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vinyl lovers

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Does anyone else here have a fetish for the old vinyl?

I've been buying vinyl for the past couple of years and have been shrinking down my CD collection. I had over 400 CD's last year but i think of those albums only 50 i'd think of as my own personal classics that i'd always return to. I've been slowly replacing those on vinyl and i'm in the process of clearing my last 150 CD's as i never use them anymore. I'm being more selective with what i buying, its very refreshing starting my music collection again over the past 2 years, and only true albums that i enjoy and love get the cut as i want to avoid all the filler i had with my CD collection.

I've learned to be careful when buying secondhand vinyl, usually only if its something i desperately want, has a good price and/or is in excellent condition will i consider buying them. I've become one of those people i found very annoying in record shops, expecting the vinyl very closely looking for imperfections but there is nothing more annoying/disheartening than bringing back a newly purchased vinyl home to find that its irreparably damaged.

Living in London i've used Rough Trade East a few times but they are not too good with genre's i'm interested in; punk, old school rock n roll and blues plus they can be a bit expensive but their service is great. Sister Ray is my favourite store, great selection and reasonably priced, Reckless records nearby also is a great little shop. I'm not too fond of music and video exchange; over priced, stickers which damage the packaging and their rating system leaves a lot to be desired, bought and an LP from them which was described as excellent but was jumping due to a bit of scuffing, bought it back only to be told they don't do returns as its up to us to check the condition before buying! they allowed me to exchange it this once. I left with a decent record but i won't go back.

I found Amazon, Norman records and volcanic tongue to be great online. If anyone knows of any other great shops or online stores i'd love to know.

I just noticed i have spent too much money on vinyl this month. I think this may get worse than my Neo Geo and import saturn habit i had in my teens :(

I'm sure there are many more vinyl lovers on rllmuk?

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Careful with modern reissues when you're replacing your 'classics'. A lot of them (often marketed as 180g audiophile jobs or whatever) are sourced from CD so if anything they're inferior to listen to and cost several times as much.

Found that out the hard and expensive way. Many times over.

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I would be, if I could get into it now, but it'd just be too expensive personally. Would need a preamp for a start as well as a turntable, then start buying all my favourites again, and CD would still piss all over it unless I spent a load. It just seems better not to start. Not to mention I have wobbly ass floorboards which would need to be sorted out also unless I got a wall mounted shelf.

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Careful with modern reissues when you're replacing your 'classics'. A lot of them (often marketed as 180g audiophile jobs or whatever) are sourced from CD so if anything they're inferior to listen to and cost several times as much.

Found that out the hard and expensive way. Many times over.

shit. Any way of knowing this beforehand?

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I would be, if I could get into it now, but it'd just be too expensive personally. Would need a preamp for a start as well as a turntable, then start buying all my favourites again, and CD would still piss all over it unless I spent a load. It just seems better not to start. Not to mention I have wobbly ass floorboards which would need to be sorted out also unless I got a wall mounted shelf.

i'm not sure, the rrp for new vinyl isn't too much more than that for cd's about £10 to £20 generally. And most of the albums you're after can be picked up for less than £10 2nd hand.

I don't have a world beating set up, i only have a small room so a retro style steepletone record player is all i have, it does the job and it means i don't have to worry about counter weights and amps, i guess if i ever get my own flat and i want to fill the whole room with noise i'll have to reconsider. but at the moment i'm just happy to lie down on my bed and listen to the music on a small player just feet away. I also store all my records in those 12" records cases you can get everywhere, it means i can just slide the cases under my bed when i'm done so space or wonky floor boards is not an issue.

P.S awesome collection you have there Rosco!

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shit. Any way of knowing this beforehand?

Sometimes Google helps and, although it's massively geeky, this forum can be great for reading up on stuff. It's about the only place I ever come across that sort of discussion. It's got a bit of a 'classic rock' feel to it but I've found people talking about all sorts of other stuff I've been after too.

Off the top of my head I would advise you to avoid 4 Men With Beards, Plain, Vinyl Lovers, Lilith, Get Back, Doxy, Cherry Red and Music On Vinyl (formerly Simply Vinyl). IIRC all those labels are pretty much just four different companies: one in the US, one in Italy, one in the Netherlands and one in Russia. The Italian and Russian ones are quite often in the realm of 'dubious' licensing as well. It's not that they never do a good job - some of Music On Vinyl's are actually very good - but those are the exception rather than the rule and they'll generally make a big deal of those specific releases being from the original master tapes or whatever.

Don't be suckered by the 180g thing in general either, it's bullshit. I've got so many paper thin 70s and 80s records that sound way better than your average 180g-er because they really fucking knew how to press records back then.

