Red-pilled. Welcome to reality. And its just initial setup. Wait till its tweaked and dialed in. Nothing else will come even close. Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year!
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troutki50, It sounds like your digital side needs some work also. In my own experience it is about 50/50. I do download a lot of hi res files and everything is up sampled to 24/192. Having said that I have a brand new turntable on the way. A Sota Cosmos Vacuum with a Schroder CB arm and Soundsmith "The Voice" cartridge. I finally decided to try a Soundsmith as quite a few people like them and there are aspects to the design that make good sense. I have never seen a cantilever this thin and the quality of manufacture is first class. I may have to stop dissing Peter even if his office has been classified as a super fund site.
@troutki50 Congrats on your discoveries! Please let us know what your system make-up is. I have a lot invested into both my analog and my digital set-ups and can honestly say that the analog side is better, but my digital side is also amazing, so I would say that my enjoyment of analog is only about 10-20% more than digital. Digital is great for streaming and exploring new music, and for listening all day when you don't want to mess with flipping records. I use digital streaming to find records that I want to own.
One other thing, and this is not meant to dampen your enthusiasm, but you should be very careful about what you buy on vinyl if you want to get the highest level of enjoyment from it.
I have bought a lot of new vinyl that really doesn't sound that good. The best stuff is on proven labels that care about the source material and are transparent about the total chain of production. If a reissue doesn't have this info on the hype sticker or in the liner notes it's a pretty obvious sign that the vinyl issue might not be that great.
When I first started getting seriously back into vinyl (about 12 years ago) I just bought records assuming that they were better than the original pressings. I accumulated a lot of records that I didn't enjoy. Now I do the research very carefully before I buy, and this has made a huge difference.
@snackeyp My experiences are similar to yours and I use digital the same as you - mainly exploring for new material and when I have the music on in the background, more or less. I can't however quantify how much more I enjoy the vinyl over digital. The presentation is just so entirely different - with vinyl the music flows so freely like comparing pushing water through a 1-inch pipe (digital) to a free-flowing river (analog).
@three_easy I used to feel that way in comparing, but recently got a game changer of a DAC. Since then the digital realm sounds nearly as good as analog. I often forget that I'm listening to digital when I'm using it. But, yes, I can hear the superiority of vinyl in my system as well, just not as much as I used to.
Digital is more accurate. Vinyl is prone to distortions that we actually like. There is always a small amount of feedback that occurs with a turntable unless you have it in another room. The feed back is delayed slightly which creates a slight echo given a sense of space which is pleasing. This is just one example. Analog is also prone to more harmonic distortion some forms of which are pleasing.
It is all about what you like to listen to. Accuracy is meaningless in the end. Whether I prefer the vinyl or digital copy of an album depends more on the mastering than anything. To say one always sounds better than the other is rather short sighted. Remember 90% or better of modern recordings are digital. Once you are in numbers it is much harder to corrupt the music but with analog every single step adds distortion. It is why we love Direct to Disc recordings so much. Four or five steps are eliminated. If you are disappointed with digital get a Vacuum Tube DAC such as the Audio Research DAC 9. It will make digital files sound more analog.
Nice Dac Three Easy Payments. Never heard of it before so I checked out their web site.
I use a Tube phono stage and have thought about getting tube DACs but I would need two of them. Nobody that I know of makes a 4 channel DAC. The subwoofer cross overs are done digitally and my system is a 2.2 set up. 4 channels. I just pissed away all my Hi Fi money for the next year buying a new turntable and speakers so the DACs are on the rear burner. I also want to get a laser projector. It never ends.
I've gotten to the point where I just don't care if I'm listening to vinyl or digital. All I care about is putting on something I feel like listening to. Maybe I want to listen to some Tchaikovsky (I have a true weakness for the guy). Maybe I'll play one of my old Tchaikovsky LPs. I have many, some going back to the mono days. Maybe I'll take out a Tchaikovsky CD. Maybe I'll go to Qobuz or Primephonic and find a performance by artists I've never heard of. Then I'll put on some Bowie. It doesn't hurt that my audio system is flexible enough to give me quality sound from any format if the original recording is good enough. Then again, is it just because I have no ears? Or taste?
It's all in the DAC. Get a cheap dac and you will have mediocre sq from digital. IMO, you have to spend many times more on a vinyl setup than a good dac for vinyl to compare with digital. Check out the vinyl reviewers like Fremer, comparing their $300k vinyl setup to a $10k dac and he likes his vinyl better.
I still listen to my vinyl and enjoy it even more now with a restored Dual 1249 table and higher end Grado cartridge which I purchased separately this year. My solid state pre-amp has a mono switch and is pretty amazing when I play a mono record from the mid sixties vintage. It sounds really good, hard to believe it is mono. If I play a master recording in stereo it is the best sound there is. I like my digital setup for what it is. I don't have the money to upgrade it to the tube level yet. Merry Christmas everyone. Hope next near is better than this one!
I haven't listened to digital since I got my new table and phone stage - probaly 3 months now. My digital rig is an esoteric K-03 and an Aurender N-10 which sound incredible but I recently upgraded my vinyl rig to a JR TRanrotor Rodino, SME 5012 and an Allnic H-3000 Phono Stage and just can't go back to digital. The vinyl is just INSANELY good.
Once I got my vinyl setup, I quickly stopped listening to digital. I'm sure that there are digital systems that I would enjoy as well, but in my room and at my budget vinyl is far more enjoyable.
I also find that when I sit down to listen to vinyl, I focus on the music. I choose something that I really want to hear, and I play an entire album side. With digital, I find myself skipping songs, searching for other artists, listening to parts of songs, etc. After a digital listening session, I don't feel relaxed like I do after a vinyl session.
And finally, I love the ritual of taking out a record and cueing it up. I have no patience for downloading, streaming, etc. The last thing I want in my listening room is a computer. Reminds me too much of work.
Since I have converted to vinyl, I have been so much more connected to the music, and I look forward to every listening session.
Happy New Year to all!
I try to buy the cd and vinyl pressing of everything I can. I like having a tangible disc in both arenas. My analog rig is still new to me but I have been shooting out some newer Neil Young and the reissue of Wilco's Summerteeth. So far, I prefer the vinyl versions of most all of it. The digital is not far off though. Good stuff!
Vinyl - Technics SL-1200G w/ stock arm and Ortofon Quintet Black cartridge. Digital - Innous Zenith MKII, Matrix X-SPDIF, and PS Audio DirectStream DAC. I do more streaming these days because I’m getting too lazy to flip vinyl for an extended period. I prefer vinyl, but my digital rig sounds excellent as well.