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Music piracy before computers

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Music piracy before computers

Comments for: Music piracy before computers
Mrkim Report This Comment
Date: August 17, 2011 11:21PM

Glad to say I skipped right past this phase! And these days rippin from an old LP into a digital .mp3 format is easily done with USB turntables, but the overall quality of most of the USB turntables available is pretty shitty in terms of wow and flutter control (speed control of the platter), overall tone arm weight and balancing and the quality of the needle (stylus) they come with compared to an old school quality turntable.

One of these days when I find myself with too much time on my hands I will finally get around to convertin the 150 or so of old LPs I have which I haven't been able to find in digital format but that process will definitely take some time to get done.

Fossil found and donated a great Sansui turntable to this cause on craigslist that was missing the diamond from the stylus which luckily was interchangeable with the one from my old dead Technics turntable but I no longer have an amp to interface between the turntable and computer, so I still need that piece of hardware to get it done too. He had also located an awesome old Fischer receiver on craiglist we were both droolin over till we hooked it up and found out only the tuner section still worked disappointed smiley

Luckily I did manage to keep my old record cleaning gear over the years but just properly cleanin an LP and then de-ionizing it before you ever even let the needle (stylus) hit the LP takes a good cuppla minutes per side which will add quite a bit of time to the overall rippin/encoding process eye popping


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 17/08/2011 11:26PM by Mrkim.
woberto Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 12:19AM

pulse Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 04:32AM

Haha woberto on the case

This one's bigger though

mrk; I've been considering buying a quality DJ deck recently because I've been bored and like the idea of buying some vinyl.. the main thing that's stopped me is, new, the vinyls range $50-100 each. And 2nd hand record stores are pretty much dead 'round these parts.

So yeah, great idea but seriously the only albums I'm likely to buy on vinyl, I already own on CD ... so it kind of becomes a bit redundant.

I wish SACD was more popular, since I have a SACD player and capable amp... or even DVD-A.

Everything's so expensive smiling
Mrkim Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 04:59AM

Sheesh! At those prices I'll be lookin to divest myself of my vinyl collection after I get 'em ripped in.

I have about 300 LPs total and most of 'em are still pretty pristine since I was always pretty careful with 'em and did not loan 'em out. In that collection there's about 100 that I used to have on CD before rippin in my collection and sellin 'em in a garage sale.

These albums have been stored in Shell Rotella T 15w40 6-gallon case boxes which snugly hold 100 albums each in perfect upright position for over 20yrs now grinning

fossil_digger Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 07:13AM

this is a local record store that's been around as long as i can remember: Bill's
woberto Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 07:21AM

Pulse, 75 Swan Street Richmond, check it out.
pulse Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 07:48AM

I'll have a look, I've been working on Church St a bit lately so Swan is an easy walk

There's still one 2nd hand store in the city but it's fucking expensive. There's also one on Barkley St in St Kilda but likewise it's pretty pricey

ebay seems to have a few good ones but I dunno, my issue is more I have no space for a turntable smiling
woberto Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 07:58AM

Half the fun is flicking through them in a store.
Of course you can't beat eBay if you know exactly what you want.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 18, 2011 10:48AM

I got a USB turntable several years ago as a gift. The A/D converter to the USB interface sucks boulders but the TT has a built-in preamp so it's a simple matter of running a stereo cable to the sound card line input and sounds 100% better. If your TT lacks a preamp you can get one for $17 at Radio Shack. The TT I got is DC motor belt drive and has solid speed so there are no wow/flutter issues. My kid broke the damn needle though and I haven't replaced it yet. We've got about 150-200 albums too but sadly they have not been taken care of very well and most were bought used and in not so great shape when we got em. Somewhere in life travels I lost two cleaning kits I had. A new kit costs more than a new stylus.
jgoins Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 06:08AM

I don't have any LPs any longer but I remember seeing at Fred's locally a new am/fm/cd burner/turntable being sold. I thought it was pretty cool as it would allow burning copies of LPs straight to cd but not have LP collection I didn't buy it and it wasn't very expensive.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 10:49AM

A turntable-cdburner like that would be pretty cool.
Mrkim Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 01:05PM

As somewhat of a purist regarding such things (basically totally anal in truth) I want a good quality turntable and amp system to do any LP encoding. The quality of the equipment always has an impact when doin reproductions and even under best case scenarios any reproduction also carries with it a certain amount of overall loss, and in this case that loss can equate to quite a bit if the equipment itself is sub par.

