The Vinyl Appreciation Thread

There has been a few vinyl-related posts and questions scattered across the Forumosa time-space, but perhaps we have enough vinyl appreciators to sustain our own little thread to discuss and share knowledge. Don’t need to be an audiophile to join in on the shinanigans; I definitely am not a high-end hi-fi guy.

Some example ideas for posting this thread:

  • Home audio setups
  • Record collections
  • New purchases
  • Currently-listening-to updates (vinyl only)
  • Cool finds from digs and in stores, especially within Taiwan
  • Information and experiences on retail/online stores
  • General news and information on album releases and gear.
  • Any questions on any of the above

About me: I used to have a small second hand/hand-me-down collection back home with a super basic hifi+headphone setup (both vinyl and CD), but sold/gave away all my physical mediums and switched to digital prior to moving here. Between KKBOX/Spotify/podcasts/YouTube, I have all my personal music requirements covered, but for those Sundays at home, I do miss holding something tangible in my hands, browsing album covers and performing the ritual before popping down on the sofa. So I’m back and am aiming to build a small vinyl (no CDs this time) collection that’s aurally and visually a bit more special. My taste is quite broad but based on other threads, it may be quite different to the average Forumosan :laughing:. I do have a thing for coloured vinyl though, so pretty :heart_eyes:.

Anyhow, I’d love to see your gear and collection, hear about digs and general Taiwan record store experiences.


P.S. Would be awesome if I could tag along with those of you with more local knowledge the next time you go on digs and browsing excursions! That’s one area I have no expertise in here in Taipei.

P.P.S. Here’s a little something I put together while mucking around with DaVinci Resolve 14, uploaded a few days ago. The album came with my turntable and is from Timeless Fusion Party, a local Taiwanese jazz ensemble. I figured if I uploaded something more popular YouTube will DMCA it straight away. And yes, the plate wobble has been addressed :sweat_smile:.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n5EQdkMrITw

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My current setup is simple: Altec Lansing AT-LP5 -> AudioEngine HD3

The LP5 has a built-in phono pre-amp, the HD3s are powered, so it’s a straight RCA connection between the two. The HD3s also have a built in headphone amp that I sometimes use with my Sennheiser Momentum 2.0 wireless headphones, obviously using 3.5mm.

THE LP5 has a USB port for ripping into digital formats, not that useful for me personally but is what I used for the YouTube above.

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The computer desk looks so much like the Ikea desk that goes up and down, is it that one ?_?

Yup! Except its the ‘normal’ version that doesn’t go up and down :). Well, you can adjust its height, but it’s not the powered standing desk that you’re probably thinking of.

I didn’t know it existed as a “stationary table” as well! When I see it in Ikea I only see the motorized version.
Sorry for the semi-hijacking of the thread, but my 5.1 audio system has nothing to do with vinyls xP

No fuss. It’s the Ikea Bekant, still have the link saved from research:

http://www.ikea.com/tw/zh/catalog/products/S59022793/

Quick review: Big and well finished, but as a computer/gaming desk it can be a bit wobbly since it’s only got two legs. I have it right up against the wall with padding to prevent my monitor from wobbling when bashing the keyboard.

Let-Me-Talk-About-An-Album-I-Have™ #1

… Or in this case, a double album.

When ‘Hey Ya’ debuted in the Australian summer of 2004, the blend of Andre 3000’s distinct vocals with a funk/soul track, plus the all famous “shake it like a polaroid picture” hook made it a party banger nationwide. It sat at the top of the ARIA charts (the Aussie version of Billboard) for two weeks, with subsequent single releases of ‘The Way You Move’ and ‘Roses’ peaking at number 7 and 2 respectively. Fun fact: the last week ‘Roses’ was in the charts, Maroon 5’s ‘She Will Be Loved’ hit number 1.

Whilst I enjoyed the Outkast singles and had the album via shitty pirated 128kbps mp3’s (standard poor uni student excuse), I didn’t really think too much of the album once the singles slowly drifted off air and away from the mainstream conscious.

It is now one of my favourite albums of the 2000’s, thanks to EA Sports - IT’S IN THE GAME.

