It was actually the hardware that led me to try the software. Tried the headroom amp and a DIY board based on the Meier Circuit and I just don't feel there is enough there to warrant their use. Once again, as in all things soundwise there is personal preference involved. FWIW I think the tunable software versions are marginally better, but still feel they are more of an interference than a performance gain.
First off with a bullet is the Stax Space Sound CD. It really is rather the template for what binaural can do. (Also I always wondered what Sabine looks like)
http://www.discogs.com/Mozart-Edition-Vol-1/release/1818660 Anything that was released on the AudioStax Label is worth hunting down. I had the chance to clear out a shops inventory when they closed a few years ago and passed on it, Kicking myself ever since.
Explorations in Space and Time Chesky of Course.
The Martin Luther Chorales over at Binaural Source, if they're still around.
The Chesky demo CD.
Not great but of historical interest are the binaural Elvis tracks that were never released commercially. Similarly Pearl Jams effort just for the context it was used in.
Also Sprach Zarathustra / Saint Saens #3 The Pasedena Symphony Neuport Classic Auricle (this was a limited edition so may be hard to dig up)
Doh, Sound of Hand hitting forehead here. How couldI forget Ottmar Liebert's aptly named UP CLOSE recorded 2007 and readily available. HDtracks has the 24/96 version.
There are several Jazz recordings out there that make the cut but are just not my thing. Fun to listen to once but I do not wish to own them.
The thing is, there are a lot of folks out there "recording" binaurally , and a good number of them have not a clue as to how to produce one. There is significantly more to it than either wearing i ear mikes or sticking a miked head in front of the action. A lot of these rely on the Stunt Factor which is to say that a waitress taking a drink order at a jazz club is supposed to be an enhancement to the listening experience. That's not really my cup of tea. (turnabout being fair play here I have a magnificent stereo recording of Janacek completely ruined by a member of the audience sneezing at almost regular intervals, so there are times where it is out of your control) If you are demoing the abilites of binaural thats fine. If you are presenting an artist, that kind of thing just screams bad mike placement (there is a reason the classical guys suspend the Neumann head from the ceiling ) and in my humble opinion detracts from the listening experience. To do it right it is pretty much like any good recording. Musician/instrument placement is a critical element as is the miking and control over ambient noise. In short don't just run out and buy it because it says Binaural on the label. Truth of the matter is there are a lot of "Binaural" recordings out there that cannot come close to recreating the stage of Solti's Ring in stereo, recorded some 50 odd years ago. When you add to that certain orchestras that insist on releasing their stuff in MP3 format, it just begins to look like a market grab in the incumbent age of the headphone/IEM
I really am sorry if you feel this is an acidic diatribe, there's a lot of Kool Aid going around that I am not drinking right now. At this point in the technology cycle where for the first time in history headphone listening far and away outpaces speaker listening, there is a boom market in audio the like of which no one has ever seen. This of course brings out the wolves who will stick any old thing in that market for consumption. This boom, while overall a very good thing for long time headphone freaks, has brought with it considerable chaff to be removed from the wheat.
Caveat Emptor today Caveat venditor next year;)
Edited by Hutnicks - 2/15/13 at 3:24pm