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Thread: Anyone else enjoy listening to vinyl?

  1. #1
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    Default Anyone else enjoy listening to vinyl?

    No, I'm not a hipster. Too old.

    About 3 years ago I made the jump to vinyl. Picked up a budget priced Pro-Ject Debut III for $400.00, upgraded the platter, cartridge (Ortofon 2M Blue) and a Speedbox. Loved what I heard on my few records and have since acquired a few hundred of my favorites. Hadn't toyed with records since the 1980's on my father's Technics system... so was gonna be a crash course.

    The new Jimmy Page Zeppelin remasters are true sonic bliss, however I have only listened to Zep I of the first 3 albums that have so far been released.

    Digital to me has an edge, a certain brightness and because of modern day butchering (Loudness Wars) of the digital medium I usually opt for the record.

    Anyhoo, I'm heading to Audio Ark today to upgrade my turntable, probably to a Pro-Ject RPM 5.1 or something akin, maybe even the 9 series if the price is right. The Debut has treated me well and has served it's purpose in spades - but time to take the next leap.

    And I haven't even opened Zeppelin II yet , but will be this evening



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    If I had the extra cash, and room to setup a system to play vinyl, I would. It definitely has a sound that digital cannot do, and provides a different listening experience.

    When I was younger, and more of an audiophile, I had scoffed at vinyl, until I heard one of my friend's dad's high end system, and I quickly changed my tune (pun intended) about vinyl. Its likely that the majority of stuff I listen to isn't available on vinyl, or won't really compliment the sound that vinyl provides.

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    Good lord.. I certainly hope that listening to vinyl doesn't make you a hipster... then again I've been spinning records long before it was nouveau cool

    That's a pretty neat little rig... but I would not give up my Technics linear tracking table for anything..

    I've set up the basement with the turntable hooked up to a top end vintage AKAI integrated amplifer, with a set of Cerwin Vega D8's and a set of Bose 201's on the rear channel. It's a pretty sweet little rig that sounds awesome. Much better than the crappy gear that passes for stereo equipment these days

    Analog FTW!
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    Good stuff guys! Nice to know I'm not the only one here that enjoys the warmth of vinyl. It's also easy to get caught up in the hardware aspect but in the end it's all about the music. If one keeps that in mind, then the various shortcomings of any playback system is much easier to overlook.

    The turntable I am using (Project Debut III) is my weak spot within the 2 channel stereo, even though I did some decent upgrades to it, in the end it's still a $400.00 TT, hence why a new, better machine today. Gonna throw on a nice Ortofon 2M Bronze cartridge over at Gramophone after picking up the new TT, about a $450.00 value. Apparently smooth as silk and tracks very well. I used the model under it on the Debut (2M Blue) and I am indeed happy with it so the Bronze should be a nice improvement.

    Time to spin some Northern Pikes records!

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    Quote Originally Posted by 240GLT View Post
    Good lord.. I certainly hope that listening to vinyl doesn't make you a hipster... then again I've been spinning records long before it was nouveau cool

    That's a pretty neat little rig... but I would not give up my Technics linear tracking table for anything..

    I've set up the basement with the turntable hooked up to a top end vintage AKAI integrated amplifer, with a set of Cerwin Vega D8's and a set of Bose 201's on the rear channel. It's a pretty sweet little rig that sounds awesome. Much better than the crappy gear that passes for stereo equipment these days

    Analog FTW!
    WOW...

    I have an SL QL1 Technics linear and have had it since new. Also a technics SL 1200 direct drive that I will never give up either. that and my AKAI reel to reel...nothing cooler than this take up reel...



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    I too love vinyl.

    I have a U-Turn Orbit Plus hooked via a Hagerman Bugle2 phono preamp I built from a kit hooked into my Marantz SR5008.

    Nothing terribly fancy, but in the world of analog, simpler is generally better.
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    If you have enough disposable income you can buy a laser turntable, a laser beam follows the grooves on the record, then the information is ultimately translated into sound (I'm trying to not be overly technical).
    http://www.audioturntable.com/about/index.html

    As for me I like the convenience of MP3 files on a USB drive, with high sampling bit rates you do get fairly high quality sound out of it. Having the ability to listen to hours of music driving in the Rockies without having to pay monthly satellite radio fees makes it worth it.
    Last edited by sundance; 25-06-2014 at 09:34 AM.

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    Oh, trust me, hooked to the Marantz is also a HTPC with 14TB of storage including a few thousand albums of digitally encoded stuff in formats ranging from MP3 to FLAC to Apple Lossless.

