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Soundgarden's Down On The Upside (Vinyl)
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18th June 2010
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Soundgarden's Down On The Upside (Vinyl)

I just got a hold of Soundgarden's Down On The Upside (vinyl), been playing it for the last couple of days and man, it has to be one of the best sounding vinyl records I've ever heard. Of course, Soundgarden wrote these interesting songs with fantastic instrumentation and production, so hats off to them and producer Adam Kasper. Bass is deep and heavy, mids are clear and there is width depth and height to the sound. WOW!

Mastering credits go to Dave Collins, is he the same dcollins we have here on GS? I'm a believer! When I get to release a project on vinyl, I will know who to turn to.

Why am I so happy? the analog sound, when done right is a real joy to listen to! In comparison to other vinyls which have truly disappointed me coz of their lack of the other qualities I listed herev(Pearl Jam TEN, Temple of The Dog, Nirvana Unpliugged).
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundWeavers View Post
Mastering credits go to Dave Collins, is he the same dcollins we have here on GS?
Yes, it is.

Quote:
When I get to release a project on vinyl, I will know who to turn to.
I'm pretty sure that Dave no longer has a lathe in his own studio - but I'm sure he could do an excellent job on the pre-mastering for you.

Best regards,
Steve Berson
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18th June 2010
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yup.. i believe he mastered superunknownn as well
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wow, that's great! dcollins sir, u r da man!

Quote:
Originally Posted by CeretoneAudio View Post
yup.. i believe he mastered superunknownn as well
I'm waiting for my SuperUnknown vinyl to arrive.

These 2 records further cement Soundgarden's stature in my music book.

just so happy here, yalll know how vinyl records are hit n miss when it comes to great sound. I especially hate it when the CD sounds better than the vinyl.
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Originally Posted by SoundWeavers View Post
wow, that's great! dcollins sir, u r da man!



I'm waiting for my SuperUnknown vinyl to arrive.

These 2 records further cement Soundgarden's stature in my music book.

just so happy here, yalll know how vinyl records are hit n miss when it comes to great sound. I especially hate it when the CD sounds better than the vinyl.
get badmotorfinger as well its my favorite album of theirs
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18th June 2010
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I think it's a well known fact DC used his Multiband Gooderizer Analog emulator Plugin on this.
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18th June 2010
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Originally Posted by Ged View Post
I think it's a well known fact DC used his Multiband Gooderizer Analog emulator Plugin on this.
...and clipped it.
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Originally Posted by jayfrigo View Post
...and clipped it.
haha got me!!!
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18th June 2010
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in M/S mode
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Before I even really cared about sound, I knew that Superunknown sounded amazing. Massive respect to Dave Collins for his work on that.

It's an absolutely staggering record in every possible respect, but I've never heard it on vinyl - let us know how it is
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18th June 2010
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Slightly OT but a message to the OP. If you like the sound and music of Soundgarden's early stuff you might like to check out the eponymous album by Temple Of The Dog - featuring members of Soundgarden & Pearl Jam before either of those bands existed afaik.

The songs are great and it's one of my favourite sounding albums. Not mastered by DC but cracking nevertheless.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soundmaster Alex View Post
Slightly OT but a message to the OP. If you like the sound and music of Soundgarden's early stuff you might like to check out the eponymous album by Temple Of The Dog - featuring members of Soundgarden & Pearl Jam before either of those bands existed afaik.

The songs are great and it's one of my favourite sounding albums. Not mastered by DC but cracking nevertheless.
Yes I have TOD both in CD and vinyl, love the songs, love the CD but the vinyl version doesn't sound as good, so many songs were crammed onto 1 LP thus the loss in volume and bass weight.
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Thanks for all the kind words!

I didn't do the lacquer mastering on either one of those records, they were cut flat from my 44/16 CD master. I believe Ken Perry did the cut.


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19th June 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
Thanks for all the kind words!

I didn't do the lacquer mastering on either one of those records, they were cut flat from my 44/16 CD master. I believe Ken Perry did the cut.

