Information from snap, crackle and pop?

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Chuck Glider
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Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by Chuck Glider » 22 Jan 2019 00:54

I bought some secondhand records recently. They looked clean. When I played them, I heard a sharp crackling noise in the lead-in groove and early part of the first track and on some gaps between tracks. It made me wonder whether this was an artefact of the type of clean that the seller had done. I did a hand soap and water clean using microfiber cloths and most of the sharp crackle disappeared. More generally it got me thinking:

--What distinctive types of surface noise are there?
--Can you tell what kind of defect or dirt you're dealing with from the noise that you hear?

This sharp crackling was distinctive but I don't know exactly what it was caused by. Clearly a scratch makes a certain kind of pop noise. Then there a softer hiss, which I believe is usually from surface dust. And when a clump of fluff builds on the stylus, there's a tell tale distortion sound, calling out for the carbon fibre needle brush.

Can we pool our collective experiences and knowledge of noise types and what they mean? (The Art of Noise, if you like!!)

VinyldechezPierre
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Re: Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by VinyldechezPierre » 24 Jan 2019 17:11

Interesting idea but I doubt I could be very helpful. To me, a noise is a noise is a noise.

Recently had one I could not get rid of despite multiple cleanings of the area. Finally put it under a magnifying glass and figured out it was a bubble in the vinyl. Threw it out. But I could not, for the life of me, tell you what the sound was like.

Two thoughts though: 1/ if you only have one TT with a good cartridge, wash all records BEFORE playing them. 2/ I've never had a clump of fluff on a stylus. You need to start cleaning all records before playing them. Each and every time.

Chuck Glider
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Re: Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by Chuck Glider » 25 Jan 2019 11:29

You're right. I haven't had a clump of fluff on the stylus for many years. Experience a long time ago made me change practice back then. I don't think a noise is a noise is a noise. Each noise is caused by the stylus impacting the dirt or defect. The question I'm asking is how much can one's ear hear the differences. Do certain defects have particular sounds, etc?

I believe that the sharp crackling was down to the seller using glass cleaner on the record! :roll:

noisefreq
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Re: Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by noisefreq » 03 Feb 2019 20:17

I've had this problem.
Record shops use whatever is cheapest and easiest to get the product in the racks.
I'd much rather they leave the records in the condition they recieve them and have said so to several shop clerks but to no avail.
Sometimes I have to clean them several times to get rid of the "cleaner" from the bottom of the groove.
The dried slurry this cleaner and dirt form is many times more difficult to remove than the years of dirt and water from the use of a Discwasher or similar.

I recently had an otherwise mint record with a skip on the lead in groove.
I soaked the area with cleaning solution and after a minute, I went back and forth with a soft carbon fiber stylus brush several times.
Vacuumed and tested...skip was gone, perfect.
If no scratch is detected this often can help a skip on a record.
Wether it's a spot of glue or debris from the manufacturing process its worth a try.

ripblade
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Re: Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by ripblade » 09 Feb 2019 23:43

I know that the sharper the crack the younger it is and can possibly be cleaned. Dull sounding pops and clicks are old and probably permanent.

T68
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Re: Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by T68 » 18 Feb 2019 12:51

I think OP is onto something.
For a vinyl newbie like me it can be hard to hear differences between different types of unwanted noise.
I know it might be an unrealistic dream, but wouldn't it be really helpful and useful with a reference library /database of some sort over all the bad noises with sound samples and information about how to address them?!

... this from a guy who still cannot tell differences between dust, static and scratches.

...not to mention wow, rumble, resonances, sibilance, buzz, hum, feedback and all the rest :-)

Mark N S
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Re: Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by Mark N S » 22 Feb 2019 22:45

Correct cartridge and tonearm setup can significantly improve noise. I recently upgrade from a Rega fixed arm to a Kuzma Stogi univipot. The arm is adjustable in all planes, SRA, azumuth etc. Setting it up is an art but when you hit the sweet spot all previous noise that was heard using the Rega disappears. If I deliberately miss align the unipivot the noise returns. Other than obvious scratches what I thought were damaged records now sound almost as new.
One other thing that is often overlooked with Vinyl is the coefficient of drag with relation to the stylus, this has a significant affect on groove noise. Good quality enzyme cleaning solutions reduce this coefficient and the noise floor drops significantly. Alcohol cleaners have the opposite affect and increase the drag..

Legrace
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Re: Information from snap, crackle and pop?

Post by Legrace » 14 Mar 2019 15:41

Mark N S wrote:
22 Feb 2019 22:45
Correct cartridge and tonearm setup can significantly improve noise. I recently upgrade from a Rega fixed arm to a Kuzma Stogi univipot. The arm is adjustable in all planes, SRA, azumuth etc. Setting it up is an art but when you hit the sweet spot all previous noise that was heard using the Rega disappears. If I deliberately miss align the unipivot the noise returns. Other than obvious scratches what I thought were damaged records now sound almost as new.
One other thing that is often overlooked with Vinyl is the coefficient of drag with relation to the stylus, this has a significant affect on groove noise. Good quality enzyme cleaning solutions reduce this coefficient and the noise floor drops significantly. Alcohol cleaners have the opposite affect and increase the drag..
Key with alcohol is adequate dilution. My personal preference however has also shifted to enzyme based solution.

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