In all the years I’ve been plugged into ‘teh intrawebz’, I’ve discovered one immutable fact: For every potential group, for every interest, for every hobby or pasttime, there is a sub-section of that group/interest/hobby/pasttime that is so fastidious, anal-retentive, and pathologically obsessive about their knowledge of this topic that they will vent ad nauseum about it on the sundry forums that ‘teh intrawebs’ provide which elevate them to esteemed positions of nobility within their tiny realm of specialization.
It is my humble opinion now, that the group with the greatest predillection towards this behavior is audiophiles. Specifically, a subgroup I call “The Vinyl Taliban”. (“Turntable Nazis” would also be appropriate, ‘cuz you know, no internet discussion is complete until one person calls another “Hitler”.)
I’ve always been a fan of vinyl- while using, storing, and caring for records is a verifiable pain in the patootie, I genuinely do believe they have a sound quality that is fundamentally different from CDs. Note that I did not say “better”, simply “different”. Personally, I prefer this different quality, and so I’ve decided to drag my ancient Technics deck out of semi-retirement, polish it up, install a new cartridge, align it as best I can, clean my records off, and convert them to mp3 so I can listen to them in my car. To start with, I began searching ‘teh intrawebz’ for some information on the above topics.
Oh. My. God. The vinyl forums are crazy. “This is the best way I’ve found to do “x”, don’t do it any other way!” – claims one person. “YOU STUPID FOOL!!! YOU’LL RUIN YOUR RECORDS FOREVER IF YOU DO “x”!!!” interjects another. And back and forth they go. Its seriously enough to make a body go out and buy the cheapest Sounddesign turntable from Goodwill, put a virgin copy of an obscure first pressing from the 1960’s on it, drop a brick on the tonearm and post a picture to the forums to hear all the nutjobs howl with contempt.