Top 10 Albums for Sound Quality - In discussion - Page 6 - AVS | Home Theater Discussions And Reviews
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post #151 of 174 Old 08-09-2014, 05:17 PM
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Leonard Cohen - Old Ideas


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post #152 of 174 Old 08-14-2014, 01:59 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jephdood View Post
Seeing this list and some of the comments here.. maybe I'm losing my mind, but I don't think so...

Adele/21 is great music, but the album, IMO, was ruined in production. Like most recordings today, it's plagued by over-mixing to boost loudness, essentially killing most of the dynamics. It sounds like crap compared to what it should have been.

Adele's voice is fantastic. But 21 isn't even CLOSE to a great sounding recording.
I agree 100%. The music and singing are great, but the sound quality of the CD is crap. Very flat with no dynamics. Disappointing.
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post #153 of 174 Old 12-12-2014, 04:42 PM
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Adele vs. Carmen Gomes

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Originally Posted by UCrazyKid View Post
I agree 100%. The music and singing are great, but the sound quality of the CD is crap. Very flat with no dynamics. Disappointing.
Quote:
Originally Posted by jephdood View Post
Seeing this list and some of the comments here.. maybe I'm losing my mind, but I don't think so...

Adele/21 is great music, but the album, IMO, was ruined in production. Like most recordings today, it's plagued by over-mixing to boost loudness, essentially killing most of the dynamics. It sounds like crap compared to what it should have been.

Adele's voice is fantastic. But 21 isn't even CLOSE to a great sounding recording.
Yes that is a lot of compression;

Adele ''21''
DRdata base score;min. 5, max. 8.

Compared to i.e. one of my favorites; Carmen Gomes ''Thousand Shades of Blue''
DRdata base score; min. 12, max. 15.

That is almost 2 times as much dynamic range and Carmen Gomes, on that album, is singing softer than Adele.


But of course it is also too completely different production methods;
Carmen Gomes
Quote:
The 12 pieces of music were performed live in the studio in front of a studio audience. The musicians were placed in front of a stereo pair of microphones with additional spot microphones on each instrument. The musicians were playing without headphones, the reason being that we believe that when we get the musicians to play together in the same room,with out headphones, it creates a number of musical and technical benefits:

As they are not ''separated'' by the headphones, the musicians, in order to hear each other are forced to create a natural and musical balance, a balance which is then easily captured by the main stereo pair of microphones. Because of the natural and musical balance the need for compression to control levels is no longer necessary, and since everybody is in the same room,the boxed sound which is so common in many modern recordings is absent, and the sound of the room helps ''glue'' the sound of the recording.

This is all very well but there are also problematic aspects to this procedure:

The room, studio, has to have a good sound. The musicians have to be very good and well prepared as it is very difficult to repair mistakes because of the ''cross talk'' between the instruments, we have to be very precise when choosing and placing the microphones and the puzzle of placing the musicians at the right distance to the main stereo microphones and the right distance to each other, is also time consuming. And when we have a live audience in the studio, we pray that they remember to turn of their cell phones and the ones with a bad cold choose to stay at home. The room where the recordings has been done is the now legendary Studio Eleven situated in the the building of the Dutch World Broad Casting Service. The Studio was used extensively in the 60's by European and visiting American jazz musicians (Wes Montgomery, Cannonball Adderley,Dexter Gordon,Eric Dolphy.....) The Dutch World Broad Casting Service asked Frans de Rond to bring the room back to life as a recording studio, and Frans after seeing and hearing the room jumped at the opportunity. Sound Liaison has been allowed to use the room for our audiophile projects and we are eternally grateful to the Dutch World Service for the opportunity.

Recorded in Studio Eleven (Hilversum) with a live audience on September 15, 2012.
This recording was made by Sound Liaison for and with lovers of high-end audio recordings.
The file is a one to one copy of the master file (96kHz/24bit).
source;http://www.soundliaison.com/

Adele 21;
Quote:
Vocals: Waves Q6 & De‑esser, Digirack EQIII, Lo‑Fi & Trim, Pultec EQ, Urei 1176, Tube‑Tech CL1B, various spring reverbs and delays.The Lo‑Fi plug‑in got another outing on the backing vocals, where some tonal shaping was applied with EQIII.
The Lo‑Fi plug‑in got another outing on the backing vocals, where some tonal shaping was applied with EQIII.
Tom Elmhirst: Recording Adele 'Rolling In The Deep'

"I had the Q6 on the chorus vocal, notching out 930, 1634 and 3175 Hz very, very heavily: ‑18dB, ‑18dB and ‑12.1dB respectively, with very narrow Q. I also had the EQIII on the lead‑vocal sub, notching something out again. Something obviously needed to be taken out. The vocal is the most important thing in the track, and taking those frequencies out allowed me to keep it up front in the mix, particularly in the chorus. You can never account for what mic the vocals were recorded on, and whatever it is that bugs me, I can take it out. 'T' on the lead vocal bus is the [Massey] Tapehead plug‑in, which wasn't used, but I did use two Waves De‑essers, one taking out at 5449Hz and the other at 11004Hz. Rather than use one to try to cover all the sibilance I used two. I do that quite often.

