Who listens only to vinyl?

WHY, and what turntable set-up are you choosing to live with?
(This is NOT a vinyl versus digital thread, it's a lifestyle thread!)

Recently, I'm heading in this direction, mostly I think because I have never invested enough attention and money to bring up digital listening into the pleasure zone. I also like messing around with record cleaning and arms and cartridges, and worrying whether my TT belt needs replacing. And the sound of course!

If you are one of these vinyl-only people, how did you get there, and how do you feel about living with restricted access to a lot of newer recordings, both classical and other genres? Is it an issue for you?

[Pro-ject 2 Xperience with Shure v15 type IV-JICO SAS stylus]
I listen to vinyl only in my home and have for over 10 years. Didnt have an issue with access to newer recordings since my preference is classic rock from 60s and 70s, and jazz and blues from 50s and 60s. There was more music produced then that I could ever listen to in a lifetime. I have been buying some new releases and reissues as they come up.
My Cd is about as good as my vinyl, (which is very good all around)
I listen to Cds as the 'easiest' way to listen to music all day.
I use five disc changers, load them and forget about the machinery.
All my changers run to a DAC, the a tubed preamp i use just as a glorified 'buffer'.
My two turntables and 6,000 Lps get used when i am in the mood to fiddle around with Lps.

I have no sense of Lp being better or worse than CD. They have different qualities, and I enjoy both fully.
The main benefit of having and using both formats is the availability of used music in both formats. I can find the music i want sometimes in one, sometimes in the other. A lot of primary Jazz I have in both. (IE Miles Davis etc)
Jazz from the 40's and earlier is mostly CD, then 50's through 70's is mostly LP.. Then the 90's is all CD.. So i just buy what is available as i find it used.
My CD, Meridian 200-Metrum Octave, is very good but my vinyl is better. Tables are modified Linn LP 12 with Rega 1000 arm and Basis 2001 with Graham 2.2. Cartridges AT 33EV and Denon 304. It is of course much easier to get new material on CD. Let me recommend SALT FOR SALT by Brown Bird on LP as a new recording.
Not "only" but certainly about 90% of the time due to recordings I have that are not on CD, or that are nowhere as good on CD. Digital is convenient though and that reason accounts for the remaining 10%.
My "good" CD player (Proceed) died 10 years ago. Haven't replaced it yet because LP's keep me so musically involved. Fed up with the constant changes in Digital along with the rising cost of really good players, I decided to concentrate on just improving my LP playback while I ride out the digital storm. Now, once again, all digital as we know it will be outdated as we move on to streaming, flash storage, etc, and a bunch of other schemes I probably don't even know about, let alone understand. I now no longer have a budget for pricey HiFi, so digital will have to wait. I tried out a Music Hall CD 25-2... yuk. Bought and modified a Sony playstation 1 and that is all I need to satisfy me for the CD's I care about. For now, I've settled in with a Well Tempered Super table/Grado Master 1 and George Wright phono pre. going direct into vintage Fisher EL84 mono amps. Sweet, rich, colorful-but not too colored, transparent, clear, liquid, and... fun! Not your typical High End system, but very capable for the cost involved. In another room I use the same AR table I bought in High School back in the early seventies along with a Cary SLP 90 pre. and another pair of the same Fishers. This humble set up also delivers the musical goods. It's different, and obviously not quite as good, but every bit as involving and enjoyable. I'm so used to the extra effort required to live with vinyl that I don't even notice the difference. I grew up when that was all we had, so it just seems normal. I'll admit though. that setting up a new cartridge is getting less enjoyable than it used to be.
I have about 60gb of music on my hard drive--but listen to vinyl virtually exclusively. I like the rituals surrounding vinyl even though they can be seen as nuisances. I don't miss out on the new music because I don't follow it. There's so much music to explore and sticking with vinyl 'forces' one to explore it. A good percentage of the vinyl I have were just whimsical purchases that I probably would never have bought on cd. I am richer musically as a result. A case in point is Ry Cooder's 'Jazz'. Someone had mentioned it as a sounding good on vinyl so I bought it. Now I'm as Cooder obsessed as they come. Of course, the same might have happened if I had bought the cd but knowing myself I probably would not have done so.
I am almost 100% vinyl. I do have a CD player which I keep around for the occasional new CD and to play music that I like but don't have on LP. Of course, I also listen to CDs in the car, but for my main system CDs probably get less than 1% of my listening time.

