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OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: skipstone ()
Date: April 27, 2010 16:58

Suggested in the other thread, the Exile Sets For Sale:

The point that was being made is a digital recording does not sound any better on vinyl.

What was not said in that was this:

There is no analog except for the very end, the actual playing of the record. There is nothing to retain in the sound as analog recordings mastered for vinyl do. It just doesn't work the same. The digital audio signal that is making the grooves on vinyl is not the same as that of analog.

It's exactly the same as putting a CD on vinyl. It's strictly something to sell for people that think listening to it on vinyl will make it sound better. It does not - it's digital. The same CD sound is exactly that on the vinyl record - the same as the CD record. If you are not a fan of the sound of CDs and just bought a record of a digital recording, congratulations, you now have all the sounds of a CD that you hate...on vinyl. It's only - and only - something to do because people will buy it on vinyl. The fact that it's on vinyl is the selling point. A LOT OF PEOPLE do not know the difference.

In terms of quality, a digital recording on vinyl compared to an analog recording on vinyl are two utterly different deals. Of course, the analog sounds better. So there is no, OH MAN! A BIGGER BANG ON VINYL! because of the sound, that's really more about the sake of having it on vinyl (which in this kind of digital case really is about nostalgia) and I would hope to at least have real LP sized artwork (what 2% of it there was).

However, the remastered Exile on vinyl? I've never read any literature that says that the vinyl reissues were remastered - they really can't get much louder anyway. And the original master is what the deal is about. So I would think/hope that the reissue of Exile on vinyl is the original master.

Are the extra tracks going to be on vinyl? One might think - and this is simply a guess - that the analog to digital transferring of the recordings should retain the analog sound - but that doesn't mean it will sound any better on vinyl than on CD - because it's still digital. The remastering of the album and if that is put on vinyl is digital - so it's moot to buy it. Unless they use the original master or indeed remaster it for vinyl - which would be two remasterings.

I would love it if someone that has whatever many number of the vinyl editions of Exile (original, reissue with CBS - did Virgin reissue anything on vinyl? and the UMG) could compare the sound of them all.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-04-27 17:02 by skipstone.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: Kirk ()
Date: April 27, 2010 17:24

This is an interesting topic. Listening to Stones music and records since 1976 my ears are heavily 'used' to vinyl sound. Considering the 1996 Virgin remastered reissues I would say that the first impression I got was a cleared, more 'detailed' sound. On the other hand I always thought that 'something' is missing, and that was mainly that thick, almost tangible dimension of the sound based mostly on something I would call 'fatness'. For example, on the Sticky Fingers vinyl I always got the picture of a room with people playing and singing. On the CD, the sound is clear and detailed but I get a one-dimensional picture if you know what I mean. I can't 'get through the sounds' in a way. I don't know what happens actually. If you ask some people younger than me who never had vinyl records, they would probably say that all this is just nonsense.
Now, the last Stones record I bought on LP was 'Voodoo Lounge'. And I got the feeling you just described. It is like listening to a CD. According to what you say it has to do with all this analog - digital recording thing.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: whitem8 ()
Date: April 27, 2010 17:43

Thanks skipstone for your great post! Very interesting. And I don't have any vinyl of their later releases, Voodoo Lounge etc. So I am too curious how the EOMS vinyl will sound and if the new release are remastered for vinyl as opposed to a digital transfer to vinyl. And I am skeptical if, like you say, they the new EOMS will sound better than the Japanese pressings from the 80s.
I do wish I would have had more foresight to get the Mobile Fidelity Japanese Box set! That is a beauty! And I have the Sticky Fingers Mobile Fidelity release and this is the best I have heard SF.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: skipstone ()
Date: April 27, 2010 18:35

Was Voodoo all digital? I thought they used tape for that record - and Bridges. I thought Bang was the first all digital album. Dirty Work was analog. Maybe Steel Wheels was the first digital recording for the Stones as I recall the DDD initials on the actual disc (the old ones, remember, say AAD and ADD for the various processes of converting to digital for CD). All of my Stones CDs are in one box. I'll have to pull 'em out and have a look.

The Cult recently recorded to 2 inch (probably 24 tracks) and the Drive-By Truckers record on 2 inch (16 tracks - they seem to not want to go above that amount). Isn't that funny. They take the time to record to tape so it sounds good. Hell, there is a difference, I think, between analog and digital recordings even when it comes to CDs. Although the fatness of a vinyl record is missing, the technology for making CDs sound better has improved. Will it ever be like an original vinyl pressing? I don't know. I've listened to some vinyl original issues on vinyl and CD (all analog recorded albums) on really far out systems and the SOME of the vinyl albums sound just the same as the CDs. And some don't.

