Converting LP to digital format
I have a bunch of old music on LP format that I would like to convert over to digital format for listing on my portable devices. How would you suggest I do so.
Anonymous Facebook Fan
Hello Anonymous Facebook Fan,
I see you have some collectors items from the past that you would like to enjoy. Converting from LPs can be extremely difficult and time consuming. Before I begin to give you more information about how to convert from LP to digital format I will give you the pros and cons.
First, must I say that no matter how well this conversion is made, the quality will never be the same as that of an original professional CD or downloaded digital format. For example, noise levels are an issue. There are two kinds of noise which are produced during the conversion of a vinyl record into digital format. As we know the first kind of noise is the one produced by the vinyl record itself, such as cracklings caused by small scratches existing on the vinyl record’s surface. It is possible to erase this kind of noise by using the computer but can be very costly, tedious and complicated. The second kind of noise is the one caused by the equipment itself, called white noise. The white noise can come from many places: from the record player, from the amplifier (receiver), from the sound board, from the cables used in the connections, etc. Other than the noise itself, going from one format to the other can be very time consuming. Typically going from analog to digital formats require playback of the entire track and manually stopping/starting the process for every track.
Of course there are cases in which the conversion is an advantage. The most obvious is when the vinyl record you own is rare and has never been released on CD. Another case is the cost. In some cases it can be much cheaper to convert your entire LP collection into digital format than buying the whole collection again.
If you don’t want to spend various amounts of money on conversion kits on top of not knowing how the quality of music will end up, my recommendation would be to try and find the music online (in a online music store). There are many online music services that would allow you to purchase and download entire albums or individual tracks such as iTunes, Amazon MP3 and Rhapsody. There are also several music subscription services (free and paid) that allow you to listen/stream to unlimited amounts of music to your digital devices for a set monthly/year fee such as Spotify.
For any exclusive music that can’t be found or downloaded online (or if you are against downloading music online for any reason) there are various LP conversion kits sold in electronic stores. For example, Best Buy has a LP Turntable Conversion Kit (Ion Audio) that’s could be worth giving a try.