The problem with the music


There are lots of people who frequent this site that have spent significant amounts of money to buy the gear that they use to reproduce their music. I would never suggest that you should not have done that, but I wonder if the music industry is not working against you, or at least, not with you.

For the most part studios are using expensive gear to record with, but is it really all that good? Do the people doing the recording have good systems that can reproduce soundstage, detail and all the other things that audiophiles desire, or do they even care about playback?

I know there are labels that are sympathetic to our obsessions, but does Sony/Columbia, Mercury, or RCA etc. give a rats #$%&@ about what we want?

Recordings (digital) have gotten a lot better since the garbage released in the mid 80's. Some of them are even listenable! BUT lots of people are spending lots of money to get great music when the studios don't seem that interested in doing good recordings. Mike Large, director of operations for Real Worl Studios said "The aim of the music is to connect with you on an emotional level; and I'd be prepared to bet that the system you have at home does that better than any of the systems we make records on."

Do recording engineers even care about relating the emotion of the music, or are they just concerned about the mechanics?

What do you think, and can/ should anything be done about it?
nrchy
I alwaus wondered when thier attitude will end up like this...

"Whats the point in spending craploads to make good recordings when everyone will steal these as mp3's anyway?"
I think it goes a bit farther than the technology used. Part of it is the recording engineers know-how. If it was just the technology, all LPs from the 60s-80s would consistently sound like s**t.
I agree that some or maybe MOST engineers, producers, and music companies don't care much for recording quality. Seems the small labels like Chesky, Reference, Mapleshade, etc. that are owned by ONE caring person do the best jobs. Telarc seems to be doing a great job at creating natural-sounding orchestral recordings, and they use audiofile-grade equipment.

I'm VERY pleased with most classical multichannel recordings I've bought on DVD-A and SACD; I've certainly kept more than I've sold.

I think each of us should e-mail the companies that produced that BAD recording we just listened to and tell them why we won't be buying any more like it. MAYBE someone will listen. I know that Columbia/CBS/Sony finally figured out they were making excrable recordings in the '60s and '70s. Their stuff from the '90s and '00s sounds MUCH better.
.
You might also consider the remote possibility that they, as professionals, actually know more about this than you do.
To suggest that because you work for a big corporation, you don't care about the quality of your craft is, I think, a bit harsh. Many honourable people are cogs in the big machine and perform their job within the limitations imposed upon them by the corporation. This is probably why some people move on to form small audiophile labels where they have greater control over the process.

I also don't think that the equipment they use is poor. Our playback systems and the limitations of the media which are used are far greater constraints on quality than the gear used to produce the original master, or an alleged bad attitude on the part of recording engineers.

I would be more concerned with the point made by Slappy. After all, if mass market consumers only want mp3's, then maybe the studios will decide only to record masters in mp3. And it's the mass market that pays the bills that drive the industry, not a few audiophiles like us. What a horror that would be,although we wouldn't have to spend near so much money on our systems if the upper limit of the recording was lowered.

However, I remain optimistic. As we continue to develop media with greater storage capacity, there will be less of a need to save space with data compression. We will soon have the advantages of digital with a storage medium that contains as much information as analog.
Pabelson, which ones, since none or few of them seem to agree on how things should sound. There are some companies that continually put out quality recordings, others that consistantly put out poor quality recordings.

What am I not hearing that I should be hearing?

Which of these are doing it right. Or don't you really have anything to contribute to this discussion? How about the quote from a gentleman involved in the business? Doesn't he know anything either?
Go buy a TACET or MDG DVDA or SACD. Bring about $30 a pop. Will do more for your system than ten grand in electronics. As in just about everything else Europe is ahead of us in audio. Just my opinion of course.
Slappy nailed it. My A&R friends are saying as much.
This obsession with recording quality is surely an audiophile disease and tends to ever diminish the circle of music played by many of my audio geek friends. It's time to unlearn this emphasis on recorded quality and put the focus back were it belongs, on the music. I love my mono records of jazz from the early 50s. Much of it is poorly recorded, and some of my original pressings have been loved by previous owners that were less than sympathetic to the delicate nature of their surfaces. Honest, I don't even notice. To spend an hour with Miles or Chet, to have the ghosts of long-dead sorcerers haunt my listening room; it's really all I want. Even the rock records that I grew up with, and those screechy Columbia classical recordings don't phase me a bit. I pity all of you that are held back from becoming one with the music because of imperfections in the technology. Perhaps evolving hi-rez formats will be the panacea that you seek.
Nrchy,

Although the components in your systems are all excellent, they are a very poor match.

