Even amidst a sonic landscape in which any song you’ve ever imagined is available at the call of an Alexa, folks still love vinyl. It’s warm. It’s nostalgic. It looks super romantic alongside the exposed brick in your apartment. But what happens when vinyl receives an update akin to other technological advances in the music industry?
That’s what Austrian-based startup Rebeat Innovation has done with their recently-patented method of manufacturing “High Definition Vinyl”—records boasting higher audio fidelity, louder volume and longer playing times than LPs of yore.
Rebeat’s process of creating HD vinyl consists of converting digital audio to a 3D topographic map, where lasers are then used to imprint said map onto a stamper (which is the thing that’s used to stamp all those tiny little grooves into your Def Leppard records). It’s a process that results in lower losses of audio information, greater amplitude and more reliable audio reproduction—not to mention, it’s better for the environment, as less harmful chemicals are utilized in the manufacturing.
Whether HD vinyl catches any mainstream clout remains to be seen—its first slate of records is expected to hit stores in summer 2019. In the meantime, you can continue dropping a needle on those same ol' dusty LPs, which still sound pretty damn great.