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Classical Music - Box Sets

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 

There are a ton of "big" box sets released in the past few years and still being released today that are exceptional bargains. They allow you to get master performances of some great music for as low as $2 per CD, some less than $1. These are great buys for those looking to grow their classical collection or just starting out. With the holiday season coming up, I thought I would assemble a list of some good ones. I might add approximate prices soon, but they probably wouldn't be updated very often. If I were you I would check both Amazon and ArkivMusic to see if one is considerably cheaper than the other before buying.

 

RCA's "Big" Box Sets

 

RCA Victor's Living Stereo Collection [60 CD] - Amazon

The version released in 2010 is going for $180 on Amazon ($3 / disc) and more elsewhere. Now its being re-released on December 4, 2012 for $109 on Amazon ($1.82 / disc)! UPDATE: SOLD OUT AT AMAZON BEFORE NOON THE DAY IT WAS RELEASED.

Here's some info on the Living Stereo remasters http://www.arkivmusic.com/classical/RCALivingStereo.jsp

 

Arturo Toscanini: The Complete RCA Collection [84 CD + DVD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

 

Decca's "Big" Box Sets

 

Mercury's Living Presence: The Collector's Edition [50 CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at Decca's website: http://www.deccaclassics.com/cat/single?PRODUCT_NR=4783566

UPDATE: SOLD OUT AT AMAZON, PRICE JUMP AT ARKIVMUSIC

 

The Decca Sound [50CD] - ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at Decca's website: http://www.deccaclassics.com/cat/single?PRODUCT_NR=4782826

 

Philips Original Jackets Collection: Obsessed With Sound [55 CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at Decca's website: http://www.deccaclassics.com/cat/single?PRODUCT_NR=4784614

 

Deutsche Grammophon's "Big" Box Sets

 

111 Years of Deutsche Grammophon [55 CD] (CURRENTLY UNAVAILABLE) - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at DGG's website: http://www.deutschegrammophon.com/cat/single/?PRODUCT_NR=4778167

 

Mozart 111 Masterworks [55CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at DGG's website: http://www.deutschegrammophon.com/cat/single?PRODUCT_NR=4790059

 

Archiv Produktion's All-Baroque Box: From Monteverdi to Bach [50 CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at DGG's website: http://www.deutschegrammophon.com/gpp/index/4790441-baroque-box

 

Glenn Gould: The Complete Bach Collection [38 CD + 6 DVD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

 

Karajan - 1960s [82 CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at DGG's website: http://www.deutschegrammophon.com/cat/single?PRODUCT_NR=4790055

 

Magnificat: 500 Years of Choral Masterworks [50 CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at DGG's website: http://www.deutschegrammophon.com/cat/single?PRODUCT_NR=4783640

 

Sony Classical's "Big" Box Sets

 

Murray Perahia - The First 40 Years [67 CD + 5 DVD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

 

Leonard Bernstein: The Symphony Edition [60 CD] - Amazon

 

Brilliant's "Really Big" Box Sets

 

Beethoven Edition: Complete Works [85 CD] - ArkivMusic

 

Richard Strauss Edition [35 CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at Brilliant's website: http://www.brilliantclassics.com/release.aspx?id=FM00402263

 

Shostakovich Edition [51 CD] - ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at Brilliant's website: http://www.brilliantclassics.com/release.aspx?id=FM00424463

 

Tchaikovsky Edition [60 CD] - ArkivMusic

Complete disc & track listing, as well as product info at Brilliant's website: http://www.brilliantclassics.com/release.aspx?id=FM00394943

 

Bach: Complete Edition [157 CD + 2 DVD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

 

Mozart Edition: Complete Works [170CD + DVD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

 

Haydn Edition [150CD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

 

Other Really Big Box Sets

 

The Complete Bach Edition from Teldec/Warner Classics [153 CD + DVD] - Amazon; ArkivMusic

Product info and individual disc information at Warner Classics website: http://www.warnerclassics.com/release,TheCompleteBachEdition_6056.htm

 

Wilhelm Furtwängler: The Legacy from Membran [107 CD] - Amazon


Edited by mpsipos - 12/17/12 at 5:10pm
post #2 of 14
I heard that the Toscanini box will be discounted later today at Amazon.com and currently third party sellers have the Brilliant Classics Beethoven box for cheap. Amazon.de currently has a Brilliant Classics sale with a dirt cheap price on the Bach box. The RCA Living Stereo box is a bit cheaper than the US price at Amazon.es.

You should add Membran's spectacular historical recordings box Meister Conzerte and the various complete Wagner opera and the Verdi La Scala collections to your list.

There's also a Chandos 30th anniversary box, Vivarte Collection, Perfect Classical box and Secret Labyrinth

Heifetz, Horowitz, Rubinstein boxes. Two Karajan at EMI boxes, the Membran Karajan before the 60s box, harmonia Mundi anniversayr box, Baroque box

There's a box that takes music up to Beethoven, but I can't remember the title. I think it's Harmonia Mundi.
Edited by bigshot - 11/20/12 at 1:23pm
post #3 of 14

RCA Living Stereo box 1 re-released and I finally got a copy after reading this thread ages ago!

 

Excellent selection and nice memories associated with many of these discs. Had to resurrect my old CD player in order to enjoy it though - my MacBook gave up its CD player.

 

Thanks!

post #4 of 14

Great score! That is one of the best of the bargain boxes. Too bad volume 2 didn't come close to matching it.

post #5 of 14

The Perahia set is available at an astonishing price ($60 or thereabouts) on Amazon just now.  The packaging is especially handsome, although not altogether CD-shelf friendly.

post #6 of 14

For someone starting out, what is a good recommendation?  I'm thinking about the two Mercury Living Presence sets.

post #7 of 14

Deutsche Grammophon is releasing a limited run of Carlos Kleiber's recordings with the Berlin Philharmonic on vinyl at the end of September. They're also releasing a CD box set, but if you're into vinyl, this is something to watch for and add to your collection.

post #8 of 14
Vienna Philharmonic (Kleiber)
post #9 of 14

I have Berlin on the brain lately because of their Digital Concert Hall series. Actually, the set I'm thinking of includes recordings from Dresden, Bayern, Leipzig and several others.


Edited by shetech - 9/7/14 at 6:46pm
post #10 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by oryan_dunn View Post
 

For someone starting out, what is a good recommendation?  I'm thinking about the two Mercury Living Presence sets.

 

I have just about every one of the boxes. I would recommend the first Living Stereo box above all else, then the Bernstein box, and Gunter Wand.

post #11 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by bigshot View Post

I have just about every one of the boxes. I would recommend the first Living Stereo box above all else, then the Bernstein box, and Gunter Wand.

Thanks. Do you know, are the RCAs the remastered versions?
post #12 of 14

  Having just finished the first Living Stereo, I certainly agree it's an exemplary set.

  As for other options, there is the upcoming second Bernstein box, focusing on concertos and other non-symphonic orchestra works; it's available from amazon UK for about 90$. The track listing says 80 cds, but at the moment amazon lists it as 60. Either way, it's a steal

post #13 of 14

   And also, if you're into (or at least interested in) the core composers, don't overlook the complete sets of Bach, Beethoven, etc. from the Brilliant label. Obviously, they are not quite stellar from start to finish, but they are respectable. A solid foundation, in my opinion.

post #14 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by oryan_dunn View Post


Thanks. Do you know, are the RCAs the remastered versions?

 

They sound exactly like the SACDs.

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