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ODS123

Advice for Beginners - consider this test from an audio club

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1 hour ago, TubeHiFiNut said:

I respect your position and would offer a different opinion regarding vintage recordings.

 

The late 1950s - mid 1960s Mercury Living Presence and RCA Living Stereo (pre "DynaGroove") classical libraries are incredible recordings. The jazz libraries from Blue Note, Contemporary, Pacific Jazz from the same period are also incredible.

 

Besides awesome performances, these recordings offer fidelity and resolution that easily highlight differences in components and also limitations within the system.

 

In my opinion, high rez digital is very close but my "go to" preference is still for analog via my turntables.

 

Just my opinion and YMMV. :)

 

Yes, I agree that some vintage recordings sound surprisingly good – but IMO not as good as the best state-of-the-art modern recordings.

 

I own a number of the RCA Living Stereo classical recordings from the 1950s that were remastered from the original analog tapes (in some cases 3 channel) and delivered on SACD.  One of my favorites:

 

51JG0Io3J-L.jpg

 

(I also occasionally enjoy my 1950s mono LP of this recording.)

 

I also have at least one Mercury Living Presence classical SACD that was remastered from the original 3 channel 35mm magnetic tape that was recorded in 1962, and it sounds surprisingly good considering the vintage.

 

And I have the following performance from the 1980s that was captured on 35mm film, and then remastered in Blu-ray format.  Both audio and video are surprisingly good considering the vintage.

 

51V4Y-9l-6L._SX342_.jpg

 

I occasionally enjoy this re-mastered SACD of Furtwangler’s Beethoven 9 from 1954.  This is the oldest recording in my collection that I tolerate in terms of audio quality. 

 

914l+WDRBvS._SL1500_.jpg

 

(On the other hand, I don’t routinely listen to the famous 1942 Furtwangler recording – to my ears the sound is intolerable.) 

 

I find that some recordings from the early days of DDD (mid 1980s) are unlistenable.   To me, the violins in my 1983 CD of Berstein’s recording of Barber’s Adagio for Strings sound so harsh that it’s unbearable.   On the other hand, my modern hi-resolution digital recording of Barber’s Adagio by the Dogma Chamber Orchestra has no trace of harshness, and for me this definitely tips the balance in favor of the modern recording.

 

Bottom line, IMO none of the remastered vintage recordings has audio quality equal to the best modern hi-res recordings.  And, unfortunately, IMO many vintage recordings have intolerably poor audio quality.

 

Classical music lovers often must decide which is more important:  performance quality, or audio quality of a recording.  I’m not a music scholar, and I’m not hyper-critical of a performance.  However, I have no tolerance for poor audio quality.  My favorite format for classical music is Blu-ray audio/video.  (A few Ultra HD Blu-ray videos are becoming available.)   My second choice are hi-res audio-only recordings that feature surround-sound (i.e., SACD, Pure Audio Blu-ray).  My third choice is stereo 24/96 or 24-192 FLAC downloads.

 

Of course, these are just my opinions.  

 

 

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3 minutes ago, ODS123 said:

 

That is NOT the straw man in this discussion.  The straw man is the non-existent person you guys keep attacking for saying things that haven't been said.  Like "EVERYTHING sounds the same", or even "ALL AMPS sound the same..."  ..No one ever said those things yet that is who you keep attacking.  

Attacks are not my modus operandi.

 

Having differing positions is not considered an attack.

 

Kindly point out anything that I have said to you that could even be remotely construed as an attack and I will gladly offer up an apology.

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2 minutes ago, robert_kc said:

 

Yes, I agree that some vintage recordings sound surprisingly good – but IMO not as good as the best state-of-the-art modern recordings.

 

I own a number of the RCA Living Stereo classical recordings from the 1950s that were remastered from the original analog tapes (in some cases 3 channel) and delivered on SACD.  One of my favorites:

 

51JG0Io3J-L.jpg

 

(I also occasionally enjoy my 1950s mono LP of this recording.)

 

I also have at least one Mercury Living Presence classical SACD that was remastered from the original 3 channel 35mm magnetic tape that was recorded in 1962, and it sounds surprisingly good considering the vintage.

 

And I have the following performance from the 1980s that was captured on 35mm film, and then remastered in Blu-ray format.  Both audio and video are surprisingly good considering the vintage.

 

51V4Y-9l-6L._SX342_.jpg

 

I occasionally enjoy this re-mastered SACD of Furtwangler’s Beethoven 9 from 1954.  This is the oldest recording in my collection that I tolerate in terms of audio quality. 

 

914l+WDRBvS._SL1500_.jpg

 

(On the other hand, I don’t routinely listen to the famous 1942 Furtwangler recording – to my ears the sound is intolerable.) 

