Glossary of acronyms and terminology for Vinyl Collectors

An explanation of the abbreviations, acronyms and terminology used in the domain of collecting vinyl records.

7" ( Inch )

means a 7-inch diameter, the smallest diameter used for vinyl records, mainly used for singles, although 7" EP's do exist. Mostly recorded at 45rpm, but some older UK records have been recorded at 33 1/3 RPM

Collector's are typically looking for 7" records with the picture sleeve in perfect condition. (On the other these singles with NO original sleeve are often worthless)

10" ( Inch )

A 10-inch vinyl record is a medium-sized disc typically used for Extended Play (EP) releases in the music industry. These records have a diameter of 10 inches, which is smaller than the more common 12-inch LP (Long Play) records and larger than the 7-inch singles.


Black Jacket ( Sleeve ) which is a type of record packaging where the record is enclosed in a plain black jacket or sleeve instead of a traditional printed album cover. "BJ" releases are often used for promotional purposes or as test pressings, and they are typically distributed in small quantities to record label executives or reviewers. In the vinyl record collecting community, black-jacket releases are sometimes sought after for their rarity and uniqueness, and they are considered to be collectible items.

AOR (Album Oriented Rock)

AOR stands for Album Oriented Rock, which is a radio format and genre of rock music that emerged in the late 1960s and gained popularity in the 1970s and 1980s. AOR is characterized by its emphasis on album-length recordings and a broad, mainstream appeal. The style features well-crafted, melodic songs with polished production values and a focus on hooks and harmonies. AOR artists often incorporate elements of pop, folk, and progressive rock, and the genre has been associated with acts like Fleetwood Mac, Boston, and Foreigner.


BOVEMA/EMI Haarlem, located in Holland, holds a significant place in the history of the European music industry. Its contribution within its time period's context is noteworthy, particularly during the era when physical music formats dominated the market.

BOVEMA (Bovema Negram) was a Dutch record company that merged with EMI (Electric and Musical Industries) in the 1970s, creating BOVEMA/EMI. This collaboration played a pivotal role in shaping the music landscape of the time. The 1970s and 1980s marked a period of transition in the music industry, with vinyl records reigning supreme. BOVEMA/EMI Haarlem actively participated in the production and distribution of vinyl records, making a significant impact on the music scene.

Vinyl records produced by BOVEMA/EMI Haarlem during this era were known for their quality and diverse range of artists. The facility in Haarlem became a hub for recording and manufacturing vinyl records, contributing to the flourishing music culture of the time. Artists across various genres found a platform through BOVEMA/EMI Haarlem, further enriching the European music scene.

The production processes at BOVEMA/EMI Haarlem reflected the craftsmanship and attention to detail inherent in the vinyl record industry. Skilled engineers and technicians worked diligently to ensure the highest audio quality, and the iconic EMI label became synonymous with musical excellence.


"Backed With" or "B-side With" indicates the flip side of a single, typically a vinyl record. In this context, it refers to the lesser-known track on the opposite side of the featured or A-side song. For example, "JOHN LENNON - Jealous Guy B/W Going Down On Love" signifies "Jealous Guy" as the primary A-side and "Going Down On Love" as the accompanying B-side.


"Cut Corner" refers to an album cover with one of its corners intentionally removed, often to indicate a discounted or sale item. This practice is common in the music industry to distinguish records offered at a reduced price. The cut corner serves as a visual indicator, making it clear that the album has undergone a markdown or promotional pricing.


La Chante Du Monde, is the oldest French music publishing house in existence. It was created in 1938 by Léon Moussinac. "Le Chant du Monde" is particularly known worldwide for having gathered the first collection of traditional music and ethnographic recordings. It commissioned composers to transcribe French oral traditions and music alike. ( Source: wikipedia )


"Cut Hole" denotes an album cover with a deliberately cut hole, typically employed to signify a discounted record. This alteration serves as a visual marker, indicating that the album is offered at a reduced price or as a promotional item. The cut hole is a distinct feature used by retailers to identify and highlight discounted merchandise.


"Club National du Disque" was a French record label that operated in the 1950s and 1960s. During its active years, the label contributed to the music scene by releasing various recordings. Specializing in diverse genres, it played a role in promoting and distributing music in France. The label's legacy reflects a snapshot of the vibrant French music landscape during that era.


