If you are in music production then often would have encountered the terms EP, LP and Album. I know if you are reading this article then you don’t know about these terms.
Well, in this article I’ll explain what is the difference between EP, LP and Album in music production?
BUT, first elt me expalin you where these terms are used in music production?
Actually, EP, LP or Album is a music recording consists of single song or bunch of songs. According to the number of songs in the music recording, we categorize them into EP PL and Album categories.
SO, you can tell them music records fell under EP, LP and album categories as per the song count.
Let’s find out the meanings and difference between EP, LP and Album.
What is an EP
According to Wikipedia, the full form of EP is “Extended Play“, that means a music recording which has more then one track but not qualified to called as an album (I will describe Album at last).
EPs generally have 3 to 6 songs in the record. Anything more then that fall into the Album category.
However, the total time of songs also play a role in categories the record. If it’s below 28 Minutes then falls under EP.
History of EP
In the past, before 1980s, EP were actually vinyl records spin at the speed of 78 rpm. That was the double speed then an LP which I have described below in this article.
Because of the double speed the one side of EP records end up under 12 minutes. SO, the total play time was only 22-24 minutes.
That’s the reason of low number of songs in the record.
I know, Vinyl is now past, but still EP, LP etc terms are in use. I will describe at last why they are in use still today.
BUT, first let me explain what is an LP?
What is an LP
LP referred as “Long Playing” is a vinyl record. The Abbreviation “LP” is taken from the Long Playing.
Vinyl records were analog music storage medium introduced by Columbia in 1948. Long Playing or LP vinyl records are phonograph records format which is categorize by a specific speed of 33 1⁄3 rpm.
That means, this type of vinyl records spin at the speed of 33 1⁄3 rpm. LP Vinyl record have the vast history.
History of LP
They had been remained the standard format for record albums until its replaced with the first by compact discs introduced on 1980s.
The main characteristic of LP or Long Playing records is each side of an LP vinyl disk can play up to 22 minutes. SO, the total play time was approximate 44 minutes.
What is an Album
A collection of music tracks recorded on CD, Vinyl or digital platform is called an album if it satisfies the below cafeterias.
- The total duration of all the tracks should be more then 30 minutes.
- There is no rules about song counts for albums but any release contains seven or more songs also considered as a album.
As the time duration is similar to LP we can consider an album as a form of LP.
Difference Between EP, LP and Album
SO, we can say that,
Any release of having less then 22 minutes both side and made of 1-3 songs can be put into EP.
Any release of having more then 40 minutes counting both sides, and 3-6 songs can be put into LP.
And, any release having more then 30 minutes and more then 7 songs(1-6 songs also counted as album) can be put into Album.
Conclusion: Difference Between EP, LP and Album
Well, now you know all about EP, LP and Album.
I hope this article has cleared all your doubts about these three terms that new music producers often encounter.
When I’ve entered into music production, I was also confused about these terms.
That time there’s no reliable information available on the internet researching EP, LP etc. However, today internet made it easy or us to research about something.
Please share this article on social media so that it would help others.
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Gautam Roy is a recording engineer and a blogger from India. He loves music, writing and travelling. He is also an active investor and a successful entrepreneur.