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Newly released Vinyl and the Loudness War
DVDdoug
post Apr 12 2011, 19:13
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So the big mystery is what they do to the digital masters to remaster them for vinyl?
Well, a good mastering engineer is going to listen to the recording and treat each track individually to get the sound he's looking for, or as close as he can get.


And you already told us -
QUOTE
The re-limiting process, individually tailored for every release, smoothes the wave peaks to produce a cut that brings out the colour of the original recording. Filtering the frequency extremes to more closely suit vinyl sound reproduction reintroduces energy to the signal at both ends of the frequency spectrum. And phase issues are rectified by slightly narrowing the stereo image bringing clarity that would otherwise often be lost.


Of course, those things could also be done to the digital master, if it seems to enhance the sound. But, if you are starting-out with a "perfect" recording, all of those things will degrade sound quality.
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Axon
post Apr 12 2011, 20:06
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The more well-known mastering steps for vinyl include:
  • Summing bass to mono, to reduce vertical modulation levels on the cut. (This may be more elaborate than a simple summation, in order to avoid reducing bass signal energy.)
  • Lowpass filtering, or a fast limiter/compressor only applied to high freq content. Excessive sibilance can both make tracking harder (due to pinch effect and acceleration limits), and cutting harder (due to overheating).
  • A possible treble boost to counteract various treble losses in the recording/playback chain, most notably towards the inner groove.

And of course, the vinyl mastering process can omit certain steps that were in the CD process, like those related to compression/limiting, but those are by no means absolutely necessary. Similarly, all the steps listed above can be avoided or minimized if the recording level is set low enough, or if the source material does not require it. But lowering the level also lowers the SNR and some material really does need this sort of thing.

If you're looking for a specific answer as to whether or not any hypercompression exists on the vinyl vs the cd, besides getting a direct answer from the mastering engineer, the next best thing is to record the vinyl to a WAV, look at the waveforms sample-by-sample and try to match up areas of hard clipping on the CD to the places they ought to be on the vinyl. For several reasons, you probably won't see a horizontal flat line of clipping on the vinyl - if it's there, it will probably be "skewed" and appear like a straight line with some nonzero slope. But if the number of consecutive clipping samples appears to be the same between the vinyl and the CD, the common wisdom is, that's a fairly conclusive result that the vinyl is similarly hypercompressed.
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pbiancardi
post Apr 13 2011, 00:06
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Potential first issue.

I just received the Judas Priest Nostradamus set and the (3) LP's were in a plastic liner which was stuck to the LP's and appears to have left some sort of film on them, is this ok? I can take them back but I am assuming that they all ship that way??

Here is what it looks like:





This post has been edited by pbiancardi: Apr 13 2011, 01:05
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DVDdoug
post Apr 13 2011, 01:13
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I've never seen anything like that... But like I said, I haven't purchased a record for 25 or 30 years. biggrin.gif

It looks like peel-off protective cover like you see on TV screens & computer monitors when you un-box 'em. If it peels-off easily, that's what I'd guess it is.
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pbiancardi
post Apr 13 2011, 01:18
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It does peel off easy but it leaves kind of a film on the LP itself, not sure if it is in the groove and damaging or not.

Here is the LP out of the plastic sleeve:





This post has been edited by pbiancardi: Apr 13 2011, 01:21
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