Beatles stereo CDs get the Japanese mini-LP CD treatment


Update 11/12/14: Universal Music Japan have issued this video (see below) to celebrate the release of the vinyl replica SHM-CDs


Universal Music Japan will issue the entire Beatles catalogue as stereo SHM-CDs in vinyl replica packaging this December.

All eleven of the official UK studio albums will be reissued, along with Magical Mystery Tour and Yellow Submarine. The Past Master two-CD set and the two compilations 1962-1966 (the ‘red’ double album) and 1967-1970 (the ‘blue’ double album) will also form part of this reissue campaign.

These will use the 2009 stereo remastering but will be manufactured using the Japanese SHM process (Super High Material). Putting to one side the debate about perceived sound improvements, the real draw here is the full Japanese ‘paper sleeve’ / vinyl replica mini-LP CD packaging.

This fantastic attention to detail was given to the mono CDs (via the Mono Box) a few years back, but the international stereo discs were only ever reissued in the six-panel card wallets. Just like the Japanese mono CDs these new reissues will be exact mini-replicas of the original UK LPs, which means that Beatles For Sale will be the original gatefold with CD accessible via the inside of the gatefold sleeve, Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band will come with the original inner sleeve and cardboard cut-outs and The White Album will be a ‘top loading’ gatefold with glossy photos and poster.

Even if buying everything all over again doesn’t appeal, why not ‘finish off’ your Mono Box by picking up Yellow SubmarineLet It Be and Abbey Road in stereo mini-LP CD form? That would give you all the albums in matching vinyl replica presentation, and a close look at that box set suggests you can just about fit in the three extra albums.

These are being released in Japan only on 17 December 2014. There is no international release at all, but as usual there are plenty of options online for getting hold of them (see various pre-order links below). It’s also worth noting that here is no box set being issued to go with these individual releases.

The Beatles / Please Please Me / Vinyl Stereo Remasters

1. Please Please Me (SHM-CD mini LP)

Pre-order With The Beatles Vinyl Stereo Remaster

2. With The Beatles (SHM-CD mini LP)


3. A Hard Day’s Night (SHM-CD mini LP)

Pre-order Beatles For Sale Stereo Vinyl Remaster

4. Beatles For Sale (SHM-CD mini LP)

The Beatles / Help! / Vinyl Stereo Remaster

5. Help! (SHM-CD mini LP)

The Beatles / Rubber Soul / Stereo Vinyl Remaster

6. Rubber Soul (SHM-CD mini LP)


7. Revolver (SHM-CD mini LP)

The Beatles / Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band / Stereo Vinyl Remaster

8. Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band (SHM-CD mini LP)

The Beatles / Magical Mystery Tour / DVD and Blu-ray

9. Magical Mystery Tour (SHM-CD mini LP)

The Beatles / The White Album / Stereo Vinyl Remaster

10. The Beatles (The White Album) 2CD (SHM-CD mini LP)

The Beatles / Yellow Submarine album Vinyl Stereo remaster

11. Yellow Submarine (SHM-CD mini LP)


12. Abbey Road (SHM-CD mini LP)


13. Let It Be (SHM-CD mini LP)

Pre-order The Beatles Past Masters Stereo Vinyl remasters

14. Past Masters (2CD) (SHM-CD mini LP)


15. The Beatles 1962-1966 (2CD) (SHM-CD mini LP)


16. The Beatles 1967-1970 (2CD) (SHM-CD mini LP)

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Colorado Ben

I held off on the first pressing of these in December, but I just got all 16 (second pressing) from CD Japan, with 3 day shipping, and no extra import fees. They were packaged to ship womderfully well, and I felt like a kid at Christmas opening each one. The sound is a slight bit cleaner, and crisper. I know others will claim thatnthe only difference is in my head, but it is actually a better sound reproduction.
The LIB album in not a gatefold, and the japanese language booklets include the lyrics in english.
These are really stunning, and even though this second pressing doesn’t include the calendar poster, it was a no- brainer. I have seen a lot of retailers listings state “out of stock” so it is now or never.

