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Topic: "Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special" (Read 4320 times) previous topic - next topic

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  • ExUser
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
http://www.humansinvent.com/#!/9564/be...nyl-so-special/

This was reposted on Boing Boing.

Ugh. Not again... The same tired subjectivist tropes: Talk to "authorities" instead of doing science.

  • mzil
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #1
I'm waiting for 8-track to make a come back so I  can wedge all the paper match books I've been collecting into the sides of the transport slot to tweak the azimuth. I miss all the saturation and harmonics of the 70's sound. [That and Doubly noise reduction.]

"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #2
This quote from the article threw me:
"...there is one format that attracts fanatical devotion above and beyond any other– vinyl. For over a century, music lovers have held it dear..."

Vinyl records in 1912?  I'm rather skeptical.


Woody

  • mzil
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #3
Vinyl records in 1912?  I'm rather skeptical.


Woody

Well there were flat rotating mono records of various materials, speeds, and sizes, even going back to before 1900, but if you insist on the first 33 1/3 rpm, stereo (45/45 or Westrex  system), 12 inch, RIAA equalized, LP made from "vinyl" material (as opposed to lacquer, shellac, hard rubber, celluloid, wax, etc), the system "we" still use, then the first one was put out by Bel Canto in 1957. Hear it here:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iAjM7HqQXFM

I suspect when the article said "vinyl" what they really meant was "flat round discs read by a needle", as opposed to Edison's wax cylinders which were too bulky,  but coexisted for some time until they got phased out in the 1920/30's.

There were some flat, round records made of vinyl in the 1930s but the material was considered too expensive at the time and production was stopped in preference to less expensive materials. It was reintroduced decades later.
  • Last Edit: 11 November, 2012, 12:03:34 AM by mzil

  • Kohlrabi
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #4
The good thing about these articles is that you get an idea which recording/mastering engineers to avoid in the future.
  • Last Edit: 11 November, 2012, 02:33:14 AM by Kohlrabi
It's only audiophile if it's inconvenient.

  • Porcus
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #5
I thought the tech that made 'vinyl' largely so special as an end-user format, was the standardization of speed, center hole, stylus compatibility and ultimately the introduction of stereo?

"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #6
The good thing about these articles is that you get an idea which recording/mastering engineers to avoid in the future.
IME they should be judged on what comes out of the speakers.

  • Kohlrabi
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #7
The good thing about these articles is that you get an idea which recording/mastering engineers to avoid in the future.
IME they should be judged on what comes out of the speakers.
In the past the interviews with Masterdisk engineers have shown that misconceptions about digital audio are highly correlated with bad mastering practices. Fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me.
  • Last Edit: 11 November, 2012, 07:32:51 AM by Kohlrabi
It's only audiophile if it's inconvenient.

  • dhromed
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #8
I thought the tech that made 'vinyl' largely so special as an end-user format, was the standardization of speed, center hole, stylus compatibility and ultimately the introduction of stereo?


You've been misinformed. It's the unmistakable near-magical properties of analog (re)production.

Few people know this, but all vinyl is in fact produced by multidimensional cutters that exist partially in cabali-yau spaces and use a specially transformed Julia fractal superimposed on the quantum foam at planck lengths to inscribe infinite audio resomolutions onto that revered plastic pancake. Before this step takes place, the original waveform is quantumchromodynamically mixed with the brainwaves of a child playing, a loving couple, the harmonics of all organisms in a healthy ecosystem, friendship, and a single pleasant dream. This adds the warmth and life to the recording.

  • Porcus
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #9
This adds the warmth and life to the recording.


Aha. So the devil^wangel is in the recording process, not in the playback process. Thanks for setting the matters straight.

  • Dynamic
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #10
Where's the 'like' button when you want one! Nice one dhromed.
  • Last Edit: 11 November, 2012, 01:51:07 PM by Dynamic
Dynamic – the artist formerly known as DickD

  • Batman321
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #11
I thought the tech that made 'vinyl' largely so special as an end-user format, was the standardization of speed, center hole, stylus compatibility and ultimately the introduction of stereo?


You've been misinformed. It's the unmistakable near-magical properties of analog (re)production.

