If you are looking for a new record player this New Year, chances are you aren’t the only one. According to the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), there has been a resurgence of interest in vinyl records in the past year — vinyl sales increased by 52 percent from 2014 to 2015, resulting in $221.8 million in revenue.
This news isn’t too surprising. According to a Nielsen study, vinyl album sales in the U.S. have grown by 260 percent since 2009, and it doesn’t look like this trend is slowing down any time soon.
The chart below shows the steady increase of vinyl records’ popularity and sales.
Why Vinyl Records are on High Demand
Quality of sound is a significant factor when it comes to the music listening experience. So given that vinyl records are an analog sound storage medium, it’s not surprising that they are so popular among audiophiles and music fans.
For those who aren’t familiar with the term, analog refers to audio that is recorded using methods that replicate the original sound waves. The second type of recording is digital audio — like MP3s or CDs — which is recorded by taking samples of the original sound wave at a specific rate. Therefore, listening to your favorite song on a vinyl record is far more fulfilling than from your typical CD.
Why Vinyl Fans are Excited About the New Sony Turntable
Among the featured products at the 2016 Consumer Electronics Show (CES) was the new Sony turntable FY16 PS-HX500 model, created for music lovers who want to enjoy vinyl records in their original analog sound quality.
With the new Sony turntable, users can enjoy their favorite vinyl records in their original analog sound quality by simply connecting the PS-HX500 to their stereo system. Audiophiles and music fans can also record vinyl records in High-Resolution Audio quality formats such as Direct-Stream Digital (DSD), using the free “High-Res Audio Recorder” PC application. By recording vinyl records in High-Res Audio, users can continue to enjoy the unique sound of their favorite vinyl records. In addition, music fans can listen to their favorite songs on a variety of High-Resolution Audio devices, including on the go with their Walkman®.
Key Features of the New Sony Turntable:
High-Res Ripping: Enjoy recorded music files in other High-Res Audio players with the native DSD AD converter
Easy to Use: Newly developed “High-Res Audio Recorder” free application makes it easy to record and edit vinyl records
High Quality: Includes newly developed Sony original arm and sound tuning
Clearly “Ultimate Hi-Res” analog records are once again in the limelight, and this turntable enables users to easily enjoy their favorite records in super sound quality.
Why Sony Chose Direct-Stream Digital for the PS-HX500
The short answer: DSD is said to have the closest digital file samples to the original analog source.
Direct-Stream Digital uses pulse-density modulation encoding to store audio signals on digital storage media. The sampling rate for this technology is either 2.8224 MHz or 5.6448 MHz, which translates to 64 times or 128 times that for CD Audio sampling.
With CD format, analog waveforms are sampled at 44,100 times per second with a bit depth of 16 digits. With DSD format, the bit depth changes according to the waveform amplitude. So, when the signal is high, the bit depth is high, and when the signal is low, the bit depth is low.
The FY16 PS-HX500 will allow you to preserve the analog sound of vinyl records so you can easily enjoy your favorite songs in High-Resolution Audio quality. For all the vinyl fans out there searching for the best new turntable of 2016, look no further.