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Old 03-28-2013, 10:52 PM   #21
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I have had the ION for a few years and have converted over 500 songs and many whole albums to digital. It has performed well. I spent decades collecting vinyl, and have reduced my holdings considerably. I offloaded a lot of my music onto an external drive also.
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Old 03-28-2013, 11:24 PM   #22
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Originally Posted by grasshopper View Post
Sounds like a new hobby in retirement, where we have time for everything.
Just like I have used time in retirement to digitize my, my fathers and my grandfathers slides and prints, up to 10k images at this point, and not done yet. If you add the time needed to clean up slides its a great way to spend a lot of time. Digitizing the record collections is next. First step will be to winnow the duplicates and find the better of them, if I decide the record is worth digitizing.
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:11 AM   #23
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I am not an audiophile, and my record collection wouldn't be considered mint in condition. But, I have noticed the digital songs I have downloaded from iTunes, to have a far superior sound to my album conversions. I don't have any snaps or pops from the lp song conversions, however, the sound doesn't appear to be as "full" as the digital downloads.
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:18 AM   #24
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I just set up my ION iLP vinyl converter. This one converts to iTunes.
Mulligan, I am confused. What do you mean it converts to iTunes? Do you mean mp3?
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:38 AM   #25
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Originally Posted by JoeWras

Mulligan, I am confused. What do you mean it converts to iTunes? Do you mean mp3?
My terminology may be poor, as I am not well versed in this, as my sole purpose is to get music into my iPods to listen to while I walk. The ION record player/converter I bought is only iTunes compatible. The software that came with the record player synchs in only with iTunes. So once I record the LP song, it downloads directly into my iTunes music library on my laptop. I played it safe, by ordering the ION that converts to this as I have IPods that I know will download the music from my iTunes library. I am not knowledgable enough to know if an MP3 player could download the music from ITunes, or if my IPods could down load from another source where music is stored. I didn't want to get caught up in having incompatible equipment, getting mad, swearing and throwing things over this. I kept it simple and it works. It has a docking port on turntable where you can directly download the vinyl song into your IPod. I haven't tried that though. I have been impressed with the simplicity of it all.
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:56 AM   #26
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I think the main difference in the iLP and their other products is the built in docking station for idevices. All of their USB products can rip and dump to a PC. You can use the Audacity software with most any USB turntable.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:19 AM   #27
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I think the main difference in the iLP and their other products is the built in docking station for idevices. All of their USB products can rip and dump to a PC. You can use the Audacity software with most any USB turntable.
Can you purchase, say a Sony Walkman MP3, and download your songs from your ITunes into it, without having to have an IPod?
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:42 PM   #28
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Can you purchase, say a Sony Walkman MP3, and download your songs from your ITunes into it, without having to have an IPod?
If you have a computer and can download songs from the computer to the walkman then the answer is yes, as any usb turntable should be able to record to the computer. Plus of course any cd's you have can be ripped to the computer as well.
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:51 AM   #29
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I stumbled across this old thread...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulligan View Post
I am not an audiophile, and my record collection wouldn't be considered mint in condition. But, I have noticed the digital songs I have downloaded from iTunes, to have a far superior sound to my album conversions. I don't have any snaps or pops from the lp song conversions, however, the sound doesn't appear to be as "full" as the digital downloads.
This might be the reason:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mulligan View Post
I just set up my ION iLP vinyl converter. This one converts to iTunes. It is a $65 purchase. ... Concerning the ION, if you are wanting high quality, find something else. This thing can not be made any cheaper and still work. You should get a look at the "needle". It is so cheap it fooled me, I didn't even think the needle was on it!. ...
At $65 for turntable, cartridge, tonearm, preamp and analog-to-digital converter, and make a profit, that must be some serious compromise!

My LP conversions sound fantastic. I'm not using anything exorbitant, just my old original 1970's era low-mid-end Pioneer belt drive turntable (had to get a new belt), with a good cartridge (I got a good deal on a Shure V15), and a ADC with built-in phono preamp that cost me ~ $80.

This is all fairly low-end stuff, nothing 'high-end' at all (except for the cartridge, which might have been fairly expensive, I can't recall, but I think very good cartridges can be had for ~ $80). But each stage of this system - turntable, cartridge, preamp/analog-to-digital converter was a bit more than the $65 you spent total. Yes, I think $65 would have been cutting corners in ways that would be clearly audible.

Going above what I invested would probably provide only marginal improvements, probably noticeable to only a few 'golden ears' under ideal conditions, but I would expect a very sharp improvement for the $ going from a $65 system to something ~3x the cost. At $65 you are pretty much at the hairy edge of getting something that barely functions - sound quality takes a very, very low priority in the marketing decision for something like that.

