We're engaged in idle speculation. If you want facts, talk to the folks at United. I have no
"hidden" facts to share. If you do find out some facts, please do share. I too am very interested in
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "H D Goldman" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 10:49 AM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Wax & Wane: the Tough Realities Behind Vinyl's Comeback
> Hi Tom,
> I'm still puzzled. The fellas I know at Acoustic Sound told me that there were no pressing plant
> parts of merit to them available in the US after those they purchased. Perhaps I heard
> incorrectly but my impression was that after they purchased additional presses & boilers from
> Europe, there was little that remained there as well.
> Hence my question. I'm surely not going to be unhappy with the production of more vinyl records
> ;>). Guess it makes sense if you look at low-mid priced turntable sales the past few years. The
> numbers are impressive, at least to me, for a dead format.
> Happy listening,
> H D Goldman Lagniappe Chemicals Ltd.
> PO Box 37066 St. Louis, MO 63141 USA
> v/f 314 205 1388 [log in to unmask]
> On Aug 5, 2014, at 6:05 AM, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>> Hi Duane:
>> No idea. I assume United is buying mothballed presses from some former plant. Apparently, not so
>> many old vinyl presses got scrapped. I'm guessing that at least half of what existed circa 1980
>> still exists in one form or another. I would think, if you owned a plant like United or even
>> Chad's or RTI, you need a lot of spare parts, so there must be many parts donors out there.
>> Something like Ampex 300 tape machines -- not that many restored to front-line every-day
>> usability, but lots of parts donors still out there. I don't know any of this for a fact.
>> Just sayin' ... someone with a bit of journalist in them (ie report just facts, verify facts,
>> etc) could do an interesting little piece for ARSC Journal about the current state of vinyl. Who
>> are the players? What equipment are they using? Why are things like colored discs able to be made
>> better nowadays (remember how horrible picture discs sounded back in the day?)? How does a
>> typical plant work nowadays, and could an old-timer contrast that with vinyl mass-media heyday
>> workflows? What do the plant owners think about vinyl as an artifact vs a high-fidelity medium (I
>> bet Chad Kassem would answer this very differently from the guys at United)? Do the press owners
>> see a plateau to the vinyl trend (fad or continual upward trend?)? If anyone gets interested in
>> the topic, I have a few-years-old list of all the vinyl plants I could verify were operating at
>> the time (circa 2012). I would definitely read this article if it were well-reported, but I do
>> not have time to do this kind of thing for no pay.
>> -- Tom Fine
>> ----- Original Message ----- From: "H D Goldman" <[log in to unmask]>
>> To: <[log in to unmask]>
>> Sent: Tuesday, August 05, 2014 12:50 AM
>> Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Wax & Wane: the Tough Realities Behind Vinyl's Comeback
>>> Hi Tom,
>>> Being familiar with the effort it took Chad to locate the presses he has, where are these "new"
>>> units coming from?
>>> Duane Goldman
>>> H D Goldman Lagniappe Chemicals Ltd.
>>> PO Box 37066 St. Louis, MO 63141 USA
>>> v/f 314 205 1388 [log in to unmask]
>>> On Aug 4, 2014, at 7:44 PM, Tom Fine <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
>>>> Three observations, both one man's opinions ...
>>>> 1. If United goes through on their plan to add 16 presses, others would be foolish to expand
>>>> for the time being. My bet is, 16 new presses at a high-output place like United will be enough
>>>> capacity for now. The article also neglected to mention Chad Kassem's state of the art new
>>>> pressing facility in Kansas. I think Chad custom-build enough presses to do at least what Gotta
>>>> Groove does per day.
>>>> 2. Chad told me that it's tricky, but colored vinyl can now be done so it doesn't sound any
>>>> worse than black vinyl. I have to say that the Record Store Day colored vinyl release of Velvet
>>>> Underground "Loaded" didn't sound any worse than the CD from which it was mastered.
>>>> 3. The article does a good job enumerating the "art" aspects of pressing records. Ambient
>>>> humidity, press temperature, the consistency of the water heating system, etc, all play major
>>>> roles in quality. Also, operator care with pressing cycles, centering of labels, etc. The
>>>> article did not touch on what is needed to MASTER a good LP record. Too many new-issue vinyl
>>>> releases are made from toothpaste-compressed masters the same as the CD and/or download
>>>> releases. These sound particularly bad on vinyl because of the nature of mechanical mastering
>>>> and playback. It's also odd that the Cleveland place is doing so much work for ambient and
>>>> minimalist artists. Those genres benefit the most from digital technology -- super-quiet
>>>> backgrounds behind the subtle soundscapes. I suspect the vinyl releases are driven by
>>>> artifact-hunting and general hipsterism.
>>>> One other thing -- the article failed to mention that there are at least two large-scale
>>>> pressing plants in Europe. The biggest one, in Germany, has been block-booked by UMG twice in
>>>> recent years for the massive production cycles associated with Beatles box sets. I suspect this
>>>> has a bearing on the long lead times at US plants.
>>>> -- Tom Fine