Vinyl compared to CD . . .

CJSF

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I said I would give my view comparing the two versions of 'Raising Sand' I have recently purchased.

Its been a few days since they arrived on my doorstep. I've been fiddling with the TT a lot, so was not inclined to listen to new material. Last night I finally relaxed, Horlicks time, put on the vinyl of Raising Sand, this is unusual for me, I usually play CDs at this time of night, but not always.

Hazel and I loved it, 2 records, 4 sides, 13 tracks, we listened to the lot! This morning we had breakfast in the music study, I put on the CD of Raising Sand. :? I like this . . . we like this . . . The big CD/vinyl debate says that should not be so . . . ?

So I set up a switching test, first thing the CD is slightly louder than the vinyl, so that made direct comparison difficult. There was a lower register that the CD was not producing, the mid-range had a warmer presentation on vinyl and the top end was a little more rolled off. These were differences of a very subtle order, predictable I would say. There was a slight feeling of extra detail in the vinyl . . . the most distinct observation was a subtle extra body in the vinyl that was not there on CD, but the CD has a crisp presentation that may will prefer.

Overall, my system is simple entry level, tweaked to give of its best (to my ears). At this level I'm going to put the vinyl ahead, just, because of the slight extra body. At a higher TT level . . . maybe better, perhaps the 2M Black will bring a little more out?

Which ever way, on which ever medium, its a superb recording, not the one to liven up a party!! but as a relax . . . two fingers up the glass or a nice mug of Horlicks, moody record, its perfect.

CJSF
 

Frank Harvey

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Which is more accurate? Vinyl doesn't exhibit that harsh treble edge that CD does, which probably makes the vinyl sound like its rolled off, which makes music far more listenable, and as we know, if any band of frequencies are exaggerated, detail will be lost in the surrounding frequencies. But for me, it's not so much the tonal difference between the two formats, it's the difference in soundstage. Generally, and this will depend on mastering, CD based systems tend to sound quite flat and sometimes lifeless, which isn't something you can normally accuse a vinyl based system of. The word 'musical' springs to mind for vinyl systems, and I know that's a word that digital fanatics tend to pounce on and ridicule, but for me, music on vinyl sounds much more like music, rather than a facsimile of music.

As an example, and I've used this before, back in the 90's I had Tears For Fears' album Sowing The Seeds Of Love on CD. I really liked the album, and played it to death, so knew it pretty well. I then bought a used copy from the local market for a couple of quid, and was stunned at how different the album sounded! There's a lot going on on some of the tracks, and the LP exhibited a three dimensional soundstage within which each of the instruments could be heard, rather than bunching them all together and making things a little messy which the CD did.

It'd be interesting to do that comparison again to see if that's still the case, as there's been a remastered CD copy produced in the meantime.
 

CJSF

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FrankHarveyHiFi said:
Which is more accurate? Vinyl doesn't exhibit that harsh treble edge that CD does, which probably makes the vinyl sound like its rolled off, which makes music far more listenable, and as we know, if any band of frequencies are exaggerated, detail will be lost in the surrounding frequencies. But for me, it's not so much the tonal difference between the two formats, it's the difference in soundstage. Generally, and this will depend on mastering, CD based systems tend to sound quite flat and sometimes lifeless, which isn't something you can normally accuse a vinyl based system of. The word 'musical' springs to mind for vinyl systems, and I know that's a word that digital fanatics tend to pounce on and ridicule, but for me, music on vinyl sounds much more like music, rather than a facsimile of music. As an example, and I've used this before, back in the 90's I had Tears For Fears' album Sowing The Seeds Of Love on CD. I really liked the album, and played it to death, so knew it pretty well. I then bought a used copy from the local market for a couple of quid, and was stunned at how different the album sounded! There's a lot going on on some of the tracks, and the LP exhibited a three dimensional soundstage within which each of the instruments could be heard, rather than bunching them all together and making things a little messy which the CD did. It'd be interesting to do that comparison again to see if that's still the case, as there's been a remastered CD copy produced in the meantime.

Interesting reply FH, I find the CD 'Raising Sands', extreemly good from a musical point of view. I wonder if the touch of legendary 'T-Bone Benett' has anything to do with it? I agree with you, and expected to find a flatter sound than I did. I have plenty of CD's I cant be bothered with because of the 'flat' and/or 'shouty' presentation. 'Raising Sands' is smooth and offers a 'want more' type musical sound in both mediums.

