How do our favorite songs make their way into vinyl records? The team over at WIRED visits Third Man Pressing in Detroit to document the particularly labor-intensive production process. From adding the finicky lacquer coating to etching the matrix number by hand, the undertaking requires at least 14 steps before the album is packed and shipped, and each record passes through numerous sets of hands on the production floor. As the music industry becomes increasingly digital, the cutting process remains remarkably analog. “Vinyl is in the real world. It’s not something that exists only on your computer or your phone. It’s three-dimensional,” says one of the pressing plant’s engineers.
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