Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

2 cents

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • 2 cents

    I have sevral CD's of Dan Fogelberg (who passed a short time ago) and I have to say the quality of the recordings are a disgrace to this man's music. The amount of midrange distortion and sibelance renders his music bearly listenable. Shame on you Sony Music. We spend so much time and money on buying or building speakers that we think will sound fantastic only to be at the mercy of these money grabbing studio types. The amount of music I have that is poorly recorded is astounding. Yet, these music studio idiots have the guts to go arround complaining about loss of revenues from downloaders. I have some CD's that I have paid over $30.00 for that are just plain awfull as far as production. This is not to single out Sony Music, as we all know, many others are just as guilty. I think the music reviewers should come down hard on this as part of their CD review. 2 cents.
    No matter where you go, there you are.
    Website

  • #2
    Re: 2 cents

    Originally posted by gowa View Post
    The amount of music I have that is poorly recorded is astounding. Yet, these music studio idiots have the guts to go arround complaining about loss of revenues from downloaders.
    A tiny percentage of the population gives a rat's tuckus about recording quality. People are not buying CD's because they're too expensive, not because they're poorly recorded. Convenience has a lot to do with it to. Download the music whilst eating cheetos rather than go to the store to buy a CD, which requires moving. Much quicker to download as well. Probably doesn't even occur to them that the highly compressed mp3's they're downloading sound like *ss.

    Other than that I completely agree with your rant here, and would even go so far as to value it at 3 cents ;)
    Form does not follow function
    Form is simultaneous to function

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: 2 cents

      Does anyone remember that old RCA (lates 90's?) boombox commercial where the young kid was listening to his parents' polka music but he was still enjoying it because his lil' boombox made it sound good? That's always been my goal- to get a set of speakers that makes bad music sound good.

      I worry about getting a setup that's *too* revealing since I don't really want to hear all the flaws in a poor recording, especially since a good chunk of my music is very average quality mp3s (192-320kbps).

      I don't know if there's a compromise in speaker design that makes good recordings sound great and bad recordings sound decent.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: 2 cents

        Originally posted by tubbsbright View Post
        I worry about getting a setup that's *too* revealing since I don't really want to hear all the flaws in a poor recording,
        I've often wondered, at what point does a speaker become so good that it's only useful for the best recordings? Any speakers that are notorious for this?

        It would suck if music you used to love you now don't because your speakers are too good... how ironic would that be.
        Form does not follow function
        Form is simultaneous to function

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: 2 cents

          It is true that some speakers can be a bit "temperamental" when it comes to source material. Often these speakers sound great with well recorded material but only with that type of recording. I don't think that there is a magic formula to determine which speakers will be this way but I'm pretty certain that some of it is due to frequency response and power response (both factors which are somewhat under the control of the designer) and some of it is due to the distortion profile of the drivers in use.

          Personally I tend to prefer a speaker that is a bit forgiving with poor recordings but doesn't lack detail. This rare combination exists and allows me to enjoy a wider range of my music library. The speakers that I find hard to live with are the ones that make it difficult to go deeper into my CD collection because I'm afraid that my ears might suffer. However, I don't like the other extreme, speakers that are so muddy that nothing sounds harsh through them.

          In general I've found that most speakers based on softer poly cone woofers tend to be a bit more forgiving and those based around stiffer metal cone woofers tend to make poor recordings unlistenable but this trend isn't always true. I think this is why that I tend to prefer a stiffer paper-like driver for midrange duties for the most part. However, I have created designs based upon the needs of the person that I was building them for but for the most part I usually have to take what I get when a design is finished.

          This is an interesting topic that has been discussed in the past and I have shared my opinion for a preference of a speaker that allows me to enjoy more of my recordings although it would be nice to have a speaker "lazy suzan" that could rotate in a different pair of speakers based on the source material.
          RJB Audio Projects
          http://www.rjbaudio.com

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: 2 cents

            Wonderful post, Roman...

            Glad to hear your liking of paper cones, as I'm in mid-build of my SR71's with reed paper cones... can't wait to hear how they sound.
            Form does not follow function
            Form is simultaneous to function

            Comment


            • #7
              Jay T
              http://sites.google.com/site/lhwidgetssite/home

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: 2 cents

                Originally posted by romanbednarek View Post
                In general I've found that most speakers based on softer poly cone woofers tend to be a bit more forgiving and those based around stiffer metal cone woofers tend to make poor recordings unlistenable but this trend isn't always true. I think this is why that I tend to prefer a stiffer paper-like driver for midrange duties for the most part. However, I have created designs based upon the needs of the person that I was building them for but for the most part I usually have to take what I get when a design is finished.
                I have experienced some similar things, but with a few exceptions. In my opinion, poly cones are the most forgiving by far, usually closely followed by cheap paper (not too stiff). *** The exception is heavily treated paper/textile cones. Many of FOCAL's midline speakers using their 'polyglass' material are VERY unforgiving, I cant stand listening to half my music in the car (where I have the focals). But, for well recorded instrumentals and less 'busy' music, they are fantastic (the slight lack of detail is probably because its impossible to get good midbass sound stage in a car, period).

