The Best Ever Kind of Blue?

Is it possible to now write anything that hasn’t already been written or said about this record? I haven’t any fresh insights to offer that might advance what you probably already know. A good Kind of Blue pressing puts you in the 30th Street studio to hear the performance. Ashley Kahn’s “Kind of Blue” book sets the pre-recording stage, offering both musical and technical details and puts you as much in the control room as in front of the band.

According to Kahn, engineer Fred Plaut “…favored the new Telefunken U-49 microphones, a workhorse of the recording industry. Their warm, rounded response especially in the mid to lower range of the dynamic spectrum made them a favorite for jazz and other acoustic music sessions.” (I think Kahn meant of the frequency not the dynamic spectrum).

Each instrument was single-mic’d, except for Jimmy Cobb’s drum kit, which got two (one aimed at the snare, the other at the cymbals), for a total of 7.

In addition to the 30th Street studio’s natural reverberation, a low ceilinged concrete basement room about 12 feet by 15 feet fitted with a loudspeaker and omnidirectional microphone served as a reverb chamber. The session sound played through the speaker and picked up by the microphone was fed to the center channel, which was also bassist Paul Chambers’ placement in the mix. That might explain the odd bass decay after one of Chambers’ plucks at the beginning of “So What”. Of course, even without the reverb chamber, there’s major microphone leakage, which produces this recording’s remarkable three-dimensionality as well as image solidity.

Do you also know that record presses sound different much as do cutting systems, cartridges, turntables, phono preamps and everything else in the analog recording, cutting and playback chain?

SMT, Lened, Toolex Alpha, Finebilt hand presses and others have not too difficult to discern sonic characteristics. So I have to laugh when I read comments like “if you have a Classic Records pressing of Kind of Blue “you are all set”.

Trust me, you are not “all set”, unless to you this record is of minor importance or you don’t care to own what is clearly and easily the best sounding Kind of Blue.

I compared this Finebilt, UHQR “flat profile” pressing sourced from metal parts made from Bernie Grundman’s 1997 lacquer cut (this record features the speed corrected version of side 1), produced from the original 3 track tape mixed “live” to two tracks to: two original Columbia “6-Eye” pressings, to Classic’s 33 !/3 double LP 180 gram side one speed corrected set, to the 45rpm single sided set and to Mobile Fidelity’s double 45rpm set sourced not from a “live 3:2 mix” but from Mark Wilder’s 3:2 tape dub.

Why mince words or meat for the that matter, a “live 3:2 mix” cut directly from the 3 track master has to sound more immediate and transparent than one cut from at least a generation down 2 track mixdown tape and even though the Mo-Fi was cut at 45rpm, the UHQR is far more transparent. Just compare Wynton Kelly’s piano solo on “Freddie Freeloader”. The Classic Records reissue was the first and only time the lacquers were cut “live” using the 3-Track master tape—and that includes the original pressing, which also was cut from a mixdown tape.

The “flat profile” record is not a gimmick. If you’ve seen the cross section of a standard LP, the stylus goes slightly “downhill” over the first half of the record and then “uphill” to the end. The flat profile eliminates the valley”. That matters. Not in a profound way, but consider that this is all happening in a microscopic miniature world where every variation from ideal produces some negative and often sonic effect.

The original pressing is of course the “document of record” (pun intended). It has a romantic transient blur to it that’s ear-pleasing but clearly not what’s on the tape. Add the era’s relatively noisy vinyl (even when it’s “quiet” as you’ll hear, compared to the Clarity vinyl, which is really quiet).

The two Classic Records reissues sound closest to the new UHQR and to suggest that the UHQR is a “must have” if you have either of those or the Quiex 200g version would be hyperbolic so I’m not going to suggest that, but were you to buy the UHQR and your turntable is sufficiently resolving, precise and quiet, the difference between the Classic and QRP UHQR is significant, almost like putting on 3D glasses or focusing an out of focus pair of binoculars—never mind the focus difference between the UHQR and the original pressing.

Part of this is no doubt the vinyl formulation but more of it I think is the Finebilt handpress, which has a longer press time and which has had the chassis shaking hydraulics removed and placed on its own isolated platform. Especially if this record is seared into your brain from decades of exposure, you’ll immediately hear the improved focus, which does not come at the expense of the recording’s famous lush, rich and full warm instrumental sound and it’s upper frequency transient precision and clarity in front of the somewhat wet space.

