Cheaper, higher-quality vinyl records are coming in HD -- here's everything you need to know

Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

If you love listening to music on vinyl records, we have some good news for you.

An Austrian startup has received enough funding to start creating HD vinyl records, which will have around 30% more playing time and far better audio quality than traditional LPs.

Rebeat, based in Tulln, has raised a $A6.18 million investment to secure the project. Founder and CEO G√ľnter Loibl told Pitchfork that the first HD vinyl records could be on shelves by late 2019.

The best thing is, you don’t need any new expensive equipment to play them. They can be played on a normal vinyl turntable and high-end record player.

Although to be able to fully hear all the benefits of HD, you can get an HD-compatible turntable, which will be available for sale when the new records are released.

The way they’re created will be radically different than traditional vinyl methods. According to HowStuffWorks, a traditional LP is created with something similar to a printing press. A “master” printing stamp is created, and each record is stamped or printed in a hydraulic press.

The new HD LPs will be made using 3D-based topographical mapping combined with laser inscription technology, similar to that of a CD, which will enable HD LPs to be manufactured much more quickly. Digital Music News estimates it will cut production time by 60%, and production costs by 50%.

Loibl said that he plans to have new stampers running at five new “early mover” pressing plants with the first test pressings available by September.

If they’re ready in time, he plans to show them at the Making Vinyl conference in October.

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