Source Material Thoughts

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Chas_T, Jul 18, 2002.

  1. Chas_T

    Chas_T Supporting Actor

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    I recently upgraded my CD player to a Sony C555ES and have begun to purchase cd's again. I took a bit of break from it for a while and some observations and thoughts on some recent purcahses.

    What I am finding is that there is a vast difference in sound quality of every disc that I am purchasing with SACD and Redbook.

    For example: Redbook's that I recently purchased:

    U2- The Best of 1980-1990
    The Who - Ultimate Collection
    Pink Floyd - Echoes
    Pink Floyd - Ummagumma
    Yes- Relayer

    Now, these discs are supposed to be digitally re-mastered. I played them a few times to find out if I had cotton in my ears. To be frank, they sound like total crap. Highs, mid and soundstage are terrible.

    However, I purchased a Miles Davis redbook, "Kind of Blue". This pressing (still appropriate term??) is wonderful. Remastered like the rest, but it's like taking earmuffs away compared to the other's I mentioned.

    In the SACD area, I find I have the same experience. For example, a Celine Dion SACD sometimes crackles at specific points. A Journey SACD has the same characteristics.

    Yet, a Blood Sweat and Tears, Yo-Yo Ma, Isaac Stern SACD sound totaly awesome. AWESOME..

    I am using the following equipment for 2 channel in my computer room. Paradigm Studio 40's, Earthquake MK12 sub, Parasound P/HP850, Aragon 8002 and of course the Sony player.

    I guess my question is, do you find such huge differences in source material that you just want to return the product and tell them that their product sounds like total crap?

    Or, am I missing the boat here?

    Cheers,
    Charles
     
  2. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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    Yes.

    About 1 in 7 of my CDs I would consider a good recording, 1 in 20 are very good. Kind of disappointing really when you've been really looking forward to a release or found a rare gem and it sounds like crap.
     
  3. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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  4. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Lee,
    Come on! Give us some information we can use! [​IMG] Seriously though, that's a great list. Well done.
    All,
    The majority of pop and rock recordings are lousy in my opinion. The better the equipment, the easier it is to identify flawed recordings. You get the good and the bad with revealing gear. Quality equipment brings out all the details, and fortunately or unfortunately, there is no filter than can leave out the bad. The equipment doesn't know the difference. Everything comes through. [​IMG]
    Charles,
    I suspect the 'C555ES is far more revealing a CD player than anything you have used. As a result, you may be realizing for the first time that many recordings are really poor. I go through it every day with my CD collection.
     
  5. Dan Joy

    Dan Joy Supporting Actor

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    Chas, I feel very similar. It seems that I find myself sometimes listening to good to great recordings even though I don't care for that particular artist. Now granted I do not have the level of equipment that you have but I have made a considerable jump from entry level to mid. There are many cd's that I can't tolerate (old Tom Petty, Springsteen, etc). In fact I cant tolerate any MP3's anymore after my equipment upgrade. I am exploring the multichannel world but am still not convinced that I should spend yhat much money on either SACD or DVD-A due to the small variety of content and the constant thumbs up or down reviews for each title. I am leaning SACD to go with my DA5ES and other Sony equipment(Sony seems to work well with each other)
    When I want to see a movie I can rent a DVD. If I don't like it I don't buy it. Once you buy your cd's, your stuck with a monetary loss if you don't like it.
    But all in all these are not bad problems to have and this forum continues to educate me. Any how, I am rambling and concur with your thoughts.[​IMG]
     
  6. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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    Tom Petty!

    Full moon junction is an incredible recording.

    Thanks for the list Lee, my tastes are all over the map but I'm not much into classical and prefer rock, techno, jazz, R&B.

    Most disappointing of all was Tool's newest album. I can't even listen to it its so badly recorded. Love the songs though.
     
  7. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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  8. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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    Is there any place that gives any kind of rating for CDs or other recordings?

    And just why do they sound bad? Is it the recording engineer having a bad do or being inept? Do these guys actually sit in a studio and say "yeah, that's real nice".

    Take eminem's new album (I know, I know). There are a few track where Dr. Dre is the mixer/engineer and you can for sure tell. Some of his earlier recordings are awesome.
     