-ERD50
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Old 03-20-2014, 09:55 AM   #30
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rehashing this specifically:
Quote:
I don't have any snaps or pops from the lp song conversions, however, the sound doesn't appear to be as "full" as the digital downloads.
Hmmm, did you use some software to remove 'clicks and pops'? I've tried the freeware versions, and by the time I got the settings aggressive enough to clean up the music, it also sucked the life out of the music.

I go in with Audacity, and edit noticeable clicks/pops with their 'repair' tool, which is tedious - you need to find the tiny segment of noise, select it with a drag, and hit repair. It will only act on very short segments of sound, so it does not affect the surrounding music.

-ERD50
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Old 03-20-2014, 10:37 AM   #31
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Would any of you comment on just how useful you have found the conversion process? I converted a handful of LPs a couple of years back and found it easy enough to get good quality but the time commitment was immense. When I looked at the 800+ LPs I had, I decided it was just easier to keep my turntable and listen to the LPs when I wanted to hear them.

I've converted about 75% of my CD collection to mp3, but I've even begun to wonder about the ROI for that process. With 25 days worth of music in mp3 format, I'm not sure that there is much benefit to raising this total to 60 or so.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:05 AM   #32
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Would any of you comment on just how useful you have found the conversion process? I converted a handful of LPs a couple of years back and found it easy enough to get good quality but the time commitment was immense. When I looked at the 800+ LPs I had, I decided it was just easier to keep my turntable and listen to the LPs when I wanted to hear them.
I also find converting LPs to be extremely tedious and time consuming. I don't think I'll live long enough to convert 800 LPs! You've got to prep everything, check for levels, split and name the tracks, and then I go nuts editing the pops/clicks (once I get past the intro/outro, there isn't much to do - the music is generally louder than the pops). I'm only converting unique stuff that I can't find on CD.

I was leaning towards just listening on the turntable, I figure I'm not going to wear them out at this stage of my life. But it is the convenience/flexibility of having them in digital format that motivates me. I love just throwing them in a playlist, or picking/choosing with a few clicks. And I make a backup EZ.

Quote:
I've converted about 75% of my CD collection to mp3, but I've even begun to wonder about the ROI for that process. With 25 days worth of music in mp3 format, I'm not sure that there is much benefit to raising this total to 60 or so.
I convert to FLAC, an open-source lossless format (full bit-for-bit CD quality). Not only do I want the highest quality available to me, but that gives me the flexibility to create a compressed copy for a portable player, without going through two stages of compression, which multiplies artifacts. And I can make that compressed file to any q-level that I want for that occasion.

I'm not sure what you mean with the 25 days versus 60 days? Maybe that is the limit of your portable player? As I mention above, I convert to FLAC (1/2 the file size of CD, but no loss, it's like 'zipping' a file), and store those on a portable hard drive. An inexpensive 500GB drive ($60?) will store almost 2000 CDs in FLAC format.

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Old 03-20-2014, 11:24 AM   #33
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rehashing this specifically:





Hmmm, did you use some software to remove 'clicks and pops'? I've tried the freeware versions, and by the time I got the settings aggressive enough to clean up the music, it also sucked the life out of the music.



I go in with Audacity, and edit noticeable clicks/pops with their 'repair' tool, which is tedious - you need to find the tiny segment of noise, select it with a drag, and hit repair. It will only act on very short segments of sound, so it does not affect the surrounding music.



-ERD50

ERD, I didn't use any software. I just think the whole thing was so cheap it wasn't good enough to even pick up those sounds! I do have one more album I want to convert, but that is it. Like you mentioned it is just too time consuming. If I had to do it over, I would have bought a better converter, but at the time I didn't know what I was doing.


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Old 03-20-2014, 11:35 AM   #34
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In the most complete guide that I am aware of to Digital Music (The Ultimate Digital Music Guide: The Best Way To Store, Organize, and Play Digital Music) is a Chapter (Page 317) that goes into great detail on "Ripping Vinyl Discs and Analog Tapes to Digital." ("Detail" meaning equipment, formats, etc.)

However, the Author adds emphatically that:

Quote:
... The point is that if you're a vinyl collector, you probably have some titles in your collection that are not available today, and therefore worth your while to rip and add to your digital music library. It is not so much that digital is a replacement for vinyl but rather it lets you listen to your hidden gems along with the rest of your modern music tracks.

