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Modern Vinyl "Masters" vs. CD--My Experience, It Really IS About the Music
Engelsstaub
post Dec 5 2012, 18:59
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Due to some recent past experiences in other threads wherein some members (who plainly state their honest dislike of vinyl) claim that modern LPs are just as dynamically clipped as their CD-counterparts, I'd like to take an opportunity to illustrate that this is IME not the case. I've heard it stated more than once that "vinyl is not about the music..it's about the ritual.) This is seemingly just plain-old lazy bias. It can easily be forgiven in that these posters make it pretty obvious that they don't purchase vinyl, let alone compare modern releases to their CD-counterparts.

Here are screenshots from needledrops I've done of some of my favorite recent records. All but one were released in the past two years. Warrel Dane's "Praises to the War Machine" was released in 2008. (As a fun side-note, the vinyl LP came with the CD and was limited to 1,000 copies worldwide.)

I would like to note that I did not cherry-pick these examples. I only have about three more needledrops that I also have a CD copy or iTunes Matched version of. I can upload those as well. It should also be noted that all of these examples are on the heavier-side of the metal genre and probably are far more dense in sound than most other examples from other genres.

I've brought each vinyl recording up to 0.1 under 0 dB for easier comparison. None of the peaks are "pops" or any artifacts associated with the LP medium. Only one had a "pop" that hit the ceiling and I corrected it before applying gain.


Borknagar - "The Earthling" from "Urd" (2012)

LP



iTunes Matched AAC




In Flames - "Ropes" from "Sounds of a Playground Fading" (2011)

LP



CD



(This album is an egregious example of how bad they can make a modern CD sound through destructive normalization.)


Saint Vitus - "Let Them Fall" from "Lillie: F-65" (2012)

LP



CD



(Yes, really. It sounds worse than it looks IME.)


Warrel Dane - "Brother" from "Praises to the War Machine" (2008)

LP



CD




Septicflesh - "Oceans of Grey" from "The Great Mass" (2011)

LP



CD




[continued in next post due to apparent image constraints]


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The Loudness War is over. Now it's a hopeless occupation.
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extrabigmehdi
post Dec 6 2012, 03:56
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Well, just by looking at the graphs I wouldn't be able to tell which sounds better.
The loudness compression difference doesn't look significant.
And obviously some LP have some limiter applied to them such like "Oceans of Grey" from "The Great Mass" . I'd be more interested by LP versions if there was more significant differences on the dynamic range.
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Engelsstaub
post Dec 6 2012, 04:04
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QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Dec 5 2012, 20:56) *
Well, just by looking at the graphs I wouldn't be able to tell which sounds better.
The loudness compression difference doesn't look significant.
And obviously some LP have some limiter applied to them such like "Oceans of Grey" from "The Great Mass" . I'd be more interested by LP versions if there was more significant differences on the dynamic range.


Did you listen to the samples I uploaded? You don't have to base your judgement on the graphs.

The feedback I've gotten thus far from those who've listened is that the difference is significant. If you don't feel it's significant enough, as I or others do, you're certainly free to continue not caring about the LPs.

I'm not even saying that the difference should outweigh someone's legitimate reasons for preferring digital. I stand by my assertions that it is indeed significant. Some much more so than others, but still a notable difference in nearly every case.

Edited for clarity.

This post has been edited by Engelsstaub: Dec 6 2012, 04:06


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extrabigmehdi
post Dec 6 2012, 04:43
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QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 6 2012, 03:04) *
Did you listen to the samples I uploaded? You don't have to base your judgement on the graphs.


Ok, just listened to the samples, and the LP does indeed sound better.
However I've looked at the waveforme , thanks to "wavefoorm seekbar" component,
and the squashing of dynamic range is more obvious than on the graph you published.

Sample : "dirty window of opportunity" , top is LP.



I'm thinking that the graph you published are not very representative of the difference,
maybe you should show left/right channel graph separately, instead of mid channel, or zoom on problematic parts.

