The No.1 Website for Pro Audio
 All  This Thread  Reviews  Gear Database  Gear for sale     Latest  Trending
Original or Remastered????
Old 3rd October 2006
  #1
Original or Remastered????

For Master-ers and Non-master-ers (please state):

When buying a CD of an album originally issued in analog, do you generally go for the original/earlier version or the remastered?
Because on one hand,
the earlier version would be closer in tune to the philosophy of the record (definitely closer to the climate of that era of musicmaking)
AND on the other hand,
nowadays we've got the way better conversion technology (but a far different sonic ethos and perhaps remastering was done in a mass manufactured do it for the money make it sound contemporary hot and loud way).

Which do you opt for and why:
Original CD release?
Re-Mastered release?
Old 3rd October 2006
  #2
Lives for gear
 

Non-Master Blaster

Vinyl.
Old 3rd October 2006
  #3
Gear Addict
 
JTransition's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Original,Infact if i see digitally remastered on any of the paperwork i generally do not buy it.
Old 3rd October 2006
  #4
arf
Gear Addict
 
arf's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mount Cyanide View Post
For Master-ers and Non-master-ers (please state):

When buying a CD of an album originally issued in analog, do you generally go for the original/earlier version or the remastered?
As usual, no one size fits all. Some engineers take remastering quite seriously and put in the time seeking out the original sources (this in itself is a nearly full-time job and not always successful) and researching and comparing all prior releases from vinyl on down. Some, don't. A good resource for remasters is the Steve Hoffman forum which is populated by serious collectors and those guys really know their stuff, sometimes knowing more about a project and its various incarnations than the labels and producers doing the re-issues. I really enjoy remastering for classic projects and routinely put most of the time in off-the-clock.
Old 3rd October 2006
  #5
Lives for gear
 
max cooper's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RadioMoo View Post
Vinyl.
Here too, and as a general rule, when buying eighties and earlier stuff, greatest hits packages don't tend to sound as good as the original release.
Old 3rd October 2006
  #6
Lives for gear
 
Jerry Tubb's Avatar
 

Verified Member
I really like the George Marino remasters of Jimi Hendrix' catalog.

Hoping for some 24-96 versions at some point.

But if I could find the virgin vinyl at a reasonable price...

All mine have been played a zillion times.

JT
Old 3rd October 2006
  #7
Lives for gear
 
AlexLakis's Avatar
 

Originals. Always. You never know when they're gonna sneak in a horn section or some ****...*AHEM*..."Shake Your Money Maker..." *AHEM* or clip it all to hell...*AHEM*...Bad Religion re-masters...*AHEM*

If you need "Dark Side of the Moon" to sound "better," then I'd hate be on the drugs you're on!

The only thing I agree with is when a young band has old albums that were "mastered" by the mixing engineer because they couldn't afford a real mastering job at the time, then they get signed or whatever, and then they can afford to get the job done right the second time around. That's fine.

Then again, I haven't heard the Boston re-masters, which are apparently very good, so I'm sure there are exeptions, just like there are exeptions to everything. (Although I can't imagine them being any "better...")
Old 4th October 2006
  #8
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by max cooper View Post
greatest hits packages don't tend to sound as good as the original release.
Especially if they were done in the early eighties or before, because they're usually dubbed from the master or from a safety copy.
Old 4th October 2006
  #9
Lives for gear
 
Tibbon's Avatar
Depends who did it

I wish they always listed on the outside who mastered or remastered something. If I look it up and found that Bob Ludwig remastered it (as I like his mastering for the most part) then I'd get it. If it says "Remastered digitally with an L2" **** it.
Old 4th October 2006
  #10
arf
Gear Addict
 
arf's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by RadioMoo View Post
Especially if they were done in the early eighties or before, because they're usually dubbed from the master or from a safety copy.
Another cool thing about the early CD 'straight transfer' releases of pre-digital stuff is that the AD conversions of the day were actually a lot better than you'd think - but you don't realize it till you play the CDs on a modern high-end DAC. A lot of those early CDs sound f'ing great on a decent system.
Old 4th October 2006
  #11
Gear Addict
 

Allow me to ask a probably-ignorant question. Don't all masters for vinyl have the RIAA pre-emphasis applied to them? That would seem to make them unusable for mastering CD as is; at the least, they would have to be re-EQ'ed.
Old 4th October 2006
  #12
Lives for gear
 
