Forums > Queen - Serious Discussion > Vinyl to PC... Worth it?

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4 x Vision user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 21 Nov 09, 15:01 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I'm going to buy a vinyl player which allows me to also convert my vinyl albums to my PC... can anyone recommend what sort of price range I should be looking at?

I'm mainly buying it as I've a ton of Queen vinyl which I bought when I was younger which I haven't really had the chance to play and I'd like to compare the sound against my various CD versions.

http://www.maplin.co.uk/Module.aspx?ModuleNo=280937&source=1

Is this too cheap? To those who have made such comparisons, is it worth doing... will I hear a difference?


Marknow user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 21 Nov 09, 16:16 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I would try to get another one if I were you. That one records MP3s up to 320kbps bitrate only.
I bought one from Argos for £20, and I connected it straight to my P.C's sound card through the line in.

If you have an input spare on your sound card that's what you should do.

If you really want a usb turntable try to get one that will not compress while recording.




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Posted: 21 Nov 09, 16:34 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

I have a similar model and have no problems. I record alot of vinyl to my pc, not to compare to CD's but because there is so much stuff you can only get on vinyl.

What you will need is a good sound card that can record at 96/24 to get the most out of your vinyl. A small tip, the USB connection will limit you to 44.1/16 so use the line level input and plug straight into your sound card.

Ignore the bit in the ad about mp3, you can also record in WAV


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Posted: 21 Nov 09, 16:58 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

If you can use that model to record in wav, then it's well worth it.

They should reword that ad..



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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 06:44 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



Marknow wrote:

If you can use that model to record in wav, then it's well worth it.

They should reword that ad..


I bet it's like that because most idiots out there won't know what .wav is and only recognise the "mp3".
I know I shouldn't call most people "idiots", but let's face it, the transistion from vinyl to CD took quite a while, yet CD to mp3 took no time at all, and this is now the preferred format for most folks!
I've got a friend who has a good quality surround system, yet he has transferred all of his CDs to mp3 format and plays them back from a hard drive connected via his Buffallo media player. He can't tell the difference, and the file sizes are smaller...
[img=/images/smiley/msn/confused_smile.gif][/img] 








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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 12:15 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Thanks guys for your advice, I'm gonna buy this model.

Cheers for helping with converting too... at least I know who to ask should I have any bother.


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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 13:35 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Ultimitely every time you play a vinyl it degrades slightly more. This will be a good investment, put the files through an audio programme to get the sound you really like and you are laughing.

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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 14:14 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote



mooghead wrote:

Ultimitely every time you play a vinyl it degrades slightly more. This will be a good investment, put the files through an audio programme to get the sound you really like and you are laughing.

Think it comes with software... if not, any advice on what to buy to get best results? I have Nero up to date which I "think" does it.








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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 14:20 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

Worth it? Definitely not without a decent turntable, with a decent stylus/needle-combination, a decent RIAA-phono preamp and a decent soundcard. And once you have a kind of setup that will trash your cd-player, why bother transferring when you can spend the time enjoying the sound of vinyl instead? A decent system does not wear your vinyl that fast, unless its a gem you wish to preserve. So personally I would not bother transferring.

The downside is, that these things cost a lot of money, what is considered a budget (if we do not consider buying a used older brand) turntable of reasonable quality is something like a Pro-Ject Debut III or Rega P2.  A recommendable stylus, that provides excellent quality, great tracking etc. at a budget price is for example Audio Technica At-440mla (I have one). There are other alternatives, of course, one might find it useful to read through the vinyl related topics at Steve Hoffman-forums (such as thins one.)

So basically you will not get anything special out of a vinyl without proper gear. And not forgetting, the sound source (vinyl) itself has to be of the best possible quality.

I personally own a budget "audiophile" setup, a Project Xpression III turntable, Atl440mlA cartridge, Pro-Ject Phonobox MkII. I've also owned a Rega P2, which provided great performance, but allowed less tinkering of the arm etc. The cost of this setup was around 400€ for the turntable, 60€ for the atl440mla, and 100€ for the phonobox. This is very affordable and cheap considering the amount of money some people dish into a turntable system or a cd-player alone. I originally intended to do transfers from vinyl, but considering that I rarely have time to listen to music, I cherish those moments and enjoy the vinyls themselves. And I do appreciate the convenience of cd's, the fact that they don't need washing, dusting etc. they can live with a few scratches, and if they are properly mastered from start to finish, they sound pretty darn fantastic. Vinyl is fabulous at its best, but I will be the first to admit that its not as convenient as CD, definitely not the format that a father of an eight month old boy can enjoy as much as he'd like to...

