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Vinyl is not as bad as I expected.

jokan

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#21
Vinyl if done right is really a superior format. It is indeed full bandwidth as long as it was recorded and printed with full bandwidth. New reissues are essentially CD quality or as high resolution as the record was printed with.
My budget conscious Rega is heavily modified to get the absolute best out of the record itself. You have to look at who printed it, when it was mastered etc before making blunt statements that CD bandwidth is no greater than that of a CD. I can assure everyone that this simply isn't the case. When records where the state of the art there were many devices to use as playback. DJ style record players do not count in the debate about hi-fi as they served a much different purpose. With a record player, the plinth, the bearing, the cartridge of course, the internal wiring, the style of counterweight, VTA, Tracking angle, stylus pressure all have to be pretty much perfect along with a perfectly level player and subplatter. To get all of these variables to line up properly takes a lot of time and knowledge. A good record player playing the same song by the same artist and also offered as new at the same time, well there's no comparison. You also need a great phono-stage, and PSU if like my Rega, your table runs an AC motor. My cartridge is more expensive than many other parts of my audio equipment. So is the underhung counterweight. If you remember the 70's there was often a subsonic filter switch so you would be less likely to blow speakers because they played well below 20hz notes in the silent sections in between tracks. You also have to have a record flatter, basically a iron for your records, it takes 7-8 hours including cool-down time to flatten a record. You also need a fluid based cleaner that has either a vacuum and brush system or an infrasonic cleaner with a vacuuming system to clean out all of those grooves. Record storage is also critical to keep them from warping. A good phono stage allows for the correct loading as each cartridge is different, even within the same brand.
Sure if you buy a mass merchant record player today that has a built in phonostage, it won't have the extended range, that's 100% true. And again, if LP was the standard when the same music was released on CD, we are talking about 2x oversampling, and later 4x oversampling. A huge leap was 8x oversampling CD players.
The argument that a record player is inferior is uninformed. A quality deck costs many thousands of dollars by the time you are done assembling all the necessary hardware. Indeed, you can buy a compact car in today's money new, and not be able to buy the ultimate in record player. Tests that are aiming to prove that an LP is no better or inferior to a CD is inherently biased as the test was designed and implemented to prove the supremacy of a CD player. My Statistics teacher on the first day came in and said welcome to SADISTICS. Pointing out that what he is going to teach us is that statistics are inherently flawed without a vast, vast number of blind, double blind, triple blind test subjects.

It's unfortunate that so many have had poor listening sessions with regards to LP playback. It just takes a lot of knowledge and equipment multiplied by time to get a hi-fi record player working right. Even the correct oil is required.

The return of record players is great, but the bulk of the equipment being sold at mass merchants does not come into the realm of hi-fi. You have to go to a speciality store that has no desire to sell you an all in one device before you start comparing the sound quality of a record over CD or any digital file. I've got the record flatter (iron) I don't have a good solution based cleaner. And you can't air dry your records after solution based liquid cleaning. It has to be vacuum cleaned so it's dry again. It's a hug pain which is also what makes it so rewarding when it's done right.

Yes, my record player is worth much more than several top of the range, name brand 55" and greater 4K TV's and I don't mind a bit. Worth every penny.
 

sigbergaudio

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#22
the bass is quite mangled though, and so are transient attacks in general. Kind of hard to imagine someone in the 70s and 80s working hard for a tight bass response.
So, this was the main format for any techno / house / elektronika DJ for the first couple of decades of those music genres, so I can assure you that mangled bass and lacking transient attacks aren't really inherent in the medium as such. :)
 

jokan

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#23
I would also add that a correctly setup record player can be done for much cheaper if you just buy the more expensive player in the first place. And tables don't have to weigh 50+kg's to sound great, they can be light also. It's a design concept difference. Though heavier usually does mean a better sound.
 

jokan

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#24
So, this was the main format for any techno / house / elektronika DJ for the first couple of decades of those music genres, so I can assure you that mangled bass and lacking transient attacks aren't really inherent in the medium as such. :)
Very correct sir! mangled bass is the result of poor equipment setup knowledge and inferior equipment. Also DJ cartridges are a different beast to a Hi-Fi Cartridge. Comparing apples to oranges. Records done well printed well typically come out of the U.K. and Germany today. And Mo-Fi.
 

