Direct-to-Disc

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
7,403
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#1
Literally every single vinyl aficionado loves direct-to-disc recordings.

This hobby supports numerous complex, fanatically perfectionistic, expensive, low-volume endeavors. ERC's projects come to mind.

Why isn't anyone bothering to record direct-to-disc today?

Of course it would be risky financially, but when has that ever stopped passion projects in this industry?

And if done properly the sound quality of the resulting LPs would attract many of our cost-no-object members to buy them.
 

Mike Lavigne

Member Sponsor & WBF Founding Member
Apr 25, 2010
8,350
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#2
direct to disc is challenging......here are four current labels that are making the effort. it's not always the ideal way for finding the best most inspired performance. but sometimes magic happens.

https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=4857
https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=4078
https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=131
https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=5321

i have some/most of these. jazdoc and i listened to this one last night on the Etsuro Gold.....fantastic!

https://store.acousticsounds.com/d/141818/Joscho_Stephan_Trio-Paris-Berlin-D2D_Vinyl_Record
 

asiufy

Member Sponsor
Jul 8, 2011
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San Diego, CA
almaaudio.com
#3

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
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Beverly Hills, CA
#4
Thank you for letting us know, Mike and Alex
direct to disc is challenging......here are four current labels that are making the effort. it's not always the ideal way for finding the best most inspired performance. but sometimes magic happens.

https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=4857
https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=4078
https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=131
https://store.acousticsounds.com/index.cfm?get=results&categoryid=20&LabelID=5321

i have some/most of these. jazdoc and i listened to this one last night on the Etsuro Gold.....fantastic!

https://store.acousticsounds.com/d/141818/Joscho_Stephan_Trio-Paris-Berlin-D2D_Vinyl_Record
Thank you for posting these links, Mike!
 

cjfrbw

Well-Known Member
Apr 20, 2010
2,576
327
260
Pleasanton, CA
#5
You can wind up with great quality recordings with warts 'n all, hit or miss performances without lab intervention. I always thought of them as being demo pieces to display the ultimate sonic capabilities of vinyl but not for routine ingestion.
 
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Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
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Beverly Hills, CA
#6
You can wind up with great quality recordings with warts 'n all, hit or miss performances without lab intervention. I always thought of them as being demo pieces to display the ultimate sonic capabilities of vinyl but not for routine ingestion.
Assuming the performance is great why not DtoD for routine listening?

If it were not more expensive than vodka, I would be perfectly happy to drink champagne almost all the time. :)
 

Mike Lavigne

Member Sponsor & WBF Founding Member
Apr 25, 2010
8,350
1,862
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#7
Assuming the performance is great why not DtoD for routine listening?

If it were not more expensive than vodka, I would be perfectly happy to drink champagne almost all the time. :)
if you have 100-150.....maybe 200 direct to disc pressings out of 7000+ pressings, the math is the math.

i have over 1000 (maybe 1500) 45rpm pressings, those are a more played group than my direct to disc.

i would say that the direct to disc group is prominent in my reference tracks for testing. but i try to play the field mostly for daily listening.

and i like water for most of my drinking.......i do indulge with Fiji and San Pelegrino mostly for that. single malt is my adult beverage of choice when the mood suits. or a beer.
 
Likes: Ron Resnick
May 30, 2010
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Portugal
#8
Assuming the performance is great why not DtoD for routine listening?

The direct to disk technic limits enormously the music genres and the interpretation quality we can get in recordings. Although I like the media and listen with pleasure from time to time to a few of my D2D's, I can't consider it a significant species in my listening time.

IMHO some D2D recordings are simply different from other conventionally recorded LPs, not better than the best. But surely highly enjoyable.
 
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Uk Paul

Member Sponsor
Sep 27, 2012
404
41
110
UK
#9
I picked up 2 Decca DMM Stravinsky's, Petrouchka & The Rite of Spring, both Dorati, from a fave record shop in Bologna which are TELDEC, a collaboration between Telefunken and Decca, (for 6euro each!), both 100% mint. Sound is astonishing, surface noise very very low, (but a strong point of all Aidas carts). Given the chance to buy more, I will jump no question, I guess that the knowledge has not been passed on maybe?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Direct_metal_mastering
 

Kal Rubinson

Well-Known Member
May 5, 2010
1,714
160
225
NYC/CT
www.stereophile.com
#10
Why isn't anyone bothering to record direct-to-disc today?
Because, although "Literally every single vinyl aficionado loves direct-to-disc recordings," very few of this already minute niche are musically interesting.
 

Gregadd

WBF Founding Member
Apr 20, 2010
6,975
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Metro DC
#11
D2D like all front runners eventually sink back into the pack.
 

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
7,403
1,672
440
Beverly Hills, CA
#12
The direct to disk technic limits enormously the music genres and the interpretation quality we can get in recordings. Although I like the media and listen with pleasure from time to time to a few of my D2D's, I can't consider it a significant species in my listening time.

IMHO some D2D recordings are simply different from other conventionally recorded LPs, not better than the best. But surely highly enjoyable.
The direct-to-disc technique doesn't limit conceptually the music for live, authentic (non-multi-track, unedited, non-ProTools) performances. It just makes the recording much, much more difficult for the engineers and the performers.

