Where have YOU been for the last 15 years? Ever hear of the ELP laser turntable?
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You should get more hits than that. I think Arthur Salvatore has mentioned it more than that on his (controversial) audio website. Plus all of the buzz on the ELP from recent "shows."
You can read Arthur's opinions, but the executive summary seems to be although optical pickup for vinyl is a neat idea, the problem with it in practice, for at least the ELP laser turntable, is it is _**VERY**_ susceptible to surface noise. Better buy that ca.$2k Loricraft or Keith Monks record cleaner if you get one. Plus it doesn't seem to be able to read translucent or clear vinyl, which is about 10% of my collection. :-/
After a brief look into this ELP vinyl player, it occurs to me that we’re coming from two different realms of audio. You’re a “product” man, while this thread was an attempt to examine concepts. This expensive CD player for vinyl is really not what I was envisioning – and even if it were, should we say that it’s overall failure to plumb the depths of optical retrieval is the final judgment of such science? To some extent, we’re all slaves to the producers of audio equipment, but to imply that a single piece of equipment has “been there – done that” and thereby is the definitive final statement on such concepts is too confining for me.
I’m fortunate to work in an industry that has plenty of money to drop into R&D for sound. Even though a lot of it is geared toward digital films, they have to maintain backward compatibility in analogue for the smaller houses. If sharing the latest in photo/solar cell error checking is silly or naive in its conceptual application to analogue, I’ll take my raps for that. But if it’s concepts as defined by equipment you’re looking for, this is the wrong thread.
The soundtrack of a laserdisc was originally an analog, optical signal. It always struck me that it had the potential to be a very high-fidelity sound-only medium, if commercially unfeasible.
Any comments on this?
Optically read information in frequency modulation continues to return the best analogue playback in AV, all while sharing territory with video frames and multiple digital formats. I’m not sure if this space were to be opened up for “audio only” playback under the existing format (Pioneer still markets VDPs in Japan), whether there would be fidelity gains. But your question opens up the idea that an uncompressed analogue album could be reduced to cd size media.
Confusing the issue further in videodiscs were the CEDs (Capacitance Electronic Discs). These were grooved videodiscs brought out by RCA in the early 80s for a five-year run under the name SelectaVison. Retrieved AV analogue from a stylus.