March 5, 2015

The $1,000 vinyl

Wired’s story about hot press vinyl is an interesting read. As always, sound quality is a complicated – and personal – topic.

“There’s actually little reason why any two discs should sound the same,” says Masterdisk’s Scott Hull. “A grading system based on the different significant factors makes sense: surface noise, relative distortion during playback, and things like skips and major pops.” Before this becomes a hot stamper endorsement, Hull lowers the boom: “Saying one disc is wrong and another is right is very controversial. Only the producer, the mastering, and cutting engineers really know what that record was supposed to sound like.”

May 29, 2012

Pricing digital products

I love books and music, and every now and then I watch movie. These three types of products belong to markets being disrupted right now, which means there’s a lot of moaning and whining and fear mongering going on, as well as a lot of problems when it comes to adapting.

Pricing is one of these problems.

  • I buy most of my books from Amazon and almost all of them are Kindle ebooks.
  • I buy music on vinyl and from iTunes, as well as use Spotify for streaming music on a daily basis.
  • I never ever buy movies and you won’t catch me in a cinema if I can help it, but I have been known to rent movies from Headweb.

The system works then? Nope, because the pricing is way off.

Read more →

September 25, 2011

Because it sounds better

I’m a hypocrite and I admit it, at least on principle. You see, I have no problem whatsoever to drop the famous “it just sounds better” explanation when it comes to music and vinyls. Because it does, it sounds better. The sound is just so much more alive, more real, more natural.

Which is bullshit, at least most of the time these days. Because although you can digitally remaster any album and claim that it is the best sounding version yet, that is part of the problem. Classic albums from the vinyl years were recorded and mastered for the format, not for super-crisp CDs or hardly compressed MP3s. Read more →