levimax

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#25
Vinyl if done right is really a superior format. It is indeed full bandwidth as long as it was recorded and printed with full bandwidth. New reissues are essentially CD quality or as high resolution as the record was printed with.
My budget conscious Rega is heavily modified to get the absolute best out of the record itself. You have to look at who printed it, when it was mastered etc before making blunt statements that CD bandwidth is no greater than that of a CD. I can assure everyone that this simply isn't the case. When records where the state of the art there were many devices to use as playback. DJ style record players do not count in the debate about hi-fi as they served a much different purpose. With a record player, the plinth, the bearing, the cartridge of course, the internal wiring, the style of counterweight, VTA, Tracking angle, stylus pressure all have to be pretty much perfect along with a perfectly level player and subplatter. To get all of these variables to line up properly takes a lot of time and knowledge. A good record player playing the same song by the same artist and also offered as new at the same time, well there's no comparison. You also need a great phono-stage, and PSU if like my Rega, your table runs an AC motor. My cartridge is more expensive than many other parts of my audio equipment. So is the underhung counterweight. If you remember the 70's there was often a subsonic filter switch so you would be less likely to blow speakers because they played well below 20hz notes in the silent sections in between tracks. You also have to have a record flatter, basically a iron for your records, it takes 7-8 hours including cool-down time to flatten a record. You also need a fluid based cleaner that has either a vacuum and brush system or an infrasonic cleaner with a vacuuming system to clean out all of those grooves. Record storage is also critical to keep them from warping. A good phono stage allows for the correct loading as each cartridge is different, even within the same brand.
Sure if you buy a mass merchant record player today that has a built in phonostage, it won't have the extended range, that's 100% true. And again, if LP was the standard when the same music was released on CD, we are talking about 2x oversampling, and later 4x oversampling. A huge leap was 8x oversampling CD players.
The argument that a record player is inferior is uninformed. A quality deck costs many thousands of dollars by the time you are done assembling all the necessary hardware. Indeed, you can buy a compact car in today's money new, and not be able to buy the ultimate in record player. Tests that are aiming to prove that an LP is no better or inferior to a CD is inherently biased as the test was designed and implemented to prove the supremacy of a CD player. My Statistics teacher on the first day came in and said welcome to SADISTICS. Pointing out that what he is going to teach us is that statistics are inherently flawed without a vast, vast number of blind, double blind, triple blind test subjects.

It's unfortunate that so many have had poor listening sessions with regards to LP playback. It just takes a lot of knowledge and equipment multiplied by time to get a hi-fi record player working right. Even the correct oil is required.

The return of record players is great, but the bulk of the equipment being sold at mass merchants does not come into the realm of hi-fi. You have to go to a speciality store that has no desire to sell you an all in one device before you start comparing the sound quality of a record over CD or any digital file. I've got the record flatter (iron) I don't have a good solution based cleaner. And you can't air dry your records after solution based liquid cleaning. It has to be vacuum cleaned so it's dry again. It's a hug pain which is also what makes it so rewarding when it's done right.

Yes, my record player is worth much more than several top of the range, name brand 55" and greater 4K TV's and I don't mind a bit. Worth every penny.
I don't think many would argue that a good quality well set up record player with a good clean well mastered record can sound very good. To say "superior" to a CD though without defining what that means does not make sense. Clearly a CD will measure better in every way except possibly extended FR which does not really matter. If you are claiming "sounds superior" in double blind tests that could be valid but I don't know of any studies.... if you have a link please post it.
 

mhardy6647

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#26
The funny thing is that I'd quickly opine that the LP sounds different (as opposed to better or worse) relative to a CD made from the same source material... but that's a whole can of worms, too, isn't it? :)
 

Chrispy

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#27
Well I've kept my LPs and tt for the last 35 years but not general use, maybe once a month these days. Haven't bought vinyl in about 30 or so years but kept the several hundred LPs I accumulated over time. I'm quite happy using digital recordings, even for dynamic range (depends on what you buy I suppose, not much into the pop music that seems to get the poorer treatment the most). I started converting over quickly from vinyl with my first cds/player and never looked back (and now the additional ability via wifi/streaming is even better). Some enjoy the fussing and the expense to play cheaply made vinyl recordings and all their problems. I just call it nostalgia. :)

A friend of mine who hadn't had vinyl since he was a kid, and had used cassettes/cd's exclusively as an adult, arrived while I was playing a record a coupla years ago. As it went into the runout groove my friend was very surprised it wasn't a cd we'd been listening to; he simply didn't expect it to sound so good based on his own experiences. Maybe he didn't ever have a very good vinyl setup, as many households didn't, but it didn't exactly tempt him to revisit it either. Still, while I might be able to ignore surface noise, it always says "hi, remember me?" at some point, usually when I don't want it.
 