I still remember when I first loaded my pirated copy of Tiger Woods PGA Tour 2005 (again, poor uni student excuse), the opening title track was a chopped version of ‘The Way You Move’, with ‘GhettoMusick’ also featured within the game. However, it really was Big Boi’s performance in ‘The Way You Move’ plus the catchy horn section that I felt was my trusted caddy as I transitioned from amateur to pro in the game’s career mode.

This nerd pathway has helped me to have continued contact with the entire double album outside the game and is now one of my go-to albums. I felt both albums, whilst very different in their genre-meld, held up their ends of the bargain with the Love Below having more knockout punches and Speakerboxxx being more consistent track to track. Lesser known tracks like ‘Dracula’s Wedding’, ‘Spread’ and the aforementioned ‘GhettoMusick’ are all great and adds to a ~2 hour listening experience that don’t need to be skipped.

A great double album for all and a must for hip hop lovers, on any format.

OutKast - Speakerboxxx/The Love Below

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Let-Me-Talk-About-An-Album-I-Have™ #2

https://www.instagram.com/p/Ba1wEVXHn0I/

‘Zombie’ hit the airwaves in Australia at the end of ‘94 when I was still a young’un and dominated the charts that summer. Despite its dark undertone and message (written as a tribute to the 1993 IRA bombings that killed two young English lads), it sat at the top of the charts for 7 weeks and remain The Cranberries’ biggest commercial success. Like many others, it was my introduction to the band’s music, but those two delved a bit deeper into ‘Ode To My Family’, or any of their other albums, would realise that ‘Zombie’ was a bit of an outlier musically, and did reflect the style of their music as a whole, and I’m glad for that.

For those that only know The Cranberries from their biggest hit, I would implore you to randomly listen to their catalogue at via the streaming service of your choice to see what the band is really like.

My personal favourite track from the album was its second single released just as ‘Zombie’ began its slide down the charts. Many would say that ‘Ode To My Family’ was a bit more-of-the-same from The Cranberries, but to me, the brighter tones and musical style is what I like about The Cranberries. I really get caught up in the simple melodies backing up the warm yet crisp vocals from Dolores O’Riordan that the band is generally known for. I wouldn’t list ‘Zombie’ as a top 5 track of the album personally despite its critical acclaim.

The perfect album for Taipei’s current gloomy weather forecast with a book in hand, but definitely the vocals stand up with closer scrutiny. Could probably pair well with good/bad 90’s teen sitcoms like Party of Five.

The Cranberries - No Need To Argue

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Really really cool short report about a vinyl enthusiast south Taiwan in Meinong 美濃區 who also has a B&B so maybe can combine the two during a visit, and some vinyl history in Taiwan. Hey @Liub

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Wow, he’s way more serious than me! But pretty awesome, thanks for the heads up @tango42 if I have the chance to pop by I would love to.

I got back into vinyl and cassettes a couple of years ago. I bought my record player from Japan - 2 in fact - one is back in the UK already.
I recently sent all my vinyl back to the UK (as I am returning soon), but would still buy some should I see any bargains. I won’t pay stupid prices for a record.
Many 2nd hands stores have tons of junk. It is a chore going through it.

Reviving this thread to see if there’s anyone else currently doing the vinyl hobby and/or HiFi. I’ve been getting into this more over the past year. Here’s my current set-up:

Phono stage and turntable from MoFi, Schiit amp, and Buchardt speakers. It’s a bit of a mess as I swap things in and out pretty often.

Hoping to hear about good shops for both new/ used records and equipment. Sometimes I find the shops here cold and uninviting, especially the equipment shops.

I bought my current turntable and phono stage here:

Ark Audio
No. 15, Lane 248, Section 3, Zhongxiao East Road, Da’an District, Taipei City, 106
02 2778 9007

The owner is more of an enthusiast than a businessman by his own description, which is both good and bad. He’s not at all pushy and this can make him seem a bit aloof, but he was patient and I spent about 3hrs there listening to different options. He has a varied but limited collection for auditioning, but you can bring your own of course. They do sell some records as well. He speaks pretty good English but I imagine if you speak Chinese he might be a little more comfortable.