"Cut Out" refers to a deleted item, often a record, that has been altered by the record company to prevent it from being sold at full price. The alteration may involve saw cutting, clipping, or drilling a distinctive mark on the item. This practice is commonly used to clear excess or discontinued stock and differentiate it as a discounted or promotional product.


"Les Discophiles Francais" a French record label founded by Henri Screpel and had their first period of activity from 1940 until 1958. It was bought by Ducretet Thomson and the catalog was sold to Pathé Marconi EMI in the late '70s.


A "die-cut" album cover or sleeve features a custom-cut area or hole, designed to showcase a picture disc, colored vinyl disc, or label without requiring removal from the sleeve. This unique design adds visual appeal, allowing collectors to display and appreciate the distinctive features of the vinyl record within the packaging, enhancing the overall aesthetic experience for music enthusiasts.

A "DeLuxe Cover" refers to a special or premium edition of an album cover. It typically features enhanced materials, elaborate design elements, or additional content. This version is often produced in limited quantities, making it a sought-after collector's item. The term "DeLuxe" signifies a higher quality or more luxurious presentation compared to the standard release, catering to fans and collectors.

A Double LP (Long Play) is an album that spans two vinyl records, typically due to its length or the desire for higher audio quality. This format allows for more extended musical content without compromising sound fidelity. Double LPs often come in a gatefold cover, which unfolds to reveal both records. The abbreviation "2LP" is commonly used to indicate this format on album covers, helping consumers identify multi-disc releases.

DMM - Direct Metal Mastering

Direct Metal Mastering (DMM) is a method of vinyl record mastering that was developed in the late 1970s as an alternative to the traditional lacquer disc cutting process. In DMM, the audio signal is cut directly onto a copper disc, which is then used as the stamper to create the final vinyl records.

The DMM process offers several advantages over lacquer cutting. One of the main advantages is that it results in a lower noise floor, which means that the overall sound quality is improved. Additionally, DMM produces records with better high-frequency response, improved stereo imaging, and greater durability.

During the DMM process, the copper disc is first coated with a thin layer of photo-sensitive material. The audio signal is then cut into the surface of the disc using a high-powered laser beam. Once the cutting is complete, the disc is developed to remove the unexposed photo-sensitive material, leaving behind the groove that represents the audio signal.

The resulting copper disc is then electroplated with a layer of nickel to create a stamper, which is used to press the final vinyl records. Because the DMM process creates a stamper with a smoother, more consistent surface than lacquer cutting, the resulting records are less prone to surface noise and other imperfections.

DMM is a high-quality and efficient method of vinyl mastering that is still used today by some mastering engineers and record pressing plants.


The EEC (European Economic Community) was an organization that was formed in 1957 to promote economic integration and cooperation among its member states. Its initial members were France, Germany, Italy, Belgium, the Netherlands, and Luxembourg. Over time, the EEC evolved into what is now known as the EU (European Union).


An EP (Extended Play) is a vinyl record containing two or three tracks on each side, offering more content than a single but less than a full album. EPs come in various diameters, including 7", 10", or 12". This format provides artists a versatile medium to release a concise collection of songs, catering to listeners who desire more than a single track but less than a full-length album.


An item "For Auction" signifies that it is available for sale through an auction process. Interested buyers can place bids on the item, and the highest bidder at the end of the auction wins the purchase. This format is commonly used in online platforms or traditional auction houses, allowing sellers to obtain the best possible price through competitive bidding.


A "Fold Out Cover," similar to a "Gatefold Cover," involves an album packaging design with an unfolding section. This format allows for expanded artwork, additional images, or information. Typically larger than standard covers, fold-out covers enhance the visual and tactile experience for vinyl records, providing fans with a more immersive and detailed presentation of the album's aesthetics.


Freakbeat is the name for rare, collectable, and obscure British Invasion records. Usually, these are rare British blues and garage rock, bands that sounded a bit like the Rolling Stones, Yardbirds, or the Bluesbreakers, but occasionally some of the tougher Merseybeat bands fit this category, too. The criteria for freakbeat is a little vague, and known basically to collectors who specialize in the style, but it generally is fairly obscure British Invasion of all


"For Sale" indicates an item is available for purchase. "Factory Sealed" or "Still Sealed" denotes an unopened product, often vinyl records, that remains sealed in its original packaging from the factory. This ensures the item's new and pristine condition, appealing to collectors and buyers who seek untouched merchandise with the assurance of being in its original, untouched state.


