Deja Vu all over again


The Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young remastered album is available on Qobuz for streaming at 192kHz 24bit.  It sounds great.  I have the original vinyl that I bought in the late 70s.  This remastered version has a very crisp clean sound with good soundstage depth and width.  I especially like the song, "Almost Cut my Hair". The song seems almost comical to me at the beginning but the mood changes for me as the song continues into a serious and good discussion.
I believe this digital version has little to no compression since I have my preamp volume set at 50 for my normal listening level.  Compare that to some pop albums on Qobuz at 44kHz 16bit that I play at a volume level of 27-33.
I believe the compression level is proportional to the volume level I use for my normal listening level.  For example, ROON shows the dynamic range of each of my CDs that I have ripped as FLAC files into my Library.  I see dynamic range as low as 8 and as high as 18.  The 18 is for a Telarc CD and is exceptional.  I notice my volume level for normal listening level is correlating to this Dynamic Range value.  Of course the higher dynamic range recordings have some nice loud peaks.

Previewtonywinga
I'm one who is skeptical of all the claims made about the "improved" sound from the streaming sources such as Roon.  Aside from music recorded in the last few years, that actually takes advantage of all that pure digital recording can offer, most of what we are listening to has been recorded on a 24 track (?) system, onto 2 inch tape.  Then it's been mixed onto another 2 inch tape and finally the "master" copy has been recorded onto a 3rd tape.  From this master, vinyl and CD's have been produced.  There is no system in the world that can get any sound in the future that is not present on the master tape.  I doubt very much that Roon is steaming from the original masters, so that means they are using whatever source is at hand.  You just have to listen to a CD that was "re mastered" from a dubious source to know that there is a lot of crap out there.  I think in the world of audio, there's a lot of Kool-Aid being offered and we all drink a bit of it?  Me included.  
Thanks for the review, tonywinga.  I 'm away from home right now but look forward to hearing this one when I get back.

bigtwin,  They can't get something off the master tape that isn't there, but they can do a better job of getting what is on the master tape off it and onto a  better sounding digital or analog format, or not.  Remasters have to be considered on an individual basis.  Some are major improvements, some major disappointments.

Qobuz gets their digital files from the record companies, not from whatever is lying around.  In this case, the record company probably sent them a copy of the digital file that was downsampled to make the CD.  My guess is that individual systems and taste will determine which version sounds better, the original CD, the remastered CD, or the 192/24 stream.
It is available on Tidal too (all 4 Cds, but not the vinyl LP :) ) Sounds excellent. I especially like all the outtakes that never made it to the final record.
The Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young remastered album is available on Qobuz for streaming at 192kHz 24bit. It sounds great.

Pity it’s said it’s compressed, compared to the original masters.
The first 16/44 issues are the best of the digital releases, if you prefer your music naturally dynamic and uncompressed.

Stereophiles music reviewer Tom Fine on CSNY "Deja Vu"
The first CD is the original album, sourced from the original tapes. Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering used a light hand at the mastering console and kept the original dynamics and tonal qualities. It’s superior to the two prior issues on 5" shiny plastic: It’s not so much that they were stereotypically bad CDs (although the 1994 reissue, made at the dawn of the awful Loudness Wars, is somewhat dynamics-crunched); it’s that this version is a really good demonstration of how good a CD can sound. Spin it on a top-grade player or through a good DAC and behold the state of the studio-recording art in late 1969.

We were listening last night to Jeff Beck's "Flash" and the 90’s CD was so much better than the streamed 2000’s release from my friends streamer, and this was why.

Jeff Beck Flash 1992 DR 14, 12, 15
Jeff Beck Flash 2006 DR 10, 07, 12


Cheers George
George you should read that review again.

According to Tom Fine the new CD sounds better than the previous two releases on CD. He says that this reissue, "kept the original dynamics and tonal qualities."  He says the 1994 reissue "is somewhat dynamics-crunched," but the dynamic range database has two separate entries for the 1994 reissue and even it is not compressed.

I haven’t heard of anyone saying the Qobuz version is compressed and there’s no reason it should be.

Remasters are often crunched, but sometimes they get it right. Older is not always better.



Why do I get the distinct impression that people are dissing Qobus to promote Tidal of late?Hony soit qui mal y pense ( yep, Qobus is French)
Nope, just don't like streaming in general. I don't believe the lossless bs, compression sucks.
I love streaming. The younger generation I think takes it for granted. Just wait, you too will get old and some day find it sometimes not so easy to get started. Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you’ve got till its gone? Pave paradise, put up a parking lot.
Remasters are often crunched, but sometimes they get it right.
Yes they usually are, very rarely they leave it alone, nearly always the later ones/re-issues are "dynamically crunched", great term btw, better than just saying compressed, it’s got more meaning behind it.

