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  #1  
Old 03-13-2009, 01:29 AM
Garage At Large Garage At Large is offline
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Converting Vinyl to Digital

Okay, let me be totally clear. I'm a vinyl junkie for life. When my sound system comes out, records and turntables come with it. However, I need to record my records to hard drives. There are a few reasons why. First, I do not have back ups for my vinyls. So my idea is to record them to hard drives and burn CDs as backup which I will keep in locked cases and store in a closet safe and sound. Second, its practical when I get these small lounges or travel abroad to bring a digital player. Most lounges that I've been to have CD players but their dj both is not equip with Turntables or are too small to fit turntables. I have a digital player that can play from a hard drive, flash drive, ipod, etc... I intend on converting ONLY to .WAV file where I can retain most of the original recording from the vinyl record even if file size are extremely large. I have three RG Dynamics processors. The original Pro 16, the Pro 20 programmed attack and the Pro 20 Series II Programmed attack. My question to all is this: Should I record just the original vinyl to digital or should I record vinyl but go through to RG Processor before it reaches the hard drive. In essence, I will be recording the processed sound from the RG to the Hard drive. Will that create an issue if that goes through a lounge's sound system or should I do the first which is to record clean vinyl to hard drive, tug along a processor with me and connect it after my mixer but before it enters the lounge's sound system. Also I've heard about an Apogee unit that really makes digital music sound close to the warmt of records. Any thoughts on that?
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  #2  
Old 03-13-2009, 01:47 AM
Kevin James Kevin James is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garage At Large
I do not have back ups for my vinyls.

Here we go again. They are records, not vinyls lol
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  #3  
Old 03-13-2009, 02:46 AM
pmdubs pmdubs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garage At Large
Also I've heard about an Apogee unit that really makes digital music sound close to the warmt of records. Any thoughts on that?

I am unsure if you mention this in regard to your files that have been converted from vinyl, or simply your digital collection....but here is a comment:

The vinyl 'sound' will be captured in your digital transfer. You need simply use excellent analog equipment and a good ADC when you make the digital copy. OK that's not so simple Playback of these transfers through a great DAC will no doubt be close enough. (pitching digital files will be the most likely source of any noticeable degradation...)

Additional processing at the capture is a no-no from an archival perspective. You want a copy of the vinyl, not a copy of a dj set right?

My 02

Erik
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  #4  
Old 03-13-2009, 05:17 AM
Laurin Laurin is offline
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My chain for recording is:
Grado Prestige Gold, Thorens TD 125 MKII, GSP Gran Amp 2, RME Multiface, Wavelab.

Recorded as .wav converted to .flac (no compresion!!!) taged and ready for Traktor Pro.
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  #5  
Old 03-13-2009, 09:10 AM
boogieman boogieman is offline
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I would try and keep things as simple as possible - record flat and on quartz lock, keep your peaks below 0db to avoid clipping and normalise later, with regards adding your outboard enhancements; doing this later on as you play would be my suggestion, keep the recording faithful and add funkiness later.

I use:.
Stanton 680 EL or 500 AL
Technics SP10 with SME 3009 arm
External Balanced Out Phono Preamp (can't remember brand/model at the mo)
M-Audio Delta44
Adobe Audition

I guess I could improve on the stylii choice, but I decided to go with what gets used in the field to retain a similar sound. Opinions on this appreciated. Also, what do the Grados sound like in comparison?

If you don't own an audiophile style deck, then substitute with an SL1200mk2 and you will still get excellent results, a good quality Phono preamp will make all the difference to the end result - don't settle for any ol mixer. If you can't get an external Pre, perhaps use a Urei/Bozak mixer if you want to give your wax recordings a nudge and add that well known 'colour' depth we all love round here... ;-)
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  #6  
Old 03-13-2009, 12:31 PM
whaaat whaaat is offline
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My needle dropping setup is as follows:

Heybrook TT2 w/RB600 tonearm & Shure V15xMR cartrige
Sutherland PhD phono stage
HHB Burnit CD recorder