G - a ranking of a vinyl record or album cover usually based on Goldmine Grading for Viny Records. ( Background: the Goldmin grading for Vinyl was based on the grading of books. Book collection can be very old eg several centuries and good meant that these books were still in a acceptable condition. For vinyl records however good should only be used to complete your collection with a missing record, do not expect this grading to give a great sound. )

Gatefold , GF or FOC

A "Gatefold Cover," often abbreviated as GF or FOC (Fold-Out Cover), is a vinyl album packaging featuring a folded cover that unfolds to reveal additional artwork, images, or information. This design enhances the album's visual appeal and provides a larger canvas for creative expression. Gatefold covers are common in the music industry, adding a touch of sophistication and engagement to the vinyl experience.

Glam Metal

Glam Metal ( Not to be confused with Glam Rock ) is a subgenre of heavy metal that emerged in the late 1970s and reached its peak in the 1980s. It features flamboyant and androgynous looks with heavy makeup, teased hair, and spandex clothing. The music combines heavy guitar riffs and solos with pop sensibilities and catchy hooks, and is characterized by upbeat and party-oriented themes, harmonized vocals, and polished production techniques. Some of the most popular bands include Bon Jovi, Poison, Motley Crue, Guns N' Roses, and Cinderella. Glam metal's popularity was driven in part by the rise of MTV and music videos.

Glam Rock

Glam rock (not to be confused with Glam Metal) is a music genre that emerged in the early 1970s, primarily in the United Kingdom. It is characterized by its extravagant and theatrical style, combining elements of rock, pop, and often incorporating elements of androgyny and flamboyance in both the music and the performers' image.

Musically, glam rock drew influences from various genres, including rock and roll, pop, and rhythm and blues. It featured catchy melodies, anthemic choruses, and a fusion of electric guitars, prominent drums, and driving rhythms. The sound was often characterized by a mix of glamor and aggression, with a touch of campiness.

Glam rock musicians embraced a highly visual and theatrical approach, using flamboyant clothing, makeup, and hairstyles. Their image often featured glitter, sequins, platform boots, and colorful and outrageous outfits. Androgyny was a prominent feature of the genre, with male artists adopting feminine aesthetics and challenging traditional gender norms.

Lyrically, glam rock songs explored themes of escapism, individualism, rebellion, and sexual freedom. The lyrics often had a sense of fantasy and were delivered with a larger-than-life attitude.

Some of the most notable glam rock artists include David Bowie, T. Rex, Roxy Music, Slade, Sweet, Gary Glitter, and Alice Cooper. These artists not only achieved commercial success but also left a lasting impact on the music industry and influenced subsequent genres such as punk rock and new wave.

Glam rock's popularity waned by the mid-1970s as musical tastes shifted, but its influence can still be seen today in the works of many contemporary artists. The genre's fusion of music, fashion, and performance continues to inspire and captivate audiences, making glam rock an important and enduring part of music history.

Glitter Rock

Glitter rock, a short-lived genre in the mid-1970s, was an extreme exploration of the fantasy-side of the reality-fantasy parents of heavy metal. Was staylized by the flashy appearance of the performers. The music merged theatrics and rock music of the early to late 1970's. There was as well a influence of the idea of alien life and an ever changing image in performance, music and artist in general.

HQ 180

High Quality Vinyl LPs which weights 180 grams. The High Quality 180 gram premium format offers a significant improvement in the sound of recordings. The HQ-180 is 50% heavier with 50% more mass, providing a more substantial platform for the phono pick-up system. The result is a more stable, focused image with tighter, deeper bass, crisp transient attack and improved channel separation. The HQ-180 is not only thicker and heavier, the new technology used to press the HQ-180 yields an even quieter surface, providing reduced noise and distortion components


"Highly Rated" or "Recommended" for vinyl record albums suggests that the albums have received positive reviews, critical acclaim, or endorsements from music enthusiasts. These designations indicate that the albums are considered noteworthy in terms of sound quality, artistic merit, or overall appeal, making them recommended choices for vinyl collectors and listeners seeking quality musical experiences.