On the flipside you're generally in good hands with Sundazed, Light in the Attic, Rhino, Get On Down, Mofi, Speakers Corner plus the established indies like Domino or Matador and those affiliated with the majors - as Rhino are with Warners - although that can quite often be hard to figure out unless you happen to have worked for one of them or in a record shop or whatever. Again, all these guys generally make a big deal about their sources, either on the packaging or in the press release if you're buying online. Unless they're from something sub-optimal they've really no reason not to make a big deal out of it.

Years ago I decided to replace my CDs because 'vinyl sounds better' but if I'd known then what I know now I would've kept hold of the vast majority and bought much more carefully. Doing shit like chucking your CD copy of Houdini by The Melvins because you dropped however much on the AmRep LP only to find that it's pressed on like the worst recycled 90s vinyl and is actually way too long to fit on a single LP without sounding awful in any case is a total gutter. If you're into it for reasons of sound quality it really is a minefield.

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Id like to collect more than i do, mostly due to having little excess cash and all that. Love a good record tho, have a decent sized indie collection from the 90's and a few bits n bobs I've picked up along the way.

Im slowly ripping them into youtube as i was fed up with other peoples rips. http://youtube.com/weeklyrations

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Yeah. I have some classics, The Doors, Highway 61 Revisited, some Beatles n Flloyd stuff. I would have much MUCH more if I could afford it/had the space.

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I never knew all that stuff about reissues. I tend not to buy them purely because i'm a terrible snob, but i'm glad there's another reason. For a lot of records you can find older copies for similar price anyway. They might be a bit bashed up, but I don't mind that so much.

Rsdio, you have Black Woman on reissue, don't you? How is the quality of that? I want that on vinyl badly enough to buy a reissue, originals are really expensive.

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its all about the music for me, plus reissues are generally cheaper :) I wouldn't buy anything which isn't new online as i don't want to risk it. at least with reissues you're 99% certain it plays perfectly.

On the subject of second hand vinyl how do you judge whether it is good to buy? do you only go for ones that are described as excellent or near mint? I've been buying vinyl for a couple of years and only a few times have i had problems, unfortunately one time was last week, i bought a meat puppets lp for a fiver, it looked very good in the shop but when i bought it back and played it at home it kept jumping, after numerous attempts to clean it without prevail i noticed some scratches along the grooves, i had to bin it, heart breaking. Impossible to pick up such defects at the counter without a magnifying glass.

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Vinyls generally aren't always damaged but are just filthy dirty and filled with 40 years of grease and shit. Get a proper cleaning kit would be my advice. If it's skipping, adjust the arm - records usually have to be truly fucked to completely refuse to play properly.

I'm only snobby about re-issues and seldom about condition. Being a vinyl collector is bad enough, down the path of chasing mint condition stuff is where madness lies.

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A lot depends on how well the LP was pressed and generally the only way of guessing that is by it's era and label. Similar to what I was saying above, I've had records from the 60s, 70s, 80s and whatever that looked fucked visually but played better than a lot of brand new vinyl.

These Milty kits are great for cleaning by the way, I had one of their brushes before that but found the bristles quite often came out and got stuck in the grooves. It didn't seem to do a lot beyond charging the LP with a load of dust-attracting static either.

Rsdio, you have Black Woman on reissue, don't you? How is the quality of that? I want that on vinyl badly enough to buy a reissue, originals are really expensive.

Yeah, I was in the same boat - wanted a copy and it was basically the only realistic option. It's one of those 4 Men With Beards jobs that they do actually say is from the original master but IIRC it doesn't sound great (kinda muddy) but without an original to compare it to I dunno if that's as good as it gets.. Wouldn't surprise me if it was quite a budget recording session. I'll crack it out later and get back to you, it's been ages since I heard it.

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Vinyls generally aren't always damaged but are just filthy dirty and filled with 40 years of grease and shit. Get a proper cleaning kit would be my advice. If it's skipping, adjust the arm - records usually have to be truly fucked to completely refuse to play properly.

I'm only snobby about re-issues and seldom about condition. Being a vinyl collector is bad enough, down the path of chasing mint condition stuff is where madness lies.

don't say that! i don't want to think i binned a perfectly good record :)

Got any recommended cleaning kits? I've got something very similar to the milty kit that Rosco linked to.

I've found this on one of my internet searches, not sure if its any good; http://store.acousticsounds.com/d/58982/Spin-Clean-Record_Washer_System-Record_Cleaning_Machine.

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i'm having bad luck with the vinyl at the moment :( bought a few new ones today and one of them keeps jumping on a track, i've cleaned it with the vinyl cleaner and gone ove rit with the fine brush and each time it jumps at a different point in the track. Any ideas on how to solve it or should i just return i to the shop? which is always a pain

edit: I read on the net to let the track play while holding your finger on the stylus very lightly so its not heavy enough to cause it to slow down, it made the needle over ride whatever in the grooves was causing it to jump and got rid of it too. Plays fine now :)

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Sometimes Google helps and, although it's massively geeky, this forum can be great for reading up on stuff.

