Compression techniques ruining modern music (article)

Eric_Connelly

Second Unit
Joined
Nov 25, 1999
Messages
460
Well here is my comparison.

I loaded up Black Hole Sun from Peter Frampton's new album. This is accoustic and a "quiet" version of the song. Also was Blue Guitar from the Cowboy Junkies, also a very quiet song. Lastly was Prince's Nothing Compares to you.

Peter Frampton's album was most evident. I listened to Price's CD yesterday at a level where it sounded good, flowed through out the entire house. I put in Fingerprints at the exact same level and it was way way louder. I turn down the volume and the song disappears.

I did these copies in the image on my laptop through the crappy speakers Prince sounded OK, I muted it and played Black Hole Sun and it was pure static overdriving the speakers.

Here it is, Cowboy Junkies first, Peter Frampton second, and Price third:



What do you all think?
 

LanceJ

Senior HTF Member
Joined
Oct 26, 2002
Messages
3,168
The first waveform seems fine.

The 2nd one is nasty!

The 3rd isn't all that good either & while its *overall* volume level is lower than the 2nd waveform, it still has lots of chopped tops.........just like the 2nd waveform - IIRC that is what is called "hard limiting" which adds an unnatural quality to the music.

A CD with an overall/average louder volume level is fine with me (this also uses more of a sample word's bits i.e. improved resolution) but an album with no dynamic range like the Blackhole Sun CD is NOT.
 

Eric_Connelly

Second Unit
Joined
Nov 25, 1999
Messages
460
The third one is tough because listening to the Prince CD's they do not sound overblown.

I tried to find something that was quiet and that song is quiet at the start and does get louder. Its also a live recording.

I might pull a couple others off of the CD.

How does the bass side of things effect it? The music has quite a bit of bass in some songs for the given volume level but it doesn't drown anything else out.

Its far more listenable than the other two.

The Framptom album really disappoints me because there are so many tracks where a moderate listening level would be very enjoyable but instead you have to turn it up and just a slight turn of the knob makes it very loud.
 

Brian Little

Stunt Coordinator
Joined
Sep 3, 2005
Messages
216


This is taken from "Love On The Air" by David Gilmour from his 1984 album "About Face." The top one is from the 1984 original CBS/Columbia Records release that was mastered by Joe Gastwirt at Digital Magnetics. The bottom one is from the 2006 EMI release mastered by James Guthree with Joel Plante at Das Boot Recording.

The new remasters sounds great. Nicer detail with still a good amount of dynamic range in the mix.
 

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