    Quite often MP3s are ripped from CDs that have been mastered to be loud, rather than right. I spent a good while ripping my some of my vinyl into MP3s because of just that. I've always got some sort of background noise going on, but if I wanna just sit & listen to some of my favourite stuff, out comes the vinyl. It's like cooking a nice meal for my ears from scratch, versus just hitting the drive-thru. I know a good portion of my enjoyment is purely psychosomatic, but there really is something to be said about a correctly mastered vinyl record's ability to produce sound.

    Plus I've never seen a digital track as tricksy as Lazaretto by Jack White. That album is art without ever seeing a turntable.

    http://www.factmag.com/2014/05/07/ja...vinyl-wonders/
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    Not me. I listen to CDs.

    (mp3s for the car)

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    I've got an old Toshiba turntable handed down from my parents.. along with his old record collection.

    Have it hooked up in my music room.. along with Dad's old Roberts reel to reel system, but I don't know how that beast works.. that's older than me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by noodle View Post
    (...)

    Plus I've never seen a digital track as tricksy as Lazaretto by Jack White. That album is art without ever seeing a turntable.

    http://www.factmag.com/2014/05/07/ja...vinyl-wonders/

    ^ this

    yes, everyone has a collection of mp3, wav, CD's, etc. Digital media is here to stay, and has far better technical abilities....

    ...but, as you say...vinyl is an experience...and the album art...sometimes it is a lost art in itself...
    Onward and upward

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    I love vinyl. There is something about the whole procedure of picking an album, cleaning the record, setting the stylus and just enjoying the cover art and writings that adds so much to the enjoyment of the music.
    I currently have over 700 lp's, most are from the old days and many are in rough shape but I bought a record cleaner from Freecloud and have been able to recover a lot of them.
    It's my addiction, it's so easy to drop a few hundred at a time buying lp's, but it's more than worth it.

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    I agree, ralph60 - Just like going to the Wee Book Inn for books or library for periodicals vs clicking an icon and reading the latest Consumer Reports in PDF on your computer.

    Call me old fashioned but I do like owning a physical copy of something I just paid for and not a series of 0s and 1s on a hard drive in someone's cloud.

  14. #14

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    My dad has a bunch of vinyl from when we were growing up but I believe their record player is now gone. If I had the room for a system I'd probably throw in a record player just to play those records. But with today's need for music instantly and the quality of sound not as much desired record players will probably always be a niche. Why load up a record, search for the song when you can have it in 3 clicks or two finger mashes on a phone.

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    Well, went down to the Ark this morning and they didn't have the model I was initially planning to get but they ordered me a Pro-Ject Xperience Acryl and will fit on a Ortofon 2M Bronze cartridge when it arrives. It's a beautiful table in it's own right and will be an improvement from the budget priced Debut III I currently have. They were actually out of stock on many models - seems Pro-Jects have been selling like hotcakes and a new shipment arrived from Europe to the Canadian distributer recently.

    Here's hoping I have it within the next couple of weeks.


    Last edited by Kitlope; 25-06-2014 at 12:09 PM.

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    I noticed a few weeks ago that they are selling Dual turntables at London Drugs as well.

    Not sure how they stack up to the iconic Dual tables of the 70's but pretty neat nonetheless
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    I've been to London Drugs more than a few times flipping through the records and buying some. I too find it neat that they're selling turntables and vinyl, tells you just how much of a revival it's been these last couple years.

    Jack White's new LP is killer - he did all sorts of wild record tricks. You guys need to hear Serena Ryder and Lorde on vinyl - simply amazing. Granted, I have a thing for female voices and the Magnepan 1.7 speakers I snagged last year compliment women's voices very well.

    Right now I'm listening to Tori Amos - Little Earthquakes on CD and it actually sounds pretty damn good.

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    Jack White loves vinyl so much he started Third Man Records, which specializes in vinyl release. He had a pretty good interview on Charlie Rose about a particular passion project, the Rise and Fall of Paramount Records 1917-1932, Volume 1.

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    We all have our loves in life. For me I've made the transition to digital music fully and completely so I can have all of my music with me or reasonably accessible no matter where I am.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RichardS View Post
    Also a technics SL 1200 direct drive that I will never give up either.
    The SL1200 is quite a respected turntable amongst audiophiles, they command good prices on eBay. With a few mods they can deliver really good sound. A popular one is to put in a Rega tonearm, some rewiring for the phono leads and a moving coil cartridge.
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    Technics SL1200s are also the vinyl-spinning dj crowd's favourites as well. Throwing down on the ones & twos! Direct drive & high torque, plus they're built like tanks.

    I had a pair w/ a numark mixer when I was big into the OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ OONTZ.
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    As one might expect audio playback quality depends a lot on the quality of the source material. A lot of the current mastering and recording practies leaves much to be desired especially with regards to dynamic range and loudness.

    Sonically, analog recording had no real weaknesses I have heard rips from 60s era vinyl that are stunning.