I used to record directly to my computer using a MOTU soundcard, but this method allows me to do parallel processing. I use CD-RWs in the HHB, transfer to my computer to cut up tracks in Peak LE and do a bit of manual declicking if necessary. So while I'm editing on the computer, I can record at the same time. With this method, I can record up to four albums a day (more on the weekend!) after work, just record a side at a time, and check in every 20 minutes or so...
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  #7  
Old 03-13-2009, 12:36 PM
Garage At Large Garage At Large is offline
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Thanks for all the replies. A friend of mine loaned me his USB Nemark turntable which records through Audacity. I do have 1200s and a UREI as well as Pro Tools. Is going through the USB Nemark turntable straight to computer/hard drive worse than going through the Urei? As you can tell, I'm not a digital person. I thought getting a clean recording would be no EQ, processing or even using a pre-amp - just the clean record going to hard drive. Please correct me.
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  #8  
Old 03-13-2009, 01:01 PM
whaaat whaaat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Garage At Large
Is going through the USB Nemark turntable straight to computer/hard drive worse than going through the Urei? As you can tell, I'm not a digital person.
IMHO, yes! Those USB 'tables fill a market, but if you think about it, you're jamming a phono stage and sound card into a turntable chassis for a fairly low price. Something's gotta give.
Quote:
I thought getting a clean recording would be no EQ, processing or even using a pre-amp - just the clean record going to hard drive. Please correct me.
Due to the RIAA equalization curve that is applied to records at the cutting stage, you need a phono pre-amp (like in your Urei) to re-eq the signal and boost it to line level. Aside from that, you don't need any additional signal processing between the pre-amp and sound card. I'd suggest you buy a decent sound card for your computer (say an EMU 0202 on the low end, I'm sure you can get other suggestions), thank your friend for the loan of the Numark and return it to him!
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  #9  
Old 03-13-2009, 05:04 PM
SCHORN SCHORN is offline
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I bought one of these to do exactly what you are trying to do.

http://www.korg.com/product.aspx?pd=289
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  #10  
Old 03-13-2009, 05:25 PM
vinyl_junkie vinyl_junkie is offline
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Well I dont have CD players any longer lol but I still record some vinyls so I can listen to on ipod.

I use my usual 1210mk2 with either a Stanton 680EL or 681SE run into my Urei 1620LE then the house out goes into a M-Audio Fast Track pro which I know sounds crap (M-Audio suck..sorry but I have not heard one card by them that gets my juices flowing) Then I record into Wavelab or Logic Audio

The end result sounds like this >> http://www.zshare.net/audio/50635939584074ab/

(Recorded with a fresh Stanton 681SE)

I record at 24bit 44.1Khz as I dont like using sample rate conversion...I dither using the Apogee algorithm

Dude I just read you have pro-tools...for crying out loud Numark turntable?? NOOO lol
You dont need to be a digital person to work this one out imo, just make a high quality recording as you would usualy..either through the Urei or a good Phono Pre-Amp..use a good needle that you like the sound of and dont EQ pre-recording as I'm sure you know it's always best to eq or compress (if you must) after, it's not like we are going on tape lol
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Last edited by vinyl_junkie : 03-13-2009 at 05:33 PM.
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  #11  
Old 03-13-2009, 05:36 PM
whaaat whaaat is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCHORN
I bought one of these to do exactly what you are trying to do.

http://www.korg.com/product.aspx?pd=289
That's a nice piece of kit! Can you archive in DSD format?
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  #12  
Old 03-13-2009, 06:14 PM
T. Tauri T. Tauri is offline
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SCHORN is way ahead of the curve!
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  #13  
Old 03-13-2009, 06:17 PM
SCHORN SCHORN is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whaaat
That's a nice piece of kit! Can you archive in DSD format?

Yeah you can archive in DSD
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  #14  
Old 03-13-2009, 08:11 PM
Reticuli Reticuli is offline
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The 680 sounds like dog poo in comparison to good hi fi tips. It's an old design from before the advent of miniature, high power neodymium magnets. And 99% of the users don't even have it matched to the right phono preamp so they get nothing over 8-12khz and usually a nasty presence region at around 4-5khz. If you're going to use them for archiving, get a 330pF phono stage and a calibrated hifi tip.

I'd recommend something like the $300 Rega or Pro Ject tables that come with a cart, a 100-150pF phono preamp like the Phono Box or Bellari tube stage, and a good soundcard. My Emu 1212m has only one pair of analog inputs, but uses the same opamps and DACs as Pro Tools rack systems. Good enough, really. If you want a better tip and have the cash, check out the 30 & 40E replacements. If you end up with the Bellari or higher capacitance, check out the Nightclub mk2 + 40E combo for stellar sound.

