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FAQ - Questions about the Restoration Process
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Questions about the Restoration Process:

bulletRestoration Process
bulletHow long will this process take?
bulletI am spending $60 to overnight my recordings to you. Will your processing time be less?
bulletCan you fix all types of damage to recordings?
bulletCan you guarantee that you will eliminate every single pop?  Can you guarantee that there will be absolutely no skips in a record?
bulletWhat should I choose: Transfer Only or Restoration?
bulletI have some RealAudio/MP3 files I would like restored to full sound.  Can you do it?

Q:  How long will this process take?

A:

- About two to three weeks at our studios.   This is an average time, based on an average work-load.  "About" gives us some latitude.  If the order is very simple, it may take less time to complete.   If during a certain week we receive a number of orders that is way above average, it will take longer to complete your order.
- Large orders (50 recordings or more) will take longer.
- Complex orders (very noisy recordings, multiple source recordings, custom restorations) and "special requests" orders will take longer.  Very complex restoration jobs may take several months to complete.
- Recordings that need to be repaired before they can be played back will add a few weeks to the processing time.
- Peak ordering times (October-January), weeks preceding Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, Father's Day and other holidays will lengthen our processing time to three, four, five or more weeks. 
- Please remember to add to that the shipping time, which varies depending on the shipping method you select.  
- Use our own CVC Productions Order Tracking System to see the status of your order at all times.  
- You will know the following:
          - The date we received your electronic order
          - That we received your recordings safely
          - When the recordings entered admin processing
          - When they are queued for studio time
          - When they are being processed in the studio
          - When the CD's are ready, and we are preparing to ship the order
          - When the CD's have been shipped back to you
          -  If shipped by UPS, the UPS tracking number, so you can track the order back to your front door
          -  If shipped by US Mail, the USPS tracking number, so you can track the order back to your front door
- The CVC Productions Order Tracking System is available 24 hours a day, and is continuously updated.
- Get answers to your questions about our Order Tracking System

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Q:  I am spending $60 to overnight my recordings to you.  Will your processing time be less?

A:

- No.  The vast majority of our customers who chose expensive couriers to ship their recordings to us do so because of increased security or convenience.  We receive dozens of packages every day from a variety of couriers.  All packages are opened and Admin Processed in the order in which they have been received.  Our studio operations and processing are in no way determined by the courier that brought the box to our studios.  A few clients told us that the "value of their shipment" would be diminished if processing still took 2-3 weeks.  True, but the premium paid to a courier does not impact our bottom line.  Please select the shipping method that best suits your  budget, security and convenience, with the knowledge that all orders are Admin Processed and Studio Processed in the order in which they were received.  

  

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Q:  Can you fix all types of damage to recordings?

A:

