Vinyl or wait for the new stuff??

I was wondering whether to dive into the world of Vinyl or wait for the new format to settle. You see, I have not listened to vinyl for more than 20 years now. I have all rated A equipment and cables and good collection of Audiophile and not so Audiophile CD. Recently I have been thinking of taking a dive into the world of Vinyl. However, knowing myself, I will not be satisfied unless I get some highend stuff which will cost me some serious amount of money. Not to mention that I have to start my collection of software. So my question here for you guys who want to help. Shall I make the move or just wait for the SACD/DVDA ? your input would be much appreciated.
*definitely* take the plunge! if you can live with buying used, a $2k vinyl set-up will sound better than *any* current cd set-up at *any* price, imho. also, for best cd sound, don't spend mega-bucks on a cd player - invest it into a preamp instead. example: my brother-in-law currently has a $1100 (retail) alchemist preamp & a $1600 alchemist cd player. he demo'd the new resolution-audio cd-55 in his system, which also includes proac 2.5's, & an audio-research 100wpc ss amp - which is what proac recommends for them. while the cd-55 sounded better than the alchemist cd when run straight-in to the amp; when run thru the preamp, there was no real major differences between the two. *and*, the cd-55 sounded better thru the pre, than when run straight-in to the amp. *and* the cd-55 is *designed* to run straight-in to an amp. he is now going to upgrade his pre, instead of his cd-player. i borrowed his alchemist cd player to compare it to my $500 nad cd-changer (real hi-end, eh?). absolutely no difference when run thru my nice cary slp98 preamp. (soon to be f/s; being replaced by a melos music-director). bottom line: get into vinyl, & wait until there's a player that will do cd/dvd/sacd/etc, before investing any more into *that* format. if you *really* wanna improve your digital-sound, upgrade your preamp! one person's opinion... doug
Doug, Thank you for the advice. I do have nice digital setup with all the tweaks. Sonic Frontiers Transport 3, Processor 3, Line 3 Preamp, Bryston 7B mono amps, Martin Logan ReQuest Speakers, and Synergistic Research Resl. Reference cables all over. All gear have Symposium platforms under them. And finally room treatments from ASC. So I would like to think that I have some good equipment. That set up gives me very lifelike music that I am very happy with, but what I was wondering about is, am I missing a lot by not having analog gear. Do I take the plunge into it or wait for the universal player?
The standard format for vinyl has been set: get yourself a used Linn Sondek LP12 on Audiogon. Sure, one can argue whether turntables X, Z, and Z each do a better job than the Linn at one particular aspect of vinyl reproduction, but why bother? What other hifi product has stood the test of time as well? There are lots of good deals ('tables, arm, and cartridge combos) to be had out there on the web by folks selling their LP12s. Go forth and revolve (at 33 and 1/3).
