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Why do CDs need to be mastered differently to Vinyl? - Page 2

post #16 of 47
the funny thing is that they keep looking for ways to make it even louder: Sonnox Oxford Inflator
post #17 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by haloxt View Post
The answer is to give recording engineers headphones and speakers that exacerbate common recording mistakes/abuses. The Ultrasone pro 900 is a good candidate. Static, crackle and compressed noises sound like your head is being swarmed by flying insects, and the hollow midrange, tinny highs and choked bass will feel like fingernails down a chalk board with very smiley-curved music. If anyone ruins a record using such a phone, he should be put in a mental asylum where he can't do anymore harm.
I think one of the worst recordings I have is U2's No Line on the Horizon on CD. When I listen to it either with my Stax or Senn 580s the electrical noise and poor splicing on some tracks is just unbearable. The first Jewel album is terrible on a few tracks.
post #18 of 47
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by terriblepaulz View Post
I think this hits the proverbial nail on the head. It's been "survival of the loudest" on radio for 30+ years, and the proliferation of mp3 players has exacerbated that trend. If you want your music to be exposed to a larger audience, it has to stand out from the crowd, hopefully in the first 6-7 seconds of the song. Aspiring musicians are simply rational marketplace actors pursuing their self interest when they order their mixing engineer to crank it up.
Sure if you're a new un-established act and want to stand out from the crowd this explains loudness (sort of).

So what is an established group like Metallica's and U2's excuse? Or is the record company calling the shots?
post #19 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark_Jump View Post
Sure if you're a new un-established act and want to stand out from the crowd this explains loudness (sort of).

So what is an established group like Metallica's and U2's excuse? Or is the record company calling the shots?
Well there is no excuse for Death Magnetic. But I imagine established artists, as well as new acts succumb to commercial pressure. At that point, I imagine it's more about ego than sales, but that's just a guess.
post #20 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by terriblepaulz View Post
I think this hits the proverbial nail on the head. It's been "survival of the loudest" on radio for 30+ years, and the proliferation of mp3 players has exacerbated that trend. If you want your music to be exposed to a larger audience, it has to stand out from the crowd, hopefully in the first 6-7 seconds of the song. Aspiring musicians are simply rational marketplace actors pursuing their self interest when they order their mixing engineer to crank it up.
What I find sad is seeing young kids / teenagers walking around listening to (what now counts as popular/chart music*) low bit rate mp3s out of the crappy speakers in their mobile phones at a volume as loud as possible. That's got to be as bad as the old "dial-a-disc" we had in the UK in the 1970s/80s where you rang a phone number to listen to chart music (which naturally sounded terrible with old phone equipment).

* I am now officially a grumpy old man.
post #21 of 47
Thread Starter 
I would like to listen to a prime example of loud vs non loud.

Does anyone know two identical tracks where one has been seriously louded up?
post #22 of 47
I do! from Lee Fields, same song...one is grossly loud and the other sounds completely dull.

ideally they should have gone for an in-between, both versions fail big time....I don't think I'd be allowed to post a short sample of each, though.
post #23 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post
I do! from Lee Fields, same song...one is grossly loud and the other sounds completely dull.

ideally they should have gone for an in-between, both versions fail big time....I don't think I'd be allowed to post a short sample of each, though.
Under "fair use" you can (I believe) post 30 second (or 10% whichever is shorter) samples at reduced quality i.e Mp3 or you could run them in a sound package and show the resulting waveform.

This is where classical music lovers can be a little bit smug, *generally* prolonged over-loudness is not a problem.
post #24 of 47
well, I got warned for posting 30" FLAC's in the past, so..

honestly, I think they were expecting miracles from the mastering engineer...it seems like the recording engineer did a very lousy mix, garbage in garbage out...the song is great, though! and I prefer a lousy mix over an uber-loud version anyway.

a guy complains about it here: Amazon.com: Customer Reviews: My World
Quote:
i like the other mixes of a bunch of these tunes better

wonder why the mixes from the fallin off the reel (vol. 2) sampler didnt make it? they have a more rugged and sticky sweet vibe that i personally prefer. these mixes sound a bit more sterile, so definitely check those others out.
when I whined to his manager, he told me to buy the vinyl if I don't like the CD mastering....a perfect album completely ruined
post #25 of 47
Thread Starter 
Do you know if there is anything on ITunes that I can look for?

Like an identical song 'louded up' on a later album.
post #26 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shark_Jump View Post
I would like to listen to a prime example of loud vs non loud.

Does anyone know two identical tracks where one has been seriously louded up?
What about the Guitar Hero mix of Death Magnetic vs. the standard release?
post #27 of 47
maybe I can make 15" mp3's of my two files? I dunno what the rules are.
post #28 of 47
This whole thread is kinda predicated on a myth, actually.

Death Magnetic on LP uses the same masters as the CD. Comparisons of sample-resolution waveform plots will readily identify that the regions of clipping on the CD are just as wide as the regions of clipping on the LP. The only way that happens is if both versions of the album share a common, clipped source.

However, that is not immediately obvious with a zoomed-out waveform plot, because various (unrelated) effects of LP mastering/playback mean that the "flat tops" of clipped signal on the CD become skewed, and no longer reaching peak value, on LP.

Vinyl can always be cut with a hypercompressed CD master. The restrictions placed on vinyl mastering relate to more specific parameters than how hypercompressed the master is. If the master is, in fact, too "loud", many tools are available to solve this in order to safely cut the LP and ensure playback on consumer players. The simplest fix is to simply turn the volume down on the cutting head so that the record is "physically" quieter. Multiband limiting can also be used (acceleration limiting) to reduce the amount of loud high frequency content. There are also more exotic solutions like half-speed mastering, faster linear velocity (switching to 45rpm and staying on the outer grooves), etc. Hypercompressed stuff requires more hackery to cut, but it can still be cut.

Of course, none of this changes the fact that optimal vinyl mastering generally favors uncompressed, higher-dynamic-range masters. But it is an absolute falsehood that vinyl masters must be superior to CD masters. That's quite demonstrably false from a signal processing perspective.

Many might still prefer the sound of the vinyl vs CD when the masters are the same but you can't really argue that is any purer of a way to listen to the music at that point.
post #29 of 47
we're mostly talking about facts, not theory...and CD's -more often than not- get the loudness war treatment, when vinyls simply don't.
post #30 of 47
Quote:
Originally Posted by leeperry View Post
we're mostly talking about facts, not theory...and CD's -more often than not- get the loudness war treatment, when vinyls simply don't.
That is quite demonstrably false. The existence of the Death Magnetic LPs - either edition - are a clear counterexample to the claim that vinyls "simply don't" get the loudness war treatment.

I've compared ~6 non-audiophile new releases on LP vs CD (when the two were released simultaneously), across 2 or 3 different labels, and did not find any evidence to support the claim that the vinyl master did not use the CD master. Obviously that's not a great sample set but I'm through with wasting money on buying LP releases just to satisfy my curiousity of how their masterings compare to CD.

At least one clear example has been described where an audiophile pressing was sourced from clipped masters.

Unless you have specific information about the mastering of an LP, and how it differs from a digital release (eg, what went on with the Icky Thump pressing), or if you have access to a LP/CD comparison which shows a clear difference in clipping duration: both theory, and empirical data, strongly suggest that you should assume that the LP, if it's of an album produced in the hypercompressed era, is mastered from a source as equally hypercompressed as on the CD.
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