This post has been edited by extrabigmehdi: Dec 6 2012, 04:45
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Engelsstaub
post Dec 6 2012, 06:35
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QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Dec 5 2012, 21:43) *
Ok, just listened to the samples, and the LP does indeed sound better.
However I've looked at the waveforme , thanks to "wavefoorm seekbar" component,
and the squashing of dynamic range is more obvious than on the graph you published.

...


Thanks for your time and input. I appreciate it. I'm not so knowledgable about graphs and meaningful information portrayed therein, so your graphs would very likely be far more useful than mine. smile.gif

@mjb2006: I uploaded some samples as you requested here.

(Quicktime X has a trim command that is super-easy to use. For some reason I always forget about it because I never have cause to use it.)

Edit: I did not apply gain this time to the LP version, so in this instance it was not brought up to -0.1 dB like all of the previous examples. Or like the example illustrated in the graph.

This post has been edited by Engelsstaub: Dec 6 2012, 06:43


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Posts in this topic
- Engelsstaub   Modern Vinyl "Masters" vs. CD--My Experience   Dec 5 2012, 18:59
- - Engelsstaub   Dimmu Borgir - "Born Treacherous" from ...   Dec 5 2012, 19:00
|- - Nessuno   Never actually made measurement of the sort, but m...   Dec 5 2012, 19:24
|- - StephenPG   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Dec 5 2012, 20:24) Never...   Dec 5 2012, 22:14
|- - krabapple   QUOTE (StephenPG @ Dec 5 2012, 16:14) QUO...   Dec 5 2012, 23:24
|- - Nessuno   QUOTE (krabapple @ Dec 5 2012, 23:24) QUO...   Dec 6 2012, 10:26
|- - krabapple   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Dec 6 2012, 04:26) Yes, ...   Dec 7 2012, 17:42
|- - Nessuno   QUOTE (krabapple @ Dec 7 2012, 17:42) Why...   Dec 8 2012, 10:46
- - Engelsstaub   Probably not I think people who produce classical...   Dec 5 2012, 19:29
|- - Porcus   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 5 2012, 19:29) I...   Dec 5 2012, 20:05
|- - rgtb   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 5 2012, 19:29) M...   Dec 5 2012, 20:25
- - [JAZ]   @Engelsstaub: While I agree that probably more car...   Dec 5 2012, 20:08
- - Engelsstaub   @ Porcus: I'm going to try to get a few sample...   Dec 5 2012, 20:22
- - Engelsstaub   I think it should be a bit more clear that we...   Dec 5 2012, 20:59
|- - 2Bdecided   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 5 2012, 19:59) I...   Dec 6 2012, 11:28
- - almostmitch   I like what I see especially after just taking th...   Dec 5 2012, 21:32
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (almostmitch @ Dec 5 2012, 14:32) I...   Dec 5 2012, 21:41
- - [JAZ]   I'll wait for the samples, to see what I can g...   Dec 5 2012, 21:45
- - Triza   I left the rock scene primarily because of bad mas...   Dec 5 2012, 21:50
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (Triza @ Dec 5 2012, 14:50) I left ...   Dec 5 2012, 21:59
- - almostmitch   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 5 2012, 15:59) A...   Dec 5 2012, 22:22
- - [JAZ]   Mmm... after a few tests, I cannot get what I want...   Dec 5 2012, 22:56
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE ([JAZ] @ Dec 5 2012, 15:56)...   Dec 6 2012, 00:46
- - krabapple   You can't turned a hard limited (as in a limit...   Dec 5 2012, 23:13