Add to that the deluxe UHQR box, the Stoughton laminated “tip-on” gatefold jacket and a nicely presented nearly full sized booklet that includes session photographs you won’t want to not look at and the original 1997 Robert Palmer (the music critic and one time “Insect Trust” band member) essay as well as a new one from Ashley Kahn. Enough said!

That’s the end of the review. Now here’s the capsulized “audiophile press” review:
"Quite clearly and obviously this new UHQR Kind of Blue sourced from Bernie Grundman’s 1995 “live” mix from the 3 track master, directly to lacquer sounds best compared to two early “6-Eyes”, Classic’s own double 180g set and that label's single-sided 45rpm set, and Mobile Fidelity’s double 45 boxed edition, to which I compared the UHQR.

“Even the quietest original pressing creates a pleasing romantic blur over a soft bed of noise but compared to this issue the overall picture is distant and hazy (though the romanticized version still pulls). The UHQR offers the blackest, quietest backgrounds and unparalleled transparency, but more critically, the modified Finebuilt hand press produces unprecedented transient precision and instrumental focus and resolves low level details that will deliver surprises to even the most blasé KOB veteran, one of whom visited and exclaimed “I’ve never heard that before”. This pressing allows you to see further into the mix and transports you back in time and into the 30th Street studios. I don’t care what version you now have you’ve never heard Kind of Blue quite like this. And that’s not hyperbole!" OK it is hyperbole but hey! The thing is and add your own tired cliché here:

COMMENTS
Analog Scott's picture

when it comes to applying science. As for working with high vibration environments with precision molds one of the things I do in my work is sculpt, mold and cast custom cosmetic teeth. My training in that particular aspect of my work has all been derived from dental labs and their R&D in the field. It's fairly precise. As for the vibrational environment....well, this is the field from which we learned the *advantages* of vibration in getting viscous fluids to properly cover surfaces when making molds and making casts from molds. The vibration aggitates the material causing air bubbles to leave. It also helps break surface tention removing air gaps from between the two materials in any moldmaking or casting process. The *only* issue one has to be careful about with vibrations is with particular rigid materials that go through a chemical reaction to set up. Vibrations present can in extreme cases cause micro cracking and compromise the strength of the cast. Some materials do require a period where they are best not disturbed while curing. Vinyl is not one of them. Pretty much all materials need to be allowed to sit long enough to fully set up before demolding to avoid distortion while the material is still maliable. as for vibration control for vinyl playback...yeah it's a big deal. But it's a completely different situation. pressing a record and playing a record are completely different.

Glotz's picture

There is no community. Only manufacturers that make equipment. Which ones have a bad reputation? You claim the audio community is bullshit, but it's really people like you that claim with no proof... Again a lack of truth.

They are websites for people to pretend they challenge audio companies and magazines... largely full of shit opinions and butt hurt children who masquerade as adults.

Teeth and microscopically small record grooves are very different.

You claim vinyl is not.. at what temp?? You don't know.

Pressing vinyl and playing vinyl are VERY similar..

Oh, the cutter only matters... yeah vibration is not good there, but okay on with the press.. BULLSHIT.

You ASSUME it's not important.

Analog Scott's picture

Really? How so? Do explain the mechanical similarities. This should be a hoot.

Glotz's picture

And all of the stories you've told about Clarity vinyl discussions with industry heads is all lies as well.

You suck dude.

Analog Scott's picture

The facts don't fit your beliefs so you reject them.

Jeffrey Lee's picture

You may be a freakin genius but I avoid your gray blocks of text like it was a plague.

Rayman's picture

Lets press vinyl on a hot Beijing street in the summertime then

Analog Scott's picture

It's not what I actually said though is it? But if you think I am just getting the physics wrong about this once again I will ask for an explination as to how vibrations are changing the form of a record when it is pressed and demolded? How is the deformation happening? Where is the vinyl moving from and moving to?

