Dumb Question about Mono Vinyl Playback

Discussion in 'Audio Hardware' started by teaser5, Mar 11, 2005.

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  1. Mister Charlie

    Mister Charlie "Music Is The Doctor Of My Soul " - Doobie Bros.

    Location:
    Aromas, CA USA
    This is an old answer, I know now that for mp3s and such keeping just one channel is fine, but if you burn it to a cd a cd always has two tracks, regardless if they're mono or stereo.

    As for your question, even if not summed it makes no difference, since with one or two tracks you still get the same information, the only caveat being if you only save one track make sure it is mono (centered) and not just in one channel (usually the left).

    The main reason for summing is to eliminate the noise from the separate channels that is more obvious when the program is mono, center channel. Scracthes and such pop out of both speakers unless summed into the content, where it is masked.
     
  2. Megamixer

    Megamixer New Member

    Thank you for your reply. I'll be re-recording a lot of old mono vinyl in the future. I've been recording and digitizing my vinyl for the past 12-14 years. Unfortunately the first half of that time I wasn't doing a very good job of it :(
     
  3. weaselriot

    weaselriot Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    I hate to sound confused about this, but I just want to clarify.

    It sounds as though the optimum approach is to use a true mono cartridge, though that may be far more expensive than many would be willing to pay.

    That said, if the amp/receiver has a "mono switch" (I have a Marantz SR-19 5.1 receiver, which has a "Mono" setting that supposedly combines both L and R and sends them as mono to the center channel speaker only), does that mean I am all set and do not need the "double Y" cables at all, or is it better to use both the cables and the switch? Or the cables without the switch? I do think the fact that I still use (or maybe even ever used) a 15 year old Marantz SR-19 receiver fairly establishes that I am likely not a prime candidate to be considering a dedicated mono cartridge at this point.

    Finally, I am familiar with "Y cables", having used them (usually mini stereo male to two RCA mono male) to send portable player line out to two amplified stereo speakers for use on the patio. I even used a "Y cable" in the early 1970s to send TV sound from my Heathkit color TV to my Dynakit Preamp (probably the last time I was ever ahead of the curve). But what is a "double Y"? Is it a complete set, with double RCA on both "outboard" ends? Or is it two different "Y" cables, presumably one with two female RCA to one male RCA (to receive the stereo line signal from my phono preamp and sum to mono), the other with one female RCA to two male RCA (to send two now-mono signals into L and R jacks on the receiver)? And if so, THEN should I STILL use the receiver's "mono switch", sending everything only to the center speaker? Or just leave it stereo to send two mono signals to the left and right speakers?

    The devil in the details, isn't it?
     
    Last edited: May 11, 2015
  4. KevinP

    KevinP Forum introvert

    Location:
    Daejeon
    Not such a dumb question if it still get answers (and legitimate ones) literally over 10 years later.

    It's also one of those 'stupid questions' your teachers warned about: somebody else may have the same question.
     
  5. sberger

    sberger Dream Baby Dream

    True mono cart(and an excellent one that I'm presently using) for $110. Well worth it if you have even a decent mono collection, and yes, it makes a difference that depending on the record is not subtle.
    http://www.amazon.com/Audio-Technica-AT-MONO3-LP-Moving-Cartridge/dp/B0002ERE2Q/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1431472261&sr=8-1&keywords=at mono 3 lp
     
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  6. senseabove

    senseabove Forum Resident

    One method of summing should be sufficient: the switch or Y-cables. And the "Double Y" is two Y connects, 2-(1)-2, in whatever arrangement you need for your system. The switch would be easier than swapping cables, but I imagine it'd nicer to have summed mono coming from all the speakers, not just the center. I only have a 2-channel system, and the mono signal goes to both L & R when I turn it on.

    Also, once you get to 50(?) posts, you'll see a classifieds section of the board, where there's a poster who sells a nifty little mono/stereo switch that you can just put in the line and save yourself the trouble of plugging and unplugging the Y-cables. Alternatively, I've read that, if your amp has a tape/processor loop, you can just use the Y-cables to send the audio from the tape out, through the Y-cables, to the tape in, et voila. I've not tried that method yet, as I had ordered the mono/stereo switch before I'd read about that possibility, but I plan on picking up some Y-cables to test it out next time I'm in a RadioShack.
     
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  7. Licorice pizza

    Licorice pizza Livin’ On The Fault Line

    On many of my old mono Lps, there are footnotes at the bottom of the jacket that say something like, "If played on stereo equipment, this mono recording will be reproduced with even more brilliance and detail" or something to that effect.
     
