The marked resurgence of vinyl culture has not only persisted, but spread beyond “dad-rock boomers” and the novelty inclinations of hipsters. It has woven its way into the mainstream and raked in a ton of cash for the vinyl industry along the way.
Dan Cook, owner and operator of Los Angeles’s Gimme Gimme Records for the past 26 years, told HuffPost why he thinks vinyl continues to stay relevant after so many years.
″The tactile and deliberate act of choosing something to listen to, along with playing and flipping the record, makes things more focused and involved,” Cook said.
Cook also cites the deep historical connection associated with records, and “the fun that comes with searching stores for the records you want and the ones you didn’t know you wanted. ”
Barry Perlman, the owner and operator of Supervinyl in Los Angeles, says listening to vinyl is the closest thing to a real life concert. “You can put on ‘Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band’ and listen to it all the way through, the exact way it was recorded and the exact way the musical artist wanted you to hear it,” Perlman said.
Whatever the case may be, the kind of record player you use is an integral piece of the listening experience when it comes to vinyl. Unlike the digital world of streaming, analog music and the mechanical workings of a turntable play off one another in magical ways to influence and create the sounds, tones, warmth and melodies that come out the other end.
A turntable’s cartridge, for instance, is the critical component responsible for transforming the grooves on a record into sound, and can make all the difference between a tinny, distant-sounding performance and one of complete high fidelity.
If you are looking for a way to immerse yourself in the sardonic sounds of The Smiths or rediscover the crooning lyrics of Roy Orbison’s ”Crying,” these record player recommendations may be just what you need to listen to your records the way the music gods intended.
A solid entry-level choice for those new to vinyl
A dynamically designed option that’s good for smaller spaces
An all around industry favorite that offers upgrades
A quality mid-level turntable for those wanting an even richer sound
An expert-level performance, even for the vinyl novice