Few people know this, but all vinyl is in fact produced by multidimensional cutters that exist partially in cabali-yau spaces and use a specially transformed Julia fractal superimposed on the quantum foam at planck lengths to inscribe infinite audio resomolutions onto that revered plastic pancake. Before this step takes place, the original waveform is quantumchromodynamically mixed with the brainwaves of a child playing, a loving couple, the harmonics of all organisms in a healthy ecosystem, friendship, and a single pleasant dream. This adds the warmth and life to the recording.



   

  • Porcus
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #12
I still can't get out of my head the image of the fractal surface of the vinyl, and the wizard grinning “digitize THIS if you can!”.

"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #13
The thing that makes a lot of vinyl special to me is subjective. I don't see anything wrong with that.

I don't personally like to sit and think about science while I'm enjoying a good record, CD, or even lossy encode. While I know plenty who would marvel over a great LP collection, I don't know anyone personally who would care if I said "dude, you should check out my massive CD collection!" My massive CD collection now resides on a 3 Tb HDD with cue sheets and cover scans and vinyl is worth far more from a collector's perspective.

People love vinyl...it is what it is. Often they are irrational about why they like it but it doesn't really matter. This sort of behavior can observed in nearly every other aspect of life regarding material possessions. (Just look at all the threads on the 'net full of dumbasses arguing over their favorite smartphones or chosen OSes.)

That said, there is a place for scientific refutation and good old fashioned sarcasm when people, purporting to be experts, make ridiculous claims. That's why I like to read these posts here even though I"m obsessed with collecting and listening to good vinyl.
The Loudness War is over. Now it's a hopeless occupation.

  • hawkeye_p
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #14
Where's the 'like' button when you want one! Nice one dhromed.

+1 from me.

dhromed made my day.

  • knutinh
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #15
That said, there is a place for scientific refutation and good old fashioned sarcasm when people, purporting to be experts, make ridiculous claims. That's why I like to read these posts here even though I"m obsessed with collecting and listening to good vinyl.

I don't think that anyone objects to the personal, subjective, sensualist experiences that some people have with certain art and technology. The annoyance starts to creep in when people elevate their personal anecdotal experiences along with their own dubious physical explanations to hard scientific facts.

I think it is perfectly ok to believe in angels and fairy-dust and homeopathy. I cant prove that any of it is positively "false". What I do object to is people claiming that their religion is "proven" or "sensible" in any scientific sense, or trying to sell their snake-oil to people using dubious unsupported claims.

-k

  • Nessuno
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #16
Few people know this, but all vinyl is in fact produced by multidimensional cutters that exist partially in cabali-yau spaces
[...]
This adds the warmth and life to the recording.

All this can be easily reproduced in the digital domain by a new class of DSPs with a multicore singleton-identities philosophic coprocessor (the INTEL "Symposium" family), at a cost of a little increase in jitter, which can be then minimized using neutrine-ready quantical signal cables (Van den Hul "Gran Sasso" (*)) .

(*) For non italian readers, see here.
... I live by long distance.

  • 2Bdecided
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #17
I think the only thing this proves (and I prove it to myself most weeks!) is how much our enjoyment of recorded music is bound up in our mood and expectations. For most people, objective sound quality plays such a small part compared with where they are, who they are with, what they are doing and thinking etc etc.

So many "authorities" are now saying vinyl is great that people buying in to it will love the sound because they're expecting to. IMO good vinyl is more than good enough (objectively) for most music - but even people playing worn records on poor turntables will emotionally buy into and love the experience.


Luckily I've convinced myself that my Sansa Clip is the best music reproduction device ever, so I get the same buzz from listening to that

Cheers,
David.

  • Nessuno
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"Behind the tech that makes vinyl so special"
Reply #18
So many "authorities" are now saying vinyl is great that people buying in to it will love the sound because they're expecting to.

Fine, as long as we agree that this has nothing (or very little) to do with objective accurate musical reproduction, just like buying expensive mechanical watches has nothing to do with accurately knowing what time it is, buying expensive fashion clothes with better protect yourself (and your woman! ) from bad weather and so on...

And fine also to me that there are people ready to throw large amounts of money in this subjective pursuit of perfection, as long as it doesn't become a social disease like betting, gambling, alcoholism...
... I live by long distance.