This is simple pre-echo. Nothing is wrong with your setup. Most pure analog recordings exhibit this to some degree or another. The magnetic signal on the tape "bleeds" onto the adjoining section when the tape is spooled onto the reel and they overlap - the length can vary depending on reel size (7 or 10") and the tape speed (7 1/2, 15 or 30 ips). This is often referred to as "print through".
This is very evident on Shelby Lynn's "Just a Little Lovin'" title track during the first silent section. This is a very sultry, dark LP.
This normal - you cannot remove this distortion from vinyl because it is actually throughout the record (although you may only perceive it when a quiet piece precedes a louder piece).
Have the cart. re-checked or use a mint lp protractor. I used one on my Linn Sondek 12 Dynavector 10/5 and Ain't that just like a woman off Johnny Winter's Winter of 88 album stopped echoing. I thought it was done like that in the studio, but I was wrong. The cart. installation is critical. Good luck
With respect to Polk432, if adjusting your cartridge reduced pre-echo then I believe you somehow adjusted it farther from optimal rather than closer to. Not saying your alignment isn't better, since the Mint is superb. But you may have inadvertently changed some other parameter like VTF, VTA/SRA or anti-skating.
As others have posted, true pre-echo is caused by tape bleed-through and/or overly thin groove walls. Either way, it's pressed into the LP. Therefore, the more resolving and better adjusted the rig, the more pre-echo you will hear.
Just take it as a sign that you have a very resolving system! The pre-echo is evident on many recordings that have a silent section followed by a really loud section.
One of the best examples I've heard for this is "Whole Lotta Love" by Led Zeppelin. Right before he screams "WOMAN....YOOUUU NEEEEEeeD MEEEEH....." it is completely silent, and you can hear the echo of him doing it right before it happens.
Good example, and there are many throughout that song. The one you mentioned is so huge it's often audible over the radio. Many LP's have a pre-echo in the lead-in groove, especially if the opening chord is loud, as you said.
A stiffer test of system resolution is the ability to reveal POST-echoes, which are much rarer and often smothered by hall decays and real echoes. I've heard it on 1 or 2 classical LP's, unfortunately I can't remember which.
Dear Varyat: Stay " calm ", you are right on target.
Btw, Polk432 I can't speak about that " Johnny Winter's Winter of 88 album " because I don't have it but if a pre/post-echo is in a recording and you are not hearing it then you are in trouble with that cartridge set-up: you have to hear what is on the recording!, agree with Dougdeacon on this subject in your audio system.
regards and enjoy the music,
Thank you, Varyat, and everyone... I have always wondered about this phenomenon... and now I know!
I was afraid to ask anyone because I thought I had done something stupid in the tt setup despite my best efforts.
I too have done the best tractor Mint LP setup and it's an awesome change.
Its been a common problem,even in the 60's and 70's.I've had Numerous different TT's,arms,cartridges and even linear tracking ones reveal it.
The ambient noise or background noise level in your listening room can make a difference too; if you have a really quiet room oftentimes you will hear pre/post echo details that you don't hear in louder listening rooms.
Another recent album with both pre/post echoes is the Cowboy Junkies, Trinty Revisited. A great record by the way!
The example of "Whole Lotta Love" definitely demonstrates the phenomenon. However in THIS particular case the reverse reverb was intentionally added by Page by flipping the tape around. Although I'm NOT sure why...we are still talking about it all these years later so I suppose that's why he did it ;)
Apparently this is a common problem, just last week I started the exact same thread worded differently. There some good explanations posted in it. Analog Preview