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Music is mastered so poorly these days

post #1 of 54
Thread Starter 
What can us audio-sensitive people do about the terrible terrible mastering done to music these days?

I feel its very hard to determine what a great headphone or speaker is because most music is incredibly compressed and excessively bright today. Rolled Off Headphones like Bose tripods sound often better with newly mastered CDs than my R10s hahahhaha.....maybe thats not true, but you know what i mean.......mastering is just horrendous......what can we do? HAHAH, obviously nothing, but I thought I'd voice my feelings.
post #2 of 54
The music being mastered horribly tends to be horrible music to begin with

Not as much of an epidemic as it seems, I think, because it still majorly applies only to the mainstream pop music, which of course really only accounts for maybe 5% of music? And I think I'm being generous on that figure

I don't think anything can be done because the people who listen to the poorly mastered music have no clue and could care less if they did
post #3 of 54
I have only a few albums that are really poorly mastered, but that I dearly love.

The first one that jumps to mind is "Alright, Still" by Lily Allen. Say what you will, but I love the girl's voice, the production, all of it.

But we know the loudness war is a response to terrestrial radio, and terrestrial radio is dying. I think this thing will go away if we wait it out.

Mastering engineers love music. They'd love to make great music. As the mainstream music distribution system is slowly but surely dismantled, I expect we'll hear less crappy mastering.
post #4 of 54
Haven't we had the same topic a few days ago? Anyway the only really badly mastered albums I know of are the mainstream ones where they are trying to recapture the 'homemade' feeling that the mainstream drones love. You should just stay far away from those albums.
post #5 of 54
post #6 of 54
Um, it's not just mainstream pop recordings. A lot of metal is mastered that way, too.
post #7 of 54
Some great talents' work have been ruined by mastering recently: Emmylou Harris and Led Zeppelin TSRTS are just two examples.

This problem isn't isolated to no-talent pop artists.
post #8 of 54
Quote:
Not as much of an epidemic as it seems, I think, because it still majorly applies only to the mainstream pop music, which of course really only accounts for maybe 5% of music?
Not even close, it affects all genres of music (except classical), and even 90% of re-issues of older material.
post #9 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by evanft View Post
Um, it's not just mainstream pop recordings. A lot of metal is mastered that way, too.
Don't remind me.

I curse the day Pro-tools and the iPod was invented.
post #10 of 54
Thread Starter 
Some songs on Songs in the Key of Life are so hard on the ears. I can't imagine this is how they really sounded way back in 76
post #11 of 54
Quote:
Originally Posted by DavidMahler View Post
Some songs on Songs in the Key of Life are so hard on the ears. I can't imagine this is how they really sounded way back in 76
Remaster? All the Stevie Wonder remasters are crap. The originals, while not perfect, are worlds better.
post #12 of 54
alright, remasters being notorious for bad mastering - this category on top of mainstream pop

of course there are exceptions everywhere

but I don't run into the issue too often - it seems like half (or more) of the problem is with people having an originla reference source of material that is deviated from, causing an issue

I'd love for any and all music to be mastered bettered, too

Don't have any ideas nor the genuine passion for this issue to really hash out a masterplan for fixing it - after having skimmed it and it's difficulty to manage.. individual sources... complete lack of awareness from the consumer market that drives it..

Also similar to hardcore gamers in MMORPGs and the like. Very opinionated, concerned & involved participants, yet, they make up such a tiny portion of the consumer base.

It's kind of like asking how we can improve the SQ on iPods. You represent such a negligible minority - and, they are catering to a much, much larger body of consumers by mastering it in a way we dislike.
post #13 of 54
Two words: vintage vinyl.

But yeah, it is a shame. For every well-produced album, you've got ten good but horribly-produced albums. What I'd pay for a version of Symphony X's Paradise Lost with a clean mastering...
post #14 of 54
Funny; nearly all of my music has been created within the past ten years or so, and all of it sounds just fine to me.
post #15 of 54
These remasters don't spare any genre (maybe classical music is safe, but no other genre!) from blues and jazz to slow prog rock, everything seems to be compressed. No matter how is the remastering done, but then afterwards the 'good' amount of volume-up destroys it.
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