David Johnston

Oh, and don’t try to play Help! It’s quite badly warped.

David Johnston

It’s official. The next set to be released will be the SHM-SA Blueray 7.1 multichannel version of the LPs as we remember them from the ’60s: with crackle and pop, tracks jumping and track 5 of Revolution will include the sound of a stylus skating across the grooves to track 7; the second half of Yellow Submarine will however be in near-pristine condition, only ever having been played once, if that. One of the two White Album discs will be missing (left at a friend’s place) and Hard Day’s Night will have been mistakenly replaced by a Bobby Vee record. Sleeve artwork will include realistic coffee cup and beer glass stains, the sleeve of Beatles For Sale will be torn and the glue will have come completely unstuck from Abbey Road. As an added extra, each unit will be personalised ballpoint pen facsimile of your adolescent signature. All White Album and Sgt.Peppers souvenir artwork and posters will have long been lost. Despite the superlative audio quality, all sound quality will have been reprocessed to sound as if it’s emanating from the speaker of a portable gramophone (later discs, a Toshiba 3 in 1). Ah, sweet nostalgia.

David S.

That was awesome! I haven’t laughed that hard in a long, long time. Thank you kind sir. And to all, a good night.

Michael Pendlebury

I’ve just received the box set from the seller on ebay listed above! It’s an amazing package. The discs and artwork really look stunning. I’ve only had chance to listen to a few favourites so far – but they sound great (haven’t got the 2009 versions so unfortunately I can’t compare). They all came in the Disc Union wooden box in which they are housed perfectly! To top it off they didn’t get caught by customs (I was fearing a heavy tax bill for these beauties). I recommend!

[…] brought the mammoth Beatles in Mono vinyl box and this month saw the stereo CDs reissued as Japanese mini-LP SHM-CDs. This is all well and good but it’s ridiculous that 1970 documentary Let It Be is still not […]


I have heard Sargent Peppers and I compared to the 2009 remaster. While the 2009 one is very good the 2014 version is just perfect. These do sound a tiny bit louder and are more cleaner and clear. I just love it when some people make judgements about how some CDS sound WITH OUT even hearing what they are talking about.


For Jeremy,
The red apple logo appeared on the back cover of the original Let It Be album release for the UK but did not come with a red apple label on the record, it was only the standard green apple logo.
For the US release of Let It Be, the album was packaged with a gatefold (as many have referred to above) and it did have a red apple on the record label.
Given this current release is about replicating the UK albums it would not be an expectation the Let It Be would carry the red apple label from the US release.
I agree though that the red apple labels are a treat and look great, perhaps that could be expected on some future release on all the US albums (??) I’m sure that will create some further debate on here LOL.


“For hard core Beatle fans this is the holy grail” That’s what they said about the 2009 Stereo Box Set and The Beatles Mono Box Set 2009. Now this is the holy grail. After this they will release the Mono Box Set on SHM CD then that will be the new holy grail. How many holy grails does one need?

John Moore

These releases came out and are being snapped up by collectors and fans alike. The limited edition DU promotional box has been delayed due to a production issue and will be available in the middle of January. For the paper jacket music fans and for hardcore Beatles fans this collection is the holy grail. We have been waiting for it for over 10 years and finally their out but they won’t last long and they won’t be released again! The biggest success in paper jacket CDs were the Rolling Stones series but this set is up there and has been widely advertised on TV and in the press. Be sure to treat yourself.


Will they ever release anything ever again other than the same 2009 re masters? I like them and they sound great but can’t we have something new (pun intended). It’s 2015 almost and they still want me to buy 2009. Enough already.

Mark A

I would think that Amazon.co.jp and HMV.co.jp would also be options worth checking (but since I live in Japan I don’t bother with details like shipping–it’s always free at these prices–and the vendors linked above may give better rates). Also, I am assuming the Amazon.co.jp ships internationally since Amazon.com does, but again I’ve never needed to check that.