The abbreviation I.S.O. stands for "In Search Of", in also means "ISO" in vinyl record collecting refers to the term "Isolation," meaning a recording where background noise and other distractions have been minimized or eliminated. An "ISO" record is usually made from a direct transfer from the master tape to vinyl, with the aim of preserving the quality of the original recording. In vinyl record collecting, ISO records are often sought after and considered high-quality releases.

Italo Disco

Italo disco was a style of electronic dance music during the 80s. Though many of the artists came from Italy as the name implies, the term is sometimes used for groups in other European countries in conjunction with euro disco. Italo disco had a more synth pop/electro feel to it than American disco, which had funk and soul roots

LC / Labelcode

Labelcode is a unique 4-digit or 5-digit music label identification code that is assigned by Gesellschaft zur Verwertung von Leistungsschutzrechten ( GVL ), Germany. Since January 2017, Labelcode is no longer mandatory. Labelcode is still used in some occasions, for example, CD publishing. ( Source: Wikipedia )


Krautrock is a genre of experimental rock music that originated in West Germany in the late 1960s and early 1970s. The term "krautrock" was originally a somewhat derogatory term used by the British music press to describe the unconventional and experimental music being made by German bands at the time.

Krautrock bands often incorporated elements of electronic music, jazz, avant-garde, and traditional German music, and rejected the traditional rock band format and song structures. They were influenced by a variety of sources, including the psychedelic rock of the 1960s, minimalist composers such as Terry Riley and Steve Reich, and the German art and literary movements of the time.

Some of the most well-known krautrock bands include Can , Neu! , Faust, Kraftwerk , and Tangerine Dream, among others. The genre had a significant impact on the development of electronic and experimental music, and its influence can be heard in a wide variety of genres, from punk rock to ambient music.


"Le Club Français du Disque" was a French record label that operated from 1953 to 1968. During its active years, the label contributed to the music industry, releasing a variety of recordings. Its legacy reflects a snapshot of the vibrant French music scene during that period, showcasing artists and genres that were influential in shaping the cultural landscape of the time.


"L'Oiseau-Lyre" was a French music publishing house established in 1932 by Louise Hanson-Dyer. In 1948, it evolved into a recording label, gaining prominence for its focus on ancient and baroque music. Louise Hanson-Dyer's dedication to historical authenticity made "L'Oiseau-Lyre" a significant contributor to the preservation and promotion of early music, leaving a lasting impact on the classical recording industry.


The LP record, also known as the long-playing record or vinyl record, is a format for storing and playing music that was introduced in the late 1940s. It quickly became popular and remained the dominant music format for several decades until the rise of digital music in the 1980s and 1990s. Despite its decline in popularity, the LP record remains a beloved format among audiophiles and music collectors.

The LP record is a disc made of vinyl, a type of plastic that is durable and flexible. The disc is typically 12 inches in diameter and plays at a speed of 33⅓ revolutions per minute (RPM). The LP record can hold up to 30 minutes of music on each side, making it an ideal format for albums and longer musical works.

LP records are played using a turntable, which rotates the disc at the correct speed while a stylus, or needle, reads the grooves in the vinyl. The vibrations created by the stylus are amplified and played through speakers, producing the sound that we hear.

One of the benefits of the LP record format is its ability to reproduce high-quality sound. The physical grooves on the vinyl allow for a wider range of frequencies and dynamics than digital formats, which can sometimes sound compressed or lacking in depth. The warmth and richness of vinyl sound have been appreciated by music enthusiasts for decades, leading to a resurgence in vinyl sales in recent years.

The LP record has also been credited with revolutionizing the way music is consumed and enjoyed. Before the LP record, singles and 78 RPM records were the primary formats for recorded music. These formats could only hold a few minutes of music, making it difficult to enjoy longer works like symphonies or concept albums. With the advent of the LP record, musicians and record labels were able to create more complex and ambitious works that could be experienced in their entirety.

In addition to its audio quality and ability to handle longer musical works, the LP record has also become a beloved collectible item. Record collectors appreciate the unique artwork and packaging that often accompanies LP records, including gatefold sleeves, inner sleeves, and inserts. Some LP records are rare and valuable, making them highly sought after by collectors.

Despite its decline in popularity, the LP record remains an important part of music history and culture. Its impact on the way we listen to and appreciate music cannot be overstated, and its legacy continues to be felt in the music industry today.