myoussif, definitely do the vinyl thing - it will be better'n your cd's & it's here now. i can't argue w/cardinal's recommendation of the linn - it *will* beat your cd's, but so will a rega planar3/sumiko blu-point/creek fono-stage, imho... ;~) i prefer my oracle premiere, updated to mk-v specs (w/exception of the power-supply), sumiko premier ft3 arm, ortofon mc-25fl cartridge, and pentagon ps3 fono-stage. this entire set-up cost me ~$2k. i would take the oracle over the linn, if only for looks, & one could argue all day which one sounds better. in fairness, i'm not done spending money on it, tho - i ordered an origin-live dc power-supply & modded rb250 tonearm - $700 delivered. i also have an almost-new dynavector karat-17 that i've yet to install. lemme know when there's an all-in-one cd/dvd/sacd/etc player out for ~$500 - i will surely be a buyer then! ;~)
Hi Myousiff; You have an excellent CD based system, I would say comparable to mine. And when done right,along with room tweaking, vibration control, good PCs and other wire-- as we have both done, DIGITAL CAN BE EXCELLENT. And that's not to take anything away from vinyl. But vinyl can be a pain to use and you MUST be able to listen "past" the inherent background noise of vinyl to get to the music. Carl had some excellent advice re: using vinyl: you have to like fiddling around with mechanical stuff like cleaning records, keeping everything in adjustment etc., ie you have to enjoy "the process" of using it. In another thread, I told you that I recently tried vinyl and could not listen past the annoying background noise because I have gotten so used to the stone silent background of CDs. In fact, the vinyl background noise gave me a headache every night for the 2 1/2 weeks I used it. I respect those into vinyl (my best audio friend is a vinyl junkie), but decided it's not for me. I hope my choice can be respected too. If you can accept the "considerations" I've noted above, then I would whole heartedly agree with Sedond (Doug), that you should get into vinyl. If you can, get out and audition a TT based system, and take a couple LPs with you. P.S. I believe it's going to be several years before a CD replacement will be viable in the market place, ie a lot of DVD-A titles available. Cheers. Craig. mistake re: the other thread I mentioned; see the thread "HOW MUCH $$ IN TT TO EQUAL...." Posted by Mailman. Under System Advice. Also, it looks to me like you are at where I was 2-3 months ago. I ABSOLUTELY HAD TO KNOW what the vinyl junkies always rave about. Well, I tried it and didn't like it for the reasons given. You say yourself that you have very "lifelike" digital that you like very much-- so do I. My recommendation; go out and audition a TT based system-- with your own LPs (buy some if you need to) and see if you like it. It cost me over $500. that I can't recover to find out that I couldn't listen past the LP background noise. But I know what you mean-- If I had decided to stay with vinyl, I would have spent thousands on upgrade after upgrade. Vinyl is not audio nirvana, it's just another music format-- your choice. Again Cheers, and Good Luck. Craig
Garfish: Is thread contributions like yours (balanced) that remind me that there are as many flavors as people to like them!! In my experience listening time has decreased due to job / family obligations so less preparation time (no dedicated room and small kids in the house) favours digital in my case (less potential damage to equipment such as TT). A couple of cents here. As you say Cheers!
Be cautious, be very cautious. I love vinyl and find it far superior to any CD player I've experienced (Wadia, Goldmund, Theta, Sonic Frontiers, Sony) in my system. However, vinyl requires dedication and effort from the user. It's nowhere near as convenient to use (there's no remote control). Every 20 minutes you have to get up and do something. Vinyl playback also requires the listener to understand and execute precise setup procedures. In order to maximize performance you must have a steady hand and know what good sound sounds like. Many people can not deal with this level of commitment. A high quality, but not outrageous turntable, arm, cartridge, phono preamp and record cleaning machine will cost roughly $10,000. It will out perform any and all CD playback systems. But SO WHAT! My advice is to wait. As much as I love vinyl, I recognize that it's a dying format. IMO, CD digital is "okay" to at best "good", hi-bit rate/sample rate digital promises to equal, if not better vinyl as an accurate and musically engaging format. If vinyl was right for you, you wouldn't have posted your question.
vinyl *isn't* as convenient as cd, but, when i'm doing serious listening, changing a record every 15-20 minutes is not really a big deal - it's actually a bit of a break to stretch, etc. and, ya, i *do* have to treat my records w/special care, unlike cd's. as far as the inherent background noise, ya, it *is* there on some discs, but, i guess as i've been listening to albums since i was a kid - about 1965 - it really is not a distraction to me. i can listen thru it to the music. i *can* see how it would be annoying, to folks not used to it. regarding onhwy61's comment that it takes $10k for a high-quality analog rig - sure you *can* spend that much, but it's surely not necessary - especially if ya buy used equipment. my current rig, at $2k, i think is pretty outrageous, if i say so myself, and, when done, i will have almost $3k into it. but ya don't have to spend even this much for a rig that'll be more musical than current digital. a brand-gnu rega planar 25 is ~$1300, & it's awesome. regarding digital, i have found that a really excellent preamp helps me to enjoy it - but i still like vinyl better! :>) doug
2 true that vinyl requires a "commitment" but it's worth it. from your post, myoussif, i assume u already have sum vinyl, leftover from bygone times. if so, u cannot believe how it will sound on a really good analouge frontend. those who say, "u hafta listen past the background" have likely not experienced the velvety background silence that u can attain with a well-cleaned record on, say, a basis debut vacuum tt/ graham 2.0 ceramic arm/ koetsu onyx platinum cartridge combo played thru an aesthetix io phono pre. course it'll set u back a few k$, but what doesn't? the musical experience u may attain is far more satisfying than u can expect with today's digital. and, even if the lp is a dying medium, u can still get around 300,000 more lp titles (new & used) than are available as dvda's or sacd's.