The combination of equipment you own will on a few occasions be spectacular but most of the time on most average recordings be grating and harsh. LP's are probably good but that's the easy part. CD quality is outstanding here of late, I have just bought 50 cd's from megadeth to Keb Mo to Gergiev SACD and they were all excellent. Your system is the problem not the recordings.

Please don't think this is a personal attack or a cheap shot because if you came to see me and you described your system, I would tell some stuff has gotta change.

If you want specifics i'll give them to you, let me state you don't need better equipment you need different equipment.
Cinematic Systems..

So you are saying that all the recordings are superb and nobody should doubt thier quality, it is just Nrchy's crappy mismatched system?

Sorry, but i find that kind of hard to swallow.

Personally i think your comment was totally off topic and if you want to tell Nrchy he doesent know synergy from his ass that maybe you should do it in a private email than publicly stating it here on this thread.

Looking at this thread it looks more of a discussion about the level of desire in modern recording companys to produce high quality recordings, which i think most people would agree that not all recording agencys put quality of recordings as thier top priority. I could be wrong but i could have sworn that is where the discussion was going.

Plus nobody likes a know-it-all

But that's just my humble opinion. ;)

Mr. Singh
New and Improved Slappy outsourced from India.
We are forgetting the issue that the recording people are "THERE," at the original event.

To make an analogy with photography, even a guy with a crappy $199.00 point and shoot digital from CompUSA (at the original event) will go home with better quality images than what's printed in the newspaper the next morning.

Point I'm making, these guys have a great job and even with very good (forget state of the art) equipment, they will capture the artist with more fidelity than most formats the record companies are throwing at us today.

Don't believe me? Get someone in the business to run you off a copy of a analog master tape on half track, 15 IPS or 30 IPS and compare with SACD, Redbook or even the best LP. You will be amazed.

I am currently working on my fifth and sixth master dupes, (Pink Floyd and Art Garfunkel). I never liked Aerosmith until I owned a master dupe, now I listen to the group and hear things I never knew existed.

I am scheduled to record some classical musicians associated with the Dallas Symphony this fall.

It WILL be with a high speed analog tape machine and large diaphragm tube microphones. I can't wait to see if my system can reproduce what I hear live.
Well Slappy,

My advice had nothing to do with being liked, and like I said it was not meant as a cheap shot. If you knew anything about equipment you'd have some insight about what Nrchy systems problem is. Look at the pictures if they are up to date, I'm 99% certain what needs to be done.

BTW I never said his system was crap. but it may be the source of his recent experiences more than any recording he's bought.

I love the way you backed off from the topic..."not all agencies" well duh and what kind of miracle worker can make Ashley Simpson sound good? There was vast generalizations that the recording industry mainly turns out garbage... your assertion infact... Catering to MP3 users.

Typical audiophile response to my assertions, I just said I bought 50 recordings of an incredibly diverse genre's and labels and only one is "bad" the rest are good to outstanding. So my experience is in direct conflict with the rest of the posters in this thread except of course my long lost twin brother Pabelson. Sup bro!

"So you are saying that all the recordings are superb and nobody should doubt thier quality, it is just Nrchy's crappy mismatched system?"

I'm saying if you can't thoroughly enjoy 85%-90% of the recordings you buy then your system may be messed up. People get paid to make recordings and like anyone they like to keep their jobs. They don't keep their jobs by turning out trash and not caring about quality even if there is pressure otherwise.

I will tell you that I have very recent experience with transforming a pair of Kharma midi Exquisites from selective quality playback to one that makes nearly every recording sound good. Recordings that were "bad" suddenly are intriquite and exquisite. Hmmm and to think it had nothing to do with changing power cords!

But what I did was a "know it all thing", you wouldn't understand.

Later.
Slappy is that Singh Song?
Cinematic_systems writes:
I have just bought 50 cd's from megadeth to Keb Mo to Gergiev SACD and they were all excellent.
Are you referring to the two Gergiev SACDs with the Kirov Orchestra on Philips? Sheherazade and the Shostakovich? The former is pretty dire and the latter substandard. Just trying to get a reference point.

Regards,
Metralla,

Picture at an Exhibition and Scheherazade, are the two discs.

Scheherazade isn't great but dire?...that's being overly critical. On the 5 systems I have heard it on this is not the case.

The Moussorgsky is very good. Neither are unlistenable or trash.

