WHAT IS VINYL CUTTING AND HOW DOES IT WORK?
Vinyl cutting is the physical cutting of your audio onto vinyl. Whereas a large run vinyl is pressed from a master plate, here we cut your audio on our in house lathe direct to each record, in real time. This mean there is no minimum order producing one off's, or short runs. This is a process of routing audio from our mastering suite to our in house lathe, which then sends the audio to the cutter head and cuts the audio grooves into 2mm heavyweight records via the diamond stylus. The reason we only cut onto 2mm heavyweight records is both for quality and durability, these will last as long, if not longer than a pressed wax vinyl. After this, we package the records in paper inners and card sleeves with blank or printed labels and ship to you.
If we are mastering the audio, then we have all we need already for cutting. Alternatively, if you are submitting masters for cutting, we require audio in either WAV or AIFF format, please ensure that the sample rate is the same as the master project to ensure no sample rate conversions, along with a bit depth of either 32bit or 24bit. Please ensure that no dithering is selected and none or if any, very little brick wall limiting. Audio must be submitted online to firstname.lastname@example.org.
See below for how this process works.
YOU SEND US AUDIO
Either we master, or already mastered audio that meets our needs.
WE GET TO WORK
We analyze and check audio and prepare for cutting.
Now we cut your audio to the vinyl records via our lathe.
WE SUPPLY RECORDS
You receive your records in the post and digital masters via email if requested.
AUDIO SPECIFICATIONS FOR CUTTING
24bit / 32bit WAV or AIFF. No limit on sample rate.
LIMITING AND CLIPPING
Please ensure that there is none, or if any, very little brick wall limiting. The reason for this is due to heavily limited audio causing groove distortion and skipping.
There can be absolutely no phase problems in the low end. If there is phase issues it can cause skipping and make the record unplayable. This is often caused by stereo bass content. The safest way to avoid these issues is to keep the everything below 150hz in mono. This is best addressed at the mixing stage if possible but can be fixed in the mastering stage if needed.
The sibilant frequencies of vocals and some instruments can cause distortion. Please make sure all de-essing is fixed in the mixing stage. It is possible to fix later, but for optimum results, addressing at the mixing stage is preferable.
HIGH AND LOW END
Both sub frequencies below 40z and high frequencies above 15khz can cause many problems and must be controlled. Do not try to add too much ‘sizzle’ as this will translate at distortion. Likewise, adding too much ‘sub’ can cause skipping and a bad cut.
TRACK ORDER AND SEQUENCING
Due to the physical nature of a record, as the grooves get closer to the centre of the record the length of each rotation is reduced, meaning the grooves must pack in more information. This is a trade off for noise and loss of high frequencies. This is why is it advised to keep running times short as possible for optimum results. If cutting an album, consider that the last song of each side could suffer from this, so it is often advisable to have the quietest or least ‘heavy’ song last one each side of the record.
VINYL RUNNING TIMES
OPTIMAL – 3 minutes per side
MAXIMUM – 4 minutes per side
OPTIMAL – 6 minutes per side
MAXIMUM – 8 minutes per side
OPTIMAL – 8 minutes per side
MAXIMUM – 10 minutes per side
33 1/3 RPM
We do not cut 7" at this speed due to it being the lowest possible quality.
OPTIMAL – 9 minutes per side
MAXIMUM – 12 minutes per side
OPTIMAL – 15 minutes per side
MAXIMUM – 20 minutes per side