Like most DJs I consider myself an audiophile. I love collecting and listening to rare and odd tracks. I enjoy hitting the flea markets and looking for old Surf guitar, rockabilly, old school 80’s hip hop (the good stuff) and classic rock albums. I remember my father learning to play the lead guitar part to all the Venture’s albums while teaching me the rhythm section. He did this by ear, note by note playing each track of the albums over and over again on our 1970’s fake wood grain cabinet Hi-Fi system. Nothing sounded better.
We still have all those old original albums. I try not to touch them though. I know how hard they are to replace. Eventually I bought all my favorite Surf Guitar albums on compact disc. Truth is that the music just doesn’t sound the same. Converting those warm analog tones to ones and zeros just seems sacrilegious. This music was created by real musicians jamming together for hours without the help of auto tune or Ableton Live. This is a major reason why vinyl itself is making a big come back. I’m sure all the turntable DJs in the world are collectively saying”we told you so”.
So do you rush out to buy new turntables and put away your laptops? How can you convert and add the smooth sounds of vinyl tracks to your digital library? Sony’s new PS-HX500 turntable converter is a great place to start. Launched at the CES show in Vegas this past January and hitting the market this May, this hot new must have converts vinyl to Hi-res audio tracks via USB to your PC and Sony’s proprietary software. There have been many converters on the market previously, but the Sony PS-HX500 claims to be on a whole other level.
The unit has an MDF shell, high quality belt drive, rubber feet, aluminum platter, .20 gauge slip mat and glass resin embedded into the circuit board to insure the best quality sound transfer. The PS-HX500 plays 331/3 and 45 RPM records. The software allows you to separate the tracks as you record and categorize them. Once the tracks are recorded and analyzed it is fairly easy to add them to your digital library and play them through your DJ software.
The $599 retail price isn’t cheap, but compared to the price of all those shiny lights we buy (that are sitting on a warehouse shelf) it’s a good investment for a true audiophile. Check out this interview with Eric Kingdon, the senior technical marketing manager for Sony Europe. He breaks down the specs and gets to the nitty-gritty of the PS-HX500.
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