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The VINYL Thread!

Old 02-16-24, 11:31 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by Paff
Is that the one from a few years ago on RSD? Because if it is, I'm glad I passed. I held it in my hands for a bit, because I got shut out on all the titles I did want, but ultimately put it down because I saw it was a concert from the early 2000s, and not a vintage 80s Echo show.
I don't know about that particular LP but the ones that I have are the 2020 UK reissue of Heaven Up Here and the 2022 UK reissue of Songs To Learn And Sing. Not the best quality at all, though not quite as disappointing as the Furs reissues. I sold off the 4 that I bought and replaced them all with the original pressings from the 80s. The one Bunnymen album I have that I'm happy with is the 2019 double-vinyl release of The John Peel Sessions 1979-1983. It pairs up nicely with the Clan Of Xymox Peel Sessions album that I have.
Old 02-20-24, 06:31 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Does anybody have this set?
Who's Next / San Francisco 1971 Who's Next / San Francisco 1971

I already have the original vinyl and CD of Who's Next but I'm wondering if it's worth picking up for the remastering and live performances.
Old 02-20-24, 06:45 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by X
Does anybody have this set? Who's Next / San Francisco 1971

I already have the original vinyl and CD of Who's Next but I'm wondering if it's worth picking up for the remastering and live performances.
I don't have this set but it's getting good reviews on the Steve Hoffman forums. The $59.00USD price on Amazon right now is the lowest it's been on there since it came out last year. It sounds like a pretty good deal. One thing to note, though, is that the vinyl appears to be housed in paper sleeves rather than the newer anti-static ones.
Old 02-21-24, 12:59 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by Toby Dramit
I don't have this set but it's getting good reviews on the Steve Hoffman forums. The $59.00USD price on Amazon right now is the lowest it's been on there since it came out last year. It sounds like a pretty good deal. One thing to note, though, is that the vinyl appears to be housed in paper sleeves rather than the newer anti-static ones.
Thanks for the info, the reviews do look good. The Who is one of my top couple favorite bands and Whoís Next is what first got me into them. Itís a great album for driving too.

Iím particularly interested in the live performance. Many years ago I went to two of their shows and they were amazing. My ears were ringing for a couple days after the first one so I came prepared with stuffing to put in my ears for the next one They still suffered for a while. I guess Iíll have to crank up the volume for this concert set to listen properly.

And thanks for reminding me about picking up some new sleeves. I also need them for some older albums that have damaged ones or didnít even come with sleeves.
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Old 02-21-24, 01:04 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by Toby Dramit
One thing to note, though, is that the vinyl appears to be housed in paper sleeves rather than the newer anti-static ones.
Ugh, I hate when record companies do that. Anytime I get a record like that I have to carefully pull it out of the paper sleeve, trying to avoid scratches, and put it in a poly-lined sleeve. That especially shouldn't be happening with more premium releases, but it often does.

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Old 02-21-24, 01:52 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by cultshock
Ugh, I hate when record companies do that. Anytime I get a record like that I have to carefully pull it out of the paper sleeve, trying to avoid scratches, and put it in a poly-lined sleeve. That especially shouldn't be happening with more premium releases, but it often does.
Yup, I can't stand it either. I picked up the Tragically Hip 25th Anniversary Phantom Power boxset a little while ago and all 5 of the vinyl albums were in traditional paper sleeves. Was not impressed, especially at that price point. It's why I keep extra sleeves on hand, just in case.
Old 02-21-24, 02:36 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Oh yeah, I have a stack of poly-lined paper sleeves (in black and in white, depending on which one suits the album art better) plus a bunch of plastic outer sleeves. But recently I've being getting some albums in thick oversized jackets (like the Television Marquee Moon I mentioned above and the huge monstrosity that is Nine Inch Nails The Fragile Definitive Edition) and I need to find some oversized outer sleeves for those. This hobby never stops costing me money.
Old 02-21-24, 03:01 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

