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Hi Kenny,

 

If those original UK pressings were made from tapes anything like what I was given to use, the highs weren't sliced off - they never made it to the tape. If that is the case, I'd be more inclined to think subsequent masterings with more highs had their treble boosted, rather than the original having had it cut.

 

As I've written elsewhere, it was all too common at the time in certain quarters of the recording world to believe "the VU meters don't matter". One well-known producer said it to me in as many words. (!) Based on the audible evidence, I quickly came to feel otherwise: the VU meters are your *friends* and they're doing they're best to try and help you. ;-}

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

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Hi Kenny,

 

If those original UK pressings were made from tapes anything like what I was given to use, the highs weren't sliced off - they never made it to the tape. If that is the case, I'd be more inclined to think subsequent masterings with more highs had their treble boosted, rather than the original having had it cut.

 

As I've written elsewhere, it was all too common at the time in certain quarters of the recording world to believe "the VU meters don't matter". One well-known producer said it to me in as many words. (!) Based on the audible evidence, I quickly came to feel otherwise: the VU meters are your *friends* and they're doing they're best to try and help you. ;-}

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

 

 

Hi Barry,

 

Like others have said, it's great to have access to the thoughts of a pro on these matters; thank you!

 

It seems incredible that at the recording sessions for a major act like Yes something like this might happen ( treble response being cut off). Don't they listen to what they put on tape afterwards?

 

Cheers,

 

Bogdan

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If those original UK pressings were made from tapes anything like what I was given to use, the highs weren't sliced off - they never made it to the tape. If that is the case, I'd be more inclined to think subsequent masterings with more highs had their treble boosted, rather than the original having had it cut.

 

Thanks for providing your perspective on this Barry. Much appreciated!!

 

Who makes the ultimate call as to how much the highs should be boosted with respect to the reissues? Was that left up to your discretion for the Yes material you mastered?

 

And in terms of the more profound bass on the MoFi reissue, was this likely also the result of MoFi boosting the bass? Or might it be that MoFi is just passing on what's there on the tape whereas the bass was dialed back on original LP?

 

I recall reading an interview with Yes where it was mentioned that Chris Squire often pushed to have the dials turned up so that his bass was more prominent on their recordings than was the norm at the time. This was in reference to their second album in particular, though I imagine he might have kept that pressure up.

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Hi Kenny,

 

Thanks for providing your perspective on this Barry. Much appreciated!!

 

Who makes the ultimate call as to how much the highs should be boosted with respect to the reissues? Was that left up to your discretion for the Yes material you mastered?

 

And in terms of the more profound bass on the MoFi reissue, was this likely also the result of MoFi boosting the bass? Or might it be that MoFi is just passing on what's there on the tape whereas the bass was dialed back on original LP?

 

I recall reading an interview with Yes where it was mentioned that Chris Squire often pushed to have the dials turned up so that his bass was more prominent on their recordings than was the norm at the time. This was in reference to their second album in particular, though I imagine he might have kept that pressure up.

 

Who makes the call will vary from project to project and from mastering to mastering.

On most of the projects I've mastered, including all the CDs I mastered while at Atlantic, it has been just me.

(There *was* one post-Atlantic incidence where the producer said to me "You can't put on enough treble for me to say there is too much." !! Happily, I didn't need to test him on that project as we were both pleased with the final product -- perhaps surprisingly given that statement, the mixes were quite nice and natural sounding.)

 

Most of the time, a mastering engineer will be selected because the producer/artist/A&R person or label knows and likes what they've heard before. With this in mind, more often than nont, they will tend to let the mastering engineer make the calls. There are exceptions.

 

I can't speak to the MoFi as I haven't heard that version. If they used the same sources I was given and there is noticeably more bass on the MoFi (*after* levels have been precisely matched), I would think it had been boosted in that mastering. I can't speak for the vinyl mastering either but I *can* say that I did not cut any bass at all for the CD master I created.

