grooves would wear down, and it got to the point where I would only play my very favorites on special occasions, for a treat, to keep them pristine.

I don’t deny that records sound good. And I remember the feeling of opening up a new one, a special one, and holding it up in the air to catch the gleam of light patterns in the grooves, the smell of them, they’re beautiful things! The whole ritual of placing them ever so carefully on the turntable, then sliding them back into their sleeves afterward, my whole collection was alphabetized by category, I had separate sections for Irish and Scottish and Motown and Rock and Jazz, I used to just run my hand over them sometimes. Isn’t that silly?

But it’s time to let go. I live in a 450 sq. ft. Manhattan apartment and I don’t even have cds anymore, it’s all on my computer, hooked up to a fine set of speakers and I’m perfectly happy. If I want the true sound of live music, I go out to see someone play it! There is NO recorded medium that will ever replace the sound of a live musician on an acoustic instrument. I think Lazyhound was saying something like that earlier—-live music can only exist in memory—-I look at my music collection as a reminder of real music and not the music itself.

And now I’m learning to play it myself—-that whole concept just blows my mind, I still can’t believe it sometimes.

Sorry for rambling! It’s nice to be on this website sometimes—-I don’t know too many other people who are as music-obsessed as I am…

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Yeah, live is the best…

But ~ always a ‘but’ ~ I remember discovering a whole slew of pristeen 78’s that had been neglected and forgotten, boxes of disks, all sorts, and quite a bit of Irish material. I say ‘pristeen’, I had to dig for much of it out from under about a foot of bat guano. But it was pristeen once we’d cleaned all the sh*t off of it. When that was done and we finally go it going and found sound ~ it was magic… But, back again, while many may not know anymore, once you’ve had a needle to a 78 it is never the same, and with each play it degrades…but WOW! What magic to find this treasure of forgotten oldies ~ it was a rush of goose bumps, and they are rushing on me again just remembering it… I have saved and put aside a good lot of those old disks and after digitizing and cleaning up my field recordings I will also tend to these, ones that have never had a needle touch them yet. I’m looking forward to that.

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Ptarmigan is the man to attend to here. The music is the thing. You can talk all you like about professional-quality heavy turntables set in concrete and the like, and tape decks that can play with super-accurate speed and steadiness. The bald fact is that you can play any vinyl record on any gear and you will hear pops and scratches. If the disc is actually flat, well, that’s one in a million for a start. Any LP that is not perfectly flat will produce some "wow," and that means all of ‘em. So, vinyl equals wow and pops. Then there’s rumble of course. So, no listening test between vinyl and CD can ever be "blind" for anyone who actually possesses ears. As for tape, all cassettes that I ever bought had hiss. All the Dolby this/that/the other setups I ever tried not only failed to remove the hiss entirely but also compromised the higher frequencies to some extent. And the "acceptable standard" for wow and flutter on cassette players was nowhere near good enough to prevent me from detecting it on most of the tapes I bought or made myself. So let’s hear it for digital, say I. Clinical and cold it may be to some, but at least there’s nothing between you and the music to distract. Mind you, one quick burst of Peoples/Brady on me scratchy old vinyl is still ten times better than any number of bursts of Lunasa on CD… wink emoticon

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Yeah, that’s why we went digital so easily, it wasn’t all just hype ~ there were real gremlins about, the hiss, pop, wow and all the other shight, the fact that the natural state of vinyl is on a roll, curved… For the digirati amongst us, myself included, the possibilities are expanding for that mathematical solution… We’ve gone from 16 bit to 32 to 64 to ~ the paramaters and possibilities are growing…

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I think digital was so good it exposed a lot of bad sounds intrinsic in recording equipment and techniques. We had to learn how to use tools such as EQ and compressors all over again to get a pleasant sound with digital.

The bad thing about digital is that it can make the recording process so easy that an engineer doesn’t have to think about what he or she is doing and how it will affect the sound. And most engineers learn the craft recording rock, which is a whole different ball game. When recording music that is mostly acoustic instruments, you can turn the compression way down.

The results are very audible. A lot of vinyl (even rock) was recorded when it was still an acoustic ballgame.

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I’ve just done a random sampling of my albums which are stacked very carefully and they were all flat.Cleaning the the records by playing them often doesn’t come from me but from Hi Fi Magazine.They tested various methods of cleaning records and then examined the grooves with a microscope and playing them was the most effective method.Cds can give up the ghost too you know.The first cd I ever bought,Richard Thompson’s "Rumour And Sigh" won’t play on anyone’s cd player or computer.I don’t know why.

