View Full Version : ripping vinyl

Richard Elen
2005-03-11, 05:26
Glad you found the comments helpful. BTW, of course I could have
suggested Googling for tips on this, but a) I assumed people would know
to do that anyway, and b) I have my own ideas on this and I don't know
what you'll be told if you pick up stuff indiscriminately from the Net! :)

One thing I should have mentioned is that you should do your digital
conversion at 24-bit word length. Most decent A/D converters claim
24-bit resolution and some of them nearly manage it. 24 bit means a
theoretical dynamic range of 144dB, which of course you can't do in real
life. A properly-dithered 20-bit signal has more dynamic range
capability than we can hear, but not everything is properly dithered and
having a few bits in hand is both easy and safe. If you do any DSP
operations, you add bits. When you've finished, dither back down to
whatever suits you, using TPDF dither or a super-optimised dither like
UV22HR (NOT Pow-r or SuperBitmapping).

As far as sample rates are concerned, you might want to sample at 88.2
or 96 kHz if you can. This is actually complete overkill (52kHz is quite
enough) but if you sample at lower rates you may run into audible
artefacts caused by filtering. In a professional system using
oversampling this isn't an issue, but unless you have specific knowledge
that this is how the system does it, playing safe just makes the files
bigger. After you've finished processing, by all means sample rate
convert - you may find that you get better-sounding results

Is ripping from vinyl worth the effort? Yes of course, if your fave
albums never came out on CD. My vinyl collection now consists solely of
discs that have my name on them somewhere and never got reissued. Often
but not always I have master copies on tape, but it's nice to have the
artwork for ego satisfaction purposes. :)

Is it expensive to get good results? Yes and no. If the vinyl is the
only way you know the album, then you want your ripped version either to
sound as good, or to sound good enough for the application - if you
always listen at home on your home theater system you will want higher
quality (and maybe lossless encoding); if you always listen instead on
your iPod Shuffle with tiny in-ear phones, you may be less critical.

On Windows, you could start with an Audigy 2 or 4 system with the
outboard converter box, for example, and Adobe Audition, formerly
CoolEdit; or on Mac with an Apogee MiniMe and DSP Quattro, for example;
a decent turntable and a new stylus, and get excellent results. The main
thing you'll probably spend is time, if you want to de-click and
de-noise and do it carefully and at least semi-manually to get a mostly
flawless result. Then keep those originals for next year when everything
is lossless and higher quality and your original AAC files are no longer
good enough and you want to reprocess them...:)

Hope this helps a little more...
--Richard E

> From: Jonathan Buschmann <Jonathan.Buschmann (AT) ericsson (DOT) com>

> Thanks. Great info.
> I had read some place before that ripping LPs was was probably more
> trouble than it was worth. Then I saw people on Slim MLs speaking about
> things like ripping to 24bit samples, and I thought maybe I shouldn't
> throw away my LPs yet! OTOH from what you say I guess I shouldn't regret
> having rebought many of my favorite albums on CD. (The thing that bugs
> me ofcourse is paying the IP rights twice. Wouldn't it be great if music
> houses were required give you a rebate on your purchase of a CD by
> trading in an LP!)
> Still, it sounds like an expensive proposition to get good results.