 

I find that some recordings from the early days of DDD (mid 1980s) are unlistenable.   To me, the violins in my 1983 CD of Berstein’s recording of Barber’s Adagio for Strings sound so harsh that it’s unbearable.   On the other hand, my modern hi-resolution digital recording of Barber’s Adagio by the Dogma Chamber Orchestra has no trace of harshness, and for me this definitely tips the balance in favor of the modern recording.

 

Bottom line, IMO none of the remastered vintage recordings has audio quality equal to the best modern hi-res recordings.  And, unfortunately, IMO many vintage recordings have intolerably poor audio quality.

 

Classical music lovers often must decide which is more important:  performance quality, or audio quality of a recording.  I’m not a music scholar, and I’m not hyper-critical of a performance.  However, I have no tolerance for poor audio quality.  My favorite format for classical music is Blu-ray audio/video.  (A few Ultra HD Blu-ray videos are becoming available.)   My second choice are hi-res audio-only recordings that feature surround-sound (i.e., SACD, Pure Audio Blu-ray).  My third choice is stereo 24/96 or 24-192 FLAC downloads.

 

Of course, these are just my opinions.  

 

 

Nicely stated. 

 

I have a fair collection of the SACD, DVD Audio and Blu-Ray releases of some of my favorite performances from the "golden age" and will continue to get more as I find them. They do sound good.

 

I value both performance and fidelity. Also recognize the difference between listening for joy and listening to evaluate.

 

Analog still speaks to my emotions, though. ;)

 

Appreciate the conversation. :)

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2 minutes ago, ODS123 said:

Please tell me what other integrated amp has wattage meters, tone controls, a mono switch, and input leveling ...

 

Are you this critical of people who own, say, a BMW even though they have no intention of wildly exceeding the speed limit or go drifting through turns??

Your Onkyo probably provides all of those features, except the meters. You have 102dB/2.83v loudspeakers, what do you need meters for? Sell that paperweight and buy your wife something nice. Like I said, you just like the dashboard. 

 

If I ask someone why they bought a Beamer, they will give me performance based reasons which I can relate to. What they won’t say is “I know it just gets from point A to point B like other cars, but I really dig the “whatever” - pick whatever superficial non-meaningful thing you can think of. 

 

I’ve never met somebody who spent a good deal of money on an amplifier because it had watt meters - until now. 

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17 hours ago, jimjimbo said:

I've been thinking that perhaps he is the latest incarnation of the infamous "Jim Naseum"....and I'm slightly serious.....

Wow! If you really want to know let me help you out: 👀

On ‎2‎/‎20‎/‎2016 at 5:11 PM, Jim Naseum said:

 

It's an old story, and of course no one could tell the difference. It would be impossible under those rules. But watch how easy it is to demonstrate the invalidity of that kind of test. Ready?

 

Imagine two 8 x 10 photographs of the Brooklyn Bridge and surrounds. Both taken from the same spot, but one is a minute after the other, and therefore captures different people on the bridge. Now, obviously the two pictures are different as anyone can see by laying them on the table and comparing them. But, that's not the test. 

 

The test box is a closed box with a 1/4" narrow slit that runs from side to side. The pictures are placed in the box, behind the slit, and they are "played" by rolling them from bottom to top across the slit, in 15 seconds. You watching what appears in the slit as it rolls by. You see the whole picture, but not the whole picture at once. You run the standard AB/X method. You will never be able to pass this test, even though it is an absolute fact that the two pictures are different. 

 

The reason is obvious -The brain doesn't "capture" a song. You hear only the instantaneous value of sound, and never do you have the whole of A to compare to the whole of B. Just like sliding the picture across the narrow slot. 

 

Our preferences don't work the way AB/X testing works. That's so obvious it is silly. 

😎 Gotta love the internet although  Mark if you're reading this I hate you deleted all of those posts!

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22 minutes ago, ODS123 said:

The straw man is the non-existent person you guys keep attacking for saying things that haven't been said.  Like "EVERYTHING sounds the same", or even "ALL AMPS sound the same...

 

Bullshit. I already copied one post into this thread where you said just that. I also asked the question (several times) what is the difference between saying people can’t hear the difference and all amps sound the same? 

 

How about you go back and read all of your posts - especially the dumbass Richard Clark posts. Are you even paying attention to what you’re typing?

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1 minute ago, Zen Traveler said:

Wow! If you really want to know let me help you out: 👀

😎 Gotta love the internet although  Mark if you're reading this I hate you deleted all of those posts!

 

But like I said, Mark’s position is the complete antithesis of the OP’s, and no one can tie you up in knots like Mark. He will come at you from sixty different directions and bury you in data. 