I certainly didn't get the feeling that no one cared about the recordings and that they were limited to appeal to low resolution systems. Ones better than the other.

Focusing on Scheherazade;

The Scheherazade is definitely one of those borderline recordings that take very little to make sound "dire" but when systems are operating properly it is satisfactory. I have heard a dramatic difference in the way systems handle this recording and sometimes dire would be a good word.

Systems that make Scheherazade sound "dire" just needed to be fixed. So now you have a better reference where I'm at.
I wholeheartedly agree with your assessment of the recording industry's lack of interest in the ultimate quality of the recording, they are simply in it for the money. I submit as evidence the lack of variety in artistic output (this is a VERY diplomatic way of saying that I think most new music SUCKS!.
There will be defenders of the industry as a whole, but all they can really do is mention the exceptions to the rule. Sure there are many engineers, and some company owners who care about the product, but the majors are driven by the mighty dollar, and the vagaries of bottom line minded stockholders.
Thankfully, we have each other. For feedback regarding new music, recordings of merit, and fine performances, I would be lost without the wealth of information I garner from the friends I have made in the field, meaning you all. I take this opportunity to thank you all for your priceless opinions about gear and recordings. It is the only information I rely on for purchasing new music - I read all I can, talk to people, pick their brains, and finally make up my own mind about purchases. My stongest influence is the opinion of people whose taste and integrity I respect. I am certain thal I am not alone in this.
In the final analysis, the best we have is each other.
Thank You,
Ray
An interesting debate(great points by Slappy and Viridian) but I can't totally relate to Nrchy's opening point.

At the end of the day it is an individual perspective on how we view and listen to music-some have freely admitted on here they have enough music to last them the rest of their lives,others fanatically explore and others are more interested in the quality of recording than the actual music.This hobby clearly attracts people to whom the music is secondary to the equipment.
It's hard to fit everyone in one jar.

So why should we expect engineers to exhibit any less variety?-they are bound to be made up out of charlartans,greedy individuals and people with the soundest integrity and skill hellbent on getting to the core of the musical statement.

Audiophiles tend to make the kind of rash generalisations about music (no new good stuff,all badly recorded blah blah)that they wouldn't like pointed back at themselves.

As for the wider question why should the big record labels worry about a very small niche market?

In my book the responsibility of good sound reproduction lies mostly with one person or group of people-the artists themselves.
I say that with the knowledge that smaller artists struggle with this due to budget.
As a generalization, has the recording industry ever been interested in, or rather, concerned about, making audiophile quality recordings? Is there a past era that excelled the current era of recording?

I for one would like to have Cinematic_Systems post his suggestions on improving Nrchy's system, why do so privately?
Believe me, No recording engineer is part of the problem. It's the mass production end of things that screw things up. Any master is better than what you get to purchase. Even the worse of the masters.
There is no problem with the music. It is what it is. I would rather listen to an attenuated, very low dynamic range CD of Furtwangler's 1944 recording of Beethoven's 5th Symphony than the best recording of some third rate rock group. Of course a better recording technically makes the listening a more enjoyable or even a sublime experience. The Raphael String Ensemble of Brahm's two String Sextets engineered by Hyperion's Tony Faulkner is one such recording. A great system will only make that great recording reach its potential.
...has the recording industry ever been interested in, or rather, concerned about, making (audiophile) quality recordings...
Oh yes. Already in the '60s companies were making concerted efforts to improve the qualty of their recordings. This isnot to say they don't do so now (some contemporary classical recordings are very good and far outclass the actual musical performance IMO).

Unfortunately, however, the cd versions of many older recordings are abysmal.
Unlike much of the classical stuff, contemporary rock/etc recordings are often disappointing (bloated upper bass, pronounced mid-highs, etc).
while i agree that (some) newly recorded music sounds like it was recorded on a kenner close n play i disagree that cd's have some how been overlooked by the engineer's in the studio & that the recordings are geared to mp3 format with the exception of brittany spears type crap.

my tastes in music are very wide from artist like miles davis & red garland to sepultura & disturbed with the recordings having been made right from the very introduction of cd's to the disturbed cd im listening to right now that was released a little over a year ago & for the most part im very satisfied with the quality of the recordings.

allthough i dont agree with cinematic systems delevery of what he said or even the fact that nrchy's rig was commented on in such a way i do agree that you cant just plop any old cd player into a rig & expect it to give a great performance & the same thing can be said about spinning vynal,my rig sucks with vynal but excells to the extreme with digital.

