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Getting good sound out of vinyl requires good equipment (expensive) and far more effort than digital. Unless you really love tinkering with electro/mechanical devices stick with digital.

I've been around long enough to have lived through the time when vinyl and reel-to-reel were the best mediums, and still have a grand old turntable, but 99% of my listening is via FLAC to DAC.

Vinyl can be fun, in a nostalgic sort of way, if you enjoy working hard for your music.
I disagree that good equipment has to be expensive. Even the lower midtier stuff from the likes of ProJect, Rega, etc gives one very decent sound. My friends jaws always drop at the sound of my modest setup; a ProJect XPression III played through teh phono stage of my RX-V1800 and throu my PSB Image T45s. It's more expensive than my digital set up. Maybe expensive is a relative comparison to the cost of digital.
 

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Discussion Starter · #62 ·
I disagree that good equipment has to be expensive. Even the lower midtier stuff from the likes of ProJect, Rega, etc gives one very decent sound. My friends jaws always drop at the sound of my modest setup; a ProJect XPression III played through teh phono stage of my RX-V1800 and throu my PSB Image T45s. It's more expensive than my digital set up. Maybe expensive is a relative comparison to the cost of digital.
I agree... it does not take tons of cash to find some good quality sound. yes it relative. I always wince when I see those 20K audio cables and I am just like wow.... I wonder if I would buy that if I just had stupid amounts of money... I doubt it....
 

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When you start talking about what each format is capable of and which sounds better and how it doesn't cost all that much to have a great sounding turntable setup let's start by locking down the system so the only variable is the price of the turntable/accessories verses the price of the CD player.
Brand new equipment only, what turntable/accessories (accessories would need to include any phono amps, cartridges, alignment tools...) will match any base model Bluray player that can be bought for $60 bucks every day at Walmart or Best Buy? Or if you choose a dedicated CD player lets go with the $150 Sony 5 disc changer.
I would really like to know what it takes in 2014 to have a turntable setup that could potentially match an entry level CD/ Bluray player.
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/smart-blu-ray-player/7829257.p?id=1218861012727&skuId=7829257&st=categoryid$abcat0102003&cp=1&lp=2
http://www.bestbuy.com/site/olstemp...=n&seeAll=&browsedCategory=pcmcat309300050003

Links to the gear would be appreciated.
 

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I dont think we can always go head to head price wise if one looks for good sound. That Sony CD player is not at the top of the heap when it comes to good sound. So I am not sure if you mean can we have a $150 table vs a $150 cd player then who knows, maybe, ease of use is in the cd player court but neither will really sound special. Now get to say $400 and the field could go either way.
 

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First off what evidence is out there to make you think the Sony CD player is lacking in any way when it comes to sound quality?
BD players are even less expensive but they will play CDs so lets go that route if you want.

The question is not complicated.
How much would it cost to get a turntable and any necessary accessories to get the equivalent sound quality that any run of the mill CD player or any low cost BD player can produce.

Several people are touting the SQ of turntables / vinyl over CD.
I want to know what it costs to achieve comparable SQ.

Which equipment is recommended and where is it available for purchase.
 

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I would also second what your saying, even a $70 CD player will outperform a $500 turntable if the source of the master being played are equal. Meaning that the CD and the LP were made from the same master.
 

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I would also second what your saying, even a $70 CD player will outperform a $500 turntable if the source of the master being played are equal. Meaning that the CD and the LP were made from the same master.
I disagree with you. First of CD and LPs cannot be made from the same master. There needs to be post processing done to fit the signal into the physical limits of the vinyl medium. Early CDs sounded extremely bad because they used masters from vinyl instead of mastering for CD. Also, the reverse is now true and some new vinyl sounds horrendous ...ie The Von Bondies.. "Love Hate and Ther's You" . The vinyl version sounds like the levels were set to high and the sound is terribly distorted. On the other hand, I own both the vinyl copy and the CD copy of Tom Petty' MOJO album. My turntable is a ProJect XPression III and is connected to a Yamaha RX-V1800 AVR through teh recevier's phono input. I use a Sony BDP-S360 Blu Ray player. Playing the vinyl version easily holds it own against the CD version.

The sound quality is highly dependent on the mastering as I demonstrated above. Simply debating which medium is better without addressing the mastering is totally pointless IMO.
 

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Oh, I dont disagree with you there. There are some great vinyl recordings that sound bad on CD and Vice versa but if the CD is mastered correctly with little compression the CD will sound better on a $70 CD player than the same LP on a turntable costing hundreds.
I have a friend who has a mid level JVC turntable and bought a cartage for it that cost $1000. I have a Telarc 1812 overture on LP and CD and the CD sounds WAY better than the LP using his turntable on my system.
 

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Oh, I dont disagree with you there. There are some great vinyl recordings that sound bad on CD and Vice versa but if the CD is mastered correctly with little compression the CD will sound better on a $70 CD player than the same LP on a turntable costing hundreds.
I have a friend who has a mid level JVC turntable and bought a cartage for it that cost $1000. I have a Telarc 1812 overture on LP and CD and the CD sounds WAY better than the LP using his turntable on my system.
I don't think we'll come to an agreement. :) My CD copy of MOJO does not sound in anyway better than my vinyl version.
 

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For purposes of better format conversations it would be reasonable to just throw mastering off the table and start the conversation where the mastering of each media type is equal.