Mark Wilidng's picture

When people believe they have reached an indisputable conclusion about an observion, it is natural to become intolerant and angry toward those who continue to dispute it. It's not entirely a bad thing, it shows passion for the truth. When we are searching for perfection in an imperfect world (or in other words, we are audiophiles or some other breed of fanatic), things become murky the closer we get to it. Nuance becomes everything. A while back, it was concluded that we live in a Newtonian universe, then Einstein came along and pointed out that at the extreme edges of physical reality, there were aberrations that Newton could not describe. It did not make Newton wrong for the most part, it just meant there was more complexity than we had previously conceived. As someone who has a physics degree and taught in a typical university demonstration lab, I am always concerned when I hear people say that science 'proves' anything. At best, we are trying to improve our understanding of the reality we live in (and not always going in the right direction - in fact, usually not!) As we reach the limits of what information can be coded into an arrangement of PVC molecules, we have to remain aware of the limitations of our equipment and perception. in this example, it is quite plausible that energy dissipated in the form of waves induced by mechanical vibration, is captured as the vinyl changes state, increasing viscosity as it cools (like Frozone icing that cop)... So do I think you are wrong? If you are wrong, do I think there is a discernible difference. I would say I don't know, but it's good to know when you don't know.

Analog Scott's picture

"it is quite plausible that energy dissipated in the form of waves induced by mechanical vibration, is captured as the vinyl changes state, increasing viscosity as it cools (like Frozone icing that cop)..."

I would say it may appear quite plausable if one does not look too deep into the mechanics of what is actually happening with a pressed record. And as such my question stands. For this to make an audible difference there would have to be a physical deformation of the record's surface caused by the vibrations. So that would mean physical seperation from the stamper at some point during the pressing and/or cool down. For that seperation to happen there has to be displacement of the vinyl in the mold. We have the big issue of where does the displaced vinyl go in a sealed mold? Let's really consider the mechanics of this. To say it is plausable I think one has to be able to offer a mechanical explination that considers all of the known facts. It is a known fact that displaced vinyl has to go somewhere and the mold is sealed. Where does the displaced vinyl go?

"So do I think you are wrong? If you are wrong, do I think there is a discernible difference. I would say I don't know, but it's good to know when you don't know."

I suspect most people don't know due to a lack of familiarity with such processes. And as someone who works extensively with making molds and casting pieces out of molds a lot of this is second nature to me. And as such this claim jumped out at me and screamed B.S. Of course it is quite possible that I am missing something. So far no one arguing against my assertion has come up with something I have actually missed. And the other side of this seems to get nothing but a free pass. And let's look again at that other side. Have you considered the possibility that Chad and Fremer are wrong given the data they are using to make the assertion that the reduction in vibration is making an audible difference? Clearly Fremer is using an older Classics pressing with a different profile and different vinyl formulation and doing slow switching non bias controlled comparisons. Do you not see any "plausable" problems with his conclusion that the new version not only sounds better but in part because of the vibration control used on the pressing machine?

shawnwes's picture

...with their theories before they've even experienced the end result. And for some reason it's usually the engineering types. Might as well have been a cable thread.

Michael, thanks for providing your take on it although I had committed to 3 copies even before the video with Michael & Bernie. The most I've ever spent on a single lp, I'm ok with the $25-35 range but $100 is usually a $35 pressing with alot of fluff. This one is different & had a hunch Chad wouldn't have pressed it if it wasn't going to be the best sounding reissue to date. Mine should ship on the 21st as was able to get mine in a couple hours after they opened for sales.

When's the 33.33 rpm Evans box set coming out? :)

Mark Wilidng's picture

haha. what I was thinking... everyone has a physics degree when they are trying to win an argument on the internet. I never pull that one (and I actually have a physics degree)

arcman67's picture

Coming from manufacturing, we always went out of our way to control vibration. If you did not, the plates, stampers, dyes, whatever could have consistency issues from piece to piece along with alignment issues. In a process like record manufacturing, having consistent "centering" is critical. Every deviation could have an impact on the sonic characteristics.

Analog Scott's picture

but one that is not going to be affected by vibrations. Off center pressings are common and the net effect is wow. There were plenty of adequately centered records that have no audible wow prior to the creation of these new pressing machines. You mention "consistancy " issues. what would be inconsistant in pressing a record due to vibrations?