- No.  Listed below are some of the limitations.  We want our customers to be informed.  Please familiarize yourself with these limitations and write or call us if you have any questions.  Read also about the Types of Noises Successfully Removed or Diminished and Our Noise Reduction Philosophy.  The quality of our work is 100% guaranteed, but this guarantee does not apply to defects that are impossible to fix, such as those described below:
Unplayable disks  Please do not send disks that are cracked, warped, or otherwise unplayable. 
Off-center hole:  Some LP's have the center hole slightly off-center.  These records will play with the pitch varying slightly at each revolution.  
Skips  If the record "skips" on your machine, it may "skip" on our machines. Even if a record does not skip on your machine it may still skip on our machine (we use professional grade turntables and needles). If the needle skips forward we will continue processing. If the record skips in place we will push the needle gently into the next groove. We will repeat this a few times until the needle will track again. Some discontinuity may be noticed. We may not detect if the needle has skipped only a few times and then continued. We do not guarantee that we will detect, avoid or fix all skips. If any of these conditions are not acceptable, please do not submit records that skip.
Severe scratches We routinely eliminate 50,000 to 100,000 clicks, pops and scratches per record (!!!)  We have cleaned up recordings of over 400,000 imperfections with great results.  Most clicks are completely eliminated, without even a trace.  However, if the scratch is very severe (the underlying music is gone for a considerable amount of time) there will be a trace of a "pop" in the restored version.
Distortion  Distortions come in many flavors and have many possible causes: over modulation at recording, defective microphones or recording equipment, faulty stamping or quality control when the record was pressed, playing the record with a worn needle or with improper tracking force.  A distortion becomes part of the sound.  The computer (and filtering equipment) can not decide what is distorted and what is not (sometimes even humans have trouble hearing all forms of distortion).  Therefore, if your source recording is distorted, the restored copy will also be distorted (only the sound will be "cleaner").
Trade-offs 1)  Intense computer processing of very degraded signals may result in music that sounds somewhat muted.  It is a much more enjoyable experience to listen to a clean sounding recording, but somewhat muted, as opposed to a recording with severe hiss, crackles and pops.  2)  There are cases when a recording sounds clean for the most part, and needs a less drastic approach in restoration in order to preserve the "liveliness" of the original recording.   In this case it is more desirable to apply less severe processing, which may leave some occasional imperfections more audible.  We would like our customers to be aware of these trade-offs.
No pause between tracksPlease note that there must be few seconds of actual pause (silence) between the songs in order for us to be able to accurately assign tracks.  If the original material does not contain a few seconds of silence between the songs, and timings are not provided we will try to guess where the tracks should begin, but may not exactly match the tracks of the original.   This happens frequently with "live recording" albums, medleys, opera and sometimes with compilation tapes.  If our "guessing" is not acceptable, please do not submit recordings without a few seconds of silence between songs.
Inferior quality home or commercial recordingSome customers prefer to record their vinyl or shellac records onto a cassette, and send us the cassette for processing.   Please be aware that if the cassette is recorded with inferior equipment (noisy turntable or cassette recorder) the resulting CD will also be of inferior quality.   It is impossible to make a perfect CD out of a technically inferior recording.   This also applies to inferior commercial recordings (recordings with metallic, tiny sound, recordings with bad sibilants, recordings badly mixed).  We can not create frequencies that have never been recorded and can not re-mix a recording since we do not have the multi-track master.  Remember, recording companies have budgets of tens of thousands of dollars for their recordings, your budget for your restoration is much less.
Perfection is not possible and is not guaranteedWe do not promise that we will take a recording in any condition and turn it into a "perfect" recording.  We do not re-engineer recordings, unless we are provided with the original master tapes of a recording and an adequate professional re-mastering budget.  We guarantee the quality of our work in producing a faithful transfer with adequate noise reduction, but we do not claim or guarantee that  a recording that is sent to us will become a "perfect recording" as a result of our work.   Our transfer and restoration work addresses only sound elements that are audible by normal listeners under normal listening conditions.  We do not deal in "esoterica".  
Results commensurate with service selected: We offer a variety of services and price levels: from "consumer services" (and prices) to  "professional services" (and prices); from "transfer only" to "Individual Restoration Units".   We perform the service that was purchased by the customer when the order was placed.  Occasionally we encounter customers who purchase a lower level service but demand results equal with a higher levels service, without paying for it.  Customers with stringent requirements (and "perfectionists") should order higher level services ("professional services").   Results are commensurate with the budget we are given to work with and the level of service purchased.   

  

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Q: Can you guarantee that you will eliminate every single pop?  Can you guarantee that there will be absolutely no skips in a record?

A:

- No. There are many thousands of pops and clicks on each recording. Some skips can not be detected , avoided or fixed.  When we restore a record we have to decide how severe the pops and clicks are, and how much correction to apply to the music. On a recording that is otherwise good, except for a few pops, we prefer to apply less correction in order to preserve the liveliness of the music. This is explained on our Web site on our Noise Reduction Philosophy page.
- The budget for the restoration, at the consumer price level, does not allow for "Hand removal" of pops and clicks or fixing skips.  If you know that certain songs/tracks require extra restoration work, please select additional "Individual Restoration Units". 
- We also offer professional restoration services. Please contact us with details about your project.

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Q:  What should I choose: Transfer Only or Restoration?

A:

- Please do not ask us to make that determination. It is a personal, subjective decision. It is up to you, your requirements and your taste. We do not offer advice (this type of advice is time consuming, not included in the cost of the transfer and may be perceived as a conflict of interest if we recommend Restoration). Also, we do not want to assume responsibility that we have made the wrong recommendation. our sister service LP2CD is offering an option for ordering BOTH versions (Transfer Only AND Transfer with Sound Restoration). When in doubt, order BOTH versions.

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Q:  Can you restore RealAudio/MP3 files to full sound?

A:

- It is easier to remove noises (clicks, scratches, hiss, hum, pops, etc.) and let the music underneath "shine through", than to add to the music. The Real Audio files have been stripped of much of their information by the compression process. The information that was dropped by the compression process (highs, lows, clarity, detail) is lost forever. We would have to create frequencies and "reconstruct" the music. If we were able to do that we would immediately patent the product and offer it to every PC owner (and retire VERY, VERY rich).

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