A vinyl record is an analog medium that provides high-quality sound, but it’s important to keep in mind that there is a specific limit to how much music can fit on a vinyl record. Additionally, vinyl records have two sides, so it’s essential to prepare the material accordingly for pressing.
How many minutes of music can fit on a vinyl record?
The maximum allowable length of sound depends on the cutting method chosen. At XDiSC, two types of matrices are used: DMM (Direct Metal Mastering) and Lacquer ACETATE. Regarding sound quality, there are no significant differences between these two methods, but the choice of matrix impacts the length of the material that can be accommodated. In general, DMM allows for more music.
A 12″ DMM Standard record at 33 rpm can hold 22 minutes of music on one side, though the recommended value is 20 minutes. It is possible to extend this to 26 minutes for compressed music or 28 minutes for dynamic music; however, this is not recommended due to potential sound quality degradation. Twelve-inch records played at 45 rpm can hold up to 10 minutes of music, with a recommended length of 8 minutes, extendable to 13 minutes.
For 10″ records, the recommended recording length is 9 minutes at 33 rpm or 6 minutes at 45 rpm. It is possible to extend this to 11 minutes and 8 minutes, but this is not recommended due to potential material quality issues.
Seven-inch records can accommodate 6 minutes at 33 rpm or 4.5 minutes at 45 rpm, with an option to extend to 7.5 minutes and 5 minutes.
Lacquer ACETATE for shorter material
Whenever the recorded material exceeds 20 minutes per side, it is recommended to use DMM technology. Lacquer ACETATE is suitable for shorter recordings. A 12″ Lacquer ACETATE record designed for playback at 33 rpm can fit 20 minutes of music, but it is recommended to shorten the recording time to 16 minutes. At 45 rpm playback speed, the maximum allowable material length is 13 minutes, with a recommended playing time of 10.5 minutes.
For ten-inch records, the values look as follows:
– recommended 10 minutes with the possibility of extending to 12 minutes at 33 rpm.
– recommended 7.5 minutes with the possibility of extending to 9 minutes at 44 rpm.
Seven-inch records can have 4 minutes of music on one side at 33 rpm or 3 minutes at 45 rpm. The duration of each side can be extended by one minute.