There is the additional question, of course, of whether there's value in digitizing vinyl albums that are also available on CD or available for digital download. If you're a die-hard vinyl devotee, you might think that the supposed warmth and fidelity of the vinyl release would trump the CD release, and thus justify ripping your vinyl to digital. But that's a fool's argument; if a commercial CD can't reproduce the warmth of the original, then neither can your homemade rip. ...
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:37 AM   #35
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My conversion strategy for LP's is to buy the mp3 version. I have the stuff to do a real conversion, if my turntable still works, but it does seem like a lot of time to set everything up and run through it real time.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:38 AM   #36
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... I'm only converting unique stuff that I can't find on CD.
... But it is the convenience/flexibility of having them in digital format that motivates me. I love just throwing them in a playlist, or picking/choosing with a few clicks. And I make a backup EZ.

I'm not sure what you mean with the 25 days versus 60 days? ...

-ERD50
These snippets are what I want to hear more about. First, the 25 days. I simply mean that if I press play on iTunes, it will be 25 days before my library starts playing again from the beginning. If my entire collection were digitized this would be a 60+ day interval. The currently digitized collection already gives me ample selection for shuffle and preparing playlists for special occasions (rarely).

Very few of my LPs are available on CD and I am not sure why the availability on CD is relevant. I'm not sure I see any advantage in having a particular item duplicated on LP and CD.

I think I get the playlist thing, but if I really want to LISTEN to a single piece, it is not likely that I'm going to place it in a playlist.

My collection is probably 90% classical, could this be part of the reason I struggle with understanding the advantages of digital? It's one thing to make a one hour playlist of 25 or so "songs". But if I'm going to listen for an hour, I'm looking at 1-5 works. It just seems much easier to pick out the LP and place it on the turntable than to create a playlist.

Not being argumentative, this is one of those areas where I really want to believe that there are advantages that I haven't identified, but I just haven't been able to see them.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:44 AM   #37
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I've only converted some stuff that hasn't been re-released on CD or mp3.
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Old 03-20-2014, 11:49 AM   #38
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Recognizing, of course, that MP3 (MPEG-1 Audio Layer III) is the least "true-to-original" format. Therefore it comes down to the Bitrate used to convert the original to a MP3 file:

Quote:
128Kbpb - Soft attacks, slightly compressed sound. Similar to normal FM radio but still sub-CD quality.

192Kbps - Sounds similar to the original, but with less presence and somewhat restricted dynamic range.

256Kbps - Quality is getting closer to that of the original, but still has a slightly compressed sound.

320Kbps - Approaching CD-quality, but not quite there. This is the highest bitrate possible with the current MP3 standard.
On the other hand, MPS does have the advantage of being the most universal -- very few playback devices cannot play a MP3 file.
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Old 03-20-2014, 12:00 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ERD50 View Post
rehashing this specifically:


Hmmm, did you use some software to remove 'clicks and pops'? I've tried the freeware versions, and by the time I got the settings aggressive enough to clean up the music, it also sucked the life out of the music.

I go in with Audacity, and edit noticeable clicks/pops with their 'repair' tool, which is tedious - you need to find the tiny segment of noise, select it with a drag, and hit repair. It will only act on very short segments of sound, so it does not affect the surrounding music.

-ERD50
Apologies for butting in, but to provide a counterpoint to this conversation, I am considering digitizing some of my vinyl collection. Most of the music I already have in digital form, but my reason for wanting to do this is actually because I was so intimately familiar with all the clicks and pops on my records that, for me, those sounds became an integral part of the way I experienced the recording. In other words, I'd like to be able to listen to my old record collection with all the surface noise, pops and clicks. If I want to hear it without the noise, I'll listen to it on CD.
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Old 03-20-2014, 12:04 PM   #40
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I also find converting LPs to be extremely tedious and time consuming. I don't think I'll live long enough to convert 800 LPs! You've got to prep everything, check for levels, split and name the tracks, and then I go nuts editing the pops/clicks (once I get past the intro/outro, there isn't much to do - the music is generally louder than the pops). I'm only converting unique stuff that I can't find on CD.


-ERD50
As I digitized my lp collection I decided to not break the tracks up but leave them as side 1 side 2 etc. This is how I at least listened to them in the past. Since mine are almost all classical, I kept the selections intact.
Since the turntable here had the tone arm stuck in the up postion, as the hydralic lifter froze there, I bought a Sony USB Turntable. You just plug it into the usb port on the windows 7 or greater machine, load audacity, and off you go. I did run the pops and clicks filter in audacity but since the lp experience included pops and clicks did not get agressive about it.
One has to also amplify the recording in audacity, as it comes off the turntable at about -18 db, and I raise it to -6. There were a few lps that the turntable got stuck on however.
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