My rankings of some classical violin music in high resolution


Folks-

So this may be of no interest, but I thought I would provide my feedback. Upfront, let me say that I could not make it at Berklee / New England Conservatory, so I went into biomedical research instead (PhD/MD). I know a great deal about the human auditory system, and somerthing about Nyquist sampling. Music is not just some "emotional" experience - there are objective measures of comparison between individuals, shaped by our bias.

My system is modest compared to some, and was put together by the great folks at Paragon sound here in Ann Arbor, MI. It consists of almost all McIntosh components, except for computer-based downloaded high res music files, including a D150 preamp, MCT 450 SACD / CD player, C22 preamp into a MC275 tube amp. The speakers are Wilson WattPuppy 7s.

Best digital, high resolution recordings I own (so far) in this category, out of 17:
1. Josuha Bell, Tchiavoksy violin concetto, Berlin Phil., Micheal Tilson Thomas;
2. Hilary Hahn, Brahms and Stravinsky, Acad. St. Martin in the Fields, Sir Nelville Mariner;
Very Good:
3. Arthur Grumiax, Mozart, concertos 3, 5;
4. Andrew Manze, Mozart - 3 violin concerti, English consort;
Good:
5. Julia Fischer, Mozart Violin Concertos, SACD and DVD;
6. John Butt, Bach Violin Concertos (Lnn Audio);
Not recommended:
7. Hilary Hahn, Bach Violin Concertos - too brittle and "compressed" sounding, played at too rapid a tempo;
8. Henryk Szeryng (one of my favorite violinists) - Bach solo violin, Phillips - DSD SACD from Japan, but I bet the master was not great due to the age of this recording.

I find it odd that there are virtually no high res recordings available in any format from violinists such as Itzhak Perlman, Michael Rabin, and others. I love almost all music, with the exception of some pop recordings, and as a teenager listened to, and saw bands live, including the Jimi Hendrix Experience, Cream, The Doors (infamous New Haven, CT concert), The Dead, The Who, the Allman Brothers with Duane and Dicky before they were famous, etc. I still have excellent hearing, which is remarkable. 

Thanks - Gerry
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Szeryng's Brahms Violin Concerto (LSO, Dorati) is stunning on Mercury.  I have it on vinyl and as a high resolution digital file.  This is not a digital recording however.  I find that violin recordings made from 1960 to about 1975 especially compelling...there is the "presence" factor there for me that is sometimes lacking in a more clinical modern digital recording.
I recently listened to Daniel Lozakovich perform the J.S. Bach Violin Concertos No. 1 & 2 on Deutsche Gramophone (24/96).  This recording bettered my Anne-Sophie Mutter, Hilary Hahn and Julia Fischer versions.  An absolutely fabulous recording!
I recently listened to Daniel Lozakovich play the J.S. Bach Violin Concertos No. 1 & 2 on Deutsche Gramophone (24/96).  It bettered my Anne-Sophie Mutter, Julia Fischer, and Janine Jansen versions by quite a ways.  A truly fabulous recording!