Consumers love vinyl, and can't get enough of it -- sometimes literally. With presses running at capacity-and hampered to some degree by a production process that hasn't technologically changed in decades -- it's possible that the top of the market may be limited by supply, not demand.
Cost and production methods create limitations as well. The format is an expensive, time-consuming process. As a petroleum-based product, vinyl's costs are dependent on oil prices. The cost of crude oil has risen from approximately $42 a barrel in January 2009 to $112 a barrel this month, according to InvestmentMine. Vinyl costs as much as 10 times to manufacture as CDs, at least $3.50 for the former to as little as 35 cents for the latter.
It also can take two weeks to ready a record for shipment, while a CD can be manufactured and assembled in a day or two. And that's just for black vinyl. The process is more costly, time-consuming and difficult for colored vinyl and elaborate packaging.