Most vinyl records are made with an inherent weakness in the middle of the record. If you’re not careful, when you play vinyl, it makes a pop or crackling sound. Whether you’re burning a single LP onto a CD or putting your next track on iTunes, your ears enjoy full sonic range.
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Causes for Pops and Cracks in Vinyl Records:
1. Dirt, dust and fingerprints:
When you’re playing records, dirt, dust and fingerprints get on the record. When you play it back, the dirt abrades the diamond of the stylus. When this happens, your stylus starts to “touch” or “hit” your disc instead of skipping over it. This is true of scratched vinyl records.
2. Damaged discs:
When you play a damaged disc, sometimes the surface abrasion makes a pop noise when you play back the track. The crackle or pop noise is an indication that you need to replace your vinyl record.
3. Older records:
Most records were made in the 1950s and 1960s. The oldest records were made between World War I and World War II. If you have older records, it’s possible to hear pops and cracks in most tracks because of the age of your record. You can try cleaning and humidity control for vinyl to reduce the pops and cracks in your record player.
4. Not using a clean stylus:
Most people prefer using a brand new stylus instead of washing the old one. To avoid pops and cracks, you must remove the stylus from your turntable. Gently wash it with a brush and a mild cleanser, such as a cleaner for a washing machine. When you find a great cleaning method, try it on some quality vinyl before you start playing your favorite albums.
5. Putting the needle back in the groove:
Your needle can jump out of its track during playback if you’re not careful. To avoid this problem, place the needle on the outer edge of your record before you start playing it. This will protect your record from jumping needle action.
How to Avoid Pops and Cracks in Vinyl Records:
When vinyl is played without these little pops and cracks, old-school sounds are very hard to achieve. To avoid this noise that can be quite unpleasant for listeners, here are some tips for playing vinyl without pops and cracks.
1. Pick the Right Record Player
You’ve invested good money in a collection of vinyl records. Make sure you get the most from them by choosing a turntable that is designed to minimize pops and cracks in your music. Ideally, a minimal amount of mid-range sounds should be heard when playing your favorite vinyl.
You can generally check whether a record player will minimize pops and cracks by looking at its specs. Go for one with a low wow-and-flutter rating, along with low tracking error and signal-to-noise ratio.
2. Prevent Vibration from Distorting Your Music
As mentioned earlier, the pop and crack noise is caused by record player vibration interacting with the physical vinyl disc. Vibration is generally the main culprit of pops and cracks. So, if your record player is equipped with any vibration-reduction feature, make sure you use it to prevent pops and cracks.
You can try to figure out which makes the most difference for you by looking at the specs of the turntable player. Some turntables are particularly suited for music collectors, because they provide an opportunity to play more types of vinyl records than regular turntables.
3. Keep Your Turntable Clean
You want your records to never get lost, right? Then you must take proper care of them. To protect your vinyl collection, you should invest in a decent case for storing LP records. This helps to protect the disc against dust, dirt and scratches.
If your turntable comes with a dust cover, use this when you’re not playing music to avoid contamination problems. By caring properly for your vinyl records, you can extend their lifespan. You should remember to use your record player only when necessary.
4. Reducing and Eliminating Static:
Static is a big issue with vinyl records. This is caused by the buildup of dust and debris on your record player’s cartridge and stylus. To avoid this problem, use a good quality antistatic brush to clean the vinyl surface before you play the music.
You should switch to a brush with nylon bristles once you need to clean the hard-to-reach places on your records. The nylon bristles will work as an effective substitute for those potentially damaging rubber wheels that come with most antistatic brushes. Most importantly, you should replace your stylus and cartridge every few years and after every 200 hours of use to avoid this problem.
Vinyl records are relatively expensive to purchase. If you enjoy your music collection of vinyl records, make sure you store them properly. You will also need to take proper care of them to prevent pops and cracks. With these tips, you are on the way of avoiding pops and cracks on your vinyl records.
Well, it’s true that vinyl is more expensive than CD or even normal albums. But it’s also true that its sound quality is better than any other formats – both on first-time listening as well as during the next decades, when you play it over & over again.
Q: How can I prevent Crackle in my Vinyl Records?
A: Store your records in anti-static inner sleeves. With static being one of the principle causes of crackle, a cheap, fast and effective method by which you can reduce its build-up is by using anti-static inner sleeves to store your records. 2. Use an anti-static brush to clean your discs before playing them.
Q: Why do my vinyl records pop when I play them?
A: Clothes, sheets, furniture and (worst of all) our vinyl records start to build static electricity. Static electricity stored in our records causes pops and cracks because the electricity is picked up by the cartridge and amplified by the amplifier.
Q: How to clean vinyl records before playing them?
A: Use an anti-static brush to clean your discs before playing them. A good cleaning routine is one of the foundations of a well-maintained record collection, and using an anti-static brush to clean your vinyl before giving it a spin will also help to remove the built-up static that’s ready to discharge itself via your stylus. 3.
Q: Can vinyl records be fixed?
A: Luckily, when it comes to vinyl records, it can sometimes be fixed. Read on to find out how! I love that crackling and popping sound a vinyl record makes. There is a true beauty to it and some songs even feel like they sound better with it.