Tibbon's Avatar
I think the RIAA preemphasis is done literally while cutting the original, so if a master was made on tape before that, then it would be ok to use.
Old 4th October 2006
  #13
arf
Gear Addict
 
arf's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by cornutt View Post
Allow me to ask a probably-ignorant question. Don't all masters for vinyl have the RIAA pre-emphasis applied to them? That would seem to make them unusable for mastering CD as is; at the least, they would have to be re-EQ'ed.
THe RIAA curve is applied during the lacquer cutting - it is not applied to the master tape. However, the engineer usually did apply EQ to the mix for better translation to vinyl and often a new tape was made for future cuts that includes that EQ. If a CD is mastered from that, without correction, as often happened, it can sound off since the vinyl is no longer part of the equation.
Old 4th October 2006
  #14
Gear Addict
 
16/44.1's Avatar
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by arf View Post
Another cool thing about the early CD 'straight transfer' releases of pre-digital stuff is that the AD conversions of the day were actually a lot better than you'd think - but you don't realize it till you play the CDs on a modern high-end DAC. A lot of those early CDs sound f'ing great on a decent system.
That's the reason i'm using Sony's PCM 701 for a loooooong time for A/D conversion, after that it stays digital, allways .
It sound a lot better than my 601, which is using 1 A/D converter switching between the two channels.
It even sound better than my Sony DTC77 & DTC2000 !!!!
Very straight forward, that piece of art .
Oh.........I even added new wire from the input chassis to the amplifierprint, and no emphasis during A/D conversion.
heh
Old 4th October 2006
  #15
Gear Addict
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by arf View Post
THe RIAA curve is applied during the lacquer cutting - it is not applied to the master tape. However, the engineer usually did apply EQ to the mix for better translation to vinyl and often a new tape was made for future cuts that includes that EQ. If a CD is mastered from that, without correction, as often happened, it can sound off since the vinyl is no longer part of the equation.
Thanks for the info.

One case where I like to see remasters is in cases where compromises had to be made in order to fit the material within the limitations (such as time per side) of vinyl. For instance, I think it would be neat to hear Rush's "Farewell to Kings" album re-mastered for CD at the proper speed, and with the songs in the order that the band and producer intended. Apparently, they had to do some pretty severe things to that one to cram it onto vinyl.
Old 5th October 2006
  #16
Here for the gear
 

Hi,
First post here in Gearslutz, after literally "swallowing" B. Swedien's forum...
Originals always...!!!
If they still exist anyway...But be awareof some fancy and perfectlooking vinyl remakes too,
Last year I bought an otherwise meticulus re-issue of Led Zeppeling's
"In through the outdoor",(vinyl) saying it was cut from the originals and it was a big disappointment .
It sounded like... well.....digital...
Old 5th October 2006
  #17
Lives for gear
 
Jerry Tubb's Avatar
 

Verified Member
I also really enjoy George Marino's recent remastering work on Led Zeppelin II.

Although I might prefer an extra dB of low end, it simply sounds fabulous.

I also have the original vinyl that I purchased on the day it was released.
Old 6th October 2006
  #18
Lives for gear
 
Darius van H's Avatar
 

Verified Member
I also avoid remasters - 'cause they're usually squashed - unfortunately some of the earlier CD releases were incredibly thin and tinny.
Old 6th October 2006
  #19
Lives for gear
 
Empty Planet's Avatar
 

Don't know who did the Lennon remasters, but the "Walls & Bridges" I have is harsh and unpleasant. I somehow doubt Lennon would have approved it.

Cheers.


Old 8th October 2006
  #20
Lives for gear
 
taturana's Avatar
 

Verified Member
yes but...

i'll also love the led zeppelin ii remasters... my reference for rock drum sounds... full sound... bonham is king... listened to the cd until had to buy a new one...

also stevie wonder- innervision got a great remaster done. the credits go for kevin reeves at universal mastering...

peter gabriel 's passion on sacd sound too good. ian cooper at townhouse cutting room...

in general, if they are done a top notch pro with the right equipment i see no reason for it not to sound good... technology moves on... the sound quality should too...

