|Typical Hi-Fi Rack System|
|Our Parents' Hi-Fi System|
|My Uncle's Reel to Reel|
|Pile of Records|
|The Vinyl Lathe|
|This CD will not Play. . .|
|Will Any of These CDs Play? Who Knows?|
The experience caused me to realize that for all their inconvenience vinyl records were superior to CDs in just about every conceivable way. Every single time I've ever put a record on a record player, it played. Even a record with a crack or a skip in it would play. If one track on an album had a flaw in it, you could still listen to every other track on that album. I once had a record with a hole in it; I couldn't listen to the two songs where the hole was but I could still listen to all the other songs on that album. I just had to be very careful not to let the needle fall into the hole. Easy to do because I could see the hole. You can actually listen to a record on an old turntable with no electricity; it's very quiet and you have to spin the record by hand at a consistent speed, but it can be done. Try that with a CD. Sure, records popped and hissed and sometimes skipped. They also worked.
And, they were tangible. Yes, using the lint brush on every record every time you listened was a pain. But, there was also something satisfying about physically holding your music in your hands. I think I may have to go buy one of those turntables this week.