What makes vinyl better than digital
12on12 was formed to homage the amazing artistry of vinyl records, the original music format since 1930. Record pressing is a nod to our analogue past, combining science and alchemy to create a product we generally keep for a lifetime.
Producers capture signals from mics or instruments and these recordings are then mixed and mastered in the studio.
A vinyl record is made by cutting lacquer with a lathe after the finished recording is sent electronically. The waveform of the music determines the shape of the grooves cut by the lathe. A metal master (or "mother") is produced by coating a lacquer disc with metal, and a stamper creates a negative version of the mother. Vinyl records are made by loading the stamper into a hydraulic press and pressing it into vinyl stock.
During playback, your record player's needle (or stylus) follows the record's groove and sends an electrical signal using a tiny electromagnetic generator called a cartridge. The signal can be produced by either a moving magnet (MM) or a moving coil (MC) - both use magnets and coils of wire. The electric current generated by a corrective equaliser and amplified can generate the physical movement of speakers in all-analogue playback chains, which effectively reproduces the recorded sound.
Unlike other formats, vinyl captures every bit of the analogue wave, making it the only format that is truly lossless. We were captivated by the attention to detail, the process of making the highest-quality sound recordings, and the physical elements of vinyl.
Materiality is one of the most seductive aspects of vinyl's tactility. A record occupies a particular place and time because it is physical. They are stored on shelves, removed from sleeves, and placed on turntables. Apart from the vinyl disc, a record's packaging contains various other physical components.
Vinyl also has many visual aspects. Album artwork is usually the most iconic part of the record, with many examples of covers that have become timeless, enduring cultural icons, like Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon. You can add artwork to vinyl in various ways, from the picture disc to the inner sleeve and jacket - even the polybag can be used as a canvas. Vinyl records are décor pieces in their own right, which is why we create vinyl records to complement your musical and design tastes.
Most of the information inscribed on discs and sleeves is lost on digital. As a result of this information on vinyl, the narrative, history, and context are built. incorporating information about the artist, musicians, producer, recording studio, recording date, label, lyrics, shout-outs, number of pressings, and so on. Even though this information is often available digitally, the source isn't the format but internet access in general. Due to the extra effort it takes to see the information, listeners aren't compelled to take notice. Information on the record and sleeves announces itself loudly, transparently, and contextually.
Compared to digital, vinyl records enrich the aesthetic experience and expand the artists storytelling.