  9. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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  10. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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  11. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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  12. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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  13. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Lee, keep working on Hobson with regards to Zeppeling SACDs. Please? I keep hearing great things about those Zeppelin LPs. I have been holding off on getting them since I still have the $200 Sony manual turntable (PS-LX350H, current model). I've thought about waiting to expand my LP collection until I upgrade to the Music Hall MMF-5, and I don't know when I will do that. However, I don't know how long I hold off on those Zeppelin LPs. Stop talking about them! [​IMG]
     
  14. Frank_S

    Frank_S Supporting Actor

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  15. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Frank, you may be right, but I am in the midst of planning a wedding, so I am trying to lay low on the audio/home-theater side of things right now. I will feel better once I know how much the wedding will cost. Then, I can go nuts with componentry again. [​IMG] Even though I am laying low right now, I will probably end up buying a new home-theater receiver soon since my current one is in the shop and probably cannot be fixed.
    I'm with you. I can't imagine that Lee would not have a vinyl rig. Something's amiss. [​IMG]
     
  16. Lee Scoggins

    Lee Scoggins Producer

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  17. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Lee, the Rega Planar 2 is on my short list, but the MMF-5 is an excellent value since a Goldring cartridge -- a good one at that -- is included for $500 or less. The VPI Scout looks like a great table, but I'm not going to spend nearly that much.
    You said:
     
  18. Chas_T

    Chas_T Supporting Actor

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    Gentleman,
    Thank you all for the feedback and the informative personal experiences.
    John: My experience would be the same, maybe even higher. Must be picking the wrong discs.
    Dan: "Once you buy your cd's, your stuck with a monetary loss if you don't like it." Agreed with your statement. I have far to many CD's that I don't even play due to the terrible reproduction. They are great though for throwing at the local cats as they try to wipe out the bird/rabbit population. [​IMG]
    Lee: What a list you have there. I guess I'll just have some research to complete in the next few weeks and try to find some of these you mention. TY..
    Keith: You are correct about the revealing nature of the 555ES. Honestly, I'd lost touch with CD playback. I was very tired of getting bad recordings and also playing them back on my all in one Sony DVD C650D player. I always felt something was lacking with playback on CD's. I just lost interest in in CD's.
    When it came to music listening, I would just tune into Directv music channels for the jazz, classical, new age and enjoyed that a hell lot more then my extensive CD collection.
    Now that the C555ES is in my home, it's prompted me to renew with vigor more CD/SACD listening, which in one way is a good thing. At another level, my bank account seems to draining these past few weeks.
    It was an interesting day on the audio front. I went to the local high end shop to look for some new cables to connnect the 555ES and Aragon 8002 to my Parsound Preamp. Wound up dropping a few dollars on 3 sets of Kimber PBJ interconnects. Major difference right out of the chute. It was money well spent.
    Also, took the time to listen to some high end Martin Logan's powered by some tube amps. Gezzzzzz.. The guy quoted me a price for the entire 2 channel system with cables, 18 inch Rel, pre/pro and cables of $50K. I told him I'd take a dozen and was going to send them to everyone who posted to my thread. [​IMG]
    Also, due to the comments on vinyl here, I went into the attic to dig out an old turntable that was sitting around since Adam and Eve met. I bought this Harmon/Kardon Rabco ST-7 straight line system with an Ortofon cartridge probably in 1976. Plugged the puppy in. The table is dead. Maybe I can fix the darn thing, but my best guess is the motor is shot and by the time I track one down to replace it, I could probably purchase a new table. Lots of vinyl in my closet.
    Anyway, thanks to ALL for the comments on the hit and miss recordings in most music today. I really thought I was losing my mind that these CD's sounded like crap. In the future, I shall attempt to be more selective in my purchases for the future.
    However, I must admit, I did stop at Best Buy today and purchased a few Diana Krell CD's. Oh baby.. [​IMG]
     
  19. John Royster

    John Royster Screenwriter

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    Chas,

    A little off topic but given your ear on recordings I'd trust your judgement and possibly you can give some vindication to electrostats.

    How did that logan/tube setup sound? I'm looking for a good amp for some reQuests and the idea of bi-amping the panel/woofer with a tube/solid state intrigues me.

    thanks.
     
  20. KeithH

    KeithH Lead Actor

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    Charles said:
     

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