Gotta Groove Records

Gotta Groove Records

Vinyl Pressing For A New Generation of Listeners & Artists – Generation Wax

Record Pressing With Gotta Groove — Why press with Us?

We think we have something really special to offer at GGR, and we want you to be part of it.

Our approach is to make records better than they have to be made. There are six key attributes that set apart Gotta Groove Records pressings from those of other pressing plants – Equipment, Experience, Materials, Quality Control, Convenience & Customer Service, and Environmental Responsibility:


GGR has implemented some technology and processes which (quite possibly, although we can’t verify) have never been used on record pressing equipment anywhere in the world. In fact, NASA has consulted in some facets of our operation. We have a closed-loop heating/cooling system comprised of a high efficiency boiler and industrial chiller.

Our pressing floor includes eight (8) fully-automatic record pressing machines, all controlled by modern electronics such as PLCs (programmable logic controllers) and temperature-controlled molds:

– One NEW 2017 custom built computerized automated record press – built specifically for GGR by Record Pressing Machines, LLC (RPM). The press has touch-screen controls, as well as all zoned PLC controls that our entire pressing operation utilizes. This press is actually serial number 1 for Record Pressing Machines, LLC – GGR is the first plant to install one of their machines; but since then, some of the other high quality pressing plants in the United States (QRP and Fidelity Record Pressing) have followed our lead. RPM’s design focus upon using the best of the traditional record press compositions and functions, but integrating modern controls and off-the-shelf parts for faster and more economical servicing compared to either legacy machines or machines built outside of the United States. For making the highest quality records, these truly are the best modern pressing machines.

– One NEW 2019 custom built computerized automated record press – also made specifically fro GGR by Record Pressing Machines, LLC. This machine is very similar to our 2017 press, with a few new “bells and and whistles” as the company continued its constant improvement in the machine’s design.

– Two (2) restored and rebuilt SMT automatic 12″ presses. SMT presses are extremely reliable and efficient for pressing 150 gram 12″ records. Once setup, they run and run and run until you stop them. The new Record Pressing Machines presses mentioned above are modelled off of the best features of the traditional SMT press.

– Four (4) restored and rebuilt Hamilton automatic presses – two for 150 gram 12″ records, one for 180 gram records, and one for 7″ records. Hamilton presses are particularly adept at making the best sounding 180 gram records on the planet, making custom color records (including Wax Mage variants), and are easy to use for running test pressings. Our 7″ Hamilton press was originally a 12″ press that we rebuilt to make 7″ records.

We also operate our own state-of-the-art record plating facility — The Electromastering Lab.  We produce stampers not only for our own pressings, but for other pressing plants all around the world. The Electroforming Lab is split into two departments – Wet Ops and Dry Ops.  Wet ops consists of 28 plating positions, two silvering booths, and five process sinks.  Dry Ops consists of three optical stamper centering machines; two stamper sanding machines; three stamper trimming machines; two hydraulic presses for stamper forming; and a plethora of soldering, cleaning, inspection, metal working, and lacquer preparatory tools and machines.

All of our wet ops equipment was newly designed and built between 2016 and 2022.  The plating tank lines are isolated from one another, which minimizes the risk of any trace contaminants being transferred between tanks, as well as adds a level of redundancy to prevent down time.  Each line has its own independent filtration system, heating/cooling system, and controls.  So, if for one reason or another, one line needs to be taken down, it will not affect the operation of the rest of the Wet Room.  The rectifiers (the power supplies which create the DC electric current necessary for the nickel to “grow” into stampers) are all extreme heavy duty builds, minimizing ripple and maintaining extremely consistent current densities.  They are programmable to run our proprietary cycle times and cycle current densities.