........some really good posts above, and I appreciate not being "attacked" for my preference for digital-- it's a personal thing. I do agree that you probably have to spend a lot more money to get HQ digital music than you do for HQ analog music, and both Myoussif and I have done that(I have a Levinson 37 transport and 360S DAC). Cheers. Craig.
Vinyl is great if you are willing to make the investment in time and equipment. Even without it I would not wait around for the "next thing" in digital. There is nothing wrong with what is out there now (standard digital playback)if you match components carefully.
Thank you all for sharing your thoughts with me. I really appreciate the fact that you guys take some of your busy time to put down your thought for me. It is great. SO I have decided to just enjoy what I have and stay with digital. Craig, your words hit home. Once again -to all of you- thanks a lot for saving me some $??K.
Before you resign to second best, attempt cajoling a dealer into an audition. Once you hear the warmth, depth and tonal accuracy that is achieved with a great vinyl rig, going back to the digits will be tough. Very, very expensive to achieve top end in vinyl, though. The argument of diminishing returns is nearly always valid, but squeezing the best from your listening material takes some of the best in equipment. I have nearly 1800 records, itle in comparison to some, but more than enough to continue the enjoyment. Pops, ticks and all
Siddh, thank you, but I think I just wait for the new formate. enjoy your LPs and thanks once again. Mohamed
As part of the younger generation (I'm 20) I've spent most of my life with digital. I've put together a wonderful system with a Levinson digital front end. I must admit I thought I was in sonic nirvana until curiousity got the best of me and I got out my mothers old Dual TT and bought a cheap NAD phono pre. While my analog setup is hardly resolving compared to what I'm used to, there's just something there that's just right. It was because of this that I asked the question, vinyl or SACD? I have yet to audition SACD because alot of the dealers whom I have yet to make a major purchase from don't think it's worth thier time to demo equipment to a "kid." Alas, if I had the money I'd jump into vinyl, but I don't. The new formats seem promising from what I hear (from others). I think I'll just wait and see how they turn out.
The sound quality of vinyl is never going to happen with digital,but the commitment must be there to get involved with vinyl,I did and will probably sell all of my vinyl related equiptment.
I bought a ten-year old Ariston RD-90 turntable, a Benz-Micro Silver cartridge and an Audiomat Phono 1 phono amp - total cost in USD was about $2,000. The sound is so rich, so musical by comparison with even very good cds on a very good cd system. It also opened up a whole new area of enjoyment: shopping for old records. It's great to find a real gem for a few dollars at a used record store or yard sale which makes the latest cd sound, well, just a bit thin.
Vinyl has the ability to suck you into a performance in a way that digital can only roughly immitate. Because many of the best ever made records were made years ago. The wait to experience them seems very unwise. I am very fortunate and have many of these captured works of art. Once experienced with their limitless soundstages packed with the emotion and feeling of the performers. It comes much closer to being there and feeling the real presence of the performers than digital. With a properly setup quality table, arm, and cartridge combination you become transported into a new world free of record noise and the constant reminder that digital isn't giving more that just a sample of the promise of a real musical experience. Vinyl is well worth the effort. When you love music as I do. What other options are their?
