Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

Direct-to-Vinyl Recording Makes a Comeback (Video)

Roblimo posted about a year and a half ago | from the round-and-round-the-little-stylus-goes dept.

Music 166

For many decades, gramophone records (the black vinyl discs in Grandma's attic) were made by cutting grooves directly into an acetate disc, then making a mold from that "master" and "pressing records." Nowadays, of course, we use digital recording software on our computers or even on our mobile phones. Vinyl? Strictly for fogies and maybe a few audiophiles who think analog recordings have a depth and warmth that CDs and MP3s lack. Naturally, SXSW is a haven for these folks, and among them Tim Lord found Wesley Wolfe and two German compatriots from vinylrecording.com, busily demonstrating their vinyl recording system, which is sort of the gramophone record equivalent of print on demand. Lots of background music in the video makes the voices a bit hard to hear; some might prefer the transcription -- although those who do will lose out on watching the vinyl recording machine in action. Either way. Or both. Up to you.

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Yeah! (3, Funny)

meowgoesthecat (2872191) | about a year and a half ago | (#43274887)

Can I listen to it on my mp3 player?

Re:Yeah! (0)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275031)

Can I listen to it on my mp3 player?

Does anybody know what sort of bandwidth a record can manage? Telephone lines were never good enough, within audible bands(DSL obviously did a bit better, where available) to hit even 64kb/s, which is sort of the low-water-mark for vaguely-listenable mp3s. Do records have enough bandwidth that you could coax 128kb/s, or even more, out of a suitably formatted recording using the various modem techniques?

Re:Yeah! (2)

Gordonjcp (186804) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275317)

You can get broadcast-quality audio out of suitably-balanced telephone lines...

Re:Yeah! (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275527)

CD4 records could do 45 khz, but they only used that to put a 15khz signal onto a 30khz carrier. Commercial discs are limited to 18 khz

Re:Yeah! (5, Informative)

Farmer Tim (530755) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275705)

Does anybody know what sort of bandwidth a record can manage?

An Ortofon DSS731 cutting head has a usable response from 5Hz to 25kHz, but typical playback systems fall short of this.

Telephone lines were never good enough

Telephone lines have a frequency response from 300Hz to 3kHz.

Do records have enough bandwidth that you could coax 128kb/s, or even more, out of a suitably formatted recording using the various modem techniques?

The bit rate of compressed audio isn't directly related to frequency response. A 64kb/s MP3 can reproduce a discrete 20kHz tone, provided no lower frequencies deemed more important by the psychoacoustic processing are present (the "swooshing" from hi-hats on low bit rate MP3s is the encoder deciding you don't need to hear those frequencies).

But to answer the question, a fresh vinyl recording played on a properly balanced tone arm should be indistinguishable from 48kHz uncompressed audio because it's uncompressed audio.

Re:Yeah! (1)

nightfury (2826503) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276065)

But more importantly, it responds properly to a well placed and timed pitch-nudge applied via middle and index fingers, or a gentle drag on the platter in transition.

Re:Yeah! (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276429)

I remember a magazine in the UK sometimes including Sinclair Spectrum disks that you could play to load a program into the computer through the cassette input. So it could manage at least 1200bps (think that's what the Spectrum cassette interface used).

Re:Yeah! (3, Funny)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275241)

Can I listen to it on my mp3 player?

Sure! get a turntable, connect it to the phono input of a mixer, connect the smallish cable to the ground pin near the phono input, connect the output of the mixer to some amplifier or powered speakers.

Put the vinyl on the turntable, put the mp3 player on the floor, climb on the mp3 player and listen.

Voila'.

Re:Yeah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275381)

> Can I listen to it on my mp3 player?

Sure! Follow these steps:

1) Put MP3 player on couch or chair
2) Sit on MP3 player
3) Listen to vinyl recording
4) ???
5) Profit!

Kids these days... (5, Funny)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43274909)

It's disgusting how so-called 'audiophiles' can bear to listen to music that has been tainted by electricity. Back in my day, we used Edison Cylinders, recorded entirely by the soundwaves emitted by the performance! (It is actually a neat process to watch, a horn concentrates the incoming sound and a sharp stylus attached to the diaphragm cuts the groove in the cylinder, 100% passive, except for the guy who brushes away the wax shavings)

Re:Kids these days... (2)

Kenja (541830) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275007)

Reminded of this guy... [youtube.com]

Hipster level infinite.

Re:Kids these days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275835)

i knew it was this sketch before i even clicked it. =]

Re:Kids these days... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275059)

In my day, all we had to listen to were seashells! I still keep my collection around because sometimes I need a break from the harshness of pressed vinyl.

