Once your music is ready for your vinyl pressing (mixed, mastered, and in the desired sequence), you can upload your digital files to a service such as WeTransfer, Dropbox, Google Drive, etc., and provide us with a download link. You may also mail us a CD, DVD, or analog tape. Please contact your URP account manager for mailing instructions on these formats. There may be additional fees added to your order depending on the source format.
Our suggested maximums are as follows:
7” 33 1/3 RPM – Do not exceed 8 minutes per side.
7” 45 RPM – Do not exceed 6 minutes per side.
7″ 78 RPM – Do not exceed 3 minutes per side.
12” 33 1/3 RPM – Do not exceed 25 minutes per side.
12” 45 RPM – Do not exceed 13 minutes per side.
12″ 78 RPM – Do not exceed 11 minutes per side.
10” 33 1/3 RPM – Do not exceed 13 minutes per side.
10” 45 RPM – Do not exceed 8 minutes per side.
10″ 78 RPM – Do not exceed 6 minutes per side.
If you exceed the recommended length for a vinyl record side, you can potentially encounter several issues that might impact the audio quality and playability of the record. Vinyl records have limitations in terms of how much audio content can be accommodated on each side due to the physical constraints of the medium.
Here are some potential consequences of exceeding the recommended length for a vinyl record side:
- Audio Quality Degradation: As you try to fit more content onto a side, the grooves on the vinyl need to be squeezed closer together, along with either reduced bass or overall levels, to prevent the grooves from overlapping. This can result in a reduction of quality, causing noisier records and compromised levels/bass response. The grooves may become narrower and shallower, leading to an increase in skipping and noisier records.
- Increased Noise Floor: Vinyl records have limited dynamic range compared to digital formats when it comes to noise floor. Exceeding the recommended length can exacerbate this limitation, causing quieter parts of the audio to be pushed closer to the noise floor, resulting in a loss of detail and subtlety in the music.
- Tracking Issues: The stylus (needle) on a turntable needs to track the grooves accurately to reproduce the sound. If the grooves are too densely packed due to excessive content, the stylus may struggle to track properly, leading to skipping, distortion, or even damage to the stylus and the record itself.
- Inner Groove Distortion: The innermost grooves of a vinyl record have a smaller diameter and less physical space to work with. Exceeding the recommended length can make it challenging to maintain proper audio quality in these inner grooves, leading to distortion and reduced high frequencies.
To avoid these issues, it’s recommended to adhere to the recommended maximum length for each side of a vinyl record. This length varies based on factors like the music’s genre, the desired audio quality, and the speed at which the record is being played (e.g., 33 1/3 RPM or 45 RPM). If your content exceeds the recommended length, you might consider splitting it across multiple sides or editing it down to fit within the constraints of the vinyl medium.
When listening to your tests, you should be checking to make sure the songs are in the correct order. You should also check for any sound quality issues. The reason you are sent multiple copies of your tests is so you can compare any quality issues to see if they appear consistently in the same spot on each test pressing. If it is consistent on each test, notify your account manager to have the quality team investigate your issues.
We accept the following formats:
- Metal parts: If you’re handling the plating of your project, we require the masters, mothers, and unformed initial stamper set be sent. We cannot move forward with your order until all metal parts are in-house.
- 16-bit and 24-bit WAV files with sampling rates of 44.1k up to 192k
- DSD files
- Analog Tape
- ¼” and ½” tape, 7.5 to 30 IPS (inches per second)
Lacquer mastering refers to taking your music (originally on digital files, CD, analog tape, etc.) and transferring it – cutting it – onto a lacquer disc. Digital mastering should be done prior to sending your source music to us for lacquer mastering and should sound like you want the music to sound on a vinyl record, sequenced in order with the correct spacing between each song and separate files for each side.
If you need digital mastering for your project, please contact Nashville Record Productions!
The source you send should sound like you want the music to sound on the vinyl record, sequenced in order with the correct spacing between each song and a separate file for each side.
Metal parts will be stored for one year. You may request to have these sent back to you (shipping charges apply).
Our in-house mastering studio, Nashville Record Productions, offers digital mastering services. Please visit their website for more information.
A locked groove is a continuous loop of music the length of one full rotation of the record. Locked grooves can be silent but are usually used to repeat about 1.5 seconds of music until you pick up the needle. For best results (to avoid overlap/self-erasure), the audio should stay under 1.5 seconds at 33 1/3 RPM and 1.00 second at 45 RPM. This is not necessary to keep the needle from playing into the label at the end of the side. When we cut your lacquer, we always include a lockout groove which does exactly that.
A reference lacquer is a sample disc that is created before lacquer mastering or plating. These are rarely ordered and only necessary if a customer is not certain their music will sound right on vinyl or if they are not sure their music will fit on a single LP.
A test pressing is a sample press of your record using the same metal parts that will be used in your actual order. These are made with a generic label and shipped in generic packaging. We internally check the tests then send them to you to approve. Once these are approved, we will move forward with your vinyl order. When sending in lacquers or metal parts, your test pressings are audio tested to ensure copyright clearance.
We prefer receiving separate Side A and Side B files, with songs properly sequenced and desired spacing already included.
3-step plating is creating a master, mother, and stamper from the lacquer. The 3-step process provides more insurance for your project in case the mother goes bad or gets damaged.
A matrix number, also known as a run-out groove number or matrix code, is a unique alphanumeric code that is stamped or etched into the run-out groove area of a vinyl record. This area is the space between the last track and the label of the record. The matrix number serves several purposes:
- Identification: Matrix numbers help identify and differentiate different pressings or versions of the same record. They are often used by record labels, pressing plants, and collectors to track and categorize records. The matrix number might include copyright information, manufacturing details, and even information about the mastering process. It could include the record label’s catalog number, the record’s side (A or B), and other production-related details.
- Authenticity: In the world of vinyl collecting, matrix numbers can play a role in determining the authenticity and rarity of a record. Different matrix numbers can indicate variations in the mastering, pressing, or other aspects of the vinyl record.
- Dating and Pressing Information: Sometimes, matrix numbers can provide clues about when the record was pressed or manufactured. Changes in matrix numbers over time might indicate different production runs.
- Historical Documentation: Matrix numbers can be valuable for historical documentation and research purposes. They can provide insights into the manufacturing processes of different eras.
Overall, the matrix number on a vinyl record is a small but significant detail that can carry information about the record’s origin, production process, and history. It’s often of interest to collectors and enthusiasts in the world of vinyl records.