    High resolution digital can sound really good but again a lot depends on the engineering of the recording. And even high resolution music from vendors such as HDTracks has often been suspect. They often take whatever material the record labels supply them with and pass it off as high resolution downloads without vetting the supposed masters they receive for things such as frequency response (sometimes they are brickwalled and lacking in higher frequencies).

    It's nice to see that vinyl has thrived although it will definitely remain a niche market. Today most people want their music to be convenient without a proper appreciation for actual sonic quality. To get the most from vinyl you have to make the effort to properly clean the vinyl and, ideally, also treat the vinyl chemically to reduce the clicks and groove noise. And if you have a decent turntable you have to make sure that the tonearm is properly set up, the cartridge has the proper VTA and the phono input has the proper impedance, etc.

    Then there is the quality of the vinyl and the source of the master. Even audiophile releases of vinyl suffer from things like off center holds and poor quality vinyl that creates noise. You also have to deal with issues like tracking of inner grooves that can create distortion or sibilance (cue linear tracking tonearms). There are some who believe that the best old vinyl are the original issues (i.e. first editions) and in particular promo copies that are the first to come off the master pressing. The way the grooves are cut is also an art since physical space is limited and that affects the amplitude of the grooves (I have a test record on which one of the tracks tests dynamic range and the size of the squiggles are huge). As a result some audiophiles covet 12" EPs which are far less constrained.

    Personally I feel digital and analog go hand in hand. Vinyl is a physical medium and it deteriorates the more you play it. So digitizing vinyl playback is a way of getting around that.

    Yes, good vinyl definitely rocks.
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    Nice summary Norwood. Yep, when vinyl works, it absolutely rocks.

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    Curious, what do connect your record players to? Do you go through an amplifier/received through the photo input to speakers, or something more elaborate?

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    In my case I have a seperates system, using a Rotel 1580 preamp and a 1582 2 CH power amp purchased last fall. Just a simple phono RCA hookup to the preamp although buying a higher quality separate phonostage eventually is enticing. Nothing really fancy or elaborate. What does my stereo justice IMO is the Magnepan 1.7 speakers I picked up last year... these things are the most detailed, amazing speakers I have ever heard. They are not a "Friday Night" speaker, but do wonders for clean sound. I love 'em and for the kind of music I usually listen to they're excellent.

    Here's a pic of my setup. Needless to say, I wish I had more room.


    Last edited by Kitlope; 26-06-2014 at 01:21 AM.

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    Wow.. that's some serious gear.

    I run the phono, reel to reel and Mac through the mixer with RCA's and a few adapters, out to the equalizer and then to the amp. It's a little fussy but as I really enjoy playing with it I don't mind.



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    Cool.. very nice setup Kitlope. I have a set of Telefunken speakers that wouldn't look out of place in 240's basement.

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    What? Vinyl played on Solid State equipment?

    Heathens!

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    Hey, I soldered together my phono stage all on my own from a kit! That's gotta count for something.
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    About vinyl: just say no.

    The clicks, and the hiss, and the insanely careful handling required. All for an illusion in any case.

  31. #31

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    There are some great presses of records that are not available in any other formats and have to be shipped in from Germany, for instance, for a lot of my/my buddy's jazz, electronic, and hip-hop-groove jams as of late. He spins so he gets really rare records of disco, jazz, hip-hop, and electronic mish-mashes, and has a out of this world system. When we put on Sun Ra, for example, and listen to both sides for a good spin, nothing beats a good record, on a good system; however, we are both audiofiles and get a lot of our digs digitally for djing at parties, at work, and in the car for the regular day use. Then again... nothing beats putting on many progrock records that we have too. Depends on the person, purpose, and circumstance. Had to pipe in being of a probably a minute demographic on this forum. New records don't hiss or crack and you don't have to treat them as a newborn.
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    ^^

    Sun Ra... Beatnik stuff!! Love it!

    Sun Ra and the Blues Project .... Pardon the Digital Dander...
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    Quote Originally Posted by AShetsen View Post
    About vinyl: just say no.

    The clicks, and the hiss, and the insanely careful handling required. All for an illusion in any case.

    Clicks? Hiss?

    No such thing when you keep them clean and treat the records with care. I'm guessing you have never heard a decent vinyl setup.

    Telling me I'm hearing/dealing with an illusion is typical thing to say for Joe Six Pack.

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    Joe Six Pack? Really? Come on, all this audiophilia is a bit precious. Dig your thing man, but claims of some elevated, "authentic" experience when discussing sound reproduction is a rabbit hole.

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    Yes, it can be a rabbit hole. Not gonna deny that. However, since my upgrades in the last year and after chasing "great sound" for some 20 years, I can finally say I'm 99.9% happy with what I'm hearing.