Re:Kids these days... (1)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275495)

You know, it would not surprise me if there was a community into doing so, and that would be kinda awesome ^_^

Re:Kids these days... (3, Interesting)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275821)

You know, it would not surprise me if there was a community into doing so, and that would be kinda awesome ^_^

http://www.edisonia.com/ [edisonia.com] Recording and playback hardware, along with new blanks manufactured to period spec. (No association with them, though I've seen blanks that I think were produced by them used to record a couple of live performances)

Re:Kids these days... (3, Funny)

LWATCDR (28044) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275647)

Mister fancy pants with your lazy wax. We just listened to people play instruments!
Who is into Vinyl today.
Hipsters.
Now get your plaid pant wear butt and $300 backpack on your fixie bike and get out of here.

Re:Kids these days... (0)

fermion (181285) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275715)

This is funny, but the reality is that much music is tainted by not electricity, but VLSI electronics. When records were first put out, the sweet sound that so many talk about came from vacuum tubes and analog components controlling the recording and reproduction. Much of rock music, the music that drove the sale of records for so long, was based on the simple operational amplified connected by relatively unsophisticated interconnects, again allowing for a certain imperfection as well as the overdriving of the opamp. Now we have a much simpler music played on much more complex devices that allows a more consistent, if not perfect, reproduction.Simply put the recording is digital, the playback is digital, there just is not so much there to compensate and adjust. The process is dead simple. There is no room for atmosphere. Really this is back to the days of a bunch of guys yelling and playing as hard as they could around a wax cylinder.

Re:Kids these days... (1)

epyT-R (613989) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276073)

your appeal to atmosphere (whatever that is) is undefined. up to the nyquist frequency the recording is indistinguishable from the analog source. you get the added benefit of much less noise and no degradation of the media.

if you want that old 'vinyl' sound can listen to period rock with the proper equalization.

Re:Kids these days... (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276613)

The bigger issue I'm hearing with albums is where the mastering and or remastering isn't done very well. A lot of the really old jazz CDs which were essentially just a transfer with just enough processing to remove the snaps and pops, sound far better than a lot of the new stuff in terms of audio quality.

I'm personally skeptical about analog really sounding any different, but the mastering process is different, and a lot of the remastered stuff strips away at the CD's advantages.

Re:Kids these days... (1)

dunng808 (448849) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276705)

You are on the right track. Back in the 70's Audio mag did some stories which proposed that the warmth of tube sound comes from how the amp reacts when over-driven. A transistor amp clips hard and produces odd numbered harmonics. A tube amp has a softer transition into clipping and produces even numbered harmonics. (Maybe not odd vs. even as much as which dominates.) Even numbered harmonics blend in better with original frequencies while odd numbered harmonics stand out from the original, so equal amounts do not produce an equal effect. A waveform enriched by second and fourth harmonics will sound richer and fatter, which a waveform enriched by third and fifth harmonics will sound rough and buzzy.

Generally we are talking about clipping of transients.

Analog tape also introduces clipping, and a well made pro deck (15ips half track stereo or better) will do so gently. Digital equipment clips extremely hard, so max level must never be exceeded. A digital recording can contain transients at much higher levels relative to the main waveform body, thus pushing the playback amps into clipping. And if these are transistors, the clipping sounds ugly.

Why do IC op-amps sound worse that discrete transistor amps? Could be that to create the necessary resistors the IC designers use a bunch of transistors, which exacerbate the problem.

Re:Kids these days... (1)

Joska (78000) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276347)

Yes, yes, a thousand times yes! As long as the wax is naturally occurring, those cylinders were the last pure, accurate and worthwhile means of storing music. Damn those electrophiles!

Re:Kids these days... (1)

Holistic Missile (976980) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276739)

Just be careful with those cylinders, especially if you are nervous and on a TV show. Double if the cylinder is 'one of a kind.'

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnsizkVjGm8 [youtube.com]

Dub Plates (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43274915)

Whoever wrote this needs to ask somebody. DJs having been quietly making dub plates for performances for years and years and years

Re:Dub Plates (0)

BitZtream (692029) | about a year and a half ago | (#43274959)

Whenever you see Roblimo post a video, its of Tim Lord (timothy) and it illustrates just how incredible ignorant of the subject matter at hand timothy is.

I can not think of a single slashdot post in its history that timothy has made that was informative, or even had an accurate summary or headline. Its really hard to get it wrong as much as he does.

crap (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43274965)

Vinyl? Strictly for fogies and maybe a few audiophiles who think analog recordings have a depth and warmth that CDs and MP3s lack

What kind of uninformed rant is this? Despite the rise of CDs, Vinyl remains king in the electronic/hiphop/whatever DJ scene. Fogies and audiofools are in the minority!

Re:crap (3, Insightful)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275139)

Vinyl remains king in the electronic/hiphop/whatever DJ scene.

Where sound quality is of absolutely no concern.

Re:crap (2)

xaxa (988988) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275395)

Vinyl remains king in the electronic/hiphop/whatever DJ scene.

Where sound quality is of absolutely no concern.

Not quite. It's really obvious if the instruments (synthesisers etc) are cheap, poor quality ones, and quite common for people to consider how good a venue's sound is before seeing a band/DJ play.

