Which Vinyl is better to buy? Original Pressing, or New Releases (for same album) - AVS Forum
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
post #1 of 13 Old 06-19-2013, 04:20 PM - Thread Starter
Member
 
Danroth's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 18
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 16
More Newbie Questions:

Is there a true difference between say, the original pressing of Dark Side of the Moon, and the recent re-release of that same album on Vinyl? This is probably going to be the first record I play once I get my TT, and everything set up. I've got a few key albums that I want to listen to on Vinyl, those being:

Pink Floyd: Dark Side of the Moon
Bob Dylan: Blood On the Tracks
The Doors: L.A. Woman
The Who: Quadrophenia

Those are probably going to be the first 4 albums I get, to get a good, honest feel for the Vinyl experience. They're albums I love, have listened to countless times.

But I see a lot of Vinyl albums re-released, or Remastered, and I'm wondering if Remastered means that the Master Tape is copied, and then these recordings are made off of that (I would have to presume that the Master Tape's cannot forever be copied, and also that the more you copy it, the further the sound/quality could/would degrade) ...

I'll be truthful; I like thing shiny, and new. But I also love music. So I'd probably prefer the 'newer' releases if there weren't differences, but probably go with originals if someone, say, had gone George Lucas on Bowie's Ziggy Stardust that was remastered and there was now more cowbell in Lady Stardust, or something because they always wanted it there.

Just trying to get my footing, and get a clear understanding of what the re-releases are, vs. the original pressings, and so forth.

Thanks as always for your time/input/knowledge.
Danroth is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
post #2 of 13 Old 06-19-2013, 05:24 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Class A's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Posts: 1,230
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 5 Post(s)
Liked: 36
It's a mixed bag. Depends on how they were mastered. Also the quality of the record pressing. On the Pink Floyd record I would go w/the older copies. My best one is the Japanese EMI pressing. The recent copy is a digital master sort of left me disappointed.smile.gif
Class A is offline  
post #3 of 13 Old 06-19-2013, 05:34 PM
AVS Special Member
 
MarkHotchkiss's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Long Beach, California
Posts: 1,476
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 82
Hi Dan,
Quote:
Originally Posted by Danroth View Post

Pink Floyd: Dark Side of the Moon
Bob Dylan: Blood On the Tracks
The Doors: L.A. Woman
The Who: Quadrophenia
All four of those are among my favorite albums. I have no idea if the new pressings would be better or worse than the originals, but I suspect each case is unique. Also, where the mix might be different, it would come down to personal preference.

I have original pressings of "Dark Side of the Moon" and "Quadrophenia", and I have recently digitized them (scratches and all) into high-res (24bit/96kHz) FLAC files. To me, the FLACs sound indistinguishable from the vinyl (scratches and all). If you should get new releases of either of these, I could send you the FLACs to compare, provided you let us all know what you think.

Not very scientific, I know, but fun anyway.
MarkHotchkiss is offline  
post #4 of 13 Old 07-01-2013, 02:37 PM
Senior Member
 
volta's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Colorado
Posts: 294
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 20
There really is no right answer as you probably can tell. It's all very subjective and you will get many different answers and opinions. From my experience, many try to find original pressing, and my opinion is because that is what they remember hearing growing up, so they are familiar with the sound etc. Also being first generation, the idea is that degregation hasn'st occurred with more pressings.
Not always the case though. I personally think the 200gm Classic Records issues of the Led Zeppelin albums are better than the originals (for the most part). Some of the highly regarded Led Zep original pressings have RL etched into the dead wax. This is for Robert Ludwig and indicates his masterings. Some prefer those over the regular issues or even the 'audiophile' pressings later on.
Thats part of the fun with this game is trying out different pressings and making your own conclusions. Don't get too caught up in it though, it could cost you lots of money and time.
Stevehoffman.tv has a very good forum and is a great resource to find out what pressings people prefer.
Have fun with it and try not to obsess too much about finding perfection. A good condition record and a good turntable will be enough for most people.
volta is offline  
post #5 of 13 Old 07-01-2013, 04:33 PM
Advanced Member
 
gillcup's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Raleigh, NC
Posts: 749
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 12 Post(s)
Liked: 482
In general, I prefer the original pressings. I have found most reissues to be nice and quiet, but dull and lacking the 3 dimensionality that makes the best vinyl so appealing. There are exceptions. The recent Jimi Hendrix reissues (such as the live at Berkeley) sound very good IMO. The Speakers Corner version of Supertramp's Crime of the Century is also great.