                In regard to metal cones, I am more than happy with my RS100's. You wouldnt expect it from looking at some of the specs, but they are extremely detailed. I still dont believe it since they arnt even 4inches, but I notice new midbass detail every day I didnt know was there on my old system, which had MUCH larger woofers. After listening to how precise they are with good recordings, I would expect them to butcher poor recordings, but they do MUCH better than the Focal's in my car. But, that may be because of the superior sound stage from the full rangers as opposed to the 2-way in the car.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: 2 cents

                  Originally posted by lhwidget View Post
                  When I listen to Rickie Lee Jones (Stewart's Coat) the 12 string harmonies and her voice are fantastic, Pink Floyd is incredible, The Alman Brothers (Dreams) is incredible, The Who, mostly great, Led Zep, some OK, some unlistenable, U2 (Rattle & Hum & The Joshua Tree) are horrible without a huge treble reduction. Most of my Paul Simon recordings sound great and are exciting to listen to.

                  I wish I was into jazz or classical music more, there seems to have been much more effort put into technical accuracy in those genres (even new age)...

                  Jay T
                  A lot of popular music was/is mixed and EQ'd (and all too often compressed) to sound best on the type of equipment most people are likely to hear it on--car radios, boom boxes, and now (I suppose) Ipods with tinny-tiny ear buds. A good playback system will mercilessly reveal the flaws of these recordings.

                  The exception seems to be when the artists themselves insist on a higher standard of sonic accuracy. Floyd, Paul Simon, Rickie Lee, and the Allmans were among the more conscientious about sound quality, as were Alan Parsons, Steely Dan, CSNY, King Crimson, Yes, and a number of others.

                  If there is an underlying pattern here, perhaps it is that the less "mainstream" artists, who appeal to a more educated segment of the market, tend to be better recorded than those who grind out "music for the masses." The underlying assumption being that this target market is more prosperous and likelier to own better playback gear?

                  As for jazz and classical, recording quality varies widely in these genres too. My pet peeve is when soloists are mic'd too closely. Sitting in the audience, you don't REALLY hear the spit bubbling in the saxophonist's reed, or the keys clicking under the clarinettist's fingers, to the extent you do on many recordings.

                  The best way to learn to appreciate these genres is simply to immerse oneself in them. If the local public library has a good collection, this may be the place to start.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: 2 cents

                    One of the most memorable listening experiences I've had was a Velvet Underground recording at the San Diego airport through a lowly ipod and a set of $9.99 Panasonic earbuds; they nicely complimented the heavy distortion, grunge and noise on those recordings for a very raw performance. The same recordings are unlistenable on a good speaker system.

                    My favorite speaker for detail so far is the HiVi D5G, paper-kevlar 5".
                    http://www.parts-express.com/pe/show...number=297-419
                    I think it is even more transparent than the small RS series drivers but I've only sampled the RS125 so far.

                    Louis

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: 2 cents

                      I was at my mother's home a couple days ago, and (after everyone turning-in) I slid the volume down 'n' put "Hearts Of Space" on the SAT/Sirius/XM. Most of this [new age] music was recorded in the '70's and '80's, and sounds excellent (even from the SAT)!!!

                      GC
                      "HiFi doesn't come in bits and pieces"
                      Economic Socialism is the liberty of owner/operated businesses that Princes of forced capitalism fear most.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: 2 cents

                        Thanks Brian & GC, that actually gets my meandering thought a little straighter in my head.

                        I do think many people prefer smaller 2-ways and MTM's for classic & jazz for good reason, more accuracy. A well designed XO and decent drivers (4" to 6" woofers and an appropriate tweeter) can produce lots of detail, quite accurately. 2-ways are usually smaller, and very good ones can be built for not a lot of money. Bass extension to 50 - 40 Hz works for these genres, as well as most types of acoustic music, and a well executed 2-way, esp. sealed MTM's designed to low Q targets sound very accurate in the mid-bass and lower midrange. Acoustic bass sounds "tighter" (more accurate, less colored from a system with a Qts < 0.75).

                        I think accurate 3 & 4 ways, or well designed subs below good 2-ways will sound good reproducing anything that was well recorded, from rock to classical music.

                        I didn't mean to wonder so far off the topic of the original post.

                        The quality of the recording is what was bothering me, and thats a separate issue. It's good to hear that some of my perceptions about the recording quality of my favorite albums are shared by others. Good speakers will always make poor recordings harder to listen to.

                        How about this; (especially Paul Carmody & you other musicians)
                        What are your favorite recordings, and how high would you rate their recording quality?

