CD vs. LP: which one gets the most airtime in your listening room?

CD vs. LP: which one gets the most airtime in <I>your</I> listening room?
100% LP
3% (11 votes)
90% LP, 10% CD
9% (38 votes)
80% LP, 20% CD
7% (27 votes)
70% LP, 30% CD
6% (26 votes)
60% LP, 40% CD
4% (18 votes)
50% each
3% (12 votes)
40% LP, 60% CD
3% (13 votes)
30% LP, 70% CD
4% (16 votes)
20% LP, 80% CD
6% (25 votes)
10% LP, 90% CD
13% (54 votes)
100% CD
38% (156 votes)
other (explain)
3% (11 votes)
Total votes: 407

Most audiophiles' record collections include LPs <I>and</I> CDs, but one format invariably is played more than the other. In yours, which one is it, and by how much?

Anonymous's picture

I listen to LPs in my audio system. Indeed, there're no provision for CD there. I listen to CD as background in my video system, in the car and in the office computers. Tony

Brian Boehler's picture

While I still generally prefer LP's to CD's, I find that more and more CD's are recorded well enough that I tend to take the lazy way out. If 24/96 is really that much closer to LP and maybe in some ways superior, I may continue to let the LP number slip down the scale. While I appreciate what LP's do so well, I also will not ignore their limitations. Sometimes the noise and scratchs really bother me. The LP is a fantastic format that CD never quite caught up with. I hope that 24/96 or whatever they settle on will maybe finally match and in some areas surpass the old LP.

Hans-Peter Schmid's picture

I buy 90% CDs but like the sound of LP better. Schizophrenic?

Randy Peck's picture

As good as my Sonic Frontiers SFCD-1 is, I still prefer my turntable and LPs. After listening to CD for a while, I long for the sound of my LPs. What can I say? My LPs simply sound better. Case in point: The other night my wife and I had finally just settled down after a long day. Since I was pretty tired, I opted to listen to a CD. It was just easier. Mind you now, my wife always listens off-axis, usually while she reads. She is a nonaudilophile but enjoys the music. When the music started up, she immedately put the L.A. Times down and said, "Don't we have this on LP?" I answered, "Yes." She followed up with, "Well let's listen to the LP." End of story.

Frank Huber's picture

I've donated all my LPs (and cassettes) to various libraries.

erich's picture

I havn't even heard a good LP but then again I never tried.

Scott Slotterbeck's picture

My analog collection is in excellent shape, and either cannot be duplicated, or it's too expensive to do so.

Tom Selnau's picture

Actually, 99.9% CD. The 0.1% is for when I long for a little pop and hiss. Call me radical.

Ron Renlapp's picture

CDs sound almost as good as LPs, but I have many more LPs than CDs!

Thad Aerts's picture

Unfortunately, not all releases are done so on vinyl, therefor there is CD's being played in my house- but this is beyond my control.

Graeme Nattress's picture

I only play CD's when I'm in the bath or don't have the LP. CD's still give me headaches or sound boring.

Kristj's picture

I have never heard CD sound that matched LP in quality, soundstage, and natural dynamics.

Eric Jansen's picture

No matter how you cut it, you can't beat a CD for convenience; just drop it in and hit Play. No cleaning and flipping it over halfway thru. But . . . some music that I have on both CD and LP I enjoy much more on LP. It also depends on what gems I have found for 50 cents or so at a garage sale! I would never sell off my LPs, but I have done very well digging thru boxes at garage sales.

kcso's picture

If anybody out there has LPs they want to get rid of, give them to me!!

Charles Purvis Kelly, Jr.'s picture

It's the CD 100% of the time without a doubt. My reasons are threefold. (1). I don't have a turntable or LPs to play on them. (2). I have tapes, but the sound quality suffers over time. (3). I also have FM, but FM isn't last answer in sound quality, but occasionally, it serves its purpose. But it's there when I want relax but listen to music. I think that about sums it up..

Sonic Bob's picture

I've have CDs 15 years old or older, and they still play---without snaps, crackles, or pops. And, I don't have to struggle with a tonearm equipped with a diamond-tipped cutting tool. Convenience won out early with this pre-slacking slacker.

Steven Wilshire's picture

Analog 12" LPs made of heavy 180gm vinyl and recorded at 45rpm are the ultimate in sound. They reproduce real music. The LPs themselves are collectibles. I wish Stereophile would review a different turntable, tonearm, cartridge, phono preamp, and record cleaner in each issue.

Harvey Kaye's picture

As a recent audiophile CDs are the more common media.

Andy (UK)'s picture

CD replay still seems like there's a billion microscopic holes in it that somehow become filled in when you return to the black disc.

Frank Holderfield's picture

Although I personally prefer the warmth and intimacy of vinyl, the simplicity of a cd usually is a deciding factor for me. It takes alot more time whenever I play records-you have to clean the stylus, clean the record on the nitty gritty, and then zap it with the zerostat. Then you can't wander off too far as you will have to pick up the needle at the conclusion of each side.Before children this was not a problem. Unfortunately, now I am governed more by convenience and have to sacrifice sound. But on the weekends the vinyl rules for at least a couple of hours-that is until the kids awaken.

Erik Leideman's picture

I used to play 1% LP and 99% CD, but recently I bought a new analog player, the Nottingham Analogue Spacedeck. This was an enormous improvement over my old Systemdek player. It is not quite the equal of my Meridian 200 transport and Bremen License No.1 DAC combo, but it comes very close for half the money. So now it is 20% LP, 80% CD. But this is mainly because it is more convenient to play CDs than LPs.

Nicholas Wybolt's picture

While I enjoy LPs a whole lot more, it's typically more convenient to toss aluminum in the bit bucket. However, when I've got the time to enjoy a single malt, there's nothing like vinyl.

Mark Grabow's picture

LP's are for people with quarter million dollar sound systems. In the real worls of $2000 sound systems CD's sound better. On the other hand if you are Donald Trump and have flawless vinal then LP's are the choice (if you can get past the needle noise.

Craig Copeland's picture

The difference between 'LP sound' and 'CD sound', at least on my equipment does not justify in my mind the effort required to keep the LPs clean and dust free. CDs are pretty much forever without a lot of hassel. Proper LP maintainence is a way of life in itself which is not for me.

Michael Crespo's picture

If I didn't have so many CDs, the percentage of vinyl listening would be higher. My goal is to ultimately eradicate all my CDs by replacing them with the vinyl versions. By 2005, I would like 100% LPs and 0% CDs.

Clay S.'s picture

As a poor 20-year-old college student, I can only afford to have CDs. I'm relatively new to stereophilia and have not compared two equivalent analog and digital systems, so I am not sure on my stance between the two.

Mike Molinaro's picture

When it's time to listen for the sake of listening, it's LP's by a wide margin. Even with the clicks, pops and having to flip the disc every 25 minutes or so, it is just a more pleasureable experience to listen to vinyl.

Anonymous's picture

30% cd 40% 24/96 dvd 30% lp

norm walker's picture

i only seem to have the cd's on to warm up the system

Greg Oen's picture

I'll probably get beat up for this, but I think LPs aren't worth the effort.