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So in 2020 how do you know your analog rig sounds great?


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So in 2020 how do you know your analog rig sounds great? do you compare to the same CD or digital file? this would be the wrong aproceh as we should all know digital is better in every way over vinyl but to this day a good vinyl system still offers better music? 

 

My source is either Linn LP-12, Ittok II, DV-XX2 MkII, P-75 Mk4 or Roon network vis my DEQX HDP-5. I find that most time is vinyl (500 LP's) while I have 13467 albums in my digital library. 

 

I have not compared any digital files to the same vinyl as this would be un fair we all know digital is better so how do you you know the vinyl analog is sounding great?

 

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Really, this is just the same old chestnut of digital v vinyl argument, just framed a different way and that is why all my responses here in this thread have been with tongue planted firmly in the che

Well, my ears aren’t painted on, so I guess the answer is pretty easy!?   Cheers,   Keith

In every case where I have both a CD version and a good condition LP, my vinyl system utterly wipes the floor with my digital version. Recent cases in point:   Propellerheads: Decks and

Easy vinyl wins for overall enjoyment, bit like going to a live event as it takes some amount of effort for both but in this case it's  to usher the album onto the turntable, cue the arm and drop the needle unlike digital where you press play and obtain instant gratification but hey that's just me and my opinion which is practically worthless in today's currency

Edited by Tubularbells
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18 minutes ago, artaudio said:

 so how do you you know the vinyl analog is sounding great?

 

Answer is you enjoy it more than digital, that's all that matters

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Stating the bleeding obvious, my analogue rig sounds great when I’m really enjoying the music, but that doesn’t always happen, my mood, the quality of the recording etc. I do compare my analogue to my digital, it makes sense really as I have built both to my preferred sound so they are very similar in some respects, and they both sound awesome IMHO.

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22 minutes ago, artaudio said:

So in 2020 how do you know your analog rig sounds great? 

 

Well, my ears aren’t painted on, so I guess the answer is pretty easy!?

 

Cheers,

 

Keith

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13 minutes ago, Tweaky said:

Answer is you enjoy it more than digital, that's all that matters

So you wouldn’t enjoy digital if it is better than analogue?

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2 minutes ago, awayward said:

So you wouldn’t enjoy digital if it is better than analogue?

You mean, hypothetically speaking of course??

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I don’t have the patience for digital. 
 

Need the commitment of physically moving to change LP sides to listen through multiple songs on the same album.

 

Oh, and at least 50% is appearances. The album art is very entertaining to look at. 

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This really doesn't regard digital, how do you really know in 2020 that your analog really sounds that good... how do you know how to come to the need to upgrade your analog rig? how do you know you need to upgrade? is it digital that tells you that your analog rig doesn't cut the grade or is there some other measure? 

 

i'm just getting back into the whole vinyl thing after many years away... 40y plus in the audio industry sales, design etc and still amassed how good vinyl sounds but is my rig good enough or needs upgrade. I know digital very well and am very happy with where it is currently.

 

my question is how do you know your analog rig is correct? really hard with no dealers like back in the 80's when you could compare turntables.

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I have a fairly simple rule. Once I buy an LP I remove it from my Tidal library. So if I want to listen to that album I have to listen to the LP. That said I have albums in my Library that I have no intention of buying the LP. I find that I need to be in the mood to go through the whole ritual of playing an LP. So sometimes I have days where I’m listening only to LPs and I’ve also gone days playing off Tidal only. Today is a digital day. 

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5 minutes ago, artaudio said:

This really doesn't regard digital, how do you really know in 2020 that your analog really sounds that good... how do you know how to come to the need to upgrade your analog rig? how do you know you need to upgrade? is it digital that tells you that your analog rig doesn't cut the grade or is there some other measure? 

 

i'm just getting back into the whole vinyl thing after many years away... 40y plus in the audio industry sales, design etc and still amassed how good vinyl sounds but is my rig good enough or needs upgrade. I know digital very well and am very happy with where it is currently.

 

my question is how do you know your analog rig is correct? really hard with no dealers like back in the 80's when you could compare turntables.

In this hobby I don’t think we really need a trigger to upgrade. 

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Don't compare to digital is probably number one. Two different animals and there is no better, just different. Are you enjoying when you listen? Do you sit back and think 'geez that sounds nice', for most albums? Or does it kinda bore you and you kinda hesitate before changing sides? Do you want to spin up another record after the first finishes? These are the questions to ask yourself ;)

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1 minute ago, Andrews_melb said:

@Cardiiiii nice point about removing from tidal, i see the point in that. 
what about if you want to hear the album in the car or somewhere the turntable isnt?

