Is the resurgence of vinyl LP's a fad?

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podknocker

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You're right. For me CDs and other digital formats have perhaps more detail but for realism or presence vinyl is hard to beat. It sounds more natural and that's why it's been a keeper over so many decades, warts and all....
Surely, CD having more detail is closer to the recording and gives you more realism? If you are closer to the recording, there is more realism and therefore would sound more natural. Vinyl is further away from the original recording than CD, hence gives you a LESS natural reproduction. To state vinyl gives you more of what the artist intended, when it's less detailed, seems to be a contradiction. Also, the 'warts and all' you mention, were not intended to be part of the recording when laid down in the recording studio. Vinyl removes musical information and adds surface noise and distortion. CD does neither. CD DOES reveal limitations of poor recordings and will provide 'warts and all' if they are there in the first place. I think many people dislike CD for this very reason. It will reproduce all the things people don't want to hear. This is 'warts and all' and it's part of the recording, whether it's desirable or not. Perhaps people should be listening to better recordings on CD, rather than pretend their vinyl is giving them an authentic musical reproduction or experience. Also, I don't hate vinyl, or those still using this format, I just insist CD and newer formats sound better, because they do, regardless of vinyl still being supported and purchased for whatever reason. I do respect people's choice when it comes to vinyl, but I don't respect views of people who think an ancient format could still compete with state of the art recording equipment and the accuracy and resolution of modern formats. There is no right answer, when it comes to people's choice of format, but there is a right answer when it comes to which format gives you the most accurate and authentic reproduction of a recording. Copying a state of the art recording made yesterday, onto a digital platform, will get you closer than transferring this information onto vinyl. I've heard decent vinyl systems and they sounded great, but the most expensive TTs can't compete with the most expensive digital systems. There is also the convenience of digital systems to take into account, but as revealed time and time again on this forum, this is not relevant or important to many music lovers.
 
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Leon74

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I think it is a fad.
The younger generations grew up with bad sound: low quality mp3, streaming etc and bad equipment in general. Being older now they begin to discover much better sound is possible. Add to that the given that people want to "own" things and a vinyl record is much bigger than a cd, so more impressive and the fact that you can "see" a record play and a cd not, I can understand how the fad came about.
Most of my generation (1974) still appreciate the advantages of the CD I am sure, even if they too can get scratches and for 1 out of 10 there might be a very tiny sound difference.
 
Surely, CD having more detail is closer to the recording and gives you more realism? If you are closer to the recording, there is more realism and therefore would sound more natural. Vinyl is further away from the original recording than CD, hence gives you a LESS natural reproduction. To state vinyl gives you more of what the artist intended, when it's less detailed, seems to be a contradiction. Also, the 'warts and all' you mention, were not intended to be part of the recording when laid down in the recording studio. Vinyl removes musical information and adds surface noise and distortion. CD does neither. CD DOES reveal limitations of poor recordings and will provide 'warts and all' if they are there in the first place. I think many people dislike CD for this very reason. It will reproduce all the things people don't want to hear. This is 'warts and all' and it's part of the recording, whether it's desirable or not. Perhaps people should be listening to better recordings on CD, rather than pretend their vinyl is giving them an authentic musical reproduction or experience. Also, I don't hate vinyl, or those still using this format, I just insist CD and newer formats sound better, because they do, regardless of vinyl still being supported and purchased for whatever reason. I do respect people's choice when it comes to vinyl, but I don't respect views of people who think an ancient format could still compete with state of the art recording equipment and the accuracy and resolution of modern formats. There is no right answer, when it comes to people's choice of format, but there is a right answer when it comes to which format gives you the most accurate and authentic reproduction of a recording. Copying a state of the art recording made yesterday, onto a digital platform, will get you closer than transferring this information onto vinyl. I've heard decent vinyl systems and they sounded great, but the most expensive TTs can't compete with the most expensive digital systems. There is also the convenience of digital systems to take into account, but as revealed time and time again on this forum, this is not relevant or important to many music lovers.
I understand what PP means.
 