- - krabapple   And please, before you conclude that vinyl 'so...   Dec 5 2012, 23:27
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (krabapple @ Dec 5 2012, 16:27) And...   Dec 6 2012, 00:41
- - mjb2006   Can you upload a clip of one of the AAC files and ...   Dec 6 2012, 01:57
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (mjb2006 @ Dec 5 2012, 18:57) Can y...   Dec 6 2012, 02:27
|- - mjb2006   No, I mean, start with the AAC file and "appl...   Dec 6 2012, 02:44
- - extrabigmehdi   Well, just by looking at the graphs I wouldn...   Dec 6 2012, 03:56
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Dec 5 2012, 20:56)...   Dec 6 2012, 04:04
|- - extrabigmehdi   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 6 2012, 03:04) D...   Dec 6 2012, 04:43
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (extrabigmehdi @ Dec 5 2012, 21:43)...   Dec 6 2012, 06:35
- - Engelsstaub   I've no software on the Macintosh platform tha...   Dec 6 2012, 03:56
- - hlloyge   I've replaygained Ropes sample and played them...   Dec 6 2012, 09:25
- - [JAZ]   QUOTE (krabapple @ Dec 5 2012, 23:13) You...   Dec 6 2012, 12:06
- - Kohlrabi   While I agree it is likely worthwhile to get into ...   Dec 6 2012, 13:33
|- - rgtb   QUOTE (Kohlrabi @ Dec 6 2012, 13:33) Are ...   Dec 6 2012, 13:58
||- - Nessuno   QUOTE (rgtb @ Dec 6 2012, 13:58) I don...   Dec 6 2012, 15:46
|- - DVDdoug   Most of my CDs don't "look" that bad...   Dec 6 2012, 20:36
- - almostmitch   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 5 2012, 18:41) @...   Dec 6 2012, 15:46
- - 2Bdecided   I've checked out "the earthling". Th...   Dec 6 2012, 17:45
- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (hlloyge @ Dec 6 2012, 02:25) I...   Dec 6 2012, 17:48
- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (Nessuno @ Dec 6 2012, 03:26) ... G...   Dec 6 2012, 17:56
- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (DVDdoug @ Dec 6 2012, 13:36) ...I...   Dec 6 2012, 20:56
- - mjb2006   Assuming the QuickTime trim function doesn't t...   Dec 7 2012, 11:20
|- - 2Bdecided   QUOTE (mjb2006 @ Dec 7 2012, 10:20) I wou...   Dec 10 2012, 14:00
- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (mjb2006 @ Dec 7 2012, 04:20) Assum...   Dec 7 2012, 16:31
- - mixminus1   My thoughts exactly. I'd be very surprised if...   Dec 7 2012, 19:20
- - mjb2006   I'm wondering if we should change the vinyl my...   Dec 7 2012, 22:07
- - greynol   OT regarding the wiki: I would strive to make the ...   Dec 7 2012, 22:44
|- - dhromed   In light of this thread, I de-sweep my earlier swe...   Dec 8 2012, 13:20
- - Engelsstaub   Agreed. My personal vote (assuming I even have one...   Dec 7 2012, 23:49
- - RonaldDumsfeld   Impressive and thought provoking thread. Thanks E...   Dec 8 2012, 01:47
- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (RonaldDumsfeld @ Dec 7 2012, 18:47...   Dec 8 2012, 17:12
|- - GeSomeone   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 8 2012, 17:12) I...   Dec 10 2012, 22:03
- - Engelsstaub   I had to go back nearly ten years (in pressing dat...   Dec 10 2012, 18:30
|- - Blueshirt   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Dec 10 2012, 18:30) ...   Dec 10 2012, 20:39
- - Gecko   I just had a quick listen to the "Heathen Thr...   Dec 10 2012, 20:11
- - greynol   BTW, just because a straight line in a waveform mi...   Dec 10 2012, 20:20
|- - WernerO   QUOTE (greynol @ Dec 10 2012, 21:20) BTW,...   Dec 11 2012, 09:04
- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (Gecko @ Dec 10 2012, 13:11) I just...   Dec 10 2012, 21:25