However as mentioned, my system is fairly simple, however see my post:

http://www.whathifi.com/forum/turntables-and-lps/ive-done-it

These findings might put the cat among the Vinyl v CD pigeons . . . raise the anti as they say? Yet to try the vinyl Raising Sand with this cartridge/stylus setup . . . it can only be good . . . ?????

CJSF
 

CnoEvil

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IMO If you carefully choose your TT (like R3), you have to spend substantially more to match with a CDP.

I started a thread (as yet no answers) which is related to this topic ie if a good percentage of your musical taste is stuck in the 70s (before digital age), how do you select the best version on CD (if there is one).

A lot of it can sound flat, one dimensional and uninteresting on CD, especially when compared to the original LP.
 

CnoEvil

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chebby said:
Digital mastering started before CDs came along. So there is a good chance that much of that cherished 'analogue' vinyl was cut from a digital master.

It's a valid point, but if memory serves (and it may not), digital mastering appeared in a limited way in the late 70s / early 80s, and a lot of the stuff I'm interested in is before that.
I think I'm right in saying that it was usually stated on the sleeve if digitally mastered.
 

altruistic.lemon

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Have to say that the best sounding LPs I heard back in the day when I was briefly flogging turntables were all digitally recorded and mastered - Dire Straits, Ry Cooder, and classics from DGG and Philips.
 

chebby

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CJSF said:
The big CD/vinyl debate says that should not be so . . . ?

The "big CD/vinyl debate" wasn't so big and only ever existed between a tiny minority of extremists/fanatics in their respective dug-outs.

By the time the World-Wide-Web allowed the debate to break out of the letters pages of a few magazines, it was all over anyway.

Everyone else just laughed at them, or ignored them or - for the most part - weren't even aware (and wouldn't care less) that there was a 'debate' at all.

Even now, the vast majority of people don't know (and don't care) that new LPs are still being made and that manufacturers of new turntables (beyond the sub £100 USB kind) are still thriving.*

(I should add that I am not on any 'side' of this so-called debate, and - until recently - enjoyed CDs, Vinyl, digital downloads/rips/streaming and FM radio fairly equally.)

*Although I am basing my use of 'thriving' mostly on the fortunes of Pro-ject and Rega. (Rega alone are selling 1500 turntables a month and Pro-ject sell 40,000 of their's per year!)
 

Charlie Jefferson

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A lot of us bought into the subjective view that CDs were better than vinyl. That old canard about "crystal clear sound" (whatever that was meant to be) was inexorably peddled when CDs first launched, and tried to establish itself over vinyl. More recently the same meaningless cliches were re-cycled when DAB radio was thrown onto the market.

I resisted CDs until the mid-90's when supply & demand for the vinyl I wanted seemed to be making my stance an increasingly Canute-style refutation of the inevitable adoption of the digital format.

I had a decade hiatus from vinyl as my main format for purchasing and listening to music, and in that interim period amassed a 2,500 CD collection. So I too bought, literally, into the CD camp.

I'm so glad I kept my vinyl (never in doubt really) and my NAD deck in good nick, and then made the upgrade to the Roksan Radius about 4 years ago. I'm glad 70% of my CDs are now in Lossless form on my Mac, and that vinyl has re-establsihed itself as my main listening format once more.

When I really want to listen to and savour a piece of music, it's vinyl I always turn to first, if it's available.

Incidentally, some of the "new" vinyl I've bought in the last few years ranks highly amongst the best sounding stuff I own:

Kraftwerk's 2009 remasters, Neil Young's first four album box set on 180g (2009), two Vinyl Factory editions of Pet Shop Boys' Yes and The Most Incredible Thing LPs, Lambchop's Is A Woman and Nixon LPs and the oft-sited Famous Blue Raincoat 3x45rpm version by Jennifer Warnes.
 

CJSF

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chebby said:
CJSF said:
The big CD/vinyl debate says that should not be so . . . ?

The "big CD/vinyl debate" wasn't so big and only ever existed between a tiny minority of extremists/fanatics in their respective dug-outs.

By the time the World-Wide-Web allowed the debate to break out of the letters pages of a few magazines, it was all over anyway.

Everyone else just laughed at them, or ignored them or - for the most part - weren't even aware (and wouldn't care less) that there was a 'debate' at all.