"La Voce del Padrone" is the Italian counterpart of the iconic "His Master's Voice" (HMV) trademark. Used by the Italian subsidiary of the Gramophone Company, the logo features a dog listening to a gramophone, symbolizing high-quality sound reproduction. This Italian version, like its global counterpart, became synonymous with excellence in the recording industry.


"La Voz de Su Amo" is the Spanish rendition of the famous "His Master's Voice" (HMV) trademark. Adopted by the Spanish affiliate of the Gramophone Company, the logo showcases a dog listening to a gramophone, symbolizing superior sound quality. Much like the global brand, "La Voz de Su Amo" became synonymous with excellence and prestige in the Spanish-speaking recording industry.


"La Voix de son Maître" is the French adaptation of the iconic "His Master's Voice" (HMV) trademark. Utilized by the French division of the Gramophone Company, the logo features a dog attentively listening to a gramophone, symbolizing superior sound reproduction. Much like its global counterpart, "La Voix de son Maître" became synonymous with quality and distinction in the French recording industry.


A mastering engineer is a professional who specializes in the final stages of audio production, specifically the process of preparing recorded music for commercial release. The role of a mastering engineer is to ensure that a recorded song or album sounds its best across different playback systems and devices, and to make any final tweaks and adjustments necessary to produce a polished, cohesive final product.

The mastering process typically involves several key steps, including equalization (adjusting the balance of various frequency ranges), dynamic range compression (reducing the difference between the loudest and quietest parts of the recording), and stereo enhancement (widening the stereo image of the recording). In addition, the mastering engineer may also make decisions about track sequencing, add fades and crossfades, and prepare the final product for replication and distribution.

The role of the mastering engineer is critical to the overall quality of a recorded work, and a good mastering engineer can bring out the best in a recording, making it sound clear, balanced, and dynamic. A mastering engineer must have a strong ear for detail, a thorough understanding of audio technology, and the ability to make decisions that enhance the overall sound of a recording.

Matrix Number

The number or numbers in the run-off groove of a record or around the centre ring on the playing side of a compact disc. Identifies a particular pressing from other pressings of the same item. For example, the only way to tell which mix of Frankie Goes to Hollywood's 'Relax' 12" you may have (there are three different ones with identical labels) is purely by the matrix in the run off groove. See also: stamper code


Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab has been the undisputed pioneer and leader in audiophile recordings since the company's inception in 1977. Established by dedicated audiophiles, Mobile Fidelity's first and foremost goal was to offer faithfully reproduced high fidelity recordings that would compliment the numerous advances occurring in audio delivery systems. Throughout its history, Mobile Fidelity has remained true to this goal, pioneering state-of-the-art technologies and setting audiophile standards that remain in place today.

M, Mono

Mono, short for monaural, is a type of audio that is reproduced through a single channel of sound. Unlike stereo sound, which uses two channels to create a sense of spatial separation and directionality, mono sound can be played through a single speaker or headphone driver.

It is also commonly used in older audio technologies, such as vinyl records and cassette tapes, which were typically recorded and played back in mono.

While mono sound lacks the spatial separation and directionality of stereo sound, it can still provide a high-quality audio experience when properly recorded and played back through high-quality equipment. In fact, many audio professionals prefer mono recordings for certain types of music and other audio content, as it can provide a more focused and intimate sound than stereo.

Overall, mono sound is a simpler and more straightforward type of audio that can be suitable for many types of content, while stereo sound provides a more immersive and spatially separated listening experience.


"N.C." or "Neutral Cover" refers to a plain or generic album sleeve without elaborate artwork or images, serving as the opposite of a picture sleeve. These covers are devoid of specific graphics, allowing for a more straightforward presentation. The focus is on the music, making N.C. sleeves a practical and cost-effective option for record packaging, often used for promotional or budget releases.

"N.C." may also stand for "No Cover," indicating that the album is sold without a protective or decorative sleeve. In this context, it means the absence of any cover artwork or packaging. This term is commonly used to describe records sold without the traditional protective outer sleeve, presenting the vinyl itself without additional visual elements or design.


"Near Mint" is a grading classification for vinyl records or album covers, commonly following the Goldmine Grading standard. It signifies that the item is in nearly perfect condition, exhibiting minimal signs of use or wear. Records in Near Mint condition generally have no visible scratches, scuffs, or flaws, providing collectors and enthusiasts with a high-quality and well-maintained item.