The biggest problem in my experience, is that all original pressing aren't equal. You can buy ten copies of Dark Side of the Moon and one might sound great, and the others, not so great. And finding original copies that play quietly can be very difficult. Nothing more frustrating that getting a great sound LP that is ruined by the amount of pops, crackle and clicks.

Regarding some of the specific titles you asked about:

- Pink Floyd - Dark Side of the Moon

I have 7 vinyl copies of this album, including a US, UK, UK Quad, MFSL and the 30th anniversary reissue. The reissue in this case is pretty good IMO. I have a slight preference for the UK copy, but the MFSL is very good too. Actually, none are terrible.

- Who - Quadrophenia

I have 5 copies of this album. 2 US copies (1 original, 1 later issue from the late 1970's), 2 UK (1 original, 1 reissue from the 1980's) and a German original. For my money, the original UK is best with the original US a close 2nd. The German copy was very dull sounding.

Mark

There is a very thin line between "hobby" and "mental illness". - Dave Barry
gillcup is offline  
post #6 of 13 Old 07-02-2013, 04:39 AM
AVS Addicted Member
 
arnyk's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: Grosse Pointe Woods, MI
Posts: 13,649
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 287 Post(s)
Liked: 997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Danroth View Post

More Newbie Questions:

Is there a true difference between say, the original pressing of Dark Side of the Moon, and the recent re-release of that same album on Vinyl? This is probably going to be the first record I play once I get my TT, and everything set up. I've got a few key albums that I want to listen to on Vinyl, those being:

This question is so general that it makes even less sense than "Are blondes better wives in general than brunettes?"

Just to clarify - there are enough variables in the manufacturing of LPs that affect sound quality that it is impossible to generalize.

LP manufacturing technology has not advanced or had any significant audible enhancements since the early 1980s. There are elements of the production process that are clearly artistic and not technical. So people make choices that are not on a linear scale from worse to better. In fact the Better/Worse scale is not a line, not a surface, but instead a n-dimensional space. And this is not unique to LPs - a similar thing applies to CDs and downloads.
u
LP playback technology is such that your own personal playback system must have variables that will bias your preferences for various masterings and pressings of the identical same performance of the same musical work.
arnyk is online now  
post #7 of 13 Old 04-22-2014, 02:38 PM
Newbie
 
Hwearrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10

Hi, there

Hwearrow is offline  
post #8 of 13 Old 04-22-2014, 02:44 PM
Newbie
 
Hwearrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hwearrow View Post
 

Hi, there

Well,  for me the question is easy.   Of course in those classic recordings I´d  recommend getting the original pressings because the sound is unmatched. If the record was mastered in USA you must find the original copy USA, often seems easy but it is not.

If the record was mastered  and made in UK studios you must find the original UK copy. Why? Because the original sound is always more accomplished in the original country of recording. The reasons finally, of course, are technical.  You can not beat the first master and is always kept in it´s original country of recording.

