Let’s Talk About Vinyl

I’m planning a vinyl release. Where do I start?

Congratulations on your first vinyl release!  Your first step is to place an order with a pressing/plating plant before mastering your album at Infrasonic. If you’re unsure of what plant to work with, or have questions before placing your order, give us a call and we can help. 

  • Next, you’ll need to get your audio mastered. Infrasonic’s engineers master audio with your final format in mind, adhering to the necessary guidelines for vinyl.

  • After that, we strongly recommend that you have infrasonic make a reference acetate, also called a dub plate. A ref will give you the chance to listen to your mastered audio on vinyl before your record goes into production at the pressing plant. This is different from a test pressing. Refs can often save artists a lot of valuable time and money should there be an issue with mastering, or if you decide to make minor changes to the audio or sequencing, before cutting. 

  • While listening to your ref, evaluate how your mastered audio translates on vinyl. You should listen for problems with levels, distortion and other audio-related issues, and contact your engineer if you have any questions or concerns.

  •  Once the ref is approved, the last step for Infrasonic Mastering is to get your master lacquers cut. This lacquer will be used to create your metal stamper which will then be used to press your record.  Infrasonic normally delivers these master lacquers directly to your plating plant.


What’s the ideal length of a 7”, 10” or 12”?

We have a set of guidelines for program length on vinyl, but each project varies. Depending on your material, we can cut a longer side or suggest other options. Here are the ideal (not maximum) lengths we recommend:  

  • 7-inch:              

    • 6 minutes per side @ 33rpm

    •  2 to 3.5 minutes per side @ 45rpm

  • 10-inch:          

    • 12 minutes per side @ 33rpm

    • 8.5 minutes per side @ 45rpm

  • 12-inch:         

    • 18 minutes per side @ 33rpm

    • 12  Minutes per side @ 45rpm

What’s a catalog number and do I need one?

  • A catalog number, also called a matrix number, is a set of letters and numbers used to identify your record and yes, you need one. Artists and labels create their own catalog number, such as Infra-001 or XYZ-666.

  • We will etch the catalog number into the inner diameter of your vinyl lacquer. It will be used to keep track of your release during production and will appear on your pressed records.

What is scribe information?

  • Typically, your catalog number (see above) is etched, or “scribed,” into the inner diameter of your record, but you can choose to have additional information, or a personal message, included.0

  • For example, on Joy Division’s Closer LP, the message “This is the way” was etched into side A, and “step inside” into side b.  Depending on the length and content of the scribe, this may require additional billing. 

These FAQ’s didn’t answer my question. What do I do now?

Give us a call or shoot us an email and we’ll help you out.