Non Original Cover or No Original Centre , can refer to an non original album cover and is also a UK record-collecting term meaning "No Original Centre" and is used as a reference to 7" records which have had their centre spindle hole enlarged by punching out (or dinking). Dinking is a post-manufacture change to a 7" record to make it playable on a jukebox. When a release with a push-out centre has had its centre removed then that is a form of dinking.

NO-PS No Picture Sleeve

"No-PS" is a term commonly used in the world of vinyl records to describe a record that does not come with a picture sleeve.

A picture sleeve is an outer cover or jacket that contains artwork, photographs, or other visual elements, usually featuring the album or artist's name and the tracklist. Picture sleeves were often included with vinyl records during the peak of their popularity in the 1960s and 1970s, but not all records came with them.

When a record is described as "no-PS," it means that it is being sold or offered for sale without the original picture sleeve. This can happen for a variety of reasons, such as the sleeve being lost or damaged over time, or the seller acquiring the record without the sleeve.

While a picture sleeve can add to the collectibility and value of a vinyl record, many collectors are willing to purchase "no-PS" records if the vinyl itself is in good condition and the price is reasonable

NWOBHM - New Wave Of British Heavy Metal

NWOBHM stands for "New Wave of British Heavy Metal", a movement that emerged in the late 1970s and early 1980s in the United Kingdom. It is considered a subgenre of heavy metal music and was characterized by fast-paced riffs, hard-hitting drums, and a distinctive, raw sound.

The NWOBHM movement was a reaction to the more polished sound of mainstream heavy metal at the time, such as the popular bands like Black Sabbath, Deep Purple, and Led Zeppelin. NWOBHM bands were typically made up of younger, less experienced musicians who were inspired by punk rock as well as traditional heavy metal.

Some of the most notable NWOBHM bands include Iron Maiden, Judas Priest, Def Leppard, Saxon, and Diamond Head. These bands, along with many others, helped to define the sound of the movement and set the stage for the rise of heavy metal in the 1980s.

The NWOBHM movement also had a significant impact on the development of other genres, such as thrash metal and power metal. The fast, aggressive riffs and raw energy of NWOBHM bands inspired a new generation of musicians, who took those elements and pushed them to even greater extremes.

Although the NWOBHM movement declined in popularity by the mid-1980s, its influence can still be felt today in the music of countless heavy metal bands around the world. The movement also helped to establish heavy metal as a legitimate genre of music, paving the way for its continued growth and evolution over the years.


An OBI is a paper strip which is usually wrapped around the left side of the LPs or the CDs. The purpose of the OBI is mainly for the translation of the title into Japanese and to give additional information on the product.Many OBIs feature eye-catching artwork, photography, or design elements that complement the main jacket, making them visually appealing to collectors. Obi-strips are very rare on Japanese items dating from before the late 1960s.


An "Original Inner Sleeve" or "Custom Inner Sleeve" refers to a personalized insert within a vinyl album. This inner sleeve is uniquely designed, featuring custom artwork, photos, or lyrics, enhancing the overall aesthetic and providing additional content for the listener. It serves as a creative extension of the album, offering a more immersive experience and making the packaging distinctive.


"Out of Print" indicates that a recording, whether in LP or CD format, is no longer in production. Once a release becomes out of print, it means that new copies are no longer being made or distributed. This status often increases the item's rarity, and collectors may seek out-of-print recordings for their scarcity and historical value in the music market.

OST (Original SoundTrack)

OST stands for Original Soundtrack, which is a recording of the music and/or dialogue from a movie, television show, or other media production. The soundtrack is typically released as an album that includes songs and music featured in the production, as well as any score or incidental music composed specifically for the production.

The purpose of an OST is to enhance the viewer's experience by providing additional emotional and contextual cues through music and dialogue. For example, a dramatic scene in a movie may be accompanied by a somber or intense piece of music, while a romantic scene may be accompanied by a soft, romantic ballad.

OSTs are often an important aspect of a film's marketing and promotion, as the soundtrack can generate interest and buzz among audiences. Many popular songs have become hits as a result of their inclusion in a popular movie or television show.

OSTs can also be important cultural artifacts, as they provide a snapshot of the music and popular culture of a particular era. For example, the soundtrack to the 1977 film "Saturday Night Fever" is often cited as an important record of the disco era, while the soundtrack to the 1992 film "The Bodyguard" helped to popularize Whitney Houston's music and cement her status as a pop icon.