DC
I appreciate your honesty on this matter.

However, your information that the vinyl record was cut from 44/16 CD master is shocking to me. I thought that the vinyl would have been cut from the analog tape masters without the digital limiting applied on the CD master. And that it's cut from the 44/16 instead of 48/24, wow. I am shocked.

But still, the record sounds really great!
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19th June 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoundWeavers View Post
I appreciate your honesty on this matter.

However, your information that the vinyl record was cut from 44/16 CD master is shocking to me. I thought that the vinyl would have been cut from the analog tape masters without the digital limiting applied on the CD master. And that it's cut from the 44/16 instead of 48/24, wow. I am shocked.

But still, the record sounds really great!
I once had a reviewer from Stereophile call and was raving, raving I tell you, about the sound of an LP done the same way: I sent my eq'd CD master and someone else cut the lacquer.

"The depth, the detail, the microdynamics are beyond compare, it's just more proof of the superiority of analog"

"But it was cut from a 16 bit digtial source."

"Impossible."

"I was at the session."

"Don't you tell me what I'm hearing!"

"Uh, I gotta get back to work......."


DC
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19th June 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
I once had a reviewer from Stereophile call and was raving, raving I tell you, about the sound of an LP done the same way: I sent my eq'd CD master and someone else cut the lacquer.

"The depth, the detail, the microdynamics are beyond compare, it's just more proof of the superiority of analog"

"But it was cut from a 16 bit digtial source."

"Impossible."

"I was at the session."

"Don't you tell me what I'm hearing!"

"Uh, I gotta get back to work......."


DC
Got to say in my time at Europadisk much more than once the DMM masters I cut would sound subjectively "better" to me doing an a/b comparison between them and the original 16bit/44.1kHz source (which was way more common for me to receive than hi-res digital - and no one ever asked for an all-analog cut even though we had a preview deck capable of doing one) that they were cut "flat" from.

I'd say first because there really isn't a true "flat" cut in most cases - we had the VAB-84 vertical amplitude limiter and BSB-74 acceleration limiter in the signal path at all times (even though these would get set at high thresholds just to enable protection of the cutter head / stylus if the intention was to cut "flat" as possible) - and sometimes EE's, HPF's, LPF's, de-essers and possibly small "corrective" eq or even a tiny bit of compression to make the transferred program on playback be easier to track and sound less distorted at what would other wise be problematic points.

Next with the vinyl format on playback you get the coloration of the stylus/cartridge/pre-amp being used, along with some nice helpings of crosstalk/rumble/wow/flutter/tracing distortion/surface noise.

End result is there are some definite changes from the source it is cut from - and these can be perceived as "better" by some even though they are a distortion from the original.
So - the Stereophile reviewer was actually liking the fact that what they were hearing was actually lower fidelity to the original source.

Best regards,
Steve Berson
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19th June 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cellotron View Post
Got to say in my time at Europadisk much more than once the DMM masters I cut would sound subjectively "better" to me doing an a/b comparison between them and the original 16bit/44.1kHz source (which was way more common for me to receive than hi-res digital - and no one ever asked for an all-analog cut even though we had a preview deck capable of doing one) that they were cut "flat" from.

I'd say first because there really isn't a true "flat" cut in most cases - we had the VAB-84 vertical amplitude limiter and BSB-74 acceleration limiter in the signal path at all times (even though these would get set at high thresholds just to enable protection of the cutter head / stylus if the intention was to cut "flat" as possible) - and sometimes EE's, HPF's, LPF's, de-essers and possibly small "corrective" eq or even a tiny bit of compression to make the transferred program on playback be easier to track and sound less distorted at what would other wise be problematic points.

Next with the vinyl format on playback you get the coloration of the stylus/cartridge/pre-amp being used, along with some nice helpings of crosstalk/rumble/wow/flutter/tracing distortion/surface noise.

End result is there are some definite changes from the source it is cut from - and these can be perceived as "better" by some even though they are a distortion from the original.
So - the Stereophile reviewer was actually liking the fact that what they were hearing was actually lower fidelity to the original source.

