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Turntables - help me understand the appeal?

Sal1950

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But that is easily heard on an inexpensive CD player.
I have 4 record players, one of which is IMO the best ever made, and I only use them when a piece of music I want to listen to I only have on LP. For revealing details and low noise a CD has been better than LPs for decades IME, and I designed record players in the old days so they are actually the only part of a hifi I have an intimate and deep knowledge of.
I'm glad you said it Frank, they won't listen to me any more. LOL
New people who have never owned vinyl before that are going out spending huge amounts of money chasing sound quality are heading down a dead end ally.
 

Sal1950

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levimax

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New people who have never owned vinyl before that are going out spending huge amounts of money chasing sound quality are heading down a dead end ally.
I don't think ultimate sound quality is what listening to vinyl is about ..... but in many cases it can offer the "best recorded music listening experience". As far as "dead end alley chasing sound quality" goes digital is the ultimate dead end... it is what it is and it will never change better or worse. I know for me my enjoyment of this crazy hobby would be greatly diminished if I only had digital or only had vinyl play back capabilities. I would not want to discourage "new people" from trying vinyl playback if they are interested. It does not have to be expensive to get started.
 

MattHooper

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Vinyl is too weak for some complex electro and metal music,
My experience couldn't disagree more.

I'm a big fan of electronic music - from simple to complex - and my digital and vinyl library is full of it. At least on my playback system, most electronica LPs come across with essentially "perfect" clarity, by which I mean every instrument part is clean, clear and discernable, no matter how tiny, quiet, or far in the background. In fact, some of the instruments seem to "pop" with a bit more clarity in my newly acquired vinyl versions of stuff that I've owned digitally. I'm so enthralled with how electronic music sounds on vinyl that I'm buying up quite a bit of the vinyl versions of my digital electronica.

As for metal...again...if you are talking about just distortion-guitar based rock...then once again my experience is different. I haven't listened to so much rock/metal music for decades, as I am now that I got a really good turntable. Vinyl to my ear (and I've seen many express the same sentiment) just seems to "love" rock music. I was a huge Rush fan but stopped listening long ago, though I'd occasionally put on some of a Rush CD (ripped/streamed). But the re-mastered Rush on vinyl is just killer! It just seems to have a combination of texture, presence, punch and aliveness that bursts through the speakers, and again...every nuance of every guitar, everything in the mix, beautifully clear. I keep digging out older rock/metal albums from Def Leopard to Max Webster and I am blown away by the sound - so huge, rich, spacious, dense.

I don't mean to just say "you are wrong" because you may of course have a perfectly legitimate criteria that you find vinyl doesn't fulfill with the music you listen to. I'm just trading notes on this.
 

Sal1950

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I don't think ultimate sound quality is what listening to vinyl is about ..... but in many cases it can offer the "best recorded music listening experience". As far as "dead end alley chasing sound quality" goes digital is the ultimate dead end... it is what it is and it will never change better or worse. I know for me my enjoyment of this crazy hobby would be greatly diminished if I only had digital or only had vinyl play back capabilities. I would not want to discourage "new people" from trying vinyl playback if they are interested. It does not have to be expensive to get started.
Vinyl is a financial dead end. It will never approach digital in being able to reproduce the sound of the master recording from which it is cut. That's just the facts.
So then it becomes a matter of cost and your personal finance. If you only want to spend a couple hundred on a TT plus a few records to play with, fine. But remember that every penny spent on it instead of better speakers, or some DSP, or room treatment, or more digital music is just money thrown down the toilet on a toy and not getting the best HiFi you can for the dollar spent. If you can afford to do that, fine, we all have our vices.
But PLEASE don't become a Mickey Fremer spreading the gospel of the glorious superior sound of analog and the LP (or SET amps). He makes a living from doing that, you won't, and will only be misguiding new enters into the hobby.
 
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My experience couldn't disagree more.

I'm a big fan of electronic music - from simple to complex - and my digital and vinyl library is full of it. At least on my playback system, most electronica LPs come across with essentially "perfect" clarity, by which I mean every instrument part is clean, clear and discernable, no matter how tiny, quiet, or far in the background. In fact, some of the instruments seem to "pop" with a bit more clarity in my newly acquired vinyl versions of stuff that I've owned digitally. I'm so enthralled with how electronic music sounds on vinyl that I'm buying up quite a bit of the vinyl versions of my digital electronica.

