The mobile fidelity sound lab catalog would be a good place to start.
27 responses Add your response
Mrmb, there is a huge selection of readily available vinyl reissues available today, many of which have been superbly remastered. I may come back to offer some specific recommendations, but allow me to start this conversation with some more general observations...
Look at Acoustic Sounds' Recommended list (www.acousticsounds.com/recommended.cfm), it is pretty reliable. LPs are clearly identified, and make up a substantial portion of their list.
Use the LP search capabilities at Red Trumpet (www.redtrumpet.com) and Acoustic Sounds. At Red Trumpet, simply include an additional keyword of "LP" to any other keywords. For example: "speakers corner lp" (a seach on just "LP" brings back nearly 2,000 entries)
I've found the following labels offering superbly remastered reissues, within the genres listed. If the music is something you enjoy, you won't go wrong buying this genre on this label.
* Jazz *
Speakers Corner (Verve reissues)
Analogue Productions (esp. the Fantasy 45 rpm reissue series)
* Classical *
Speakers Corner (the Mercury reissues are incredibly good across the board, the Deccas reissues are excellent for the most part)
45 rpm reissues from Classic Records, the 33 rpm reissues are variable.
Reference Recordings Mastercut series - oop, but some titles still available from Acoustic Sounds - Gershwin, Rachmaninoff, Ravel (do a vinyl search under "Label" "Reference Recordings", or tryy this link if it continues to work: Reference Recordings Mastercut series)
* Blues *
Analogue Productions (look at the APO recordings)
Speakers Corner (Verve and RCA)
* Folk *
Another resource is a recurring thread here on Audiogon called "What's on your turntable tonight?". If you read through this you will find a number of recommendations of specific recordings that are currently available.
My recommendation would be to pick up as many of the Analogue Productions 45 Jazz series now before they are out of print. At $50 a pop it gets expensive real fast. But trust me you won't be sorry you did. Start with Sonny Rollins "Saxophone Colossus" and the rest will follow. Those can be found at Red Trumpet, Music Direct and of course Acoustic Sounds. Best-Gary
OK, back with some specific recommendations...
Stravinsky's Firebird Ballet (Mercury) - 45rpm reissue from Classic Records (the best of the Classic Records Mercury reissues) This LP is no longer in print. Buy it now.
Mendelssohn's Scottish Symphony (Decca), 45 rpm reissue from Speakers Corner (also in the list mentioned below.). This LP is no longer in print. Buy it now.
The Mercury Classical Reissues from Speakers Corner - all of them. Choose based on your musical interests. As Mechanics notes, the Starker/Bach box set is superb. More coming...
The best of the Speakers Corner Decca reissues from another thread. All of these fall among my top recommendations for sound quality and performance. Choose based on your musical preferences.
The 45 rpm Fantasy reissue series from Analogue Productions. As mentioned by Gmele, they are all outstanding. Choose based on your musical interests.
Lightnin' Hopkins - Goin' Away Analogue Productions 45 rpm
Lightnin' Hopkins - Last Night Blues with Sonny Terry Analogue Productions 45 rpm
Wild Child Butler - Sho' 'Nuff Analogue Productions 45 rpm
Memphis Slim & Willie Dixon - The Blues Every Which Way Speakers Corner
Wild Child Butler - Wild Child Butler Analogue Productions direct-to-disc
Eric Bibb - Spirit & the Blues Opus 3, 45 rpm
Doc Watson - Southbound Cisco Reissue
Soc Watson - Home Again Cisco Reissue
Joan Baez - Farewell Angelina Cisco Reissue
Hope this helps give you a start.
2nd on Rushton's recommendationa of the 45rpm Fantasy Jazz reissues and the Speakers Corner classical reissues.
For less coin, white label test pressings of Analog Productions from Acoustic Sounds sound great, and can be had for < $20. For example, I bought a test pressing of Art Pepper - Eleven for $10, that sounds amazing.
Two other reference quality standouts for me are:
Louis Armstrong - Satchmo Plays King Oliver(200g); St. James Infirmary is to die for!
Holly Cole - Romantically Helpless(LP w/45rpm extra disk)
Enjoy your vinyl! I always do. Cheers,
I think the latest 180g virgin 30th anniversary Pink Floyd "Dark Side of the Moon" pressing sounds great, if that's your thing. I also have an 70's era "plain jane" pressing that collects dust now. Someone mentioned the 4 LP Echoes set. I borrowed this set from a friend and thought the quality of the vinyl was fine, but I refused to buy it when I found that the version of "Echoes" was abridged--just shameful, shame shame!
I also enjoy the Classic Records 200g "Kind of Blue". Very nice quality vinyl.
Both are cliche "everyone's got em" albums, I must apologize, but I've found these to be very good quality pressings of popular choices and both are readily available as new.
If you're into Radiohead, the 10" Kid A pressing sounds wonderful...the Smash OK computer and the Bends are also very nice vinyls.
If you dig Portisehead, the Go virgins sound lovely.