Tom Elmhirst always creates stem mixes, and in the case of 'Rolling In The Deep', these were recalled and augmented with extra sub‑bass and vocal parts for the release version.
Tom Elmhirst always creates stem mixes, and in the case of 'Rolling In The Deep', these were recalled and augmented with extra sub‑bass and vocal parts for the release version.
"Regarding the outboard, I had the Pultec EQ, Urei 1176 and the Tube‑Tech CL1B on the lead vocal sub insert (desk channel 25). The Pultec boosted around 100Hz and 12k. It's colourful, but not drastic. There was not a lot of gain. The blackface Urei had fast attack and fast release, whereas the Tube‑Tech had slow attack and slow release, it was more evening out the level. You can use compression as an effect, but on the vocal you mainly want control. You want to set it up right so you're not constantly moving the channel fader to fit the vocal in the mix. If you're constantly moving the fader, rather than just doing the occasional ride, you know that you need to look at your compression. There's also Paul's Roland Space Echo track, which I used throughout, and which was the only lead vocal effect in the first chorus. On the backing vocals I had the Digirack Trim, again the Lo‑Fi, and the EQIII, cutting a bit around 405Hz and boosting a little around 3.17k. I used quite a few spring reverbs on the backing vocals, because I wanted them to have a lot more ambience. In the choruses I would also have added several delays. The delays make the backing vocals swing a bit, and they also fill up the space and make sure that they fit in the mix.”
source; http://www.soundonsound.com/sos/sep1...es/it-0911.htm
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post #154 of 174 Old 12-13-2014, 05:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thelastjuju View Post
Here's my top 10 that I like to show off my system with, to people who are hearing a quality 2.1 studio monitor setup for the first time.. a very wide variety:

Pink Floyd's "Dark Side of the Moon" (Progressive Rock) [Japanese Black Triangle Stereo version]
Beethoven's 9th (Classical Symphony) [Berlin Philharmonic / Karajan]
Mozart's Requiem (Classical Choral) [BBC Symphony Orchestra]

(the main 3)


Radiohead's "OK Computer" (Alternative Rock, Art Rock)
Beatle's "Revolver" (Psychedelic Pop, Pop Rock)
Miles Davis' "Kind of Blue" (Modal / Cool Jazz)
Talking Head's "Remain in Light" (New Wave, Art Punk)
Sigur Ros' "
I Never thought of Revolver as an album to show off one's system. DSOTM, yes.
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post #155 of 174 Old 12-14-2014, 02:43 PM
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I'm loving The Alan Parsons Project- Eye in the Sky at the moment.

Silence and I sounds fantastic on my system.
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post #156 of 174 Old 12-17-2014, 02:16 AM
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Stevie Ray Vaughn, Couldnt Stand The Wheather

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post #157 of 174 Old 12-17-2014, 06:50 PM
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Stevie Ray Vaughn, Couldnt Stand The Wheather
SRV into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame!

Finally,'bout time.
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post #158 of 174 Old 12-18-2014, 01:47 AM
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SRV should have been inducted while he was alive.

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post #159 of 174 Old 12-18-2014, 01:38 PM
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Where to start! Here's what I've been using recently.

Dire Straits & Mark Knopfler - Private Investigations: If you're listening to the SACD of Brother's in Arms that's fine. If you don't do SACD don't waste your time on other cds and get Private Investigations; it's a superior sounding album

NIN - Broken; Ghosts; The Downward Spiral (Vinyl/SACD): Broken will fool you into thinking it could be lo-fi, but if you have a very good system you'll realize it's got bizarre and intentionality to it that make it something very off the wall to test a system with. Ghosts is crazy, it was intended as an imaging concept album and it heavily reflects this from an audiophile POV.

Lorde - Pure Heroin: Top 40, but it has some fantastic bass and highs that'll give your tweeter a workout! There's a song that can really show you how well a voice pans to see if your center voice is as good as panned.

Trentmoller - The Last Restort: What a gem! Too bad the only people that gave it the time of day were clubbers that can't hear 90% of the music. Essentially in a club you hear the bass lines and there's 10k's remixes, but the real beauty is on a hifi system where you experience a totally non-traditional use of instruments. You won't really recognize the instruments, but they were used to make the different sounds.

Female vocals... I like a few things Norah Jones - Feels Like Home; Holly Brook - Like Blood Like Honey; Alison Kraus on Raising Sand
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post #160 of 174 Old 12-19-2014, 03:36 PM
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All excellent suggestions guys!
Add;


Jamie Cullum -twentysomething CD/SACD (Verve) 2004 - this is my reference disc!
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post #161 of 174 Old 12-19-2014, 04:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by obagley View Post
I'm loving The Alan Parsons Project- Eye in the Sky at the moment.