Surely, CD having more detail is closer to the recording and gives you more realism? If you are closer to the recording, there is more realism and therefore would sound more natural. Vinyl is further away from the original recording than CD, hence gives you a LESS natural reproduction. To state vinyl gives you more of what the artist intended, when it's less detailed, seems to be a contradiction. Also, the 'warts and all' you mention, were not intended to be part of the recording when laid down in the recording studio. Vinyl removes musical information and adds surface noise and distortion. CD does neither. CD DOES reveal limitations of poor recordings and will provide 'warts and all' if they are there in the first place. I think many people dislike CD for this very reason. It will reproduce all the things people don't want to hear. This is 'warts and all' and it's part of the recording, whether it's desirable or not. Perhaps people should be listening to better recordings on CD, rather than pretend their vinyl is giving them an authentic musical reproduction or experience. Also, I don't hate vinyl, or those still using this format, I just insist CD and newer formats sound better, because they do, regardless of vinyl still being supported and purchased for whatever reason. I do respect people's choice when it comes to vinyl, but I don't respect views of people who think an ancient format could still compete with state of the art recording equipment and the accuracy and resolution of modern formats. There is no right answer, when it comes to people's choice of format, but there is a right answer when it comes to which format gives you the most accurate and authentic reproduction of a recording. Copying a state of the art recording made yesterday, onto a digital platform, will get you closer than transferring this information onto vinyl. I've heard decent vinyl systems and they sounded great, but the most expensive TTs can't compete with the most expensive digital systems. There is also the convenience of digital systems to take into account, but as revealed time and time again on this forum, this is not relevant or important to many music lovers.
No, more detail doesn't equate to realism. I have two albums on both formats (Joan Armatrading's 'Whatever's For Us' first album) and the vinyl pressing makes the hairs stand up while the CD version doesn't. And it wasn't on a cheap label or remastered.

I usually find remastered CDs can sound 2 dimensional and cold sounding.
 

Jasonovich

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I've kind of moved on from CD v Vinyl and fully embraced DSD.
Rock' on, Excellent! Keanu Reeves strums the guitar.

It's just a shame, isn't widely adopted as FLAC.
Glad we're not discussing cables (!), to my ears it has all the magic of vinyl and the transparency of CD.

DSD has a more straightforward signal structure than PCM audio, it requires less processing to convert the digital signal to analogue sound. That can result in a cleaner and more natural sound quality, with fewer digital artefacts and distortion. Also DSD captures a much wider range of frequencies and thus able to produce more detail than other digital audio formats.

From my extensive listening to DSD and when I compare this to other formats, I feel the construction of sound to be more lifelike and provides for me a realistic listening experience. That is especially important for audiophiles (er, don't use that word), music lovers (eee eee I'm a lover not a fighter eee eee, sorry) who want the best sound quality in their music playback systems.

There are pros and cons in all digital mediums, DSD produces far more noise, and requires special filtering, maybe that just adds to the ambience and depth?
 
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DCarmi

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I've kind of moved on from CD v Vinyl and fully embraced DSD.
The only issue I have with digital music files, is the lack of a physical thing. I, personally, like to see and hold a disc (or at least its cover). Funnily enough, I don't feel the same about books, where I prefer the convenience of Kindle.

I guess collecting CD and LP is probably a thing for me. Storage would probably be easier if it were stamps!
 
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Leon74

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The only issue I have with digital music files, is the lack of a physical thing. I, personally, like to see and hold a disc (or at least its cover). Funnily enough, I don't feel the same about books, where I prefer the convenience of Kindle.

I guess collecting CD and LP is probably a thing for me. Storage would probably be easier if it were stamps!
Same here. I think for me the difference with books is that you listen to music more than once usually and therefore the physical form has more "value". Novels most people read only once and they then lose their value for most people. With reference books it is different, I want them in physical form, too.
 
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manicm

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As someone who listens to a wide range of music, DSD is limiting. It's a niche format. Which is why I'm still keen on investigating MQA as a streaming format, and to a lesser extent Dolby Atmos - which would depend entirely on how far I travel on a soundbar + surround speakers route. If you read the recent WHF piece on Dolby Atmos, it seems they compress the music less.

Coming back to DSD, as I said it's too niche for me, but there are streamers/DACs/CD players which can convert PCM to DSD, with great results. But it's also to taste sometimes.

To high-res - well there was a good piece that stated for true high-res playback, your speakers and amp need to extend beyond 30khz frequency response - there are fewer amps than speakers that can achieve this, believe it or not.

To vinyl - I probably would get a turntable for archive purposes - my late father has left a collection of LPs which includes many rare recordings. But for regular listening the cartridge replacement and adjustments are giving me minor headaches. I will never go back to a manual car unless I can afford a nice new Porsche for weekend blasts.

