The weird thing for me about a record looping is that it is something I associate with horror movies. You know, some dude or girl is listening to tunes having a good time, and then it starts looping the same part over and over again before something spooky happens!
That is why today we are taking a look at what you can do if your turntable is looping. It will keep your listening great and also fight off any demonic possession… well, let’s just work on trying to stop that annoying looping first. I have had this happen on more than a few records over the years and it never gets any less annoying!
Try Playing With The Anti-Skate
Before we get to the actual record itself, let’s have a think if it is your actual turntable that is causing the looping problem. I found this pretty neat video where the guy talks about anti-skate and how you can easily adjust it on your turntable. The arm always wants to find its way to the center of the record, that is the way that it is designed.
However, sometimes the anti-skate can be a tad on the finicky side and it may be set too high or not high enough. This potentially could cause it to get hung up on a groove and keep looping the same bit over and over again. I had this happen once while listening to Run to the Hills by Iron Maiden on a brand new Number of the Beast vinyl record and it turned out my anti-skating had been messed with by one of the kids. If you find that many records are looping at around the same time, I would say chances are it is something to do with your actual turntable.
Ok, so before we go any further, I have to say that there is a lot of risks involved when it comes to messing with your vinyl records and trying to fix things like a look yourself. So please note that anything you do to your vinyl record is on you. These are methods that have worked for some people, but you are putting your records at risk by doing them so it is up to you if you want to try them or not.
Pressing Down With An Old Stylus
First thing, this can potentially damage your vinyl so you have been warned! Also, do not do this with the actual stylus that you are currently using. I have a few of these cheap cartridges and styluses laying around that I use for testing and doing stuff that is less than pleasant. They are pretty handy to have if you are a vinyl enthusiast as they prevent you from breaking a good cartridge or stylus.
Once you have figured out the exact place the loop is happening on your record. Use the old or cheap stylus and press down into the loop, you want to be quite firm, but not so firm that the actual cartridge is rubbing against the vinyl. This can work out whatever is causing the loop and I have read more than one story online where people have said it did work for them. If you are at the point where you are thinking of just replacing the record anyway, you have nothing to lose by trying this first.
Is The Record Scratched
I think that vinyl is way more durable than many people realize, but vinyl scratches are still a thing. A few months back, I purchased this awesome collection of Bon Jovi 7-inch singles and more than a few of them had some light scratches that did not affect the play apart from the odd hiss or pop. A couple did have severe scratches and this caused looping. Let me tell you if there was a quick, easy and actual way for the average joe to fix a scratched record, vinyl I feel would be a heck of a lot cheaper!
Sometimes if the scratch is really bad, you have to just move on and say goodbye to that record and buy a new one. Hey, I know it sucks, but it is what it is. If you purchase it from a store or on eBay then I would try and get my money back.
Groove Is In The Dirt
Sorry for my terrible pun on Groove is in the Heart (which is probably stuck in your head now) however, the amount of time giving a record a good clean will fix any problems it has is just staggering. Going back to those Bon Jovi singles I just mentioned before, some of them were over 30 years old and had certainly been through the wringer. I gave them all a good clean and you would not believe the amount of dirt and other crud that came out of some of those grooves.
A while back we looked at how to clean your vinyl records and I highly recommend that you check that out. I would also suggest that you consider purchasing some vinyl record cleaning tools which will not just help you clean your records. These are designed for cleaning records in mind. Some people will use a toothbrush or a toothpick and that can work, but I have always thought that was a little bit on the risky side if you ask me.
Perhaps It Is Time To Upgrade?
If you ask my wife, I am always looking for an excuse to buy a new cartridge, turntable, or record. However, if you are big into your vinyl collecting rather than have the stress of trying to mess around with stuff could be just what you need to do to start enjoying listening to your music again. We have a ton of turntable reviews where we look at turntables at every end of the pricing spectrum.
If not a new record player, it could be time to say goodbye to that particular record. We live in a golden age of vinyl. For example, one of my all time favorite albums is Appetite for Destruction by Guns N Roses. You would not believe the number of times I have purchased a vinyl copy of this album! The point I am trying to make is that sometimes you have to just move on from that loop and buy the record again.