Glotz's picture

Excellent reasoning.

skronksonic's picture

Although I feel intimately familiar with the music -- this was the album that lured me into the high end, after I heard it on a vinyl maniac's Maggies+Tubes system, 30+ years ago -- I never owned a copy on LP (just a Columbia/Sony Legacy CD reissue, that I no longer have). Throwing down $100 for the AP version seemed like a no-brainer. Glad I waited for this version.

Analog Scott's picture

It's still available for preorder.

xtcfan80's picture

A Scott...If vibration isolation didn't improve the manual LP pressing process do you think Chad and company would have spent the $$$?? Think about it.

Leonthepro's picture

they are still gimmicks though. Considering that Im not hearing distortions by way of a non flat profile causing continuous distortions through variations in the Azimuth and Anti Skate, I dont think these things matter much. Although they probably dont hurt either.
Im still looking forward to the 45RPM, hopefully its up for sale before 2021 is over.

Jack Gilvey's picture

but just checked and I actually have the CS 8163 (CS 8163-C BG runout) Classic. I don't recall buying that at all. Weird. I think I picked it up at a place on Rt 46 in Totowa which is now a dry-cleaner. Still, happy to have this on pre-order!
And "good eye!" to the guy who spotted the 45RPM labels in the video. I see it too. I'm more of a 33 guy these days, though, that's the limit of my system and ears. Plus, I like to sit.

isaacrivera's picture

To read a bunch of self-secure and categorical opinions on effects they admit having no first-hand experience of. Here is a well-respected journalist with a highly resolving system reporting sonic differences due to X and Y changes in the manufacturing process and somehow people already know, without comparing themselves that this is not possible! LOL! They also somehow have to capacity for knowing what they are not hearing! How would you know it does not make a difference by theory? How would you know you do not hear distortion? You can't, it's a shadow, it is invisible to you and you can only even realize how it sounds until you can compare to how it does not sound. You can't possibly know if vibration does not make a difference until you can compare with and without on a systems setup so that its resolution threshold is below the difference. You can't know if you are hearing distortion due to vinyl profile flatness until you can compare to a flat profile, simply because you can't possibly discern what you consider music sound from distortion by way of how you have trained your ear on distorted reproduction to begin with. Think of the scores of audiophiles who prefer some forms of distortion introduced by speaker cabinets or tubes and go to great lengths to exaggerate these on their rooms! I am not judging, everyone should listen to music how they like it. I am just saying knowing before experiencing on a perceptual activity is a delusion. It may very well be you dislike the difference or your system can't discern it as it is currently set up. That does not lead to the generalization that it is somehow suspicious or untrue. Your knowledge may lead you to make generalizations about things you have yet to experience, but these are only hypotheses to be tested, not proven truths.

Analog Scott's picture

to know you bleed. "To read a bunch of self-secure and categorical opinions on effects they admit having no first-hand experience of." One does not always need first hand experience to know something about it. If you told me you can run faster than a speeding bullet like superman I am confident that you can't, even without going to the track and timing you. "Here is a well-respected journalist with a highly resolving system reporting sonic differences due to X and Y changes in the manufacturing process and somehow people already know, without comparing themselves that this is not possible! LOL!" As my brother said, you don't have to cut yourself to know you bleed. I actually don't have to listen to the results to know the process will not make an audible change. I know enough about casting and mold making to know that vibrations are not going to change the shape of the surface of the record. It's physics. When personal anecdotes run contrary to physics you don't have to try it yourself to know. Personal experience is simply far far less reliable than established laws of physics. When the two are in conflict it is safe to assume the anecdote is wrong and the physics are not on the verge of being tossed out. "They also somehow have to capacity for knowing what they are not hearing!" Yes, again, we are talking about the hearing acuity of human beings. We actually do know a thing or two about human hearing thresholds. It's kind of like the speeding bullet example. "How would you know it does not make a difference by theory? How would you know you do not hear distortion?" by knowing the thresholds of the audibility of various distortions and knowing the levels of actual distortion that one is claiming to hear. None of which is a matter of "theory." "You can't, it's a shadow, it is invisible to you and you can only even realize how it sounds until you can compare to how it does not sound." No, you can, it's not a shadow or some mysterious force. It's sound waves. We know about them. "You can't possibly know if vibration does not make a difference until you can compare with and without on a systems setup so that its resolution threshold is below the difference." Actually you can. as already explained. "I am just saying knowing before experiencing on a perceptual activity is a delusion." Yes that is what you are saying and it is simply incorrect. It's like saying you don't really know China exists until you visit it in person. We actually do have th ability to deduct what is and what is not real to a highly reliable degree without relying on personal anecdotal evidence. And in fact such evidence is far and away the weakest most unreliable form of evidence. So much so that it is considered junk in the world of science. "It may very well be you dislike the difference or your system can't discern it as it is currently set up. That does not lead to the generalization that it is somehow suspicious or untrue." Tht isn't how I reached my conclusions. It's based on an understanding of casting and mold making and the physics involved and how physical distortions happen and DONT happen in those processes. "Your knowledge may lead you to make generalizations about things you have yet to experience, but these are only hypotheses to be tested, not proven truths." No more so than the generalization that neither you nor anyone else is faster than a speeding bullet.