Get into vinyl, it's the ultimate. It's a fun tactile exercise also. Very fulfilling, never disappointing.
Your original post reminded me of where I was 6 months ago. I have pushed the cd envelope as far as it canbepushedWadia 27/27i (Huntley modified) all great wire, power conditioning, etc. I grew tired of waiting for a new / improved digital format that only audiophiles want. Our numbers are too few to drive an economically feasable new medium. Non audiophiles, i.e. 99% of the world population are perfectly happy with cd's at $14.00 ea. Why would they buy new hardware to play $30.00 discs when they are happy with their present players and library of cds. We can all hope and wish for DVD-A or SACD (as I do) but the economic reality will dictate the future formats. My feeling is that there will be no future digital formats with anywhere near the penetration of cd, let alone a replacement of cd. So..... I decided to take the plunge a few months ago, anf couldn't be happier. The bottom line is that vinyl sounds more like real music than any digital I've ever heard, including SACD. SACD is much better that cd, but not as good as vinyl. The above comments are based on what my ears hear and nothing else. If you are interested in hearing what instruments and voices sound like in the real world vinyl does that better. Any other criterion for music reproduction seems misdirected. GO FOR IT !!
your wait for the "new stuff" could be quites awhile. Especially when you consider how slow the supply of new titles for either format is likely to be. But even more ;important will be the almost total lack a vast quantities of ALL knds of music on vinyl. Even new stuff is more available than you might think until you actually get into vinyl. Also I can't stress enough the pure joy of finding new ways and places to find vinyl and the thrill of discovering music you never even knew about because of the many branching paths open to vinyl hunters. And a very friendly & knowledgeble group of people out there in vinyl land. But be careful! It is a true addiction! Good listening gwood
Your exactly where i am at right now. I have just restarted an lp collection, and have purchased around 50 or so in the last 3 weeks.I still have not made up my mind on a TT. Though it appears to either be a vpi mk IV or rega 25 or michell gyro se, or drop down and save some money, music hall mmf-5. So i guess the way this sounds, i'm still not decided.I figured i can always get dvda and use all the speakers if i want to, but i remember 20 years ago i really liked the sound of lp's so i'm coming back. actually it's been about24 years.why wait! and vinyl costs, so get your supply built up, the prices can only go up, until more people start producing more lp's.
Case04 Grab a P-25! Best sound for the buck plus!! I went the Music Hall route,dont waste your money.They are good but the P-25 is great!You would have to spend 5 grand on digital to compete with the P-25.
david99 is rite, the rega tables are excellent - especially for the money. *but*, i got an old oracle, updated to mk-v specs, for the same money as a new p-25. of course, i later spent some more on it for an origin-live modified rega tonearm & origin-live dc power-supply. :>) yule get more bang for yer buck buying a used 'table. good luck, doug
I just bought a rega 25 w/600 arm and super elyse cartridge. I also bought an ARC ph-3 phono preamp (outstanding!). I chose the rega partly because it is considered 'set and forget' whereas some high end players need constant expert adjustment. On a good album, this thing walked all over my $3000 sony XA7 cd player. The music has considerably more presence and weight. I a/b compared simultaneously played albums, and the vinyl is quite a bit better. There is something to be said for cd's convenience. Also, the newer CD recordings are pretty good. I just ordered a record cleaner, and I expect that to improve my records as well. I figure it is better to get all my records clean now, so my turntable doesn't get contaminants on it. There is a lot of enjoyment in finding an original mono recording of Glen Gould $3.00, 'Lady in Satin'(GREAT RECORD!) $4, or 'The Trinity Session (in perfect condition!)' $4. I really like the fact that I can 'try' music for $3-4. It's great! How often do you have to clean the stylus, and what should you use ?