The part mounts (how the lacquers / mothers / fathers are mounted inside of the tanks) are modeled after the SMT plating lines that were viewed as the best lines ever built many decades ago.  While many record enthusiasts are familiar with the name SMT when it comes to pressing machines, less people are aware that SMT also designed and built plating lines and silvering booths for the record industry.  The key component that differentiates the SMT plating line design is the use of removable “spindles” to mount the mandrels (the mandrels in record plating are the lacquers / mothers / masters – the part off of which a new nickel part is being “grown”).

The vast majority of record plating lines around the world require the operator to bring the mandrel to the plating position, and then mount it by hand to the tank with a bolt – all over the plating solution in the tank.  The advantage of the SMT spindle setup is that all of the mandrel handling happens away from the tank, at a sink.  So, no risk of dropping mounting nuts into the plating solution, dropping parts into the plating solution (or on the floor walking them over to the tank), and the mandrel is known to be completely secure and wrapped with a rubber edge ring before it gets anywhere near the plating line.  This not only reduces contaminants in tanks and potential damage to parts, but also helps operators work more efficiently when loading and unloading parts.

We process both DMM parts and lacquers.  DMM parts are fairly straightforward, and do not require the level of preparation that lacquers require.  However, many record enthusiasts still view lacquers as sonically superior to DMM cuts, so the vast majority of new sides processed at the Electromastering Lab are from lacquers.

We have several proprietary lacquer preparation procedures to ensure the optimum sound quality of our stampers, and the minimum scrap possible.  Of the hundreds of lacquers we process on a monthly basis, we have a less than 1% reject rate.

Gotta Groove Records is unique in that we actually have made our own lacquer discs over the years.  While we do not currently make our own lacquers for live cutting, our experience in developing both nitrocellulose and non-nitrocellulose coatings, as well as actually manufacturing some limited lots of our own lacquer discs, has given us invaluable insights on how we approach processing and plating lacquers today.  We view MDC lacquers as the best that we have ever had the experience of processing, and we maintain direct contact with the Japanese manufacturer of these discs.

Similar to our plating lines, our silvering booth design is modeled after the SMT silvering booth from decades ago.  The fully automated booth has PLC controls that maintain our stringent silver cycle time requirements exactly the same on every part.  Silvering lacquers is very similar to how antique mirrors are made.  In a nutshell, the part is cleaned with a strong industrial detergent.  After rinsing, a chemical called a “sensitizer” is applied to the part.  This does exactly what it sounds – it makes the part sensitive enough for silver to stick to it.  After sensitizing and a quick rinse, the part is immediately transferred to the silvering booth.

Inside the silvering booth, a process called “Reduction” occurs.  A lot of people think of this step as silver paint being applied to the part, which is certainly what it looks like.  However, what is actually happening during the reduction process is, the silver metal is being pulled (reduced) mid-air out of the solution mixture; and then only 100% pure silver sticks to the areas that are sensitized.  It is truly a fascinating process, and one that has been in use for well over 100 years for all sorts of mirrors, optics, and of course, records.

Depending upon the combinations of order specs (color(s), quantities, etc), our capacity is up to 8,000 records per day over the course of two shifts running Monday through Friday.

Instead of focusing solely upon the quantity of records that we can produce, our first and foremost focus is upon the quality of the records we produce. We like to say that we have “big plant capacity”, but specialty shop quality and customer service.


Having the best machines in the business is one key element – but making vinyl records is not easy, and experience counts. Our staff is one of the most experienced record pressing staffs in the industry.  Since our opening in 2009, we have pressed millions of records — over 20,000 individual vinyl releases.  These titles range from widely distributed releases such as Jason Isbell & The 400 Unit –  Reunions and Beyonce – Homecoming  |  180 gram audiophile reissues such as Darren Korb – Songs of Supergiant Games and John Coltrane – Plays The Blues  |  indie releases such as Delvon Lamarr Organ Trio — I Told You So and Mavericks – En Espanol  |  to private pressings such as Black Unity Trio – Al-Fatihah and Liz Longley – Funeral For My Past.

