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<br>Yes - Fragile <p>British Band, British Pressing... Right?</p>




Yes - Fragile

British Band, British Pressing... Right?


Not Really. It’s just another Record Myth.

Some of you may remember that back in the '90s (and even into the 2000s, gulp) we preferred the sound on the British original pressings for the most famous Yes albums, Fragile among them.

There's no way around it, folks: We Was Wrong. While the Brit copies can have some very nice qualities, they just can't compete with the best domestic pressings of Fragile.

More Yes / More Fragile


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No British (Plum and Orange label) original of Fragile we played in our shootout [back in 2006 or 2007, not sure exactly] rated above a solid A for either side. Based on what we heard in our shootout, we feel VERY confident that the master tapes for this album were in America when this record was mastered. There is NO WAY this record is not cut from the master tape. Dubs just don't sound like that.

If you are still under the impression that British bands sound best on British vinyl, our Hot Stamper domestic pressings will disabuse you of that notion in short order.

What It's Not About

Once again folks, it's not about the label, it's not about the country of origin, it's not about original vs. reissue -- it's about the sound of the record on the turntable, and the only way to know which are the best sounding pressings is to clean 'em and play 'em. It's a time-consuming process that most audiophiles clearly don't have time for. You may be able to save time by buying only, to take just one example, British Led Zeppelin records, but that's a surefire way to miss out on some incredibly good sounding Zep LPs. Some of the killer copies are British, but most are not, and many of the British pressings are hopelessly bad. British band, British pressing is going to get you into a lot of trouble when it comes to Zep, of that you can be sure. Check out some of our Hot Stamper commentaries and see how many of the Best Sounding Led Zeppelin LPs are British. In our experience, not that many.

We Have the Technology

Fortunately we have the staff it takes to do the job right. We play every pressing we can get our hands on, regardless of country of manufacture, how original it is, the label its on -- any and all such nonsense that so often leads the serious record lover and audiophile down the garden path.

We've already found the Hot Stampers that are just too difficult for most people to find on their own, and, as luck would have it, hundreds of them are sitting on our site as we speak, just waiting for a good home. Yours perhaps?


Further Reading

We have a number of entries in our new Import Versus Domestic series, in which we debunk the conventional wisdom concerning which country's records are the best sounding for specific artists and titles.

Here are some commentaries on a subject near and dear to all of us, namely Record Collecting.

The entries linked here may help you gain a better understanding of the issues surrounding Hot Stampers.

And finally we'll throw in this old warhorse discussing How to Become an Expert Listener, subtitled Hard Work and Challenges Can Really Pay Off.

Because in audio, much like the rest of life, hard work and challenges really do pay off.

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