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Sound Quality and Musical Content.

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  • Sound Quality and Musical Content.

    Are their albums in your collection that you listen to mostly because they have great sound, even if the music is uninteresting? That is, if they were mere average recordings you probably wouldn’t ever listen to them?

    By the same token, are there any albums in your collection that are mediocre at best from a sound quality standpoint, but you love the music so you listen to them anyway?

    As your system has improved over the years, have you found a change with either of the two categories? Do you tend to focus on better sounding albums only or does improving your system allow you get the best out of the mediocre recording too?

    I’ve tried to word this carefully, as I’m not trying to spark controversy or tell anyone they are right or wrong. Just curious.
    Steve Lefkowicz
    Senior Associate Editor at Positive Feedback
    -
    Analog 1: Linn LP12 (MOSE/Hercules II), Ittok, Dynavector 10X5 MK.II Low, iPhono2/iPowerX; Analog 2: Pro-Ject RPM-1 Carbon, Talisman S, iFi iPhono.
    Digital: Samsung 300E5C notebook, JRiver Media Center 28, Tidal HiFi, Qobuz Studio), iFi NEO iDSD, iFi iUSB3, iPurifier2, Audioquest Jitterbug.
    Electronics: DIY passive line-stage, Antique Sound Labs MG-SI15DT-S, Burson Timekeeper Virtuoso
    Speakers: Tekton Lore, Magneplaner .7
    Interconnects: Morrow Audio MA1, Vermouth Audio Black Pearl, Audioquest Evergreen
    Speaker cables: Morrow Audio SP4, Vermouth Audio Red Velvet, Audioquest Type 5
    Digital cables: Aural Symphonics USB, iFi Gemini twin-head USB.
    Accessories: Sound Organization turntable shelf, Mondo racks, Pangea Audio Vulcan rack, Pi Audio Group Über BUSS, Monster HTS2000 power conditioner, Kinetronics anti-static brush, Pro-Ject VC-S record cleaner, Spin Clean record cleaner.
    Headphones: Schiit Valhalla amp, Burson Conductor Virtuoso Amp, Meze Audio 99 Classic and 99 Neo, Beyerdynamic DT770Pro 600 ohm, DT770 Studio 80 ohm, 1More Triple Driver Over Ear, 1More Triple Driver IEM

  • #2
    Are their albums in your collection that you listen to mostly because they have great sound, even if the music is uninteresting? That is, if they were mere average recordings you probably wouldn’t ever listen to them?
    Mainly no. There are one or two I use to check the system setup with. Otherwise life is too short to spend time listening to uninvolving music

    By the same token, are there any albums in your collection that are mediocre at best from a sound quality standpoint, but you love the music so you listen to them anyway?
    That covers quite a bit if the real estate on my most played shelf.

    As your system has improved over the years, have you found a change with either of the two categories?
    No

    Do you tend to focus on better sounding albums only or does improving your system allow you get the best out of the mediocre recording too?
    Mixed bag. I search for recordings of things I want but do not currently have, for better sounding copies or reissues of things I already have, or new music that hits the right spot. System improvements are made to make everything sound better.

    I’ve tried to word this carefully, as I’m not trying to spark controversy or tell anyone they are right or wrong. Just curious
    De nada. If we all agreed or liked the same stuff there wouldn't be anything to discuss. Boring.

    Comment


    • #3
      Actually, your answer pretty much goes along with what I would have posted if I had been asked this question.
      I do remember meeting someone many years ago (late 1980s) who admitted each time they upgraded their system they got rid of more LPs that no longer "good enough." When I heard his system, his record collection amounted mostly of records from HP recommended list, or releases from various audiophile labels. He wouldn't even let me play anything I brought with me, as he felt none of it would really allow me to hear how good his system was. I had to make an excuse to leave rather quickly.
      Steve Lefkowicz
      Senior Associate Editor at Positive Feedback
      -
      Analog 1: Linn LP12 (MOSE/Hercules II), Ittok, Dynavector 10X5 MK.II Low, iPhono2/iPowerX; Analog 2: Pro-Ject RPM-1 Carbon, Talisman S, iFi iPhono.
      Digital: Samsung 300E5C notebook, JRiver Media Center 28, Tidal HiFi, Qobuz Studio), iFi NEO iDSD, iFi iUSB3, iPurifier2, Audioquest Jitterbug.
      Electronics: DIY passive line-stage, Antique Sound Labs MG-SI15DT-S, Burson Timekeeper Virtuoso
      Speakers: Tekton Lore, Magneplaner .7
      Interconnects: Morrow Audio MA1, Vermouth Audio Black Pearl, Audioquest Evergreen
      Speaker cables: Morrow Audio SP4, Vermouth Audio Red Velvet, Audioquest Type 5
      Digital cables: Aural Symphonics USB, iFi Gemini twin-head USB.
      Accessories: Sound Organization turntable shelf, Mondo racks, Pangea Audio Vulcan rack, Pi Audio Group Über BUSS, Monster HTS2000 power conditioner, Kinetronics anti-static brush, Pro-Ject VC-S record cleaner, Spin Clean record cleaner.
      Headphones: Schiit Valhalla amp, Burson Conductor Virtuoso Amp, Meze Audio 99 Classic and 99 Neo, Beyerdynamic DT770Pro 600 ohm, DT770 Studio 80 ohm, 1More Triple Driver Over Ear, 1More Triple Driver IEM

      Comment


      • #4
        Every session I have a few tracks in mind then I just get carried away. Maybe this bass line reminds me of that or this drummer is playing here he also played on this, so on and so forth. As such recording quality is not really part of the thought process. That said there's some music, in my case mainly 80's pop and new wave, that being mastered for the era of compact cassette sound pretty nasty. Typically I'll play these in the car or on the beach but rarely in my main system unless it's requested.

        Since recording quality does vary wildly I do take some liberties in making my main system just that little bit more forgiving. Sins of omission if you will. A bit of a shelf on the top and bottom end mainly so the mids can come out a little bit more balanced in the case of the 80s stuff but not so much that I have to suffer through giant singer syndrome when say, a good vocal album is played.

        I used to have a basic TT with an MM cart for the 80s albums. This made the albums much more listenable. Unfortunately I ran of rack space when we moved so that is no longer an option. I might mount an MM on a second arm, I just need to pick a good MM cart. On the computer I just use some basic EQ on the nasty stuff.

        I guess you can say I don't like throwing the baby out with the bath water.

        Comment

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