The "lifestyle" reasons for my nearly all-vinyl listening are pretty straightforward.

* I have over 3000 LPs which I have been collecting for over 45 years. My CD collection is probably less than 200.

* My musical tastes are mostly rooted in the 1950s through 1970s, and since early issue LPs are nearly always better sounding than later issues and LPs always better than CDs, then LPs are the preferred way to enjoy my music.

* My phono playback gear is very good. My CD player is nothing special.

* My linestage no longer has a selector switch. It has a dedicated single-input so I have to move interconnect wires to hook up the CD player. Not a big deal, but it's easier just to spin the record player.

* And the obvious reason that playing records is just more fun.
It's a really good point.....that chasing vinyl can open one up to previously unknown musical riches and encourages whimsical exploration.

My discoveries: original Fifties mono vocal jazz recordings on the Bethlehem label, and most of Bruno Walter's Bruckner (60 cent thrift store purchases with Senior discount).
I have also come across some oddball records of wonderful interest such as Louis Prima's "The Wildest Show at Tahoe", which I never would have found in any other way.

If I read Gramophone magazine, I sometimes feel like the music world is passing me by, that is until I cruise my local vinyl store and (always) find great music.
I listen only to vinyl at home. On travel on in the car the only option is digital, as you know....
I really enjoy the never ending fiddling and tweaking associated with vinyl, because you can never get it perfect. There is always something to do or re-do; when you listen to other crazys' like us and have to try out a new or potential solution, which might even cause your vinyl rig to sound worse. My $0.02 worth !!!!
It's a really good point.....that chasing vinyl can open one up to previously unknown musical riches and encourages whimsical exploration.

My discoveries: original Fifties mono vocal jazz recordings on the Bethlehem label, and most of Bruno Walter's Bruckner (60 cent thrift store purchases with Senior discount).
I have also come across some oddball records of wonderful interest such as Louis Prima's "The Wildest Show at Tahoe", which I never would have found in any other way.

If I read Gramophone magazine, I sometimes feel like the music world is passing me by, that is until I cruise my local vinyl store and (always) find great music.
I am not sure one can really be considered to be the truest of music lovers when a vinyl only platform requires one to ignore the vast majority by far of music made in last 20 yrs. I have both and both have strengthes and unarguable weakness, like others noted the disc is supreme for ease, vinyl has a coolness of routine that gives a greater emotional connection for me when I am in that mood.
I would say my listening is about 75% to vinyl, 25% to digital. There is now a ton of music that is only available digitally, and I also usually have to listen to digital when I am listening to my own orchestra, as that is how we are recorded.
Cd's while puttering around the house and vinyl if sitting down listening.
I had a Linn CD transport. It died, seems to have a simple problem but try getting service info out of Linn!

However I don't really miss it. I have a large collection of LPs and its always in danger of taking over the house. LPs are lot easier to find today than they were 10 or even 20 years ago.
I don't think I'm ignoring music of the last 10-20 years with my vinyl only setup. Pretty much anything that I check out on iTunes that I like is at some point available on vinyl, although I'm listening to Jazz and inde music mostly and some electronic and hip hop. No classical, which to me may require some sort of digital setup to fully enjoy the vast sea of music out there. I've hooked up digital in many form, and very high price stuff too, and there's never any comparison, especially when you are talking about long term listening. A good test is to go digital only for 2 months and see how the length of your listening sessions goes down. It's just not as enveloping.
I stopped listening to CD (digital) more than 15 years ago. I am listening exclusively to vinyl. However, I do listen to MP3 in my car though.