Don't run the signal through any mixer or compressor. Well, I wouldn't feel too bad about using my PPD9000 (when it's working) for the phono stage, AD conversion, and SPDIF to the emu, but that's a budget solution.

Oh, and monitor with headphones out the soundcard's analog outs or digital out to a DAC/receiver. Don't have any music playing on the speakers.

24/192 would be nice, but it's quite a large file size and a lot of software can't work with it anyway. 24/96 is a quality standard with an infinite future ahead of it. DSD has it's high points, but you cannot process, dither, or do anything more than simple cut edits without it being converted to Narrow-PCM/Wide-DSD...which kind of defeats the purpose of using Super Audio in the first place.

Oh, and buy some big external hard drives...times two, so you have backups of the backups.
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  #15  
Old 03-13-2009, 08:24 PM
vinyl_junkie vinyl_junkie is offline
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Quote me all the specs you want, those specs mean shit to me mate, use your ears is all I will say. A good hi-fi tip will always be better yes but the 680's by any means dont sound dog shit compared most MM hi-fi carts in 100 range.
In my system and to my ears I can tell you them Stantons sound better than Ortofon's latest and greates technological advances in cart design with theyr 2M Blue which I sold swiftly.
And so why does the 681SE sound so good esp with Disco and the Urei?
I mean up there with the Grado good and thats a good sounding cart. Why get a Rega deck when he can buy a Rega arm for his 1200??? waste of money as the 1200 would be a lot better than a P2

So there you go, get RB-301's or RB-250's on your 1200's and get Grado DJ-200i's..which from what I have seen and heard stick to wax very well with the 301 arm
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  #16  
Old 03-13-2009, 09:13 PM
Reticuli Reticuli is offline
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The SE is a discontinued factory-callibrated Stanton tip, though. If you can find them, more power to you. But they were callibrated to offset the massive limitations of the Moving Iron design. I've done realtime spectrum analysis of a great many cartridges, and the high inductance of the 680 with the HP or EL tips prevents it from providing significant information above 8-11khz, and depending on the phono stage matching, a presense region in 4-5khz range. The good thing about the 680 (El1, EL2, HP) and 500 (al1, al2, Emk2) series is a remarkably flat midrange...no doubt about that.

The new Red and Blue need to be broken in, horizontally aligned properly, weighted properly, the right VTA, and the right capacitance match before I would discount them. I've talked to Ortofon about their newest hifi designs and they've put a great amount of research into them. I don't doubt they are indeed bright as reviews have stated, and I'll be the first to state their DJing tips are an outright ripoff, but their other hifi tips are incredible for their extension on top and bottom, resolution, low distortion, great variety, reasonable pricing, and interchangeability within the OM/Concorde/Super series. And hey, their DJ pricing is what allows their hifi pricing to be so low for what you get. Not to mention if you scratch, the Ortofon djing tips are still lower distortion and flatter than the Shure m44 series...so they have a purpose.

Grado doesn't even make a cartridge body that is sheilded. You can't even let your CD players near them. I liked the way the 200i sounded, but requiring 3 grams downforce and charging $55 per replacement tip on something that tracks worse than a 680 elliptical is no bargain to me.

That said, buying Rega arms for your Technics isn't a bad idea at all. Kudos. Just realize you'll have to set up the hifi tip anew everytime you go about archiving. If you have a spare 1200, go for it. But I certainly wouldn't say a direct drive motor, even a Technics, is going to be better than a belt drive. I also prefer the Pro Ject system of antiskate over spring systems, but that's just me. Regardless, I would still recommend getting a good outboard phono preamp for archiving with either adjustable capacitance or that is matched to your intended cart, and to not use any compressor or mixer in the path to the soundcard.
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Last edited by Reticuli : 03-13-2009 at 09:22 PM.
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  #17  
Old 03-13-2009, 11:39 PM
pmdubs pmdubs is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reticuli
T But I certainly wouldn't say a direct drive motor, even a Technics, is going to be better than a belt drive.