isaacrivera's picture

Is a reductionist assumption and not in disagreement with my statement, I am saving myself the trouble of reading the rest of the verbiage. Good logic with wrong assumptions leads to incorrect results. You do not have to cut yourself to know you would bleed BECAUSE THERE IS PRIOR EXPERIENCE THAT MODELED THE RESULT. Either you cut yourself before or saw someone do so. A child with no such prior experience in fact has to be saved from cutting itself by adults WITH the experience continuously. The example does not apply at all. We are talking the introduction of NEW variable controls in the process and you can't possibly know what the result is. You can hypothesize, but that is just that until corroborated by experience. That is just basic scientific method. Same is same, different is not same. Those who are having the experience confirm, your hypothesis is outnumbered so far. Like Karl Popper said, it only takes one instance of negation to cancel a whole theory.

Analog Scott's picture

the rest let's examine the so called "wrong assumptions." You state that "We are talking the introduction of NEW variable controls in the process and you can't possibly know what the result is." This is not new at all. The physics involved in casting and molding is not new. In point of fact vibration is often actually added to the process of filling molds because it helps break surface tension. Now if there is some aspect of physics that I am forgetting that would cause a completely filled mold to somehow distort on the surface after the fill had properly cooled please please please let us know about it. You see, this is very much like cutting yourself. Those with a working knowledge of molding and casting are very familiar with how it works. Particularly with these kinds of materials that are semi-rigid melted plastics. It's not "new." Sooooo are there any other wrong assumptions you think you see in my position? Perhaps ones that actually are assumptions and are actually wrong? What I am saying about the effects and NON effects of vibrations on casting parts out of molds are NOT assumptions. The technology of making and filling molds and the physics upon which that technology is based IS NOT NEW. *IF* the mold fills in the case of a vinyl record that's that. The shape is not going to change because of the presence of vibrations. It would quite literally have to somehow *unfill* after it filled and do so with no escape path for the vinyl to get out. We are not talking about casting a rigid material that has to go through a chemical process to set up. The only thing that is going to affect the shape of the surface of a record is if it filled to begin with and if it was allowed to cool long enough that the demolding does not distort it. This is not a theory by the way, again it's very well established basic physics upon which the principles of mold making and casting are built upon. Are there any other "wrong assumptions" you care to point out? Ones that are actually wrong assumptions this time?

Glotz's picture

When pressing, when playing, when whatever...

You need to use paragraphs and modern, internet formatting for people to read your large run-on sentence of writing.

The actual physical time for hand pressing MEANS more cool down which again makes your point moot. Many of the worst pressing with warps and other just prove that not enough cool down time was given.

Here on KOB they account for that and provide that time to cool.

PS- You act like you're personally attacked. Your responses are repugnant to people.

Analog Scott's picture

It's a choice. There is no hi tech wizardry needed to keep a mold closed long enough for the disc to cool down enough to remove.

"In the groove there are vibrational effects" OK do explain the actual mechanics as to how vibrations present in a mold that is actually filled translates into changing the shape of the record. Right now you are just waving a generic "vibrations are bad" flag. How do vibrations affect the actual record when it is pressed?