also for a guy to say that NEW MUSIC SUCKS shows me that no matter how the music is recorded he will not be happy with it,who would think its recorded well if they hate the artist?

keep in mind im not commenting on nrchy's rig here as i know absolutely nothing about his set up but i also gotta agree with cinematic systems comment on power cords,i see a ton of members who arent happy with the sound they are getting spend ridiculous amounts of time & cash fartin around with power cords,power conditioners & cabling trying to make a poorly matched system give acceptable sound & it will never happen.

if your not happy with how your rig is presenting the music weather it be from cd or vynal you will not fix it by swappin a few cables around you need to fugure out which component is causing it & deal with accordingly.

im no expert on anything but i do know that if anybodys blaiming the recording industry & their supposed lack of recording skills for why their rig aint makin it then its gonna be one hell of a long haul.

mike.
Nrchy: Please forgive the tone of my last post, and then let me explain its point. You seem to attribute the poor quality you find in many recordings to the quality of the equipment used in recording studios. I think you're wrong about that. People I've talked to who do recordings generally choose their equipment carefully. They have to think about more than just sound quality, but they will not tolerate anything less than great sound quality. And they know it when they hear it, which is their business. It's only our hooby.

The variability in quality comes not so much from the equipment as from the decisions they make about everything from mike placement to EQ. Getting a good sound is no easy task, as anyone who's tried it will tell you. Plus, they have to make a recording to sound good in a wide variety of environments and systems.

Now, it's often suggested that the majors engineer recordings to sound good on earbuds and boomboxes. There may be some truth to that, especially for pop releases, many of which seem to have little in the way of dynamic range, for example. I haven't heard a really bad jazz recording in a while, though I have heard some with very different recording styles. Depending on your tastes, you might like some styles more than others.
Cinematic_systems while I am not as smart as you, so I am incapable of putting together a quality system (appearantly only people with the same gear as you are capable of this, does this mean that all the other manufactureres should just go out of business?), you ignore the comments made by Mike Large. He is deeply involved in the process, but maybe he too doesn't know as much as you.

What level of system does a person have to own to be able to hear or comment on the quality of recordings? If I only have a boombox will that prevent me from hearing the difference between and good CD and a poorly recorded, mastered, or produced CD?
Nrchy,

Just typical audiophile crybaby BS in response to a criticism of your system. I thought being a biker you might have a little thicker skin. I think I tried to make it very clear that I wasn't attacking you or taking a cheap shot.

Yet instead of asking me why I would say what I said, you assume I've got something to sell or my opinion is related to a decision you didn't make that I would have, "buy my system its better." Well that wasn't my answer, infact I was going to engage in a process to help you figure something out that I already know.

There are many ways to solve your problem (better equipment clearly isn't one of them) but you have to make a decision about 2 things, Can you give up the best of what you have now to elevate the quality of a majority of recordings? and Can you define what is missing from so many recordings that it prompted you to make this post in the first place?

Lets fix this problem, I 'll see if i can't get someone who has given me a chance to do what seems to be the impossible around here...make most CD's sound very good on their system.

Now which has a better long term outcome?, having most of your CD's sound good? or continue bitching about the quality of CD's something you have no control over.

What's funny is most people just want to tell me i'm full of it and Mike Large's doom and gloom is acceptable "grumble, grumble". instead of having a curiosity about how I've been able to do it in my system and many others.

Have you seen my system? DIY speakers, Yamaha M35 amp, Cambridge DVD Player....hardly the kind of equipment you have and yet i'm very happy with cd quality.

PS: I'm listening to a compilation disc I got from Paste magazine with many low budget recordings on them and the sound is good and listenable. System (GO8, SCA2, SCM20A-2)
I am not a recording engineer so I am just going by what I have been told...but I thought that the root of the problem was the use of dozens of mics with mixdown happening months later in a studio perhaps in a different country. This is driven by the great cost of hiring an orchestra, and the need to keep sessions short. Going back to play it again because a mic was not perfectly positioned is a NO- NO. In this scheme it is the mixing engineer who really determines how the product sounds, as best he can with the tracks he has to work with. One recording of the Sant Saens Organ concerto was produced by recording the orchestra in one hall, and some time later the organist in another hall (wearing a headset). In this instance it worked quite well.

The Tacet and MDG discs that I recommend always give credits, along with the musicians, to the technical staff, (tonmeister) and usually list the equipment such as mics used. In the Apollo space program one important thing that was done to assure quality was very simpleĀ… having a label on every piece of equipment bearing the signatures of the people who assembled and tested the unit.