If they’re faithful reproductions of the UK albums, shouldn’t the Let It Be album have a red apple label?


Eric, you forgot all the same but then in mono.

Doesn’t all this actually de-value the Beatles.


just how much milk is left !!!!!!


If people are still prepared to drink this “milk”, then farmer Paul, Ringo, Olivia and Yoko will still authorise the churning of the same old product in new packaging.

In this regard they ought to be thoroughly ashamed of themselves.

Compare this to Columbia who have recently released a 9LP box set of 1964 Bob Dylan recordings, for copyright extension purposes, most of which has never been bootlegged.

The Beatles these days are surrounded by yes people in Apple who don’t have the guts to suggest issuing material from the Archive.

They’d soon take note if every purchaser with savvy vetoed this repackaged garbage.


eric slangen

I wouldn’t be surprised if the next step is :
1. The Beatles SHM-cd
2. The beatles SHM-SACD
3. The Beatles SHM-mini lps.


I’m considering Abbey Road & maybe Let It Be (if it’s a gatefold) just to have them as mini’s. …But it galls me that the Lennon and Beach Boys reissues are being done as SHM-SACD’s and these aren’t. Not that I could afford the entire Beatles catalog as Japan import SHM-SACD’s, mind You. …But that’s what I’d really be interested in. My crystal ball says those will show up eventually – followed by BluRay (multi-channel??). They’ll milk it for every $ they can.


This would be very interesting to know but I guess these are replicas of the English originals so I doubt that “Let it be” is a gatefold sleeve. To my knowledge it was released as a gatefold in USA but not in the UK


Exactly, I thought no one would notice this peculiarity


Does anyone happen to know if the gatefold version of Let It Be ever got a mini-LP CD release?

Joanne Nugent

I wish they were coming with a black glossy box to match the white Mono box. You think for the price of all 16 titles they could have included a box as a bonus or something.

The Disc Union wooden promo box doesn’t really do anything for me. It doesn’t even mention the Beatles anywhere on it – guess it must be a licensing issue.

John Moore

That’s right- very strict here

John Moore

Bear in mind that although it might not be the sexiest box it will be very collectible later- these boxes fetch more than CDs on auction sites- crazy eh! They are extremely limited and have to be pre-ordered- then they disappear!

Chuck Salazar

Paul, you definitely have reason, i only ‘finish off’ my Mono Box just picking up Yellow Submarine, Abbey Road and Let It Be in Stereo Mini-LP CD form.


George, you can start selling your limbs off to science for any future Beatles products.


You can almost see what will happen next ..”Beatles mono cds get the Japanese lp cd treatment”

Steve Benson

now I would be impressed if Let It Be came in a miniature box with a miniature book.


I’d just like to know if it’s gonna be a gatefold.


Oh,man! It’s a cool thing for Universal Music but a poor thing for fans. Over-issue only makes such kinda beatle collection more cheaper.

George Glazener

@Justin; you ain’t kidding! I just had to take out a 2nd mortgage on the house, cash in my kid’s college funds, take a night job delivering pizza, and start selling beanie babies at a flea market to buy everything that’s come out already. Now, with this, I’ll have to sell my Miata too.!

Philip Cohen

Also, on the same day, Universal Music of Japan will release extensive Platinum SHM-CD & SHM-SACD series by The Beach Boys, The Band & John Lennon.

I wish that I could afford all of these…but I can’t.


Just one correction Paul, you can actually buy the whole set in a wooden promo box for £440! See here:



on and on and on and on….The Beatles…..the group that never stops taking!


Is ‘Yellow Submarine’ also required to finish off the mono box ?


Considering how weak the yen is at the moment, if you can find a way to buy these direct I would go that route.


Oh God, make it stop!! My credit card and marriage can’t handle it any more.