Glotz's picture

It's not about the machine but the longer process. You've decided to defocus on that critical point. All of the other points I brought up above in this comment section, you completely ignored.

Gee, I thought you were going to explain that you already knew that vibration has no effect on it.. NO, that's just YOUR guess.

Rather the answer is when it cools. You assume by theory it must be filled so therefore it is. Wrong! As it cools, it hardens and slows from a semi-liquid. HERE is the point where massive vibrations affect the 'correct' form and not a 10nm difference, for instance. Cause guess what?? Any deep profile stylus can register movement that small. It does it in the groove every time it plays a disc.

Random movement from vibration will not provide the accuracy in the groove for a stylus to properly trace.

I wonder wear the term 'bad pressing' comes from... one that skips, has inner groove distortion, etc. Here probably.

Whatever, you've made up your mind before opening it.

Analog Scott's picture

"It's not about the machine but the longer process." No...it is about the machine and the vibration isolation and ONLY about that. THAT was the one and only thing claimed in the review that I took issue with.

"Gee, I thought you were going to explain that you already knew that vibration has no effect on it.. NO, that's just YOUR guess."

It's not a guess.

"Rather the answer is when it cools. You assume by theory it must be filled so therefore it is. Wrong!"

Let's be clear, if the mold isn't filled **THAT'S** THEEEE problem.And it's a problem that has no connection to the presence of vibrations during the pressing. Again, if vibrations present during the casting of any viscous liquid has any effect the effect is BETTER fill.

"As it cools, it hardens and slows from a semi-liquid. HERE is the point where massive vibrations affect the 'correct' form and not a 10nm difference, for instance. Cause guess what?? Any deep profile stylus can register movement that small. It does it in the groove every time it plays a disc."

Again, if the mold is not filled **THAT** is the problem. and **IF** vibrations present are causing the melted vinyl to move then you will get better fill on the bottom plate and a mess on the top plate. But it isn't. The vinyl simply isn't that fluid. If it were then records would not be pressed, they would be injected.

"Random movement from vibration will not provide the accuracy in the groove for a stylus to properly trace."

There is no stylus involved in pressing a record. The thing I suspect you are not grasping is the basic mechanics of the plate/disc interface. It's not free to move around. The mold (the two plates) are filled. That is not an issue. The issue is getting the vinyl to completely sit in the plates when the plates come down a squeeze the disc. Once it's there then there is no place for the vinyl to move to. It is a solid fill and the material is too viscous to have any post pressing flow. There is nothing vibrations can do to that at that point. If there were room for movement that would mean there was a lack of fill in the pressing to begin with and that would be a huge problem. It would be THE problem.

"I wonder wear the term 'bad pressing' comes from... one that skips, has inner groove distortion, etc. Here probably."

You wonder? You don't know what makes a bad pressing a bad pressing?

"Whatever, you've made up your mind before opening it."

Have you made up your mind about gravity? If I were to say it doesn't always work would you believe me or have you already made up your mind? You do realize that there are some things in this world that we pretty much know about right?

Glotz's picture

You assume that vibrations in the cooling process (during press) have no effect. You assume that the proper, full fill is the only part that matters.

You are vibrating the very mold in that process and the compound is being jostled as cooled. Those molds will not rest right unless vibration is removed.

Vibrations will mean less accuracy and in this field, it makes a huge difference.

And you have no knowledge about that process. Work in that field making vinyl, then come tell us.

Glotz's picture

is really you in here in this otherwise great website.

For such a smart guy, you are a dumbass when it comes to grammar and communicating with broken logic to fit your viewpoint.

Leonthepro's picture

yourself.

Glotz's picture

I'm not lying to promote a viewpoint. I don't do so venomously, but I do note that yourself and Scott are rather just trying to dissent for the sake of dissent.

His expertise is not in vinyl formulations, though he would rather have you believe that.

Moreover, it also invalidates your complaints too.

If you don't have a system that is resolving enough, don't claim people are being elitist.

I have invested in my expertise over decades, with scores of components and countless hours critically listening.

If you don't have the same, just sit back and learn, rather pretending that you or Scott have any expertise.

Analog Scott's picture

Yep, classic case of toxic fandom. If you need an explination as to what that is feel free to ask.

Glotz's picture

Sure. You're butt hurt now... Awww... so sad.

