is vinyl superior sound to cd?

about 2 years ago now i bought the watership down 1978 soundtrack on cd, i couldn't afford the vinyl version and i do not have a vinyl record player anymore....ive saw people online who comment that vinyl sound is always far superior sound to that of a this true and why?

12 Answers

  • 6 months ago
    Best answer

    CDs are clearer and due to their nature of sampling, do not capture the full sound possible.

    On the other hand, Vinyl gives you that full sound + scratches, hisses and distortions. That is its nature.

    Of the two, I'd prefer the CD. I am not enough of an audiophile to detect the missing sound, but I sure as heck can detect the sounds that aren't supposed to be there, but are with vinyl.

    The best of both worlds would be to have a new digital standard, that has a much higher sample rate, and higher bit sound range than CDs do. Then you'd get fuller sound without the extra noise and distortions. They do have this..but there is no standard and it's a niche audience.

    • Robert J
      Lv 7
      5 months agoReport

      Pennybags - Yes, you CAN buy blu-ray audio discs.
      Discogs list over 500 Blu-Ray audio titles so far & there are probably far more than that already:

  • David
    Lv 5
    5 months ago

    No, no and hell no. The only people who have deluded them selves into believing that are smelly hipsters.

  • 6 months ago

    Ask HMV ! they are still available for rent!

  • In
    Lv 7
    6 months ago

    I enjoy noise free music without having to clean a record, replace a stylus, adjust the tone arm counter balance, and flipping a record. I also enjoy being able to play my music on a 5 disc changer, in the car, in a portable stereo, in a Walkman, or on my computer drive.

    • Mamianka
      Lv 7
      6 months agoReport

      My point exactly. I niow choose convenience over a different sound. Better? Not? Still prefer LIVE - all day long in this house.

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  • 6 months ago

    No, CD is superior to vinyl.

    but don't try to tell a vinyl devotee that.

    I have and use both.

    In my experience, records Just Can Not equal CDs for sound quality.


    • Robert J
      Lv 7
      5 months agoReport

      "Vinyl" is a new religion - devotees totally ignore all technical facts and evidence.

      Listen to what you like, but don't claim liking something means it's "better" when evidence proves otherwise.

  • lare
    Lv 7
    6 months ago

    an audioCD is uncompressed digital and offers much less distortion and no added noises compared to analog, either vinyl or tape. MPEG3 digital audio, which is used mostly for internet and computer files has many issues that compromise its quality, so it would be a toss-up when compared with good analog gear. Another instance where digital is better than analog is FM radio. HD radio presents much better audio for an automobile listening environment because it is immune to multipath distortion in urban areas and no fading in rural areas.

  • 6 months ago


    The only way LPs can hypothetically be better is high frequency response, but that is above the range of normal human hearing anyway.

    That also assumes they are played on absolutely perfect equipment (which which rules out anything any normal person can afford anyway).

    In every other way - noise, low frequency response, durability etc. CD is better regardless of equipment used to play a vinyl disc; it's simply superseded by better technology.

    Newer digital audio formats with higher sample rates and higher bit depths are better still, 2 - 8x better resolution than CD, and are far beyond any "vinyl" record system.

    [Electronics designer and audio enthusiast for 40+ years].

    Edit re.comments to this and other answers:

    And any generic CD player, PC audio setup or "surround sound DVD/Blu-ray player" will have better audio quality than anything less than any "vinyl player" being pushed on the public..

    How does my answer not fit with the "middling or less" quality gear?

    Mamianka says:

    ..then perhaps in time you can hear the better sound quality...

    The "better sound quality which only possibly (hypothetically could only) exists above around 20KHz ??

    Exactly what percentage of adults old enough to appreciate serious music can hear that range?

    Near enough zero. Sorry, but you make a meaningless claim there.

    The best _possible_ noise floor for LPs is around -60db to just possibly -70db. That is a limit of the physics of the mechanical reproduction system.

    The 16 bit digital format used in CD audio has a fundamental noise floor of about -100db.

    Any distortion caused by digitisation within normal audible frequencies is far, far below the levels that any "vinyl" system can possibly reproduce undistorted on any possible equipment.

    LPs (vinyl) are simply NOT, EVER as good as CDs on a technical basis.

    Different recordings may be different qualities and different producers may mix masters in different ways, so subjectively different releases may occasionally sound different, but that is nothing to do with which user format is technically better.

    Re. the "top technology" - Blu-ray audio can be anything up to 24 bit 192KHz sample rate. I suspect quite a decent percentage of people on here have blu-ray systems??

    • Mamianka
      Lv 7
      6 months agoReport

      The top of ANY technology is incredible - but most of the folks who ask here, and talking about middling or less. If I hear about their Crosley one more time, I am gonna hurl. Other hand - if one more cosmetic ad talks about hiding EVERYTHING on my face - just make a plaster death mask.

  • Anonymous
    6 months ago

    Actually 8 track is.

    When the singers sing in the studio it gets recorded to a big reel to reel 8 track.

    Then the reel to reel 8 track gets transferred to vinyl records [superior format]

    CD [digital format]

    Anymore they use digital equipment [I'm assuming] so everything digitally mastered and this theory don't apply anymore.

    • Robert J
      Lv 7
      6 months agoReport

      See page 52 of this document for the technical details of the first studio 8-track digital machine, in 1977:

  • 6 months ago

    Some people like the sound of vinyl better, but compact disc is better at actually reproducing the sound.

    (Now watch the audiophiles pile on.)

  • 6 months ago

    No digital is superior.

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