- - Engelsstaub   Well that's disappointing to hear. I'm gl...   Dec 10 2012, 23:20
- - Engelsstaub   I'm bumping in the interest of continued relev...   Jan 4 2013, 19:08
- - gnypp45   I haven't read this thread in detail, but I wo...   Jan 4 2013, 22:35
- - DVDdoug   QUOTE Indeed the crest factor of the allpass filte...   Jan 4 2013, 23:04
- - Engelsstaub   I'm not even sure what proof we still require ...   Jan 5 2013, 00:37
|- - rgtb   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Jan 5 2013, 00:37) I...   Jan 5 2013, 09:39
||- - Nessuno   QUOTE (rgtb @ Jan 5 2013, 09:39) given vi...   Jan 5 2013, 10:51
||- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (rgtb @ Jan 5 2013, 02:39) ... give...   Jan 5 2013, 12:01
|- - Kohlrabi   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Jan 5 2013, 00:37) I...   Jan 5 2013, 09:47
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (Kohlrabi @ Jan 5 2013, 02:47) ...I...   Jan 5 2013, 12:10
- - DVDdoug   QUOTE So I guess my question now is this: is the T...   Jan 5 2013, 01:34
- - hlloyge   I think that there is one mastering proces where t...   Jan 5 2013, 16:02
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (hlloyge @ Jan 5 2013, 09:02) I thi...   Jan 5 2013, 17:02
|- - GeSomeone   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Jan 5 2013, 17:02) [...   Jan 5 2013, 18:46
- - Engelsstaub   Yes, I don't doubt that that is quite possibly...   Jan 6 2013, 17:47
- - 2Bdecided   I don't have anything recent on both vinyl and...   Jan 7 2013, 15:46
- - Engelsstaub   Sounds like a good idea, David. I can easily figur...   Jan 7 2013, 18:21
|- - Kees de Visser   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Jan 7 2013, 18:21) D...   Jan 7 2013, 21:00
- - Engelsstaub   Thanks, Kees de Visser. Apparently iZotope RX2 do...   Jan 7 2013, 21:55
- - DVDdoug   QUOTE Does anyone know of a suitable all-pass filt...   Jan 7 2013, 23:02
- - Engelsstaub   Here is the DR value analysis of the CD (FLAC rip)...   Jan 9 2013, 00:02
|- - greynol   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Jan 8 2013, 15:02) D...   Jan 9 2013, 01:41
- - Engelsstaub   I'm struggling to believe that the LP, even t...   Jan 9 2013, 03:23
|- - 2Bdecided   Thank you for posting those results Engelsstaub. ...   Jan 9 2013, 11:07
- - greynol   Beats not knowing that such an effect exists.   Jan 9 2013, 04:16
- - Engelsstaub   Ah, ok. Thanks for the clarification. I know some...   Jan 9 2013, 16:33
- - Kohlrabi   QUOTE (Engelsstaub @ Jan 9 2013, 16:33) ....   Jan 9 2013, 16:58
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (Kohlrabi @ Jan 9 2013, 09:58) If y...   Jan 10 2013, 00:12
- - greynol   Remove the b.   Jan 10 2013, 00:16
- - Engelsstaub   Even better I think I'm going to give this...   Jan 10 2013, 00:31
- - 2Bdecided   Actually, I think it would be wonderful to have a ...   Jan 10 2013, 16:13
- - Engelsstaub   I'll try to do my part in the near future. May...   Jan 10 2013, 17:16
- - greynol   I want to revisit this discussion because I just p...   Jan 28 2013, 22:29
|- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (greynol @ Jan 28 2013, 15:29) ...i...   Jan 28 2013, 23:42
- - greynol   Just the last one. Again this is solely based on ...   Jan 28 2013, 23:50
- - 2Bdecided   This looks like one for the list of vinyl that bea...   Jan 29 2013, 12:03
- - Kohlrabi   QUOTE (2Bdecided @ Jan 29 2013, 12:03) Th...   Jan 29 2013, 16:41
- - Engelsstaub   QUOTE (Kohlrabi @ Jan 29 2013, 09:41) ......   Jan 29 2013, 23:35
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