Saving vinyl

Anyone have experience with the current state of turning vinyl records into decent digital audio formats (e.g. FLAC)? My guitar buddy and I have been learning songs from bands who were active before I was born, and some of the late 70s era stuff has never existed in digital formats. Doug thinks nothing of playing his LPs at thunderous volume over and over again, but I worry on his behalf and would like to be able to give him good advice on preservation.

I know there are record players for relatively cheap that have USB built in to talk to the computer, but he already has a decent (I’m guessing) record player and an external digital audio interface. I’m guessing it is as simple as connecting one to the other and setting one’s levels properly, and hitting record on Audacity, but if anyone knows a good guide or recommended hardware, I’m interested.

It sounds like that should work. I think the built-in ones automate the processor, but since you know more than the average person about audio from other threads, I can’t see why your flow wouldn’t work.

An interesting bit of trivia is one way they’re cleaning vinyl for restoration is apparently the same thing some of us did to kill time in school: Coat the record in a thin layer of elmer’s glue then carefully pull it off, so it pulls the dirt and such away as it comes.

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He’s seeing if he can figure it out with the hints and link to Audacity I provided. Not a computer guy, but pretty clever. Most of his music gear (amps and things) is trash that he reconditioned and/or repaired.

Some of those turntables default to MP3 format with the software they include, so steering him towards Audacity means he will have more flexibility in getting a higher-quality digital file.

For backing up CDs, I had been making two versions: WAV and MP3, but on this Linux computer, I switched to OGG and MP3. I only have a few vinyl records and no turntable at the moment, but I should get one. Some of these probably also haven’t ever been released in a digital format. I know for certain the “Yakima Trolleys” / “Spaceman” 45 record hasn’t.

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