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Why do records sound so much better than digital?

Doctor Big

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Perhaps I was not clear. I have actually never ridden a Harley. The closest experience was a buddy of mine - that owned a Honda dealership - had me test the Honda American Classic back in the early 1990's. I took it out for about an hour passing by a number on envious bikers at the dealership who by their expressions wondering why first dibs fell to me. Since I always owned bikes with upright to slightly leaned forward posture the American Classic felt quite "foreign". Came back from a 50 mile ride with the impression of terrific straight line performance but could not get used to properly do corners at the speeds I was used to. I know its possible as one of the guys in my riding group rides a Harley and had no problems keeping up. The typical Harley - low seat, limited suspension and lean angles just doesn't get me interested. I almost tested a XR1200 because it was converted over to upright seating but instead bought a used 2005 R1150GSA. The new Pan America is the only Harley currently available that I want to test. Claiming the heads are the only thing water cooled sounds like an odd complaint. Last time I checked BMW was doing the same thing with their water boxer engine. The PA seems to have a list of advanced rider aids typical of KTM. ABS, various traction control features - including lean angle TC, wheelie control, and riding modes are typical perks nowadays. My 2018 Goldwing Tour has ABS, riding modes, and traction control but none of the more advanced TC. I used to have a Honda Pacific Coast with the Shadow 800 V-Twin engine that had push rods. That's right - an engine with self adjusting valves. What a concept, no dealing with valve adjustments. The new PA engine had variable valve timing and self adjusting valves. Like I am going to miss doing that or paying someone to do that. Every 6000 miles on the R1150 GSA had me adjusting valves. At least the flat twin minimized the disassembly. My wing will be due for its 24,000 mile inspection soon and while the flat six engine is easier to get the valve covers off the Honda Unicam system is a mixed bag. Intake valves are bucket and shim that requires cam shaft removal if you have to adjust. The exhaust valves are screw adjust via followers. Hopefully all the intakes will be in spec but 12 possible intakes to be out and 12 exhaust valves to adds up to some time. Also the wings air filter is due for its first replacement and is a 4 hour job. Yes it seems Honda decided long ago the the motorcycle would be built around the air filter resulting in the 4 hour replacment! The BMW air filter took 5 minutes. Don't get me wrong about the wing - despite its size and weight it has sport bike manners when it comes to the twistier roads and it does long distance rides with ease.

Back to Harley - they do appear to be catching up nicely. A lot of folks buy Harleys....

BTW- what magazine do you write for?
Bob,

My own bike is a KTM 950 Supermoto, on which I've toured (Toronto to Las Vegas for one), commuted, and participated in a number of track days. My feeling is that the big GS's like yours are the best bikes in the world. I've ridden various GS' over the years, solo across South Africa, to James Bay, and to the east coast of Canada (longest day 1460km)

As I said, I'm not denigrating HDs. The big touring bikes are accomplished at their tasks, but I have to say I see little point in the sportsters, dynas etc, as they're terribly uncomfortable and have little ground clearance in the turns. Still, they all have charm. But the air-cooled 45degree v-twins are MOST DEFINITELY NOT SOTA and people who claim them as such clearly are deluding themselves.

My point here, is that everyone enjoys their motorcycles for different reasons, and that's the way it should be. If we were all just looking for the most functional, practical bike we'd all be riding BMW GS's right?

But my overarching, high-level point is that @Sal1950 chooses his motorcycle not based on its performance, not on how well it actually functions at its task, but on whether it will "get him laid." Hey - more power to him. But to hear him denigrate vinyl based on - what - technical specifications? is irony at the cosmic level.

I have two separate audio systems. One is digital, the other vinyl only. I enjoy them both, but in different ways. The digital system (which is quite simple but with high-quality components, speakers that retail around $22k USD) gets used for background music. It sounds great, but I rarely just sit and listen to it. The vinyl system, on the other hand, draws me in, makes me WANT to listen to it. TO MY EARS it's far superior in its task, which is to make me want to consciously listen to music.

In no way would I even HINT that my vinyl system is technically superior to the digital system. I have no doubt that its in-room measurements would be atrocious. But that's beside the point. I love it, I love its sound, I love interacting with it. But again, I don't kid myself that it's in any way technically superior.

To hammer this point home, Harleys are like vinyl. Both have their charms and both are successful products DESPITE their technical inferiority.
 

Bob from Florida

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Bob,

My own bike is a KTM 950 Supermoto, on which I've toured (Toronto to Las Vegas for one), commuted, and participated in a number of track days. My feeling is that the big GS's like yours are the best bikes in the world. I've ridden various GS' over the years, solo across South Africa, to James Bay, and to the east coast of Canada (longest day 1460km)

As I said, I'm not denigrating HDs. The big touring bikes are accomplished at their tasks, but I have to say I see little point in the sportsters, dynas etc, as they're terribly uncomfortable and have little ground clearance in the turns. Still, they all have charm. But the air-cooled 45degree v-twins are MOST DEFINITELY NOT SOTA and people who claim them as such clearly are deluding themselves.

My point here, is that everyone enjoys their motorcycles for different reasons, and that's the way it should be. If we were all just looking for the most functional, practical bike we'd all be riding BMW GS's right?

But my overarching, high-level point is that @Sal1950 chooses his motorcycle not based on its performance, not on how well it actually functions at its task, but on whether it will "get him laid." Hey - more power to him. But to hear him denigrate vinyl based on - what - technical specifications? is irony at the cosmic level.