Sorry but here is a real audiphile myth: that vinyl sounds better than digital. Perhaps if you spend $20K or more for your analog gear it does. Or if you have lousy equipment or CDs. But in the real world price level vinyl just sounds much worse than digital! You hear the cartridge "scratching" the records groove, most records are off center, record deteriorate rapidly and start making noises, turntables are a pain to maintain and calibrate, you have less bass, most motors do not supply constant velocity, etc. A reasonable 24/96 digital combo in the $2-4K range will blow away similarly priced analog gear.
Joe,boy are you clueless!!! Climb back under your digital rock amd come out when you can open your ears. BTW,ever hear a decent analog front end??
Is it joe_in_coherent? Sorry,I just have trouble sometimes with some of the ridiculous posts left here.
Like hell!!! You just are full of crap, Joe. Please assume room temperature, before you explode (from being so full of crap). My vinyl front end costs less than my digital, and vinyl is easily better (and that's saying a lot, since my digital is at least as good as yours, if not better...for CD's only, anyway). YOU NEED TO GET A THORAZINE PRESCRIPTION, and continue the research I gave you, on what's behind a black hole's event horizon. Whatever that is, I'm sure it can be modeled digitally, so you'll be in heaven...the only way you could ever get to heaven, that is.
For what's it's worth, maybe not much to this list which spends more than I can on their equipment: I recently expanded into vinyl just to be able to hear rock music from the 60s and 70s, which isn't always available on cd. I got a used Thorens TD 166 Mk-II and added a new Grado ZF1+ cartridge. Pretty modest stuff. Using McIntosh C-28 or AVA SUper Pas III phono stage preamp, Meadowlark hotrot spkers. Have to say, when I'm able to find a mint LP, few scratches, and well-recorded (not all were despite my romanticized recollection), it's great fun. The sound is hard to distinguish from that my mcintosh MCD-7007 puts out, unless it's playing a really well-produced cd. Moreover, it is delightful, musical some would say, to listen to the vinyl. Get a bad LP, though, scratchy etc., and it can give you abit of a headache. All told, I'm pretty happy with the 250 bucks I spent to hear the music of my youth in a satisfying format.
David99: go home & cry to mamma ! Joe is criticizing my equipment on which you wasted all those $$$! C'mon, face it, not everybody thinks the same way. Respect other people's opinions or risk becoming a pariah like eber.
joe_in_coherent "Not everybody thinks the same way" Thanks for saying that! Misconceptions about vinyl vs CD is fueled by blow hards like you.Again,if you really stand by your silly remarks then,yes you are a clueless man.Are you going to end up being thrown out of audiogon like you have other sites? I have read you are very antagonistic and a real pain in the ass.Now speaking of "momma",she died 2 weeks ago.Just thought you might like to know.
imho, a $2k-$4k digital rig will be only marginally better (if at all) than a $500 digital rig, if run thru an excellent preamp. my <$3k analog rig (fono-stage included) will sound nicer than *any* digital rig at *any* price, imho. of course, i stress this is *my* opinion... doug
Hi Dud,how ewe been? The Pass is awesome but gets lots of help from the 99!! :) I agree with your "opinion" 100% When I was super cheap and flirting again with vinyl I picked up a $2.00 yardsale BSR turntable.It had a dirty,green Sure cartridge on it.I had no clue then about set up(not much on the BSR) and the cantilever was bent and loose.I straightened it out and superglued it "solid" At this same yard sale I picked up some mint viny for a dime each including "Its A Beautiful Day" (white bird one) I borrowed a junk preamp with a phono stage from a friend.This is no lie! Before I could sit down I heard sound I knew was different than what I was used to on my CD player.I stood at the preamp adjusting the volumn and heard a detail and sense of ease to the music I had never heard.Once sitting I was amazed that the sound stage depth and width had grown.I loved my junk table and the sound I was getting from "its a beautiful day"The tamboreen in "free Bird " sounded so real to me.I have often used that 10 cent LP for a sound test disc.The CD player I had at the time isnt the greatest but its not too bad either.Denon DCM 460?480 Its long gone now as is that $2.00 BSR,well actually I stripped the old gal down and use her now to spin LP's to treat with Groove Glide.I have never looked back.