In any case, I've not seen a DJ using a turntable since... ever (~2004)? They use either laptops or CDs. Most electronic bands I see use at least one laptop.

Re:crap (1)

xaxa (988988) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275549)

It's really obvious if the instruments (synthesisers etc) are cheap, poor quality ones...

I should say, it's really obvious to me, and others, but certainly a lot of people don't care.

I wear high-ish quality earplugs (£20), and don't take any drugs beyond one or two alcoholic drinks.

Re:crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275845)

I wear high-ish quality earplugs (£20), and don't take any drugs beyond one or two alcoholic drinks.

I'd argue that LSD and MD*A (ie, hippie/rave drugs) actually increase one's ability to perceive subtle differences in sound. alcohol, without a doubt, reduces it. Pot is debatable.

Re:crap (1)

xaxa (988988) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276215)

I'd argue that LSD and MD*A (ie, hippie/rave drugs) actually increase one's ability to perceive subtle differences in sound. alcohol, without a doubt, reduces it. Pot is debatable.

I'm completely put off by the uncertainty of what I'd be buying, and from watching the people that do take various drugs. I've considered MDMA, but I'm not interested enough to try it. (I don't use caffeine, so a large cola can get me pretty excited...)

Most people at the clubs I go to do amphetamines or ketamine. It seems to make them boring to talk to (too easily distracted, unable to concentrate enough to finish a sentence).

Re:crap (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275149)

hey, this guy in germany who sold me this metal box with vacuum tubes sticking out said it would help with my music playback and so far, after buying accessory after accessory I am left with no money...

Re:crap (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275269)

No. Vinyl is no longer king shit of EDM. That would be laptops and CDJs nowadays. Your knowledge is about 10 years out of date. Yes, Hip-Hop and turntablists and the like still like vinyl to some extent, but pretty much ALL mainstream EDM, trance, techno, progressive, dubstep, whatever, uses CDs and laptops.

Welcome to the 21st century.

Re:crap (1)

epyT-R (613989) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276129)

then why do most of them use cdjs now... with flash drives? sure sometimes they break out the vinyl for fun and show, but it is not the dominant media anymore.

Not new (2)

dpilot (134227) | about a year and a half ago | (#43274967)

There was another round of direct-to-disk back in the 70's, and who knows how many others, before and after that.

I bought a Sheffield disk of Prokofiev's "Romeo and Juliet" back in the mid 70's, and there were other disks in their lineup. Here is someone else's on ebay now - http://www.ebay.com/itm/Prokofiev-Romeo-Juliet-Excerpts-LP-Sheffield-Lab-Direct-Disc-Leinsdorf-LAPO-/380457368606 [ebay.com]

Re:Not new (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43276525)

I have several Sheffields and non are for sale.

Collectors (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43274969)

It's the superior medium for collectors. Some of you collect old game cartridges right? Do they feel good in your hand? Sure they do. I can use an emulator for that.

Re:Collectors (1)

jythie (914043) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275617)

Well, there is something to be said for the fun of ritualistic engagement. I kinda laugh at the people who claim that vinyl is superior to digital, but I have no complaints against the crowd that likes working with the old tech because they enjoy it.

And I have to admit my own vice... vintage camera lenses. Technologically inferior to the nice autofocused image stabilized coated lenses of today.. but they are still fun.

Re:Collectors (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43276147)

Hey everyone has a hobby. I imagine record collecting is a bit like old baseball cards. Just because neither are my thing means there's anything wrong with it.

And if people want to record to vinyl, that's their business. It's a bit like homebrew games for old consoles. You're trying to make the best of an inferior technology, and I can see how that would be part of the charm of it.

Nice, but (1)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a year and a half ago | (#43274981)

But I've seen on the net two other organizations, UK and Italy, that produce one-off vinyls. There was also a home vinyl carving station from vestax (vrx 2000) but I guess vynil mastering needs a LOT more care than cd mastering. Unless you like to see needles jumping.

Re:Nice, but (1)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275327)

but I guess vynil mastering needs a LOT more care than cd mastering. Unless you like to see needles jumping.

I suspect that the opposite is true: Vinyl cutting is definitely on the fiddly side of of things you would actually want to do in the field; but it can be done. Cutting CD pits in the field is sufficiently difficult that it just isn't done. Dye/laser based systems are cheap as chips; but to the best of my knowledge no mechanical pit-cutter has ever been used, certainly not in rooms with normal sized dust and crud.

Depth and Warmth (4, Interesting)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275009)

Are generally found to be distortion and a roll off of high frequencies when one bothers to take apart the actual music reproduction.

Some people have become accustomed to these artifacts and so prefer them.

The only real antidote is to go to live music performances to hear what they really sound like.

I'd recommend that for people used to modern pop recordings too. I think many would be shocked to hear what they are missing in the horribly compressed and otherwise doctored up recordings that are sold today.

