Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by DigMyGroove, Nov 12, 2017.
They. Have. Jumped!
I checked out the samples posted at the CEDAR listing you linked too, not impressive at all. The SugarCube actually works, the CEDAR not so much. When I have time this coming weekend I'll make some comparison recordings and post them.
Yes, because those do create the clicks and pops. As I mentioned, my SC-1 will not completely eliminate groove damage that is buried inside the groove. But it gets rid of the scratch noise, and even dust noise.
It is awesome.
The flaw in this logic is that new algorithms as well as ADC and DSP are always being designed. Advancements in processor speed and DSP processing abilities may make these new products surpass the stuff that's previously been used. I look forward to hearing this device and will make my judgement when I have listened to it for a few days in my own listening room. I hope that they'll sell this very exciting new product through dealers that will allow one to audition these and return it if it's not acceptable.
JohnO, I can appreciate your skepticism, I really can. I’ll tell you personally: I’ve used my SC-1 for 9 weeks now...there is absolutely no sonic degradation. I have played over a hundred albums, and a ton of 45s. I’ve auditioned it for family and friends...they can’t believe it. But it’s not some unexplainable weird-science, nor is it any confirmation bias thing, either. It’s good science, lovely software engineering, and a solidly built component. I have a ton of used lps that I am now enjoying without background interference, and that is a pleasure.
It’s truly what some of us have been waiting for.
I’ll probably get around to it sometime, but you can go to analogueplanet.com and do a search for the SugarCube and watch one of these filmed by Michael Fremer.
There should be a dial for attitude adjustment.
There is also the bozo list.
Anybody remember the SAE 5000 Impulse Noise Reduction System? I have one. It kinda works. It can filter out minor ticks and clicks, but pops punch holes in the audio, and if you turn it up too high, it starts removing the intentional impulses in the music.
I would buy one.
OK folks, here at last is a recorded sample of the SugarCube SC-2 in action along with a recording of the un-repaired audio. Each sample of the Door's "The End" is just over 3 minutes long, I've provided unedited FLAC files direct off the thumb drive to which the SC-2 recorded them. I set the click repair level to 6, one higher than the default 5 since this is a particularly noisy pressing.
The G+/VG pressing is from 1967: The Doors - The Doors
The record was played on a circa 1979 Kenwood D-5070 turntable with an Audio Technica AT33EV MC cartridge out to a Vincent Pho-8 phono stage and on to the SugarCube SC-2.
First is a sample starting with un-repaired audio for 30 seconds, then switching to repaired audio for 30 seconds. This continues throughout the sample, 30 seconds off, 30 seconds on:
Dropbox - 1_The Doors_The End_30 Seconds Off-On Audio Repair Sample.flac
Here's the complete original audio sample:
Dropbox - 2_The Doors_The End_Original Audio Sample.flac
And the complete repaired audio sample:
Dropbox - 3_The Doors_The End_Repaired Audio Sample.flac
I'll be looking forward to your comments...
Didn't know what to expect but I am wholly impressed!
I'm sure some people will invent or try to find something wrong with it but it sounds stellar on my equipment. Frankly, I find the 30 secs on and off in real-time pretty darn conclusive.
Fascinating - thanks for posting.
Have you tried this on
1. Songs with added vinyl noise/clicks? Do it also clean these? Like Portishead and many 00-hip hop music.
2. How does it work with noise music? There are music that sounds like noise and clicks. Will it clean this too?
I think it works greatly. I ran the files though Click Repair, and I would say SugarCube works considerably better. So, not bad.
I saw it at the 2016 NY Audio Show, and also got on the list, as I was immediately sold on the idea. Somehow, though, I never got the email from them, or perhaps it just went to spam, and I missed it. No matter now.
In retrospect, I have grown to doubt the value of the SC-1 for playback, and here's why. The clicks/pops are not removed by magic, what happens is the sound is first digitized on the fly by an ADC, then the data stream is filtered of clicks/pops, and the resulting data is then converted back to analog by a DAC. So, in the end - what do we really get? - Digital. And the sound is only as good as the DAC they have inside that gizmo. So much for analog, eh? Why lie to oneself, why run an analog turntable through a digital gizmo and pretend you're listening to analog? It's cheaper and simpler with a CD.
So - I have happily abandoned the idea of getting an SC-1 (playback only). The SC-2 is a different story - I do see it's utility of effortless needle drops plus noise filtering. But, at $2,500, it is not a cheap gizmo to have. I achieve close enough results with a cheap manual vacuum RCM plus a decent USB phono pre. I would buy one, though, if I had money to burn.