"Punch Hole" or "Promo Hole" refers to a hole punched into one corner of an album cover, typically done to mark a discounted record. Similar to a cut-out, this alteration indicates that the item has undergone a price reduction. The punch hole serves as a visual identifier, distinguishing the album as a promotional or discounted product, often appealing to budget-conscious buyers.

Picture Disc (PD)

"Picture discs" are a unique and highly collectible format of vinyl records that have been popular since the 1970s. They are characterized by the use of full-color artwork or photographs printed directly onto the surface of the record, creating a stunning visual effect.

A picture disc is a type of vinyl record that has a printed design or image on one or both sides of the disc. Unlike a regular vinyl record, which typically has a plain black or colored surface, a picture disc can feature artwork, photographs, or other visual elements that are directly printed onto the vinyl surface.

The process of creating a picture disc involves pressing a layer of transparent vinyl on top of the printed design or image. This results in a record that not only plays music but also functions as a work of art, with the visual elements visible as the disc spins on a turntable.

Picture discs have been popular among collectors and music enthusiasts since the 1970s, and many artists have released special edition picture discs as a way to promote their music and offer fans a unique and collectible item.


A picture sleeve is a type of paper or cardboard cover that is used to protect and display a vinyl record. Unlike a plain paper sleeve, a picture sleeve typically features artwork, photographs, or other visual elements that are directly related to the music on the record.

Picture sleeves are often used as a marketing tool to promote a new release, as they can attract attention and help to create a memorable and recognizable image for an artist or band. They can also be used to provide additional information about the music on the record, such as lyrics, liner notes, or production credits.

Picture sleeves became popular in the 1960s and 1970s, when the music industry was booming and record labels were looking for ways to stand out from the competition. Many classic albums from this era were released with iconic picture sleeves, such as The Beatles' "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" and Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon". Today, picture sleeves remain a popular and collectible item among vinyl enthusiasts


S or SS

An SS (Still Sealed) vinyl record refers to a record that is still in its original factory-sealed condition. It means that the record has never been opened or played since it was originally packaged and remains in its pristine, untouched state. SS records are highly sought after by collectors and are considered to be in the best possible condition since they have not been exposed to potential damage or wear over time.


The S.I.A.E. stamp on Italian vinyl records refers to the Società Italiana degli Autori ed Editori (Italian Society of Authors and Publishers). It is a stamp indicating that the record has been registered and licensed with the Italian copyright society. The S.I.A.E. is responsible for collecting and distributing royalties on behalf of artists, songwriters, and publishers in Italy. The presence of the S.I.A.E. stamp ensures that the record is authorized and compliant with copyright regulations in Italy.


A single vinyl record, also known as a "single", is a type of vinyl record format that typically contains one song on each side. It is smaller in size compared to a full-length album or LP (long-playing) record. Singles are commonly released as a promotional tool for an artist's latest song or as a standalone release featuring popular tracks. They often come with a large center hole and are played at 45 revolutions per minute (RPM) on a turntable.


The term "Sticker on Back Cover" (SOB) refers to a sticker affixed to the back cover of a vinyl record album. These stickers can vary in content and purpose. They may include promotional stickers with information about the album, such as hit singles, special features, or limited editions. They can also include pricing stickers, record store promotional stickers, or other markings used to identify the album or provide additional information to potential buyers. The presence of a sticker on the back cover can sometimes affect the collectability and value of the record. Very often this sticker was used to display the price of the record.


The term "Sticker on Cover Cover" (SOC) refers to a sticker affixed to the back cover of a vinyl record album. These stickers can vary in content and purpose. They may include promotional stickers with information about the album, such as hit singles, special features, or limited editions. They can also include pricing stickers, record store promotional stickers, or other markings used to identify the album or provide additional information to potential buyers. The presence of a sticker on the back cover can sometimes affect the collectability and value of the record.

S , ST, S/T, Stereo

Stereo is a term used to describe audio that is reproduced through two channels of sound. These two channels are often referred to as the left and right channels, and they are used to create a more immersive audio experience by providing spatial separation and directionality to the sounds being played.

In a stereo audio system, the left and right channels are typically played through separate speakers or headphone drivers, which are positioned at different locations relative to the listener. This allows the listener to perceive sounds as coming from different directions, which can enhance the sense of realism and immersion in music, movies, and other audio content.

