Vinyl and Proprioception

Vinyl records can be experienced through the following senses:

  1. Sight: The visual experience of vinyl includes the artwork and design of the record cover, the color and texture of the vinyl itself, and the movement of the record on the turntable.
  2. Sound: The most obvious sense involved with vinyl, the sound quality and characteristics of vinyl are often considered superior to digital formats, with vinyl’s warmth, depth and unique tone.
  3. Touch: The tactile experience of vinyl includes the feeling of the grooves on the vinyl, the weight of the record, and the sensation of handling the record itself.
  4. Smell: The smell of vinyl can be a sensory experience for some people, with the earthy, musty scent of an old record adding to the overall experience.
  5. Taste: While not a recommended or common practice, some people have reported the taste of vinyl after accidentally licking it.
  6. Proprioception: The physical sensation of moving and handling vinyl, the way it feels in your hands as it is placed on the turntable or lifted off the needle, is also part of the vinyl experience.

Proprioception is the sense of awareness and perception of one’s own body and its movements. When handling a striated spiral vinyl record, proprioception can include the physical sensations of the grooves and ridges as the record is held, rotated and placed onto a turntable, and the awareness of the positioning and movement of the stylus along the grooves. Proprioception of a striated spiral vinyl record can also include the sensation of the record’s weight and balance as it is held, as well as the sensation of the turntable’s movement and vibrations through the record and into the stylus. Overall, the proprioceptive experience of handling a striated spiral vinyl record can contribute to the overall sensory experience of listening to music on vinyl.