Best regards,
Steve Berson
Yep. Like you stated, a lot of the sound is the cutting electronics...and the playback system. I cut about 10 sides a week, most of them from a 16/44.1 source. If the source material sounds good and doesn't have excessive high end issues or phase issues, it should sound fine, if not better. I doubt most people could tell the difference between the same material cut at 16 bit and 24 bit. Most records (at lease since DAT/digital surpassed analog mixdown options)have gone thru some conversion during the cutting. I think it would shock quite a few people to know that those "analog" records they love so much probably passed thru a 16 bit digital delay line on their way to the cutting head. But, quite a few of us are opting to bypass that sort of delay and do it in the workstation thru a second set of converters, eliminating a stage of conversion.
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19th June 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
"Don't you tell me what I'm hearing!"
Sending 44k1/16bit masters for cutting always makes me grin because I'm sure there is someone out there who thinks this way.

I might have to edit & deliver a vinyl master for a jazz EP soon, cut down from an album. Gotta remember to seek for the reviews. I think it was also recorded on an ancient digital console.

"So palpable"
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20th June 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
I once had a reviewer from Stereophile call and was raving, raving I tell you, about the sound of an LP done the same way: I sent my eq'd CD master and someone else cut the lacquer.

"The depth, the detail, the microdynamics are beyond compare, it's just more proof of the superiority of analog"

"But it was cut from a 16 bit digtial source."

"Impossible."

"I was at the session."

"Don't you tell me what I'm hearing!"

"Uh, I gotta get back to work......."


DC
All the more respect for your SKILLZ, and still major props for your work on this record then. It's got weight, depth, height. It's got vibe. What I hear can't be denied that it's a great sounding record.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ged View Post
I think it's a well known fact DC used his Multiband Gooderizer Analog emulator Plugin on this.
You mean the one with the 12 sidechains and a built in espresso machine, is that the one? Oh wait, that would have to be the hardware version wouldn't it!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
Thanks for all the kind words!

I didn't do the lacquer mastering on either one of those records, they were cut flat from my 44/16 CD master. I believe Ken Perry did the cut.


DC
I'm guessing you were running something in the area of -12db RMS on that CD master?
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Virtalahde;
Sending 44k1/16bit masters for cutting always makes me grin because I'm sure there is someone out there who thinks
I think any audiophile worth his $3000 power cord should be able to tell if the LP was sourced from digital.


DC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
I think any audiophile worth his $3000 power cord should be able to tell if the LP was sourced from digital.
Absolutely. Since the vinyl is known to be the ultimate format in resolution, with the right equipment you should be able to hear the ramps of a 16-bit word.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
I think any audiophile worth his $3000 power cord should be able to tell if the LP was sourced from digital.


DC
Yep! Absolutely!
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FYI, I keep a wiki page on HydrogenAudio listing all the known instances of vinyl masters being sourced from CD masters (and the instances of the opposite being the case), and I've added Collins's and Lyman's quotes to that page. Hope nobody minds.

I'd like to send more love Dave's way about the mastering on Down on the Upside, btw. (On CD at least because that's what I own. :D ) It, along with Superunknown, are without question among the best mastered rock albums I have ever listened to. At least to within the limits of what can distinguish the mastering from the production and musicianship - because all are absolutely astounding. Certainly the dynamics on eg "Applebite" seem quite fresh and daring today.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Axon View Post
FYI, I keep a wiki page on HydrogenAudio listing all the known instances of vinyl masters being sourced from CD masters (and the instances of the opposite being the case), and I've added Collins's and Lyman's quotes to that page. Hope nobody minds.
I see that I'm actually sited on that page - and I want to note that the files I used for the "In Your Honor" album technically are NOT the exact same as what appears on the CD - as what I transferred was 24bit/96kHz - so what I transferred did not go through a stage of sample rate conversion and then requantization/dithering that the audio on the CD did. Granted, I'd say the effect of the hi-res transfer as a possible improvement is way less of a difference than if BL had given me a separate unclipped capture off of his process chain instead of the flat topped files I did receive.