You should really leave if you have a problem with it.

Analog Scott's picture

"You assume that vibrations in the cooling process (during press) have no effect."

Nope, that is not an assumption.

" You assume that the proper, full fill is the only part that matters."

Not only do I NOT assume that I clearly said otherwise. In the case of a melted semi-rigid material there are two issues. The fill and the demolding.

"You are vibrating the very mold in that process and the compound is being jostled as cooled. Those molds will not rest right unless vibration is removed."

Please do tell us how the vibrations affect the physical form of the record as it cools in the mold.

"Vibrations will mean less accuracy and in this field, it makes a huge difference."

How will the vibrations distort the form of the record during the pressing and cool down period? Please explain what is physically happening. I'm telling you straight up it is not for a very very very simple reason, the disc is far to viscous for any physical displacement and there literally is no place for the vinyl to go for any physical distortion of the form to happen. There is no curing so there is no disruption of that from vibrations. It is not a rigid enough material for their to be structural damage. So do tell. What is actually physically happening when records are physically being distorted by vibrations in the mold during pressing or cooling?

Leonthepro's picture

I never claimed that I knew anything for certain though. Im just saying that, from what I know and have heard myself, I dont see them making a huge difference. It is equally wrong to suggest that they do in fact make a difference if we dont have fair comparisons however. Im simply saying Im skeptical and that I can be convinced, but not until I have some justification for the claims.
A lot of people like to assume everything matters or changes the sound audibly, I dont think thats true.

isaacrivera's picture

Nothing is on its own, everything is the result of causes and conditions and defined and experienced by reference to everything else. As such everything does matter and has an effect. Whether the effect is perceivable or its pursuit feasible, financially realistic and mentally sound is a different proposition. However, we are not talking about theoretical improvements if those who are in the pursuit of such finer qualities can actually be excited about what the differences they notice. It may not justify most people getting a 5th KOB edition, but many who love the album or are getting it for the first time may consider these differences when sourcing a copy, if they can afford them. I honestly believe Chad and co pursue these improvements out of personal passion. However they are also financially smart. I do not believe for a second Chad would invest in the improved presses if he did not believe the improved result justified the investment. He could have also found marketing pitch ways to print and sell the edition without the investment, if business was his only motivation. I only have the Sony Mono AAA reissue with is really good and I ordered this and look forward to compare it to friend's copies. Either way this will be a good purchase for me.

Leonthepro's picture

Which is why I specified audible differences. Maybe you can measure it in some way, but I only care about if people can hear it, not even everyone, but just some who can confirm that it does exists, thats all Id really need to believe it.
Im sure Chad does believe it makes a difference too, just as Hobbson does. I myself am looking forward to the 45 as I only want one of the two. Treasure that Sony Mono too by the way, its very good and a great companion piece to have along with a good Stereo copy.

Analog Scott's picture

I don't doubt Chad believes it makes a difference. Belief does not equate actual physical reality. Humans, all humans beleive a lot of shit that simply isn't true. Even very smart and very successful people. Also even if he is wrong about the vibrations affecting the casting of the records it doesn't mean he isn't making an excellent product.

Leonthepro's picture

indeed.

isaacrivera's picture

Chad would not put down $$$$ on non vibrating presses if he had not tested prior and noticed substantial differences, leading him to "believe" in a superior product to bring to market. He is a shrewd business man driven by passing AND testing. I guess you did not watch the video discussion. We are not talking religion, but real world businesses and products that are booming in part due to unprecedented innovation. Again, this is clearly proven science to those making and reviewing the products. The suggestion was that YOU can't know unless you test regardless of your beliefs, which are not based on experience at this point, therefore just hypotheses.

Leonthepro's picture

that it would be impressive of them to share their findings if they had any that confirmed what a difference its suggested to make. Is there anything to lose by doing this perhaps? The old MFSL UHQRs were happy to share some diagrams of the reduced noise floor I recall, now thats measurements and not listening tests but still.
If they do have such excellent evidence, enough to make them confident in spending thousands on upgrades, Id love to see it.
Until then, its just another claim. You can liken it to how some spend 6 digits on any part of their HiFi system, tables, amps, even cables, because they think theres an audible difference. At least, in those areas we have some decent pre studies that dont show any positive results. People still buy it though.

isaacrivera's picture

I said it was proven science TO THEM! They said they have done tests and they said they find it better. I do not know or claim to know what tests they did or how they measured the results. However you are very wrong. We do not need any published papers to experience and decide for ourselves. My point was, whatever tests they have done, it convinced THEM to invest in the equipment. Others confirm it is the best they have heard. I will try it and decide if it is better to my ears.