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jokan

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#28
Well I've kept my LPs and tt for the last 35 years but not general use, maybe once a month these days. Haven't bought vinyl in at 30 or so years but kept the several hundred LPs I accumulated over time. I'm quite happy using digital recordings, even for dynamic range (depends on what you buy I suppose, not much into the pop music that seems to get the poorer treatment the most). I started converting over quickly from vinyl with my first cds/player and never looked back (and now the additional ability vis wifi/streaming is even better). Some enjoy the fussing and the expense to play cheaply made vinyl recordings and all their problems. I just call it nostalgia. :)

A friend of mine who hadn't had vinyl since he was a kid, and had used cassettes/cd's exclusively as an adult, arrived while I was playing a record a coupla years ago. As it went into the runout groove my friend was very surprised it wasn't a cd we'd been listening to; he simply didn't expect it to sound so good based on his own experiences. Maybe he didn't ever have a very good vinyl setup, as many households didn't, but it didn't exactly tempt him to revisit it either. Still, while I might be able to ignore surface noise, it always says "hi, remember me?" at some point, usually when I don't want it.
That is absolutely hilarious and yet very true. Human ears are remarkably poor at hearing well. And when Vinyl or LP was THE standard, they had much more dynamic range as the loudness wars hadn't started.

I have an original NWA LP, yes, hardcore gangsta rap, and it sounds much better than the CD. Also the dynamics were greater as it wasn't as "LOUD" as the CD. Every time a CD gets reissued, it is touched by an engineer and they add a little more compression, or gating. There's a thread on the loudness wars somewhere. And it's true. A huge part of this problem is a result of those portable bluetooth speakers that have active EQ, and run huge amounts of compression so the quiet passages are louder. Essentially everything plays at a significantly raised volume than before. I have a vast collection of first edition prints of a lot of 70's music and they are quieter, but more dynamic when the drums are hit hard, you can hear how hard the drums are being hit.
 

SIY

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#29
That is absolutely hilarious and yet very true. Human ears are remarkably poor at hearing well. And when Vinyl or LP was THE standard, they had much more dynamic range as the loudness wars hadn't started.

I have an original NWA LP, yes, hardcore gangsta rap, and it sounds much better than the CD. Also the dynamics were greater as it wasn't as "LOUD" as the CD. Every time a CD gets reissued, it is touched by an engineer and they add a little more compression, or gating. There's a thread on the loudness wars somewhere. And it's true. A huge part of this problem is a result of those portable bluetooth speakers that have active EQ, and run huge amounts of compression so the quiet passages are louder. Essentially everything plays at a significantly raised volume than before. I have a vast collection of first edition prints of a lot of 70's music and they are quieter, but more dynamic when the drums are hit hard, you can hear how hard the drums are being hit.
Yeah, they always avoided compression in vinyl. /trying to keep a straight face
 

tuga

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#30
That is absolutely hilarious and yet very true. Human ears are remarkably poor at hearing well. And when Vinyl or LP was THE standard, they had much more dynamic range as the loudness wars hadn't started.

I have an original NWA LP, yes, hardcore gangsta rap, and it sounds much better than the CD. Also the dynamics were greater as it wasn't as "LOUD" as the CD. Every time a CD gets reissued, it is touched by an engineer and they add a little more compression, or gating. There's a thread on the loudness wars somewhere. And it's true. A huge part of this problem is a result of those portable bluetooth speakers that have active EQ, and run huge amounts of compression so the quiet passages are louder. Essentially everything plays at a significantly raised volume than before. I have a vast collection of first edition prints of a lot of 70's music and they are quieter, but more dynamic when the drums are hit hard, you can hear how hard the drums are being hit.
 

jokan

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#31
Yeah, they always avoided compression in vinyl. /trying to keep a straight face
I was specifically referring to compression as it applies to the so-called loudness wars. I should have been more clear, my mistake.
Perhaps I should have referred to compression as excessive compression. Just look at most top 40 music today, fairly quiet intro followed by a long rectangular shape with a few dips and peaks but mostly rectangular. Of course there are exceptions to this "rule" some people actually care about crescendos. Portable $100 or less bluetooth speakers are convenient but they don't sound right. They physically can't so they use active EQ amongst other techniques to artificially boost everything. Until the masses wake up and realise what they've been missing it will be here to stay.
 

jokan

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#32
I've been in mastering booths, I'm not a professional by any means but I do know when it was done right. 70's and early 80's classical music was done exceptionally well by a few record companies such as Deutsche Grammophon, Arciv. That era of artistry simply isn't commonplace any longer. Double tracking on tape etc, all done by hand. Physically cutting and splicing reel-reel tapes to create a track. A lost artform. I'm sure a few do it, but a very few people.
 