It is unfortunate that the number of recording labels that do strive for sonic quality are few, and the selection of music therefore limited.
Hey Slappy-Send Cinematic your Radio Shack speakers you use to use!
What a 'rig'!
I'm with slappy

pompous pompous pompous

ever heard the saying "all hat & no cattle"?
David99

Heh, i aint letting those babys go without some serioius cash involved. (laugh) Those babys got me through some tough times!

Cinematic, yer still just basically saying Nrchy doesent know what he is talking about, yer totally hijacking this thread and re directing it. This is not about Nrchy's system, this is about the quality of recordings that are being made. some are great, some arent.

Here is an idea, how about you go to a mechanic and ask about the merits of a particular motor oil, how about instead of answering he instead tells you your car sucks and you made a lousy choice of buying it, that your wheels brand is all wrong, the color is wrong, and your obviously ill informed since you diddnt buy the triple bladed windshield wipers.

You say it was not a cheap shot, i fail to see how.

Either way, who cares. Nrchy's virtual system is not exactly up to date ya know.

Im of a belief that good sound is pretty damn easy to get, then again, maybe im not spoiled to the point where i consider top-stellar-untouchable-uncompromised-performance "good"

Ive got a total of 3 systems, only one i have posted. Personally, i think they all sound great. They would probably make your golden ears bleed though. Too bad. I guess i consider it an advantage to be able to listen to music instead of criticizing the system, regardless to the quality of recording.

That is one thing i hope never changes.

I hope that did not come across as a crybaby, after seeing that devastating blow to Nrchy's ego you delivered i sure wouldnt want such a crippling insult directed my way.

Dont worry Nrchy, just take it one day at a time, eventually those emotional bruises will heal.

LOL

Mr. Singh,
New and Improved Slappy Outsourced from India.
It's hard to type through the tears, the screen is all foggy.

Cinematic you still ignore the points of my post. "you ignore the comments made by Mike Large. He is deeply involved in the process, but maybe he too doesn't know as much as you?" and "What level of system does a person have to own to be able to hear or comment on the quality of recordings? If I only have a boombox will that prevent me from hearing the difference between and good CD and a poorly recorded, mastered, or produced CD?"

The questions were prompted by the comments of Mike Large, not that my system sounds like crap, and I need cinematic to help me replace everything I own with lo-fi gear.
Im still not sure where i see Nrchy stating that recordings sound like crap on his system and he cannot listen to them. There ARE bad recordings out there, that is a fact and anyone who says all recordings are great is an idiot.

Ive got some bad recordings, but i still love em for the music on them, good recording or not, and they certainly sound better on my system than with some crap walmart setup, but that doesent mean the recording was well done.

This totally reminds me of threads i have seen in the past...

"Bad experience with dealer"
"i went to a retail shop and blah blah blah, the dealer was a total jerk to me blah blah blah"

Every single time i see a thread like that some idiot who was not even there comes in defending the dealer to the death as if it is not possible for a dealer to be a jerk, and do everything they can to make the victim of the bad treatment look like the monster. Yeah, yer hearing 1 side of the story, and guess what, the person very well may have been treated poorly for no reason, yeah there is the chance they were actually the jerk, but it CAN go both ways.

Most dealers ive dealt with really kick ass, great guys, very helpful, and very polite, but i have had a run in or two with the occasional jerk.

Same goes with recordings, some are good, some are bad. Does it mean a bad recording is intolerable to listen to? No, not really. Unless it was done in some guys garage with garage sale equipment with thier instruments out of tune and no talent for playing.. However, bad recordings can still be a pleasure to listen to, because you listen to the music more than the recording, and the inefficiencies of the recording can easily be overlooked by the great musical content.

Does that mean an excellent well thought out system will make a bad recording sound like a true to life LIVE experience? No. Of course not. But a great system wont hurt the recording, it might make it a little more forgivable, but it wont make a bad recording great.

I guess i really got off on the wrong foot with some individuals here, but it reminded me so much of the "Dealers can do no wrong" attitude i see from time to time. Instead of acknowledging that bad recordings exist, and attacking the poster's system and knowledge seems a little bit weak and rude.

Guess what? Some recordings Suck. That is all there is to it.

I dont remember Nrchy stating he couldnt listen to these cause they sounded bad. He probably does listen to the occasional bad recording because the quality of the music not only makes it worth it but very enjoyable.