As for metal...again...if you are talking about just distortion-guitar based rock...then once again my experience is different. I haven't listened to so much rock/metal music for decades, as I am now that I got a really good turntable. Vinyl to my ear (and I've seen many express the same sentiment) just seems to "love" rock music. I was a huge Rush fan but stopped listening long ago, though I'd occasionally put on some of a Rush CD (ripped/streamed). But the re-mastered Rush on vinyl is just killer! It just seems to have a combination of texture, presence, punch and aliveness that bursts through the speakers, and again...every nuance of every guitar, everything in the mix, beautifully clear. I keep digging out older rock/metal albums from Def Leopard to Max Webster and I am blown away by the sound - so huge, rich, spacious, dense.

I don't mean to just say "you are wrong" because you may of course have a perfectly legitimate criteria that you find vinyl doesn't fulfill with the music you listen to. I'm just trading notes on this.
I was meaning industrial/experimental side, Stuff that usually distortion central. By metal i was meaning the need for 2 to 4 discs since. But there always been exceptions since there LP's i got that surprised me by there overall clarity since there ways around vinyl's limitations while lossy's are hard limits. Never had any issue with Ambient and most metal records(if care was done) like Sunn's Dømkirke and Northhaunt's Istid I-II which is just as rich as any CD i had. The really distorted stuff usually are either tape or CD/lossless the new merzbow pulse demon on vinyl i have no idea how that was done??.

So in my view Lossy > Vinyl > CD/Flac for trying all 3 with a good £300 turntable.
 

sergeauckland

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Vinyl is a financial dead end. It will never approach digital in being able to reproduce the sound of the master recording from which it is cut. That's just the facts.
So then it becomes a matter of cost and your personal finance. If you only want to spend a couple hundred on a TT plus a few records to play with, fine. But remember that every penny spent on it instead of better speakers, or some DSP, or room treatment, or more digital music is just money thrown down the toilet on a toy and not getting the best HiFi you can for the dollar spent. If you can afford to do that, fine, we all have our vices.
But PLEASE don't become a Mickey Fremer spreading the gospel of the glorious superior sound of analog and the LP (or SET amps). He makes a living from doing that, you won't, and will only be misguiding new enters into the hobby.
Whilst I don't disagree with the above, I think there's more to playing vinyl (or tape), than just sound quality. Of course digital outperforms analogue in every way possible, but that misses the point. I already have 'speakers that are about as good as I can get into my room. I already have DSP EQ and a digital streamer, so any money spent on LPs or vinyl playback doesn't impinge on the quality of my digital playback. I play LPs (and '78s o_O) both for the musical content (especially 78s, few have been (or are worth) transcribing to digital) and for the inability to get digital versions of my LPs. This is especially true of my growing collection of Quadraphonic LPs, which have never been released digitally except a very few by mistake. And anyway, 5.1 remixes are not the same as a 4.0 quadraphonic mix.

I mostly play music off my Squeezebox, but regularly play LPs because I just want to play that particular LP, not for better sound quality.

S.
 

levimax

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Vinyl is a financial dead end. It will never approach digital in being able to reproduce the sound of the master recording from which it is cut. That's just the facts.
While it is a "fact" that digital has the "potential" to reproduce the sound of the master recording more accurately than vinyl in the real world this does not always happen. Master tapes that were lost or damaged before they could be transferred to digital and the current mastering / remastering choices that are made for digital recordings are two common reasons digital often does not live up to it's potential.

As far as allocating limited resources to a system goes the "software" has a huge impact on the final sound quality and experience and having the hardware to play back a larger universe of software is part of the balance that one has to decide on. To say every penny spent on vinyl playback hardware is "wasted/thrown down the toilet" strikes me as being as dogmatic and Mr. Fremer and his analog dogma.

At the end of the day Hi-Fi equipment is nothing more or less than a "toy" to be played with and enjoyed :)
 
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MattHooper

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As has been pointed out ad nauseum on the thread, and re-iterated by others again: The mantra that one goes to digital for sound quality/vinyl for nostalgia is far too simplistic. Both are capable of superb sound quality and both can sound like crap. It depends on the source quality, production, mastering etc. My playing my digital source is no guarantee at all of sound quality. Same for playing any of my vinyl. On the other hand, I can get awe-inspiring sonic experiences from both formats. Just last night I played a beautiful digital recording and it sounded wonderful. Then I played some not-so-great sounding tracks. Then I put on an LP I just received and was absolutely knocked out by the sound quality. (Whereas earlier in the day I'd played an LP that sounded rolled off, slightly fuzzy and opaque).
 

