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Vinyl Transfers FAQ

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
I get a lot of requests for transfer or remastering jobs. Along with the requests comes a multitude of questions.

In an effort to help the curious, here are some of the most FAQ I get and the responses:

- Is this safe?
Absolutely. I have received hundreds of recordings from as far away as Japan and India and not one has been damaged by a transfer.

- Is this legal?
Absolutely. The RIAA "fair use act" states that you can make copies of any recording that you own.

- How long does it take?
The quick answer: It depends. With vinyl, the transfer takes as long as it does to play the record plus anywhere from 2 – 20 hours or more for the post-processing and remastering.

- How can I learn?
You can start by using Google. Do a search for “vinyl transfer” or “vinyl rip” and your bound to get a ton of results. Read as much as you can. There are dozens of books available on how to master. Most are very good and provide you with tricks of the trade to help you understand how things are done a certain way.

Most importantly, PRACTICE! As in most cases, practice makes perfect. Don’t expect to learn this overnight. Transferring and post-processing takes a lot of time and effort to get right but it sure is FUN! Most importantly, use your ears!

- I don’t have expensive gear. What should I get?
Believe it or not – you don’t need expensive gear to do this. I have heard transfers done on $18,000.00 turntables and a $35.00 used Technics table and the sound quality is ALMOST THE SAME!

The sound you get will mainly depend on the quality of the vinyl and the cartridge you are using. This need not be an expensive (well….at least not that much) hobby.

- Can you tell me what tricks you use to get the best sound?
Sure. Not too many engineers or hobbyists will tell you their secrets but I will. The things I use the most to get the best sound is…….my ears. There are other tricks here and there but they only work if you listen carefully. You can pull off a decent remaster using a cheap 5 band graphic EQ if you listen carefully. Obviously it will pale in comparison to a GML parametric but you’d be surprised what you do with cheap gear and a little of know how.

- What’s the most important advice you can give me?
HAVE FUN! There is no use doing a transfer if your going to be fretting over every single detail. Sometimes you can get perfection but other times you’ll get very good or decent. The results can vary but as long as you enjoyed getting the result, then all else shouldn’t matter because you can always try again.
post #2 of 3
"The quick answer: It depends. With vinyl, the transfer takes as long as it does to play the record plus anywhere from 2 – 20 hours or more for the post-processing and remastering."

So, umm, the remastering and post processing are for the RIAA curve?
post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 
No - the remastering is removing the rumble, noise (click, hiss, pops, etc) and EQ. Some vinyl transfers can be rather labor intensive.
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