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Customer Discussions > Classical Music forum

Remasters -- Help me out!


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Showing 1-17 of 17 posts in this discussion
Initial post: May 1, 2012 3:32:18 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 1, 2012 3:34:12 PM PDT
KenOC says:
Confused by remasters. When do they make a difference? If the original digital file has a certain resolution, how can there be any way to increase the resolution simply by running it through a machine with more bits or whatever? I ask this because I've heard plenty of remasters that were not audible improvements.

I can certainly see remasters from analog -- Sony's remasters of Walter's Beethoven symphonies did wonders for recordings that were already pretty good. Or from some early digital, where recordings were often bright or shrill. But am I wrong in suspecting that remasters are often just marketing ploys to sell some new copies?

Posted on May 1, 2012 4:07:17 PM PDT
[Deleted by the author on May 1, 2012 4:11:31 PM PDT]

Posted on May 1, 2012 4:23:22 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 1, 2012 4:26:10 PM PDT
Skaynan says:
Ken: why don't you check out waves.com? They make the world's best plugins and hardware for mastering (the mastering utilities are mainly "limiters", but there are also linear phase equalizers and compressors that are designed to be on the mastering "chain" there). You will find a lot of technical data and explanations there.

Posted on May 1, 2012 4:26:26 PM PDT
R. Schroeder says:
Well, not in the world of classical music, but I was just discussing the recent pink floyd remasters with a friend of mine. I have listened to some of those, and they sound identical to the old ones to me. I even did ABX comparisons and could not tell the difference.

I have not been listening to classical music long enough to buy the same recordings again just because its a new edition.

Posted on May 1, 2012 5:48:58 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 1, 2012 7:04:39 PM PDT
Larkenfield says:
I like remastered recordings only if there is a noticible improvement of sound according to my ability to judge the sample clips, if available, especially through a headset. I'm on the conservative side, because the record companies know that remasters can be profitable and some buyers will jump on them. But some companies do consistently better remasters than others, with Sony being my favorite and EMI being my least favorite. One is required to be an astute buyer to know if the expense is worth it. In my own experience, I've found that it usually is for my favorite performances, historic recordings, or desert island discs.

Posted on May 1, 2012 5:50:55 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 15, 2012 4:19:21 PM PDT]

Posted on May 1, 2012 7:04:33 PM PDT
Gwac says:
I recently realized that the version of grumiaux's solo bach that i bought a year ago (the duo release) was not the most recent remastering (the 'originals' series). Comparing the sound clips i was surprised to find that the difference was audible, but that i couldn't decide which one i preferred.

In reply to an earlier post on May 1, 2012 7:05:58 PM PDT
KenOC says:
March, a 2,000 to 1 price differential!

Posted on May 1, 2012 7:18:16 PM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 22, 2012 9:03:16 AM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on May 1, 2012 7:47:43 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 1, 2012 7:49:35 PM PDT
Edgar Self says:
Isn't there anything in Wiki about this, Ken? I've never known you stumped before.

In reply to an earlier post on May 1, 2012 8:07:36 PM PDT
"I've heard plenty of remasters that were not audible improvements."

Aha!!!, KenOC, I'll bet that your audio system doesn't include the cryogenically treated 1 guage speaker cables with 100% oxygen free copper. Give them time to break-in before passing judgement and certainly have them blessed by a circumcised Orthodox Wiccan priest. Okay, just joking about the wire size. Most speaker terminals only allow 10-12 guage wire.

In reply to an earlier post on May 1, 2012 8:15:10 PM PDT
march,
The latter album cover reveals a much more vibrant red in Uchida's shirt color. Is it worth the added cost?

In reply to an earlier post on May 1, 2012 8:19:43 PM PDT
KenOC says:
UtI, I think I've mentioned a friend who is a committed audiophile. He believes that tying half-hitch knots in his power cords improves the sound quality. It makes a difference whether they are right-to-left or left-to-right, but I can't remember clearly. Maybe that's my trouble!

In reply to an earlier post on May 1, 2012 8:20:35 PM PDT
"Comparing the sound clips i was surprised to find that the difference was audible, but that i couldn't decide which one i preferred."

Gwac,
Love that statement. That observation is smack dab on the target in my book. It sounds different, but better? Too me, that is one of the biggest condrums that audio science struggles to address.

In reply to an earlier post on May 1, 2012 8:22:26 PM PDT
;)

That's what you get for living in California. Now go do some yoga and tofu.

Posted on May 1, 2012 8:41:37 PM PDT
Edgar Self says:
Mitsuko Uchida flaunts the most brilliant silk pyjamas to be seen on any concert stage, and the most excruciating eyebrow music. She also plays the piano. But, oh, those P.J.s!

Posted on May 1, 2012 8:59:31 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 1, 2012 9:11:58 PM PDT
Doubtless we all have CDs remastered from analog session tapes mono or stereo---and the CD sound is spectacularly better than the sound on the LPs we had of those same performances.

Barbirolli's stereo EMI/Philharmonia Elgar One and Two sounded muffled and gauzy on seraphim LPs but bright and clear on EMI CDs. And his PYE/Halle series sounded awful on Vanguard Everyman LPs but astonishingly good on EMI and Dutton CDs (the PYE Halle sessions were run by Wilma Cozart, Harold Fine, and Robert Lawrence!)

So there are some remasterings that are light-years ahead of whatever we had first---particularly so if what we had first was the LP issue. I realize that not everyone will agree with this.

The 1999 Toscanini RCA/BMG remasterings ("Toscanini the Immortal" series of two-CD sets, maybe 24 CDs in all) are substantially better than the 1991 remasterings of the same material in the Toscanini Edition. This is a good example of second-generation-CD- later-is-better in action.

I am something of a pushover when it comes to buying the latest remastering of a recording I already like and already have two previous remasterings of.

I've noticed that some of the EMI box reissues (e.g. some of the Icon boxes) are certainly reissues but not necessarily remasterings. I was looking at one of them the other day (can't recall which) that was issued in 2010 or 2011---but consisted of previously-issued 1991 remasterings from session tapes. EMI didn't re-remaster. All it did was rebox and reissue.

I'm not complaining. Sort of.
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Discussion in:  Classical Music forum
Participants:  11
Total posts:  17
Initial post:  May 1, 2012
Latest post:  May 1, 2012

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