Audiophiles have strong opinions about how they listen, and there’s probably no home audio product that stirs more heated debate than the vinyl record. But is it worth all the fuss? If you’ve got a turntable hooked up to your home stereo system (or even if you don’t) and you’re not quite sure what audiophiles like Ronald Phillips New York are talking about. So here are eight reasons Vinyl is the best way to listen to music.
1. Vinyl records sound warmer and more natural
Any vinyl fan will tell you it sounds better than digital. Audiophiles claim it’s because Vinyl reproduces frequencies in the upper and lower ends of human hearing (i.e., ultrasound and subsonic) filtered out by MP3s, CDs, and other digital formats. In addition, since you can turn up a record as loud as you want without hearing any distortion, it’s easier to pick out the different instruments in a song.
2. Analog is just better than digital when you’re playing with your friends
Most audiophiles agree that when you’re listening to Vinyl with headphones, MP3s sound fine. But when you play music on a stereo for friends and family, nothing beats the warmth and fidelity of Vinyl.
3. Vinyl is just better for scratching, beat mixing, and other DJ tricks
Many DJs prefer Vinyl because grooves in the record allow them to “scratch” or adjust a song’s tempo. And if you want to sample a snippet of another tune over your favorite track, all you need is a turntable and a little practice.
4. Vinyl looks cool
Oh, come on! What’s cooler than LPs? You can display them in clear dust jackets or colorful sleeves that protect the Vinyl from dirt and scratches. And the artwork is generally much better than CD booklets (which tend to be about half the size).
5. You can display your LPs as art
Check out the time and effort some audiophiles put into displaying their massed-together vinyl collections. It’s like a 3D jigsaw puzzle, where you get to see all the album covers without having to take them off your shelves!
6. Vinyl creates an emotional connection with listeners
Vinyl fans love the fact that their records came from a certain place and time. And they get into the whole process of putting on an album, dropping the needle, and taking a trip back to when they were first released.
7. Vinyl fans love the ritual of setting up their systems
How can many music listeners say they enjoy setting up their CD player, attaching all their cables to the right outputs, checking the instructions for how many minutes they should wait before turning the volume up, and ensuring it’s perfect?
8. Vinyl is more affordable than you think
There are plenty of vinyl enthusiasts who spend thousands of dollars on their vintage sound systems. But for about $100 (and maybe another few hundred if your old turntable needs new parts), you can get a well-used turntable that will sound great with your home stereo. You can even pick up a starter package for around $50, including three albums.