VPI versus Ultrasonic cleaners


There have been rave reviews concerning ultrasonic record cleaners of all types.  But no ones has ever put the records under a microscope.  I am posting this because I have at 130x.

I purchased 2 of the same records, 1 ultrasonic cleaned and 1 not.  I examined them and the ultrasonic cleaned record while cleaner was not fully clean.  I contacted the seller and this was one of the drip dry cleaners.

I gave the ultrasonically record the following light cleaning (which did help it)
1 Docs miracle record misto sprayed and spread with a cotton makeup remover
2 Steam with distilled water
3 Vacuum with my VPI with a Delron tube (much better than the cheap clear one)
4 VPI record cleaner misto sprayed and spread with VPI brush
5 Steam with distilled water
6 Vacuum with my VPI
7 Steam with distilled water

The other record received the above process but repeating steps 1-3 and 6-7.  So twice the cleaning

I re-examined them under 130x and showed the results to a couple others who agreed that while clean the double VPI processes looked better.

Listening wise they sounded the same.  Listening was done on a SME20/3 with a Sumiko Palos presentation cartridge.   Any difference should have been picked up.

Shame I can't quickly post the pictures.  But in short if you have a good VPI process perhaps invest in a USB microscope and look at the record before buying another cleaner.  If you do get an ultrasonic cleaner I think it needs to be the drying kind.

ajcrocker1
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