Half Speed Mastering

I forgot how amazing half speed mastered records sound. I only have 1 that I listened to after a long time today. Everything we love about analog, but more of it! Wish I had more.


What label and what title is it?

Be careful what you wish for. Half-speed mastering is but one in a long list of items that can give improved sound quality. Fleetwood Mac Rumours is one of my all-time favorites. I bought the original vintage LP, and then later the Nautilus Half Speed Mastered. For years could not understand why the original was better than half speed mastered. Until one day I noticed the Nautilus was digitally remastered. 

Another thing that tends to make for improved SQ is speed. So when a 45 RPM version came out I bought that and sure enough, blew away the Nautilus, better even than the vintage copy.

The best then? Not so fast! Not every copy sounds the same. Tom Port cleans and listens to dozens of really good sounding copies then charges a small fortune for the cream of the crop. These he calls Hot Stampers and so out of all my four copies of Rumours the White Hot is by far the best- even though it is really just a vintage run nothing special pressing. 

In other words, you cannot tell anything really by half-speed mastered, 45, 180g, or any of that. It ain't quite exactly all luck of the draw, but it sure plays a bigger role than most care to acknowledge.

Are we having fun yet?

One of the HS Masters I have is Radiohead Hail To The Thief think I will spin it now, love it.

@millercarbon these Hot Stampers are they worth the $$$. ???

What label and what title is it?

Tower of Power Back to Oakland

Warner Bros...pressed by Direct Disk Labs

I beg to differ. I've been underwhelmed by a number of half speed mastered recordings. Joe Harley from Music Matters and the Blue Note Tone Poet series commented on the challenges of half speed mastering in a recent video interview...I think with Ken Micallef. 

Recently, I purchased the half speed mastered Peter Gabriel - Us, fantastic music, disappointing sound quality. The old Classic Records PG records all sound far better. Cheers,


Decca half speed mastered their classical LPs (London too). This was to avoid a resonance issue in their cutter system. Apparently it worked.