New to records?
Terminology can be confusing at first, so we've put together an introduction to some terms every collector should know.
Long-playing record. 33 ½ rpm, and a standard of 12”. Sometimes 10”! Debuted by Columbia Records in 1948.
A recording that has more tracks than a single, but less than an LP. Usually between 4 and 6 tracks.
A 7” record that is typically either a single with an A-side & B-side, or it’s an EP with a few select tracks.
A repressing of a record previously released. Sometimes this means added tracks, a remastered version, or a thicker vinyl.
The “edition” of the record. Collectors will often look for 1st pressings. Then there is the country where it’s pressed - US, England, Germany, Taiwan, etc.
The needle at the tip of your record arm which amplifies the vibrations to produce sound.
The metal or plastic casing at the end of your record arm containing the stylus. Often, the needle and casing together are referred to as the cartridge.
The metal rod that is used to mount the cartridge & stylus. Commonly, you manually “pick up” the arm to “set” it, but sometimes turntables will autoset.
A machine that changes the input of your devices (turntable, tape deck, etc.) and connects to your speakers. Some newer turntables have a built-in receiver, but for most, you’ll need a separate piece of equipment.
The paper, or plastic, covering into which you slide the record.
The hard paper outer shell you put the record into -
The indentations on the record where the music lives.
Rotations per minute. Typically (but not always) 12” LP’s with have 33 1/2 rpm, while 7”s play at 45 rpm - hence the term “45”.
The thickness & weight of a record. 180g is typically considered “heavyweight” vinyl, and is the usual choice for newer records.
The flat inner vinyl part near the label where there are no grooves. Here is where you’ll find runcodes & sometimes the signature engraving of the mastering engineer (Google “Porky’s Prime Cuts” if you wanna get super nerdy with it)