Sunday, December 28, 2008

Comparing CD with Vinyl

Plenty of people are having the same experience and are "getting into vinyl" as they put it. I get asked a lot if "vinyl is coming back" or if "tube amps are coming back" and I just inform them that they never left.

I have been listening to vinyl since 1976, that has been 32 years already. I have not changed listening to CD. Thought CD is more convenient to play, to store and to buy, but the vinyls are more enjoyable and realistic. Viinyl folder is larger, can see the lyrics, or article about the singer, player or composer, like reading a newspaper rather easier than reading a news viewer in a PDA format.

I have listened to a reasonably good system recently , that was a Goldmund CD player, pre-amp power amp driving a Khamar floor stand loudspeaker, the sound was sweet, quiet, clear and not having sharp edges, not too digital... but I was having a short while on some light music, need to confirm through vocal.

CD's tendency to have less depth and a 'flatter' bass and lower midrange dimensionality."
The trebre is a bit harsh even the best CD player as comparing with good Analogue playing sytem.

Anyway, I can say that the Vinyl lover isn't idiot as the CD lovers have such a bias on us ( a bunch of Vinyl lovers)



miromni said...

Analog rules! Digital will never reach analog sound quality levels. Recently, I have heard an analog audio system consisting of a Panasonic strain gauge fitted to a turntable made years ago by Bruno Puhar, here in Slovenia. He has also made the vertical turntable, which I haven`t heard, though:
Other components were Joule Electra JE-450ME preamp, Eselab phono preamp, Rowland 625 power amp and SoulSonic Impulse speakers. After hearing this system (we have listened the whole evening, actually until 2:30 AM), my first thought was: God, digital will never - never come close! I used to say audio is in the stone age, compared to live music, but on a few musical examples the sound was so lifelike it was spooky! Juliette Gréco`s voice from her sixties album was like a real human materialized in front of us! Joe Pass solo guitar record was - live guitar in front of us! Zlatko Kaucic percussion and drums were...realistic beyond belief. Even big orchestral works which I consider too tough for current state of the art audio systems, were reproduced somewhat much more believable than usually. I have heard countless top audio systems, digital and analog (even with top MC pick-up equipped turntables), but I never thought something like that was even remotely possible.
There is absolutely no way one can grasp such thing unless experienced in person. You can talk about the superiority of all new digital formats day and night long, but upon hearing a phenomenal analog rig, the discussion becomes pointless.
Those who care for music and have a reasonably good hearing abilities will recognize this profound difference the first minute. Analog has micro and macrodynamics and sounds alive, while digital may sound technically correct, but never alive.
As for the digital, I don`t know, perhaps there is a brighter future in the Pure Analog Laser-Read Format:

HK Snob said...

Hi Miromni,
Yes Analogue Rules!! You must be some kind of die hard anaogues Fans, yes, I agree!
and from those experience and knowledge on Analogue audio equipment, I beleive you are some kind of Audio guru.'
Yes, I am now Listening to this "the New Ebb, frank Chacksfield and his orchestra Recorded by London Phase 4 K35P70003. The super Analogue Disc Side two Shenandoah!!, The music was so pleasant at this midnight whilst I am blogging, Thanks and I will look into what you have mentioned!
HK Snob

Now it plays "La Mer" what a super tunes!

miromni said...

Hi, HK Snob,

yes, I`m an analog fan, but Audio guru? Well, perhaps speaker guru :-) (these are mine):


Excerpt from a SG review:

"It's a few days later, and I am back to earth, after a great amount of vinyl, with the occasional CD thrown in for comparison. Comparison? It's really not possible to compare digital music with the Strain Gauge. No part of a stereo system is completely colorless, but this cartridge really makes you aware of how an MC or MM cartridge normally colors the sound. The rendering does not seem to be analog at all. It reminds me of playing an absolute top CD player because of the silence in the background. At the same time, it's far removed from CD's - we are doing analog here.
Somebody has written of this cartridge: "If a CD had sounded like this from the very beginning, no one would have continued playing vinyl." In this hides the core of the truth - it is the SG that makes painfully clear in which way vinyl and CD's fail. Even when I imagine using a beautiful Koetsu costing more than 4000 Euros, or my own
cartridges, or a Manley Steelhead phono stage, or the nicest CD players that have graced my audio rack - most of the time something was missing. That something is present here in the sense of pure music. The bass is dry, it is pure, and the stereo image is as broad as with the best components, micro details are there in spades. At the same time, it is so frightfully realistic that it had chills running up and down my spine. Is this the end of MM and MC? I don't know, and everyone has their own taste, but I like the SG just fine. Am I praising too much? Whoever hears this cartridge can decide for themselves and condemn me if necessary. On this earth only a couple of devices can reproduce music or voice in such a way as to be described as bliss. This is one of those tiny, rare group, that is so lonely up at the top. How far can you go after this? In brief, when the SG plays, your jaw drops. Record noise? Distortion? Hum? It's not there. There is a naturalness that I have never experienced before, a total lack of coloration, a background that is so quiet that every micro detail can be heard. All of a sudden, some tracks blend into one another, where before there had been an interval, because the decay is now properly present. Does the SG sound technical? No, far from that. Analog? Not really. Digital? No. Although you wish that digital could ever sound like this. It simply has a naturalness that cannot be compared with other cartridges. It's suppleness and liquidity make for hours of pleasure in listening. It's not overwhelming, not overly dynamic, just natural."

HK Snob said...

Hi Miro,
where are you from!? I saw your Loudspeaker Web site, Can I know that you are building loudspeaker for experiment or for sale? Can I put your webiste in my HiFi Blog?

What is your profession!?

ou are really a Loudspeaker guru!
Hope I can hear more from you!
HK Snob

miromni said...

Hi HK Snob,
I have sent you an email. Loudspeakers-by-miro is my old site, SoulSonic Speakers is my new company. You can learn more about me from this interview:

I would really appreciate if you could put my website on your HiFi Blog, thanks!


miromni said...

Sorry, almost forgot, I`m from Slovenia:

HK Snob said...

Hi Miro

OK. After I have posted I will mail it to you! Thanks!
HK Snob