Tuesday, March 18th, 2008
These days, I’ve been hearing a lot of criticism aimed at the compact disc format. Vinyl is regaining popularity as people are realizing that CD’s just don’t sound the same as vinyl. Now, whether this is just a placebo effect, I’m not sure. Apparently, audiophiles can’t tell the difference between Monster Cable and coat hangers. Should we trust the human ear so much to say that we can really hear the difference between CD and Vinyl? The differences are there, surely. Vinyl carves a smooth, continuous groove around the disc, whereas CD reduces the audio quality to 44,100 slices, each having 65,536 possible levels. I’m willing to bet your average listener couldn’t tell the difference. Another thing about vinyl is that as the record progresses, more and more high frequencies are lost.
“Most people don’t realize that the distance around the inside of a 12-inch record is about half the distance than around the outside,” Golden explains. “As the distance around each revolution decreases, the high frequencies become harder for a playback stylus to read.”
Link to source
On a tangentially related side-note, I found an interesting video of how vinyl records made, check out How Vinyl Records Are Made Part 1 and Part 2. I know the vinyl vs. CD format war will never be resolved, but it’s interesting to consider when deciding between the two methods of physical distribution for your project.