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Chemrat
37
Jan 21, 2019
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I have to disagree about higher sampling rates and bit lengths not making a difference, though I listen to and love vinyl and it gives me plenty of chills. The best sound and music combination I’ve heard is from a Blue-ray music-only disc of Stevie Wonder’s Songs in the Key of Life, played in 2-channel stereo, not the available surround mix. The sound simply jumped at me and took me by surprise, making the album seem completely new and full of hidden nuances. My wife remarked on it from the next room and came in to finish listening to the rest of it, which I played twice more. It was magical. It went from a universal player through a hybrid preamp and solid state amp to my speakers. I also have some high resolution downloads that sound spectacular, better than any other version of the same recording I have. There are other cases where I can’t notice a difference or prefer the vinyl over the download. I can now, as of very recently, decode very high resolution files but I don’t want to pay for them. I do have quite a few SACDs and many of those are great, while others are simply different from the vinyl and/or CD. One problem with CDs has nothing do with the limitations of 16/44.1: there are a lot of very badly mastered CDs out in the world. I don’t notice this as often with LPs, though there are obvious exceptions where you are better off listening by car stereo than home HiFi. The industry of remastering CDs has sometimes helped and sometimes not, it depends who was in charge. Many of the projects have turned out great, however. The Beatles in Mono is one nice example, in my opinion. People argue like crazy over the quality of the “Rudy van Gelder” Jazz remasters. I have five copies of Moanin’, including analog and digital, and frankly, I love them all. They do not sound the same, but I cannot pick a favorite. I think I have more copies of Kind of Blue, with the same result. Yeah, some have an extra track or two or ten. Not sure it matters. In general, I would say that care in mastering is the most important facet of putting good sound in your home, followed by preserving the data as well as possible using vinyl or high-resolution digital sources. One needs to read record reviews, sometimes old reviews, to find out which albums were mastered well. Then you can pick your source material, analog or digital, or both, as with some of the new anniversary box sets, or you can stream. I use Tidal high res and really like the classical selections available- there is some pretty obscure content that I am glad to have access to.
Jan 21, 2019
Chemrat
37
Jan 21, 2019
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I should have said that the performance is what matters most of all, and good mastering comes after that.
Jan 21, 2019
DanTreview
159
Jan 23, 2019
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Not always. There are great performances that were slaughtered by poor mastering. Much of the Billy Joel remasters fall into this category.
Jan 23, 2019
Chemrat
37
Jan 27, 2019
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Yes, I think that was what I meant about so many bad CDs out there, for example, but other media are affected by mastering, too, of course. However, great mastering of a bad performance still gives you a bad performance - that's what I meant by the additional comment.
Jan 27, 2019
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