A company can have the best location and most attractive building, the most expensive machines ever made, and the deepest marketing & PR pockets in the industry – but it still cannot make the best records on the planet without having the best employees. From day one, Gotta Groove has been blessed with talent. We did not start with a single employee who had prior record pressing experience – but we did start (and continue) with employees who wanted to learn the craft of making records, help build a reputation for high quality records, as well as actually do the work required to make some of the best records ever made.

We are humbled and gracious to say that we have folks in every department – pressing, quality assurance, and packing – who have either been with us from the very beginning of our company, or pretty close thereto. We value our employees’ loyalty, as well as their insights, way more than any of the physical assets we have acquired; and we would not be the company we are today, or have the optimistic view of our future in this exciting and challenging industry, without the dedication of our employees.

We employ a full time mechanic, as well as more quality control workers than any other pressing plant in the U.S. — one quality control employee per every two pressing machines listening to approximately every 25th record off the press during every shift, regardless of order size.  Notes are kept and pressing adjustments made, as necessary.  This certainly does increase the amount of time necessary to manufacture records, but it has proven effective in shipping the highest quality records that can possibly be manufactured.  Many of the issues caught during this extensive listening process would otherwise make it out to the marketplace, if not for our listening practices. Many issues are not visually apparent, and therefore require listening.

Call it a Cleveland thing…or call it a Midwestern thing. Whatever you want to call it, our team of employees is the biggest factor that sets the standard upon which the Gotta Groove Records reputation relies.


At GGR, we have experimented with nearly every vinyl formulation available around the world.  From 2013 through 2018, our black was custom manufactured for us by Rimtec, now known as Riken Americas.  In late 2017, Riken advised us of the possibility that they may exit the black vinyl market.  So, in January 2018, we began to procure different black formulations from around the world.  We even experimented with a non-PVC plastic at one point.  As of late 2019 through today, we primarily use non-lead PVC formulas from TPC (Neotech).

We also continuously conduct R&D on both vinyl and non-vinyl materials manufactured by some non-record business compounders within the United States.  We are currently working with the National Renewable Energy Laboratory on developing a non-vinyl material to make records.  We are in the final stages of testing an additive for record compound that, when introduced to a highly microbial environment (aerobic and anaerobic) [such as a landfill], the rate of biodegredation of the vinyl is greatly enhanced.

The one material that has the most impact on every aspect making a record — starting with the plating of either the master lacquer or the DMM cut — is water – ultra purified water.  If you have contaminants in your water, nothing else that happens downstream will matter.  Traditionally, record plating facilities used DI (Deionized) water.  Instead, we use RO (Reverse osmosis) water, generated via our custom built softening and RO water plant.  On most days, our water purity is less than 2ppm on our TDS meter, which is far below the threshold required for purity in electroforming.

Another attribute that sets The Electromastering Lab apart from other plating facilities is our use of extremely high-end chemistry – Reagent/ACS grade whenever available, and never lower than Lab Grade chemistry.  While this is more expensive than using the more traditional tech-grade chemicals predominantly used in plating shops of all kinds, it greatly reduces potential variables and/or contaminants that could create problems on stampers.  We use solely Inco S-Round nickel pellets, which are generally viewed as the highest grade of nickel that is obtainable for electroforming.

Finally, we opt to not use off-the-shelf brighteners, wetters, or other chemicals that are common in all types of electroforming and electroplating; opting instead to mix our own chemistry using the high-grade ingredients mentioned above.


Our primary focus in how we run our business is producing the highest quality records possible.  We are obsessed with quality – we admit we are not the fastest pressing plant, or the cheapest – but we are confident that you will get the best records for your money when you enlist our services.

No other pressing plant listens to as many records as Gotta Groove, period.  We have a separate listening room devoted to every two pressing machines we operate.  Every test pressing we run is thoroughly listened to, with extensive notes and an internal grading system applied, before passing and shipping to our customers.  99% of the test pressings we ship are approved by our customers on the first run.