Even now, the vast majority of people don't know (and don't care) that new LPs are still being made and that manufacturers of new turntables (beyond the sub £100 USB kind) are still thriving.*

(I should add that I am not on any 'side' of this so-called debate, and - until recently - enjoyed CDs, Vinyl, digital downloads/rips/streaming and FM radio fairly equally.)

*Although I am basing my use of 'thriving' mostly on the fortunes of Pro-ject and Rega. (Rega alone are selling 1500 turntables a month and Pro-ject sell 40,000 of their's per year!)

The debate still rumbles on Chebby, its in these threads, there is a hifi (digital) section 'them' and the Turntable section 'us' . . . true, its not so gloves off as I remembered it, but its there. I have no axe to grind one way or the other . . . listening to all sorts. In fact my pleasure in the analogue side is in the tweaking as much as the listening and appreciation, takes me 'back when' . . . its a sense of satisfaction to get everything working right to produce the musical performance . . . isn't that what live music is all about, bring it all together to get the performance on the night?

One would like to see the old fashioned record shops reappear . . . that ain't going to happen . . . so a bit more organisation on the vinyl availability to service these 58,000 TT per year? I find it hard going digging into the online stores to flush out vinyl. Apart from Linn and Gimell, its hard work and you are buying blind . . . its like an £18 Lucky Bag . . . :?

CJSF
 

chebby

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CJSF said:
The debate still rumbles on Chebby, its in these threads, there is a hifi (digital) section 'them' and the Turntable section 'us'...

Oh dear. "Them and us"?

Drop the gloves sir.

I am getting a vision of one those Japanese soldiers still guarding a tiny island in the Pacific Ocean 40 years after World War 2 ended :) (Trying to shoot at distant cargo vessels taking thousands of Japanese hifis to the USA without him knowing.)
 

CJSF

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chebby said:
CJSF said:
The debate still rumbles on Chebby, its in these threads, there is a hifi (digital) section 'them' and the Turntable section 'us'...

Oh dear. "Them and us"?

Drop the gloves sir.

I am getting a vision of one those Japanese soldiers still guarding a tiny island in the Pacific Ocean 40 years after World War 2 ended :) (Trying to shoot at distant cargo vessels taking thousands of Japanese hifis to the USA without him knowing.)

Now, if they were CD players, that would be OK wouldn't it . . . ? 8)
 

The_Lhc

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CJSF said:
there is a hifi (digital) section 'them' and the Turntable section 'us'

And if you look closely it's largely the same people in both section. In fact it's largely the same people in every section of the forum, the number of active users here isn't so large.
 

CJSF

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I dont know what going on hear, all I did was give a comparison how I saw the same title on CD and vinyl. For whatever reason its turned into sniping match, for gods sake grow up!!!
 

The_Lhc

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CJSF said:
I dont know what going on hear, all I did was give a comparison how I saw the same title on CD and vinyl. For whatever reason its turned into sniping match, for gods sake grow up!!!

I think you're reading too much into people's comments, the same way you're reading too much into the CD/vinyl debate, which is all people are trying to tell you. You're also over-thinking everything far too much, for gods sake, give the analysis a rest and just listen to some damn music.
 

CJSF

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The_Lhc said:
CJSF said:
I dont know what going on hear, all I did was give a comparison how I saw the same title on CD and vinyl. For whatever reason its turned into sniping match, for gods sake grow up!!!

I think you're reading too much into people's comments, the same way you're reading too much into the CD/vinyl debate, which is all people are trying to tell you. You're also over-thinking everything far too much, for gods sake, give the analysis a rest and just listen to some damn music.

Whats the matter Lhc . . . cant keep up . . . at least I'm getting somewhere. I'll keep my thoughts to myself in future . . . :silenced:
 

Frank Harvey

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chebby said:
Even now, the vast majority of people don't know (and don't care) that new LPs are still being made and that manufacturers of new turntables (beyond the sub £100 USB kind) are still thriving.

While it might be a different story on our website, in store our biggest selling turntables at the moment are Michell (and I don't mean two per month either), and we sell very few TecnoDecs....

Turntables certainly are thriving at the moment, several decades after it really should've been "show over" for them. Looks like they're going to outlast the (almost) thirty year old CD, as well as all the other formats that have come and gone in he last fifty years! Hell, the GyroDec is the same age as CD!! :)
 

CJSF

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The_Lhc said:
CJSF said:
at least I'm getting somewhere.