Something a lot of folks have never fully understood about the concept of Dolby filtering is that the reduction of noise, hiss, etc. always comes at the cost of loss of the overall signal being filtered too. Dolby uses compression technology to effectively limit the reproduction of both the upper and lower ranges of sound to achieve their result.

I've swayed several folks away from using Dolby filtering by showing them with sound tests on their own equipment how Dolby can tend to muffle the bass and decrease the crispness of the higher end sounds too. In my opinion, with the increased quality of digital sound reproductions these days Dolby is a lot more of a marketing/branding/sales tool than it is in actually working to produce overall clarity in sound reproduction.

In digital file choices available today there's also a HUGE difference between the common 128 bit rate .mp3 files and say a 256 bit rate file. These differences are even more pronounced when using higher bit rate .ogg files though my faves are the totally uncompressed .flac files I most prefer. These files are HUGE by comparison but with HD space as cheap as it is these days it dudn much matter, so ...

Having shown folks a side by side sound test using various formats and bit rates of digital music files the .flac files always get the nod from every single music fan I've exposed to their increased range and clarity.

Back in the 80s JVC offered their own system called ANRS (automatic noise reduction system) and Super ANRS for their high end cassette tape decks. With my Super ANRS deck and simply high bias quality TDK tape I was able to produce tapes far superior to what was commercially available even when recording from LPs, something that should never have been possible since the record labels had the actual master tapes to reproduce their retail tapes from.

My plans to rip/encode my old LPs will stay on hold till I can locate a nice receiver/amp that has a flat line input/output capability. I'll use Audacity to digitally make any changes to the .flac files I'll be using to encode with winking


Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 19/08/2011 01:12PM by Mrkim.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 05:02PM

I'm right there with you on the audiophile anal stuff Kim. Dolby blows goats. JVC ANRS and SANRS is superior for sure but all of them are based on frequency pre-emphasis/de-emphasis which are nothing more than relatively fixed, staged, pre/post tone controls. ANRS does have the advantage of being more dynamically responsive to input signal amplitude but it is still flawed. I prefer raw, no equalization signal transfer between input and output and if need be use EQ to tailor the freq response to my own tastes and capabilities of the sound reproduction equipment in use. I have done extensive recording from various source material to magnetic and digital media and have found it pays off to have hands on control and fuck the "automatic" shit. I also prefer discrete audio component gear that is up to the task of obtaining near-flat frequency response. Unfortunately such perfect gear does not exist commercially but some things can get close.

It is pretty simple to build a near flat amp circuit but unfortunately when recording from LP to other media you still have to contend with RIAA equalization of the LP which is an imperfect "standard" to begin with and varies significantly between record companies. I have learned to settle for a happy medium.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 05:04PM

Oh, forgot to add...

Audacity is ok but I prefer Goldwave. Probably just because I'm used to the interface even though it does leave much to be desired.
Mrkim Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 07:53PM

Good to hear you're an audiophile too dude, I may lean on ya for some help once I get started doin my conversions smiling
bouncing smiley

I remember back in the 70s when Dolby 1st started gettin attention my observations then were that it really only helped mask the inferiority of the equipment being used, yet even then it was all too obvious how much music was bein lost to their filtering/compression.

Havin always liked JVCs equipment and havin been really enamored of their amp technologies and their penchant to do tons of audio research, it was always my brand of choice until movin into the computer systems I use now instead. I agree their SANRS was still a compromise but it seemed to be way less than what Dolby was and for tapes I used to drag around in my car it did seem to clip off just enough of the high end signal to eliminate some of the hiss without appreciably losing much on the bass end of the spectrum either, so it was a decent trade off overall.

The only real reason I plan to use Audacity is since it's open source it plays well with my Ubuntu OS. I'm sure there'll be a learnin curve once I start playin with it but I hope to do as little modulation of the input signal as possible. I'm right with ya on lettin in everything you can get and then tailoring the result headed to the speakers by playin with the EQ settings.