During final manufacturing, approximately every 25th record off each press is listened to – regardless of order quantity.  Why? This practice prevents records with imperfections that would otherwise enter the marketplace.  Period.  Regardless of the type of machine or process used to make record, there is no better proven method to screen for and prevent quality issues than listening to the records themselves.  Many issues are not visually apparent, and therefore require listening. As a result, the records we ship are as close to “perfect” pressings as is realistically possible with the vinyl format.


Since our inception, we have been devoted to making vinyl manufacturing as easy as it can be.  We provide everything you need to make a record in-house — mastering, lacquer cutting at the Well Made Music studios (all 12” jobs) and Rare Form Mastering studios (all 7” jobs), DMM cutting, plating, pressing, printed packaging, download code hosting, graphic design, fulfillment, and even distribution if you need it.

Our Record Builder online price calculator and order placement system is the easiest way to order custom records in the industry [click here for a video showing the Record Builder in action]. We also have an online order tracking system, where customers can check the status of their order and see milestones 24/7.

You will not find a more responsive company in the industry – we answer our phones during business hours (if you get the voicemail, please leave a message – we are just tied up on the other line).  We answer emails within 24 business hours (and, most often, within minutes).  When you work with us, you are working directly with the folks who actually do the production of each element of your release, so you have direct lines of communication for each step of the process.

The vast majority of our employees are musicians, and almost all of us are vinyl record consumers ourselves.  So, we all take pride in the records that we put into the marketplace, and strive to produce them in a manner that we would be happy to buy with our own money.


Last, but far from least, minimizing our environmental footprint is very important to us at GGR, as it should be to everyone. So, we take broad measures to run our operation as efficiently as possible, as well as to mitigate our footprint on the earth as much as possible. We strongly believe that if everyone – manufacturers, service sector businesses, and individuals alike – makes real efforts to minimize impact upon the environment, we can all have a collective positive effect on the world’s climate and living conditions, as well as upon our own personal lives.   We recognize that not every business is going to be zero-impact, or carbon negative.  Butit is the collective real actions –not just marketing statements– taken by businesses and individuals within their own controllable environments and lives that can mitigate waste and pollutants and have a true collective improvement for our earth.

Records, when taking the entire supply chain and consumer behavior with the end product into account, are some of the least environmentally detrimental consumer goods sold. This is in large part because, well, you can enjoy a well-manufactured record for generations if it is made well and properly cared for! Records are a consumer good that is not generally “disposable” — the majority of record buyers keep their records indefinitely, and those who do not typically will sell/donate them vs throwing them in the trash.  By focusing on making high quality records, we feel that we further ensure that our records are collected and owned for lifetimes.  An interesting article somewhat related to this subject was published in the Ecologist in 2018.

Also, the device required to play records — a turntable — is generally not thrown away. Most people who invest in a decent turntable will only buy one or two in an entire lifetime – and even when they replace or part ways with it, it is rarely thrown away, but instead typically sold to a new user. Contrast this to the devices required for digital entertainment formats such as audio and video streaming, download audio, video games – and how many mobile devices and/or computers a typical consumer goes through in a lifetime (and how few of these are re-purposed or recycled).

Manufacturing is an essential component to the success of our economy.  In any manufacturing operation, there is going to be some level of waste/scrap.  While we can only speak specifically with regard to our operation at GGR, we believe that the manufacture of records tends to be on the far lower end of potential pollutants than the vast majority of manufacturing operations.

Fortunately, the vast majority of the scrap and excess materials involved in making the records we ship (print / packaging / vinyl / metal parts / lacquers) are recycled or reused within our operation.  All paper scrap is recycled, and the lion’s share of scrapped records are recycled within our closed-loop system.  In fact, the vinyl that we do not recycle internally is recycled by a third party for other non-record related goods — Since 2023, Return Polymers has a regular pickup at our facility for any scrap we do not reuse in our records.   Finally, we are a lead-free pressing plant – we deliberately use vinyl formulations which do not have lead as an ingredient.

