New Vinyl Versions of Beatles’ Albums on the Way

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Though EMI put considerable effort into both the sound and packaging of the remastered Beatles catalog in 2009, and then staked out a new market with its iTunes downloads in 2010, many fans of the group have argued that such newfangled ways of hearing the band are inauthentic – that the experience just isn’t the same on anything but vinyl, the format on which the albums were originally released.

The arguments, heard regularly since the introduction of CDs in 1983, are familiar: many listeners find that music sounds warmer, more rounded and more natural on vinyl than in digital form, and you can’t argue with their preferences for 12-inch-by-12-inch cover art over the shrunken booklets that come with CDs, or the on-screen versions sold with the downloads.

Vinyl enthusiasts will get their way on Nov. 13, when the Beatles’ stereo catalog will be reissued both as a series of separate albums – the original LPs, using the original British track sequences, plus a two-disc “Past Masters” set that includes all the singles and other non-LP tracks – and as a box set that also includes a lavishly illustrated, 252-page, LP-size hardbound book by the BBC producer Kevin Howlett....

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