Classical on Vinyl
Dec 9, 2007 at 1:52 PM Thread Starter Post #1 of 12

tim_j_thomas

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Happy Holidays All!

How's the selection of classical on vinyl these days? Are older recordings still available? Are they good quality? What about new releases?

For those that have classical on vinyl, how does it compare to CD? Is it worth it?

I primarily listen to classical, but don't want to invest much time investigating what it takes to put together a vinyl rig if the material just isn't available.

Thanks,
 
Dec 9, 2007 at 4:08 PM Post #2 of 12

appophylite

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If you look around, you'll find a lot of classical on vinyl. My sister picked up a vinyl rig for me for Christmas. It's nothing stellar but it will get me by as my first vinyl rig. I went looking for some vinyl and found the Literary Council in my city selling vinyl records at 25 cents a pop. I picked up:

Eugene Ormandy-Richard Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra
Max Goberman-Vivaldi: Concerto's For Woodwinds And String Orchestra
Michael Tilson Thomas-Orff's Carmina Burana
Maurice Andre-Pachelbel Canon
Eugene Ormandy-Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker Ballet
Charles Munch-Berlioz Requiem

With the exception of a minor bit of scratching on one side of Also Sprach Zarathustra, there are few major blemishes on any of the records and all of them sound stellar. I still have bins and bins of records to look through at the Literary Council alone so I haven't even looked elsewhere in the city for any and I certainly haven't looked, but would expect vinyl to be much more widely available online.
 
Dec 10, 2007 at 8:31 AM Post #3 of 12

Uncle Erik

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appophylite, your sister rocks. You better find her something nice for Christmas!

Tim, the funny thing is that classical is not being released so much on vinyl these days. It is out there, but many new classical recordings are on SACD. If you haven't given SACD a shot yet, you might want to pick up a Sony SCD-CE595. I got a refurb for about $80. It delivers the goods with SACD, especially for the price. I upgraded about a year ago, but passed the CE595 to my father who likes it.

The good news is (as appophylite mentioned) that there is a ton of classical on vinyl. I got three albums yesterday for $0.75. Seems like most vinylphiles are going after rock and jazz, so those of us who like classical get plenty of bargains and a good selection. Same with country, if you're into it.

So, while you're not going to find many new releases, you are going to find a ton of old ones. I think going vinyl for classical is a good idea just for that. It is, by far, the last expensive legal route to lots of music. Head over to the Source Component Forum if you need help choosing a rig.
 
Dec 10, 2007 at 7:56 PM Post #4 of 12

appophylite

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Quote:

Originally Posted by Uncle Erik /img/forum/go_quote.gif
appophylite, your sister rocks. You better find her something nice for Christmas!


Don't I know it. Amusingly enough, everybody in the family demanded that I open it and try it out because they thought it was a joke when I said vinyl still sounded good. About an hour later, the vinyl player has now found a place in the middle of the living room, where my both my dad and sister are entertaining themselves with it as well.
 
Dec 10, 2007 at 8:22 PM Post #5 of 12

Sarchi

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Quote:

Originally Posted by tim_j_thomas /img/forum/go_quote.gif
How's the selection of classical on vinyl these days? Are older recordings still available? Are they good quality? What about new releases?




Many older recordings were never issued on CD. Used classical vinyl quality (and condition) tends to vary widely, with imports from Europe usually faring well, and domestic issues not so well. New releases are CD only. The major classical labels abandoned vinyl in the mid-80's and have never looked back.

New classical pressings (reissues) of golden age recordings are plentiful, and expensive. The largest selection are from Speakers Corner and Classic Records.

Quote:

Originally Posted by tim_j_thomas /img/forum/go_quote.gif
For those that have classical on vinyl, how does it compare to CD? Is it worth it?




It's worth it if you have the time and money to invest. If you want plug and play, no. If you want to keep the dollar investment low, no.
 
Dec 10, 2007 at 10:33 PM Post #7 of 12

jsaliga

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About five months ago I bought 12 brand new boxed sets of Operas on Vinyl from Decca's London Records label for $1 on eBay.

operas.jpg


There are occasionally great deals to be found but you have to dig for them.

--Jerome
 
Dec 10, 2007 at 11:35 PM Post #8 of 12

mbhaub

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I have to say that since the advent of cd and sacd, my vinyl collection doesn't get a lot of use. I gave/threw away a small fortune of lps 8 years ago and had no regrets. I kept some 1000 lps because at that time there were no cd versions. That's changed, too. Some people swear vinyl sounds better than cd. I don't agree. I don't miss pops, skipping, distortion at all. But -- there is a reason to still buy the occasional lp: operas. These can be very expensive, and what better way to sample something I don't know if I'd like? I haunt a local used bookseller with a huge multistore operation. Last month I picked up Wagner's Lohengrin with Kubelik on DG for $1.50. Appears to have never been played. The Davis Sibelius set on Philips cost $1.25. It Tritico by Puccini with Maazel on CBS cost a whopping 75 cents! But sometimes I pay more. I got the entire Bernstein/Mahler symphonies on Columbia (now Sony) for $5. If I don't like these, off to Salvation Army they go. No big loss. If anyone lives near Princeton, NJ, the Princeton Record Exchange has an astonishing amount of vinyl available.
 
Dec 19, 2007 at 8:00 PM Post #9 of 12

BAwig05

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Quote:

Originally Posted by appophylite /img/forum/go_quote.gif
If you look around, you'll find a lot of classical on vinyl. My sister picked up a vinyl rig for me for Christmas. It's nothing stellar but it will get me by as my first vinyl rig. I went looking for some vinyl and found the Literary Council in my city selling vinyl records at 25 cents a pop. I picked up:

Eugene Ormandy-Richard Strauss: Also Sprach Zarathustra
Max Goberman-Vivaldi: Concerto's For Woodwinds And String Orchestra
Michael Tilson Thomas-Orff's Carmina Burana
Maurice Andre-Pachelbel Canon
Eugene Ormandy-Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker Ballet
Charles Munch-Berlioz Requiem

With the exception of a minor bit of scratching on one side of Also Sprach Zarathustra, there are few major blemishes on any of the records and all of them sound stellar. I still have bins and bins of records to look through at the Literary Council alone so I haven't even looked elsewhere in the city for any and I certainly haven't looked, but would expect vinyl to be much more widely available online.



These are exceptional recordings! Lucky you!

One item not on CD is Yehudi Menuhin playing Harold in Italy on the viola with Colin Davis conducting. I also picked up some Ibert conducting Ibert, and Villa-lobos conducting his music as well. Check out your local colleges, they don't always keep all their records!
 
Dec 21, 2007 at 1:35 AM Post #10 of 12

sejarzo

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I took about 50 near-pristine DG and Philips LP's to a large used record vendor on the north side of Chicago a couple of years ago, and he wanted none of it--even recordings that were not released on CD (or those DG's that were released on CD, but without remastering and sounded atrociously bright.)

So I guess it depends on where you are. Me, I figured that if there were a market for used classical vinyl, it would be at this place (large shop, near audiophile stores, in a major metro) but that wasn't the case.
 
Dec 21, 2007 at 8:40 AM Post #11 of 12

308med

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I just bought a bunch of classical at a nearby Salvation Army thrift store for $10. There's so much good music out there that people just throw away...
 

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