phillip holmes wrote:
> What kind of cartridge do you use? You could buy several different stylus
> tips to experiment with.
> Mono LPs were cut with a wider groove, so that a microgroove stylus will
> ride much further down in the groove than it should.
> I think that the old vinyl was a little noisier from the start (in my
> experience with mint records), but took much more abuse before becoming
> unplayable (compared to a Columbia or RCA from the '70s that had a much
> softer vinyl formulation and was thin and floppy).
I have a number of early Columbia test pressing LPs that are unbelievably quiet.
Don't know whether it was a better vinyl (similar to what they were using at the
time for transcription discs and the few vinyl 78 albums they put out around
1947) or if it was because they were pressed at an earlier processing stage than
what was doled out to the civilians.
> Cutting engineers for the audiophile labels like Classic Records try to
> limit the side to 17 minutes for the best fidelity. They cut louder than
> the old records with as big a groove as possible. That gives the best sound
> with the high end cartridges. If you play one of those with a junky
> cartridge, it may mistrack during loud passages. A good example of what can
> happen is with the first pressing on RCA of The Pines of Rome. It was cut
> without compression and bass summing making listener's cartridges literally
> jump out of the grooves. A modern cartridge like a Shure V15 tracks it
> without problem, but 40 years ago, a Shure M3D couldn't play it. So they
> pulled the 1S pressings they had left, re-cut it with bass summing and some
> compression and the 1S pressing became a one of a kind sonic spectacular
> that would fetch $400 easy. The louder cutting is harder to track but
> brings the music that much further above the noise floor of the vinyl, the
> stylus scraping the vinyl, the rumble of he bearing, any hum in the arm wire
> and RIAA circuit, and any other problems you may have with limitations to
> the playback chain. But you need a good cartridge.
Reminds me of the Rachmaninoff Third Symphony with Stokowski that Desmar put out
in the early 70s..which also was reissued with a more trackable groove.
> If you are playing mono records, I would suggest investing in a mono
> cartridge (true mono, not a stereo cartridge strapped to mono internally).
> I have the Denon dl102 and it makes hammered records play much better. It
> has a conical tip and it ignores any vertical information (the vertical
> noise on a mono record is only noise; the signal is the horizontal back and
> forth). Vertical noise is 30dB down from the horizontal signal. I played a
> hammered copy of Dial 203, Charlie Parker Quintet. I would grade it as
> Poor. With a modern cartridge, it was unlistenable. With the mono
> cartridge and proper EQ (another variable), it was still noisy, but you
> could make out the music much easier.
> The DL102 is described here:
There are many times you'll want to choose either side of the groove, which you
can't do with a mono cartridge. I use a receiver with a Dolby Pro Logic unit and
use its center channel output for the same effect..removes a lot of vertical
noise. Ian G. Masters wrote about this in his audio column in the Toronto Star
about 12 years ago as a means to get clean sound out of beat-up 45s..I
immediately got a JVC unit and found it did exactly what he said it would do and
was great for removing a lot of the rumble from laminated Columbia 78s.