but i still like my vinyls....
Old 9th October 2006
  #21
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by arf View Post
Another cool thing about the early CD 'straight transfer' releases of pre-digital stuff is that the AD conversions of the day were actually a lot better than you'd think - but you don't realize it till you play the CDs on a modern high-end DAC. A lot of those early CDs sound f'ing great on a decent system.
What I was saying is that they compiled a new master tape for greatest hits packages by dubbing the individual songs from (ideally) the original stereo masters or from safety copies, so you were two, three or more generations removed from the session master (hiss, loss of resolution, etc.).
Old 6th January 2013
  #22
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mount Cyanide View Post
For Master-ers and Non-master-ers (please state):

When buying a CD of an album originally issued in analog, do you generally go for the original/earlier version or the remastered?
Because on one hand,
the earlier version would be closer in tune to the philosophy of the record (definitely closer to the climate of that era of musicmaking)
AND on the other hand,
nowadays we've got the way better conversion technology (but a far different sonic ethos and perhaps remastering was done in a mass manufactured do it for the money make it sound contemporary hot and loud way).

Which do you opt for and why:
Original CD release?
Re-Mastered release?
ORIGINAL any day!

"Remastered" is simply a marketing term for the sausages they are turning our classic hits into.

At the FYE last week I actually convinced a gent to purchase an original CD of Rush over the remaster(Farewell to Kings, they were back-to-back on the shelves).

cha-ching!!
Old 6th January 2013
  #23
Lives for gear
 
popmann's Avatar
Order of priority:

mobile fidelity or DCC'S masters.
label SACD or DVD-A
Original release CDs 88-97 (meaning original album release then--End of the Innocence or Appetite For Destruction come to mind)
Transfer CDs from 85-99'ish (originally recorded prior to then...label transfers)
Label remaster CDs
Mp3 of the last one

There are exceptions. I think the label did a decent job with the Beatles catalog. Nicer...little louder than I would like...but, better than the tinny transfers from 87. I was recently SERIOUSLY let down by the label released Elton John on SACD. It proves that if you crush and brighten, it doesn't much matter how nicely the format CAN sound. The same releases by Mobile Fidelity on CD are much nicer.

Anyway...the love of vinyl has zippo to do with the wonderfulness of the format...everything to do with the dog crap masters on CD, and not enough available on SACD (done well) to make up.

I've long said the industry needs to go back to a dual format structure. SACD mastered for fidelity...and mp3 downloads mastered for iPods and cars. It's not like that's hard to do. I digress. I love MoFi...they are doing god's work.
Old 6th January 2013
  #24
Lives for gear
 
popmann's Avatar
I got the mobile fidelity Billy Joel SACDs for the holidays. Truly a listening treat. Best of all worlds.
Old 6th January 2013
  #25
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by popmann View Post
Order of priority:

mobile fidelity or DCC'S masters.
label SACD or DVD-A
Original release CDs 88-97 (meaning original album release then--End of the Innocence or Appetite For Destruction come to mind)
Transfer CDs from 85-99'ish (originally recorded prior to then...label transfers)
Label remaster CDs
Mp3 of the last one

There are exceptions. I think the label did a decent job with the Beatles catalog. Nicer...little louder than I would like...but, better than the tinny transfers from 87. I was recently SERIOUSLY let down by the label released Elton John on SACD. It proves that if you crush and brighten, it doesn't much matter how nicely the format CAN sound. The same releases by Mobile Fidelity on CD are much nicer.

Anyway...the love of vinyl has zippo to do with the wonderfulness of the format...everything to do with the dog crap masters on CD, and not enough available on SACD (done well) to make up.

I've long said the industry needs to go back to a dual format structure. SACD mastered for fidelity...and mp3 downloads mastered for iPods and cars. It's not like that's hard to do. I digress. I love MoFi...they are doing god's work.
"Mastered for iPods & cars"? Not necessary. Wrap the user around the music, not the music around the user. They want to listen to "Behind Blue Eyes" through earbuds while mowing the lawn on a tract 1/2mile from Chicago O'Hare? Or on a pocket-sized portable speaker on the third shift at a blast furnace? That's their problem.

Labels, artists, mixers, and masterers should be under NO OBLIGATION to tailor the sound to such listening environments(if they can be labeled as such, LOL!). Back in the '70s-80s if we wanted to hear our music at the beach it was a dinky transistor or boombox. If we really wanted to hear it, we waited til we got home to fire it up on the component rack. There was no such thing as an "audiophile" mix, or a "500HP-Corvette-Convertible-Tearing-Down-I95-At-80mph-Mix"!!

Just what the HELL is going on around here these days?!