hi david, glad that rogue 99 does it for ya - i guess the impedence mismatch was yust no good in my system. prolly a good thing, cuz i never wooda found my melos preamp! all the euphony of the rogue, w/the dynamics, detail & frequency response of good solid-state, mebbe even better? i've never heard dynamics like what i hear from this piece. melos sez ya don't even need an amp w/efficient speakers, i believe 'em. folks talk about the pros-n-cons of not using a preamp - how about the pros-n-cons of not using an amp?!? ;~) another ting i like about it that the rogue duzzn't have, is a tape-loop so i can run my dbx 3bx w/o having it in the loop when not needed, & balance controls... glad ya made out nice w/yer vinyl, but go easy on those digiphiles of the world - some guys yust can't be bothered, and digital sound ain't half-bad, if done-up right... :>) what really amazed me about vinyl, is i actually had a fairly decent set-up that i used for a long time: a heavily-modified c&j walker 'table w/a sumiko premiere ft-3 tonearm. well, i got the opportunity to pick up a used oracle w/grace tonearm, that i had upgraded to mk-v specs (except power-supply), & it was not too spendy - $1250 included a gnu box from oracle, shipped from canada. to be honest, i expected only a minor improvement, if any. & i really din't care - this was a case of wanting something only cuz it looks so cool! ;~) well, i couldn't believe how much better everything sounded - even the wife was astounded. and as it was, my old vinyl rig still kicked serious digital butt. now, w/origin-live mod power supply & tonearm, i'm in vinyl heaven. a rebuilt lyra cartridge on the way should really be sweet. ya, i, too, still crank *it's a beautiful day* - amazing, how good a condition it's still in, it's seen a lot of abuse over the years... ;~) ciao for now, dud
Hey David99, sorry about your mom, honestly, of course I didn't know she had passed away. It's just a saying you know... My sincere condolences, such is life. I hope you're doing well. With regards to the topic at hand, perhaps your pain is clouding your mind. You are being arrogant and foolish. I restate everything about vinyl I said before, and I have a lot of experience with vinyl. In most cases vynil sucks as a medium. Most analog rigs I have heard suck. It makes no sense to try to hear "beyond" the inherent imperfections. Why, if that were so why not tolerate the harsh horrendous CDs produced in the eighties. So, if you can't take it when someone has a different view I suggest you form a vinyl-lovers asylum where everyone thinks the same way you do and have your own totalitarian kingdom. I respect your opinion but you clearly don't respect mine.
I bought my first pair of Magnepans and moving coil cartridge when I was 15 years old in 1979 so I have some experience with this topic. Despite the fact that my system has grown and evolved over the years to include Mark Levinson CD, Jadis amplifiers and speakers including Apogee ribbons and Martin Logan SL 3s etc. I have been puzzled to admit that I NEVER EVER EVER really listen to or enjoy my stereo AT ALL anymore, other than switching it on for background music at low volumes when I am reading or entertaining. I thought maybe I was just getting old or romanticizing the musical experiences of my youth but it is increaslingly clear that the answer and culprit is CDs!!!!! They are nasty and unsatisfying little things in every way from their migraine inducing character, their annoying anti theft tape, their cheap dime store packaging, lack of liner notes and vulgar masss market acceptability. I went into a store recently and heard a decent turntable for the first time in years and relaxed and enjoyed the music just like the good old days. Joe_coherent, I would be FASCINATED to hear more of your ideas and why you feel the way you do. Maybe you should relaunch Stereo Review Magazine or write for the Audio Critic. In defense of digital, I will say that SACD sounded pretty good to me on a short listen at Mark Levinson's new store in NYC, but I can't imagine that the format will make it and there seems to be about 5 titles available. I would be delighted to correspond directly with any of you on any topic or help with anything that I can. Long live audiophiles and best wishes to you all. Secret Geek
Joe, I'd define a "pariah" as someone who got kicked out of Audio Asylum, and is soon to be kicked off of Audiogon.