Silence and I sounds fantastic on my system.
If you're enjoying that, give Alan Parsons "Turn of a friendly Card" a listen


Alan
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post #162 of 174 Old 12-19-2014, 09:20 PM
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Originally Posted by Cruzin View Post
If you're enjoying that, give Alan Parsons "Turn of a friendly Card" a listen
Then go to I Robot. Their tour de force IMHO. Sure wish Alan Parsons would release this as a BDA 5.1 mix.
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post #163 of 174 Old 12-19-2014, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by DocCasualty View Post
Then go to I Robot. Their tour de force IMHO. Sure wish Alan Parsons would release this as a BDA 5.1 mix.
I love all the alan parsons albums. I have everyone on vinyl. There all good.
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post #164 of 174 Old 12-21-2014, 08:15 PM
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A new CD that I just bought that I think sounds incredible is Jarrod Spector: A Little Help From My Friends
It was recorded live at one of his concerts and his voice is insane!
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post #165 of 174 Old 02-24-2015, 07:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cruzin View Post
If you're enjoying that, give Alan Parsons "Turn of a friendly Card" a listen


Alan
I was living in the UK when the album came out, and I was lucky enough to get a special pressing of it at the time. It was awesome... I wish i still had the vinyl version.

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post #166 of 174 Old 02-26-2015, 05:32 AM
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Hi all,

Just signed up to this forum so I could mention Rhythm and Stealth by Leftfield.

If you don't know this album then your system is missing out on a great workout.

Every improvement in my system has revealed more magic on this CD whilst others I had considered to be great recordings just sound much the same.
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post #167 of 174 Old 03-06-2015, 12:20 AM
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One of my go to recordings that I don't think I've seen mentioned in that context is Chris Cornell Unplugged in Sweden. The vocals are very forward, too much so I would guess some would say. But a voice like his really highlights differences in setup and gear as well as any other I've found.

Cheers
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post #168 of 174 Old 03-06-2015, 01:07 PM
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One relatively recent album (2012) which I took note of for it's particularly good sound quality is 'Devotion' by Jessie Ware. Most of the albums I own are in FLAC format so for this one, which I own in an inferior lossy format (320kbps MP3), to stand out is exceptional. I think I will probably buy the FLAC or Vinyl version sometime.



Also, I have to say that the sound quality of '1989' by Taylor Swift (2014) (FLAC) is excellent, (whatever you might think of the musical style).

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post #169 of 174 Old 03-19-2015, 10:49 AM
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Superb Sound!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mgproudfit View Post
That said, here are OUR recommendations!!

1: Yo-Yo Ma Plays Ennio Morricone - SACD - Link to View

Outstanding CD with simply amazing imaging, sound quality, and talented musicians. Shut your eyes with a good system, and the walls of your house fall away and you find yourself sitting in a concert hall with Yo-Yo Ma and an accompanying orchestra. Beautiful album, and a must-own.

2: Adele: 21 - CD - Link to View

"While relatively new to the music world in the scheme of things, this girl has a stunning voice. She is not your prototypical 21st century vocalist, seeing as she can actually sing without multiple computer aided supplements. For a pure voice that has a wide vocal range and a sultry voice, look no further." (Thanks, mgproudfit)

"I agree with Adele's album that you've mentioned; it's a great sounding disc. The sound quality is great but the album's substance is even better...The level of talent that she demonstrates is far beyond what the other women were showing." (Thanks, StinkPiece)




Keep 'em coming!
Allready have those two albums.
Agree with you, specially No. 1. That SACD can make you feel a whole new experience in music. I think that Ennio Morricone was blessed and gifted in compossing music.
Keep posting more great music!

Last edited by aracGuate; 03-20-2015 at 09:51 PM.
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post #170 of 174 Old 03-21-2015, 01:15 AM
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I feel like a fish out of water. When I adjust the settings on my stereo I don't use any of the mentioned stuff. I go to the European Mobile Media Association SQ CD (the latest one, they come out with new ones every year). I wonder, why the SACD format? The only audible advantage is more than 2 channels.
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post #171 of 174 Old 03-23-2015, 05:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anodynic View Post
One of my go to recordings that I don't think I've seen mentioned in that context is Chris Cornell Unplugged in Sweden. The vocals are very forward, too much so I would guess some would say. But a voice like his really highlights differences in setup and gear as well as any other I've found.

Cheers
This is excellent. Thanks for the heads up.
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post #172 of 174 Old 03-23-2015, 05:38 PM
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Best produced disc of the last decade, sound quality is tremendous.

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post #173 of 174 Old 03-24-2015, 10:45 PM
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That's the one, thanks for the cover art. I'm glad I wasn't the only one thinking that if only everything were recorded and mixed this well.
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post #174 of 174 Unread Today, 05:01 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Anodynic View Post
That's the one, thanks for the cover art. I'm glad I wasn't the only one thinking that if only everything were recorded and mixed this well.
Are we talking two instruments plus audience mixes? Relatively trivial level of difficulty from a mixing perspective IMO. Should sound good on any system. A busier mix combining bass, vocals, piano, brass and drum kit would raise the level of difficulty for the studio, your gear and discerning ears.
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