Cheers George
@millercarbon
I'm old enough to smell what you're cooking.
I’m apparently hearing something different from some of you.  I don’t hear compression at all on this latest hi res FLAC of Deja Vu.  Perhaps it is because I have only my vinyl copy from the 70s for reference and I understand that 33 1/3 vinyl does not have the dynamic range potential of digital.  This hi res version has the dynamic range of and/or better than my vinyl copy.  I also think the Stereophile review is referring to the first CD of this new set having the benefit of the new mastering, not the first CD of Deja Vu released some years ago.  Is it just me?  I’m finding downloaded hi res files that sound great and I find many streaming hi res files that sound great.  44.1/16bit streaming is, well just ok mostly. 
In my opinion, "remastered" means the original master was stepped on again! If it was an original digital master, well that's a different story. There are so many variations between vinyl stampings. Example, my original Chrysalis copy of Blondie - Parallel Lines kills my mofi copy of the same. That's also true for my Pat Benatar - In The Heat of the Night, except the crappier sounding copy is a CD. To each his own. Maybe you should check out a "White Hot Stamper".
Listening now on Deezer, pretty decent stuff.  Deezer seems to default to HQ which is by their definition CD-quality.However they have no control over the original mastering and I am enjoying the album but it’s not a super deal.
Post removed 
 "remastered" "later re-issues"
Nearly always means they've been compressed.

Cheers George 
You're right tony,  The Stereophile review is talking about CD 1 of the 50th Anniversary set as being the best, no doubt there.
OP.. check out Neil Young's album Home Grown on Qubuz. Fantastic!
Neil Young or someone similar,  I believe is also one of the founders/investors of the "Dynamic Range Data Base"  https://dr.loudness-war.info/ being very opposed to "compression"

Cheers George

Here 2 x Fleetwood Mac albums I listened to last night that I have a few re-issues/remastered versions of, and it’s definitely the earliest ones that have the better relaxed feel to them as they have the greater DR and quieter passages between the louder transients ones, which gives more "air" around the music.
(all green is good) red, orange, yellow compressed

https://dr.loudness-war.info/album/list?artist=Fleetwood+Mac&album=Rumours

https://dr.loudness-war.info/album/list?artist=Fleetwood+Mac&album=Fleetwood+Mac

Cheers George
According to that database my 1970s pressings of Fleetwood Mac have a dynamic range equivalent to digital.  I didn’t realize that.  So my 50 year old records are a good reference. Good thing I’ve kept my analog rig up to date.  Heart’s Dreamboat Annie and Little Queen were some of the best sounding rock albums in the mid 70s.  The bass sounded great on just about any stereo.  Shops like to use them to audition speakers back then.  The hi res versions of these albums on Qobuz sound pretty good to me but I still prefer the vinyl- especially my London pressing of Dreamboat Annie.  


Heart’s Dream Boat Annie (which I have the 1997 7243 8 19826-2) were all a little compressed (streamed/download a little worse), which means so were the masters, and there’s nothing that can be done about then.
https://dr.loudness-war.info/album/list?artist=Heart&album=Dreamboat+Annie

Cheers George
tonywinga

Thank You for the CSN&Y update.

Happy Listening!
Art for the sake of art.  The Heart albums may be somewhat compressed but I still think they are some of the best sounding rock albums of that era.  I can accept them for what they are.  For example, the Cowboy Junkies Trinity Session.  I love that album and the sound.  Sure, it is imperfect but that is it’s charm and emotion.  If you read the story about the making of that album, the recording engineer was rushed for time and didn’t get the session set up like he would have wanted.  Recently, that recording engineer remastered the Trinity Session and tried to fix some of the problems with the recording.  I almost bought that new record but then I thought, no I love it as it is.  I don’t want some redone reimagined version.  
tonywinga"According to that database my 1970s pressings of Fleetwood Mac have a dynamic range equivalent to digital."


What on earth is it that you intend to say, convey or express this makes no sense.
Because according to that database, the 1975 vinyl has an avg DR of 13 same as the CD from 1990. 

According to that database my 1970s pressings of Fleetwood Mac have a dynamic range equivalent to digital. I didn’t realize that. So my 50 year old records are a good reference. Good thing I’ve kept my analog rig up to date.