Tidal/Roon is also used to discover new music and play music in the car/exercising, etc. Also, to answer your specific question about upgrading, I have a road map of upgrades in my head and I usually pull the trigger as and when things pop up for sale in the classifieds. Comparison of analogue vs digital isn’t a trigger. 

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9 minutes ago, Cardiiiii said:

Once I buy an LP I remove it from my Tidal library. So if I want to listen to that album I have to listen to the LP.

No worries, I just got confused by this. if its removed from your library on tidal you dont have easy access to that album in the car. I dont have Roon though.

 

and on the OPs post, id say just sitting back and enjoying the LP is all i need to know that im happy enough with my set up.

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"So in 2020 how do you know your analog rig sounds great?"

 

The same way as in every year through to 2019.

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1 hour ago, artaudio said:

my question is how do you know your analog rig is correct?

 

Mmmm - to me this is an f'ing stoopid Qu.  :P

 

A system - whether analogue or digital - is never 'correct'.  All it is … is either better - or worse - than what it was before you made a change.

 

The latest change to my 4-way active system is to replace the miniDSP unit I was using with a different, digital-only miniDSP unit - which required me to buy 4x DACs (to get 8x analogue output channels, feeding my amps).

 

So the change is that I am now - whilst listening to vinyl - using better-quality DAC chips than are included in the miniDSP products.  :thumb:

 

The improvement in SQ is substantial!  :)

 

Andy

 

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Just recently spent over 10k upgrading my LP12.  I know it’s sounds great because its so revealing that 90% of  vinyl pressings sound crap. To me high quality digital sounds more consistent, but I must admit that the premium quality vinyl pressings sound out of this world.

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37 minutes ago, andyr said:

 

Mmmm - to me this is an f'ing stoopid Qu.  :P

 

A system - whether analogue or digital - is never 'correct'.  All it is … is either better - or worse - than what it was before you made a change.

 

The latest change to my 4-way active system is to replace the miniDSP unit I was using with a different, digital-only miniDSP unit - which required me to buy 4x DACs (to get 8x analogue output channels, feeding my amps).

 

So the change is that I am now - whilst listening to vinyl - using better-quality DAC chips than are included in the miniDSP products.  :thumb:

 

The improvement in SQ is substantial!  :)

 

Andy

 

You know, I think there is an argument that you are actually listening to a digital system ;) 

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I am not sure how many albums  nowadays are recorded in pure analog and cut vinyl without digital processing, most modern studios record music under digital format and cut back to vinyl to my impression, i don’t see the vinyl discs  explicitly advertise about the processing steps, 

 

so Vinyl would sound good for only 10%of music as many people share and agree. But the 10% would not stop people to run into vinyl, just like we go a few times per year for fine dining and the rests are bar/pub/food court/normal restaurants
 

Edited by ikhuong
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1 hour ago, andyr said:

 

Mmmm - to me this is an f'ing stoopid Qu.  :P

 

A system - whether analogue or digital - is never 'correct'.  All it is … is either better - or worse - than what it was before you made a change.

 

The latest change to my 4-way active system is to replace the miniDSP unit I was using with a different, digital-only miniDSP unit - which required me to buy 4x DACs (to get 8x analogue output channels, feeding my amps).

 

So the change is that I am now - whilst listening to vinyl - using better-quality DAC chips than are included in the miniDSP products.  :thumb:

 

The improvement in SQ is substantial!  :)

 

Andy

 

It is a very strange question isn't it.

 

Correct is different for different listeners, and what is correct for some is not correct for others so in essence you are correct, Andy...in that it is never correct, but at the same time it is.

 

A question that has an answer and no answer O.o

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In every case where I have both a CD version and a good condition LP, my vinyl system utterly wipes the floor with my digital version.

Recent cases in point:

 

Propellerheads: Decks andsrumsandrockandroll

Buena Vista Social Club

Singles OST

 

Night and day difference.  The CD's will only get a run when I want to listen in the car, or when there is a need to not be flipping album sides (background music during dinner for instance).

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12 hours ago, artaudio said:

this would be the wrong aproceh as we should all know digital is better in every way over vinyl but to this day a good vinyl system still offers better music? 

 

How do you figure that?

 

In my situation my vinyl rig does sound better than my digital.

 

There are also plenty of systems that I've heard where this is the case too though this is not to say where some systems the digital may sound better where the main focus has been on the digital in building the system.

 

To answer your question comparing your vinyl to your digital is probably a decent benchmark in judging your vinyl playback as the rest of the system is a constant.

 

The other way is to listen to other vinyl based systems and then basically listen to where the weaknesses are in your vinyl playback to see which areas can be improved.