I’m also fond of this little record shop. They only have new stock, so it can be a little pricey, but you can buy a beer and hang out a bit while browsing. Very friendly staff who was comfortable chatting a bit in English and making a recommendation. They can order just about anything it seems.

White Wabbit Records
No. 1-1, Lane 21, Pucheng Street, Da’an District, Taipei City, 106
02 2369 7915

Thanks @Liub for starting this thread, hopefully you are still into the hobby.

There is a second hand vinyl place near that White Wabbit Records. The red door. You walk through and enter trove of old vinyl. You can find one or two good things there. Lots of junk though.

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Admittedly these kinds of places can be a little tough for me. I sort of have to be in the right mindset. Thank you for the tip!

I have a Thorens TD-150 record player that was damaged when I shipped from home. Does anyone know where I might be able to get it fixed?

Any recommendations for spots to buy jazz, soul, funk and disco records? I’ve been to Vinyl Decision (great but pricey) and White Wabbit (all new stock).

I’d ask about the repair here…

38℃ Record Store
No. 90-1, Section 2, Chongqing South Road, Zhongzheng District, Taipei City, 100
02 2305 4186

They have a bunch of old stuff in the basement and I just get the vibe if they don’t do repairs themselves, they could point you in the right direction. That’s a beautiful deck btw, let us know if you are successful.

38 degrees also has used records but the quality is hit or miss…for me it’s been mostly miss. Have you looked at the Eslite record store at their Xinyi location? They have new and used and I’ve had good luck with my used purchases from there.

That’s a nice setup you’ve got there. How do you like the Buchardt Audio speakers? I’ve read reviews, but haven’t heard them before. It looks as though you’ve got a tube amp tucked below the TT. Is it Chinese?

I’ve been building up my audio system for a couple years now. I brought each component here in my luggage. My system is an IceEdge1200as2 amp, Don Sachs Model 2 6SN7 preamp, 2 DACs: Sabaj D5 and my newly upgraded SW1X DAC III+. My speakers are Fritz Loudspeakers LS/5-R two-way monitors. Cabling is from Triode Wire Labs (TWL). Room size and my lovely wife make treating our living room with acoustic panels nearly impossible.

I just returned from the US yesterday, so no one is invited to my home to listen. You no doubt understand why. :wink:

I do not own a TT, but I hope to acquire one before too long.

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I like them, my wife loves them though. They play quite low for their size, amazingly low actually. They are very easy to listen to but sometimes I feel the mid range detail is just a little bit lacking. They are a bit power hungry as well. I’m being hyper critical though, they are quite good. You can put on anything and listen for hours. They play pop/electronic music particularly well.

It is, good eye…it’s this one:

I actually bought it by accident as it’s output is too low to power any of my speakers adequately. I meant to buy another similar model from the same site. So, now I’m considering whether to buy a small set of sensitive speakers that will work better or just sell it on. It’s quite beautiful and well made, all the wiring is point to point. A nice paperweight at the moment.

I’m not familiar with any of your gear. Thanks for sharing, I’ll be reading up for sure. I won’t bother doing room treatment here until we own a place and I can have a dedicated room for it. The current space is a bit of a nightmare though and I have considered experimenting with DSP correction with something like MiniDSP.

Your S400s are…could I say ‘middling’ sensitivity at 88dB and 4 ohm. Is it because of the passive radiator that they want a bit more power? I’ve got a KT88 amp back in the US that makes practically every speaker I’ve owned sound wonderful. Perhaps something similar would work well with them?

My LS/5-R speakers are very low sensitivity - 83dB/8 ohms. However, the crossover is a series design that is somewhat easier to power. Nonetheless, I discovered that 100w, 150w solid state amps, and a 35w tube amp lacked enough power to make them ‘sing’. They still made music, but it wasn’t fully dynamic. I’ll try to upload a photo of one of them.

It could be …but I’m a bit of a newb when it comes to technical details of speaker design. My understanding is that the passive radiators only react to what else is happening inside the box, how applied power affects that in the total design, well I’m pretty ignorant. I just know they do a bit better against the Vidar vs another Cambridge integrated amp I currently have. The tube amp is a non starter of course. I know they have been criticized some places for the crossover they employ.

Those are gorgeous BTW.