Leonthepro's picture

but I cant really do anything with that. Proven science is always able to be shared, otherwise its not very meaningful. Just as some test new cables or what have you and decide they are better, its just claims to me.
Again, I dont see a reason why they couldnt share it if it convinced them so thoroughly.

Analog Scott's picture

and also pointed out that their conviction does not equate objective fact. You waved the science flag. You just got called out on it. And no, you don't need science to have a personal opinion. We can see this from climate change deniers and flat earthers. But if you are going to wave the science flag best be prepared to show us the actual science.

jazz's picture

of all pressing, vinyl formula, record profile or weight related innovations was the one step process…by far.

Analog Scott's picture

can you describe the tests in detail? Is there an actual study here that we can read for ourselves or is this some vague reference to an off hand comment he made? I did watch the video. I witnessed a couple tons of bullshit being passed off as objective fact. Now that doesn't make any of the people bad at what they do. People can do their work brilliantly while fully believing in utter bullshit.

You say it's "proven science?" That_is_bullshit. If it is proven science please show me the actual science. Proven science is well documented in peer reviewed research. Please cite it.

isaacrivera's picture

It's a convention that has itself never been studied and there is no evidence it provides for better science. Much has been written about its failures too. But that is off topic.

Coming back to the subject, In your usual combative form you are quoting me out of context. I said "Again, this is clearly proven science TO THOSE MAKING AND REVIEWING THE PRODUCTS." Caps added for clarity.

Analog Scott's picture

science is not something that is personalized.They don't have their own personal science that just works for them. You are simply using the classic logical fallacy of moving goal posts.

isaacrivera's picture

You assume too much about the status quo as the final, fixed and absolute state of knowledge. Scientific thinking requires openness, curiosity and detachment. You are too defensive of what you think you know and too dismissive of potentially disruptive new knowledge. And you try to use what you believe about science to bulldoze arguments that may challenge your implicit biases. All of that is antagonistic to science.

Peer review is a flawed process, this is not my original claim, it has been around for a long time and brought up periodically by scientists and researchers. And, as far as I can see, there is no scientific validation of the peer review process. It is a convention and one full of wishful assumptions at that. You can call this ridiculous, which is, btw, a belief and a common strategy of those cornered--attack the seriousness because you can't defend your point... I invite you to bring up data that proves otherwise. I am not saying it is not useful, just that it is not all that is purported to be, specially when used as an argument to prevent new knowledge to be incorporated into existing concepts.

For consideration:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1420798/

https://www.nytimes.com/2018/11/05/upshot/peer-review-the-worst-way-to-j...

https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/21507740.2017.1392374

I know you will find incontrovertible disqualifications for everything. Go ahead, I do not take your arguments very seriously. The point is, peer review has serious flaws and is questioned. Industries have collective biases and interests and conficts. Scientists and their conventions are not science, they are humans and habits.

Btw, while we are at it, let me propose a few of ideas that may blow your head--Just kidding, you are pretty set, you already know, but for fun...

1) Science is a PHILOSOPHY of how to best acquire and build knowledge about the universe.
2) Humans are subjective beings, and therefore, the practice of the philosophy of science is a pursuit of approximation to an ideal and as such, an ART.
3) In the practice of science there are FUNDAMENTAL assumptions about the nature of reality. Those assumptions are not scientific, have not been validated and likely will never be. To bring just one up, the notion that the universe and reality are objective and measurable in nature to begin with.
4) Most of what we think of as factual science, is just hypotheses.
5) Hypotheses have a half-life--much knowledge we take for granted today as factual, will not be regarded as such in 10 years.
6) Engineering is not science and engineers are not scientists, much as we like to use the terms interchangeably.

These are enough for a few pages of rabid response. If you'd give me a few minutes, I am making popcorn.

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