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I am new to collecting vinyl. And please excuse my naivety and my, probably very elementary, question.


But when I am record shopping how do I:

1) Tell the difference between a limited edition pressing

2) Tell the difference between a first run pressing


if they don't say anything on the package or sleeve? The reason I ask is because I recently was shopping and bough a couple of albums I really wanted on vinyl. So I didn't care if they were limited/first run or not. But, to my delight when I got home I found that they were. I am aware of the Discogs.com database. But I am wondering if there is a quicker way to find out just by looking at the record itself while I am searching the bins?


Any help would be appreciated. Thank you everyone!! :)



- John

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it varies greatly depending of age, country of release and how many pressings there are likely to be of a given LP so welcome to the wonderful world of vinyl and the internet trawling, book/catalogue reading and general research you have to do to work this out.


Joking aside the matrix number which is the number or code in the dead wax or runout of the record is the first place I look on older records to try and work out which pressing it is, it isn't by any means a definitive sign and there is know substitute for knowledge and experience.again


If it's sealed then that doesn't really help so again knowledge and experience are your only tools.

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There are way too many variables to answer this question generally. You would have to supply the titles and vinyl colors to even begin to find help working this out. And even then, you're only finding out for the specific titles. Every record label handles represses and reissues a little bit differently. Sometimes the same label does things differently from title to title. Way too many variables.

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You need to know the artist, title of the record. Then look it up on www.discogs.com. This has loads of pressing information on it. Also use sites

Like popsike.com to see what sort of price they sell for on eBay.

Things to help you distinguish different pressings could address, record labels, catalogue numbers, where it was recorded and mixed etc.. These can be found on the record sleeve, record sleeve spine, inserts and on the actual record label itself.

Also check the matrix the between the inner run off groves near the label. (There will be numbers and letters etc that have been etched or stamped on the record) these can indicate different pressings of the record. I hope that helps a little bit.

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