WHen things are going very well, a trained ear quickly realizes how different different recordings sound. When they all start to sound similar you are probably missing something in regards to potential system performance.
Hearing the difference in sonics from recording to recording is one of teh great joys of having a good system IMHO. To the extent that they might also tend to trick you into thinking you are listening to a live performance, the better as well!
It's amazing how a great recording can make your system sound like there can't possibly be a system anywhere else that sounds better, and a bad recording can make you feel like you wasted every penny. Too often the quality of the source material is neglected or overlooked, and having a nice system has helped me discover just how much garbage is out there. I have recordings I can't bear to listen to they're just so poorly done.
Please ditch the receiver and give the speakers the front end they deserve.
I had Quad 57's for a long time before I (foolishly) started chasing something different with cone speakers. The Quads always gave a decisive read on the quality of recordings; some things in my collection were stunning and others were practically unlistenable. But when new speakers came into the house, I suddenly found that some of those recordings were no longer in the camp I had always believed them to be in.
An example was Rickie Lee Jone's Traffic From Paradise. On my Quads, I thought this recording was amazeballs, as the kids would say. But then with the Avalons and some other subsequent acquisitions, my enthusiasm for the recording diminished. How does one make sense of this?
the other possibility could be that you had very clean power (depnds on how late it was at night) & with clean power the music simply sounds much better.....
thanks for the responses. I know with the Maplenoll apollo/Universe combo (i have the artisan phono stage) the analog input is pretty solid. I am looking at a better amplification to upgrade that part of the chain. I think know the speakers are set. It will be interesting to see how much change with a better preamp/amp combo.
When I significantly upgraded my speakers and receiver my assessment of my CD collection changed quite a bit there were a lot of CDs that I could no longer enjoy. More recently, I added a tube amplifier and have found that my favorite mix of music has changed again. What I find interesting is that the stereo processing on the receiver seems to cover for some of the bad recordings, but the tube amp is making some sound good that didn't sound good with the receiver in any mode.
The moral of the story is every major component change has the potential to showcase your music in a new way.
Macallen may have contribute a bit but overall, experiencing with new equipment almost always causes goosebumps on my skin!
I have to agree with Shakey, a dedicated front end may bring you an even more pronounced "aha" moment!
But then with the Avalons and some other subsequent acquisitions, my enthusiasm for the recording diminished. How does one make sense of this?
frequency responce of speakers is diffrent ,i mean crossover points where music sounds is cut or emphasized.This can happen changing amps or sources
Good for you to bring this up.
What I hope is that more of my collection sounds good when I "upgrade" a component.
Too often we get hooked or charmed by a particular presentation. This or that sounds really good, avoiding the other "poorly recorded material."
What I have found is the "poorly recorded material" in my collection is not really poorly recorded, but instead it highlights a weaknesses in my system.
Using these recordings as a way to gain insight into my system's flaws has been very rewarding.
For example, I had a pr of Snell E speakers with rear firing aux. tweeters. These really made piano music ring
lots or "air." Well this was good on some recordings and not so much on others. It was a distortion that was complimentary to some types of music.
Or, take a bass shy system. Would you listen to the organ works of Bach? Probably not, but transcriptions for guitar may sound fantastic!
So, if something sounded great before you change a component and then not so great after, either you have removed a distortion or added one. It can be hard to tell and is not obvious!
Second what Bcgator said . I have many recordings where the engineers must have been 'OUT TO LUNCH' on that day ! Why do the artists accept that type of shoddy craftsmanship ?
Oh well .
I've said it before and I'll say it again...
The main thing our systems should do is tell us how well the recording engineer laid down the track.
guys, thanks for the response. I will be upgrading the amplifier for my analog and digital music so i will give an update soon for that change. When you think you have gotten all, damn is something significant doesnt make you realize there is more. This time it was quite by accident.Hopefully this will keep my eyes and ears open to other ideas. Thanks
Great thread. I almost never by music anymore when the sound quality is not rated as very high. I then take the bad recordings of music that I love and put them on my iPod where they sound great again.
+1. I take all the bad recordings in my collection and play them through my car stereo and they are all good again, thanks to a heavy hand on the tone controls and equaliser.