If you haven't yet experimented with .flac files you'd be amazed at the difference in overall fullness of the sound when compared to .mp3s, even when comparing extremely high bit rates in .mp3s the .flacs will blow 'em away dynamically Dancing
Green Banana!

BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 09:52PM

I may not be the best resource to lean on but don't mind helping if I'm able.

I am what true audiophiles would consider an audiophile-wannabe or an amateur because I have never been able to afford to get into it "properly" but I am a musician (or have been up until a couple of years ago anyway) with a pretty good ear and I know what sounds good to me and most people. I initially got into technology primarily because of my love for music.

I have been an electronics technician and a computer technician / systems admin but I've probably forgotten most of what I used to think I knew about electronics and have been out of the loop with technology in general for a couple of years too.

I used to do a LOT of home recording with chintzy gear and learned how to make crappy gear sound as good as it possibly can. It's really a matter of getting the best stuff you can but more than that using your ears and not being afraid to experiment. If you have good hearing and it sounds good to you then it is great.

I am not into being an audio or a tech snob for the sake of being one and I don't automatically take everyone's opinions as gospel either. I've known a lot of snobs who although do have something valid to say at times are often just full of shit, that shit being themselves.

I think that the digital music revolution is fantastic but there is still development in the analog realm. I'm not an analog snob either but a 30 ips tape deck would be awesome to play with. I wonder if magnetic disc technology has been or will be adapted for analog recording. Like I said, I am terribly out of the loop on stuff and just know the basics anymore. It would be cool to see somebody develop optical media for analog use. Hell, for all I know they may have already. I'm sure it is technically possible.
woberto Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 10:08PM

BETA tape gas better sound quality than CD. My geeky friends have their entire libraries on BETA and done serious amps & speakers in their sheds.
fossil_digger Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 10:40PM

bouncing smiley sheds?
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 10:56PM

I've heard/read the same being true of VHS tape for audio. There are two significant problems; one being the lack of control and monitoring audio signal levels and the other being the use of agc (automatic gain control) circuits which cannot be disabled. The result of no monitor/control is hit and miss attempt at input signal levels even if using an external mixer. The result of acg is a compressed recording meaning loss of dynamics. Musical passages meant to be quiet become louder and passages meant to be louder become quieter.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 11:08PM

I believe sheds = garages in down-under-speak.
GAK67 Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 11:20PM

Blah's translation is correct.
fossil_digger Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 11:28PM

yeah i know, but it's still funny. smiling
bouncing smiley
pulse Report This Comment
Date: August 19, 2011 11:49PM

Not necessarily.

I park a car in a garage (*edit: or car port), keep my tools in a shed in the yard

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 19/08/2011 11:49PM by pulse.
fossil_digger Report This Comment
Date: August 20, 2011 12:05AM

Kim's friend's wife makes us go smoke in the shed. smiling
bouncing smiley
Mrkim Report This Comment
Date: August 20, 2011 01:11AM

I prefer to shed my clothes before loggin in Dancing
Green Banana! handjob (headexplode) rock on
woberto Report This Comment
Date: August 20, 2011 04:46AM

In Australia & NZ the "shed" is the mans domain.
woberto Report This Comment
Date: August 20, 2011 06:01AM

Quoth the Wikipedia...

In June of 1983, Sony introduced high fidelity audio to videotape as Beta Hi-Fi. For NTSC, Beta HiFi worked by placing a pair of FM carriers between the chroma (C) and luminance (Y) carriers, a process known as frequency multiplexing. Each head had a specific pair of carriers; in total, four individual channels were employed. Head A recorded its hi-fi carriers at 1.38(L) and 1.68(R) MHz, and the B head employed 1.53 and 1.83 MHz. The result was audio with an 80 dB dynamic range, with less than 0.005% wow and flutter.

Prior to the introduction of Beta Hi-Fi, Sony shifted the Y carrier up by 400 kHz to make room for the 4 FM carriers that would be needed for Beta Hi-Fi. All Beta machines incorporated this change, plus the ability to hunt for a lower frequency pre-AFM Y carrier. Sony incorporated an "antihunt" circuit, to stop the machine hunting for a Y carrier that wasn't there.

