A HI-FI specialist is taking advantage of a new wave of interest in vinyl LPs by inviting people in to play their favourite records.

The Future of Audio in Parkstone, is teaming with nearby Big Brother Records to organise the latest in a series of Ashley Road Record Club Vinyl Evenings.

Sales of LP records were at their highest for a decade last year.

Matt Scott, owner of The Future of Audio, said: “A record contains more information than any digital form. If you can reach that information, you’re going to hear more.”

He said people did not love CDs – with their plastic jewel cases and tiny sleeve notes – the way they did their records.

Many young people now buying LPs prefer to keep them in pristine condition while listening to the digital download that often comes with them.

Mr Scott said: “The hi-fi industry has a measure of those who are somewhere within the autistic spectrum. They are collectors, they are box tickers. Quite often the record in itself is something to be collected, not played.

“But there is another group who will always love the record over any other format and will seek out second hand LPs, go to record fairs etc and really get into and enjoy it.”

Although the revival was initially driven by middle-aged men, it had spread, he said.

“We’ve got the guys who had records when they were growing up and they’re shoved in the loft, they’ve got them out and archived them on to their computer and they’ve thought ‘I’m enjoying myself here’ – or they get them down to show their son or daughter for curiosity value. You’ve got fathers and daughters coming in, equally interested in records.

“The youngsters like a different kind of music but they’ve come in having been impressed by Yes or Pink Floyd.”

The vinyl evenings at The Future of Audio see one room devoted to a particular theme (this time roots and dub), while another is ‘open deck’.

Mr Scott will give records a free professional clean (the price is normally £5) and play them on a turntable.

He says many people only remembered hearing their LPs on cheaper equipment. “That’s why the propaganda of CDs being better than records was able to get a foothold,” he said.

“The first CD players cost £400. Most people just listened to records on any old thing. If somebody bought a CD player, 90 per cent of those people would never spent £400 on a record player and they believed they were comparing like with like.”

  • The next vinyl evening at The Future of Audio, 588 Ashley Road, is on Thursday, 6.30pm to 9.30pm.