In theory you could bring Fleetwood Mac into the studio and re-record the Fleetwood Mac album direct-to-disc.

I fully appreciate that, as a practical matter, it is very difficult to record great musical performances using this technique. We can have the sonic quality of direct-to-disc, or the great musical performances of conventional recording, but not both.

Obviously we cannot at any cost go back and re-record our favorite classical and jazz performances with the original conductors and musicians.
 
Last edited:

asiufy

Member Sponsor
Jul 8, 2011
3,494
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195
San Diego, CA
almaaudio.com
#13
I don't know about Fleetwood Mac specifically, but a lot of rock albums consist of numerous overdubs. Led Zeppelin albums have many guitar parts overdubbed. So having the band play the music live and direct to disc, while fun, might not be as fun or fulfilling as a carefully crafted studio album, in spite of the lesser sound quality generally associated with heavily overdubbed studio albums.
 
May 30, 2010
16,222
1,200
420
Portugal
#14
The direct-to-disc technique doesn't limit conceptually the music for live, authentic (non-multi-track, unedited, non-ProTools) performances. It just makes the recording much, much more difficult for the engineers and the performers.

In theory you could bring Fleetwood Mac into the studio and re-record the Fleetwood Mac album direct-to-disc.

I fully appreciate that, as a practical matter, it is very difficult to record great musical performances using this technique. We can have the sonic quality of direct-to-disc, or the great musical performances of conventional recording, but not both.

Obviously we cannot at any cost go back and re-record our favorite classical and jazz performances with the original conductors and musicians.
We do not listen to concepts and theories - we listen to real stereo recordings, carried by humans using real equipment and unfortunately also subjected to Murphy Law during their execution.
The stress and the limitations imposed by the direct cut process are incompatible with most music recordings.

We must also remember that the conditions of work of musicians changed a lot during the last 50 years - thanks to their unions they now have maximum session time, breaks and schedules very different from the past. The old system, repeat until the producer is pleased does not apply anymore.
 
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zerostargeneral

Well-Known Member
Apr 14, 2018
310
248
48
#16
Dear Ron,

The world is mainly lacking in the skill sets to achieve that which you request.

ERC are not really D2D,however the man behind them is ultra tasteful and driven by excellence not money.

The only route to perfection is removing the bottom feeders and charlatans that proliferate the entire industry.

Equally the market for quality is very small in the audio world because most in it have little knowledge of the differences that make the difference.

As long as the scum chase the buck,this is what we have and this is what we become.

I am personally saddened by the fact that the golden era will never be repeated,a time when two bob was a way to describe price,
now it is the usual way of describing workmanship and work ethic.

Kindest regards,G.
 
Last edited:

Tango

VIP/Donor
Mar 12, 2017
3,462
2,792
335
Bangkok
#17
Dear Ron,

The world is mainly lacking in the skill sets to achieve that which you request.

ERC are not really D2D,however the man behind them is ultra tasteful and driven by excellence not money.

The only route to perfection is removing the bottom feeders and charlatans that proliferate the entire industry.

Equally the market for quality is very small in the audio world because most in it have little knowledge of the differences that make the difference.

As long as the scum chase the buck,this is what we have and this is what we become.

I am personally saddened by the fact that the golden era will never be repeated,a time when two bob was a way to describe price,
now it is the usual way of describing workmanship and work ethic.

Kindest regards,G.
Dear G,

Did you get a chance to listen to the ERC Sonny Way Out West? How is it.

Kind regards,
Tang
 

Ron Resnick

Site Co-Owner, Administrator
Jan 25, 2015
7,403
1,672
440
Beverly Hills, CA
#19
Dear Ron,

The world is mainly lacking in the skill sets to achieve that which you request.

ERC are not really D2D,however the man behind them is ultra tasteful and driven by excellence not money.

The only route to perfection is removing the bottom feeders and charlatans that proliferate the entire industry.

Equally the market for quality is very small in the audio world because most in it have little knowledge of the differences that make the difference.

As long as the scum chase the buck,this is what we have and this is what we become.

I am personally saddened by the fact that the golden era will never be repeated,a time when two bob was a way to describe price,
now it is the usual way of describing workmanship and work ethic.

Kindest regards,G.

Dear G,

Thank you for your reply.

(I appreciate that ERC is not D2D; I cited ERC as an example, I think, of a firm pursuing perfection without limiting quality to achieve a specific retail price point.)

It certainly is a terrible shame that the Golden Era will never recur!

Kindest regards,

Ron
 

zerostargeneral

Well-Known Member
Apr 14, 2018
310
248
48
#20
Dear Ron,

Sorry if I came over as correctional in some way,certainly not my intention.

I took a personal segue and reduced the response;no chance because......

The individuals that performed,recorded,produced,mastered and lacquered were not exalted by money rather peer appreciation.

They were able to collaborate in a time rife with war and hatred.During such periods they strove for the best at all times.

Take a cross section of the gen-pop right now and ask them to do work without pocket lining and deception;unlikely.

Kindest regards,G.
 

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