Some Sony NTSC models were marketed as "Hi-Fi Ready" (with an SL-HFR prefix to the model's number instead of the usual SL or SL-HF). These Betamax decks looked like a regular Betamax model, except for a special 28-pin connector on the rear. If the user desired a Beta Hi-Fi model but lacked the funds at the time, he could purchase an "SL-HFRxx" and at a later date purchase the separate Hi-Fi Processor. Sony offered two outboard Beta Hi-Fi processors, the HFP-100 and HFP-200. They were identical except that the HFP-200 was capable of multi-channel TV sound, with the word "stereocast" printed after the Beta Hi-Fi logo. This was possible because unlike a VHS Hi-Fi deck, an NTSC Betamax didn't need an extra pair of heads. The HFP-x00 would generate the needed carriers which would be recorded by the attached deck, and during playback the AFM carriers would be passed to the HFP-x00. They also had a small "fine tracking" control on the rear panel for difficult tapes.

For PAL, however, the bandwidth between the chroma and luminance carriers was not sufficient to allow additional FM carriers, so depth multiplexing was employed, wherein the audio track would be recorded in the same way that the video track was. The lower-frequency audio track was written first by a dedicated head, and the video track recorded on top by the video head. The head disk had an extra pair of audio-only heads with a different azimuth, positioned slightly ahead of the regular video heads, for this purpose.

Sony was confident that VHS could not achieve the same audio performance feat as Beta Hi-Fi. However, to the chagrin of Sony, JVC did develop a VHS hi-fi system on the principle of depth multiplexing approximately a year after the first Beta Hi-Fi VCR, the SL-5200, was introduced by Sony. Despite initial praise as providing "CD sound quality", both Beta Hi-Fi and VHS HiFi suffered from "carrier buzz", where high frequency information bled into the audio carriers, creating momentary "buzzing" and other audio flaws. Both systems also used companding noise-reduction systems, which could create "pumping" artifacts under some conditions. Both formats also suffered from interchange problems, where tapes made on one machine did not always play back well on other machines. When this happened and if the artifacts became too distracting, users were forced to revert to the old linear soundtrack.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 20, 2011 12:01PM

That's some great info, thanks.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 20, 2011 02:14PM

The "pumping" effect mentioned in the article is one effect of the compression I was referring to caused by agc and other methods of automatic level control. Careful use of peak limiting is preferable to compression. If you need to use so much limiting that it is audible than your signal levels are too high to begin with. The idea is retain the full dynamic range of the original recording or source material and in my opinion/experience peak limiting is used only for possible transient spikes as a precaution so you don't overdrive the next stage into clipping.
jgoins Report This Comment
Date: August 21, 2011 05:47AM

How bout this coincidence. Talking about the combo am/fm/cd/cassette/turntable, I bought one yesterday from the fleamarket which was brand new for $30.00. I will put it on my table today for $60.00 and I should get it. Fred's sold them for over $100.00. I will play with it while I try selling it today.
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 21, 2011 12:18PM

What make is it?
BlahX3 Report This Comment
Date: August 21, 2011 09:45PM

BTW, I should probably mention that companding is the combination of compression and expansion of the audio signal levels.

Compression lowers the higher signal levels and expansion raises the lower levels. Companding makes the overall signal level more constant and is unnatural sounding with even more lack of dynamics. The "pumping" and "breathing" is even more noticeable than compression because during lower level passages the signal to noise ratio is less (less signal, more noise by comparison) and boosting the signal also boosts the noise by the same amount. Compression alone produces pumping and breathing because the result of lowering higher levels also makes the lower levels (and noise) louder by comparison. In cheaper compressors the pumping and breathing is more audible, in really good high end compressors it is barely noticeable unless too much compression is used.

It's easy to make good gear sound bad. It's an art to make mediocre gear sound good.
jgoins Report This Comment
Date: August 22, 2011 07:21AM

Blah I never even notice what brand it is. I am pretty sure it is not American made. I tested it out and it seems to work out pretty good. Only wish I still had my record collection.