Re:Depth and Warmth (2)

Shinobi (19308) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275073)

Indeed.

Even though I'm not religious, I try to go to various church concerts here in Stockholm, just for the acoustics, and for the organs....

There's NO recording equipment that can capture the full majesty of a huge organ in a church or cathedral. Then there's the mixing and if direct-to-online, encoding....

I fear for when the current Ableton Live generation is in charge of the studios, and not just "musicians" =(

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

the eric conspiracy (20178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275193)

I was fortunate to have been part of a music education program in High School which involved going to the Boston Symphony Saturday afternoons.

If the fossilization theory is right, I fossilized around something pretty good as Symphony Hall in Boston is generally considered to have the best acoustics in the New World, and in the top 5 world-wide.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Symphony_Hall,_Boston [wikipedia.org]

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

Shinobi (19308) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275467)

I've visited Stockholms Konserthus, Berwaldhallen and Operan a number of times, and yes, it's a special feeling to experience music in concert halls. Even some metal can be really enhanced there(Such as Therion for example... Or Apocalyptica)

I don't subscribe to that fossilization theory though, because my taste in music has changed with time and I'm in my mid-thirties.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

Gordonjcp (186804) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275413)

There's NO recording equipment that can capture the full majesty of a huge organ in a church or cathedral. Then there's the mixing and if direct-to-online, encoding....

Exactly. The dubstep kiddies are Doing It Wrong. If you want bass, you need a pipe organ.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

Shinobi (19308) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275563)

Oh man, the gut feeling when the organ rumbles....

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276105)

Every year I subject myself to the Christmas Show at Macy's (formerly Wanamaker's) in Philly just to hear the organ.

(Yes, I know they do regular recitals...)

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

Shinobi (19308) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276567)

To further bring out the point about what I fear in regards to the Ableton Live generation: So-called "epic trailer" music, that is so generic and bland that is all the rage on many esports streams to give a break from the dubshit...

Two Steps From Hell, Audiomachine and similar crap.... I mean, it's so bland and overboosted that it becomes... yawnworthy...

He said huge organ (1)

PeeweeJD (623974) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275461)

heh-heh. that was cool

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

imsabbel (611519) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276035)

I would phrase this different.

There IS recording equipment that CAN get the full majestity of a huge organ in a church or cathedral.... its the PLAYBACK equipment and venure that will never be able replicate the sound.

Re:Depth and Warmth (4, Funny)

Nimey (114278) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275121)

Your real audiophile keeps a can of Monster Air with precisely-tuned isotope and pollutant counts, and opens it whenever he goes to a concert.

Re:Depth and Warmth (3, Insightful)

fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275123)

Some people have become accustomed to these artifacts and so prefer them.

My personal theory is that (most) people's musical tastes, both in terms of medium and in terms of genre, tend to fossilize around the time that they either graduate high school or first get laid. Once fossilized, any vices and inconveniences of the medium are imbued with a warm sentimentality and the preferred genre is enshrined as real music, as compared to the outdated stuff listened to by those who came before them, and the noise listened to by damn kids these days.

Re:Depth and Warmth (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275661)

Herp a derp. u am so smart! Can you be my teacher 4 a day? DERP!

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

u38cg (607297) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275803)

Congratulations, you're not far off. Humans use music as a group bonding tool, and once we form groups (goths, emos, punks, indie...) with close-knit social bonds, the need for the music is no longer as strong and it fades over time.

Re:Depth and Warmth (3, Funny)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276117)

as a group bonding tool

That's why I only listen to porno music.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

gTsiros (205624) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276561)

Hm.

how does graduation, or fornication, affect perception of sound?

ever since i constructed the 200 L, 12" full-range speakers, i can hear details i could never hear before. MP3? screw that, i can tell if a cd has been properly recorded. metal? pointless. pop? even more so. it sounds clear and perfect, but it is like artificial food flavoring. Acoustic jazz (no electric guitar, eg)? yes. full orchestra? sweet sweet fulfillment.

I had sex 10 years ago for the first time and graduated high school 15 years ago, fwiw.

in relation to this topic, i am thinking of getting a turntable, see if the filters on DACs' outputs have any effect on stereo imaging (and for the first time in my life, excepting binaural audio which in itself is a *revelation*, i understood what it means, because you have to place your head in centimeter-exact position).

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

hedwards (940851) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276753)

Fossilization of that sort has little to do with those milestones, it's just that at those points people tend to correlate to a drop in pressure to be open minded about new experiences.

For example, once one gets married, their partner will have a pretty substantial say in what activities they can try in the future and won't be likely to expose one to the broad range of ideas that a new girlfriend would.

And for people who don't move on to college, one isn't likely to be forced to be exposed to all the new music and such after one graduates high school.