And Joe, merely stating that you "respect someone's opinion" isn't enough. Anyone can discern, from reading the context and attitude in your statements, that it is clear that YOU are the one who wants "your own totalitarian kingdom". Too bad you'll never be man enough to have one...
Why do the majority of you guys waste your time on these angry personal assaults ? Many of us have been away from vinyl for years and probably harbor many misconceptions about how vinyl stands up against digital in 2000. Vinyl is inherently more surface noisy and generally more complicated to deal with, HOWEVER, IT SOUNDS MORE ACCURATE & NATURAL THAN CD. We can debate the reasons for the differences till the cows come home, but what's the point ? If,in fact, what we are trying to do in this hobby is re-create live music in our homes- then I contend that well executed vinyl playback sounds more natural than well executed cd playback- on a dollar for dollar basis.If more natural is more correct than vinyl is better. If more natural is not more correct than I'm mixed up as to what we are supposed to be trying to achieve. The acid test- demo your favorite well recorded cd & lp of the same title and decide which sounds more natural, more pleasing- AND LEAVE IT AT THAT !!!
I've done that many times, and in addition "accuracy" was favored with the LP also. My CD player costs $3000, and my LP front end costs around $2900, including phono stage. It's easy to criticize those who are debating this, until you join in, then you might better understand. For instance, if I were Joe, I would tell you that "you simply aren't making a logical argument, and thus your thoughts have no valid basis to be included here". Only if he said it, it would be much more rude, much less evolved...And you watch, he'll say that I'm dead wrong, and treat you with the highest respect, just to spite me. I have his number, 1-800-blowhard...
One practical consideration is the availability of media. IMHO, I believe that a quality analogue front end still surpasses the best 16 bit gear available today. While I've abandoned analogue for the convienence of CD, an in-law of mine remains committed. I understand his greatest issue today is not pouring concrete turntable foundations, maintaining exotic bearing assemblies or keeping his disks microscopically clean - but the never ending hunt for decent vinyl to play. The new digital formats appear to much more closely approach analogue quality. I suspect that for whichever format emerges dominant, there will be no eventual shortage of media. So for me, I've decided to hobble along with the 16 bit stuff a little longer.
Merits to both formats. Some of the brand new digital recordings such as 'Pat Metheny and Jim hall', and the diana krall recordings sound excellent on my 44khz player. I would guess that they use tube mics to get that nice warm sound. On my equivalently priced cd/vinyl (about 3K each) systems, I do much prefer the sound of a vinyl recording to a CD. This preference has increased the as I listen to the record player more. I've only had it for a few weeks. Vinyl has won three a/b comparisons with different recordings from different eras (the trinity session, ricky lee jones, and the original glen gould bach preludes). I like the naturalness and sense of presence that a record has. A cd recording feels like it's floating on air, whereas the vinyl feels like its sitting on a concrete foundation. CD's have an ethereal quality to them. You're a little less 'there'. It's a little like driving a windows-up air conditioned 4x4 verses hiking. Easier but more forgetable. I am hoping the newer formats like SACD, and 96khz will bring some of this 'thereness' back. After all, many of the new records are digital recordings. One of my vinyl vs CD preferences, the wonderful 'trinity session' album was made on an RDAT machine w/one microphone. Their recording equipment could probably fit into a suitcase ! Perhaps much of CD's harshness comes from downsampling. Another source of harshness may be cheap cd players. A cheap cd player emphasizes the 'digital harshness', or brittleness. Once you hear it, it bothers you.
