How do vinyl records hold stereo sound? 

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23 Mar 2023



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Comentários : 2,6 mil   
My hearing is degrading and I usually have captions turned on (and hearing aids). I just about lost it with the captions on the Audacity playback! 🤣
Fun fact: I often accidently heard only the stereo difference: When the headphone jack is not plugged in all the way, and both channels have contact but not the ground, you hear only the differences between the audio channels. Happened a lot in the good old days with mp3 players
Vinyl record trivia: Monty Python (back in the day) cut an album that had two sides on one side: Each 'side' was cut in one spiral grove right next to another spiral grove. Depending on how you set the needle down, you'd get one track or the other. They had no mention of this on the album notes, just left it for you to figure out. Of course, each track was half the length of a regular album side. Crazy!
When you started discussing stereo difference channels using Audacity, it was very satisfying. I have a fun story about a radio station that did this by accident, causing me to make a curious detour on a job.
i've worked at a record store for 8 years now and the technology behind vinyl still blows my mind thank you for doing this
i’m a mix engineer and sometimes when I master digital recordings i re-introduce a bit of crosstalk to taste because sometimes it makes the imaging sound a bit more grounded! so much of digital recording involves re-introducing imperfections that you just kinda had to live w in analog. Like saturation, for example. love that you played the stereo difference signal of the outro music lmao. cheers
This technique is still a thing in digital recordings. In a "joint stereo" MP3 encoding, the sound is encoded as a mono channel and a stereo difference channel. The reason is that it compresses more efficiently and results in smaller files for the same quality.
I'd be super interested in hearing you cover quadraphonic records.
Your closed captions are just A++! Such a small detail that screams attention-to-detail! Love your content!
I never expected Alec to add papercraft to his list of tools to explain with but I am ALL for it!
Thelma Houston and Pressure Cooker was the first direct-to-disc record that was done without breaks. In other words, LIVE. The only break the band and singers got was the 30 seconds or so before the next song was supposed to start. Also, the break they took between sides of the LP. Well worth a listen!
Fun fact about the mono and “stereo difference” signals (better known as mid and side): There is a drum micing technique built around this principle! If you take a cardioid mic, and put a bi-directional mic right next to it, but pointed perpendicular from the sound source, you can get stereo drums that collapse perfectly to mono. Simply add the two signals together in one channel, then subtract the bi-directional signal from the cardioid in the other, and you have stereo drums!
Here I am, retired and in my 70s with a lifetime (well almost) in electronics and it never occurred to me to question how stereo sound works on a vinyl record. Thanks for the ‘training session’.
I was actually listening to a record when I realized this is how it worked! The snares on Todd Rundgren’s A Wizard A True Star are intentionally put out of phase, but panned hard left and right. Listening back to the cd, it sounds like normal out of phase, and in mono it disappears. But on the vinyl, it gets a really weird, unique spatial quality to it as the needle fights with that huge Side channel! I love weird Mid-Side tricks like that, and in other music where listening to it in mono will ‘erase’ certain vocal lines
I grew up with LPs during the 80s. By then, fine audio equipment was available at a reasonable price. Speakers with fifteen inch kickers were very popular. Listening to the left and right audio was an experience. Even to this day, stereo is one of the greatest inventions of all time. Very interesting video, I enjoyed it. Thanks!
Loving the inverted credit music haha! Phase cancellation is essentially what we’re listening to. The difference between the sounds that isn’t cancelled. Love the video!
As someone who is deaf in their left ear, this has actually made me interested in getting a mono stylus. I listen to almost everything in mono so that I don't miss anything, and it'd sure be convenient to only need one speaker, rather than two - especially if I have a smaller space to work with in the future. I have no idea whether it'd actually work the way you'd describe with modern records, but it'd be interesting to find out.
My favorite part was the stereo - difference outro. 😁 I love hearing things that you can't normally hear hidden in the stereo - difference channel.
A tip for anyone doing restoration of stereo audio off records. Because dust and crud sits in the bottom of the groove, it proportionally affects the stereo difference signal more than the mono signal. Convert from LR to MS then do your de-clicking etc. on each separately. Be careful not to use anything that might affect the phase relationship between the two signals. Then convert back to LR after processing.