Not wanting to get into a pissing match here, so lets say its a matter of opinion and to each there own, but I seriously disagree here. There are good belt drives, good rim drives and good direct drives; but the top rated deck lists almost always include several (if not mostly) direct drives. At any rate the sl1200 family is way superior to any new belt drive under $1500 imo, including the Rega p1-p3.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Garage At Large
I thought getting a clean recording would be no EQ, processing or even using a pre-amp - just the clean record going to hard drive. Please correct me.
If you can afford it a good analog phono-pre is the best way to go, but it is possible to go 'direct' and use a digital riaa correction filter. You still have to have an excellent pre and the ability to make sure the cartridge is correctly loaded, so its not really an easier road, but its doable. PM me if you want a link to a decent digital filter as I described. I know someone who does a pretty good transfer using the Metric Halo firewire ULN2 AD with said digital correction filter...

Whatever the decision stay away from the $200 usb turntables!

Cheers,

Erik
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  #18  
Old 03-14-2009, 11:00 AM
T. Tauri T. Tauri is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmdubs
You still have to have an excellent pre and the ability to make sure the cartridge is correctly loaded, so its not really an easier road, but its doable.

Bingo... Decent phono pres and good analog RIAA compensation are not that hard to come by. There isn't much reason to do otherwise but fashion.

Peece,
T. Tauri
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  #19  
Old 03-16-2009, 11:53 AM
Garage At Large Garage At Large is offline
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Thanks for all the advice. My record collection is around 6,000. But will only convert classic disco, early house music and of course Garage tunes. I have to get this right so if anyone in the NYC area would like the job just to configure the setup, I will pay $$$ for your expertise. I have all the equipment needed just would like someone to make sure all the bases are covered and I will do the rest. PM me if you are interested. Peace to all.
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  #20  
Old 03-17-2009, 06:57 AM
darrylfunk darrylfunk is offline
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i'd second ret,
his findings are very close to mine.

i'm afraid ortofon dissing means you just have'nt matched it to your gain stages.

match your cart to the phono stage its very important.

the m audio converters are not bad to be honest i have remastered some tracks for release through m audio gear when its correctly and accurately set up you get studio quality results.

this is transcription.

dont misjudge what ret is saying !!!
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  #21  
Old 03-17-2009, 08:39 AM
Garage At Large Garage At Large is offline
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The Pro Tools I have is the old 001 system. Some folks say the pre's on the 001 are much better than the newer LE systems. As previously mention, I would much prefer paying someone for their expertise in this area as opposed to trial and error.
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  #22  
Old 03-18-2009, 11:37 AM
djdbo djdbo is offline
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This is my first post as I am a new member, so excuse me if I break the rules or something. That being said...

I believe that audio is a matter of taste! Some people have posted some really good tips, so try a couple, but make it sound how you like it!

I say grab your favorite cartridge, plug into your favorite mixer (If you like the sound of the bozak or urei, and have one, use it!) use your protools and make it happen. Just remember:

1. watch your gains so you don't distort the original
2. Leave your original recording the way it is, save as a new file, then put in whatever plug-ins you want so you can go back and do it again if you want without having to re-record the original. Remember, the more you do it, the more you will learn. You'll probably want to go back and remaster your originals.
3. I don't recommend too much eq, I usually roll off at 40hz, that's about it. Remember, your recordings will go through another eq stage at the club.
4. Get some good plug ins! I recommend the waves bundle. It has a bunch of stuff good for cracks and pops in the vinyl.
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  #23  
Old 03-18-2009, 01:20 PM
Garage At Large Garage At Large is offline
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Thank you. I do have the wave bundle. I guess I have my hands full when it comes to cracks and pops in the music. I was actually going to leave them in for authentic feel of records.
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  #24  
Old 03-18-2009, 01:33 PM
Garage At Large Garage At Large is offline
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Scorn, I'm kind of digging the Korg on the link you posted. I will check it out. In any case it will be a fair amount of work. I guess I better get started.

http://www.korg.com/product.aspx?pd=289
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  #25  
Old 03-18-2009, 01:37 PM
djdbo djdbo is offline
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Then leave em!

Do what you like! No 2 sets of ears are alike, so no 1 opinion on the way a recording should sound is correct. There is only opinions that most people share. I like some of the pops and cracks too. It gives the record some character. I'll take them out a lot of times because I know my audience doesn't agree with my opinion on them. lol I would throw a limiter on it so the pops and cracks don't blow speakers. Some of them can be pretty powerful. Remember to have fun with it. That's what DJing, mixing, engineering, mastering, etc is supposed to be in the first place.
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