Sony Music To Open Vinyl Pressing Plant in Japan

Sony to make vinyl records again after 30-year hiatus

Sony to make vinyl records again after 30-year hiatus

Three decades after it abandoned vinyl production, Sony will start making records again amid surging demand. Sony stopped its in-house vinyl production in 1989, relying on outsourcing to focus on CD production instead.

The company installed record-cutting equipment at a Tokyo recording studio in February, allowing them to produced masters from which vinyl records are created.

Sony has been scrambling to find older engineers familiar with how to make records, said the Nikkei newspaper in Japan. While that method is no longer the norm, Sony have taken their first step in bringing it back, as they have revealed that they will open a new production center in Japan. Meanwhile, data from the U.S.'s Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) shows total LP and EP revenues in the US have risen from $88.9 million in 2010 to $429.7 million in 2016. It's a rise so rapid that, in Japan at least, the remaining factory-there's only one-pumping out vinyl, Toyokasei, can't keep up, according to a Nikkei report.

According to estimates, revenue for the industry will exceed a billion USA dollars this year, and according to the British Phonographic Industry (BPI), vinyl sales hit a 25-year high of more than three million in 2016.

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Sony's biggest challenge is the lack of engineers experienced in making records.

In April this year a report showed that consumers seem to be finding a balance between classic records they want to re-visit on vinyl, and new releases that they listen to first on streaming services.

Orders will also be accepted from outside record labels.