 

This is just old old fashioned trolling, and I’m bored to tears with it. If my parts would have shown up like I expected them to, I’d be in the workroom doing something productive. 

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On ‎1‎/‎5‎/‎2019 at 12:01 AM, Deang said:

I feel like whacking someone with a piece of MDF. 

Hurts soooooo good:)

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@ClaudeJ1 You mentioned the Sonic Impact earlier. I used that for quite some time with my Jubilees, and I thought it sounded great. 

 

There were a lot of tests applied to these different amps a decade or so ago - I can’t find the site. What I do remember is that Tripath had some SET like behavior - where frequency response would track impedance in the upper frequencies. 

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=== just tuned for another episode of “As the Word Turns” or maybe “Another World”, now nearing 48 freakin’ pages. I’ve seen many say they’ve had enough or am growing bored with the repetitive comments. How’s about we free some Forum memory and call a halt to this at page 50? Nothing being said anyway. Let’s use the George Castanza scene when he double dipped his chip when another guest objected and suggested - “ just take a bite and END IT”. 

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ODS, why do you keep referencing the pharmaceutical industry in this discussion?  If the audio companies were as guilty of data fabrication/deletion in clinical trials, and outright fraud, as the pharmaceutical companies, the former would cease to exist.  You can't be unaware of how many companies have been caught up in this (such as GSK's $3 billion settlement over false claims about Avandia safety; and what about Vioxx?). 

 

Maynard

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2 hours ago, robert_kc said:

My second choice are hi-res audio-only recordings that feature surround-sound (i.e., SACD, Pure Audio Blu-ray).  My third choice is stereo 24/96 or 24-192 FLAC downloads.

24 bit/192 Khz. are a waste of time and money, even it they are done on Blue Ray standard media. Talk to Dr. Mark Waldrep of AIX about that. I did.

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1 hour ago, tube fanatic said:

ODS, why do you keep referencing the pharmaceutical industry in this discussion?  If the audio companies were as guilty of data fabrication/deletion in clinical trials, and outright fraud, as the pharmaceutical companies, the former would cease to exist.  You can't be unaware of how many companies have been caught up in this (such as GSK's $3 billion settlement over false claims about Avandia safety; and what about Vioxx?). 

 

Maynard

 

I am, and don't forget about AstraZeneca making off-label recommendations to physicians regarding Seroquel.  Those are pharma companies acting badly and rightfully paying a high price. Willfully falsifying or ignoring data is to blame, not the science of clinical trials.  And I mention clinical trials b/c they do an excellent job of separating the real from the imagined, something which I feel is sorely needed in this hobby.

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2 hours ago, Deang said:

 

Bullshit. I already copied one post into this thread where you said just that. I also asked the question (several times) what is the difference between saying people can’t hear the difference and all amps sound the same? 

 

How about you go back and read all of your posts - especially the dumbass Richard Clark posts. Are you even paying attention to what you’re typing?

 

No, I didn't.  I did not say all audio gear (e.g.,  not speakers), nor did I say ALL amps (I stipulated modern amps that engineered to be linear).  

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15 hours ago, Deang said:

Your Onkyo probably provides all of those features, except the meters. You have 102dB/2.83v loudspeakers, what do you need meters for? Sell that paperweight and buy your wife something nice. Like I said, you just like the dashboard. 

 

I bought the MA6600 when I owned Paradigm S8 v2s.  They were not nearly as efficient AND they had beryllium tweeters which are very very expensive to replace.  The wattage meters were hugely helpful in keeping the volume well back from the tweeter danger zone.  ..The amp was NOT overkill then.  ...Yes, it definitely is now.  But no, I won't sell it.  I love the look, the features and, yes, the wattage meters.

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1 hour ago, ClaudeJ1 said:

24 bit/192 Khz. are a waste of time and money, even it they are done on Blue Ray standard media. Talk to Dr. Mark Waldrep of AIX about that. I did.

 

Another topic that is hotly debated.  

 

Have you listened to high-res deliverables (e.g., SACD, Blu-ray, hi-res download) for recordings that have hi-res provenance (i.e., recorded and mastered in hi-res)?    If you can’t hear a difference – then OK.  (Some people reportedly can’t hear a difference in amps.)    C'est la vie.   To each their own. 

 

It’s important to point out a distinction.   There are still people who copy a CD to their PC, convert it to 24bit/96kHz FLAC and say: “I don’t hear a difference”.  Or they’ll buy a decades old recording that has been remastered and say: “I don’t hear a difference”.    Garbage-in/garbage-out.   The critical issue is provenance – i.e., high quality throughout the entire recording and delivery chain.

