Channel D Pure Vinyl Review. Pure Vinyl is a software programme available on the Mac OS X platform that enables users to record and catalogue their records in ultra high quality straight from their turntable via an audio interface.
Sporting a litany of the finest music industry and engineering credentials, the bods behind the professional audiophile brand, Channel D, are a truly exceptional bunch that all share one plain and simple aim; to preserve purity throughout every element of audio playback. Without casting too many aspersions, you may believe that this process, in theory, is much easier to achieve than it truly is in practice, and this is why the Channel D brand is exceptional.
Whilst Channel D has hit all the right spots at a bevy of tradeshows by winning many prestigious awards since 1985, today at The Pro Audio Web Blog we will be investigating ‘Pure Vinyl’. This special high-
Yes, you did indeed read that last sentence right, Pure Vinyl is unfortunately limited to just the OS X platform at this present time. It almost feels inhuman to highlight this crippling limitation so early on into our review and perhaps we can offer some explanation as to why this is so: For many years the OS X platform has served audio enthusiasts well, grown, and has become known as the most ‘supported’ platform for music industry professionals. Ever since 1985 the Channel D team has been working in the realm of producing Macintosh programmes, but this strict upbringing has been cruel to the ‘Windows’ or ‘Linux’ fraternity who have been alienated from Channel D’s extraordinary ventures. It is respectable that Channel D’s products have stuck at what they know inside out, and thus guarantee quality with Apples extended audio functionality, but, as a team, we do feel that this is the biggest downfall for this feature rich programme that promises so much. Plain and simple; this ‘misalignment’ is sadly responsible for our immediate half-
Having discussed the simple environmental limitations, it is worth knowing that Pure Vinyl is not available on the App Store, so you will have to make sure in your security settings that you can install apps from third-
The system that we have personally used is the following: One Quad-
Pure Vinyl is a deceptively comprehensive package that comprises of four fine parts: 1) Vinyl Recording; A suite of tools that are used in conjunction with each other, with or without a phono stage, to transfer your physical Vinyl’s ‘Real-
As mentioned previously, Pure Vinyl comes with an exceptional inverse RIAA equalisation tool. This tool in question is by far one of the best that we have ever come across, but what is even better is that Pure Vinyl comes with a huge number of tailored RIAA presets for many of the well-
Recording with Pure Vinyl is a very simple affair. After selecting the inputs that you would like to record from within the Audio Setup’ pane you can see all your pre-
Within the main screen it is very useful to actually see your real-
As you enter the recording you have the ability to let the software cue when the tonearm hits the deck. For effective practice you will need to let the software learn when you want it to cue the recording, and this is quite cumbersome. Often we couldn’t get it to work flawlessly so we just did without it’s handy operation, and finally once the recording starts you can relax. Unlike other software you don’t have to stop and start the recordings to split the tracks – the editing comes later.
Finally after one side has finished recording hit the flashing red spindle again, lift the tonearm up with the cue, and then wait for a very cleaver rendered picture of your vinyl on screen. The graphic that appears on screen is generated directly from the recording, and bares a similar resemblance to what you would find on the vinyl. Now the fun part begins. Without having to be too much of a geek Pure Vinyl makes it easy. From the rendered vinyl image you can slide the tangential tracking arm (similar to that of the physical cutter head during creating a vinyl master) across the record to the points where you see a break in the continuity. Almost for show the waveform will appear along with the vinyl spinning. From here you can play back your vinyl, but all you really have to do is split the track, name the sections, and save to your location. Job done! Very easy!
Now you enter the realm of playback of your track, or any track of your choice, with Pure Vinyls engine surrendering the insignificant iTunes processing abilities to produce a luxurious whole new dimension to music consumption. This added extra is where you are paying a premium on this product, and is arguably Pure Vinyls best ability. To enter this mode you simply have to select the iTunes logo in the top right of the main window when Pure Vinyl opens. Notably the software in this instance did not have any issues with changing the sample rate of our audio interface to match that of the audio file being played, so if you listen to very high-
During playback of standard tracks we found Pure Vinyl to sound massively detailed, smooth, rich and full in its approach. You will notice that there is some slight amalgamation of lower midrange frequencies that promotes a deep punch within the bass, but the midrange itself is very lush and has great body. On the whole the sonic signature is nice and dynamic in comparison to some of the other competitors out there who just deal with supplementing iTunes’ audio engine. As we continue to sing the praises of the playback engine, I really have grown to like the way that the treble frequencies are presented. On the whole the have a thinner approach that goes hand in hand with an apparent wider stereo separation. An example of this is with high-
Through use Pure Vinyl has enabled me to hear the minor nuances of sound, those sounds that make music ‘music’, and they are not accented per se, but they seem more naturally present than what I might have experienced before. Personally I am a real stickler for listening out for these things because to me they are so important in my appreciation and consumption of music, so with this I am overwhelmed with the precision of musicality that can be detected across the entire instrumentation. When you marry this accuracy, or instrumental refinement, with a full slightly Hi-
Pure Vinyl is an exceptionally comprehensive tool that has a lot to offer. We have found its interface to be extremely detailed yet simple to use. The recording process yields a recording that matches the true input from your turntable, and the RIAA equalisation is out of this world. Even when using the Pure Vinyl engine to playback recordings, or tracks that you have acquired from any source, to sound rich and full of life. The only reason why Channel D’s Pure Vinyl is being awarded with a four-