CD and vinyl are two different formats. They do sound differently. I like the space and ambience of vinyl sound because I like acoustic music. Techno muisc with heavy synthesiser is not my cup of tea.

I listen mostly to old jazz and classical. I have only 500 to 600 LPs but it will take me a long long time to listen to them all due to the fact that I only have 5 to 6 hours a week to listen to music. Most of the time when I listen to music, I listen to my favourites during that 5 to 6 hours window. As a result, I still have a lot of LPs that I haven't listened to yet. I do buy some of the reissues that are done right. In my situation, I have plenty of music to listen to and I don't follow modern music much.

Additionally, there are a few tweaks I can do to adjust the sound with vinyl. A newly cleaned LP always sounds better. Playing with VTA can help dial in the sound with different pressings. I think it is fun playing vinyl.
I am with Hevac1, CD as background around the house,vinyl when sitting down to enjoy music as an activity.
95% vinyl 25% SACD less 1% RBCD. SACD close to vinyl at about 10% of the cost. Very few CDs are worth the listening. Sony ES5400 SACD. Lyra titan i, SME V SOTA Cosmos III.
Listening to Digital is Blasphemy
Mostly analog here. LPs and tuner, I have great classical and jazz stations here in Seattle. Only CDs once and a while.
95% vinyl for the past dozen years or so. You can check my system link for gear, but you'll see that it's modest by comparison with a lot of folks on this site. LP records just sound better and less fatiguing to me, and that's why I listen to them. Perfectly willing to listen to new material as mp3 or CDs or whatever, but as always the best stuff stands the test of time. And with a few thousand LPs, carefully selected, I've got on hand more than enough great material that falls into the category of fantastic music. Lots of superb new material on vinyl, by the way, and I pay attention to that stuff.

Wouldn't go so far as the mighty Syntax (maybe because I'm not [yet] spinning records with a system that compares to his incredible analog rig), but for me, like a bunch of others, the priority is not listening to a bunch of new stuff just to listen to new stuff, but to listen to excellent music via recordings that sound like actual music. LP records played on a decent system is a great way to accomplish this. IMHO, of course.
In the last year I listened exclusively to vinyl for 6 months until a friend, who was interested in buying some Martin Logan 'Stats asked if he could audition my setup. Being a digital only listener I spun a few CDs for the demo then afterwards went back to listening to LPs.
What does this tell us about the relative merits? Merely that I prefer analogue.

Some of the most profound words I've heard on the subject came from a magazine's interview of a 17 yr old(!) who'd been bitten by the bug who said, "With digital you can listen to music...but with analogue you EXPERIENCE the music." Well said that lad.
This doesn't mean that CD/Digital recordings cannot induce emotion or provide a decent listening experience, they can, but nothing brings those classics to life in the same way as a good LP - especially those which are analogue produced throughout the entire recording chain.

There is a practicality issue regarding availability of new releases, so I believe a degree of compromise is required. Not everyone can live entirely without Digital so the question of whether one should TRY to do so is debatable.
(If one was happy to buy only from S/H record shops then there is more than enough music to last a lifetime, so it can be done but if you are following new artists then you may prefer to have some digital replay capability?)
Digital is not completely offensive to the ear. You can live with it but you may not want to all the time...?
I believe the mind compensates according to the situation. I'll explain.

I took digital out of my home system because I like vinyl so much better there. However, digital is perfectly acceptable in my car, even low bitrate homemade CDs burned from mp3 files. I wouldn't dare play that stuff on my home system. It's the place that makes it okay, or not.

Then, there is the visual component of YouTube and other online sites, not to mention the rarity of some performances to be found there. An example would be Vanessa Mae's "Storm" performance. It isn't on vinyl, but if it was, it wouldn't hold my attention through to the end. It is on CD...yawn. Inspite of all that, the YouTube video always captivates me. My mind compensates for the sound because it is busy with the visuals.

