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<br>Can This Machine Turn YOUR Records into Hot Stampers?</p>




Can This Machine Turn YOUR Records into Hot Stampers?


The short answer is of course not. (Maybe "you wish" might be more to the point, but there's no need to rub it in so we won't even go there.)

A bad record is a bad record no matter how clean it is. Most record collections are swimming in mediocre-at-best LPs (especially collections made up of audiophile pressings) and no machine can fix bad mastering from bad tapes pressed on bad vinyl, or any combination thereof.

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But that's not the point. What it can do is help you find the Hot Stampers sitting in your own collection by getting every LP you own to sound its best. If you own lots of records, you have to own some Hot Stampers. The law of averages is on your side here; let it work for you.

But which ones? Ah, there's the rub. You'll never know until you get them clean.

Let's be clear: Hot Stamper LPs live and die by the quality of the machine and fluids that are used to clean them. The advent of these cleaning technologies has been one of the most, if not THE most important Revolutions in Audio to come along in the last ten years.

Every Hot Stamper record you see on the site has been cleaned on this machine. It can't make a bad record into a good one, but it sure can help reveal which pressings have potential and which ones don't. It then becomes our job to sort out which copies have the magic in their grooves, what kind of magic they have, and precisely how much. (After you've done a few hundred of these shootouts it becomes surprisingly easy. It also helps to have been optimizing your playback system for thirty years.)



The RCM machine pictured above has been quite a godsend to those of us who devote our days to playing records. Not only does it make them quieter than any machine we have ever tried, it actually makes them SOUND BETTER. It's true! Any record cleaned on this machine, no matter what machine it has been cleaned on before, will sound noticeably better than it did. Moreover, the improvement is not subtle. It's actually quite dramatic. We heard the biggest improvements in the area of midrange transparency, frequency extension at both ends, and freedom from hash and grain.

The Beatles -- Always a Tough Test

Playing early Beatles records, which, of all the records we regularly encounter, are some of the hardest to reproduce, was nothing short of revelatory after being cleaned with the Odyssey. So much of what holds these records back is not mastering or pressing or problems with the recording -- it's getting the damn vinyl clean. (As well as having high enough quality playback to stop adding to the inherent limitations of the recordings.)

Know why you never hear Beatles records playing in stereo stores or audio shows? (Love doesn't count, sorry. Don't be ridiculous.)

Because they are TOO DAMN HARD to reproduce. You have to have seriously tweaked, top-quality, correct-sounding equipment -- and just the right pressings, natch -- to get The Beatles' music to sound right, and that's just not the kind of stuff they have at stereo stores and audio shows. (Don't get me started.)

However, you may have noticed that we sell tons of Beatles Hot Stamper pressings. We have the stereo that can play them, we have the technology to clean them, and we know just how good the best pressings can sound. The result? Regular listings for Beatles Hot Stampers, one practically every month.

A True Pass/Fail Test for Equipment

I've been saying for years that an audiophile system that can't play Beatles records is a system that has failed a fundamentally important test of musicality. Everyone knows what The Beatles sound like; we've been hearing their music our whole lives. We know what kind of energy these songs have. What kind of intimacy. What kind of power. When all or most of those qualities are missing from the sound coming out of the speakers, what can we do but admit that something is very very wrong.

I've heard an awful lot of audiophile stereos that can play audiophile records all day long just fine, but when it comes to The Beatles they quickly fall apart, and badly. Embarrassingly badly. Super Detailed may be fine for an echo-drenched Patricia Barber record but it sure won't cut it with The Beatles. Of course the owners of these wacky systems soon start pointing fingers at the recordings themselves, but we at Better Records -- and our Hot Stamper customers -- know better. You can blame the messenger as much as you want; it's a natural human tendency, I do it myself on occasion. But that sure won't help you get your stereo working right, now will it?

The Beatles albums are the ultimate Audiophile Wake Up call. It's the reason practically no equipment reviewers in the world have ever used recordings by The Beatles when making their judgments. Most audiophile systems -- regardless of price -- just can't hack it.

The reviewers and the magazines they write for don't want you to know that, but that doesn't make it any less true.

You Can Do It -- Here's How

Be that as it may, you can still make a HUGE improvement to the sound of your analog playback system without upgrading a single audio component.

It's simple: Walker Enzyme Fluids and this machine will make your records sound dramatically better, regardless of how they were cleaned before.

Next use Walker's Talisman on your wires, cables and LPs to get rid of the magnetic buildup; hear how open and transparent your system becomes after just a minute or two of demagnitization.

Upon placing a pair of Hallographs behind the speakers to deal with the nasty room reflections that plague us all, you may find your stereo sounding so much better than ever before that you can hardly bring yourself to believe it. Oh, it's true all right. And you did it without changing a single component!

Disc Doctor and Walker Audio Prelude are the only fluids we recommend. If you're serious about your records, you need one of these two machines and one of these two fluids.

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