It was A LOT cheaper when we were in junior high school ...
Old 02-21-24, 03:10 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Iíve been in need of sleeves (both inner and outer) for close to a year. Just bought the Fiddler on the Roof OST and Cheap Thrills from Big Brother and the Holding Company for $5 each. Both play very well but are in their original paper sleeves from the 60s 😬
Old 02-21-24, 05:11 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by Toby Dramit
It was A LOT cheaper when we were in junior high school ...
That's for sure, I paid $4.49 CDN for my first KISS record (Rock and Roll Over) at K-mart back in 1978. Even during high school (1980s) I could buy new records for under 10 bucks (except European imports which cost $13-16 dollars, again in Canadian currency). I try to wait for deals (except for limited run stuff), hell I bought the remastered vinyl of Rock and Roll Over a few years ago from Deep Discount's "Bargain Bin" and it cost me less than six bucks, less than the price I paid in 1978 after adjusting for inflation.
Old 02-21-24, 05:48 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by cultshock
That's for sure, I paid $4.49 CDN for my first KISS record (Rock and Roll Over) at K-mart back in 1978. Even during high school (1980s) I could buy new records for under 10 bucks (except European imports which cost $13-16 dollars, again in Canadian currency). I try to wait for deals (except for limited run stuff), hell I bought the remastered vinyl of Rock and Roll Over a few years ago from Deep Discount's "Bargain Bin" and it cost me less than six bucks, less than the price I paid in 1978 after adjusting for inflation.
My first album was KISS Destroyer back in '76. Pretty sure it was a birthday present. All through junior high ('79-'82) I would take my allowance money and spend it on LPs and 45s at Mister Sound or Sears at Meadowlark Mall (before West Edmonton Mall was built). I still have a lot of them. Most are in good shape but there are some (including Destroyer) that are not. I played the shit out of my 70s KISS records when I was a kid. Will have to replace them with newer vinyl at some point ... Destroyer and Hotter Than Hell will be the first two when the time comes.
Old 02-22-24, 11:30 AM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

I still have my old KISS records too, in various states of condition. If you are thinking of replacements, the 2014 vinyl remasters are overall excellent quality and sound, in many cases they sound quite better than the original versions. I've been buying them over the years when I stumble upon good deals, I got about half of them so far.
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Old 02-29-24, 12:28 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by Geofferson
^ Nice, what are you switching from? I'm using the 2M red cart right now -- I do like it, but curious how an upgrade would sound.
The Ortofon 2M Blue has had a price reduction. It's $189 at Amazon. The stylus is $159 there so it makes sense to just buy the entire cartridge.

I've been reading that you can put a Bronze cartridge on a Red/Blue cartridge and get an improvement, of course not quite up to the full Bronze performance. But I'm thinking of going another way and getting a A-T VM540ML to replace my Blue. I've been doing some research and it appears that the A-T stylus's shape is better for tracking difficult grooves and reducing vinyl surface noise/clicks/pops. Does anyone here use that cartridge?
Old 02-29-24, 12:37 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by X
The Ortofon 2M Blue has had a price reduction. It's $189 at Amazon. The stylus is $159 there so it makes sense to just buy the entire cartridge.

I've been reading that you can put a Bronze cartridge on a Red/Blue cartridge and get an improvement, of course not quite up to the full Bronze performance. But I'm thinking of going another way and getting a A-T VM540ML to replace my Blue. I've been doing some research and it appears that the A-T stylus's shape is better for tracking difficult grooves and reducing vinyl surface noise/clicks/pops. Does anyone here use that cartridge?
I don't use it, but would be interested to hear your results, if you go that route. I'm currently running the Ortofon 2M Blue.
Old 02-29-24, 12:59 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

I'm VERY happy with my Blue. I didn't buy the whole cart though, I just got a Blue stylus for my Red cart
Old 02-29-24, 01:16 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by Paff
I'm VERY happy with my Blue. I didn't buy the whole cart though, I just got a Blue stylus for my Red cart
I am too, but you know how it goes... the constant tweaking to get the best performance for a reasonable price. The A-T cartridge is supposed to have a smoother, less harsh high-end sound, and due to the stylus shape it wears the stylus and the record less. I'm mostly interested in reducing the vinyl noises as I digitize my records. Post-processing out the clicks and other vinyl noise is time-consuming.

I've been upgrading recently, getting a Schiit Mani 2 to replace my previous preamp, a Motu M4 (amazing unit for the price!) to replace the previous A-D converter, a Schiit Magni+ (currently on closeout sale) for a headphone amp, etc., and it's sounding pretty good. So now I'm at the point of upgrading the phono cartridge since everything else is higher quality. I'm afraid after that, it'll be new headphones.
Old 02-29-24, 09:32 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

X, stop upgrading. Spend that money on records instead.

Half kidding there. Half. I like the occasional upgrade too. When I saw the price of the Blue had dropped, I didn't know that was a permanent price drop, so I just pounced on it despite being unemployed at the time. But I want to be sure I'm listening to records, too. To make the upgrades worth it. And I actually need to spend more time listening to records rather than buying them. I have so many recent purchases that have gotten a single spin (some even less!), and I say, "Wow! That's a great record!" but then it comes off the turntable because I have other new purchases to listen to as well. Solution, stop buying so many records, listen to the ones I already have. Cuz' there's a lot of 'em.
Old 02-29-24, 09:57 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Iím buying very little these days (The Who set being an exception) but Iím more enjoying my older records and trying to get the best sound out of them. And digitizing them for car listening.

