Any source will be distorted by the cutting process, plating and pressing, not to mention the vinyl playback with imperfect phono cartridges (all transducers are imperfect - like loudspeakers, it's just a matter of degree).
Vinyl has many wonderful qualities, but accuracy is not one of them. A vinyl record that sounds like the source from which it was cut has never been made.
Digital audio had a lot of things wrong with it in the early days. But, digital audio has evolved to the point - indeed, it has been at that point for a long time - where there's absolutely no cause for complaint. With current digital technology, it's possible to make a transfer of your favorite analog source - whether that analog source is the output of a microphone preamp, or an analog tape - that's all but indistinguishable from the original.
I have some 4000 LPs, and I still enjoy playing them and building better mousetraps for playing them. A few months ago I even installed a new tonearm on my turntable. But, I think - I hope - that I have both feet planted firmly on the ground on this issue.
Audio Engineer Emeritus
The Crane School of Music
SUNY at Potsdam, NY 13676
"Great art presupposes the alert mind of the educated listener."
"A true artist doesn't want to be admired, he wants to be believed."
From: Association for Recorded Sound Discussion List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On Behalf Of Jamie Howarth
Sent: Monday, July 24, 2017 3:54 PM
To: [log in to unmask]
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] Vinyl Sales DOWN - why? See interesting WSJ article today
"Gary Galo wrote: "Thanks for sending that link - it looks like Michael Fremer's web site is the source of info for both articles.
Cutting vinyl from digital files is really the P.T. Barnum approach to selling records. Fortunately, there are reputable audiophile companies that are cutting records from original tapes. Analogue Productions is one of them, and there are others. It figures that the major record companies, who care about nothing other than the next cash cow, are the ones using digital masters. .... The whole rationale for vinyl lovers is to be able to hear their favorite recordings from the analog tape era on records made with the best possible disc cutting and pressing. I don't know any vinyl lovers who want records cut from all-digital sources. For them, the whole point is all-analog".
A digital rendition of an LP, ogg vorbised and distributed via YouTube as proof that the vinyl is superior is just stupifyingly bad reasoning. It does however prove that there's a tremendous amount of re-invention of the original material done by the vinyl process, and that digital (even compressed for streaming at lo-fi) is able to convey the modifications done to the original source by this massive mythological analog plug-in that is "vinyl".
"Cutting vinyl from digital files is really the P.T. Barnum approach to selling records".
And as much as I love Fremer, who's a really sweet guy, who loves audio and music --- he's the ringmaster of this circus.
A digital rendition of an LP, ogg vorbised and distributed via YouTube as proof that the vinyl is superior is just stupifyingly bad reasoning.
I can only pray that at some point people begin to realize that a digital source is massively distorted by the entire vinyl mastering/pressing process.... and that the same thing happens to an AAA release.
The digital rendition of the tape is better than the vinyl, and with the recent advances in time-base correction and better repro accuracy and transient response correction and simply the fact of sigma-delta converters of near-inaudible transparency a serious case can be made that the digital is better than the tape after some DSP work is done and that cutting vinyl from that is a superior vinyl.
But vinyl does NOT in itself constitute a highest-fidelity medium. Period full stop. And the focus should be on distributing better master tape digitizations than can be accomplished with a stock press-play on an unmodified 40 year old Ampex.
Custom solutions exist and are just drowned out by this retro-bs.
No. A vinyl playback does not match the tape. It can't. If it *improves it* then you like the mastering, and there's a business niche there. Do the same to the HD digital and you'll be providing the best fidelity on the market.
This is clearly a case where externalities have overrun common sense.
> On Jul 24, 2017, at 12:51 PM, Steve Ramm <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> _Why Vinyl’s Boom Is Over - WSJ_
> Steve Ramm