However, wouldnt it be nice if the recording was properly done as well? Does it mean your system sucks because a poor recording doesent sound like yer in the room with them when they record it?

He was just questioning the level or recording equipment some people use and looking to use discussion to explore the idea that some recordings might be done poorly because of a lack of concern by the recording agency. That has absolutly nothing to do with his system. A poor recording is still a poor recording, even on the best thought out and engineered system.
There's no shortage of recordings that lost something (sometimes because of hacks and criminals) when they got made into mass produced lps or cds. Sometimes people can like the end result anyway, (i like the way some paintings look more in a book than i do when i'm in the gallery). Once in a while a lousy computer burn of a cd made from a cheap ass piece of vinyl can sound surprisingly good even in the sick mind of an audiophile. Have you been in a room that you thought would sound like crap and ended up being wrong about it? A musicians union hall i went to in the bay area nearly had the dimensions of a large hall way, (the acoustic bass, reeds, trumpet, marimba and drums sounded gorgeous). Sometimes it goes the other way. Recordings, venues and components that show alot of promise don't always trigger a pavlovian response. Assumptions about music, audio equipment and acoustics often have a way of biting you in the ass. It might not be as fun if everything was just the way you expected it to be.
As odd as this is going to sound there is some correlation between how good the recordings are and your system it is played on as well as the room it is in. As I am in the process of building a room for my system, the living room is the only place to put my current system. As an engineer, not an audio engineer, I like to know how things work and try various alternatives to see how things react. I currently have CDs that is very difficult to listen to due to instruments not sounding like the instruments that are playing and the harshness it creates. It is as non-emotional as it gets. So one day a friend came over and brought an active crossover with him. We played for several hours and the crossover eliminated the room problems and allowed us to alter the upper frequency issue I was having. It made ALL of the CDs I had sound more than listenable. There were things on the recording that would never have been heard otherwise. It was amazing. The Scheherazade SACD, that sounded all congested and not much life, had all of its instruments laid out there in a wide soundstage. It made the CDs that a friend of mine recorded in his basement and used software to eliminate the outside occasional noises sound more cohesive. It made the instruments sound like the instruments that we know should be playing. It was the most amazing altering of the preconceived notion I had about CDs and their recordings. All I am saying is that it is not entirely the recordings issue that is causing it to sound bad, as hard as it is to believe that. As with everything else in the audiophile world there are no absolutes.
Well Nrchy,

Real world studios uses ATC loudspeakers and the money they have spent on production facilities sounds like he was just shining you on a bit. No harm in that.

Look All I see is people backing away and softening their loud and clear statements about how pathetic recordings are. But maybe thats the most i'll get out of this thread is people backing off a little on the head end of this hobby.

So ok, I figure a clock radio is all you need to get emotional impact and a wisely chosen $800 system should be enough to appreciate bad to ok to mediocre to good to great recordings. As your system improves the more discerning one can be. But "Mediocre" should never turn bad with a better system.

I went out of my way to make clear I did not think you had bad equipment or a bad system but felt that there might be an oppurtunity to make more recordings a positive experience for you within what you were saying and the nature of your equipment as photographed.

The bad match was the Klyne to Krell to Kharma's a system which nolonger exists from what I understand now. But there is a problem with that setup which can make it jekyll and hyde. But that point is mute.

My main point was recordings on the whole sound very good on average versus 10 years ago and pro studios have excellent equipment, the best having better than the best audiophile speaker systems.
That was a great post Slappy!!
Cinematic
I did not see anybody making loud and clear statements about how pathetic recordings are. I do see statements that say that some recordings are pretty crappy, and i dont think anyone will disagree with that. Looks like you are somewhat confused.

and once again.... i repeat.....
What was being questioned was the level of desire of the production companys to create audiophile recordings....

But i do see you tootin yer own horn about how yer right and everyone is backing off, which i dont really see that either champ. To tell the truth, you went off the deep end here thinking that everyone is saying all recordings are crap, i cannot find a single instance where that happens. Your entire arguement is built up agianst something that you imagined. So, if you think yer winning, then go on with yer badass self and give yourself a big ol victory kiss! I'll sit back and smile just to know you made yourself so darn happy and feel good inside, and to know that in some wierd way i helped make your night and even threw on a couple timbers to your raging forest fire of an ego :)

And Since im wrong, and obviously backing off, why dont you go ahead and pull out some quotes off this thread from us shouting out all loud and clear that all recordings are pathetic, just one more little boot in our butts as we go scampering away from your brilliant logic and insight :)