 

All new classical music recordings are recorded and mastered in hi-res, and almost all are available in a hi-res consumer deliverable (i.e., SACD, Pure Audio Blu-ray, Blu-ray, Ultra HD Blu-ray or hi-res download).  And I find that these usually have excellent audio quality, and I enjoy them immensely.    Moreover, modern classical recordings almost always offer surround-sound (in addition to a stereo track), and sometimes have hi-def video.  Video is essential to ballet and opera, and IMO very enjoyable for classical concerts.   And Blu-ray is capable of displaying an opera’s libretto on the screen, which is extremely useful.  And Blu-ray has much greater storage capacity compared with the same size CD disc.  Bottom line, newer technologies have capabilities that CDs can’t deliver.

 

The assertion that people can’t hear the difference between CD and hi-res in a double-blind test is like the assertion that people can’t hear the difference in amps in a double-blind test.  We’ll be here for another 50 pages debating it …

 

If a modern recording is recorded and mastered at 24bit/192kHz, why would you buy a consumer deliverable that has been down-sampled into 30+ year-old storage technology (i.e., 16bit/44.1kHz Redbook CD), vs. buying the recording in its native format (e.g., Pure Audio Blu-ray disc or 24/192 FLAC download)?  Similarly, if the recording was captured in hi-res DSD – why not buy the SACD or DSD download, vs. transcoding it and down-sampling it into 16bit/44.1kHz PCM (i.e. CD)?

 

SACD, Blu-ray, and hi-res downloads are mature, well established technologies.   For the music I enjoy (classical) there is a wealth of modern recordings in hi-res, with new hi-res recordings available every month.  

 

OTOH, if someone only listens to recordings that are several decades old, then they’re stuck with what WAS state-of-the art recording technology several decades ago.  (Caveat:  as discussed in my last post, some good quality vintage analog master tapes have been digitized in hi-res, remastered, and delivered in hi-res, sometimes with fairly good results.   But IME generally not as good as modern high-quality hi-res recordings.)

 

Music genre is a major factor in the relevance of hi-res recordings.  For the classical music I love, hi-res is highly relevant.

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2 hours ago, richieb said:

=== just tuned for another episode of “As the Word Turns” or maybe “Another World”, now nearing 48 freakin’ pages. I’ve seen many say they’ve had enough or am growing bored with the repetitive comments. How’s about we free some Forum memory and call a halt to this at page 50? Nothing being said anyway. Let’s use the George Castanza scene when he double dipped his chip when another guest objected and suggested - “ just take a bite and END IT”. 

 

2 hours ago, Deang said:

Agreed. 

 

I see no reason to justify locking this thread and I believe censoring should be the absolute last resort...!!!!

 

IMHO it’s better to let all sides state their opinions and offer their evidence and facts of why they have formed their opinion. Then everyone can decide for themselves which side of the debate they fall on. 🙂 

 

If you are tired of the thread just walk away and spend your time doing something that would make you happy.

 

Long ago I protested the shutting down and editing threads instead of dealing directly with the offenders of the forum rules and I still believe this.

 

It is by a persons actions and thoughts revealed in time that will help expose the truth and any motives behind what we do.

 

If you want this thread to stop quit participating and it will die a natural death.

 

Just ask yourself if you would like your opinions to be buried because someone else disagrees and then you might sence the danger in such actions and why it should be a last resort...!

 

miketn

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I thought Rich was suggesting to stop

participating, and that’s what I was agreeing with. However, I also believe that at the point a person is clearly baiting and trolling, it’s perfectly okay to lock a thread.

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4 hours ago, ClaudeJ1 said:

Not really. According to PWK and my own measurements over decades of outdoors vs. indoors (of which Tom Danley does the same thing in his new and old digs). The inverse square law is the telltale. When you move from 1 meter to 3, the resultant Lack of SPL reduction means you are in the 90% reverberant field and it no loner attenuates according to the law, which only works anechoically or outdoors. This partially and probably explains the widespread use of near field monitors.

 

 

Yes, and PWK found that, in one of his rooms, 3 doublings of distance (2 feet to 16 feet) produced about an 8 or 9 dB reduction in SPL, on the average, 20 to 20K, rather than the 18 dB decline that would be expected if the inverse square law was in effect.  It works in an anechoic chamber or outdoors atop a flagpole, but not indoors.   PWK concludes that reflected sound amounts to 9/10 of the sound we hear in such a room.*  He thus argues that it would be hard to avoid a reverberant field, as long as the speakers are sufficiently distant from the listeners, indoors.

 

*The Great Major Breakthrough No. 29 or "Reverberant Field Speakers" by Paul W. Klipsch

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