That's a funny thing if you think about it, digital recording. It keeps changing, where as analog recording has finally stopped changing and is certainly reliable. There are digital recordings from the mid 1980s that are no longer accessible because the technology to record them with is gone!

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: KSIE ()
Date: April 27, 2010 18:35

Quote
skipstone
The same CD sound is exactly that on the vinyl record - the same as the CD record. If you are not a fan of the sound of CDs and just bought a record of a digital recording, congratulations, you now have all the sounds of a CD that you hate...on vinyl.


While I agree with the basis of your statement, I think you're ignoring the differences in playback. Yes the source is the same, but it's quite possible that the final analog soundwaves sound better delivered through a turntable. Similarly, a CD will sound better or worse when decoded by different DACs into a final analog stream.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: skipstone ()
Date: April 27, 2010 18:38

That is just it though - the playback is analog, yes, but it's a digital signal anyway.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: KSIE ()
Date: April 27, 2010 18:45

Quote
skipstone
That is just it though - the playback is analog, yes, but it's a digital signal anyway.

Like I said, I agree. And that's not as good (IMO) as having an analog source to play through an analog delivery system. But, the vinyl might produce a more pleasant sound (of the digital source, granted), than the analog that comes out of the CD player's Digital-Analog Converter. Just a minor point.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: April 27, 2010 18:49

Quote
skipstone
The same CD sound is exactly that on the vinyl record - the same as the CD record. If you are not a fan of the sound of CDs and just bought a record of a digital recording, congratulations, you now have all the sounds of a CD that you hate...on vinyl.<<

rubbish!
you don't even take into account the RIAA pre-emphasis and later the de-empahsis of your phono-amp.
let alone you have no idea if and when the recording left the digital domain.
some mastering studios use analog tape machines just to get the compression and saturation of tape.

it's not black and white like in your assumption eye rolling smiley


[www.euronet.nl]
[en.wikipedia.org]
[stereophile.com]



Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2010-04-27 19:09 by open-g.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: guitarbastard ()
Date: April 27, 2010 19:47

i'll stand any blind test anytime!
vinyl ruuuuuuuuuuules!
i'd even go that far and say: if you've never heard the stones on vinyl, you haven't got a clue how great they are (were)!

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: FreeBird ()
Date: April 27, 2010 21:17

Quote
open-g
you don't even take into account the RIAA pre-emphasis and later the de-empahsis of your phono-amp.
What's that got to do with it? It's only one of the countless imperfections present in the signal chain when you use vinyl. The intention, however, was for the pre-emphasis and de-emphasis process to be transparent.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: April 27, 2010 22:45

Quote
FreeBird
Quote
open-g
you don't even take into account the RIAA pre-emphasis and later the de-empahsis of your phono-amp.
What's that got to do with it? It's only one of the countless imperfections present in the signal chain when you use vinyl. The intention, however, was for the pre-emphasis and de-emphasis process to be transparent.

My reply was re. Skip's "CD = same as vinyl" comment which simply ain't true.
Your mastering job will look a lot different when your goal is to cut a vinyl master into a piece of metal or making a master for CD pressing
[eil.com]

you need to take care that the bass energy doesn't make the needle jump out of the groove while cutting - on the other side, that it doesn't lack of bass.
some say it's the same curve since it gets reversed with the phono amp - but even through halfway decent gear - no way are you gonna get a linear response i.e. how they initially masterd it, back again.

the digital domain has the 0dB ceilling as a limit. mastering can be done with what you hear - linear. ...and no, I don't want to go into the can o'worms what you can mess up with it.


only one of the countless imperfections well, that's true.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: scottkeef ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:12

All real interesting. Seems that when cds first came into the market,it would specify AAD (analog recording,analog mixing,digital mastering)ADD (analog recording,digital equip for mixing,digital mastering)and DDD(pretty self explaining). So a question-once you tranfer from the analog source to digital can you ever return WITHOUT having access to the original analog master? I was wondering if thats why the bonus Exile tracks are not on the vinyl since the original analog tapes were probably changed to digital medium in order to overdub in todays technology? Maybe one of ya can explain it to me!