Anyways folks, im outta here, got tomorrow off, getting my amp back and a new AV rack! TIME TO PLAY!!!!!!!!!
Cinematic wrote- "Real world studios use ATC speakers" and "Pro studios have excellent equipment,the best having better than the best audiophile speaker systems"

Cinematic-Correct me if Im wrong,but I read this as, ATC speakers are better than the best audiophile speakers?
By the way.You forgot to disclose 'again' you are a ATC dealer.
The point is "MOOT".
Geffen records out in Santa Monica have engineered a couple of records and they don't use ATC speakers, or better than the best audiophile speaker systems.
I know, I have speant alot of time there.
"I did not see anybody making loud and clear statements about how pathetic recordings are. I do see statements that say that some recordings are pretty crappy, and i dont think anyone will disagree with that. Looks like you are somewhat confused."

I alwaus wondered when thier attitude will end up like this...

"Whats the point in spending craploads to make good recordings when everyone will steal these as mp3's anyway?"

"Their" is a few recordings? or is "their" industry execs?

I agree that some or maybe MOST engineers, producers, and music companies don't care much for recording quality.

Most engineers make a few recordings?
-----------------------------------------------------------
"and once again.... i repeat.....
What was being questioned was the level of desire of the production companys to create audiophile recordings...."

"have just bought 50 cd's from megadeth to Keb Mo to Gergiev SACD and they were all excellent. Your system is the problem not the recordings." let me add good-excellent, I typed ahead and skipped a word.

I put 2 and 2 together, if Nrchy was having similar experiences to me then his question would have been different. I assumed his system was reinforcing the comments made by Mike Large to a large degree. What do you think now?
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But i do see you tootin yer own horn about how yer right and everyone is backing off, which i dont really see that either champ. To tell the truth, you went off the deep end here thinking that everyone is saying all recordings are crap, i cannot find a single instance where that happens.

MMmmm, we have a semantic issue as you can see now.

for example;

So you are saying that all the recordings are superb and nobody should doubt thier quality, it is just Nrchy's crappy mismatched system?

brilliant deduction. yes my rose colores glasses makes this possible.
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"Looking at this thread it looks more of a discussion about the level of desire in modern recording companys to produce high quality recordings, which i think most people would agree that not all recording agencys put quality of recordings as thier top priority"

My point whether it is an industry priority or not is that recordings have been quite good overall...has your experience differred?
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Metralla,

Stepping up to make my point;

"Are you referring to the two Gergiev SACDs with the Kirov Orchestra on Philips? Sheherazade and the Shostakovich? The former is pretty dire and the latter substandard. Just trying to get a reference point."

The Sheherazade recording is not dire as I would come discover, but if your system isn't right it will be a mess.

But at this point Slappy it was much more important for you to talk about me then the topic. As you may want to check.
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And Since im wrong, and obviously backing off, why dont you go ahead and pull out some quotes off this thread from us shouting out all loud and clear that all recordings are pathetic, just one more little boot in our butts as we go scampering away from your brilliant logic and insight :)

I hope that was satisfactory, in addition when you say Sony doesn't care, that's like half the recording industry just so we understand magnitudes of statements.

"know there are labels that are sympathetic to our obsessions, but does Sony/Columbia, Mercury, or RCA etc. give a rats #$%&@ about what we want?"

No shizzle my nizzle sherlock, but they do care about the quality of their recordings, its the product they make. I can count on RCA Red Seal recordings being very good to outstanding. etc.
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Just so Its complete;

Real World Studios/ Peter Gabriel/ Mike Large, use ATC loudspeakers, every bit as good as any audiophile speaker.
Neither point,has anything to do with me being a dealer.

Lets not forget, JBL, Westlake, Genelec and Meyersound etc, all of which make speaker that any music lover would be proud to own.
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Audiophile anecdote;

In the last month I have visited two audiophiles who for the last 6 months have listened to broken speakers. One refused to recognize this and listens blissfully? today, well I understand he's shopping for new speakers.

The other well we'll see how long it takes to get fixed. But what is interesting is their comments about how one recording is awful and another etc. When if fact the only thing the recordings are guilty of is exposing the "dire" problems in their speakers. Both of these individuals have systems in excess of $60,000. Funny thing but i'm not willing to assume that your system is setup right because one is an audiophile.

