High Definition Vinyl Technology

 

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HD Vinyl- involves 3d-Based topographical mapping & laser inscription technology

Digital Music News reports that a new technology has been developed to produce higher fidelity sound on vinyl records. Confirmed through a European patent filing, this new technology uses a combination of 3D based topographical mapping and laser inscription technology. Read the full press release here.

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Red Beans and Rice…and Vinyl

If you’re from New Orleans and “…you know what it means to miss…” then you’re not alone. I learned at a young age that nourishing one’s body requires some key ingredients. Never short on this list was love, dedication, and soul. Pouring yourself into the cuisine or music of New Orleans is a birth right, and I dove right in! Rather, I swam in the swamp water funk and filled my belly with meal after meal of soul satisfying cuisine. After leaving my hometown, these experiences found their way into this portable homesick remedy. The two key ingredients are: a record of  The Meters (yes, it should be the vinyl version), and Camellia Red Beans

These two homegrown items serve a joint purpose: they transport your senses back to the Big Easy. The correct vinyl mixture with an authentic bowl of red beans can cure all that ails you. This is about as close to a soul cleansing as you’ll get without an all night gorging and dancing in the Crescent City.

What do red beans and rice have in common with vinyl records you ask? More than you would think, my friend. Both The Meters records and red beans should be lovingly cared for and cleaned thoroughly. This ensures that all the soul and flavor is readily available and able to be extracted. Secondly, they both take time and patience. Whether it is soaking your red beans overnight to make them tender or selecting your Meters record rotation for cooking, these activities cannot and must not be rushed. Most importantly, red beans and rice require specific spices to achieve peak flavor. Seasoning your vinyl album and stylus tip with the appropriate amount of “spices” (Last Stylast) will allow all the analog tone to come through. I almost forgot, Don’t forget to save your bacon drippings and ham hocks, you’ll be needing those essentials to pull this off!

Both red beans and The Meters provide that quintessential staple of southern comfort. Once combined, you will know what I’m talking about. Unlike many audiophile recordings, these Meters albums aren’t sonic intricacies that are meant to be distilled through super critical listening sessions. Rather, the heart and soul of this music is felt – this is music without all the additives and preservatives. With your red beans simmering and The Meters laying it down, you will surely be in a happy place.

Click here for the receipe for Red Beans and Rice

The Meters on LP:

The Meters              Kickback

Rejuvenation         Cabbage Alley

Look-Ka Py Py      Fire on the Bayou

-C‘est le bon ton roule!

Another killer live recording of The Meters here!

Getz/Gilberto on 45 rpm

The Glossy Gatefold of Getz/Gilberto made by Analogue Productions/QRP

Getz/Gilberto* trulystands out as a timeless masterpiece of the Bossa Nova genre.

I’ve had CD re-issues of this famous album, even 24 bit digital remasters. Most recently, I even tried the HD Tracks Hi-Res version. From decent NAD CD players, to a separate Benchmark DAC-1 doing the conversion, my sonic impressions of this album changed with improved audio technologies through the years. While digital music files provided obvious conveniences, it wasn’t until I heard the 45 rpm vinyl that my audio senses were fully nourished. Playing back this record on a modified Rega P3 was breathtaking. Instruments and voices appeared from a black backdrop, and the low background noise seemed to only be the recording electronics of the time.

The piano playing of Antonio Carlos Jobim is gentle and impeccably timed. Joao Gilberto hand-picks the nylon string guitar and sings. Stan Getz plays on the song melodies with his trademark breathy/reedy sax, and Milton Banana fleshed out that quintessential bossa nova groove via drums.The glue holding this quintet together comes from the subtle but deep double bass of Sebastião Neto…And who can forget Astrud Gilberto’s soothing and sexy vocal gracing us on two famous tracks; The Girl from Impanema, and Corcovado.

Sure, I knew that this album contained those intimate recorded memories…but did I? That kind of musical cohesion and graceful bossa nova style sounded like it never had before! Not only could I hear all the intimacy of the recording session, but for the first time, the music was unforced. I heard these musicians playing together in a studio space that was until now merely a facsimile. That being said, Sonically, this 45 rpm vinyl record brings me closer to the live event than any earlier version (save for an original mint pressings).

-This is a must!

*This version was produced by Analogue Productions. Without any sonic strain, your ears will bend back with approval. No digital copies here, this was caringly transferred and mastered by George Marino.