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CDs brought good quality sound to the masses as (I think) Michael says up there ^, whereas previously it had been the preserve of "anorak" type "hi-fi enthusiasts" who would spend about 20 times on equipment what they spent on actual music.
I agree that some of the early CDs, especially those that were just analogue tapes transferred to digital, were a bit cold-sounding, but those days are long-gone.

I left hundreds of LPs behind in Australia when I first commenced to roam, and at first missed them like an arm or leg. Now I don’t care and I’ll take the music however I find it, old tapes, mp3s, CDs, in the pub, in the house, over the radio, streamed off the internet, in my head …. The Medium is not the Message any more.

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For anyone who is in the unfortunate position of trying to retrieve data from a duff CD (or DVD) try this excellent (and free) utility http://www.kvipu.com/CDCheck/ .

If CDCheck doesn’t recover it it’s unlikely that anything else will, at any rate within any reasonable price range. I’ve been very grateful for it on a few occasions.

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£200 for a needle? You could make your own CD and follow up for that.

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Stylus, BB, stylus.

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there is a noticable difference between vinyl and disks, just as there is with video’s and dvd’s, or video film ( not sure if that’s what its really called) and film. They are only tiny differences but they are noticeable. I don’t have any records but my parents have a huge collection that i grew up with as a child. we didn’t have a tv so it was records or radio for home entertainment. It was great, and i’m sure my dad didn’t spend £200 on needles.
And one thing about tapes and video that is way better then CD’s/dvd’s. A Cd/dvd gets scratched its stuffed and has to be chucked. A tape goes wrong? Gets eaten by the machine. Unwind it, cut and splice, put it back together its as good as new. I know plenty of people who have fixed their tape players/video machines with screwdrivers and intelligence but who can fix a cd/dvd gone wrong????

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What’s style got to do with it?

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Confirming what Dafydd says, whenever I back-up vinyl onto my computer I always play each side through twice and do the back-up recording on the second play-through. There’s invariably gunge on the stylus after the first play, and this shows how dirty the groove gets even when the LP is looked after.
If I’m going to make a CD from the recording, which I do most of the time, I take the opportunity to run it through Cool Edit first to remove the most obvious clicks, but I never mess around with filters or reverberation etc to alter the sound in any way.
If I back-up a tape onto my computer I always turn off the Dolby on the tape deck. If necessary, which is rare, I can use Cool Edit to filter out some of the hiss, but this has to be done very carefully to avoid cutting high frequencies too much.

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I have Audio Cleaning Lab and it has click and hiss-removing tools, but you really have to apply these with a light touch, if at all. I’d rather have a few dull clicks than a whole muffled recording. Sometimes you can pinpoint the worst clicks on your LP and find some sticky muck there (Gawd knows how it gets there - probably put there by the same horrible little goblin who breaks into our house in approximately July and b*ggers up all our Christmas lights). With a teensy drop of isopropyl alcohol and a little soft-bristle brush you can improve things. Trouble with playing the record twice is that you build up static on the surface, which not only clicks at random as it discharges but also attracts more dust. Vinyl is one of those delightful things in life that just doesn’t really work very well. Swing-top kitchen bins are another.

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Record Making With Duke Ellington (1937) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hjKlFFp4-IE


Fascinating little film.
I hoard LPs and want to get a wind-up LP player if I can, I have my doubts about electricity working in the future, never mind degrading audio formats. I hope they develop a format like CDs that is far more durable, but have my doubts - planned obsolecence is the rule of the day, year, century, age.

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Thanks for that, Kevin.
But I think a wind generator is your way forward.

Re: Vinyl vs. CDs

I tossed all my vinyl when CDs hit the market. Then when my twin sons turned 14 yrs they picked up a sound system at a thrift store and began collecting records. One day I walked into the den, and the boys were playing a record that I owned a CD of. It rocked my musical world so much so that I began collecting vinyl and shellac, and designed my own, rather expensive, sound system. It is truly incredible how much good vinyl hasn’t even made it into the CD market. Understand there are folks on the Internet who are bringing some of these goodies back into sound by restoring them onto CDR’s and selling them online. For me, though, it is all pleasure that drives me collect, and listen and restore some of these gems.