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    I have probably 400 vinyl albums, and two turntables. Years ago, when I travelled extensively in the US, I would buy albums and I wrote on the back of the covers the date and city. My musical tastes are quite eclectic. I love classical, early rock, big bands, American Song Book, jazz, R&B and more.
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    Just picked up the latest Zeppelin Jimmy Page remastered reissues today, Zep IV & Houses of the Holy from Blackbyrd. Also snagged the Zep I boxset release as it's my favorite album by them.

    Now that it's been a few months since the new turntable and it's relatively broken in and the Maggies have had over a year to sing now, all I can say is it's pretty awesome listening to some classic Zeppelin on vinyl.

    Now playing - Over The Hills and Far Away

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    Thanks for the link, I read it and meant to reply when it was posted. Not sure I'll be checking it out though, work has slowed down and after today I've pretty much spent my vinyl funds until the new year.

    Although, what's another 50 bones (which usually turns into a couple hundred - and that's the problem ).

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    I love vinyl. I have an old Dual turntable that I got from a thrift store for $3 (which then needed $200 worth of repairs - oops). It's actually a really good player. I'm by no means an audiophile - I just like the more active listening experience that comes with vinyl. I also love browsing goodwill for really weird gems.

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    While people say vinyl is "warmer" I don't hear the difference, I understand about how digitizing can remove certain information from the recording but I just like the convenience of my "mix tape" being a USB drive with my music on it. It is very nice to listen to when driving in the mountains where radio stations are few and far between and are typically FM with a very reduced range. So the songs on USB gives me many hours of listening pleasure.

    Just listened to Zep yesterday, I was trying to educate my step-daughter that arguably Stairway is the best rock song of all time and that things like Bieber and most of the music she likes will be forgotten in 1 year, whereas the classics will be around for many, many years (43 in the case of Stairway).

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    ^ hauling out the records is as much about the experience as the sound.
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    I "get" the fact about cover art, Sgt. Pepper's, Dark Side of the Moon, Sticky Fingers are examples, you have a faint glimmer of it on CDs, obviously none with digital downloads.

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    ^ it's not even about the cover art (although that is cool too). It's about making specific time for music. It's about flipping over to the phono channel on your vintage amplifier, spending the effort to find that specific album in your collection, placing it on your turntable and perhaps adjusting the RPM bias, and setting the needle down. It's about the mechanics of the equipment, it's about how it sounds. It's an experience that can't be matched with an ipod or Mp3 player.

    I don't pull the records out often, but when I do it's to actually listen to music, not as background filler. And it is true, music sounds better on vinyl
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    I have two turntables and about 500 vinyl albums. A few years ago in either Hamburg or Munich I was in a record store that had a huge vinyl section, and the records were all new. I love the medium.
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    I've got a couple of records, which I like to listen to from time to time: Iron Maiden - Powerslave; Black Sabbath - Heaven and Hell; Racer-X; Loudness; Yngwie Malmsteen - Rising Force; Van Halen - 1984
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    Blackbyrd music on Whyte recently yarded most of the CD's out and replaced them with records. 90% of the store is now vinyl and the selection, especially for new releases and reissues, is simply awesome.

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    I grew up with LP, 33 RPM, 8 track, cassettes so I have my biases that have been influenced by my past. I do wonder how many of a newer generation born after 1980 or so prefer CDs and digital music over vinyl.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Kitlope View Post
    Blackbyrd music on Whyte recently yarded most of the CD's out and replaced them with records. 90% of the store is now vinyl and the selection, especially for new releases and reissues, is simply awesome.
    I bet they never expected that to happen back in the early 90's when they were thinning out all the records to make room for CD's.

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    I bet they never expected that to happen back in the early 90's when they were thinning out all the records to make room for CD's.
    The real shame was that some bands & artists didn't even release their albums in the 90s on vinyl. Blue Rodeo - Five Days in July comes to mind. One of the finest releases of the decade and no vinyl option

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    Finally! Just bought one of my favorites, looks like it was reissued in 2016. One of the finest albums of the 80s... and a lot of worn cassette listens back in the day. This is going to sound phenomenal to my nostalgic ears. Woohoo!

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    ^Is this a reissue?
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    *double post
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    yuppers, sounds like most of the Petty catalog has been reissued. Need to find "Into the Great Wide Open" now.
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    ^You mentioned a few years ago you were looking for Blue Rodeo's "Five Days In July" in vinyl. Here is an Aussie first pressing:

    Amazon Canada
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    Oh wow nice find Norwood. Looking like it was finally issued in Dec. 2015

    Thats' the thing about this whole record thing of the last 5 years or so, prices have gone up in general which sucks however the good news is stuff is becoming available to the public that's been OOP for many years or decades. Take the good with the bad I guess.
    Time spent in the Rockies is never deducted from the rest of your life

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