  8. weaselriot

    weaselriot Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    Thanks for that info. It strikes me as more than bit ironic that for the first time I actually need something from Radio Shack (since they swallowed up Allied Radio decades ago), they have just gone into bankruptcy and closed their stores. Now people will have to find another place to divulge all of their personal information just to buy batteries. We seem to have come almost full circle, back to the 19th century, when settlers in most parts of the country would have to order from the Sears catalog if it was not carried by the little dry goods store in town.
     
    Last edited: May 22, 2015
  9. senseabove

    senseabove Forum Resident

    I think Sprint bought a lot of their stores and kept them open, so you might check whether they've actually closed, if you're just assuming that it's closed. Both the stores near me still open. That said, I needed 2M-1F and 2M-1M y-cables to try the tape-loop trick, and they only had the 2M-1M in a 6-ft length. I ended up having to order a short 2M-1M from Amazon. So RadioShack may not have what you need anyway!
     
  10. weaselriot

    weaselriot Forum Resident

    Location:
    Chicago, IL
    The Radio Shack near me already closed. When open, it was truly rare that they had anything that I needed, and rarer still that they had anything I wanted. Until the1970s, I would go to Allied Radio, which had everything. Period. But Radio Shack bought them ou,t and then phased them out. I did by my first audiophile vinyl (Al Stewart "Year of the Cat") at Allied before Radio Shack phased them out before 1980. I guess it's Amazon now...
     
  11. honestabe316

    honestabe316 Analog Rebel

    Hi Steve, about 10 years to late here, but in your info about using the double y-cords for mono records, you say this is not for digital influenced vinyl. I am considering buying some of the beatles new mono releases and i really dont typically play mono records. I have a Stanton 681eee cart and what im assuming to be a stylus for stereo pressings. Why would the y-cords not be an option for vinyl that has a digital aspect...

    Regards,

    Scott
     
  12. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    Scott, you misunderstood me completely. Read again!
     
  13. honestabe316

    honestabe316 Analog Rebel

    Ahh...so you meant a digital recording like a cd or digital download of a mono recording....I thought you meant any vinyl in the "post" total analog era that had a digital aspect to it....my goof...thanks for clarifying steve. Im a relatively new vinyl enthusiast and want to pick up some of the 2014 beatles mono lp's and be able to listen to them as they are meant to be heard.

    P.S
    I recently purchased 4 leon russell dcc aluminum (silver) cd's as ive never heard your work. To say i was blown away is an understatement. ...thanks for taking the time to respond and happy new year !!!

    Scott
     
  14. You got it. As an aside though, the Beatles mono reissues from 2014 are all analog, cut from tapes. Only the stereo counterparts from 2013 were cut from a digital source.
     
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  15. honestabe316

    honestabe316 Analog Rebel

    I knew the stereo ones were, and since I wasnt interested in the mono lp's
    until recently, I hadn't read much about them and therefore assumed they were also digitally sourced. Thanks Steve, you've been a great help with this,


    Scott
     
  16. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    No prob., happy to help.
     
  17. PopularChuck

    PopularChuck Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bay Area
    Resurfacing this old thread because I've read through it all and still have a question:

    I've used the Y-connector trick to sum the signals using a stereo cartridge to listen to my Beatles mono records and the like. If I install a mono cartridge, is the Y-connector still required? Or does a mono cart make the Y-c0nnector redundant?
     
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  18. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    No.

    Yes.
     
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  19. PopularChuck

    PopularChuck Forum Resident

    Location:
    Bay Area
    Thank you, Steve. :)
     
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  20. Radio

    Radio Forum Resident

    Location:
    Michigan
    Listening to my old "Meet the Beatles" right now with the double Y trick and it's like a new album!
     
  21. DRM

    DRM Forum Resident

    Seems like this would make the 2014 preferable to the 2009 or 2017 mono offerings.
     
  22. McLover

    McLover Senior Member

    Location:
    Athens, Tennessee
    This reissue was cut on a Stereo cutting head, play it with the same setup you like for modern Stereo audiophile discs.
     
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  23. Grateful Ed

    Grateful Ed Forum Resident

    Location:
    Vermont
    Is there some sort of switch that can be inserted "in-line" that can switch between mono and stereo? This would certainly be more convenient that plugging and unplugging RCA y cables when going between mono and stereo records.
     
  24. Grateful Ed

    Grateful Ed Forum Resident

    Location:
    Vermont
    Nevermind! Found the classifieds ad for the switch made by a forum member.
     
  25. Tony Plachy

    Tony Plachy Senior Member

    Location:
    Pleasantville, NY
    There is such a switch that I know of (there may be others) KAB Electro Acoustics http://www.kabusa.com . Of course, you still need an extra set of cables, but the remote control switch means everything stays in place. :cool: I have no experience with this switch.
     
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