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

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Hi Bogdan,

 

Hi Barry,

 

Like others have said, it's great to have access to the thoughts of a pro on these matters; thank you!

 

It seems incredible that at the recording sessions for a major act like Yes something like this might happen ( treble response being cut off). Don't they listen to what they put on tape afterwards?

 

Cheers,

 

Bogdan

 

Unfortunately, I find myself asking that last question (and others like it) about way too many records of music I love.

("Didn't they notice the clipping?!?", "I wonder how xxxxx [the drummer] felt about how distorted his drums sound.", "What made them, after listening to *that*, say 'okay, wrap it up, we're going home'?" etc.)

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

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I can't speak to the MoFi as I haven't heard that version. If they used the same sources I was given and there is noticeably more bass on the MoFi (*after* levels have been precisely matched), I would think it had been boosted in that mastering.

 

No offend, Barry, but as I know the first one who use the original master tape was Joe Gastwirt on his 1994 release (correct me if I am wrong). So, I would say, that the MoFi is a different source than yours.

Albert Einstein: Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.

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Hi Chriss,

 

No offend, Barry, but as I know the first one who use the original master tape was Joe Gastwirt on his 1994 release (correct me if I am wrong). So, I would say, that the MoFi is a different source than yours.

 

No offense taken.

At the time, I was told the originals were lost. If that was true and if some other tapes have resurfaced since I was at Atlantic, it is certainly possible Joe indeed got to use the originals. Since I wasn't present, I can't say one way or the other. I only know what Atlantic had in its possession during the many years I was there. Perhaps something has changed in the interim.

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

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With a maximum peak at -2.38, I'm wondering if that is actually from the CD master I created.

It is *possible* insomuch as peak readings in those days were arrived at by staring at the meters on the Sony 1630 A-D converters for the duration of the program. (They did have a peak hold feature but no finer than 1 dB increments.)

The reason I question it is that in those days, I always made sure the max peak used all the "real estate" on the meters, i.e. the highest LED below the "overload" was lit.

 

The replication facility (i.e., "pressing plant") *should not* change anything. I just find it odd the max peak isn't higher than this. Still, with all that said, -2.38 is still using all the *digital* "real estate". (Anything with max peak at -6.02 or greater is using that top bit.)

 

To some folks, a recording that has its original dynamic range 100% intact (i.e., no peak limiting or any other form of compression) is going to sound "low" in level. In my opinion, if all the digital real estate is being used and the dynamics left intact, it would be the other versions that are *loud*, not this one being "low".

 

Further, if the source is the same and the one with the -2.38 peak contains the full dynamics of that source, the only way to create a version that is more than 2.38 dB louder would be to limit the dynamic range (or allow "over"s, which would effectively be the same thing). Again, this assumes the same source. It is possible *another* source, with less dynamic range, could be used without further compression to create a louder version. (It is also possible that a very "hot" analog source, if not brought down in level for analog playback, could engender compression in the playback cards of the analog deck - along with an increase in harmonic distortion.)

 

As it was a quarter century ago, I can't say for sure with regard to the level. Another possibility is that after I'd left Atlantic, someone there made a clone of the CD master to send to a new replication facility and inadvertently did not have the level for the copy set to 0. (The fader on the Sony DAE-1100E editor, used during the copying process, might have been loose. Once again, I wasn't there so I don't know but it *is* within the realm of possibility. I've always paid a lot of attention to the max peak level when mastering. This is why I'm a but suspicious of the -2.38 peak.

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

 

Left Right

Min Sample Value: -23258 -22490

Max Sample Value: 22672 24908

Peak Amplitude: -2.92 dB -2.34 dB

Possibly Clipped: 0 0

DC Offset: -.452 -.367

Minimum RMS Power: -53.55 dB -52.57 dB

Maximum RMS Power: -13.66 dB -15.3 dB

Average RMS Power: -20.83 dB -21.86 dB

Total RMS Power: -19.96 dB -21.23 dB

Actual Bit Depth: 16 Bits 16 Bits

 

 

Using RMS Window of 50 ms

 

This is what I got, feeding Adobe Audition with SD-19131-2 Starship Trooper.