Always somwhere else to put the blame it seems, or the magic cable will come to the audiophiles rescue again.
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Moot, not mute....thanks Pbb

No victory to be had when I can't get my point across, which was that as audiophiles we have a responsibility to have our house in order and as you can see in my anecdote above this is something that often is overlooked. The audiophile system is not above reproach and since we have control over it we should make sure its perfect within its perfect environment.

Does anyone disagree?
Just because you don't like Cinematic Systems style, don't make the mistake of dismissing his message. Based upon the astonishing number of posts where people are looking to warm up the sound of their systems with, take you pick - tubes, interconnects, power cords, cables, tweaks, etc., I'd say it is fairly common for audiophiles to assemble systems that make significant portions of their music collection sound bad.

I agree with Nrchy that the music industry isn't concerned with audiophile values, but I disagree that it's the fault of the recording engineers. As audiophiles we may not like some of the artistic decisions made in the recording process, but from a technical point of view most major label recordings are well made. As an analogy consider any of the latest big budget Hollywood movies. They may be piss poor films, but the production values (lighting, sound, costumes, sfx, cinematography, set design, etc.) are all first rate. Every recording engineer I've ever met strives for good sound quality. To achieve that within budget and time constraints while dealing with a group of insecure temperamental artists is not little feat.
The point remains that one does not have to have a great system to hear that something is amiss in many of the recordings being sold today. I say this not to make the point, but to reinforce it; why are there so many people remastering, or selling 'audiophile' recordings if this is not true.

Maybe it's not worth arguing this point as cinematic and others seem to think that everything is fine.

If no one is holding the manufacturers, and engineers, responsible there is really no reason for them to offer anything more than what they are offering today.
Nrchy: It seems to me you've just stated the obvious. So what's your point? Audiophiles cannot "hold the manufacturers and engineers responsible" because they're too small in number to matter in the marketplace.

On the other hand, as you note, there are a number of small companies willing to cater to audiophiles by taking better care in recording and production. If you value that enough to pay the price premium, then what's the problem?
Nrchy I don't like the tone in a few of the posts directed at you and interesting as they are they are heading a bit off topic.

I buy a lot of new music and whilst never claimining Audiophile ears I do find the vast majority to sound at least fine and a lot of them good.
Of course there are exceptions-if you take the new U2 album which I will review on Lugs soon-it sounds decent on headphones and on my iPod speakers-put it on my main system and it's pretty horrific.
However I believe that is their intention to make sure the "sound" hits the mass market-I say it in my review U2 didn't get to be one of the biggest bands in the world by worrying about niche markets.

It's a shame because I believe there is no need for this approach but I don't find it that common.
Nrchy,

What more do you want? This is important, be specific.

Pin it down, what are they doing wrong?

What is missing in todays recordings for you, not global but local, your turn to answer my question.

They are trying to give us surround sound which is a huge deal, they have upped the bits, equipment in the studio is improving at huge rate even though exploited talent seems to be in abit of decline but that will change.

The only recordings that seem hard to take are the primed for top 40 group. This has always been the case.

If there a is a consistent problem one recording to another the only constant is your system. I have been through this process/ phase of bad mouthing recording engineers and proaudio "never enough highs dude" etc. I was wrong and so was my system.

Not every recording will be perfect, no matter who its made for. Its the way life is. The new Dido CD is great filled with layers of sound natural sounding instruments...what more could i ask for other than to have had them master it in my room to my tastes? Evanescense, owweee!, very hot recording.

Sorry I wasn't more succinct but this is where I was trying to go. So let's forget how we got here, and discuss what needs to be changed, what are recordings lacking specifically on a consistent basis in your opinion.
Hi Ben, you mention that you believe that there is intention to make sure the sound hits the mass market. My question would be, if the mass market doesn't know good from bad, why not make it good? (I am not agreeing with or disagreeing with one side of this or the other, simply asking a question.)
I think the point is Brian it's made to sound "powerful" on small speakers and the like-not sure exactly how that works but there is much talk of compression on here.

A good system when it seperates the sound makes it sound horribly mixed,muddy with the drums particularly affected.

I might be wrong but it's how I hear this album when I put it on my main system-it falls apart in a lot of places.

I think they did it for radio to be honest and I agree you should be able to hit both targets.
This album is as bad an example as I can find though the last Jayhawks record actually clipped out in places.
Ben Campbell's comments about the latest U2 release is an excellent example of what I meant when I said audiophile may not agree with the artistic choices made during the recording process. Believe it or not, it takes real skill to make that recording sound as loud and as big sounding as it is.
I gotcha Ben, no doubt some (maybe a lot) music is compressed.