So, there is probably something to it, but ultimately, it's most likely a byproduct of not pushing ones boundaries and comfort zone. I don't personally bother with new music lately, but that's largely a budgetary thing. Finding good indie music is easier than it was when I was in high school, but it's still a lot harder than finding Bieber.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

dkleinsc (563838) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275323)

The only real antidote is to go to live music performances to hear what they really sound like. I'd recommend that for people used to modern pop recordings too. I think many would be shocked to hear what they are missing in the horribly compressed and otherwise doctored up recordings that are sold today.

Except that at least for some acts lip-synching a la Milli Vanilli is now the rule rather than the exception, so depending on the group the live concert may just be a really loud playback.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

Master Moose (1243274) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276345)

And then you get the bands who decide think that "Loud" is the best way to hear their music - Displaying nothing of the musical dynamics that you may hear on their studio recordings.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

acoustix (123925) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275473)

Are generally found to be distortion and a roll off of high frequencies when one bothers to take apart the actual music reproduction.

Some people have become accustomed to these artifacts and so prefer them.

The only real antidote is to go to live music performances to hear what they really sound like.

I'd recommend that for people used to modern pop recordings too. I think many would be shocked to hear what they are missing in the horribly compressed and otherwise doctored up recordings that are sold today.

While I generally agree with your statement, many of the modern live pop bands do the same thing live that they do on recordings. It's a shame that the live performances are just as doctored as the recordings are.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

Mashiki (184564) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275525)

I'd recommend that for people used to modern pop recordings too. I think many would be shocked to hear what they are missing in the horribly compressed and otherwise doctored up recordings that are sold today.

That's because over compression and doctoring are the norm, really I think it's more of a cause that a person knows that in life there is no crisp clearness, it's everything around you that makes music, or even talking warm and have depth. You remove that and you remove what makes it unique. I suppose someone should come up with an audio version of the uncanny valley, it's really the same thing.

 

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

houghi (78078) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275651)

I recommend you do not mess with what others prefer.

Why give people an 'antidote'? They prefer it that way.

When I go and listen to live music, I miss a LOT more in quality then when I listen to a record. I am not sitting or standing in the right position according to how the music boxes are standing. The sound person was off. There are people singing along with the song. I am snogging a girl. I might even order a beer during the highlight of the evening.

Music is not about the quality of the recording. It is about the emotion that is brings and the memories that it feeds.

This one time as a kid, I was listening at a live classical concert and they were singing some opera. We were there with some 10 friends. All around the age of 17-19 and it started of very boring. Then we started to listen to the lyrics and he was singing about the butler doing the wife and the maid doing the man of the house. It was one big orgy. Some other hilarious stories were told as well.
We were a bit immature and we started to laugh. Loud and hysterically. I mean come on, it was funny as hell.

The adults in the concert hall were all shushing us, because they could not hear the quality of his music. They were pointing to us and urged us to be quiet.

After the concert the performer came to us and he congratulated us for not only listening but also understanding the music. He specially picked that music, so people would react to it and we were the only ones that did. And this was some big name in the opera industry (no, I do not remember his name.)

He was happy, as a performer, that we looked beyond the mere quality for which he was famous, but listened, really listened to the music. And he was right. The fact that it was a superior quality sung by some big name was a nice bonus. It was not the main thing. The quality of the music, the quality of the performer, the quality of the music hall. None of that was really important.

So if you think that music is all about quality, you are now officially an adult. You are incapable of listening to the music and I feel sorry for you.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276155)

Why give people an 'antidote'? They prefer it that way.

Personally I'm willing to let sleeping dogs lie. But when the dog wakes up and starts spewing pseudo scientific crap about how MY choice is inferior, it's time to start smashing egos.

Re:Depth and Warmth (1)

tlhIngan (30335) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276021)

Are generally found to be distortion and a roll off of high frequencies when one bothers to take apart the actual music reproduction.

Correct. Tubes distort "harmonically" when overdriven (which happens easily and often). It's one reason why tubes are generally preferred for audio effects boxes because overdriving them is what you want, and what comes out sounds good and doesn't make your listeners want to rip their ears off.

Transistors are much better as long as they stay in the linear region of operation. However, once you exceed that region, they distort, and their distortion introduces harsher harmonics, nevermind the even worst ones you get when they're clipping.

Vinyl's an interesting case - there's something to be said about its distortions, but it's also because of the limits of mastering which resulted in the loudness wars not happening to it. (Note: it's possible to have dynamic-range-compressed masters sent to Vinyl, in which case they sound just as awful as the CD).

Re:Depth and Warmth (2)

NoMaster (142776) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276541)

"Vinyl's an interesting case - there's something to be said about its distortions, but it's also because of the limits of mastering which resulted in the loudness wars not happening to it. (Note: it's possible to have dynamic-range-compressed masters sent to Vinyl, in which case they sound just as awful as the CD)"

Errr... you do realise that the "loudness wars" began before the Age of the CD, don't you? Over-compression was a common discussion point in the audio engineering trade & audiophile magazines in the 70's, and it was taken to extremes on rock/pop singles & compilations. Not only was it possible, but it was commonplace.