Hwearrow is offline  
post #9 of 13 Old 04-22-2014, 02:48 PM
Newbie
 
Hwearrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Post
 
Hwearrow is offline  
post #10 of 13 Old 04-22-2014, 02:49 PM
Newbie
 
Hwearrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
 
Hwearrow is offline  
post #11 of 13 Old 04-22-2014, 02:50 PM
Newbie
 
Hwearrow's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2014
Posts: 5
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hwearrow View Post
 

Hi, there

Hwearrow is offline  
post #12 of 13 Old 04-22-2014, 08:10 PM
AVS Special Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2001
Location: Chino Hills, CA
Posts: 1,597
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 12
I generally go for original pressing and to take it a step further, from the country of origin. IMO, you have the best chance of getting what the artist/producer wanted and maybe a generation closer to the master. They were probably involved in the initial release. Some exceptions are remaster by labels such as Analog Productions, etc. Anything re-mastered by the likes of Steve Hoffman, Kevin Gray etc is worth buying. Other than that, I avoid re-masters. You mentioned The Doors "LA Woman". Check out http://www.musicdirect.com/p-59967-the-doors-la-woman-200g-45rpm-2lp.aspx Expensive yes but I often pay more than that for original releases (way more).

Greg
Mad Chemist is online now  
post #13 of 13 Old 05-14-2014, 11:04 AM
Member
 
Wildcat445's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: By the lake in SCS, MI
Posts: 46
Mentioned: 0 Post(s)
Tagged: 0 Thread(s)
Quoted: 0 Post(s)
Liked: 11
Definitely variable! Every pressing and mastering, even different copies of a "first pressing", can sound different.

Aside from mastering, vinyl itself has improved. Mass market vinyl in the 70s and 80s suffered due to a lot of it being "recycled", and that gave way to virgin vinyl pressings. Virgin vinyl is used today. Also, the thicker LPs pressed today have a much lower noise floor, absent of the rumble that sometimes comes from thinner vinyl (where you can actually see the surface isn't mirror-flat). Some of mine have such a low noise floor that I can hear the faint hiss of the master tape clearly. And at that point the volume is up high enough that when the music kicks in, you have to peel me off of the opposite wall of the room. biggrin.gif Cutting techniques have also been perfected. I have a couple of audiophile LPs that can push 25+ minutes per side and still sound natural, where I have some mass market LPs that get horribly compressed and dull on those inner grooves.

The downside of used vinyl is that...well, yeah, it's used. It could be dirty. It could look clean but have dirt ground into the grooves. The vinyl could be clean, but have bits of "whatever" molded into the vinyl (and that goes back to the cheap mass-market vinyl). Worst of all, it could have groove damage. That clean looking record could have been played (one might say shredded) on a console hi-fi or a Panasonic Thrusters system in the 70s, causing groove wear that is invisible to the eye but easily heard. Seller grading is often optimistic at best, and most sellers grade visually, not by actually playing the record. I have plenty of "M-" records that look clean but play back like popcorn. Even sealed vinyl from the old days is a crap shoot--let me show you the video of the sealed 45 year old album I bought which got warped by overheating...from the edge.

My preference? I'll buy new if I can. Even if the mastering or sonics is only 95% the quality of an original (all subjective of course), the cost is still cheaper than my buying several copies to find that one copy which plays back cleanly, and the sound close enough to my standards that I don't lust after an "ultimate" version. Will I ever find an RL-pressed Led Zep II, or a clean stereo original 6-eye Kind Of Blue for $30, brand new and nearly flawless? I highly doubt it. Maybe that new LP cost me $25, but I'd have to go through an awful lot of $5-$10 LPs to find one that played back so cleanly, or sounded as good. Not to say there aren't bad 180 gram LPs out there: Universal's Back To Black series sounds dull and lifeless. A buddy of mine had a handful and returned the unopened titles when he heard how bad the first few were; I unknowingly bought one myself (Police, Zenyatta Mondatta) and it also sounds rather like wet cardboard. (Even my old original LP sounded better.)

Best thing to do is read some trusted reviewers, get feedback from others on new pressings, and stick with those versions you like. If an original pressing does it for you, then that's your choice! All of us hear differently, and we all have differing opinions on how something sounds. smile.gif

-= N =-
Wildcat445 is offline  
Reply 2 Channel Audio

User Tag List

Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off