VinylDisc hybrid plays on turntables or optical drives

German manufacturers Optimal Media Production claim that their new VinylDisc is a hybrid CD/vinyl album that will play in an optical drive or on a turntable: "The VinylDisc is a combination audio CD and special record. It consists of two attached layers. The silver layer contains digital audio information, while the black upper layer can be played on every record player." Link (via Make)


  1. hmm snary comment snarky comment….

    Um.. “I personally can’t wait for the 8-track deck with usb mass storage”.

    Thats all I got.

  2. Guess there’s an age difference between you and me, but I found the transparent DVD much more exciting…

  3. yay, something that combines the worst of both technologies. and what about the speed issues? CDs spin really fast, and their spindles are much larger than the spindles on conventional turntables, which also spin much slower. are they selling a pop-in adaptor for each disc, too?

  4. This is going to create an industry of CDs with really special b-sides on the vinyl…rare stuff you need a needle to hear.

    But is it anything more than a novelty? I mean — what is the “practical” purpose?

  5. This is nothing new. I’ve seen plenty of punk/noise releases like this. The most “famous” is probably the Baltimore noise group Nautical Almanac’s penchant for Lathe-cutting record grooves on the back of CDs.

  6. Yeah this is nothing new, check out this awesome label from Austria, they have whats called the Digital Vinyl Trash club (DVT-club) where on the digital side they put video files instead of audio files.

    They produce 33 of each disc and it’ll cost you 60 Euros for a 6 month subscription.

    I love the idea personally, i’m a huge record collector and music nerd and lets face it, if you really love music you have a turntable and this will excite you a bit.

    Franko if you look in the pics you will see a red piece to address your spindle size issue.

  7. Wait it finally dawned on me that this is not a 2 sided disc, just a single sided disc with smarts…

  8. Well if the quality of the vinyl is good. I sometimes buy HQ vinyl that I would also like on CD, but then its typically 180 gram, virgin vinyl, 12 inch LPs. I doubt that this is something that makes since in that world. but we shall see.

  9. Fun anecdote:

    A friend sent me 2 CD-Rs with vinyl on the top. It looked like a novelty and no data on the top, which turned out to be correct.

    He periodically would send me good electronic music CDs, sometimes quite abstract.

    I popped these CDs into a regular player, and enjoyed a fiew seconds of some very noisy, abstract electronica. But something went wrong, and I only heard static for a while.

    I thought this was weird. Why would he send blank or corrupted discs? But then I popped the CDs into a computer and found them to be DATA CDS! The noise I enjoyed was just some file table or header, with the static being the body of the mp3s on the disks. Ridiculous.

  10. “…the black upper layer can be played on every record player.”


    This has been done before, and is not always so wonderful as it sounds. I recall a band from Boston tried this in the early 1990’s, by gluing a one-sided 5″ single onto a cd. The problem: you can only fit about 2 minutes at 33 1/3 rpm onto a disc that size, PLUS many record players wont play that far into a disc– the automatic return mechanism on many common turntables lifts the stylus/arm about halfway through the song and shuts off the platter.

    In fact there IS a turntable that reads the grooves of a record with a laser, supposedly reducing the wear-and-tear on your vinyl to nil, but it cost about 10,000 bucks.

    Records have been around for about 100 years, cds for only about 25 (cd technology was actually invented in the early 70’s), so I don’t necessarily trust cds yet– even today they master albums from original vinyl sources when the original master tapes have disappeared or eroded (especially considering the millions of recordings ruined for years because the industry standard AMPEX tape was being made with a defective tape recipe.) I have seen many instances of “cd rot” where the aluminum degrades through the plastic, ruining the data (whether the cd has been played or not).

    well. . . that’s my 2 cents anyway.

  11. If digital is done properly at high sampling frequency, the data can be maintained forever.
    However I like the marketing idea on this, This new marketing tool may help to sell the artists music, then I am all for it!
    This is probably being done in this manner to hit a more universal audience.

    Doesn’t make sense… but it is a great marketing tool! They have created controversary to have all of us check this new market out…

    Check out this site for quality CDR’s:

    Indienink Music

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