The steam circulation system in our pressing plant is “closed circuit” – the steam and water are continually recycled through the loop system. Our machines are modernized with controls to increase their efficiencies, and electric motors and pumps have been modernized and replaced.

We worked closely with the Ohio EPA and the Columbus Division of Water during the planning and initial implementation phases of our plating facility, to make sure we set things up the right way.  Here are some specific ways our plating operation makes the smallest footprint on the environment as possible:

-Our electricity is generated through a Green-E Certified wind power plan

-Zero wastewater from our operation is put into the sewer – wastewater is evaporated

-Supply materials are sourced and used in manners to minimize waste. For example, all gloves we use are made from biodegradable nitrile; all plastic sleeves we use for stampers are made from 100% recycled (and recyclable) plastic; packing tape is industrially compostable; stamper jackets and packing cartons are reused continuously until they can no longer serve their purpose; empty bottles/boxes/containers are recycled.

-Scrap metal is recycled.

As mentioned above, we are continually conducting R&D on new materials which could potentially replace vinyl as the main ingredient in records in the future.  The main requirement to GGR is that the material must sound the same or better as the Neotech vinyl we currently use; and it has to offer real net gain in sustainability — not just trading one issue for another.  To date, we have yet to procure or produce such a material.  At least as of today, pure vinyl just works for records, unless you are willing to make a sound quality concession, or trade one issue for another.

We are excited about the additive mentioned above, which enhances the biodegradability of vinyl (and, through our extensive testing to date, does not impact sound quality or record life longeavity at all).  However, we view this as a temporary bridge to minimizing plastic waste.  The main drawback of increased biodegradability of plastics is twofold — 1. when it does not make it to a landfill, it will still biodegrade in nature (which can cause risks to animals who may ingest the pieces of plastic that are naturally breaking apart); and 2. Biodegredation still causes methane, a harmful greenhouse gas.

Of course, it is unlikely that vinyl records and/or scrap from making vinyl records may wind up discarded outside of a landfill, when it is not being otherwise recycled.  Also, in modern landfills, such methane can be captured and repurposed into natural gas.  Finally, we feel it is extremely unlikely that large quantities of modern vinyl records or record compound scrap may be winding up in landfills to begin with.  But, all that being said, we do not view the additive as a closed chapter on our quest for the ultimate sustainable material for records.

Finally, we strongly encourage customers to use our polybags instead of shrinkwrap.  (Our no-flap polybags are made from 100% recycled / recyclable plastic).  Our shrinkwrap is made from partially recycled sources, and can also be recycled itself (though not curbside – which causes us to question how much is actually going to be recycled).  We encourage ground shipping over air shipping.  Finally, we offer 100% recycled random color vinyl for our pressings, as long as stock permits.

The Gotta Groove Records Bottom Line – High Quality Record Pressing, Customer Service, and Environmental Consciousness

If you don’t see what you are looking for or have a question, get in touch with us at [email protected] or call (800) 295-0171.  We invite you to view our company video to learn more about us, and our approach to making records.  We want to press your next record.

Custom Record Pressing

-Professional mastering and cutting
-High quality plating & pressing
-Unsurpassed quality control
-Custom printed packaging
-Download audio/video hosting
-Distribution/fulfillment consulting
-Responsive customer service

Big Plant Capacity
Specialty Shop Quality & Service
We want to press your next record.

Contact Information:
(800) 295-0171
[email protected]

Mailing List

Vinyl Mastering Info:

The Very Basics

Graphics & Mastering Services:

Click Here for Referrals

Label Services & Distro

Fulfillment Pricing & Info

Merch Services:

Cassettes, CDs, Merch Referrals

Record Stores:

RSD Store Directory

Official Store:

Gotta Groove Archives