It does bother me on classical music, but then again my classical LPs are noiseless anyway. It is the one near guarantee in used record buying - classical albums tend to be near pristine. I liked the SC2 so I could eliminate several steps in putting some vinyl on a jump drive or what have you and eliminating extra noise such as clicks, ticks Planet (Somersault Version) - The Sugarcubes - Planet (Vinyl) pops were and added bonus. I normally try to do that manually through Audicity, but it is far from perfect as I am only willing to filter so far so as to not lose too much.
I must say though that the work the guys making the devices put into it is tremendous! On top of that they keep working at it perfecting it more and more and providing good support updates and such, so you do need to pay folks well who are willing to go to such lengths. So even though I am well priced out of the SC units now, I can see both sides of the street and have to give credit where it is due.
The price increase pretty much pushes both out of the running for me, sadly. At this point it's less expensive for me to just buy a couple more copies to find a record that is clean. A buddy of mine was in on the Kickstarter deal and got it at a far lower price. While it's not a must-have for me, this is yet another time when I'm kicking myself for not trusting my instinct Dan Eakins description of Sweet Vinyl's algorithms sounds in part like what I remember of the Dolby Digital feature on my old cassette deck.
I never liked DD much -- at least in my modestly priced deck, it seemed to kill the treble pretty well too. If you remember the sound of DD on cassette decks, how would you compare its effect to Sweet Vinyl? I listened to sweet vinyl today at Axpona the difference was stunning ; you read Michaels review. If your a skeptic, fine. Maybe give it a sample in person before comparing it to cassettes. Do you really want to use DD on cassettes as a comparison without even hearing for yourself?
Do yourself a favor and sample it in person. You will bet happy you took my advice. Good luck. Just thought we would jump in and provide a little feedback from the team here at SweetVinyl. First thanks to Michael for spending the time and putting the SC-1 through the paces on his amazing system and all the effort he has put into covering our project over the last several years.
On the pricing front, we were left in a dilemma as we believe the basic systems should be less than we are at right now for the Planet (Somersault Version) - The Sugarcubes - Planet (Vinyl) and SC-2, inline with our original pricing model. However digitizing analog in the best systems with little to no perceptible difference comes at a price and the cost of the hardware in the system crept up as we refined the design forcing us to raise the list price.
As a result our first products can sit in a system like Michael's and improve the experience. We did offer very attractive pricing to anyone who came to visit us by adding them to our email list and inviting them to the Indiegogo campaign. As there is still a need for a more affordable design point we started working on some stripped down models that will have less hardware features Planet (Somersault Version) - The Sugarcubes - Planet (Vinyl) a step down in the finish of the enclosures which will improve the list price to be at or better than our initial targets.
We have a lot of work to get the SC-2 out of Beta and into production with track splitting and meta-data tagging working on the units in the field - as well as other software updates to the systems as we make improvements and add features.
If you are at Axpona, stop by and say hi, we will be on the 6th floor and we have a special demo we will be showing of surface noise reduction on 78 vinyl running on a SugarCube! I have been dreaming about getting an SC-2 ever since I saw my first demo.
I'd go for an SC-1, but I can do much more with the SC-2 as I am not bothered too much by the occasional tick and click and one pop won't send me running out of the room either.
Of course, really bad records will, but none of mine are that bad, Planet (Somersault Version) - The Sugarcubes - Planet (Vinyl), so far.
Unfortunately, both units will remain out of my reach, but I think they are a fantastic product. I wish Michael was there with me at the time, but he said I did good when I told him later.
I am pleased to hear that you are working on a more affordable unit though as that can only help! You are right about the cost of materials and such, but I also consider the labor that goes into the product.
Not just building the units, but the research and development to make it and continually improve it, which I fear will never end.
It is just the nature of the beast. The world in which you work for this product is constantly changing, so it is all you can do just to keep up. So yes, keep going! I look forward to seeing the less expensive version when it comes around, not to mention anything else you come up with. I have one of those, and I have not found anything else at any price to exceed its performance on the widest variety of phonographic material.
I am wondering if the Sugar Cube has any similar problem with low brasses or musical transients? A regular, "old" classical music concert goer here in New York City, it seems to me that there are more younger people at the concerts I attend than there were when I sat in the balcony in Carnegie Hall listening to Leopold Stokowski conduct the American Symphony Orchestra.
Of course, my evidence is purely anecdotal as is yours, Michael, If your looking for a demographic to single out for a laugh, try the wives an girlfriends, young and old, who having been dragged to concerts kill time by flipping the pages of their programs collectively creating an amisical racket.
