Dr. AIX

Mark Waldrep, aka Dr. AIX, has been producing and engineering music for over 40 years. He learned electronics as a teenager from his HAM radio father while learning to play the guitar. Mark received the first doctorate in music composition from UCLA in 1986 for a "binaural" electronic music composition. Other advanced degrees include an MS in computer science, an MFA/MA in music, BM in music and a BA in art. As an engineer and producer, Mark has worked on projects for the Rolling Stones, 311, Tool, KISS, Blink 182, Blues Traveler, Britney Spears, the San Francisco Symphony, The Dover Quartet, Willie Nelson, Paul Williams, The Allman Brothers, Bad Company and many more. Dr. Waldrep has been an innovator when it comes to multimedia and music. He created the first enhanced CDs in the 90s, the first DVD-Videos released in the U.S., the first web-connected DVD, the first DVD-Audio title, the first music Blu-ray disc and the first 3D Music Album. Additionally, he launched the first High Definition Music Download site in 2007 called iTrax.com. A frequency speaker at audio events, author of numerous articles, Dr. Waldrep is currently writing a book on the production and reproduction of high-end music called, "High-End Audio: A Practical Guide to Production and Playback". The book should be completed in the fall of 2013.

15 thoughts on “Vinyl LPs Sales Increase Near 40%

  • July 14, 2014 at 4:30 pm
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    Do you have numbers for high-resolution audio sales? If so, please share the citation. I’ve been looking all over for those.

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    • July 14, 2014 at 5:30 pm
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      Andrea…unfortunately the information I have is not something that I can publish. All I can say is that the dollar amounts for high-resolution digital downloads is larger than the sales of new vinyl LPs. Sorry.

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  • July 14, 2014 at 4:35 pm
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    Mark;
    I, too, have a copy of “Under An Indigo Sky” but, unlike you, I also have an analog system. Perhaps it is just me trying to rationallize my “investmet” in vinyl and related hardware, but I find Laurence Juber’s offering warmer and very emotional. I have not done any A/B comps so I cannot really comment on how it sounds digitally.
    I think the report on vinyl sales is probably an attempt to put as positive a spin on the vinyl industry as possible. The prices currently being charged, especiallly 180 or 200 gram pressings is going to put a very low ceiling on future sales.
    I really enjoy your recent Axpona offerings, both Jax and Chicago, and I appreciate what you are trying to do to help establish some kind of standarization to HD audio, but I do not see subscribing to downloads exclusively.
    Thanks for all you do.

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    • July 14, 2014 at 5:30 pm
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      Actually, I would love to hear LJ’s album on vinyl LP.

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  • July 14, 2014 at 4:37 pm
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    Hi Mark, I posted some time ago that our bigest music retail outlet here in Australia has a rapidly expanding vinyl section. So much so, that the Bluray section has been punted out of the way in order to make more room. The other staggering aspect to this is the cost of the discs. $50 is not uncommon for a single disc and “Beatles” albums recorded fifty years ago are $45.
    We are not being concidered where quality is concerned, merely taken as an easy touch.
    Whilst on that subject, I visited the “2L” website with the view of buying some of their fabulous recordings. I was amazed to see that the Bluray downloads were exactly the same price as the physical discs. Are they serious?

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    • July 14, 2014 at 5:32 pm
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      It’s expensive to make a recording…not matter which way you cut it. I don’t have a problem with downloads costing about the same as discs. The cost of replication and printing is not that much by comparison to creating the files in the first place.

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      • July 15, 2014 at 3:25 am
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        Really? I find this staggering. I would have thought the cost of making cds and other optical discs would be quite significant and another reason for the industry to push downloads.
        If you were to master one of your tracks for vinyl what, out of interest, would be the adjustments necessary apart from the Riaa curve that is. You’ve mentioned in the past the process by which the bass would have to be summed . How is this achieved and below what frequency is this normally done.

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        • July 15, 2014 at 8:10 am
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          Bob the cost of manufacturing a physical optical disc is less than $.20 for CDs to $.40 for Blu-ray discs. That’s not the reason for high costs…of course, it does cost much more than downloads but it’s not crazy more.

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  • July 14, 2014 at 5:12 pm
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    The scary thing about some of the “new” people who buy vinyl is that they like the pops, clicks and audible distortion. To those, it’s Hula Hoop!

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  • July 15, 2014 at 9:45 am
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    Mark, your perception is correct, and your analysis. While turntable sales have jumped way up and there is a mini-trend for release on vinyl, the actual percentage numbers are not truly significant, EXCEPT that they do o indicate a willing market for better sound. At the recent Newport T.H.E. show I attended, every demonstration I saw or heard was either vinyl or hi-res; they can go together just fine in a system today, that’s part of the beauty of our times. The other point worth making you inferred but did not make: While CD % are down, more CDs were sold in the world last year than in any previous. Last bit, of the 6 major music consuming countries, the U.S. is the only one wherein downloads exceed the sales of physical media. In Japan, it’s 6 to 1 the other way!

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    • July 15, 2014 at 10:14 am
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      You’re right CDs are still a very big deal in the world at large…and will remain so for a long time.

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  • July 15, 2014 at 10:48 am
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    From my stance both as a music junkie and high-end vendor, CD has been unfairly maligned. Despite the visual disparity evidenced on your ‘audio space’ chart, when the full signal capacity within 16/44 is used, a very satisfying listen can be had. Most folks simply have not progressed in player quality. After their early one broke, they probably started using the dvd player which had shown up by then. That alone effectively killed much interest in listening to CD. Then, just as CD matured around 2000, The I-Pod came along and stole the headlines which could have read ” CD grows up.” Instead it said ,”Music goes down.” CD could be re-promoted as ‘the Mother of hi-res.’ Bottom line, all physical media, especially sizeable collections in folks’ homes should be recognized as an investment that should be kept up. In the last number of years, I have begun many a system upgrade with a better source when it would have been easier to sell new loudspeakers.CD IS NOT DEAD, thank you Mark.

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    • July 17, 2014 at 11:56 am
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      I agree and have stated more than once that CD-Audio is very hard to best when it comes to audio fidelity. It lacks surround but that’s another topic. As you know, I would never refer to it as the “Mother of Hi-Res” because it firmly establishes the “standard-resolution” category. If we could get uncompressed Redbook audio fidelity across the board, it would be a great thing.

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  • July 20, 2014 at 11:00 am
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    I gave my turntable and vinyl albums away to my sister in 1986 and never looked back. Now I wish I kept them and sold them for great profit to nostalgists and hipsters.

    There’s lies, damn lies, and there’s statistics. (and this 40% increase is album sales is one of them :))

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    • July 20, 2014 at 11:55 am
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      Thanks Sean for the comment. I actually still have a chosen few LPs but no turntable.

      Reply

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