Short answer? It depends.
I've had a CD payer hooked up to my main cd less for than 3% of the time in the past 5 years. Haven't had any digital hookup for several months now. So that's pretty close to exclusive analog. Also have a R2R deck I'd have used a lot more if a damn channel hadn't gone intermittent - it sounded phenomenal while it worked.

Was 28 years old when I first "discovered" vinyl in my 2ch system, and became immediately infuriated from having been lied to about digital's "perfect quality" for so long. That had a reactive effect, and thus an analog snob was born.

I DO kinda fondly remember my Meridian G08 purchased in 2004, but only because it steps out beyond the unlistenable hash of most digital players & DACs below that price point. That it was pitched to me as an "analog-like" CD player was a damn lie, and the $4.5K retail is way too much compared to what you'd get for that investment in vinyl playback. Though I'd gladly pick one up (or the 588) if they could be had for low-$1K used - then I'd be covered for those FEW albums I can't get on LP.

There is more good music on LP alone to last me a couple lifetimes, so I can't complain about being limited by exclusive vinyl playback - it renders the BEST sound quality for the MAJORITY of the available recordings of good music that's out there.
My CD player can go months at a time with out use. My vinyl rig is much better sounding. That makes it worth the extra effort.

I have not posted for many years but your post has prompted a reply. I have a custom CDL plinth with Lenco particulars, an Alphason HR-100S tonearm, and a Monster Cable Sigma 2000 MK2. cartridge. My Pre is a Rogue Magmum 99 with NOS tubes of my preference - amp is a McCormack Deluxe with Mods.

I never play cds even though I have a Jitter sink made by a well established designer.

Vinyl is the path for those seeking a higher plane. If you are not into vinyl you will never understand. It is the Alpha and the Omega of life.

The Bordeaux continues to call and I must obey. End of transmission.
I listen to only vinyl. In the past I would warm up my system with my CDP, dont even use it for that anymore.
Just a personal point. I recently upgraded my CDP to the ARC Ref CD-8, which is very very good. I think my vinyl set up is pretty decent too: VPI classic, ARC PH-7 phono pre and Sound Smith VPI Zephyr carty.

Here are the challenges I face. First, source material, be it CD or vinyl, can be a a challenge unto itself. Some of my CDs really shine on my rig, but many simply do not. I attribute this more to the CD than my system. The same is also true for my LPs, although by and large, my old collection from the 70s and 80s are a pleasure. So I bounce back and forth.

The second point is practical. I rediscovered vinyl about a year and a half ago. I liked it a lot and played it a lot. Just recently, as a couple of my threads will explain, I sent my Zephyr back to Sound Smith for a check and a retip. The cost wasn't too bad - about $250. But removing and resetting my cartrige was inconvenient. Also, Peter Ledermann of Sound Smith said that I will probably need to retip every 1000 hours, which is easy to rack up over a year or so.

