Vinyl sales are up, way up. New pressing plants are coming online for the first time in decades. Everyone’s happy, right? Not really. The issues lie with something called “electroplating.” From Fact Mag:
The labels that never stopped releasing vinyl records, and the labels who saved the production infrastructure from bankruptcy, now see themselves trapped within a highly competitive industry that is attempting, by hell or high water, to find its footing with a few remaining manufacturers that simply cannot meet demand. The point of failure, however, is not limited to securing capacity in the pressing plants. The problems start a long time before this process begins.
Electroplating, a process which involves coating the master lacquer in a metal layer to produce stampers, is time-intensive and requires highly trained personnel. Those who have learned electroplating are still a long way from being able to prepare the lacquer – the lengthy process requires a great deal of experience and expertise. Only then can it be guaranteed that the music sounds how it is supposed to sound. And all this has to happen quickly – when the music is cut to the lacquer, it can’t be stored indefinitely. A time period of over two weeks is considered to be problematic.
Wow. So too much success could breed…failure? Read the whole article here.