The Vinyl Decision

I thought I’d share a recent and short conversation I just had with a friend, on the decision on whether to get back into vinyl or not.  Any input to this discussion would be welcome.

A’s email to me:

“Having taken to picking up s/h vinyl LPs that grab my interest (& are cheap) lately, just ‘cos I kinda like the old skool thing – the trouble is that they are invariably scuffed & you lose the advantage!
What would a brand new vinyl LP sound like, I haven’t bought a NEW LP for decades.
Nowadays they are increasingly available but a tad expensive – although  you do get the download as well for modern convenience.
I couldn’t resist the brand new Bonnie Raitt album….2 x discs in a gatefold sleeve…aaah! Nostalgia heaven!
Back home from Norwich & straight to the turntable…………bleeding wonderful!
It could just be my wishing it so but I’d swear there is more warmth & growl in the playback pleasure….& NO SCRATCHES..!
Think I’ve found yet another expensive hobby that I can’t afford!
A.”
My response:
“I’m right with you here, been going through the same experience.  I bought Steve Winwood’s ‘Arc of a Diver’ and Working Week’s ‘Working Nights’ last week at the car boot up on Haldon Hill racecourse.  Both are very dirty and nasty sounding and I came to the conclusion it isn’t worth buying second hand vinyl as people selling from such places are probably the sort of people not to have looked after their music – let’s face it, if the vinyl was in good nick, they wouldn’t be selling it at a car boot sale.  It was really good to hear the albums again – actually the Working Week album reminded me that they were (IMO) a pretty average band but Steve Winwood is someone I always enjoy.

But I have played a couple of my old vinyls on the B&O 1200 I’m upgrading (sounds much better by the way).  Jam & Spoon’s ‘Tripomatic fairytales’ and Joe Cocker’s ‘Sheffield Steel’ sounded great, FULL of tone and musicality!  But the needle couldn’t keep up with the big groove modulations of any of my 45’s – disappointing as I really wanted to hear again Tony De Vit’s ‘Dreams’.
Surely it can’t just be our heads playing emotional, old-aging tricks on us?  Plus the artwork that comes with them is so enjoyable.  Maybe buying new vinyl is the answer (if we can afford it) as you get the artwork to put on the wall and can listen to clean digits (if not quite as nice to listen to as the vinyl).
Speaking of affording… I’m now starting the job of populating my amp’s printed circuit board so am updating my Parts List to find out what I have already and what I need to buy.  I try not to look at the cost summary at the bottom of the list!
Welcome back to the south-west,
Matt”
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About Matal

Hand made HiFi, photos, a friends poetry.
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