Contact Us

Which Sounds Better, Records Or CDs? [VIDEOS]

For decades now there has been a debate amongst audiophiles as to which sounds better…Records or CDs?  Maybe a better question might be, Why do they sound different?

My parents gave me my first record player when I was 2-years-old.  Before I could read, I could pick out specific records.  If my folks gave me a certain title and artist, I would inevitably get it right.

Like millions of people, I grew up listening to vinyl recordings.  Then came 8-tracks and cassettes.  8-track and cassette recordings were really hard to judge in terms of sound quality since the quality of the tape differed so much.  So we won’t include them in this discussion.

I remember the first time I was introduced to a compact disc (CD), it was Radio Shack in Patterson, La.  I demonstrate a brand new cd player to a customer by throwing the cd across the store, walked over, retrieved it, then stuck it in the player and it played flawlessly.  The man and woman bought it on the spot!

To help us to decide the difference in sound quality between vinyl records and digital cds, let’s first learn how they are made…

How A Record Is Made

Subscribe to 99.9 KTDY on

How A CD Is Made

Subscribe to 99.9 KTDY on


So here is the skinny on sound quality.  Some audiophiles refer to the sound quality of vinyl “warm” and the sound quality of the digital CD “cold”.  And there is a reason for that.  The vinyl recording is an identical copy of the original source.  The digital copy (CD) is only “samples” of the original recording.  So even though you will not hear scratches and pops while listening to a CD, you probably aren’t hearing all of the music either.

Also the frequency response is traditionally better from vinyl than from digital recordings.  Even vinyl recording from the 1950’s have a better frequency response than today’s CDs.  The average CD tends to cut off all high sounds past 22k hertz while vinyl albums have been known to produce sounds 60k hertz and higher.  However, the human ear is not supposed to hear anything higher that 20k hertz.

Overall, minus the pops and rumble, an album will sound better than a CD.






Best of KTDY

Recommended For You

Best of the Web

Leave a Comment

It appears that you already have an account created within our VIP network of sites on . To keep your personal information safe, we need to verify that it's really you. To activate your account, please confirm your password. When you have confirmed your password, you will be able to log in through Facebook on both sites.

Forgot your password?

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

It appears that you already have an account on this site associated with . To connect your existing account just click on the account activation button below. You will maintain your existing VIP profile. After you do this, you will be able to always log in to using your original account information.

*Please note that your prizes and activities will not be shared between programs within our VIP network.

Please fill out the information below to help us provide you a better experience.

(Forgot your password?)

Not a member? Sign up here

Sign up for KTDY Winners Club quickly by connecting your Facebook account. It's just as secure and no password to remember!

Sign up to have exclusive KTDY Winners Club contests, events, coupons, presales, and much more delivered to you for FREE.