Then we come to the theoretical limits of the media istself. Which is all well and good but if the manufacturing process of the media or the equipment used to playback the media on average never approaches what is theoretically possible then that becomes a mute point in itself.

3dB thanks for mentioning the turntable you think achieves equal SQ to the BD player.
Is the turntable tricked up with special cartridge or tonearm? Any mods added?
 

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For purposes of better format conversations it would be reasonable to just throw mastering off the table and start the conversation where the mastering of each media type is equal.

Then we come to the theoretical limits of the media istself. Which is all well and good but if the manufacturing process of the media or the equipment used to playback the media on average never approaches what is theoretically possible then that becomes a mute point in itself.

3dB thanks for mentioning the turntable you think achieves equal SQ to the BD player.
Is the turntable tricked up with special cartridge or tonearm? Any mods added?
It achieves it..not what I think it achieves. My friends used to kid me about turntables and vinyls and the days of the dinosaur so I blind fold them and switch between the CD and vinyl of the same recording and they can't tell from a SQ the difference between the two. My table is strictly stock. Not every album gives me this result so you really can't take mastering off the table.
 

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Vynil is both phisical and Analog media, by concept there is no way to beat an analog signal with a digital (0 and 1s) because there is no way to fill in the gap between the 0 and the 1. It's true depends mostly on equipment, $10 needle will sound worst than a diamond one. CDs are Digital and are 0s and 1s, although they are great, a flac imported from vynil have bettwe quality than the CDs.

Zef
 

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Vynil is both phisical and Analog media, by concept there is no way to beat an analog signal with a digital (0 and 1s) because there is no way to fill in the gap between the 0 and the 1. It's true depends mostly on equipment, $10 needle will sound worst than a diamond one. CDs are Digital and are 0s and 1s, although they are great, a flac imported from vynil have bettwe quality than the CDs.

Zef
Again, it depends on many factors including the master and how well the vynal is pressed. I've listened to so some lousy vynal and so really good ones. Also a CD also can be poor or well done.
 

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Vynil is both phisical and Analog media, by concept there is no way to beat an analog signal with a digital (0 and 1s) because there is no way to fill in the gap between the 0 and the 1. It's true depends mostly on equipment, $10 needle will sound worst than a diamond one. CDs are Digital and are 0s and 1s, although they are great, a flac imported from vynil have bettwe quality than the CDs.

Zef
All due respect, this is not quite correct. A standard 16-bit digital signal has 65,536 possible levels, and once the digital signal has been converted to analog, the tiny gaps between those levels end up becoming noise that is so far below the signal level (96 dB) that only in the rarest of conditions can the ear hear it, if ever. The noise level of vinyl, at best, is far higher.

However, as tonyvdb has stated, the ultimate sound quality level of music delivered on either media is dependent on many factors.
 

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A good vinyl rig is hard to beat by any cd media
Considering most music is mastered digitally now that comment is rather one sided and untrue. It is fully dependent on how well it is mastered to CD. A well mastered CD will out preform vinyl if its done correctly.
 

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A good vinyl rig is hard to beat by any cd media
In my opinion....

I will agree (my high-end vinyl experience is admittedly limited) that when all conditions are right - a good recording/mastering/pressing on a good rig - if you don't hear the "needle drop" you can not tell the source is vinyl vs. digital.

When someone says that a worn or less-than-optimum vinyl recording is still better than digital, well, you lose me there.:bigsmile:

As has been said already, there are many, many conditions, including mixing & mastering for vinyl vs for digital, etc.
 

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I run mostly vinyl these days. I listen to a lot of doom, psychedelic, and stoner metal; and most of the bands use vinyl as the primary release format. Usually it's 12" LP plus a bandcamp download.

I personally prefer vinyl for the experience that it provides. First of all the art is so much better, sometimes even screenprinted. Some people knock on the whole colored vinyl thing but I love it! I've got everything from translucent neon pink to clear blacklight reactive to cool multicolor splatter designs. It's just another cool addition to the art of the album.

I think the main reason I prefer vinyl in the inconvenience. You read that right, I prefer the inconvenience. Digital and even CD is so convenient that it doesn't make listening to an album an event, you can skip tracks and shuffle all willy-nilly. With vinyl I find myself sitting down and focusing on listening to whole albums straight through. It makes music the main event like it should be, not just something in the background.
 

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I listen to a mix of vinyl, CDs, and digitized vinyl (24 bit uncompressed wav).

Most of my records (about 300) are pre-1984 when family took over my time.

I have both records and CDs that I believe are superior.

From a technical standpoint, CDs have the edge on background noise and dynamic range, but vinyl has the edge of frequency response due to the brick-wall filter with CDs. Neither is sufficient to cause me to abandon the other media.

Neither technical advantage surmounts the all of the requirements before the media is manufactured.

In the past few years I've started collecting more albums from thrift stores. Most albums are poorly taken care of but occasionally I'll have a find like a couple weeks ago when I got Freddie Hubbard Skydive in pristine condition for $1.00 and it all is worth the effort.

I find that mostly I listen to CDs or music off the NAS when I'm cooking or working around the house.

When I play records, I'm setting down just listening.

Vinyl has become an experience. It wasn't always like that, back in college we played records at party's and they were background music. No one just sat and listened to the music at a party.

On the other hand, I would play a cassette tape while studying because I didn't have to get up and flip the album over when it reached the inner groove.
 
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