You're getting further away from the point, which is the music, not the equipment.

As I have said Lhc . . . 'I know what I know' . . . Hazel and I spend hours listening to our music, 'Horlicks time' . . . my tweaking dont take that long, and in any case, I enjoy getting the 'best bang for my buck'!!! . . . 'that will do', will not do for me! Keep it all to myself in future . . . 8)

In any case, who are you to tell me what I must do and not do!!!!!!!!

CJSF
 
T

the record spot

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As someone who grew up listening to LPs for years and years before I got to CD, in the end, I simply found that CD was better for me. Sound-wise, it's easily the equal and mostly the better; there's more detail, accuracy and depth to the music I like. Vinyl is a pain, not least when moving house, so I recently got rid of the majority of my albums to the local Oxfam music store in Edinburgh. The last 100 or so I'll hang on to - some first press Bowie albums, one or two others, but nothing major.

Perhaps it's the distortion aspect inherent in vinyl that makes the underlying sound so appealing. The view that the "warmth" that people feel as being unique to vinyl (or "soul", "body", "depth", whatever) and the "coldness" of digital as some see it, is off the pace these days I think. Perhaps early CD players reflected this, but today, that simply doesn't bear out as so many manufacturers deliver hardware that is as far away from the cold/harsh characteristic most talk of as you can get.
 
T

the record spot

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FrankHarveyHiFi said:
chebby said:
Even now, the vast majority of people don't know (and don't care) that new LPs are still being made and that manufacturers of new turntables (beyond the sub £100 USB kind) are still thriving.

While it might be a different story on our website, in store our biggest selling turntables at the moment are Michell (and I don't mean two per month either), and we sell very few TecnoDecs....

Turntables certainly are thriving at the moment, several decades after it really should've been "show over" for them. Looks like they're going to outlast the (almost) thirty year old CD, as well as all the other formats that have come and gone in he last fifty years! Hell, the GyroDec is the same age as CD!! :)

Records and turntables have been going for a few decades more than digital replay, which outdates CD and as technology's improved, it's maybe no surprise that this has happened. The greater surprise is that the CD format lasted as long as it did!
 

DandyCobalt

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CJSF said:
Hazel and I loved it, 2 records, 4 sides, 13 tracks, we listened to the lot! This morning we had breakfast in the music study, I put on the CD of Raising Sand. :? I like this . . . we like this . . .

Getting back to the music, try the Mobile Fidelity vinyl of Alison Krauss and Union Station - " So Long So Wrong" .... makes you believe there's a god :)
 

CJSF

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chebby said:
CJSF said:
The big CD/vinyl debate says that should not be so . . . ?

The "big CD/vinyl debate" wasn't so big and only ever existed between a tiny minority of extremists/fanatics in their respective dug-outs.

By the time the World-Wide-Web allowed the debate to break out of the letters pages of a few magazines, it was all over anyway.

Everyone else just laughed at them, or ignored them or - for the most part - weren't even aware (and wouldn't care less) that there was a 'debate' at all.

Even now, the vast majority of people don't know (and don't care) that new LPs are still being made and that manufacturers of new turntables (beyond the sub £100 USB kind) are still thriving.*

(I should add that I am not on any 'side' of this so-called debate, and - until recently - enjoyed CDs, Vinyl, digital downloads/rips/streaming and FM radio fairly equally.)

*Although I am basing my use of 'thriving' mostly on the fortunes of Pro-ject and Rega. (Rega alone are selling 1500 turntables a month and Pro-ject sell 40,000 of their's per year!)

Hey Chebby, and you recon the CD v vinyl debate is not so big . . . hackles rise, on this site, and this was not a yar, boo thread, just a personal assessment of the same recording on my basic equipment via two different media.

CJSF
 

CJSF

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DandyCobalt said:
CJSF said:
Hazel and I loved it, 2 records, 4 sides, 13 tracks, we listened to the lot! This morning we had breakfast in the music study, I put on the CD of Raising Sand. :? I like this . . . we like this . . .

Getting back to the music, try the Mobile Fidelity vinyl of Alison Krauss and Union Station - " So Long So Wrong" .... makes you believe there's a god :)

Please, lets do that Dandy, thanks for the suggestion, I'll have a nose in the morning, I hear my bed calling . . .

CJSF
 

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