Stereo sound is typically recorded using two microphones that are placed at a distance from each other to capture sound from different directions. During playback, the signals from these microphones are mixed and played back through the left and right channels to recreate the spatial separation and directionality of the original sound.

Stereo sound is widely used in music, film, television, and other forms of media, and it has become the standard for most consumer audio systems. In recent years, advancements in technology have allowed for even more advanced forms of spatial audio, such as surround sound and 3D audio, which offer even greater immersion and realism.


A stamper is used to "press" the vinyl. Pressing vinyl records over and over again is hard on metal stampers. Causing them to wear out, split, become scratched, etc. For a regular weight LP, one can press approximately 1000 records per set of stampers before we start to lose sound quality. For HQ-180 records, the general rule of thumb is one set of stamper per 500 records, due to the longer cycle time and added pressure needed to make the thicker record. Therefore, if you have larger orders, more stampers are needed to complete that order with the highest quality surface integrity. For instance, no one wants an LP from a stamper where the grooves have been damaged due to overuse.


"Tape On Cover" refers to the use of adhesive tape on a vinyl record album cover, often done to repair tears, splits, or damage. It's a makeshift solution to preserve the cover's integrity. Conversely, "Tear on Cover" signifies damage or a rip on the album cover itself, which may be a result of wear, mishandling, or age.


A "Test Pressing" is an early vinyl record produced in small quantities before the official release. Typically, it is used for quality control purposes to evaluate the sound quality and ensure there are no manufacturing defects. Test pressings are sent to artists, producers, or record labels for approval and are often considered rare and collectible due to their limited production.

Uncut Picture Disc

An item which when commercially released was a shaped disc, but for test pressing purposes has been left circular with either a clear or coloured surround around the actual picture. Only ever a handful in circulation.


"Various Artists" denotes a compilation album featuring tracks by different musicians or bands. These collections showcase a diverse range of music styles, genres, or themes, allowing listeners to explore and discover multiple artists within a single release. Often curated around a common theme, these compilations offer a convenient way to sample various musical contributions in one cohesive package.


"Very Good" is a grading classification in the Vinyl Grading Guide, indicating that a record is well-maintained with minor signs of wear. It may have some surface marks, light scratches, or slight warping, but these issues should not significantly impact sound quality. Overall, a "Very Good" record remains in acceptable condition and is suitable for enjoyable listening.


A "White Label Promo" refers to a vinyl record with a plain white label, typically indicating it is for promotional use only. These releases lack the commercial artwork and details found on regular releases, serving as advance copies distributed to radio stations, DJs, or industry insiders. The absence of retail packaging and the white label signify its promotional nature.

White Label

A promotional pressing with a completely blank label denoting it is promo only. May also have unique black on white printed labels with just artist & title information or "A" & "B" symbols. Some white labels have different catalogue numbers to domestic releases


"Writing on Back-Cover" indicates that there is handwritten or printed information on the back of a vinyl record album cover. This may include annotations, signatures, or details such as track listings or release notes. While some collectors prefer pristine covers, others may find handwritten information adds character or historical context to the album.


"WOC," or "Writing on Cover," indicates there is handwritten or printed information on the cover of a vinyl record album. This may include annotations, signatures, or details. Alternatively, "Without Cover" signifies the absence of the album's original cover. Both terms provide information about the condition and completeness of the album packaging in the context of vinyl record collecting. See Also: NC No Cover


"Writing on Label" denotes handwritten or printed markings on the label of a vinyl record. These inscriptions may include catalog numbers, DJ notes, or other details. While some collectors prefer clean labels, others appreciate these markings as part of the record's history. The presence of writing on the label can influence the perceived condition and desirability of a vinyl record.


"Water Stain on Cover" refers to a discoloration or mark caused by exposure to water on the outer surface of a vinyl record album. This may affect the cover's appearance, causing staining, warping, or damage. Such flaws, often considered imperfections, are taken into account when assessing the condition and value of the album for collectors and buyers.


"Want to Buy" signifies the desire to purchase a specific item or product. This expression is commonly used in online marketplaces, classified ads, or personal inquiries to convey that the speaker is actively seeking to acquire the mentioned item. It serves as an open request for sellers or individuals with the sought-after product to come forward with offers or arrangements.