If you are a newbie to the world of vinyl collection, you need to handle the process with care. Buying vinyl records for fun or for business purpose can be great only if you do it right. Unlike CDs and digital files that have almost no value in the secondary market, vinyl records are likely to give you a good return on your investment. Whether old or new, these records retain a lot of value. As long as you have a copy that it in good condition and its title has some demand, you are likely to make good profit from it if you decide to sell it.
The Right to Do Your Vinyl Collection
To be able to get the most out of your vinyl collection, the following are some of the things you will need to do.
Make Sure You Have a Place to Store the Records
It is important to get your vinyl storage solution first before you go out there and start looking for re-issues of your favorite vinyl records. It is recommended to store the records vertically. Do not store them flat like pancakes because theywill be at a great risk of catching dust or getting damaged. For a start, the 4-shelf IKEA Kallax will be great. It will cost you approximately 35 USD and is the perfect size for albums or LPs from the dollar bin.
Create Digital Backups of the Records
When you buy vinyl records, it is probably because you want to listen to them or resell them later on. Nobody goes through the trouble of collecting vinyl records just to look at them. Making copies or digital backups of the records will prevent you from wearing them out just in case you will be using them more often. It will also be easy for you to take the tracks with you on the go if you have backups.
You should not have a difficult time creating digital backups of your records because there are many options for that nowadays. A smart approach to this process will be the ION Vinyl Forever kit that will cost you as little as $30. It is very easy to use. You simply need to use RCA cables to connect your record player to the Vinyl Forever box which is then linked to a computer with a USB cable. The kit comes with EZ Vinyl/Tape converter software that is meant to help you make digital files.
Store the Records in an Area with Controlled Temperature
It is advisable to add a humidifier in the room or area that you will store your vinyl records. The room should have a relative humidity of about 40 percent. The best humidifier for this purpose would be the Holmes Whole House Smart Humidifier that goes for approximately $200. This humidifier is designed to operate for 60 hours without the need for refilling tanks. Controlling the humidity level in the room will be absolutely easy using the Belkin WeMo app that can be installed on your smartphone.
Buy a High Quality Turntable
You need to invest in a great turntable if you want to get the most out of the vinyl records that you will buy. Even if you are operating on a tight budget, you should try your best to get a high quality turntable. Do not settle for a low quality or cheap turntable with the excuse that you do not have enough money. With as little as 150 USD, you can get a nice and high quality record player like the Audio Technica AT-LP60-USB that features an aluminum platter as well as a stylus with dual magnets to accurately read the grooves on the records. Another thing that you would love about this model is its built-in ability to connect to a laptop or computer for digital backup. There will be no need for purchasing a separate gear for backing up files digitally later on.
Swap out Old Cartridge
This is something that you should consider doing if you want to enjoy the best sound possible from your vinyl records. To get good sound, a dual magnet cartridge will be the best. If you are a true audiophile, you may want to look for a moving coil cartridge because it produces much better sound compared to the dual magnet cartridge. It features coils that are small enough to read subtle grooves of both new and old records. Swapping of cartridges is possible with most older turntables, but there are some cheaper models that come with a fixed stylus. So make sure that you are sure of the record player that you are buying to avoid regrets later on.
Buy High Quality Speakers and Headphones
While vinyl records are known for their warm and enveloping sound, you can only be able to enjoy that if you have the best speakers and headphones. It will be pointless to go through the trouble of looking for your favorite old vinyl records and turn around and dull their dynamic range by playing them through cheap or low quality speakers or headphones. You will need to purchase high quality headphones like the Mo-Fi set from Blue Microphones. They feature a built-in amplifier that pushes out more sound through the drivers. For the speakers, you can go with the Anthony Gallo Classico CL-4 speakers. They utilize carbon fibers for replicating just as the artist wanted.
Keep the Vinyl Records Clean
You have no option but to keep your vinyl records clean if you want to keep enjoying best sound quality from them for the longest time possible. If you play the records when they are dirty, they may get damaged and their sound quality affected. There are various ways that you can use to clean the vinyl records. It is recommended to clean them with a carbon fiber brush before and after play if you want to keep sounding great. Before deep cleaning the records, always remove surface dust and debris. Consider buying vinyl cleaning kits from your local record store whenever you want to clean them thoroughly.
If you are new to the vinyl world, you may not know that a classic record player does not come with a built-in amp. Your vinyl records might sound like a whisper if you connect this type of record player directly to a recent audio receiver or Bluetooth speaker. For the best sound, you should look for a receiver that has a phono stage or RCA input to add extra power for better fidelity. When it comes to purchasing the vinyl records and turntables, you have the option to buy them from record shops or online. If you are looking for something specific, consider buying online because that is where you will find endless options to choose from. Most importantly, you need to remember that buying vinyl is not only about the collection, but also about the experience. You need to look for records that you will enjoy listening to.