Detroit opens first new vinyl record pressing plant in a half century

(February 23, 2017) Vinyl lover, rise up! The City of Detroit is celebrating the LP by opening its first vinyl record factory in a half century. It is the creation of White Stripes leader Jack White and it will be housed in 10,000 square feet behind his new Third Man Records store in Midtown Detroit.

At its peak, the plant will be able to press 15,000 vinyl albums per day and will employ 50 people. The Detroit native White consciously went to a semi-automated (rather than full automated) process, so that he could hire local Detroiters to work at the factory.

(February 23, 2017) Vinyl lover, rise up! The City of Detroit is celebrating the LP by opening its first vinyl record factory in a half century. It is the creation of White Stripes leader Jack White and it will be housed in 10,000 square feet behind his new Third Man Records store in Midtown Detroit.

At its peak, the plant will be able to press 15,000 vinyl albums per day and will employ 50 people. The Detroit native White consciously went to a semi-automated (rather than full automated) process, so that he could hire local Detroiters to work at the factory.

In a decade of significant decreases in music sold via CD and mp3, vinyl has bucked the trend, with double digit percentage increases in sales each year, now representing over 10% of physical products sold. Due to the lack of vinyl manufacturing plants, artist have had difficulty getting their music pressed and opportunity has been lost. Importantly the Third Man Records pressing plant will be one of the first in the US with all new equipment, rather than reconditioned machines from the 60s and 70s. These machines will have a level of precision and speed that will result in excellent presses that will capture both new music and reissued master tapes beautifully.

White’s love letter to vinyl music fans opens this weekend and will be designed so that fans will be able to see the entire pressing process. Check out the video below, posted by Crain’s Detroit Business, to see the record pressing in action.

By Chris Rizik

 
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