What is vinyl?

Vinyl is a term used in chemistry to name the unsaturated monovalent functional group and the substance that contains that functional group (it is usually a polymer with a consistency similar to leather).

The concept is also used to refer to the vinyl phono record, also known as a phono record or simply vinyl. It is a sound reproduction format based on analog mechanical recording. It is important to note that discs can also be made of plastic or aluminum. Vinyls fell out of favor after the development of cassette tapes and compact discs. However, disc jockeys (DJs or DJs) use them for their musical creations; therefore, its sales grew again after the emergence of electronic music.

Depending on the number of songs they contain per side and the diameter of the disc, it can be said that it is single (one song per side), floppy disc (with flexible plastic format), extended play (up to three songs per side), maxi single (two or three songs per side) and long play (more than four songs per side). Polyvinyl chloride or PVC, moreover, is a thermoplastic polymer that softens at 80°C and decomposes at 140°C. This product has a high electrical and fire resistance. There are rigid (used for pipes and containers) and flexible (used in footwear, flooring and other industries) polyvinyl chloride. Recording a vinyl record The process of recording a vinyl record is quite complex, as it requires the fulfillment of seven well-defined steps. However, the total duration does not exceed 30 minutes. Let’s look at each of the steps: 1) After having recorded, mixed and mastered the music on the corresponding medium, which is currently digital, it goes through a process that prepares it for the medium in which it will be distributed (this is called remastering). This step is very important in the case of vinyl records, as it directly affects the final quality; This is the time when you can eliminate the noise, adjust the sound distribution on the available channels and correct the intensity; 2) This phase is known as the master disc cutting and consists of transferring the contents of the mother tape to a master disc, which is also called a master lacquer or master lacquer; It is a disc that is usually made of polished aluminum and is coated with a nitrocellulose lacquer in black, bluish or reddish color, according to the manufacturer’s wishes, and its thickness is a minimum of 0.6mm and a maximum of 1mm. For this task, a machine called a vertical phonographic recording lathe is used; it has a head that is responsible for cutting and modulating the groove, to transfer the music to the disc. The recording signal goes through an equalization process that adjusts it to the disc’s characteristics on a physical level;

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3) After recording the master disc, it should be washed with soap and water and then covered with tin chloride. Finally, a thin layer of silver adheres to it; 4) The disc is immersed in a nickel-based solution, which receives electricity to stimulate the coating. It is then removed and washed again; 5) The nickel-silver layer is removed, which contains a negative copy of the disk, called the disk or parent matrix; 6) From the parent disk, the mother disk is obtained, a positive copy. Once the accuracy of the information is verified, the process is carried out seven more times and from each of the eight resulting discs, two negatives are produced, the so-called stamping discs; 7) Finally, the stamping disc is used to obtain the commercial copy, which will be offered for sale.

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