Sonic Grade: F
If you bought the Classic Record Heavy Vinyl pressing of Deja Vu, you should know by now how badly Classic Records ripped you off. If you feel disrespected, you should. They took your money and gave you practically nothing of value for it. The right CD (not the current one, that’s for damn sure) is dramatically better sounding than their vinyl reissue.
On the other hand, if you’re not too picky about sound quality and just want to play new records, perhaps because old records are hard to find and often noisy, then fine, the Classic should get that job done for you.
We of course want nothing to do with records like those remastered by Classic Records. We only want to play good sounding records, and most Classic Records, including this title, are definitely not good sounding, not by our standards anyway.
Records Are in a Sorry State – Here’s What You Can Do About It
It’s a sad state that we currently find ourselves in, but is it really any different than it used to be? Audiophiles used to like half-speeds, they used to like Japanese pressings, they used to like direct to disc recordings with questionable sound and even more questionable music.
Now they like SACDs, Heavy Vinyl and 45s. If you ask me it’s the same old wine in a different bottle.
The path out of that morass is exactly the path we have taken and charted for everyone, free of charge.
With our approach to finding the best sounding records, cleaning them the way we do, playing them against each other the way we do, using the sound improving devices and equipment we recommend, we know you can succeed. If we can do it you can do it.
No One to Guide Them
Most audiophiles have never heard of us. They have no one to guide them in this devilishly difficult record and audio game. They are mostly self-taught, which is precisely the heart of the problem. You can teach yourself pretty much all you need to know in this hobby, but it requires a huge expenditure of time and resources: thousands of hours and ten of thousands of dollars at a minimum. A few hours a week won’t get you very far.
I should know. I was one of those guys who put in a few hours a week for about the first twenty years I spent in audio and in the end I sure didn’t have much to show for it. It was only when I seriously dedicated myself to audio and records sometime in the ’90s that I started making real progress.
With more than ten years of nose-to-the-grindstone effort I was ready — eager even — to give up on audiophile vinyl as the dead end I now know it to be.
How Bad Are They, Really
How many can say that? How many audiophiles know how bad their audiophile pressings really are? One per cent? Two per cent? Five?
However many it is, it’s about the same percentage of audiophiles who actually take the hobby seriously and work hard at it. That’s my guess anyway.
Just try telling that to anyone on an audio forum. You will be shouted down in no time by the masses who can’t abide the idea that the latest audiophile pressings on which they’ve spent their hard earned money aren’t the best. Of course they’re the best! What else could they be? Everybody says so. Everybody knows it’s true. The reviewers in the magazines and my fellow forum posters all told me they were the best, so who the hell do you think you are to say otherwise?
What Works For Us…
This is the problem. Unless you can clean and play your “old” records right, and you actually have some good copies to play, none of what we say here will make much sense. You have to hear it for yourself, but to hear it for yourself you have to do a great number of things right, or at least better than you used to do them.
Not to put too fine a point on it, you have to do it the way we do it.
It works for us and we know it can work for you.
There is such a thing as progress. The word is getting out, slowly, but it is getting out. These things take time. Hell, people are still digging their way out of that rat hole called the CD. And who would have predicted that the CD would lose market share to the vinyl record? Or that cassettes would make a comeback?