And that was on top of the necessity for a certain amount of DRC anyway, just to 'fit' the signal onto vinyl's limited dynamic range (55-65dB max for a pristine commercially-pressed album vs 96dB? for a CD). Better than that is theoretically possible - in the case of vinyl, careful cutting and a willingness to ignore the effects of pickup compliance on tracking can get you get up around 80dB (IIRC, the famous Telarc release of the 1812 Overture in the late 70's was up around there, but only the best turntables could track it through the cannon shots), but ultimately you're limited by the noise floor of vinyl at one end and the ability to cut/track the groove at the other.

So vinyl by definition requires noticeable amounts of compression, and the "loudness wars" of over-compression started well before the advent of CDs. CDs certainly made it worse, though...

Re:Depth and Warmth (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43276211)

Y'know what I'd be really interested to test sometime.

Take a record of any sort, play it, and record the audio to an mp3. There's various devices that will do this... one on thinkgeek if I recall correctly.

Now take one of these audiophiles and stuff them in a room that has nothing more than a pair of speakers. Have them be stupid high quality, all the bullshit that audiophiles crave.

Now, have them listen to the mp3 file, and the record. Obviously, to avoid the sound of the needle hitting the record, you would have to start the record, once its playing, fade the music into the speakers, then fade out before the end of the song. Do the EXACT SAME fading in and out for the mp3.

See if the audiophile is capable of telling which recording was the record, and which was the mp3.

That "warmth" and "depth" are electrical noise (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275049)

The old hi-fi systems had superb ESR that rival that of a poorly made PC power supply. Its all a gimmick to sell to the old, rich folks who used to listen to vinyl when they were younger and stoned out of their minds.

Back to bad times (5, Interesting)

Airon (108830) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275083)

As a professional recording, editing and mixing engineer, all I can say is NO THANK YOU.

For those who place a premium on scratchy, error-prone, expensive, one-time and short recordings this might be neat. There are lots of reasons we started using tape in the late 40s and early 50s in the music recording industry, and loads of reasons we're recording digitally now.

Quality, speed, cost. A direct-to-disc recording system ain't it on any of those fronts.

Good idea! (1)

EllisDees (268037) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275097)

Totally worth doing! Now if only there were some way of playing that analog record with fidelity anything even remotely approaching a dollar store cd player. Even the most expensive record player has measurable wow and flutter, and driving a needle through vinyl grooves immediately degrades the sound. What's the point of this again?

Re:Good idea! (2)

MightyYar (622222) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276173)

Money.

Re:Good idea! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43276231)

Now if only there were some way of playing that analog record with fidelity anything even remotely approaching a dollar store cd player.

Remind me what kind of quality DAC this dollar store disc player will have? There's a lot a digital device can lose in this area, and by default analogue devices have a definite advantage –at least regarding the lack of a DAC – here.

Hmmm (1)

Waveguide04 (811184) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275101)

Does this mean that we can usher in a new wave of music piracy? Don't need any MP3s, just distribute the content as 3D printer files and drive up the demand for such devices and filament. :)

Placebo (1)

rudy_wayne (414635) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275117)

A while back I was looking at an advertisement for a medication used to treat people with a bladder problem. In the fine print it said that in clinical trials, 79% of the people who took this medication reported an improvement in their bladder problem, compared to 49% who reported an improvement after taking a placebo. Half the people who took a placebo claimed they got better.

These must be the same people who believe that vinyl LPs " have a depth and warmth that CDs and MP3s lack"

Hear that? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275155)

Its the sound of maybe 5,000 people who actually think this is cool, and the maybe 1/3 of them who would actually buy a record and only half of those would actually listen to it.

This is just some fad being put out in the hopes of playing on nostalgia or perhaps people who would actually think they might be worth money someday and that's it. Its like how some horror movies were put on VHS a couple years and it caused no resurgence, same thing with tapes and a couple releases of sega genesis games put back out. No one cared and they all fizzled before they even launched.

The people who truly have a passion for records do not care about this. Like my best friends uncle, he doesn't care a bit about this or anything released on record. He prefers original records from when they were widely used and his collection is about 3,000+

Gullible Moron! (4, Interesting)

t4ng* (1092951) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275169)

"...the first Super Mario he had a square nose. That’s what your audio looks like in 16-bit format. What vinyl’s actually doing is stretching those square waves and rounding them out..."

"Well, I have no technical training at all. No mechanical engineering experience."

Yes, and it shows. I wonder if he thinks black and white kinescope recordings from the 50's have more warmth and depth than digital HDTV.

Re:Gullible Moron! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275585)

Jesus, the guy has no fucking clue what he's talking about. He's just parroting back jargon he's heard.

I wouldn't buy a dish sponge from this idiot.

And why nobody's quoting this... (2)

xded (1046894) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276111)

Tim: Usually in 2013, you see people going from vinyl to digital formats, here you are doing the opposite, you’ve got a CD player here that’s feeding music over to a vinyl cutting lathe.