Very dynamic recording!

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Values from the MFSL (Track 3 Starship Trooper)

 

Links Rechts

Spitzenamplitude: -0,09 dB -0,58 dB

Echte Spitzenamplitude: -0,09 dBTP -0,52 dBTP

Max. Messwert: 31376 29553

Min. Messwert: -32417 -30651

Möglicherweise geclippte Samples: 0 0

RMS-Amplitude insgesamt: -12,54 dB -13,53 dB

Maximale RMS-Amplitude: -4,99 dB -6,17 dB

Minimale RMS-Amplitude: -80,13 dB -76,71 dB

Durchschnittliche RMS-Amplitude: -17,03 dB -15,84 dB

DC-Offset: -0,02 % -0,03 %

Gemessene Bittiefe: 16 16

Dynamikbereich: 75,14 dB 70,54 dB

Verwendeter Dynamikbereich: 67,10 dB 62,70 dB

Lautstärke: -10,26 dB -9,92 dB

Wahrgenommene Lautstärke: -8,38 dB -8,44 dB

ITU-R BS.1770-2 Lautstärke: -10,57 LUFS

 

HDTracks Download

 

Kanal1 Kanal2

Spitzenamplitude: -0,96 dB 0,00 dB

Echte Spitzenamplitude: -0,96 dBTP 0,02 dBTP

Max. Messwert: 29338,23 32760,77

Min. Messwert: -27872,68 -32744,00

Möglicherweise geclippte Samples: 0 0

RMS-Amplitude insgesamt: -16,21 dB -15,94 dB

Maximale RMS-Amplitude: -8,65 dB -9,23 dB

Minimale RMS-Amplitude: -92,99 dB -93,28 dB

Durchschnittliche RMS-Amplitude: -20,46 dB -17,94 dB

DC-Offset: 0,00 % 0,00 %

Gemessene Bittiefe: 24 24

Dynamikbereich: 84,34 dB 84,04 dB

Verwendeter Dynamikbereich: 65,00 dB 56,40 dB

Lautstärke: -13,82 dB -12,30 dB

Wahrgenommene Lautstärke: -12,03 dB -11,29 dB

ITU-R BS.1770-2 Lautstärke: -13,36 LUFS

 

So, once again, my ears were right, the MFSL sounds compressed and IS compressed (I believe Rob LoVerde that he has make no compression on it, maybe it was his tape were the compression is on)

Albert Einstein: Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.

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It is Barry's remastering.

 

From Barry, above:

 

At the time, I was told the originals were lost. If that was true and if some other tapes have resurfaced since I was at Atlantic, it is certainly possible Joe indeed got to use the originals. Since I wasn't present, I can't say one way or the other. I only know what Atlantic had in its possession during the many years I was there. Perhaps something has changed in the interim.

 

So actually we don't know that for sure. It could have been, or it could be from another tape, as Barry also mentions above. As he says, it's been a long time since he was there, and he doesn't know what tapes they have access to now and are using.

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Understood.

Peak levels, according to EAC:

\01 - Yours Is No Disgrace.wav

Peak level 78.4 %

 

02 - Clap.wav

Peak level 55.3 %

 

03 - Starship Trooper- a. Life Seeker - b. Disillusion - c. Würm.wav

Peak level 76.0 %

 

04 - I've Seen All Good People- a. Your Move - b. All Good People.wav

Peak level 81.3 %

 

05 - A Venture.wav

Peak level 75.9 %

 

06 - Perpetual Change.wav

Peak level 92.1 %

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Yes. That old Atlantic was cut way too low. Typical of the era and equipment.

 

 

Could be low because this is just one track from an album. There may well be a higher peak on another track. Back in those days, ME's didn't normalize every track to 0, like they often do today.

