Vinyl vs Digital Music: Which Is Better?
vinyl disc
Photo by Jack Hamilton on Unsplash

Vinyl vs Digital Music: Which Is Better?

Zoe Kramer February 28, 2023

The merits of vinyl records compared with digital and streaming music have often been hotly debated. Some swear on vinyl, while others prefer the quality of digital files. But which is actually better? There are a number of reasons why one may be better suited to you than the other, depending on the type of music you listen to and your personal preferences. So here is a rundown of the pros and cons of both.

Photo by blocks on Unsplash

See also: What Is Spotify Taste Profile? Explaining The New Feature

Why Digital Might Be The Right Choice

Loudness can be a major factor in the vinyl vs digital music debate. If you’re looking for a big dynamic range, digital music is going to offer more than a vinyl will. Digital music also has a “clean” sound that many people prefer to the sound of vinyl. Vinyl records have a “rumble” sound underlying the music, which is the mechanical noise of the record player’s mechanism against the record. This tends to get more pronounced with wear and tear. So if this is a sound you don’t like, it might be best to stick with digital. In addition, vinyls require care and upkeep to prevent them from getting scratched or worn, so if you want to skip this fuss, digital music is an option that requires none of the same effort to preserve quality.

Why Vinyl Might Be The Right Choice

Another factor in the vinyl vs digital music debate are certain qualities of sound. Many people choose vinyl because it offers a “warmth” that digital recordings don’t. If you don’t like the “flatness” of digital music files, you may find more luck with trying vinyl instead. The sound you get from vinyl is imperfect, but for some, therein lies the appeal. Vinyl pressing is a very different process from creating a digital file, and the fully analog nature of it means you lose less of the original recording. Also, if you’re interested in speed variations, this is something that vinyl can offer.

Plus, listening to vinyl creates a certain experience of listening to music. It can be fun to browse different record shops and build up a collection of your favourite records. With digital music, you don’t get to collect and curate in the same way. Owning your music can be an advantage, and you can make a little extra cash by reselling any vinyls you no longer want.


There’s no right or wrong answer in this debate — it’s simply a matter of personal preference. However, trying out a range of audio experiences can clue you into things you might otherwise have missed out on.

See also: When And Where is Parklife Festival 2023? Full Line Up Announced

Have something to tell us about this article?
Let us know
Zoe Kramer has been writing for GRV Media’s student-centric website Freshered since October 2022 and is now also contributing to HITC. She graduated from Cardiff University in 2022 with a BA in Journalism, Media and English Literature. During her time in university, she worked for her student newspaper as well as completing an internship with a book publisher. She has also written and continues to write book and theatre reviews. She is excited to now be pursuing a career as a journalist and learning something new every day. In particular, she loves writing about student life, books, the Internet, and travel. Originally from the United States, she is enjoying living abroad in the UK.