Is the resurgence of vinyl LP's a fad?

My2Cents

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Who benefits from the resurgence of vinyl... a 100 year old medium, much of which is now being pressed from digital masters that weren't even meant for vinyl pressing?

I say the record companies (and possibly artists) who will increase their profits from a disc that has a retail cost of around 40% more than a CD and will solve the problem of streaming for them (which both artists and the record corporations hate).
The environment surely won't benefit (although servers are not exactly environmentally friendly either).

125 years ago electric (along with steam) was the dominant power for personal vehicles (cars) until the Model T came out. Even after the Model T came out, Henry Ford's wife (Clara) continued to drive a 1914 Detroit Electric.

We're going backwards in every respect... 20 years from now will folks be shunning texting, TikTok'ing, 'X' ing etc. (or perhaps even the entire idea of the internet)? Will corded phones become the new 'thing'?

After all, who wants to e-mail / twitter when you can buy a nice fountain pen, carefully compose a letter to someone (paying attention to spelling and grammar) and place it in a mailbox with a pretty stamp on it? The anticipation and waiting for a reply is so satisfying!
 

twinkletoes

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I wouldn’t call a year on year increase for 12-14 years a “fad”. Far from it, rightly or wrongly the format is still very much enjoyed and purchased, and ultimately if that gets more people listening to music I’m all for it.

And server farms are far from environmentally friendly. PVC can easily be recycled and most vinyl these isn’t virgin, and often made from other plastics.

You realise we still use steam in the modern age within large industrial complexes ie power stations, nuclear subs and ships with New York infrastructure built on it, that’s why you see those steam stacks they actually have a steam utility. That tech is far from dead and very much needed and in some cases there’s just other way.

And first car invented was actually battery powered. But I digress.

And god I hope social media media disappears! (Never will)
 
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barcpc

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As with all things (writing with an expensive fountain pen, using a cheap pen, CD, Vinyl, etc.) it comes to choices and tastes of the people that use it.
Vinyl has the bonus of the cover art that a lot of people like and is lost with streaming.
From my point of view I prefer CDs, because of the small books that come with them and the commitment you have to do to listen to a full CD as opposed to simply skipping songs in a streaming app.

Back to the original question, I think vinyl is a fad, a fancy renaissance of old days gone but... who am I to argue when it is something based on personal choices and taste?

If you like it, buy them, that's it...
 

speedthing

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No its not a fad its always been my preferred medium. Its what may parent had its what I grew up with I do have a big CD collection and even bigger vinyl collection. I have records original pressings that are older than I am albums like Led Zep's first album and Black Sabbath's first album. This is analogue music recorded on analogue equipment I have the CDs of those albums and they are not a patch on the original vinyl recordings.
 
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Fandango Andy

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Who benefits from the resurgence of vinyl... a 100 year old medium, much of which is now being pressed from digital masters that weren't even meant for vinyl pressing?

I say the record companies (and possibly artists) who will increase their profits from a disc that has a retail cost of around 40% more than a CD and will solve the problem of streaming for them (which both artists and the record corporations hate).
The environment surely won't benefit (although servers are not exactly environmentally friendly either).

125 years ago electric (along with steam) was the dominant power for personal vehicles (cars) until the Model T came out. Even after the Model T came out, Henry Ford's wife (Clara) continued to drive a 1914 Detroit Electric.

We're going backwards in every respect... 20 years from now will folks be shunning texting, TikTok'ing, 'X' ing etc. (or perhaps even the entire idea of the internet)? Will corded phones become the new 'thing'?

After all, who wants to e-mail / twitter when you can buy a nice fountain pen, carefully compose a letter to someone (paying attention to spelling and grammar) and place it in a mailbox with a pretty stamp on it? The anticipation and waiting for a reply is so satisfying!

While nothing you say about early electric cars is untrue, there is a bit of smoke and mirrors in play to make it fit your point.

As for the resurgence vinyl being a fad, I think it has been going on too long to be considered a fad. Just because something is new it doesn't make it better, just different. I wear a mechanical watch. A digital watch would keep better time, but my watch is 25 years old and going strong, it will probably outlast me. Will any current smart watches last the decade? Same with records. I have vinyl from the 50's and CD's from the 80's that all still work, my first Ipod from 2006 (I think) is long dead.