I ordered the A-T cartridge and a new headshell and was close to pulling the trigger on a new AKG headphone but Iíd like to listen to some before I buy one. In the old days you could go to someplace like Pacific Stereo and try out a dozen headphones. I donít know where you can do that anymore.
Old 03-01-24, 09:55 AM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by X
The A-T cartridge is supposed to have a smoother, less harsh high-end sound, and due to the stylus shape it wears the stylus and the record less.
Yeah, this seems to be a big advantage of their Microline stylus. The shape is apparently very similar to that of the cutting stylus used to cut records and can reach parts of the groove other styli cannot. Please let us know your thoughts on how well it works once you've had time to play with it for awhile, I'm very curious.
Old 03-01-24, 11:39 AM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

I'm interested in hearing how the A-T is as well. Coincidentally I believe it was the thread below on the Steve Hoffman forum where I chose my current DL-110 over the A-T as I was contemplating one or the other at the time. I went with the 110 because it was an entry level MC cart and I wanted to make the leap from MM.

Help me pick a cartridge! | VM540ML vs. DL-110 | Steve Hoffman Music Forums
Old 03-04-24, 06:02 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Originally Posted by Geofferson
I'm interested in hearing how the A-T is as well. Coincidentally I believe it was the thread below on the Steve Hoffman forum where I chose my current DL-110 over the A-T as I was contemplating one or the other at the time. I went with the 110 because it was an entry level MC cart and I wanted to make the leap from MM.
That DL-110 looks like a nice cartridge! I've had a MC cartridge on my SL-10 for a long time and liked it a lot. Unfortunately, it's a p-mount and I even have a new one sitting around with no other turntable that can use it.

So far I'm very happy with the Audio-Technica VM540ML. I got the version that comes with the headshell since I didn't have another headshell around and I wanted to keep the Ortofon 2M Blue easily available for A/B testing.

As far as sound, it needs more play time to break in and critical listening before I can say anything definitive, but I notice that the sound seems smoother, with less high-frequency emphasis than the Blue. This could also have to do with the capacitance value of the cartridge which is lower than the Blue's. I haven't adjusted the preamp switches to adjust for that yet. Also, I'm looking into adjusting the vertical tracking angle which may not be ideal yet. The lower output of the A-T (4mV vs 5.5mV) may require that I do some amplification of the preamp's output for recording as well but it seems adequate. So far, so good.

I think the vinyl surface noise may be lower with the new cartridge as well, but I haven't specifically tested that yet. When I first tried the A-T on the new Who's Next album I got I found the most remarkable thing about the cartridge so far. The "Won't Get Fooled Again" track was the only one with an objectionable click on the entire record -- and it was a big one. I tried brushing that area of the record (didn't wet it) but it remained. So I tried that track first to see how the new cartridge would handle it. I heard the click and then the sound suddenly got completely garbled and very low volume. I thought it might have killed the needle or something. I looked at the needle and it had a load of gunk on it. I cleaned it off and replayed the track and the click was gone! Very impressive, since I've played that track at least 3 times before with the Blue. I also tried my 1812 Overture that has real cannons recorded and is almost impossible to track. It did much better than the Blue which I had tried unsuccessfully with differing tracking forces, but it still skipped a bit with the A-T. I didn't mess with the tracking force of the A-T yet, keeping it at 2g, but I'll get to that later.
Old 03-04-24, 09:52 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

I have an Audio-Technica VM540ML as well and like it a lot. Eliminates inner groove distortion quite nicely and sounds fantastic.

I run any new - or secondhand - vinyl I buy through a Spin-Clean washer before I play it for the first time. Then an anti-static brush followed by a sticky-adhesive roller to pick up whatever dust or debris remains and then clean my stylus after every few records. There's no way I'd want to have a big ball of goop stuck to the needle like I used to have all the time when I was a teenager ...
Old 03-05-24, 10:24 AM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Thanks for the reviews, guys. I will look into this stylus as I do plan on upgrading soon, I'm overdue.

Regarding that click that you got rid of, I'm guessing that because the A-T can get deeper into the groove it managed to pull the gunk right out while your previous stylus just kind of rode on top of it.

Old 03-09-24, 07:31 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Does anyone have a preferred test record thatís good for cartridge alignment/anti-skating/etc. testing? Iím looking at these:

Ortofon Test Record Ortofon Test Record

Ultimate Analogue Test Ultimate Analogue Test

Check New Signals Recordings Test Check New Signals Recordings Test


Iím always trying to squeeze out the best performance from my equipment but those seem pretty expensive for such infrequent use.
Old 03-09-24, 09:17 PM
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Re: The VINYL Thread!

Sorry, don't have any experience with test records. I just use a digital stylus gauge to set the tracking force and a protractor tool to check the cartridge alignment. Pretty basic, I know.






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