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Which hardware?

Discussion in 'High resolution audio' started by birdcage, Mar 2, 2007.

  1. birdcage

    birdcage Member

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    I have a Sota turntable, Grado G cartridge ($500.00 Can.). PS Audio 1V preamp.
    Good motherboard with sound card built in, all necessary cables etc.

    Do I have the equipment to make excellent vinyl to wave transfers?

    I understand I will need software. Any suggestions? I care more about
    quality than price.

    Regards

    gerry
     
  2. wilkes

    wilkes Regular member

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    Gerry, the bad news is that your built-in sound chip will not give excellent transfers - it will be far too noisy. Most of the onboard chips have dreadful S/N ratios - often as high as -35dB before the noise begins. I strongly recommend a decent sound card - avoid Creative Lies - oops, Creative Labs. These are gamers cards only.
    M-Audio, TerraTec, RME (Budget permitting) are all good options.
    Look for the largest possible values for S/N & Dynamic Range as a lot of "24 bit" cards actually only deliver little better than 16 bit performance.

    Software.
    This depends on the final media you are wanting to put the vinyl onto.
    For CD, and assuming the vinyl is in good condition & not badly scratched, you will be working to a 16 bit 44.1KHz end result. If DVD is your final destination (I personally prefer DVD-Audio which allows up to 24/192 in stereo although IMHO this is overkill, and 24/96 does everything you will need with headroom) then you will be working to a sample rate of 48 or 96KHz, at a bit depth of 24.
    Getting the recordings onto CD is simplicity itself, with many packages out there that will record the music & put it onto CD.
    For DVD-A, I can recommend Cirlinca's DVD-Audio Solo at $35, or Minnetonka Audio's discwelder range at a little more money all the way up to a serious chunk of change depending on just how far you want to go.
    For DVD-Video, there are also options:
    Media Chance Labs DVD-Lab Pro
    Adobe's EncoreDVD - great integration with all other Adobe apps and has everything you need
    Sony's DVD-Architect (I do not own this, but a lot of people speak very highly of it)

    What is your final destination here?
     
  3. birdcage

    birdcage Member

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    Thank you for your thoughtfull response. I'm still looking at options
    for storing. I plan to copy my vinyl (excellent condition) first, to a large HD., second, overflow to DVD-r. I have connected my hi-end speakers to my computer and wish to listen my music at click of a mouse. Read old & lazy. I have disabled my prime sound system and an option would be to use my Meriden mono blocks and PS Audio 5.7 preamp with the computer. Presently I use an enhanced Luxman (upgraded caps)integrated for computer sound. Cosidering my computer music files are
    mpg & hma the Luxman is ok. Cables are Monster. I'm just feeling my way. I would like to buy a resonable software program to get started and upgrade as needed. I'm 77 years old and my hearing is no longer 30 years old. So experience with this new to me medium will dictate
    where I wll go.

    regards

    gerry
     
  4. wilkes

    wilkes Regular member

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    Gerry.
    I would honestly recommend that you don't use any type of perceptual or lossy encoding process at all.
    If computer playback is the way you want to go - and there is no single reason why not - then WMA also have a lossless option. Plus the encoders are free from Microsoft.
    You'll be wanting to record the vinyl at 24/48, and encode to WMA Pro format.
    Software.
    For the actual recording, you can do a surprising amount of good work using Open Source applications.
    Audacity has a lot of adherents, and will capture your vinyl perfectly.
    Once they have been recorded, the free Microsoft encoders will handle the WMA conversion for you.
    See http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windowsmedia/forpros/encoder/default.mspx
     
  5. jjolson

    jjolson Member

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    Many sound cards come with a decent enough recording app, then you want something for trimming tracks and then a program for tagging (Tag&Rename is decent shareware).

    A good alternative to WMA is FLAC (http://flac.sourceforge.net/), and when one think of 24/48 in FLAC one also easily thinks of Squeezebox and Transporter (http://slimdevices.com/)
     
  6. birdcage

    birdcage Member

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    Wilkes--I have my system up and running. I have made only one vinyl to HD recording. It is not a record that I'm very familiar with Dave Grusin. I sounds ok. I used the equipment I listed in an earlier message. In adddition I used Groove Mechanic. My motherboard is Asus
    ATN 8X -x c media. I will start with my favorite records tomorrow.
    I was surprised at how easy it was to get started.

    I would appreciate your comments.

    gerry
     

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