As for my relationship with vinyl records, I purchased a lot second hand in the early 2000's mainly from charity shops for £1 each. I still have them and play them, I don't tend to buy records now as they are too expensive.
 
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My2Cents

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And first car invented was actually battery powered. But I digress.
Indeed, that's what I pointed out, after 120 years we are going back to electric cars once more.

"And server farms are far from environmentally friendly"... I did point that out too!

Ironically vinyl purists have always been about heavyweight 'virgin' vinyl as being essential for good quality pressings but two of the so called 'green' LP pressing plants in the Netherlands use 'some' recycled PVC pellets (from batches of bad pressings that they produce) or polyethylene terephthalate.
How good is this for the quality of the records pressed?

Funny... if LP's made out of PET end up in the US they will need to carry the California Prop. 65 label: "this product contains chemicals know to the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm"

43.2 million LPs sold in the USA alone in 2023 & 100+ million globally
Vinyl is dead
View attachment 6525
Indeed... not dead.
100 million LP's pressed by just 35 or so plants worldwide... 1 in 7 of those 43.2 million in the USA were Taylor Swift albums pressed on cheap colored vinyl LOL (I think the world can do without those)... future plant pots 20 years from now?
Consumers are complaining that around 80% of the records that they buy new are unplayable, with serious manufacturing defects and excessive surface noise. That sounds like about what I experienced in the late 70's (warped LP's fresh from the store were very common too).
 
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Indeed, that's what I pointed out, after 120 years we are going back to electric cars once more.

"And server farms are far from environmentally friendly"... I did point that out too!

Ironically vinyl purists have always been about heavyweight 'virgin' vinyl as being essential for good quality pressings but two of the so called 'green' LP pressing plants in the Netherlands use 'some' recycled PVC pellets (from batches of bad pressings that they produce) or polyethylene terephthalate.
How good is this for the quality of the records pressed?

Funny... if LP's made out of PET end up in the US they will need to carry the California Prop. 65 label: "this product contains chemicals know to the State of California to cause cancer, birth defects or other reproductive harm"


Indeed... not dead.
100 million LP's pressed by just 35 or so plants worldwide... 1 in 7 of those 43.2 million in the USA were Taylor Swift albums pressed on cheap colored vinyl LOL (I think the world can do without those)... future plant pots 20 years from now?
Consumers are complaining that around 80% of the records that they buy new are unplayable, with serious manufacturing defects and excessive surface noise. That sounds like about what I experienced in the late 70's (warped LP's fresh from the store were very common too).
I'd like to know where those 'consumers ' are buying their vinyl as most new vinyl I buy is some of the best pressed I have ever had.. And my vinyl buying days go back to the late 1960's, that said I am very selective as to where my money goes.
 

My2Cents

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I'd like to know where those 'consumers ' are buying their vinyl as most new vinyl I buy is some of the best pressed I have ever had.. And my vinyl buying days go back to the late 1960's, that said I am very selective as to where my money goes.
In the US most people are buying their top 20 'pop' LP's from Amazon, Target, Walmart, Barnes and Noble etc.
However, I'm sure that you are not in the market for Taylor Swift, Lana Del Ray, Beyoncé or Harry Styles!
Last year Taylor Swift was the worlds top selling vinyl artist and shifted over 1.7 million vinyl copies worldwide.
Most of the 'fans' are quite happy to pay $45 for an album and then play them on a $65 Crosley Cruiser.

Of course the Dark Side of the Moon, Rumours and Queens Greatest Hits are all still selling well and in the top 20 sales.

As there is a huge demand for pressing plants, Indie artists (who started the vinyl resurgence) now have to wait over 12 months to try to get small runs pressed (if they can at all), it's just become a big business dominated by the top artists (to make more money... the money they never got from streaming)!

The Memphis Record Pressing Co. is one of the big pressing plants in the USA, after a $28.8 million expansion a couple of years ago they can now produce about 125,000 copies a day.
I'm sure quality labels putting out jazz and classical music are far more concerned about quality and choosy about where the LP's are pressed.
 

