This is intended to be a glossary of the terms commonly used on the site. Any suggestions please email me at


Dead wax

A term used to describe that section of the record between the label and the actualy playing surface of the record, ie. the actual grooves. Its a fairly flat section of vinyl but is important because it contains information. This information can be a message from the artist or the mastering engineer such as an expression or quote. It also contains information on the actual pressing itself, such as generation of master, mastering engineer, where the record was cut etc.


Direct Metal Mastering is a technology for cutting directly into a metal stamper which is then used to stamp vinyl records. It has advantages over the lacquer process, in that it eliminates the lacquer stage(see below) and can fit more length onto a vinyl LP. 


One of the stages in making a record is to use the sound to physically cut  the groove for a record. There are two methods used. The more traditional way is to use a lacquer. Lacquer is a soft waxy material which is easy to cut into. From this lacquer cast, the metal pressing plate is then produced which is actually used to stamp the records. The more modern alternative method is DMM.

Needle drop

A term used to describe the process of making a digital copy from a vinyl record. Usually onto cd. Came into use as term in the recording industry when original master were lost and the new master for a re-release or a compilation was made from taking a copy of a record. 



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