Believe what you want about vinyl records, but recording on vinyl something coming out of CD player goes against any logic he could try to follow.

Re:Gullible Moron! (1)

Saffaya (702234) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276393)

I don't know what the kinescope you refer to is, but France had black and white HD (737i) in 1949 and until 1983 :

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Analog_high-definition_television_system [wikipedia.org]

My point is, do not belittle accomplishments of the past just because they are from the past.

Re:Gullible Moron! (1)

0123456 (636235) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276459)

I don't know what the kinescope you refer to is, but France had black and white HD (737i) in 1949 and until 1983 :

Kinescope is a fancy way of saying 'pointing a film camera at a TV screen'. You can see the picture quality it produces on old black and white Doctor Who shows from the BBC.

Can we get a "Hipster" category? (3, Insightful)

Gothmolly (148874) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275185)

So I can ignore it?

But I thought my $6000 PlayStation was the best (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275197)

at playing audio... dat depth and mid-level tone.

See, I'm an audiophile, too, since I can put together words like, hi-fi, depth, tone, nuance, g-chord all in one sentence...

Content is all that matters (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275295)

The current vinyl comeback is cute and I'm happy it might be helping certain record stores/independant artists as those are generally great people and support great communities. On the other hand vinyl sounds awful with even a reasonable setup. Most annoying to me is a lot of content is released as vinyl only, or even LIMITED vinyl release. Nope I always prefer a digital or cd source as I hate wow and flutter and distortion. The community around the vinyl comeback is a bit mad, let's just focus on good content guys.

Not cool enough (3, Funny)

shadowrat (1069614) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275367)

I'm holding out for 3d printed records.

Re:Not cool enough (2)

mars64 (2740799) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275633)

Almost there! We can currently print at an end-product resolution of 600dpi, translating to ~6-bit/11kHz fidelity. Compared to the average professionally produced CD of 16-bit/44.1kHz fidelity. http://www.amandaghassaei.com/3D_printed_record.html [amandaghassaei.com]

Digital music is.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275371)

only ever going to be an approximation of the source.

Re:Digital music is.. (1)

epyT-R (613989) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276745)

just like your analog recording....only with less noise, wow, flutter, intermod distortion and media degradation.

forget this, real info about vinyl cutting here: (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275375)

http://www.lathetrolls.net/

the vinylrecorder have a pretty bad reputation, for shall we say "people skills"

Re:forget this, real info about vinyl cutting here (1)

epyT-R (613989) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276779)

people skills are overrated.. i dont care someone's attitude as long as their facts and conclusions are correct.

Clean digital, please (5, Informative)

steveha (103154) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275459)

One of my favorite albums was recorded "direct to disk", with a vinyl cutting machine recording the performance live, and the band playing each record side straight through in one set. (The album was James Newton Howard and Friends.)

But here's the thing: they also ran a digital recorder, and the CD was made from the clean digital recording. Then they mastered the CD properly, and it's a very nice CD. I don't think it would be improved by a less-clean recording process.

Oh, my. It's been re-issued [sheffieldlab.com] , with a new master made from the direct to disc vinyl recording! So it looks like Sheffield Labs thinks it is improved by using a less-clean recording process. No thanks, I'll keep my clean digital copy.

There is exactly one good thing about vinyl recordings: they make it impossible to really over-gain the music to where the wave forms are mangled by hard-clipping. But the alternative is to make a digital copy and just, you know, don't over-gain it.

As with tube amplifiers, there is distortion associated with vinyl records that some people like. The solution is to make a digital filter that simulates this distortion. I helped write such a filter, and I actually like using it when I listen to music with headphones. But I don't want this sort of distortion impressed forever upon the music at the time of recording!

We have the technology to just make a clean copy of the artist's performance. Once that is done, the album can be mastered, and remastered. Heck, record it with a clean digital process and then carve it into vinyl if you want to... just keep the clean digital copy around, so that someday you can change your mind and release a version without the analog distortion.

Meh (2)

Niris (1443675) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275559)

This article makes people who listen to vinyl sound pretentious as all get out. I have a decent sized collection of vinyl records that I listen to daily, but that's mainly because I won a pretty sweet turntable and stereo set. MP3 has its place, like in the car and whatnot, but I do enjoy just putting on a record and listening to it from start to finish as well. I also enjoy owning the physical records and going through the case artwork, etc. A couple of my Floyd and Jethro Tull albums have photo books in them. I guess the point is who cares what form your music takes? If you enjoy it, go for it. If not, that's cool too.

Re:Meh (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275869)

But how can I feel like I'm better than you if I have that mindset?

No, I'd rather take a few arguments made by those ignorant to the benefits of vinyl and use that to show how all people who listen to vinyl are idiots.

