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  • Smoke and Mirrors

    Composer/Piece LP Smoke and Mirrors/Tape Smoke and Mirrors:
    Vanish/Tape
    Dorman/Udacrep Akubrad x x
    Schissi/Juego de Relojes x x
    Tywoniuk/Vanish x x
    Tywoniuk/Happenstance x
    Ravel/Sonatine x x
    Harrison/Canticles x
    Reich/Najoya Marimbas x
    Toch/Geographical Fugue x
    Vinao/Book of Grooves x
    Two of my favorite recordings on tape are Yarlung Records' Smoke and Mirrors (That I gave a PF Product of Year to a couple of years ago) and the followup tape Smoke and Mirrors Vanish.

    Until this weekend I thought that these two tapes were the product of different recording recording sessions. Then the 45 rpm LP release Smoke and Mirrors arrived this weekend.

    Just a little back history. First, 10-inch reels hold at 15 ips ~32 minutes of music. Second, current reel-to-reel releases come as either a) one or b) two reels (with single reels of course being cheaper). In the case of two reels--say a reissue of an old recording--quite a bit of space up to 10 or so minutes might be wasted. In the case of a single reel, the company often wants to maximize the music and keep costs down and uses the whole time available. Take the IPI or Yarlung releases for instance.

    Jump ahead to the present. I had always thought that the first Smoke and Mirrors tape contained selected excerpts from the LP. And Vanish was a totally separate recording. So the only way to hear all the music was to buy the LP.

    Imagine my surprise when I found that not all the songs from the first tape were on the first LP. Then I pulled out the second tape and to my surprise found it too contained some of the songs from LP. So I decided to chart all the songs on the LP and two tapes and it appears that all the music was recorded at one session. In addition, the tapes contain all the music on the LP save for one song. Plus the tapes contain two more songs that aren't represented on the LP.

    Oh and I highly recommend the LP if you don't have a tape machine. Mastered by Bernie Grundman, the playing and music is absolutely top notch. Unusual music. My only complaints are that the 45 rpm is only one album, not a double release and two, the surfaces could be a little better. Certainly the surfaces are no where as quiet as a QRP release.
    Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
    Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
    ________________________________________

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    -cj 40th Anniversary ART300 monoblock amplifiers
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    -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
    -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
    -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
    -Lyra Atlas SL, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
    -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
    -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Allnic cables, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, MG Audio, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies Power Cords
    -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

  • #2
    what is the running time of the single 12" 45 rpm album?

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    • #3
      As a minor note, traditionally a 10" reel of tape holds about 30 minutes of music. Recently due to the generosity of modern tape manufacturers one can squeeze up to 33 minutes on one reel.
      JLH

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      • #4
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        So had a bit of time to compare the 45 rpm record to the tape. Remember that I am a hard grader and it's extremely high praise if I say something is 70% of the 15 ips tape.

        Basically I mark it down because the album is 1) a high frequency cartridge tracking torture test that only tape is going to do properly and 2) the LP doesn't have the dynamics or relaxed, effortless sound of the tape. And there's a little less air, harmonics and focus. That said, if you don't have a tape deck, buy the record. Wonderful low end, soundstaging and really unusual music. Like the tape, the album gives you an in the room experience.

        One comment about the pressing quality and a pet peeve. The record isn't 12-inches and the outer ring clamps just slips down and won't secure the record to the patter. I hate that and there's no excuse except lousy Q/C at the pressing plant. The only information given about where the album was pressed is Made in Germany (Pallas?).
        Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
        Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
        ________________________________________

        -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
        -cj 40th Anniversary ART300 monoblock amplifiers
        -Merrill Audio Elemente 116 monoblock amplifiers
        -cj GAT preamplifier Series 2 preamplifier
        -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
        -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
        -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
        -Lyra Atlas SL, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
        -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
        -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Allnic cables, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, MG Audio, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies Power Cords
        -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by jonathanhorwich View Post
          As a minor note, traditionally a 10" reel of tape holds about 30 minutes of music. Recently due to the generosity of modern tape manufacturers one can squeeze up to 33 minutes on one reel.
          I thought 2500' was the traditional length of a 10" reel of 1.5 ml tape? That was always the length when I used to buy them in the '70's.
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          • #6
            Right, 2500' = 33.33 mins at 15 ips. Some tape formulations, especially older AGFA PER 528 and the like were only 2400', or 32 mins.
            TAPE: Studer A807, A810; Revox B77 MkII; Tascam BR-20; Technics RS-1700; Pioneer RT-707, RT-909
            VINYL: Pioneer PL-50LII/Benz LP-S MR/ModWright PH 9.0; Denon DP59-L/Dynavector 20xH
            DIGITAL: Bryston SP-3, MacMini > Oppo Sonica/Pioneer N-50
            SPEAKERS: B&W Nautilus 800, Pioneer DSS-9
            AMPS: Cary SLP-05/Sunfire Signature 600, Pioneer SX-1980

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            • rbbert
              rbbert commented
              Editing a comment
              So what did Jonathan mean by his post, which was the question I was asking?

            • Skylab
              Skylab commented
              Editing a comment
              Don't ask me!!! But Jonathan knows more about tape than either of us do, times about 1000.

          • #7
            I happened to find that Bob sent me a copy of Smoke and Mirrors Vanish on CD.

            It has several other new cuts not found on either of the 15 ips tape or LP including:

            Rachmaninov: Vespers I and VI

            Applebaum: Catfish

            Takemitsu: From Me Flows What You Call Time with Gerald Schwartz and The Colburn Orchestra.

            Seems one has to get the hi-Rez downloads to get the complete recording? Anyone get the DSD download?
            Myles B. Astor, PhD, Administrator
            Senior Editor, Positive-Feedback.com
            ________________________________________

            -Magico S5 Mk.2 speakers with SPod feet
            -cj 40th Anniversary ART300 monoblock amplifiers
            -Merrill Audio Elemente 116 monoblock amplifiers
            -cj GAT preamplifier Series 2 preamplifier
            -Doshi V3.0 phonostage
            -VPI Vanquish direct-drive turntable
            -VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy dual pivot tonearm, VPI 12-inch 3D Fat Boy gimballed and SAT LM-12 arm
            -Lyra Atlas SL, Fuuga, vdh Colibri Master Signature, MOFI Master Tracker, Sumiko Songbird cartridges
            -Technics RS1506 with Flux Magnetic heads, Doshi V3.0 tape stage (balanced)
            -Assorted cables including Transparent XL Gen. 5, Allnic cables, Skogrand, Viero, Kubala-Sosna, MG Audio, Audience Au24SX, Genesis Advanced Technologies Power Cords
            -Accessories including Stillpoint Aperture panels, Cathedral Sound panels, Furutech NCF Nano AC receptacles; Silver Circle Tchaik 6 PLC, Symposium ISIS and SRA Craz racks, Audiodharma Cable Cooker, Symposium Ultra and assorted SRA platforms.

            Comment


            • #8
              This is the playlist from the high resolution file which can be streamed on Qobuz

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