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20 hours ago, artaudio said:

 

we all know digital is better so how do you you know the vinyl analog is sounding great?

 

Really, this is just the same old chestnut of digital v vinyl argument, just framed a different way and that is why all my responses here in this thread have been with tongue planted firmly in the cheek. There are those here that know that vinyl reproduction is far superior to digital and there are those poor deluded individuals here that think digital is a better medium.:winky: And @artaudio, you say you have 40 years in the audio business, so I think you should probably be answering the question, not asking it.O.o

 

Cheers,

 

Keith

Edited by cheekyboy
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9 hours ago, muon* said:

It is a very strange question isn't it.

 

Correct is different for different listeners, and what is correct for some is not correct for others so in essence you are correct, Andy...in that it is never correct, but at the same time it is.

 

A question that has an answer and no answer O.o

 

Very Zen, Ian.  xD  Did you get stuck into the sake with your sushi, for dinner?

 

Andy

 

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My vinyl rig wipes the floor with the digital. Vinyl is as detailed with same bass punch as digital but the vinyl just fills the room whereas the digital has a wide but flatter sound stage. My vinyl chain is totally analog. Ok it does cost more money to get the vinyl sounding better than digital. When I had the Rega RP8/Aphetta 2 I could never get it sounding better than my digital, the SP10 / EPA100 / EPC 205 changed this in a heat beat. So setup does make a huge difference.

 

I have Pink Floyd The Wall in 3 versions

1979 UK 1st pressing,  1983 Pink Floyd Dance Songs 180g Japanese pressing digitally mastered and CD version.

 

The UK pressing is soo much better than either of the others. What is interesting is the 1983 LP is audibly very close to the CD.

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14 hours ago, Telecine said:

You know, I think there is an argument that you are actually listening to a digital system ;) 

 

Well … I guess you could say that, John!  :)

 

But the source is still analogue - and as St Ivor preaches … it's the source that's key!  xD

 

Andy

 

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17 minutes ago, andyr said:

 

Well … I guess you could say that, John!  :)

 

But the source is still analogue - and as St Ivor preaches … it's the source that's key!  xD

 

Andy

 

Well St Ivor has gone digital with his phono stage and preamp, so maybe you are a trend setter.

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I'm very much in St Ivor's church ?? (whether it is analog or digital

 

Both analog and digital sides of things are pretty good here. Funny though, I was listening to a jazz fusion album off the NAS the other day thinking this is pretty good digital experience, great sound stage, instrument delineation, inner low level detail, plenty of rhythm. Then I realised that it was a 96/24 rip I made from the LP vinyl version a couple of years ago. The source never lies  ??

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@artaudio ,if you have to ask the question "does my rig sound great", are you really saying it's time to upgrade my rig? 2020 or whenever!

Edited by wen
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There are too many assumptions stated as fact in the OP that I couldn't even be bothered with a detailed answer. Ask yourself this, are you able to even hear the difference between a digital and analogue recording? It's obvious to some!

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1 hour ago, Telecine said:

Well St Ivor has gone digital with his phono stage and preamp, so maybe you are a trend setter.

 

Is that so, John!  I hadn't caught up with that particular tidbit.  :thumb:

 

Andy

 

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19 hours ago, awayward said:

So you wouldn’t enjoy digital if it is better than analogue?

That question, although valid, isn't really relevant to the original posters question.

 

The answer, although out of context to the original question,  would then be another question, asking, why run analogue at all if you thought digital was better?

 

A lot have sold their LP and players off years ago, only to reconsider and get back into it [ and it would seem at a far greater expense than originally], only to find that although sounding great, the romance with the format just isn't there any more, the reason being the convenience factor of digital, and that the fact that most new LP's use digital masters, which to an extent sort of defeats the point.

 

I've still got all my analogue stuff, but it's packed up, and the reason why is I got fed up with a perpetual losing battle with dust.

 

I haven't tried this [as yet], but it has just come to mind.

If you own a PC/MAC with a DAW of some type installed [ Logic /Cuebase/Studio One etc ], you could run your digital files through one of the many mastering plugins that add either Tape emulation or LP / Eqing emulation, and rerecord them, then compare the two......see if it sounds to you like it's coming off a LP.

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20 hours ago, Tubularbells said:

Easy vinyl wins for overall enjoyment, bit like going to a live event as it takes some amount of effort for both but in this case it's  to usher the album onto the turntable, cue the arm and drop the needle unlike digital where you press play and obtain instant gratification but hey that's just me and my opinion which is practically worthless in today's currency

I beg to differ with your closing sentence. Definitely NOT worthless in today's currency!

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