Soniclife

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#33
the bass is quite mangled though, and so are transient attacks in general. Kind of hard to imagine someone in the 70s and 80s working hard for a tight bass response.
You seem to be judging an entire medium on listening to single turntable. About 50% of my records are tricky to tell apart from the CD version, there is much more similar about the sound than different, it's remarkable how well sorted vinyl playback gets away with a litany of errors. People had great hi-fi before CD, but it's a hell of a lot easier to have great hi-fi now.
 

mhardy6647

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#34
Yeah, they always avoided compression in vinyl. /trying to keep a straight face
before, during, or after the RIAA curve? ;)

1620247056540.png


EDIT added in seriousness albeit FWIW: I do think that compression is one of those things that, even used with consummate skill (which many recording engineers did, and still do, have) that makes recorded music sound different from (or different to or different than, depending on one's geographic location) actual live music.
 

q3cpma

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#35
Just look at most top 40 music today, fairly quiet intro followed by a long rectangular shape with a few dips and peaks but mostly rectangular. Of course there are exceptions to this "rule" some people actually care about crescendos.
Can't call them "exceptions" when there are so many. Just don't listen to radio music if you don't want to hear radio music.
I70's and early 80's classical music was done exceptionally well by a few record companies such as Deutsche Grammophon, Arciv. That era of artistry simply isn't commonplace any longer.
Complete bull, very well done "classical" music is even better these days. See BIS to get an example of what a company that cares about quality but still embraces modern technology can do.
 

tuga

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#36
I've been in mastering booths, I'm not a professional by any means but I do know when it was done right. 70's and early 80's classical music was done exceptionally well by a few record companies such as Deutsche Grammophon, Arciv. That era of artistry simply isn't commonplace any longer. Double tracking on tape etc, all done by hand. Physically cutting and splicing reel-reel tapes to create a track. A lost artform. I'm sure a few do it, but a very few people.
It sounds like you're suffering from a serious case of nostalgia...
I listen mostly to classical music and I would rate BIS or Channel Classics recordings higher than DGs.
And I find vinyl too flawed for classical.
 

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#37
I was specifically referring to compression as it applies to the so-called loudness wars. I should have been more clear, my mistake.
Perhaps I should have referred to compression as excessive compression. Just look at most top 40 music today, fairly quiet intro followed by a long rectangular shape with a few dips and peaks but mostly rectangular. Of course there are exceptions to this "rule" some people actually care about crescendos. Portable $100 or less bluetooth speakers are convenient but they don't sound right. They physically can't so they use active EQ amongst other techniques to artificially boost everything. Until the masses wake up and realise what they've been missing it will be here to stay.
Pop music has been like that for my entire life, and I’m old. Compression was particularly severe for pop vinyl, not to mention bass summing and filtering. Vinyl is severely compromised for dynamic range, which may not bother you.
 

acbarn

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#38
I don’t doubt that vinyl can be made to sound pretty good with enough care and enough money. In that regard it reminds me of 8x10 view cameras; a lot of work but perhaps a lot of fun for the right person. It would be hard to argue the practical advantages of either vinyl or film over digital though.
 

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#39
I'll agree that despite all it's issues vinyl can produce some enjoyable sound, as can cassette tape. My girlfriend years ago had Leonard Cohen album on CD-R that someone had ripped for her. I always thought that sounded lovely when she played it as low level background music. One evening I put on the headphones and and was flabbergasted to realize it was obviously copied from the analog outputs of a cassette tape player!
 

Tim Link

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#40
I have to commend people of that era on how much effort they did on imaging, I mean for ~25 dB of channel separation at best they did a really good job of localizing audio!
There's so much crosstalk from the sound from each speaker reaching the wrong ear that it swamps whatever the cartridge is doing. Plus, I believe the crosstalk generated by the cartridge motion is out of phase, which is interesting. I'm not sure how much crosstalk is baked into the groove cutting process itself.
 

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