Sal1950

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While it is a "fact" that digital has the "potential" to reproduce the sound of the master recording more accurately than vinyl in the real world this does not always happen. Master tapes that were lost or damaged before they could be transferred to digital and the current mastering / remastering choices that are made for digital recordings are two common reasons digital often does not live up to it's potential.
OK, so what do you think the "real world" numbers are on those recordings? And of them, how many are ones that you just can't live without that would make it worth spending thousands to tens of thousands of dollars on vinyl gear for?

ay every penny spent on vinyl playback hardware is "wasted/thrown down the toilet" strikes me as being as dogmatic and Mr. Fremer and his analog dogma.
Maybe so, but my intent is only to inform readers of the most economical path to the best possible High Fidelity available. You can't dispute the points I've made.

Then I put on an LP I just received and was absolutely knocked out by the sound quality.
Along with pops, clicks, surface noise, mono'd, level limited, and rolled off bass, soft high end, limited separation, must I go on?
https://music.tutsplus.com/tutorials/mastering-for-vinyl--cms-29480
Extremely fragile and sound quality deteriorates with each use.
 
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Soniclife

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OK, so what do you think the "real world" numbers are on those recordings? And of them, how many are ones that you just can't live without that would make it worth spending thousands to tens of thousands of dollars on vinyl gear for?
If you look at post #3 in this thread I gave a numberless breakdown of how I would rate my experience, putting entirely made up numbers on it now I'd say it's something like the following.

10% are better on vinyl.
20% are a tie.
40% are slightly worse on vinyl.
30% are clearly better digitally.

I'd be interested in how others would score it.
 

MattHooper

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Along with pops, clicks, surface noise, mono'd, level limited, and rolled off bass, soft high end, limited separation, must I go on?
https://music.tutsplus.com/tutorials/mastering-for-vinyl--cms-29480
Extremely fragile and sound quality deteriorates with each use.
The records I am referring to were very clean and quiet, with so few pops/ticks that for all intents-and-purposes they weren't there. Noise, if there, was almost always unheard when music was playing as opposed to between tracks were I heard a pop or tick or two. (How devastating!)

And no...they did not sound rolled off - they sounded if anything more vivid then their digital counterparts. Bass rich and punchy. As spacious or more. Instrumental imaging precise and solid.

Again...the point isn't that the vinyl is more accurate, or that technically speaking kludgy steps are not involved in making vinyl. I'm talking about how it actually comes out sounding. Compared to the digital versions, the vinyl does not sound rolled off - in fact it often sounds more vivid and airy. Bass quality is often terrific, in fact often with a denser more punchy sound. Whatever possible "separation limiting" there may be, in sonic terms it often doesn't sound that way. I played some soundtrack music on LP and the sense of my speakers "disappearing" and being replaced by a big, wide spacious sound studio with precise instrumental images was just amazing. I've listened to digital for decades and in terms of such effects, this was as good as I've ever experienced.

As we've gone through over and over...one can talk about what is technically the case, but how it ends up translating in audible terms can be a different thing altogether.
 

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Music can sound fantastic on vinyl, it can sound terrible too and you really need to know how to maintain your TT to stand a chance of keeping the quality up.

A mate just had his linn sondek serviced and setup properly, also they gave him a switch mode ps , uses to sound distorted to me and now it sounds kinda like a CD.

If you can be arsed with the extra work having a vinyl rig is great and you get to goto all those cool record shops , I even found a pub in bath that has a record fair every Sunday... That's about the best thing vinyl brings , record fairs in great pubs .
 

Sal1950

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As we've gone through over and over...one can talk about what is technically the case, but how it ends up translating in audible terms can be a different thing altogether.
Same things many say about tube preamps, SET amps, etc. All those various distortions add up to smooth the rough edges and return glorious sound. :) They never were any good at all doing multich in any case. LOL
 

Sal1950

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I even found a pub in bath that has a record fair every Sunday...
A pub and record shop in a bath house?
Was it a gay pub?
Thomas, I never knew?
 

SIY

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At least they're all over 21 (or maybe 18 in UK).
 

Thomas savage

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