Audiophile vinyl, worth every penny

Posted by on August 23, 2016 . .

Not all vinyl records are created equal. In fact, you might be surprised to find out that some record companies are cutting corners.

With vinyl record sales continuing to soar at a staggering rate, it’s not surprising that vinyl record pressing companies are struggling to keep up with demand. And in some cases, corners are being cut. While these growing pains can be considered a normal side-effect of an industry rapidly expanding after laying practically dormant for the last few decades, it can still be disappointing.

As much as it pains me to say this, some vinyl reissues have been remastered from high quality digital sources, a practice frowned upon by the vinyl purest.

I’m often asked how I identify a quality record pressing, one that follows the true analogue production work flow. Unfortunately, there is no simple answer.

The problem is that few artists disclose this information, and it becomes an educated guess based on previous experience with particular labels and musicians in relation to the quality of the finished pressing.

Following the true analogue process requires more of an investment in time, people, and equipment. This makes it difficult to justify the cost in the face of modern technology, not to mention the impact on the bottom line and final price point of vinyl.

Having just destroyed your trust in Vinyl quality, you should also know that there are record pressing companies out there that are producing premium audiophile vinyl pressings that are as good if not better than the original 1st pressing (well in my opinion anyway). The companies I am referring to are Analogue Productions, ORG, Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab, RTI and Pallas Group to name a few.

JJ’s Vinyl stock vinyl pressings from all of these companies and a couple of my favourite audiophile vinyl pressings are below.

Dire Straits
Brothers in Arms
(Numbered Limited Edition
180g 45rpm 2LP)
Mobile Fidelity
$84.95
Cat Stevens
Tea for the Tillerman
(Limited Edition 200g LP)
Analogue Productions
$71.95
 
Jeff Buckley
Grace
(180g 45rpm 2LP)
 ORG
$89.95
 

 

These companies are at top of their game and have mastered the art of vinyl record pressing that follows the true analogue work flow, although these titles often come with higher price tags they are well worth the few extra dollars you will pay.


If these premium vinyl audiophile pressings don’t fit your budget, there are many mid-priced vinyl producing record companies that are worth having a look at, including many from the ‘Music on Vinyl’ label that consistently produce high quality pressings. You can find many of the ‘Music on Vinyl’ titles for sale from JJ’s Vinyl online store and a few examples are below.

Miles Davis
Kind Of Blue
(180g LP)
$32.95
Faith No More
Angel Dust
(180gm 2LP)
$39.95

The Clash
The Clash
(180gm)
$34.50