i have continued to buy the same vpi cleaning fluid that came with the 16.5 and have found it to work very well. The records always sound clear with minimal or no noise depending on lp condition, with no residue. i just don't have the time or patience to clean one record 3 times with different fluids. perhaps someone could explain the benefits of this in comparison.
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Your choice may be dictated by how many LPs you clean. I clean about 100 LPs per month, mostly thrift store finds. If I were to use one of the more expensive commercial fluids it would make a serious dent in my budget. So, I use a DIY fluid which costs a fraction of what the better commercial fluids cost per LP. I then play the LPs. If an LP sounds like there is still mold release or other contaminants in the grooves or if it is a spectacular LP that I will play again and again, then I will give it another cleaning with a commercial fluid. With my DIY fluid I get no build-up of gunk on my stylus and I have to rewash only 1-2% of the LPs I acquire. This saves me substantial time and money compared to using one of the better commercial two or three step cleaning fluids. YMMV
I highly recommend RRL (Record Research Labs) Super Record Wash. It cleans very well, and does not require rinsing. Mobile Fidelity recently purchased the brand name, so now it has been rebranded as Mobile Fidelity Super Record Wash.
Mobile Fidelity Super Record Wash
My two cents worth!
Another good product to seriously consider, would no doubt be Audio Intelligent Vinyl Soultions #6 One Step Cleaner.
While I haven't yet personally used this particular Cleaner, I use all the other Cleaning Fluids they make, and am more than pleased with them.
I believe they are still running a special on thier entire product line till the end of this month.
Pick a brand name. They are far more alike than different. Only marketing sets them apart. You'll read all sorts of posts favoring this fluid or that fluid but the simple fact is you're cleaning plastic discs not a cashmere sweater.
Most are 99% water, a little surfactant, and maybe a drying agent. Some add a little snake oil. For 20 years I've been using a wash developed for me by a chemist who worked for the same company I did. My records are as clean and probably cleaner than the next guy.
Far more important IMO are the brushes, vacuum, and time taken to clean the vinyl.
Steaming is a good tool as well.
Of the two over-the-counter brands I've tried (RRL/Mofi, AIVS) I'd choose AIVS.
RRL/Mofi Super Vinyl Wash leaves behind a lubricant which makes surfaces very quiet, but it also limits HF extension and dynamics. AIVS doesn't, and it contains more cleaning agents so it's more likely to remove whatever's on any particular record.
IME no single step or single step + rinse method is as effective as multiple steps. Different contaminants often respond to different cleaning solutions. But if one solution is what you're willing to do I'd choose AIVS's One Step.
Thanks everybody. To Rgordonpf, I have maybe about only 200 records right now, but with the seeming growth in the last few years of 180 and 200 gram, and 45RPM releases I have started to occasionally buy some new disks, so I guess it may get a bit larger now.
Doug, I will not argue the probable superiority of a multi-step method, but like Gibson58 I just don't have a mindset to do that kind of thing.
I use 70%.. If I could find 90% or 99% I would probably use it. Remember that RUBBING contains acetone I believe which is a bad thing. Let me know what you think. The Photo-flo bottle is pretty large for the amount used.
Let me know what you think.
I have heard a lot of negative about alcohol on vinyl, but it does not stay on very long with a vacuum based cleaner anyway. A gallon of cleaner for a few dollars and does a nice job.
Let me clarify my previous post. It concerned the generic term rubbing alcohol as used in the thread. In this context we are discussing the use of isopropyl alcohol. Isopropyl Rubbing Alcohol USP, BP (USP is United States Pharmacopeia and BP is British Pharmacopeia; both are standards set by the government) contains 68-99% of isopropyl alcohol by volume, water, color additives, stabilizers, and perfume oils.
The other type of rubbing alcohol available is Rubbing Alcohol USP, BP. This product uses ethanol as its base (70%). The balance is water and ATF denaturant forumula 23-H (to make it undrinkable) which contains tiny amounts of MIBK (methyl isobutyl ketone), DMK (aka acetone), and ethanol.
Look at the label to see what you are using.
Wouldn't a higher concentration of alcohol just mean it would evaporate quicker for our purposes? I did not give the home formula to be assaulted. I did not remember that rubbing alcohol had acetone or ethanol...I just knew not to use it! Whatever the "rubbing" chemical may be...it is not good for vinyl. Tvad had asked for the home solution and by reading this thread I thought I would offer up mine. When the list of ingredients was given to me I was supposed to find the highest concentration but I have not been anywhere yet that had 99% when I needed it. (or I would have purchased it) I am not a chemist but the person who passed it along to the audiophile friends here is a chemist... and has about $100,000 worth of electronics which includes a Symphonic Line turntable and cartridge. Not exactly mass-fi. His record collection takes up most of a 10 X 10 room. In any event..try it or don't. I am not a salesman and I am not not trying to ruin everyone's vinyl. Use it or spend your $$ on some company's formula which is still mostly water. It doesn't matter to me.
Jeff, I appreciate the formula.
I do believe 99% vs. 70% isopropyl alcohol would change the ratio so that one would use less than one pint per gallon-minus-one-pint of water. You might confirm this with your chemist friend...or not. We can all easily use the 70% ispopropyl called for in your formula and move on. This isn't brain surgery.
BTW my bottle states:
"Isopropyl Alcohol 70% Active ingredient 70% alcohol by volume. Also contains water"
"Does not contain, nor is intended as a substitute for grain or ethyl alcohol"
Look at the label to see what you are using.>
AKA acetone??? >>Acetone is never found in rubbing alcohol. However, it may contain a small amount of ethanol.
I seem to be confused