It's time to clean house. . .

The common-sense police are knocking.
Old 6th January 2013
  #26
Lives for gear
 
popmann's Avatar
There's a reason for loud mastering. I can ask 10 non musicians I know and at LEAST 9 will Pock the louder one every time. If not 9.5. Particularly if you ask them to listen on "whatever" system they usually listen to music on.

And those are the same people who listen as background...and the same people who love being able to quickly buy/download mp3 or AAC files. I say it's win/win. Otherwise, you either say screw 95% of the potential audience and make both masters for fidelity...or you do what's been done for the last 15 years or so--ruin music recordings for the serious listeners (driving them back to VINYL for goodness sake), who also serve as tastemakers.

In the history of recorded music, there's only been a mono format in the last 20 years. There was always a fidelity format and a convenience format.
Old 6th January 2013
  #27
Lives for gear
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by popmann View Post
There's a reason for loud mastering. I can ask 10 non musicians I know and at LEAST 9 will Pock the louder one every time. If not 9.5. Particularly if you ask them to listen on "whatever" system they usually listen to music on.

And those are the same people who listen as background...and the same people who love being able to quickly buy/download mp3 or AAC files. I say it's win/win. Otherwise, you either say screw 95% of the potential audience and make both masters for fidelity...or you do what's been done for the last 15 years or so--ruin music recordings for the serious listeners (driving them back to VINYL for goodness sake), who also serve as tastemakers.

In the history of recorded music, there's only been a mono format in the last 20 years. There was always a fidelity format and a convenience format.
At least 9 will pick the louder.. because they simply don't know any better!

I took the time to train myself and learn to hear/analyze/see the difference. I was one of that 90% until 5 years ago, when I began reading about the way modern albums are produced, and about remastering.

And hopefully it is just a trend, because thankfully trends don't last forever.
Old 6th January 2013
  #28
Lives for gear
 
popmann's Avatar
It's not. Problem is, it's being supported by the powerless playback systems now that expect stupid RMS levels. It actually DOES sound better in cars and iDocks and (typical) computer speakers. It's not because they don't know any better. It's because they don't listen to music on stereos. I know people with HUGE dollars in surround home theatre setups...and they download mp3s and put them on iPods and thumbdrives for their car. They have some like 15wt iDock thing in their garage.

If you're old enough, and aware of demographic sales, cassettes made up 80% of record sales in the 80s. When CDs took the majority of the rest, they stopped LPs. They didn't surpass cassettes until everyone had CD players in cars and big box retail dropped the price to $9.99-10.99 for popular titles.

Point is...none of this is new. Most people want convenience. Dual masters is actually the workable compromise.
Old 6th January 2013
  #29
Lives for gear
 
Adam Dempsey's Avatar
 

Verified Member
Quote:
Originally Posted by popmann View Post
Point is...none of this is new. Most people want convenience. Dual masters is actually the workable compromise.
I know of no artist who wants to compromise their work on the production side for the lowest common denominator. Loudness (dynamic compression) on the playback side to overcome increasingly noisy listening environments is the ideal workable compromise, while respecting the art of making music.

The best remasters, IME, are from bettered sources than before, involving better transfers than before and often less processed than before. Thus, it's a case-by-case basis. Dark Side of the Moon being a prime case point (Harvest CD EQ'd-for-vinyl 2nd gen tape source vs the EMI 30th anniv – compared level matched).
Old 6th January 2013
  #30
Deleted 691ca21
Guest
It all depends. I try to research it first. If there are loads of ME's and audiophiles complaining that the remaster is crushed, I don't buy it. If they are singing it's praises then I do. Seems to work for me in most cases. If I can't find any reviews then I might buy blind. Sometimes pleasantly surprised, sometimes horrified...
Post Reply

Welcome to the Gearslutz Pro Audio Community!

Registration benefits include:
  • The ability to reply to and create new discussions
  • Access to members-only giveaways & competitions
  • Interact with VIP industry experts in our guest Q&As
  • Access to members-only sub forum discussions
  • Access to members-only Chat Room
  • Get INSTANT ACCESS to the world's best private pro audio Classifieds for only USD $20/year
  • Promote your eBay auctions and Reverb.com listings for free
  • Remove this message!
You need an account to post a reply. Create a username and password below and an account will be created and your post entered.


 
 
Slide to join now Processing…
Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Forum Jump
Forum Jump