accuracy is subjective
Feb 23, 2021 at 5:02 AM Post #16 of 23

Redcarmoose

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@bigshot Musicians spend many years practicing their instruments creating live acoustic effects. They listen to each other. They have feedback from a teacher. They conduct.

They listen to themselves live when they practice. They don't wear earplugs while practicing. They don't judge their performance through a speaker.

I'm also talking about a perspective in which these live acoustic effects are much more desirable than any playback through a speaker, where there is always something key lost. So in this perspective accuracy means to get as close to the live effect as possible without losing things that are essential to the desired effect. Apparently that's not the way you work, and that's how you like it. But that's not the only way to work.

To evaluate accuracy we must consider the whole chain including microphones and speakers. Although we tend to divide the audio business into the recording and say that is one thing, and playback and say that's another, the only meaning of accuracy must include how they function together. Your perspective is perhaps practical, but also artificial and I would argue counterproductive. Depending on how it affects your recordings, I might find it compromises the quality compared to something better to me like the Sheffield Labs orchestral recordings.
What your expressing here is beyond anything that has to do with music recordings or the music playback process in general.

You can visit a female singer perform in 5 difference places and she will sound exactly the same regardless of room response. There is a physiological set circumstance which takes place which has evolved way way farther than what deals with sound waves and recordings.

The easiest way to understand what processing the mind does is by looking at the modern day AI processing on old foggy photos.

The human mind in a live situation actually filters the music and adds AI (only it’s authentic intelligence) perception crossing and bettering any and all recording possibilities.

This single threshold is also the final paradigm which will never allow authentic prerecorded true to life reproduction, unless of course we cross that line with AI playback.

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Feb 23, 2021 at 5:09 AM Post #17 of 23

bigshot

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Subjectivity and objectivity are two different things. Yin doesn’t exist without yang. If you stick them in a blender and mix them up, you end up with nothing. This isn’t hard to understand.
 
Feb 23, 2021 at 1:12 PM Post #19 of 23

bigshot

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The parts where you blend the meanings of accuracy (which is objective) and creative decision making (which is subjective). Mike placement, mixing and the ways musicians perform are all creative choices. Speaker placement and calibration and playing back a CD is an objective process involved with fidelity.

The purpose of recording is purely creative. The goal isn't to faithfully recreate the live performance, it's to create a virtual performance that is optimized for the medium. Once all the creative decisions have been made, they are memorialized on a compact disc. And playback is purely a matter of accuracy. The goal is to faithfully reproduce the sound that the people who created the recording intended you to hear. The closer you get, the higher the fidelity. Creativity and fidelity are two completely different things. It's the yin and yang of recorded music. They don't intersect. They complement each other.

Playing a CD isn't creative, and the process of recording music isn't a matter of accuracy. Two completely separate things.

By the way, the Sheffield Lab orchestral recordings aren't very good. Leinsdorf was old and tired at that point and the performances were under rehearsed. There are much better performances of those works, recorded just as well. Sheffield's pop/jazz/elevator music albums are better performed and recorded... if that is what you call that kind of music. It's an odd genre.
 
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Feb 23, 2021 at 5:57 PM Post #20 of 23

VNandor

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There are many reasons to record music. But let's consider the example of hearing an acoustic performance in a concert hall that gives us pleasant feelings. It is the pleasure and the subjective effect of those sounds that motivate us to record them.

Then we step into the control room and listen. Do we experience those same feelings and effects? If so, the recording is accurate. If not, it is inaccurate.
If you decide to define accuracy like that, then accuracy is subjective for sure. Although I can't help but wonder if there are enough people who think of accuracy like this to make this definition useful.
 
Feb 23, 2021 at 6:15 PM Post #21 of 23

bigshot

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Under that definition, there aren't any accurate recordings.
 
Feb 23, 2021 at 8:54 PM Post #22 of 23

johncarm

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Players of acoustic instruments spend their lives practicing making effects that are audible in acoustic spaces. For example, a pianist might create shades of legato for expressive purposes, such as getting a particular line to "sing." If you can hear that singing quality in the recording, it's a score on the side of accuracy. If you can't, it's an inaccurate recording.

So bigshot what you are describing is merely one way to think about recording, by no means the only way and in fact I would argue an inferior way. There's no absolute justification for how you use the words subjective and objective. I suspect you use these categories to divvy up the world into pieces that are easy to process.
 
Feb 23, 2021 at 9:32 PM Post #23 of 23

bigshot

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Like I say. I've supervised recording sessions and mixes. I've worked with sound engineers. Even if the sound appears to be "realistic" to you on the recording, it isn't captured realistically. The sound and acoustics are 100% designed by the engineers using creativity and subjective judgement. This isn't just for Pink Floyd. It's true for classical music too. The exception would be binaural recordings and there are very few of those, and even fewer that compare in quality to normal sound mixing techniques. Producing commercially recorded music is a creative process. It isn't just pointing a microphone and hitting record and slapping what you get on a CD.

Playback is completely objective though. You meet calibration standards and play the music back in a suitable listening room and you hear pretty much what the people who made the recording intended. Obviously there there is a range from low fidelity to high fidelity... not very accurate to very faithful. But that depends on the technical specs, not the creativity of the listener.

This stuff is pretty obvious. I think you're just arguing for the sake of arguing.
 
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