But for me and music, Dolby Atmos/surround appeals more than anything beyond CD quality audio. As a time/space investment I see it as more practical too.

Everything depends on circumstances though.
 

speedthing

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I don't think you can say its a fad when its never really been away. And some of us are collectors first and Audiophiles second a lot of the suff I listen to and collect has never been put on CD.
 

Leon74

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From an interesting article:

"
Continuing one of the more surprising comebacks of the digital age, vinyl album sales in the United States have grown for the 17th consecutive year in 2023. According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), 43.2 million EPs/LPs were sold in the U.S. last year, up from less than a million in 2006, when the vinyl comeback began.

So how big is vinyl's comeback really? Should we all dust off our old record players to prepare for the analog future of music? Vinyl LPs accounted for more than 40 percent of album sales in the United States last year, which is quite substantial. Factoring in streaming and downloads of single tracks, however, that number drops to less than 5 percent of album equivalent music consumption, which puts things in perspective. According to RIAA, vinyl records accounted for 8 percent of record music revenues in the U.S. last year, as streaming continues to be the industry's biggest moneymaker by far. Moreover, as our chart illustrates, vinyl is still far away from its glory days in the 1970s, when more than 300 million LPs and EPs would be sold in a single year.

However big or small the impact of rising LP sales on the music industry’s bottom line may be, it’s fascinating to witness a hundred year-old technology come back from near extinction. Physical goods, it appears, still hold value for many people, even in the digital age. Interestingly, vinyl LPs appear to have become a bit of collectors' item for fans, who listen to music digitally but still want to own a physical object: according to Luminate, only 50 percent of vinyl buyers actually have a record player."


Typically a fad I would say.
 

Leon74

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To high-res - well there was a good piece that stated for true high-res playback, your speakers and amp need to extend beyond 30khz frequency response - there are fewer amps than speakers that can achieve this, believe it or not.
A month ago I started a subscription with Presto Classical. I noticed that a "side-effect" of high-res is that the music is often better recorded. Even if I only have the means to play back at CD quality, that is an advantage.
 

manicm

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sser extent Dolby Atmos - which would depend entirely on how far I travel on a soundbar + surround speakers route

A month ago I started a subscription with Presto Classical. I noticed that a "side-effect" of high-res is that the music is often better recorded. Even if I only have the means to play back at CD quality, that is an advantage.
That is true.
 
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Gray

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....the music is often better recorded. Even if I only have the means to play back at CD quality, that is an advantage.
You're not kidding it's an advantage!
The recording quality is always more relevant than the playback format.

Quality of recording / mixing / tonal balance makes the difference between pleasure and pain.....(decent) playback formats don't have such differences between them.
 
There are plenty of hi-res and by that I mean DSD download sites that pride themselves on the quality of their recordings and, in fact, need them to be exceptional to survive.
Blue Coast Music is one such site that I have purchased from. Excellent quality all round as many albums recorded direct to DSD.
It's a bit like the smaller LP issuers like Chasing the Dragon that really go for quality over quantity.
Yes, you pay for it but it's better than buying a duff mainstream recording, in my view.
 
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podknocker

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Well said. I'd rather listen to well recorded music on tape than to badly recorded music in the best format possible.
Badly recorded music on the best format isn't the best format's fault. CD/SACD sounds better than anything else, IF the recording and mastering are treated with care. You can't get the same amount of detail from an old format, all things being equal. I feel people are missing the point with high res formats. The potential sound quality exceeds that of vinyl and tapes, IF it's a good recording. LPs and tapes and all the old stuff can't come close to modern formats, with good quality recordings and care when mastering. Modern formats, from CD onwards, sound better with the same quality recordings. If nobody cares about the sound quality transferred to CD, it doesn't mean LPs have inherintly better sound quality. Why is this so difficult for people to understand? The potential sound quality of CD or SACD far exceeds that of vinyl or tapes, IF care is taken with recording and mastering. It amuses me how people still think Sony and Philips spent millions on R&D to release a format with inferior sound quality to some ancient format. This didn't happen by the way. CD and SACD are capable of reproducing music with more accuracy than LPs or tapes. If it's a bad recording, or mastering, when transferring music to a CD or SACD, that's NOT the format's fault or shortcoming. Many people are still fixated with the old stuff and I still don't understand why.
 
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