All available brand spankin' new, though I did find that as the Smash Radioheads are imported to the US (not sure where you are), you need to stick with a place that deals in imports. I live a block away from an import shop so I don't know where online to get them, but they're out there, sealed, waitin' for ya.
$.02, cash tendered ;)
Rushton's choices are superb. If I might just add one more in his folk category (along with the incredible Doc Watson LPs) I would include Eva Cassidy "Songbird" 180g issue on S&P Records (S&P-501).
In the jazz category, Classic Records 180g reissue of Coleman Hawkins "Night Hawk" originally Prestige Swingville 2016
Dirtyragamuffin: I was wondering about the 30th anniversary Pink Floyd "Dark Side of the Moon". I too have an early 1970's pressing. When I purchased my first "real" system -- JVC Integrated, Dual Table, ESS Heil AMT 3 Speakers -- I recall phoning the audio shop asking the name of the lp that I had just heard -- yep, it was "Dark Side of the Moon".
Rushton: I will let ya know my purchases and thoughts. While I'm excited in procuring new lp's to add to my -- archived from my youth -- collection, I'm even more excited waiting to receive, and set-up a recently ordered Galibier Quattro Table, with Tri-Planar Tonearm. With a hunks of cash attached to each foot, it’s safe to say that I'm jumping back into vinyl with both feet.
Nostalgia has set in! Man, am I looking forward to playing some of my vinyl that hasn't seen the light of day for over 2-decades -- it's 'bout time isn't it?
Mrmb, if you've never cleaned your LPs, do yourself a big favor and clean them with either the Disc Doctor (my preference) or Record Research cleaning fluids. Do the same with all the new vinyl you buy BEFORE playing for the first time. With the investment you're making in your TT setup, you'll find this cleaning step very rewarding both in how it keeps your records from developing pops, tick and crackles, and how much better it will make them sound.
Rushton: I've had a 16.5 ordered for several weeks and am wondering if I'm every going to receive it. VPI says nothing is backordered, my local dealer hasn't seen it yet.
Certainly, before I play even one lp, they will be cleaned first. The record cleaning rituals thread found on the Gon. educated me in terms of what to do, and how to do it.
Richardmr: It appears that I'm going down the cottage industry path as far as audio equipment is concerned. My interconnects and speaker cables are produced locally by a fellow hobbyist, and a power cord was just purchased from Moray James, found on the Gon. I just received a Supratek Chenin preamp from Mick Maloney in Australia, and the Galibier Quattro was ordered from Thom Mackris of Galibier Design.
The Supratek was purchased based on communications here at the Gon., and elsewhere (I couldn’t be happier with it) and the Galibier was found after loads of research regarding the Teres Group, and the offshoots: Teres Audio, Redpoint Audio, and Galibier Design. I found the exercises that the folks involved in the Teres Group did, to get to where each individual now is, interesting and informative. What better place to buy, than from consummate tweakers dedicated to making a great product better.
Discussions with Thom Mackris lead to my interest in his Galibier Tables. His audio expertise, and experiences with, and knowledge of tables, are amazing. My communications with him have been wonderfully informative. It’s interesting talking with an individual who’s more interested in the end results, than he is in selling what he produces. Moreover, I had the pleasure of hosting Thom and his equipment at my home while he was passing through on a 4,000 mile road trip to the East Coast.
I can’t say enough good things about Thom, his products, and the time he’s taken with me. After seeing and hearing his table, I can’t wait until I get mine.
For a cartridge, I’m starting with a Denon DL-103R. It’s stupidly inexpensive when compared to its capabilities and others of its caliber – time will tell where I go from there.
Rushton: Thought you might like to know that my first vinyl purchase in a couple of decades, included the following two items that you strongly encouraged:
Stravinsky: The Firebird (Complete Ballet)
Mendelssohn: Symphony 3 ‘Scotch’ & Fingal’s Cave Overture
The others selected are as follows:
Weavers Reunion At Carnegie Hall, 1963
Harry Belafonte Returns To Carnegie Hall
Dire Straits Love Over Gold
These, along with my archived albums, should get me up and running quite nicely....Thanks to all!
Rushton: Oops, in my previous post I meant to mention that another thread that you posted to, consisted of a very descriptive dissertation about vinyl gram weight. It proved very informative to my "back to the future" vinyl sojourn – kudos upon kudos!
Well, shucks ... guess I'll throw in my 2 cents worth:
1. Supertramp, Crime of the Centry, MFSL UHQR
2. Pink Floyd, DSOTM, Japanese Pro-Use Series
3. Beatles, Abbey Road, Japanese Pro-Use Series
4. Pink Floyd, WYWH, Mastersound 1/2 speed master
5. Eva Cassidy, Songbird
6. John Klemmer, Straight From the Heart (D2D)
7. Fresh Aire III, American Grammophone
8. Little Feat, Waiting for Columbus, MFSL
9. Junior Wells, Hoodoo Man Blues, Analogue Prods.
10. Fennell, Cleveland Winds, Holst, Handel & Bach (Telarc)