Signal path:
Turntable: Rega P3 w/ groovetracer subplatter, carbon fiber mat, Benz Micro Silver MC

Phono Pre: Sim Audio Moon LP5.3 (hifituning fuse) (Shunyata Black Mamba>Hydra 2)

Pre Amp: Crane Song Avocet (hifituning) (Shunyata black mamba CX>Hydra 2)

Amp: Anthem MCA 2 285 watts per channel into 4 0hms (Power via Shunyata HC VTX>Hydra 2)

Speakers: Green Mountain Audio Eos HD

Power: Shunyata Hydra 2 x2 Black Mamba CX for Digital and Line Level, Hydra HC VTX for Amplifier.

Cables: Audio Magic Excallibur II Balanced XLR/Audio Magic Sorcerer speaker cable

Audiophile Music Tastes – UPDATED

I blogged and tweeted about peculiar audiophile musical tastes at T.H.E. Show Newport, and the exibitors responded with a great selection Rock and popular selections. My first shout-out must go to Optimal Enhancement of Santa Monica for playing some great Pink Floyd and Led Zeppelin records today. You musically nourished me enough to make through the…The Vinyl sounded great through your Audio Research Tube monoblocks.

I would also like to send a sincere thank you to JM Lab/Focal for playing some great music. I walked in to hear the Utopia III powered by two mono-block Devialet- D amplifiers and was surprised to hear The XX’s song VCR

The room which employed Lynx AD/DA converters with Joseph Audio monitors sounded great with the Neil Young that was briefly played – before a return to…

Thanks for Keeping it Rockin’, well a little anyways

HIFIQC

Stay tuned for a review from the folks in Norway – Hegel

Uncanny Valley of Dresden, Germany

Uncanny Valley includes this nifty poster with UV Ltd 01

Ok, ok…Here’s the last in a series of posts about a new favorite record label I discovered. Uncanny Valley from Germany released this various artists EP for Record Store Day. I was lucky enough to find a copy at my local vinyl shop. These compositions fall into the techno electronic/dub style. The track Peekaboo by Echology is a favorite – It’s filled with flowing ambience and unique sting glitches that seem to emerge from this playful composition.

Uncanny Valley created a limited run of (444 copies) UV Ltd 01 on VINYL only. Issued as a 45 rpm pressing/ misslabeled as a 331/3.

If you listen closely, you’ll notice one of the main synth sounds sorta sounds like a vocoder saying “Peekaboo.”

Records in Heavy Rotation…Organized!

File folder organizer used as vinyl LP display/holder

This clear file organizer found a second home with my record collection. My file holder turned record organizer is a stylish and inexpensive way to show off your favorite albums. It has 6 divisions, and you can fit between 2 and 4 LPs in each compartment. A clear choice for displaying your current record rotation. you can find this product at places like this.

Preventing Hearing Damage

Noise pollution is all around us, especially in the major cities of the world. experiencing this cacophony of sound is often disorienting and fatiguing. From the moment we step out our front door we are bombarded with a cluster of city sounds. Unlike our eyelids, we cannot close our ear canals with similar organs. Rather, we must voluntarily use a device that will reduce the passage of sound into the ear canal – earplugs. It makes you wonder if we had “earlids,” would our hearing be better?

Headphones/Earbuds

The use of portable music players/Ipods allows us to drown out the sounds of the city. These earbuds and headphones serve two purposes. First, they provide music reproduction for listening pleasure. Second, they passively (and sometimes actively) reduce sound from the surrounding environment. While reducing unwanted noises is welcome, directly injecting sound into your ear can pose some risks.

Although hi-fi speakers can be turned up to ear damaging levels, they have the advantage of not being strapped directly to your ear canal. Even more, speakers produce sound that travels through the air before it reaches your ears. Since air is an excellent absorber of sound, the overall sound pressure level will be reduced before it hits your ear drum. Private listening sessions on headphones and earbuds can be enjoyable, but you must excersice caution not to listen too loudly. A great article on “preventing hearing damage with headphones” can be found here.

Hearing Protection

Our hearing is an integral tool used for communication, balance, and localization. The human auditory system is truly remarkable and sensitive. An audiologist can advise you on hearing protection options to help maintain the longevity of your hearing.

Happy Listening!
Photo by: Vahan Baladouni