Yes but pity the stereo channel separation is 70% better on CD than vinyl.
For vinyl just 30db at 1khz and almost mono in the bass and around 20db in the highs. CD 120db all through the range. And then there’s the noise difference🤦‍♂️

Cheers George
Perhaps, but you’ll never pry my phono cartridge out of my hands.  :) 
Yes but pity the stereo channel separation is 70% better on CD than vinyl.
For vinyl just 30db at 1khz and almost mono in the bass and around 20db in the highs. CD 120db all through the range. And then there’s the noise difference🤦‍♂️

Cheers George
Yes, George, that’s nice. one problem though.

the ear hears via micro and macro peaks or transients. and the major error component of a digital signal system or a class d amplifier, is the micro and macro transient peaks are all out of place in time and level.

the part of an analog signal that a slab of vinyl and cartridge do indeed get right, is that transient.

that’s the one thing they do well, and surprise surprise, it is exactly what the ear needs to hear to able to decode a complex music signal.

so the slab of wax --- actually wins. There is a reason people think it is superior to CD. because in the fundamental way that is important, it actually is.



There is a reason people think it is superior to CD.

I think it’s mainly those with nostalgia reasons and massive record collections and big rigs, I could have stayed with it also.
I had Stax CPX electrostatic cartridge and power supply (best ever) on mega $ TT and arm.
http://www.vinylengine.com/turntable_forum/viewtopic.php?f=36&t=23803&sid=314038a158e97a8f87...

But to me CD using good R2R ladder conversion has it all over that vinyl rig, especially in sound stage image and depth focus, and the ability to give imagining outside the speakers, which gives the feeling you get up and and can walk into that image, and that’s bought mainly because of the 120db channel separation.
Cheers George

I agree with georgehifi. I do not know about the R2R ladder DACs - I use the new Esoteric K-01XD player for SACD, CD and MQA-CDs. Even the expensive (>$50) vinyl records do not compare to the sound from these CDs, and streaming is worse as well.
I recently compared 4 versions of the same recording.  It's Larry Young's "Zoltan" on his Unity album.....  Qobuzz 24 bit  192 khz,  vs  Tidal's 24 bit remast which plays in 44 khz 16 bit FLAC and their standard version  which plays at the same resolution but lower volume...  against the 1991 Mosaic CD set of the Complete Blue Note Larry Young  (cut 7 disc 3).  The Mosaic master from 30 years ago is by far the superior one, followed by both Tidal versions..  the Qobuzz was by far the worst.

It’s all about compression, either because of the vintage of the release of the album used when streamed or because it get compressed because of the streaming process itself.
Which ever it is, playing the original retail stamped release CD on a transport or "copied to a hard drive", always sounds the better to me in most cases than anything streamed.


Cheers George
@georgehifi: 


"Stereophiles music reviewer Tom Fine on CSNY "Deja Vu"
The first CD is the original album, sourced from the original tapes. Chris Bellman at Bernie Grundman Mastering used a light hand at the mastering console and kept the original dynamics and tonal qualities".

I checked out the Discogs site and didn't see any masterings by Bellman of this recording prior to this 50th anniversary release. 
I hope they'll release a CD only version. What does Rhino think guys like me are going to do with two LPs we can't play?  I don't understand the rationale. Is it about collectability?  


I checked out the Discogs site and didn't see any masterings by Bellman of this recording prior to this 50th anniversary release.
Very strange, Deja Vu was released (vinyl) in March 1970 by Atlantic Records. Yet the 1st CD, didn't as far as I can find come out till 1988 6 years after retail CD started????
Cheers George


Here’s what one verified purchaser though of the new 50th Anniversary Deja Vu on vinyl.

Holmes
2.0 out of 5 stars
Lifeless mp3 sound on vinyl.

Reviewed in the United States on May 17, 2021
Verified Purchase
Sound quality (vinyl) compressed and pushed to sound loud. Unlistenable. I have bootlegs that sound better than this cash grab. Returned for refund
And if the vinyl was this dynamically crunched, then it doesn’t hold much for the cd, as they were probably taken off the same new remaster.

Cheers George
I have both an original 1970 Monarch pressing in NM condition and the new 50th anniversary pressing. Both sound excellent but the new reissue sounds best overall. This as heard on a high resolution pure analog system. Get the remaster and listen for yourself! Does not sound lifeless, sounds nothing like an mp3.
wesheadley - That's interesting I'm surprised, thanks for the info.
george hifi

"And if the vinyl was this dynamically crunched, then it doesn’t hold much for the cd, as they were probably taken off the same new remaster".

Yikes-- I hope the above description is not accurate. I'm not about to shell out the $ untl I have a better sense of the SQ !  I've listened to it on Spotify through computer speakers and it doesn't sound bad, but I won't make a decision on this basis for an expensive purchase. 

wesheadley:

Are you able to play the CD and give us a report?


You can find discussion of sound quality along with a lot of other stuff at this link:

CSNY Deja Vu 50th anniversary reissue - May 14, 2021 * | Page 162 | Steve Hoffman Music Forums

The Steve Hoffman Music Forums is where you’ll find the most discussions of sound quality.  People start receiving this album around page 140 of the above thread.