I have two separate audio systems. One is digital, the other vinyl only. I enjoy them both, but in different ways. The digital system (which is quite simple but with high-quality components, speakers that retail around $22k USD) gets used for background music. It sounds great, but I rarely just sit and listen to it. The vinyl system, on the other hand, draws me in, makes me WANT to listen to it. TO MY EARS it's far superior in its task, which is to make me want to consciously listen to music.

In no way would I even HINT that my vinyl system is technically superior to the digital system. I have no doubt that its in-room measurements would be atrocious. But that's beside the point. I love it, I love its sound, I love interacting with it. But again, I don't kid myself that it's in any way technically superior.

To hammer this point home, Harleys are like vinyl. Both have their charms and both are successful products DESPITE their technical inferiority.
I traded the GSA against the 2018 Goldwing Tour DCT. When I road the water boxer 1200 RT I actually stalled it out at a traffic light. Low RPM torque not there like on the 1150 GSA. Also road the water boxer 1200GS - higher revs required vs the 1150 motor. The wing has the torque and even though 200 pounds heavier feels lighter at all speeds. Flat 6 has a low center of gravity and Honda knows how to hide the weight.
 

mhardy6647

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Harley-Davidson's global revenue increased by almost 32 percent in 2021 compared to the previous year. H-D generated around 5.3 billion U.S. dollars in revenue for the full 2021 financial year, some 800 million U.S. dollars of which was generated from financial services. That same year, revenue generated from motorcycle sales increased by more than 39 percent to some 4.54 billion U.S. dollars. The U.S. was the most important regional market for Harley-Davidson in 2021 with almost 126,276 unit sales.
Let's put that into a bit broader perspective. Revenue data from https://www.macrotrends.net/stocks/charts/HOG/harley-davidson/revenue
1659796315746.png


Google sez:

1659796461575.png

I'll refrain from trying to pull this on topic, because I think SINAD wise, many folks would rank HOG rather low. :)
Their e-bikes are coming, though, so there could be hope. I don't think AMF is still around to buy 'em again (are they)? ;)
 

Doctor Big

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Let's put that into a bit broader perspective. Revenue data from https://www.macrotrends.net/stocks/charts/HOG/harley-davidson/revenue
View attachment 222736

Google sez:

View attachment 222738
I'll refrain from trying to pull this on topic, because I think SINAD wise, many folks would rank HOG rather low. :)
Their e-bikes are coming, though, so there could be hope. I don't think AMF is still around to buy 'em again (are they)? ;)
HD sees the writing on the wall. The old farts are getting new hips and likely won't be buying more shiny chrome air-cooled bikes. The new motors (Pan America) are great, and the Livewire is a good first try hampered by its limited range and janky suspension.

One more thought regarding complexity and reliability... Air-cooled HDs have few moving parts, everything is hanging out in the wind, and you only need channel locks to repair them. Compare that to true SOTA bikes that require special tools and hours of disassembly time. Just like a turntable has four moving parts and anyone can replace a cartridge. Ever try to repair a CD transport? Not quite so simple...

The parallels continue!
 

Sal1950

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But my overarching, high-level point is that @Sal1950 chooses his motorcycle not based on its performance, not on how well it actually functions at its task, but on whether it will "get him laid." Hey - more power to him. But to hear him denigrate vinyl based on - what - technical specifications? is irony at the cosmic level.
When was the last time your vinyl rig got you laid by some hottie on the first meeting? :p
 

MattHooper

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When was the last time your vinyl rig got you laid by some hottie on the first meeting? :p

So you are sticking with "gets me laid" as your criteria for going with antiquated, sub-SOTA technology?

And you have a problem with vinyl? :D

*(A lot of guys got laid after listening to records with their date at their place. A classic move).

**(Personally, I suspect I wouldn't want to get laid by the gal who'd be seduced by a Harley...but horses for courses...)
 

Digby

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When was the last time your vinyl rig got you laid by some hottie on the first meeting? :p
If you are in your 70s, not likely, however, what with all this retro 1980s thing going on (Stranger Things), I can imagine a girl in her early to mid 20s going "oh cool, a record player" and actually meaning it. So, it may actually work for a 20 odd year old guy, much more so than a noisy motorbike.

Many youngsters today are more like hippies come puritans (think Woodstock meets the children from Orwell's 1984), than they are Hells Angels.
 

Sal1950

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**(Personally, I suspect I wouldn't want to get laid by the gal who'd be seduced by a Harley...but horses for courses...)
Oh yea, me either, they're just nasty. LOL
You squares crack me up. :p

TitanGirl2.jpg
 

MattHooper

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It would be hard to imagine a picture more ripe for comment. But...

No comment :)

Aside from: Glad you are livin' your best life Sal. (Seriously)
 

Sal1950

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Sal1950

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-Matt-

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...but seriously it seems to be a good analogy for vinyl. People using vinyl must surely realise that they are not getting the pinnacle of performance. But there is still something nice about seeing a spinning disc that adds to the theatre of the experience. (Much as HD riders can enjoy their ride knowing that their bike wouldn't win a moto gp race)!

EDIT: If they do truely think that vinyl is the pinnacle of performance then that is really sad for them
 
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Sal1950

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-Matt-

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Only posting to share this really...
20220807_002659.jpg

(Jack Miller_saurus)

We'll see. MotoGP is big into mind games.
You could be right Quartararo might still win without the extra wings.

(Edit: Yes you were. As far as I can see only Miller-3rd and Bastianini-4th kept the wings on for the race).

But trying to get back on topic, what would be world record SINAD for a turntable setup?
 
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