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: skipstone ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:16

So what you're basically saying is that an all digital recording can actually sound better on vinyl than it will on CD even though it's all digital? I dunno. I'm just talking from my own experience of listening to all digital recordings on vinyl and they just sound...like a CD on vinyl. Just so you know I'm not talking about some cheap turntable on some $5 speakers, ha ha, I got to listen to this kind of comparison at the vinyl printing factory in Salina, Kansas with the dude from Lafayette, LA named Chad, who's way out of his environment up there but LOVES HIS JOB (I also got to look at brand newly made 'original' Stones albums that the artwork came from Virgin/EMI directly - Some Girls was the one I looked at. He wouldn't tell me where the master tape was or if they even had the master tape!). The band I was in at the time, we had just recorded a new record, totally digital, and there was some talk about putting it on vinyl and he didn't want to do it because of that very fact, the all digital realm not being worth putting on vinyl. So someone else got hired to just do it for the sake of having it on vinyl. We listened to it in our recording studio, did an A/B comparison with the CD and the only difference I could tell was...the noise the vinyl made. Other than that it sounded exactly the same!

The main point, which I think is probably much closer to the actual comparison of the differences in the medium of analog vs. digital is just that - with exception to new born babies and a majority of the iTunes generations, ha ha, an analog recorded vinyl album will sound much better than a digitally recorded vinyl album.

But if someone says that even digital on vinyl does indeed sound better, as much as I find that hard to believe, I'll take their word for it. It just seems that it would be a minute difference that would seem essentially redundant. At least, from my own experience.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: ghostryder13 ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:19

i've been confused about all this for a couple years now
a digital remastering is to make an analog recording that was designed for vinyl and cassette sound good on cd. but how can a digital remaster sound good on vinyl now that the sound has been altered . so am i right when i've told people it can't?

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: NickB ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:21

Sorry y'all but for once I'm in agreement with Skippy here. If you master on digital and then transfer to vinyl you're still gonna get the same master but on a different format...... I bet you that my original vinyl Exile will still sound better than the remastered Exile on vinyl. Christ my original vinyl of exile sounds way, way better than the CBS crap CD.

NickB

You can't always get what you want.....

www.myspace.com/thesonkings

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: skipstone ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:22

I'm guessing it can't! Because it's remastered FOR compact disc! And I guess now really more for mp3 and whatever the hell else there is.

Why remaster the original master for the exact same thing - vinyl - when it already sounds the way it's suppose to sound!!!!????

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: NickB ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:26

What Skip you're sayin' the reissue vinyl gonna sound better than my original vinyl? Christ on a bike I better start saving up for the super deluxe!!

NickB

You can't always get what you want.....

www.myspace.com/thesonkings

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:35

>>question-once you transfer from the analog source to digital can you ever return WITHOUT having access to the original analog master?<<

in short - yes you can.
hopefully you've had the very best mixed, non-corroded, un-abused analog material there ever was, before it was digitized to the highest availlable state of the art digital media of the time.
the timeline is important here.

DDD isn't favoured very much today. it's a hybrid of analog and digital, from start to finish - and it's freakin' expensive.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: skipstone ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:40

Quote
NickB
...the reissue vinyl gonna sound better than my original vinyl?

I'm not sayin' that! I just find that possible actuality (is that actually happening or not?) hard to believe! Really - WHY BOTHER improving the original intended sound of the original master when it was originally released on vinyl for a new vinyl print???!!!

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: NickB ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:47

Weird I'm way confused!!

NickB

You can't always get what you want.....

www.myspace.com/thesonkings

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: open-g ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:53

>>we had just recorded a new record, totally digital, and there was some talk about putting it on vinyl and he didn't want to do it because of that very fact, the all digital realm not being worth putting on vinyl. So someone else got hired to just do it for the sake of having it on vinyl. We listened to it in our recording studio, did an A/B comparison with the CD and the only difference I could tell was...the noise the vinyl made. Other than that it sounded exactly the same!

What I sense here is that it wasn't properly mastered for vinyl but for CD.
there's a different approach to get the job done for each way.

what the Stones camp has done I don't know.... yet.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: scottkeef ()
Date: April 27, 2010 23:55

Well, I'll just have to agree with EVERYBODY HA HA! Cause its way over my head. I remember seeing Keith interviewed about Sam Philips and him saying( in so many words) how Sam just knew where to put everyone and postion the mics to get that great SUN sound. Sometimes I wish it was still that simple-can't argue with the results!

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: NickB ()
Date: April 28, 2010 00:11

Quote
scottkeef
Well, I'll just have to agree with EVERYBODY HA HA! Cause its way over my head. I remember seeing Keith interviewed about Sam Philips and him saying( in so many words) how Sam just knew where to put everyone and postion the mics to get that great SUN sound. Sometimes I wish it was still that simple-can't argue with the results!

Yeah but the final result is when you eq it and put on the compression....or the fairy dust.