There is an analog solution to surface noise, by Esoteric Sound (the current owner of the Rek-O-Kut brand). Not sure how effective it is, but it's the only option I would agree to try for vinyl playback, given it's analog.
CEDAR, noise reduction, hiss reduction, click reduction, sound restoration
Seems pretty silly considering you're talking about added vinyl noise. This is specifically for live vinyl playing.
You're missing the point,
Tons of mastering aren't available in the digital world. If I want to listen to, say, Kevin Gray's mastering of Boston's S/T album, it ain't available on CD or hi-res files. Plenty of albums and 78s just aren't available in digital formats either.
That's one part of the answer. Here's the kicker... It doesn't matter if it gets converted AS LONG AS YOU CAN'T TELL THE DIFFERENCE! Sorry for the use of caps but it seems I need the subtlety of a sledgehammer to drive this point home to a number of people who seem to use their eyes to read specs and processes instead of their ears to listen to the end result.
Did you listen to the 30-sec on/off file kindly provided by the OP?
Maybe listen to it? Or accept the reviewer's judgments on that score?
I listened to it at the source - at the show, which is better than the 30 sec clip by the OP. If you can't hear the difference - you might be the lucky one, or the unlucky one, depending on how one chooses to take it. Saying you can't hear the difference attempts to re-start the old argument of digital vs analog. There is no right or wrong answer here, just what sounds better to you. When I just want the convenience of noise-free music - I listen to CD's, of which I have plenty. But when I want analog - I will play vinyl the way they were intended to be played, and I CAN hear the difference.
I'm in the analog camp, and no amount of sledgehammer diplomacy is going to change it for me.
Besides, I don't believe I am missing the point. If you noticed - I was speaking of myself only. I never said the gizmo is not useful to others. Many people will love it and swear by it - the more the merrier. I'm not trying to discredit the unit, just saying it's not for me.
Yes, let's just assume that all of our electronics color the sound in some way and that that is inherently not just a problem, but an inescapable fact of existential EVIL.
Then we can all play musical instruments in a live setting for each other whenever we want to hear music.
Vinyl was intended to be played with pops and crackle? That's news to me. If that were so, they'd come from the factory like that, like pre-distressed Jeans. Almost all my albums are in NM condition but for the few that aren't, a solution like this is quite appealing.
As for hearing the difference or not, I have a hard time believing that in a noisy show environment, you or anybody else were able to detect a difference and are instead allowing your preconceived notions get in the way of an honest assessment.
Posting the device isn't for you doesn't serve a purpose. I don't need or want another turntable. You don't see me posting in every turntable thread that I don't need another one. What good does that do to anybody?
Well @Strat-Mangler has responded much as I would have, and I thank him for that. But a few other thoughts too:
Yes, clean well pressed records don’t need an SC-2 or SC-1 in the system, unless you want what has to be the easiest way to record to FLAC, albeit at a premium cost. However so many records have issues that having one of these in your system means never having to be annoyed by the noise again. Whether with the physical controls or by using the phone app you can instantly go to bypass mode and a pure analog psth. The thing to understand is that with this device you really can’t hear a difference between the processed and unprocessed audio. Nie thst might be something some people refuse to believe, but it is so. Unfortunately what I can’t provide here is what the bypassed audio sounds like in the room, but you were in the room in 2016 and they did demo the audio to us in all modes, it wirked then and it works in my own room.
Having the SC-2 has allowed me to make a few purchases of used records at great prices that I wouldn’t have had I not had this option. The original UK press of Peter Gabriel’s “Us” for $20, sold. The records look practically flawless, but noise annoys in the grooves. One push of the button, all gone! Someone else bought the Classic Records version for $60.
Last weekend B&N were having a vinyl weekend promo and being a member and getting 10% off, plus with 10% off everything for the sale, plus another 15% off one item coupon I did quite well. But at least half the records I bought had some noise issues, not necessarily throughout, but enough to be irritating. With the SC-2, it’s all gone and I can make much better digital versions than the free downloads that came with some if them offer, plus from those that didn’t offer any at all. So my source of aggravation is removed along with a trip back to the store hoping that a replacement if in stock will be better.
If I had had to pay $2,500 for my SC-2 I may never have bought it, that’s a lot to plunk down for me ir most people. But $1,400 via the ideegogo campaign was as well. But I went in knowing it was a big discount that I’d not have a chance at again, my SC-2 was only $200 more than the SC-1 at retail level. One year later and I couldn’t be happier that I decided to go for it, it provides great enjoyment in what for me is the most important of my hobbies.
Silly? It is NOT silly. Added vinyl noise is a choice of the artist and I wonder of the sweetvinyl cleans those or not.
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