So the bottom line is that I really enjoy both source inputs, subject to the quality of the CD and vinyl. But in light of the somewhat limited "shelf life" of my carty's stylus and the simple convenience of sitting down and listening to about an hour of music on CD versus 15-20 mins for each side of an LP, I'm kinda biased in favor of my CDP for now. Who knows -- if I pick up a stack of new LPs from my local vintage record store, I may shift back.
Like Tom_Hankins,I would warm up my system on a CDP while having my turntable spinning.
These old ears always preferred analog so I never really invested in digital gear.
I was looked at as a throw back to my kids and their friends.
Today,they want to borrow my cherished LP's to play on their analog gear.
What a difference a day makes !!!
I never changed from vinyl- i started in the mid-60's with a ratty all in one
stereo as a kid, when vinyl was the only viable mainstream format for
prerecorded music, and as time passed, and my hi-fi taste and budget
improved, i simply continued on the same path. CD was pretty horrible in
1984, and held no interest for me. Of course i have over the years acquired
a variety of CD and DVD players, but those were always for use on smaller
systems elsewhere in the house, or for the home theatre system.
I still have most of the records I bought as a kid, and the pile is now about
10,000 records. I don't feel limited by the format in terms of availability of
material, although the hunt for a particular recording can sometimes be
challenging. Many new pop records are being released on vinyl as well, so
if I want to get something 'new' that's less of a problem than ever. And, of
course, there are many wonderful reissues, often of old recordings made
without multi-tracking, that benefit from the low surface noise of a fresh,
high quality pressing. Of course, the real pain in the ass is the warm-up
time, cuing a record is never really an issue, since even if i am doing
something else, like reading, I am not bothered by the prospect of having to
get out of my chair and find another selection. (In fact, on a background
system elsewhere in the house, i rarely like the sequence of any playlist
assembled before hand, i am much more a creature of mood at the time i
am actually listening). Living with vinyl is a bit more of a pain, but worth it to
me. The sonics for critical listening are worth the effort.
In terms of equipment, for very long time, I used a Well-Tempered TT, it
was pretty trouble-free once set up properly, and sounded great. As the
system gradually improved, so did the turntable. At this point, I am using a
huge Kuzma, with the Airline arm- and my only real complaint is the air
pump for the arm, which is noisy, spits oil and is fidgety. Otherwise, even
this massive turntable with esoteric arm is pretty trouble free once it is set
up. (The smaller "Reference" by Kuzma may be the better table for most
purposes, given its built-in isolation, smaller footprint and lower price). I'm
sure there are plenty of good decks that offer close to the pinnacle these
days without getting too carried away. And note the number of people that
are using really 'period' turntables brought back to life -Garrard 301, Panny
SP-10 (still have mine from the early 70's and it still works, though it is not
set up right now).
Nothing but. 100% vinyl with no exceptions.
Vinyl only in my main system. I have two other, smaller systems for digital.
I'd say I listen to vinyl about 80% of the time. My main system has a CD player attached but it is almost never turned on. I only listen to digital for the convenience (in the car, on the plane, at work, etc.).

My second system does not have a turntable attached, so my only option is digital there.

My turntable set up is a Clearaudio Performance SEP with a Lyra Delos cartridge, and a Parasound Halo JC-3 phono preamp. I am very satisfied with the sound of it. I do not anticipate needing to upgrade it for quite a while.
I grew up on vinyl, always way better than cassette IMO. I couldn't even afford to get into CD until about 1992 or so. I bought into the perfect sound forever thing and lived happily with it until 2004 or so. Once I went back to the trouble of vinyl again I've been 99% or more vinyl. If you're really into audio as a hobby, I see no substitute for vinyl (and tubes) in a main system. Way too much work for a "kitchen or bathroom system", but if you're the sort of person who sits down and listens (really listens) to music you should try vinyl and do it right. That means a rather large investment upfront on a front end, cleaning vinyl, storage, the whole bit. It's "extreme audio" but digital is for home theater and "garage systems" IMO.
I have had a fairly sizable vinyl collection for years but never gave it much thought. My CD collection was 3 times the size, and as most people of my generation believed vinyl was a scratchy dead technology. A few years ago I purchased a decent system from a real estate client at the same time I was purchasing my own home and had the space for both a home theater and 2 channel music system. I mostly dismissed my Luxman turntable until I discovered I had not connected the ground wire to my pre-amp and the the buzz I heard when playing records was easily corrected. I was considering going the digital music route with my 2 channel system with a DAC and server, but became frustrated by the fact that there did not seem to be a digital option that would satisfy me. I bought a couple 180 gm LP's, fixed that grounding problem with my TT and the rest is history. I'm 80% vinyl for the last year at home and pretty much only purchase new re-issues and excellent condition used. I love the ritual with vinyl. It has renewed my enthusiasm in record collecting which has wained largely since MP3 has become popular.
Patrick, without getting into specific products (I'm pretty agnostic when it
comes to turntables, there are alot of great ones, and we are truly enjoying
a renaissance in products), the more time and effort you spend getting the
turntable sorted, the more you will get out of those grooves. It is truly
amazing how much musical information there is there, on records that are
ancient, and with good, not super expensive playback equipment to capture
it, you keep realizing the benefits.