NickB

You can't always get what you want.....

www.myspace.com/thesonkings

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: FreeBird ()
Date: April 28, 2010 00:39

Quote
scottkeef
I was wondering if thats why the bonus Exile tracks are not on the vinyl since the original analog tapes were probably changed to digital medium in order to overdub in todays technology? Maybe one of ya can explain it to me!
They probably digitized the multitrack tapes, added some digital overdubs, then mixed it digitally. So the Exile bonus CD is basically an ADD/DDD hybrid. An analog release would be DDA/ADA. Some songs were probably finished already, so depending on whether they had already been mixed as well they would either be ADD and ADA or AAD and AAA.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: theimposter ()
Date: April 28, 2010 00:54

Let me throw in on this one and see what people are saying. For example, I was at Great Escape here in Nashville recently, browsing through vinyl, and Icame across Brian Wilson's SMILE on vinyl. I already own the cd and was tempted to buy, but I didn't. Now, I do remember from interviews at the time I think he said it was basically recorded digitally. So if what skip and some others are saying is that the format you play it on will make no difference if it was recorded on digital technology? It wouldn't have the "classic" vinyl sound of, say, an actual vintage Beach Boys lp from the 1960's?

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: scottkeef ()
Date: April 28, 2010 01:15

The digital format wasnt available at the time the album was recorded,was it? Thats a new one on me.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: skipstone ()
Date: April 28, 2010 02:17

Quote
open-g
>>we had just recorded a new record, totally digital, and there was some talk about putting it on vinyl and he didn't want to do it because of that very fact, the all digital realm not being worth putting on vinyl. So someone else got hired to just do it for the sake of having it on vinyl. We listened to it in our recording studio, did an A/B comparison with the CD and the only difference I could tell was...the noise the vinyl made. Other than that it sounded exactly the same!

What I sense here is that it wasn't properly mastered for vinyl but for CD.
there's a different approach to get the job done for each way.

what the Stones camp has done I don't know.... yet.

Ahhh. See, THAT fact I don't know, if it was mastered for vinyl. Maybe that's why it sounded just like the CD on vinyl. That's what I'm trying to figure out - can one master a digital recording for vinyl to have it sound...I guess what one would expect - like an analog recording/mastering. I'm guessing no since there is no tape. Perhaps loading it on to tape might change something? I know the other way around sounds good. I would think that a digital master for vinyl would have to be different than for CD. Two entirely different mediums. But again, seeing that it is a totally digital recording, would mastering it for vinyl make it any different? With no analog (tape) involved, I really don't see how it could. It would only be not as loud I would think. All I was told was that "it's just not the same and it's not what it's about".



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 2010-04-29 21:20 by skipstone.

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: nonfilter ()
Date: April 28, 2010 07:23

I am pretty sure Bridges to Babylon was mostly analog, maybe not the Dust Brothers contributions. I thought Voodoo was, too. Wasn't there some talk when ABB came out of it being their first all digital. Main Offender was all analogue for sure, and probably Wandering Spirit, as I believe Rick Rubin is one of those tape-only producers. I agree with him. Get Jack White to produce the next album and it will be analog for sure.

[www.non-filters.com]

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: ghostryder13 ()
Date: April 28, 2010 09:31

another question i have is with the digital remastering making the music louder isn't there a chance it will make the vinyl records skip?

Re: OT Digital LP On CD vs Vinyl
Posted by: WeLoveYou ()
Date: April 28, 2010 13:47

The classic sound of vinyl many people refer to is really a combination of using (1) analogue equipment to record/mix/master and (2) using an analogue medium for the final product, eg. vinyl. Both processes will add certain qualities to the sound that many believe is a good thing.

So even if an album was recorded completely digitally, it might still sound slightly "better" if it's issued on vinyl... but not necessarily as good as an album recorded/mixed/mastered with analogue equipment and then issued on vinyl...or even on CD.

It's most likely the choice of whether the initial recording is done using digital or analogue equipment that makes the biggest difference......rather than the choice of whether to issue on vinyl or CD.

So they could issue the new Exile tracks on vinyl..why not? It would sound ok, possibly slightly nicer on the ears than CD, but definitely no worse than CD.

ghostryder13: "another question i have is with the digital remastering making the music louder isn't there a chance it will make the vinyl records skip?".
No, because the depth of the groove can be adjusted to eliminate this possibly. Being "louder" refers to the amount of mastering compression used, which essentially makes the music denser and fuller, with less variation between loud and quiet parts in the mix..in other words the instruments/vocals will always sound higher in volume with no quiet parts.

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