The copy we are selling is similar to the one pictured above.
Side One: Mint Minus to Mint Minus Minus
Side Two: Mint Minus to Mint Minus Minus
- A STUNNING copy of Yellow Submarine, with Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound or close to it from start to finish - exceptionally quiet vinyl too
- With a Nearly Triple Plus side two, finally the orchestral side has strings that sound smoother and sweeter than you've ever heard them
- The only place to find the All-Time Classic Hey Bulldog, as well as All Together Now and It's All Too Much
- "All You Need Is Love" debuted in a true stereo mix on LP for this album. Only four new Beatles songs appeared on the album, and two were recorded specifically for the film: "All Together Now" and "Hey Bulldog."
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This is a very difficult album to find good sound for; many pressings are almost unbearably gritty and harsh. Fortunately, these two sides have no such problems. The overall tonality is rich and full-bodied, and there's plenty of presence and energy as well. Truly killer!
This vintage pressing has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern records rarely even BEGIN to reproduce. Folks, that sound is gone and it sure isn't showing signs of coming back. If you love hearing INTO a recording, actually being able to "see" the performers, and feeling as if you are sitting in the studio with the band, this is the record for you. It's what vintage all analog recordings are known for -- this sound.
If you exclusively play modern repressings of vintage recordings, I can say without fear of contradiction that you have never heard this kind of sound on vinyl. Old records have it -- not often, and certainly not always -- but maybe one out of a hundred new records do, and those are some pretty long odds.
What the best sides of Yellow Submarine have to offer is not hard to hear:
- The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
- The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1969
- Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
- Natural tonality in the midrange -- with all the instruments having the correct timbre
- Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional space of the studio
No doubt there's more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is the only way to hear all of the qualities we discuss above, and playing the best pressings against a pile of other copies under rigorously controlled conditions is the only way to find a pressing that sounds as good as this one does.
What We're Listening For on Yellow Submarine
- Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
- The Big Sound comes next -- wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
- Then transient information -- fast, clear, sharp attacks, not the smear and thickness common to most LPs.
- Tight, note-like bass with clear fingering -- which ties in with good transient information, as well as the issue of frequency extension further down.
- Next: transparency -- the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the players.
- Then: presence and immediacy. The vocals aren't "back there" somewhere, way behind the speakers. They're front and center where any recording engineer worth his salt would have put them.
- Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing -- an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.
Mint Minus Minus and maybe a bit better is about as quiet as any vintage pressing will play, and since only the right vintage pressings have any hope of sounding good on this album, that will most often be the playing condition of the copies we sell. (The copies that are even a bit noisier get listed on the site are seriously reduced prices or traded back in to the local record stores we shop at.)
Those of you looking for quiet vinyl will have to settle for the sound of later pressings and Heavy Vinyl reissues, purchased elsewhere of course as we have no interest in selling records that don't have the vintage analog magic that is a key part of the appeal of these wonderful recordings.
If you want to make the trade-off between bad sound and quiet surfaces with whatever Heavy Vinyl pressing might be available, well, that's certainly your prerogative, but we can't imagine losing what's good about this music -- the size, the energy, the presence, the clarity, the weight -- just to hear it with less background noise.
A Tough Title to Play
Side two of this recording, the orchestral side, ranks high on our Difficulty of Reproduction Scale. Do not attempt to play it using any but the best equipment.
It took us a long time to get to the point where we could clean the record properly, twenty years or so, and about the same amount of time to get the stereo to the level it needed to be, involving, you guessed it, many of the Revolutionary Changes in Audio> we tout so obsessively.
As we've said before about these kinds of recording, they are designed to bring an audio system to its knees. If you have the kind of big system that a record like this demands, when you drop the needle on the best of our Hot Stamper pressings, you are going to hear some amazing sound .
This is a record that's going to demand a lot from the home audio enthusiast, and we want to make sure that you feel you're up to the challenge. If you don't mind putting in a little hard work, here's a record that will reward your time and effort many times over, and probably teach you a thing or two about tweaking your gear in the process (especially your VTA adjustment, just to pick an obvious area most audiophiles neglect).
- Yellow Submarine
- Only A Northern Song
- All Together Now
- Hey Bulldog
- It's All Too Much
- All You Need is Love