May 12, 2013

Confessions of a Vinyl Junkie

I think out of all the types of media that have came into existence and washed away with the times, vinyl records will still be around – maybe for hundreds of years to come.  There really are not other low fidelity types of media that can be played with very little effort.  If you take sewing needle and run it along the grooves of a record you will hear tiny bits of the music that is actually heard when it is placed on a turntable.  It’s actually pretty amazing stuff.  Even a cassette player, as simple as it seems, takes a lot of technology to turn magnetic sounds into audible ones.

The problem with other types of plastic you find on video tapes, cassette tapes, and even compact discs – is that is in fact very fragile.  CDs have very little toughness and virtually no strain characteristics meaning once it is cracked it is sure to break.  The actual data is stored on a thin layer of material as well.  On the other hand, it really takes some effort to break a vinyl record.  You can literally bend it and fling it in the air; only a deep scratch down the center will make it unusable.