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Noonie

1990’s to 2010’s Vinyl

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Noob here considering getting into vinyl as a means to furthering my love of music.  Last 10-15 yrs I’ve listened only to music from iPod and iPhone.  I mainly listen to music via headphones with Amp and DAC.  And in the car.  I have no stereo equipment.  I have a really good vinyl store close by that sells used equipment, refurbished by an experienced audio technician from a popular concert venue (seems both knowledgeable and a great guy who I can trust).  Considering buying through them.

 

But before I buy anything I’m wondering if this is for me, considering my musical taste. My favourite music is alt rock (PJ, Smashing Pumpkins, etc, etc.).  I also like some classic rock and Jazz.  I have about 1500 songs that I listen to, though I’m still discovering new music (from we’re and older bands).  I’m not looking to become a collector of 1st presses.  I want to buy records that I want to sit down and enjoy, flipping though the booklets, reading about the music, hopefully feeling more connected by adding the more hands on experience...but maybe I’m reaching?).  I’m guessing these records would mainly be new, as the bins I’ve looked through don’t have much of what I like.

At this point I’m interested in hearing from anyone who was in my position and how their journey has been.

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Hi, welcome! Unfortunately the late 80s/early 90s was the era when vinyl production massively slowed down and was over taken by cassettes/cds. Early presses of some of the records you’ll want to obtain can go into the 100s if not 1000s. The good news is most these albums have been repressed a bunch and you can get decent sounding copies for a reasonable price either online or from your local record store. There are tonnes of good deals to be had if you know where to look (I’ll come back with some suggestions when I’ve got a bit more time)

Edited by LPancakes

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16 hours ago, Noonie said:

I want to buy records that I want to sit down and enjoy, flipping though the booklets, reading about the music, hopefully feeling more connected by adding the more hands on experience...

You may want to reconsider some of your word choices.

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If you have the time to sit down and listen to music I say go for the vinyl experience.  If music is more background music for you stick with digital. 

 

I will note a receiver/ amp will increase the sound quality substantially. For a long time, I ran my turntable through powered speakers and it was find... so i thought. Then i bought a vintage receiver i stumbled upon at the thrift store and wow didn't know what i was missing out on. 

 

I have a modest set up, cost about $500 (receiver was only $20). Saving up for a better turntable, but currently using the  Audiotechnica LP20 with a red ortofon cartridge and klipsch speaker (bought on sale).

 

 

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Your first mistake was asking a bunch of snarky collectors if you should get involved in the hobby. 

 

Honestly, I’m not sure what response you would expect here because obviously we all enjoy buying records. Stuff is pressed and repressed constantly, especially now. As far as your musical tastes they’re completely irrelevant because practically everything under the sun is available on vinyl. 

 

All in all its an expensive hobby so if you’re willing to invest the money and time to actually listen to what you buy than of course you should dabble. You’ll get out of it as much or as little as you want and put in. There are setups for every budget, do some research and get what you can afford. But as someone mentioned above don’t buy that crosley crap. 

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1990s through modern releases just about capture 99% of what I listen to and own.  I've been exploring music and buying vinyl for at least 10 years now, so I do believe there's enough out there to keep you busy – especially since I feel like there's always something on my want list, or additional bands I've been sleeping on for a decade or more.  It never really ends but that's also the appeal of it for me.

 

Like others have said, you really get out of it whatever you're willing to put in.  Focus on establishing a decent turntable and setup before prowling Discogs or trying to amass a collection.  It sounds like you're interested in the tangible benefits of enjoying music in a physical format... and in the case of vinyl, there really is no better medium for that.  It can be a bit of a rabbit hole but as long as you're not obsessed with tracking down 1st presses, I think you'll be just fine.  And like LPancakes said, reissues, represses, and anniversary editions are all the rage these days.  Occasionally you'll stumble across the obvious money grab that simply brickwalled the original audio for increased volume and nothing else, but for the most part there is almost always a benefit to being patient and checking the boards now and then.  I get into a lot of bands late only to find that there's a deluxe / expanded / anniversary edition or boxset of their discography right around the corner, or just released, and it works out pretty nicely.

Edited by Derek™

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I think you can start collecting no matter what your preferences are. One thing vinyl has done for me has expanded my tastes, and introduced me to new things. Browsing here and reddit (r/vinyl) and following vinyl-centered instagram accounts and reading comments and reviews has led to me listening to new things. As well as shopping in store- you'll see something that looks cool and throw it on their demo setup and end up bringing it home. 

 

Expanding a bit on Derek's advice-- If you want to enjoy the hobby definitely focus on setup first. It's easy to want to skimp on your first bit of gear and spend the $ on records, but consider the fact that if you can get a good quality TT, amp/receiver, and speakers together, you'll enjoy each and every record even more, and maintain them more easily. A lot of people spend $100 on a Crosley or LP60 and then have trouble playing some of their albums due to poor construction on the cheapie tables. The ceramic stylus common to those turntables wears down quickly and starts damaging your records. Furthermore, if you buy just 10 new albums and that's at least $200 into the hobby, much more than some people pay for their first TT. 

 

What I'd do is check your local craigslist, as well as USAudioMart, or any stores near you for some good vintage gear that's been cared for and runs smooth. Quality and performance of that stuff will far outweigh new gear at the same price point. If you can save up $300-500 for your first setup, it'll be several years before you'll consider upgrading. Good luck and keep us posted!

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