John_l, pleased to read your comments in defense of vinyl. Carl has expressed his preference, and now, so will I. The general topic is one of High End Audio, and therefore is NOT limited to "best value," or most convenient audio. To me that means that the ultimate performance people have a right to comments as well. Therefore, I say to Joe_coherent or anyone else that says that CD is superior to LP, then you have not heard vinyl at it's full potential. Perhaps the statement that inexpensive LP playback equipment will not compete with similarly priced digital gear may in fact be correct. The vinyl format requires tremendous work to make perfect, and if the work is put in, it can be made to work better than any other music format. This (of course) excludes those who have access to original master tapes of musical performances. I will not argue for vinyl concerning value, the availability of new titles, convenience of operation, or justify that everyone should put in the work required for a perfect set up. I WILL state that if the labor and money are invested, nothing will compete with the performance LP can provide. Personally, for me to get there, I have (at retail) $46,000.00 just in the turntable, phono cartridge and the equipment DIRECTLY associated to play an LP. This certainly does not include my music library, the record cleaning equipment or the substantial investment in the remainder of my system (including the Soundlab Ultimate 1's). You can ridicule my substantial investment, call me crazy, or just dedicated. However, if you have not heard LP playback at this level, you are correct ONLY within your realm of experience. To further clarify my personal position, I do not deal with any retail stores, I do advertising photography for the audio business, with ads in nearly every high end publication printed this month. I have been in or around the high end audio business for over 30 years, and am personal friends with many of the people who manufacture the products discussed at Audiogon. There are no manufacturers within my experience that will NOT agree that LP is superior. This may have to be discussed in the hallway at CES, or at their home, but it is none the less common knowledge in the business. This does not mean that CD cannot be wonderful, it certainly does not mean you should abandon digital and move to LP. It simply means that if the ultimate musical performance is really valuable to you, the LP format is a requirement.
Hi Albert,good to see you post again.Its not the same here when you arent around.As I agree with your above comments I really dont believe one has to spend $40,000++ to get superior analog vs digital sound.Also,you are so correct that ANYONE who really has ventured into analog playback and did it right has no doubt which is better.You dont but I do deal with audio dealers.They will take you straight to the CD players when you ask to hear something but when analog is mentioned their eyes light up!! This happens everytime and most dealers still have analog in their systems (at least the ones I know) So,yes your point is very true.It has to be done right or ya might as well live with inferior digital.Happy Holidays Albert! :)
I think some how I must be missing the point. The original question was "Vinyle or wait for the new stuff??" Are the vinyle opinions the only right ones and those who feel digital is looking forward and anolog has reached it's golden age just plane wrong and not worthy? It's sad that people can not feel comfortable expressing there viewpoint without being chastized for expression. I for one feel that my investment in software is one factor. I have a SACD player that I believe (my opionon) has raised the bar quite a bit. I for one will continue to move forward with the industry and enjoy my "inferior" equipment and lack of "natural" sound.
I agree Jade, it is sad when people must align themselves in such a way as to not see the other point of view, or horror of horrors, to USE BOTH VINYL AND CD....
Jadem6, I don't know if you have carefully read some of the above posts that ridicule analog. Why is it when the question is: "Vinyle or wait for the new stuff," it is wrong to offer strong support for the format I think is best? I do not question that the LP format will be displaced by digital, regardless of it's superiority or not. My point is that new does not necessarily mean better. I have digital and LP in my own system, and like Carl, wonder what would be the problem with enjoying both. If digital makes you feel you are "looking forward," and that is of equal or greater importance to you than the quality afforded by analog, then avoid LP all together. I guess I do not understand why you think that a suggestion that I believe guarantees musical excellence, somehow automatically makes everyone else "not worthy."
Hey Albertporter, I see you don't understand my responce. I in no way downgraded vinyl, I just was wondering why like myself now, any pro digital responce requires a tort responce from others. I was most impressed with Carl_eber for not doing so. I too have both, but given the limited music avalible, size of my digital library, and advances in digital sound quality my answer to the original question is Digital.