 

edit : and I see that there is, from post #40 -- Perpetual Change is the track that set the 'peak value' on that CD version. 92% of fullscale , which I think equates to about -0.7 dBFS. So it wasn't cut way too low, it was just cut the way LPs used to be: only one 'peak' on an album.

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Hi Fred,

 

Understood.

Peak levels, according to EAC:

\01 - Yours Is No Disgrace.wav

Peak level 78.4 %

 

02 - Clap.wav

Peak level 55.3 %

 

03 - Starship Trooper- a. Life Seeker - b. Disillusion - c. Würm.wav

Peak level 76.0 %

 

04 - I've Seen All Good People- a. Your Move - b. All Good People.wav

Peak level 81.3 %

 

05 - A Venture.wav

Peak level 75.9 %

 

06 - Perpetual Change.wav

Peak level 92.1 %

 

Is this still the Atlantic you believe could be mine?

If so, the 92.1 on the last band would translate to ~-0.4 dBFS (or slightly higher) which would be more in line with what I'd expect on a CD master I created.

 

Then, I wonder if the graphic in post #10 is the whole album (which I took it to be) or less than the whole album.

If it is the whole album, it is clearly different (i.e., lower in level) than what you are describing.

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

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Then, I wonder if the graphic in post #10 is the whole album (which I took it to be) or less than the whole album.

 

No, this is track 3, as stated on my post 10:

 

Waveform 1 shows Starship Trooper

Albert Einstein: Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former.

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Hi Chriss,

 

No, this is track 3, as stated on my post 10:

 

Doh! My mistake. (I read that too.... "How quickly they forget" ;~}

 

With Fred's readings of the whole album, I'm no longer questioning whether it is from the master I did.

 

To be clear, for a minute there, I thought the -2.38 reading was for the whole album. As long as there is a peak *somewhere* on the album that is reaching closer to 0 dBFS, it would not be unusual --in my work-- for a song that does not get as loud to have a lower reading. I master albums as whole units and not by the song. Doing the latter (e.g., making all the songs peak close to 0) can make the quieter songs sound *louder* than the louder songs.

 

As an aside: In the early days of CD, the "common knowledge" was to try and maximize resolution by ensuring the loudest peak(s) reached 0 DBFS, without of course, going over that. So, it is common for many CDs from that era to have max peaks at 0. (Then again, the meters on the old A-D converters did not resolve finer increments than 1 dB. By the end of the '80s, we started seeing computer-centered "workstations" that did allow for finer level control.)

 

Nowadays, most engineers I know understand that a little more "headroom" is required because of "intersample peaks" -- a reconstructed analog signal containing peaks that are higher than the samples on either side of the peak. With most material, I won't let the level exceed -0.3 dBFS. Sometimes, a bit more headroom is needed.

 

Thank you for the clarification.

 

Best regards,

Barry

Soundkeeper Recordings

Barry Diament Audio

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I haven't heard the HDTracks version, but I do have the MFSL gold cd and an original UK plum vinyl of The Yes Album. My findings were similar to yours chriss71, I was really surprised (going by memory I don't think I've heard compression in other gold/SACDs from the new MFSL) to find the MFSL CD sounded much more compressed than the UK vinyl. Dynamic contrasts were blunted on the MFSL reducing the impact of the soft to loud transitions.

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  • 5 years later...

I love the Wilson remix (I love all of his remixes, in fact), and I prefer it to the MoFi. I do find the MoFi too bassy, a bit bloated-sounding. I totally believe LoVerde that it's just the sound of the master tape, and I don't blame him at all for the sound - in fact I think the MoFi is very good. In fact, I think most MoFi masterings are very good.

 

But unless you are a hardcore Yes fan who's heard the album 100s of times and would find it disturbing to hear any tiny variation from the original mix, then I'd say go for the Wilson - his remixes are true to the originals (albeit of course by definition they cannot be 100% identical-sounding) and the sonics are second to none.

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