Fogies and Audiophiles? What about djs? (1)

mars64 (2740799) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275567)

Despite the audiophilia-disposition of the video, my personal observation has been that DJs and audiophiles have kept the industry in motion. I personally continue to collect vinyl, because I actively play vinyl. It's a heartache when a venue doesn't have turntables, but I do have Serato to keep me in the game. But I digress. http://blog.dubspot.com/the-resurgence-of-vinyl-continues-in-2012-record-stores-making-a-comeback/ [dubspot.com] I'd be curious to know what the conversion rate of newbie-djs-with-digital-tools-to-vinyl is. With such ubiquitous technologies for emulating turntables (and jesus poses!), it seems feasible that a wider market share of DJs contributes to vinyl's extended lifespan.

Re:Fogies and Audiophiles? What about djs? (2)

Voyager529 (1363959) | about a year and a half ago | (#43276009)

Just 'friended' you because it's always nice to see a fellow DJ on Slashdot, and thus, I think I'm baiting myself for an "offtopic" mod since I gather that you will understand me, but many with mod points will not. I started out using Mixmeister (still an excellent product in its own right), but then went to Torq (also an excellent product, just a bit too late to market with a few too many shortcomings in its early releases), and finally got myself an SL-3 a few years ago. There are three broad reasons why I'm unconvinced that DJs are keeping the market alive in the way that you claim:

1.) The best selling record for the last several years is, unsurprisingly, the Serato control vinyl. Resultantly, a handful of vinyl pressing plants are still up and running, but the medium as a whole isn't really garnering many DJs.

2.) Panasonic stopped making the Technics 1200s in 2010. I love my Numark TTX decks, and there's been a Stanton turntable that a few jocks have said comes in "close second" to the 1200, but getting into the vinyl game these days requires much more intent, especially since...

3a.) Controllers are all the rage these days. Everyone from American Audio to Pioneer is making a controller with jog wheels and cue points these days, and I'd wager that most of the bedroom DJs are starting there, simply because it's a much more affordable starting point than a pair of turntables at minimum $800/pair - you can get a Virtual DJ controller, the kitchen sink edition of VDJ, and a whole lot of Beatport tracks for the same money.

3b.) I'd love to see plenty more top 40 tracks make their way onto vinyl so I could get a better handle at spinning real vinyl vs. control tone (I do mobile stuff, not clubs). The chicken-and-egg problem is that it's incredibly difficult to amass enough records to justify the workflow, and even then you're hard pressed to get Crooklyn Clan style transitions and party breaks pressed to wax. Sure, you'll always find a club guy or two who will keep to vinyl, and yes, I'd love nothing more than to be able to mark up all of my records with cue labels and be able to go out and do a set with them. If you're starting out now, it takes a LOT more dedication to get a pair of turntables and enough vinyl to forego a DVS, and at that, you'll need to make a name for yourself with "I only spin REAL vinyl" being your schtick, and then find someone who cares enough about what you use to make that an actual selling point, AND is willing to pay you what you're asking since you'll inevitably be asking more than the next guy who is using the aforementioned controller and collection of MP3s from Beatport or DJ City.

Me personally, I was thrilled to find Deborah Cox's "Something Happened on the Way to Heaven" and Tiesto's "Silence" (the "In Search of Sunrise" mix that takes the entire side of a 33) both pressed on vinyl. If I find a recognizable track here or there, I'll pick it up. Every so often I'll go on eBay on a vinyl binge and see if I can find any memorable songs pressed on a record, but it once annually, if that, when I find myself setting Scratch Live into "thru" mode to play an actual record...if for no other reason that I've been spoiled by relative mode where bumping the needle doesn't actually cause a disruption to the music.

obligatory - The Secret Society of Lathe Trolls (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275621)

The Secret Society of Lathe Trolls
A forum devoted to record-cutting deviants, renegades, professionals & experimenters.
http://www.lathetrolls.net/

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=k58qrcIJiEE

Tired of the "Warmth and Depth" Strawman (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43275707)

I buy new vinyl, talk to people at the record store every now and then, and worked with a few people to design a tube amp. Not once have I heard anyone use "warmth" or "depth" to describe music on vinyl. Smoother waveforms at high frequencies is the argument generally used in favor of vinyl, even-ordered harmonics is the argument generally used in favor of tubes. You can argue to death over whether or not these things matter or if the benefits outweigh the negatives of both technologies, but stop using the "warmth and depth" strawman argument you read on the internet from a guy who went to a record store with a bunch of PBR guzzling hipsters. I'm sure I could find people who swear 56Kb MP3s sound no different than 192Kb MP3s and make some fine strawman arguments, too.

It's all in your mind (1)

Mister Liberty (769145) | about a year and a half ago | (#43275791)

Hearing the difference between 128 and 164 kbit/s, between Vinyl and
CD, between Klipsch speakers and B&W speakers -- it's all in you mind.

To NOT know is to enjoy unimpeded. So yes, give me vinyl; just don't
tell me.

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?