We always recommend going for the test pressing option when launching a project with Diggers Factory. This essential step in the smooth running of the production will allow you to check the good quality of the sound of your vinyl before starting the rest of the process!
Let's get into depth to understand why the test pressing is so important, and how to listen to it in the best conditions.
A sample of your production
The test pressing essentially prepares the production of your vinyl records: it is a sample obtained after the creation of the first plates, that the factory sends directly to the artist for validation. At Diggers Factory, we automatically suggest manufacturing 5 copies: you keep 3 on your side and 2 are kept by our quality department, here at Diggers. This step allows us to compare on different turntables if it turns out that the sound rendition of your disc is not optimal on your side.
However, it is not a final rendering of the vinyl: it is delivered to you without its cover, without printed labels and without color on the disc in a basic white inner sleeve.
Note that not opting for the test pressing does not guarantee faster production times! On the other hand, it saves us all a lot of risk-taking :)
It is of course possible to produce more than 5 copies, especially for large quantities!
How to properly listen to your test pressing?
It is of course necessary to be properly equipped and to be in the best possible conditions to listen to your TP! Your equipment must be of good quality with safe wiring to limit potential interferences.
The first reflex must be to check that the correct reference for your project is written on each side of the TP. Then when listening make sure that transitions are linked normally and that your entire tracklist is in order.
Thereafter, keep in mind that the rendering on vinyl is always different from a digital mastering, even in the case of a DMM engraving (closer to the original masters)! Indeed, specialized mastering for this medium requires special attention to dynamics in order to make the most of the analog and therefore non-sampled character of the disc.
Also, light creaking noises may be heard, most of the time in a normal way. On the other hand, if your reading head jumps or big noises appear, first try to scratch your vinyl: this may be due to residue on your disc. Obviously check that these defects are present on all of your test pressings.
If these defects are persistent, then new engravings are requested from the factory until the test is conclusive. They will not be invoiced to you if the error comes directly from the manufacturer during the galvanic development, but may be in the opposite case.
Resell your test pressings with Diggers Factory !
The little extra of Diggers Factory is that we offer you to resell our 2 copies directly on our site: you automatically reap 75% of the profits! For many vinyl connoisseurs, the test pressing is a collector's item, as it is the first pressing ever made of your vinyl. Its rarity makes it a highly coveted record!