Thanks for the link to that forum. I've been reading it for the past couple of hours. I suppose that makes me a geek :)

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Switched back to vinyl a little while ago. Been buying all the classic stuff 2nd hand from a local shop. Most stuff I've nabbed for between 25p and £2. It's all been in excellent condition apart from the U2 War album which looked almost mint but has obviously been played on a deck with a completely fucked stylus that's been digging its own groove. Not sure how I'm supposed to have spotted that beforehand?

My vinyl does sound better than my CDs. My deck is a really old Dual going thru a cambridge audio phono stage and into a cheap yamaha AV amp but it sounds pretty sweet. Stevie Wonder's Songs in the key of life is probably the best pressing I have. Sounds amazing.

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The only time I've heard vinyl sound better than CD personally is when its on a really good system. When its on the budget side of things I think a £300 CD player will murder a £300 turntable. Sure some people prefer it because it might have a more fluid and analogue sound but I'm in two minds. I've heard some stunning digital and analogue setups ranging from a few hundred to a few thousand. For the effort dealing with cleaning vinyl, buying new releases for a silly price, the fact the media wears out eventually with continuous plays as well as the stylus, the storage space it takes up.. having to get up half way to turn it over, difficulty selecting tracks I just don't know.

I can appreciate its cool factor and I think that's what draws people to it, it's practically an obsolete format but then, so is CD I suppose, my birds brother was down over the weekend and he bought a fair bit of vinyl but didn't glance twice at my digital setup, I guess he's into the music and the cool factor of vinyl rather than how it sounds. Hey that's cool, but I like to weigh up the advantages and disadvantages and so far it's digital all the way, no question.

If I get some high paying job and sort out the floorboards then maybe down the line a preamp and turntable might appear, but eh I dunno.

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I'm not sure about that, i have some from the 70's like Lennon's Imagine and the Runaways which still sound amazing. If you look after them vinyl can live for a very long time it just requires more love than the compact disk to achieve this. Don't even CD's have a lifespan of 20 or so years?

Don't need an expensive set up, i use this;


Ignore the hipsters, they'll soon get bored and move onto the next fad, most buy it for the music. I started because i found a lot of the 50's/60's music just sounds far more superior in mono and through vinyl, stuff like Howling Wolf and Buddy Holly just never sound right on CD through stereo. Also many of the underground bands from the 80's only seem to get their stuff re-released or generally released altogether on vinyl.

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I didn't want to say it, but yeah. ... *cough*

Doesn't really matter if you enjoy it of course, but kinda reinforces what I think about it being a 'cool' format because any budget CD setup will sound better than that thing sadly.

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That deck is an abomination! Please buy a half decent 2nd hand setup, you wont regret it.

nah, i disagree the steepleton record players are pretty good for those on a budget/lack space.

that one is packed away, i have this in my room as it takes up minimal space and it sounds good. I'd love a better setup but don't have the space at the moment.

41I1lsokyFL._SL500_AA300_.jpg

but yes for audiophiles it would be a crappy beginners vinyl player. i should be looking to upgrade in the near future so if anyone knows of any decent intermediate turntables around £100 - £150 then please let me know :)

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If you buy a cheap integrated amp such as say, I dunno a technics for about £50 on ebay, that'll have a phono input usually. I'm not even sure that turntable comes with a cartridge to be honest. Sadly it can be an expensive game, but for say... £300 total, cheap integrated amp, a couple of bookshelf speakers on stands (a lot of people give them away nowadays as they just take up room), maybe a second hand pro-jekt turntable, you could have a really nice system for that money.

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If you buy a cheap integrated amp such as say, I dunno a technics for about £50 on ebay, that'll have a phono input usually. I'm not even sure that turntable comes with a cartridge to be honest. Sadly it can be an expensive game, but for say... £300 total, cheap integrated amp, a couple of bookshelf speakers on stands (a lot of people give them away nowadays as they just take up room), maybe a second hand pro-jekt turntable, you could have a really nice system for that money.

a quick internet search is recommending a Sony PS-LX250H Turntable, seems decent enough and can be picked up cheaply

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Seems alright for the money I guess, you'd still need an amp and speakers though I spose, it does get pricy. You might as well do it properly if you're going to also, like go for the pro-jekt instead, more money but the performance will be better.

http://compare.ebay....&var=sbar&cbt=y

Not bad though!

yeah i just saw that one it is tempting. Any ideas for a decent amp and speakers?

Edit: bought it :)

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