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In the US most people are buying their top 20 'pop' LP's from Amazon, Target, Walmart, Barnes and Noble etc.
However, I'm sure that you are not in the market for Taylor Swift, Lana Del Ray, Beyoncé or Harry Styles!
Last year Taylor Swift was the worlds top selling vinyl artist and shifted over 1.7 million vinyl copies worldwide.
Most of the 'fans' are quite happy to pay $45 for an album and then play them on a $65 Crosley Cruiser.

Of course the Dark Side of the Moon, Rumours and Queens Greatest Hits are all still selling well and in the top 20 sales.

As there is a huge demand for pressing plants, Indie artists (who started the vinyl resurgence) now have to wait over 12 months to try to get small runs pressed (if they can at all), it's just become a big business dominated by the top artists (to make more money... the money they never got from streaming)!

The Memphis Record Pressing Co. is one of the big pressing plants in the USA, after a $28.8 million expansion a couple of years ago they can now produce about 125,000 copies a day.
I'm sure quality labels putting out jazz and classical music are far more concerned about quality and choosy about where the LP's are pressed.
Paying that much only to destroy them on a Crosley can only explain the resurgence..... :)
 
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My2Cents

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Not a fad and if people are willing to buy physical product and support artists that can't be a bad thing. It may also get people back to cd too...
Buying LP's at gigs to support Indie artists is great and only helps to diversify music and keep it creative (the old Musicians Union slogan 'keep music live' comes to mind).
But the opposite is happening here, it's just supporting an industry that manufactures a junk highly formulated and regurgitated 'product' that exists simply to create $$'s for the record corporations (and a very very select few artists) to get rich off.
The intro. to 'Tubthumping' comes to mind... "The truth is, I thought it mattered, I thought the music mattered... but does it b...."
Hey... can 7 out of 8 billion people be wrong? well... YES!
 
Buying LP's at gigs to support Indie artists is great and only helps to diversify music and keep it creative (the old Musicians Union slogan 'keep music live' comes to mind).
But the opposite is happening here, it's just supporting an industry that manufactures a junk highly formulated and regurgitated 'product' that exists simply to create $$'s for the record corporations (and a very very select few artists) to get rich off.
The intro. to 'Tubthumping' comes to mind... "The truth is, I thought it mattered, I thought the music mattered... but does it b...."
Hey... can 7 out of 8 billion people be wrong? well... YES!
That's certainly debatable....
 

Friesiansam

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Vinyl is here to stay and so is CD but what I don't understand is why would anyone want to resurrect a dead format like Tape Cassette that is defo a fad it was never any good in the first place and It should stay DEAD.
I started off with pre-recorded cassettes in my mid teens and, remembering what they were like, it boggles my mind that anyone would want to resurrect them. They were indeed dire.

BTW, I still buy CDs and will continue to do so.
 
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speedthing

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Me to like CD's a lot but love Vinyl its my absolute fave medium I still buy vinyl by the lorry load and I still buy CD's. Oh and just a thought on dead formats im pretty sure a friend of mine had a Mini Disc hifi separate that fad never lasted long LOL.
 
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record_spot

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Going by the crowd that was in Thorne Records in Edinburgh today, and the fact that they'd had a Record Store Day queue for about 17 hours solid up till around 2pm suggests not! I popped up later hoping the queues had gone, but was in at the tail end.

Didn't buy an RSD release - the only one I was vaguely interested was the Talking Heads 1978 live set (all gone!) - but did pick up a copy of, appropriately, David Byrne's American Utopia and Joni's Hejira, which I haven't had on LP for over 40 years. Seemed like a good day to pick it up!

On Friday, I had to return my old work laptop up in Dundee, and decided to make a trip up to Montrose to Mo'Fidelity Records. They're not doing too badly either - lovely new premises, fantastic stock, new / old, mostly vinyl, but some other formats. A real pleasure as the five LPs I left with (and £77 poorer) attest to. Well worth the 250 mile round trip too!
 
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