Since receiving mine a year after placing the order I've played loads of records through the SC-2 and find it to be an indispensable part of my system. I haven't done much recording yet, but I look forward to the full implementation of the software before I'll really spend much time doing so.
What recording I have done has left me impressed. There have been a few bumps with the software, however recent updates seem to have really smoothed out the experience of using the phone app as a controller, and they kindly sent me a new wi-fi dongle as I was having trouble connecting with the original one, the new one has worked right every time.
Those interested in further discussion of the SC-2 can look for my thread over on the Steve Hoffman forum where I have several recorded samples posted throughout the thread. After having the SC-1 for over 7 months now, let me tell you how indispensable this unit is!
When Michael uses words like "miracle" in a write-up, you know he must be impressed; I have found him to be one who is not prone to exaggeration over the years. It is truly a remarkable product. I have played many hundreds of lps now, testing everything from the new and the mildly clicky, the click and pop-ridden, to the "this looks too damaged to play". The SugarCube not only makes them all listenable, but, unlike Michael and his trained ears, I cannot discern the slightest difference in sound dynamics when the unit is on or on bypass.
All it does is remove clicks, leaving the exact sonic signature and decibel level behind. A few weeks ago, I journeyed to my used record store that had a 5 buck copy of Friends, by The Beach Boys. Five bucks because 'loved up' is far too kind as a description of the scratchfest that is the vinyl surface.
Bought it, cleaned it, played it without the SC Turned on the SugarCube I kid you not. It has transformed my vinyl listening experiences. Yes, it's like I have a mint copy of everything. So we rely on cds on Document, Yazoo, or Third Man. Many of these records, American treasures all, exist only in one or two copies collected by intrepid collectors in the s. Yesterday at AXPONA I asked the designers if the algorithm would work with these cds, through a regular cd player, and make some of these nearly unlistenable recordings sound good again.
They assured me that it would. My question is: has anybody tried this yet? If this works it would, I imagine, revolutionize the reissue business and, hopefully, bring new listeners to this wonderful music who's enjoyment has thus far been, shall we say, challenging. Michael, curious why you say that. I am a beta tester and after sending a comment about bypassing the unit using the tape monitor button on my Nait 3R remote, Dan replied, "By going in out of tape monitor you may be hearing that path in the electronics of your system — if you want to further test transparency we encourage you to put it inline after a phono stage and use our bypass.
Hi Michael Can you comment on the audio signal play backed through the SC-1 compared to the playback directly through your preamp. In my setup I am using the tape loop in on an Aesthetix calypso. So basically your setup in the review and mine bypass the need to use the bypass on the SC-1 moreover can you compare the two individual playback signals from your record. The sound of my records when played without the the tape loop SC-1 engaged is far superior in every aspect in playback compared to when the signal is passed through the tape loop tothe SC This comparison in playback has yet to be written about and should be since such an unwelcoming difference exists between the two signal paths at least in my system.
Lastly I will note that only the power cord to the power brick is stock and the tape loop interconnects are not to the same caliber as others that are used in this signal path. I cannot believe at this point what I am experiencing in playback through the tape loop is caused by the level of interconnects and the power cord Please post a comment if you will on what you hear when comparing the two methods of signal playback on your setup.
I sadly plan at this point on sending my unit back for a refund based on my experience. I use a software tool called "Click Repair" that is quite cheap and works like magic. I imagine it is very similar to what this unit does. You can listen to the original signal, the processed signal, or what it is removing so you can adjust the aggressiveness without removing music. If I get a rare LP that is too noisy for me to enjoy, I digitize it and use this tool. You could use it in real time with a good quality USB audio interface and a PC and it would probably work nearly as well but be a lot clunkier.
Nice to see someone come out with a convenient box to do this. To the commenter above. If you like the unprocessed sound better, you don't really have a noisy record. Does this also help lessen vinyl surface noise? I have some records that I love that really don't have many pops but have some distracting surface noise.
Would love to be able to decrease that. Fact is the end product is FLAWLESS and the mere fact the music ends up on analog format a second time around, it automatically injects that extra touch of warmth or the small portion you imagined you lost during the digitalization process except you really didn't - and if you did - it isn't noticeable to If you don't like it, just send it back for a full refund. Check out thousands of independent 5 star reviews about us We're always on the phone to answer questions and help with any orders, Monday through Saturday.
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