                        Jay T
                        Jay T
                        http://sites.google.com/site/lhwidgetssite/home

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: 2 cents

                          Originally posted by jdclark View Post
                          In regard to metal cones, I am more than happy with my RS100's. You wouldnt expect it from looking at some of the specs, but they are extremely detailed. I still dont believe it since they arnt even 4inches, but I notice new midbass detail every day I didnt know was there on my old system, which had MUCH larger woofers. After listening to how precise they are with good recordings, I would expect them to butcher poor recordings, but they do MUCH better than the Focal's in my car. But, that may be because of the superior sound stage from the full rangers as opposed to the 2-way in the car.
                          Regarding the RS100's, I think that I know why they are more listenable. I think that the issue with most metal cones is the ringing along with harmonic distortion from lower frequency tones exciting the cone resonance. This can lead to harshness when the cone resonance is in the critical midrange or upper midrange region where are ears are more sensitive. With smaller metal cone woofers the resonance shows up higher in frequency usually in a region above our ear's most sensitive region and high enough in frequency to not be offensive. I think this is why my Microbe design (using the RS125) tends to not be harsh. This is just a theory but I've found this trend to be true for the most part.
                          RJB Audio Projects
                          http://www.rjbaudio.com

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: 2 cents

                            Originally posted by romanbednarek View Post
                            Regarding the RS100's, I think that I know why they are more listenable. I think that the issue with most metal cones is the ringing along with harmonic distortion from lower frequency tones exciting the cone resonance. This can lead to harshness when the cone resonance is in the critical midrange or upper midrange region where are ears are more sensitive. With smaller metal cone woofers the resonance shows up higher in frequency usually in a region above our ear's most sensitive region and high enough in frequency to not be offensive. I think this is why my Microbe design (using the RS125) tends to not be harsh. This is just a theory but I've found this trend to be true for the most part.
                            Roman,

                            this explanation helps much. I'm close to completing a TB 704D - Vifa XT25 project which will eventually replace a pair of Modula MTs, in part because I found the Modula's to be too fatiguing over 2 years of listening. The Modula's are excellent speakers, well balanced, and you are never conscious of hearing either the woofer or tweeter (RS28A version). But something about the quality of the sound is a bit hard on the ears, IMO. Even well-recorded material sounds a bit "cold" to me.

                            But this is never the case with your Microbe SE's. They remain very easy to listen to, and I sometimes forget that the drivers are aluminum. I often wondered why this would be the case, but your explanation the relative frquencies of cone resonance makes sense to me. No plans to replace the Microbes any time soon...

                            Cheers

                            - John

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: 2 cents

                              Originally posted by lhwidget View Post
                              The quality of the recording is what was bothering me, and thats a separate issue. It's good to hear that some of my perceptions about the recording quality of my favorite albums are shared by others. Good speakers will always make poor recordings harder to listen to.

                              How about this; (especially Paul Carmody & you other musicians)
                              What are your favorite recordings, and how high would you rate their recording quality?

                              Jay T
                              Wolf and I used a track by Eliane Elias called "Slideshow" as a reference on Saturday when we were comparing Wolf's pride and joy small speakers... This track has some really good and subtler high frequency rhythyms.

                              The good recording quality helps me a lot to enjoy the nuances of the musicians.

                              -- Compression is where most recordings go wrong. I am not talking about mp3 type compression but compression/limiting compression at the mixing board. This often sucks the life out of the recording for the purpose of increasing the RMS level of the recording without increasing the peak level of the recording.
                              I find that good compression bsustains the symbols without making it have a sharp and unnatural attack. Bad compression on a track will make all of the instruments seem quieter when extra instruments/singers hit notes. It is hard to describe how this can work until you hear some raw recordings and then tweak them using compression.
                              --I enjoy when their is a sense of space on the recording. I feel like I am there when there is a clear and unmuddied reverb to the room. Their is a delicate balance betweening adding space to the recording and adding too much space to the recording. I like live performances but I hate listening live in bad rooms. Your home theater room is bound to add some room effect. THe combination of the two rooms should sound pleasing.
                              --I hate gated drum sounds from the 80s. A real live drum sound should come from a real live drummer. Snare drums should be compressed but not destroyed.
                              -- I like some deep bass but overall the bass guitar should have some lower midrange, if the recording allows. Funky basslines often have a strong part to play in the overall rhythym and should be heard as well as felt.

                              Many producers run various parts of the recording through tube amps/preamps to deliberately introduce distortion into their sound. This is very common with not only vocals but guitars and other instruments as well.

                              I imagine that very low distortion drivers with nearly non-existant resonances can make things sound cold when they are mixed that way. A speaker with moderate amounts of distortion has been said to add "warmth" to the sound. This can be preferrable.

                              Comment

                              Working...
                              X