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Computer program to establish CD source as vinyl or tape?
muse2u
post Dec 23 2012, 19:01
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On several occasions I have purchased compilation CDs of 60's artists, where it was not clearly indicated what the analog source of the CD was. The artists made a brief appearance on the scene, recorded several vinyl singles, no albums and subsequently disappeared. From a listening test, the 'feel' of the cCD is that of a mint vinyl source with painstaking restoration. In all likelihood the original master/session tapes were not available and mint vinyl copies were the only alternative to creating the comp. Listening for telltale pops and clicks does not reveal the source in this case. Sometimes there is a little distortion in high volume/high frequency audio where the needle/cartridge did not track properly.

I assume that a vinyl sourced CD must have some measurable characteristics, other than pops and clicks, that are different from a tape sourced CD. Is anyone aware of a program that will analyze a CD (direct or after transfer to hard drive) for these differences?
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muse2u
post Dec 28 2012, 18:20
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Thank you all for the replies.
I have some experience with digital audio restoration techniques using DART computer programs to compensate for peculiarities on my vinyl records, so I have some understanding of what you are writing. I was hoping that a simple frequency analysis program would establish the source, but it sounds like it is more complicated than that. I don't have access to any specialized hardware so I will have to rely on my ears and listen for clues. What I might do is e-mail the cd label and ask them to clarify.
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mzil
post Dec 28 2012, 18:50
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QUOTE (muse2u @ Dec 28 2012, 13:20) *
Thank you all for the replies.
I have some experience with digital audio restoration techniques using DART computer programs to compensate for peculiarities on my vinyl records, so I have some understanding of what you are writing. I was hoping that a simple frequency analysis program would establish the source, but it sounds like it is more complicated than that. I don't have access to any specialized hardware so I will have to rely on my ears and listen for clues. What I might do is e-mail the cd label and ask them to clarify.

I wouldn't listen to the music, I would look at it.

Like Arny wrote, open a real-time spectral analysis image of the music and look for signature spikes at, for example, 50/60 Hz (EU and US AC hum) or ~15 kHz for CRT TV scan frequency noise. Magnify the view and if you see the spike wavering up and down in frequency every 1.8 seconds, then you know for certain the music is being generated by something which rotates at 33.33 rpm (but there is some wow due to an off center spindle hole, record warp, etc causing the frequency wavering).

This post has been edited by mzil: Dec 28 2012, 18:51
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