I’ve recently been getting into vinyl records. Not in that audiophile way, but rather in a ‘these are cheap and the music is amazing and rare’ kind of way!
Any of you who know me could imagine that one of the first things I start looking into is importing used vinyl records from Japan. I quickly made a Sendico account and started buying vinyl bundles from people having clearouts on Mercari JP and Yahoo Auctions!
Now these bundles are absolutely rock bottom pricing, we’re talking £3-5 per disc including all the shipping costs. As you might expect, they’ve been stored in attics for decades and they are quite dirty and in need of a clean!
The first step is physical cleaning which for me consists of
- Shibata stylus (it reads past some of the damaged caused by conical styli)
- Linear tracking turntable (it reads “perfectly” and has a repeat button)
- Using a Spinclean-clone device
- Dusting the record with a velvet brush & using a stylus brush before the first and second plays
- Recording the record 3-6 times
The second step is digital cleanup. This stage is a little more complex but almost all the time I’m able to remove all the clicks from a record.
This is where my discovery of something rather interesting happened. I was digitally cleaning up one of the Watanabe Minayo records I have in my collection and I noticed a strange form of click. It’s not a common jolt waveform where the stylus hits something, but rather a unique wiggly waveform.
After being baffled by these clicks I became convinced they weren’t dust but rather existed on the actual masters for this LP. So, I decided to investigate the matter further … So I ordered the same album but this time on CD. I’ll truly know what is happening when I look at the CD version right?
To my surprise, I was right. These click sounds are actually on the CD as well as the LP in exactly the same places (outside of less L/R separation on the LP – further proving it was written as audio to the LP.
Here’s a little sample:
It’s subtle but noticeable for sure!
Hopefully you found this interesting, I hope to make some more posts on vinyl record processing in the future, especially removing clicks as it is quite an art to master but an amazingly useful tool to obtain rare music cheaply! (A scratches LP sells for a fraction of the cost of a good condition LP!)
Til vi møtes igjen, ha det~