And what if you personally don't really like the sound of vinyl or prefer the convenience of cd's?
The thing to do, is to take your best personal favorite vinyls and walk into a proper Hi-Fi store that allows listeners to try out systems with their own music.

To sum up what I intended to say.
Don't spend your money on these cheap solutions. People who buy cheap vinyl systems with poor quality stylus'
are the same people who probably roll their eyes whenever one of us vinyl listeners comes up and says that some of our vinyls sound fabulous and *GASP* better than cds!.






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mooghead user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 15:10 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

"one of us vinyl listeners"

Are you a real ale drinker and trainspotter too?

Buy the turntable... it doesnt cost that much and will extend the life of your vinyl. If you dont like it it hasn't cost you that much. You cant lose.

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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 21:23 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

pma, you make very good, valid and serious points.

But, and I say this with ALL due respect, Van Basten may be a twenty something unemployed person.  Van Basten, if you aren't, then pay heed to what pma says, and take yourself off to Richer Sounds, or the equivalent of where ever you live and get the right gear.  Or better still, get shopping on ebay.

If you aren't, and you're a casual listener, then go for Ion.

We live in time-poor days.  I have a fairly good set up from Linn - Sondek LP12, Majik DS1, LK1 preamp, etc etc etc and a set of 70s handbuilt speakers which take two people to lift - which sounds pretty expensive, but has been built up over years - eBay, things left to me, hand me downs, etc.

My own fairly modest collection has around 1000 CDs, all of which are purchased, not copied, and around 700 LPs, including all the original Queen albums, around 25 vinyl Queen bootlegs and a shed load of other nice things.  This is not a large collection by some standards. The chap next door to me has built a "listening room", which is wall to wall with around 5000 LPs, and around 7000 CDs.

But at the same time, I have everything copied over to fairly bog-standard MP3s.  And you know what? They do just fine for the iPod, for the office, for when I am sitting at the computer at home, whatever.

I don't for one second think that people shouldn't strive to "hear" music better. I also respect the "no MP3" mantra of our beloved bootleg collectors on here. But for the ordinary joe on the street, who maybe doesn't have much time or money? Just go right ahead, make do with what you can afford, and enjoy the music. 560 euros, pma, in this day and age, is a lot of money to some people.

You note the gear I have above? I copied around 150 of those LPs just using the Ion and accompanying software.  And its just fine, thanks very much.





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Adam Baboolal user not visiting Queenzone.com
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Posted: 22 Nov 09, 23:08 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

PMA, you took the words right out of my mouth! Glad someone piped up about real, solid equipment .I would never touch the Ion when there are good quality vinyl players at £200 in places like Richer Sounds. That's my target as I already have music hardware with good built-in RIAA, etc. etc.

Ok.comp, I see your point, but we must give him the options. Personally, I think that getting the Ion is going to be a disappointment in the long run. The Ion is cheap tat and one does wonder how much of the vinyl's quality will come through with that £50 usb player from Maplin. It's also limited in its file format. Personally, if I had it my way, I'd buy that vinyl player from RS and offer to transfer his records at 24/96 or even 24/192kHz. I'd take a copy for myself, obviously, and send him some Dvd's of the resulting recordings.

I prefer to give him the options to this stuff and let him decide. I think it's better to have all the solutions on the table and then he can decide. As as aside, I'm self-employed and don't get much work, but I still strive for the best I can afford. Queen tought me that if something's worth doing, it's worth doing right, e.g. not half-assed! Amen Queen!

Adam.


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Posted: 23 Nov 09, 08:36 Edit this post Reply to this post Reply with Quote

"I prefer to give him the options to this stuff and let him decide"

Which is exactly what I did.  [img=/images/smiley/msn/wink_smile.gif][/img]


"Just tryin' to have a little fun, folks..."