Regarding all analog transfers -
these definitely happened for the Rachel's "Sea and Bells" album from 1996 - all analog recording and mix, with a completely analog transfer to DMM at Abbey Road - http://www.southern.com/southern/ban...8988_mast.html

and for the recent reissues of Mission of Burma's 1980's era album done at Sterling Sound by George Marino and Ray Janos
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DPj7K...x=0&playnext=1

Best regards,
Steve Berson
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22nd June 2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cellotron View Post
Regarding all analog transfers -
these definitely happened for the Rachel's "Sea and Bells" album from 1996 - all analog and mix, with a completely analog transfer to DMM at Abbey Road - Rachels - Sea and Bells Mastering Information
Thanks Steve! I loved Systems/Layers, and am looking forward to hearing this as well! (also I started a thread about the recent re-master of 'Fantastic Planet' by Failure, also a gem on vinyl! Cheers!
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cellotron View Post
I see that I'm actually sited on that page - and I want to note that the files I used for the "In Your Honor" album technically are NOT the exact same as what appears on the CD - as what I transferred was 24bit/96kHz - so what I transferred did go through a stage of sample rate conversion and then requantization/dithering. Granted, I'd say the effect of the hi-res transfer as a possible improvement is way less of a difference than if BL had given me a separate unclipped capture off of his process chain instead of the flat topped files I did receive.
Thanks a lot for catching this. I just rewrote the description for this record, and rewrote the title of this section and the top paragraph describing its meaning - does this sound more accurate to you?

Quote:
Some known counterexamples: Vinyl releases with same/similar hypercompressed master as on CD

This is a list of vinyl/CD releases, where the CD release has been considered compressed or clipped for a popular music audience, and the vinyl master has been proven to be sourced from digital audio equal in compression/clipping content to that of the CD master. This list excludes albums whose CD releases are considered relatively uncompressed or unclipped.

It does '''not''' mean the CD master necessarily sounds poor - some CDs referenced here have been highly commended for their sound quality - but it ''does'' mean that, for any of these records, if one considers the CD to be 'hypercompressed', one ought to also consider the LP to be hypercompressed as well, so preferring LP over CD for that reason would be foolish.

* Foo Fighters, ''In Your Honor'' 45rpm 4LP. Steve Berson, Total Sonic Mastering: Sourced from 24/96 digital masters, which differ from CD masters only in choice of output format. Hypercompression/clipping which existed on CD also existed on LP master.
Quote:
Regarding all analog transfers -
these definitely happened for the Rachel's "Sea and Bells" album from 1996 - all analog and mix, with a completely analog transfer to DMM at Abbey Road - http://www.southern.com/southern/ban...8988_mast.html

and for the recent reissues of Mission of Burma's 1980's era album done at Sterling Sound by George Marino and Ray Janos
YouTube - Mission of Burma- Burma Reissue Mastering Sessions Part 1
Thanks a lot - are these transfers where it is known that the CD versions of the same records are from a different master entirely? Or are the CD versions more like transfers of the analog masters used for the vinyl? It seems as if "The Sea and the Bells" has a very similar CD master as to the vinyl, but I haven't looked at the MoB YouTube yet.

I ask because that wiki page is geared more towards answering questions related to comparing vinyl releases to CD releases, and the all-analogness of a LP does not fit cleanly into that dichotomy. Less work for me if I can make it fit. :D But I'll add a separate list for all-analog releases where the CD master is sourced from the analog master (and is very similar to it), if I need to.
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I use superunknown as a reference disc.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dcollins View Post
Thanks for all the kind words!

I didn't do the lacquer mastering on either one of those records, they were cut flat from my 44/16 CD master. I believe Ken Perry did the cut.


DC
What format do you supply these days, when preparing audio for vinyl?
Do you supply audio at the same RMS levels as the CD version?

Just curious
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