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Sting newest album - 5th & 9th dynamics


mkrzych
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Unbelievable. Another victim after Metallica newest album! What the heck!!!!!!!!!!! DR7 for such record in 24/96 resolution and mastered by Bob Ludwig - I am done with this crap.

 

sting.png

 

Oh, I like peak levels!

 

foobar2000 1.3.4 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1

log date: 2016-11-11 20:08:49

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Analyzed: Sting & The Last Bandoleros / 57th & 9th [Deluxe Edition] (1)

Sting / 57th & 9th [Deluxe Edition] (2-13)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

DR Peak RMS Duration Track

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DR5 0.00 dB -6.39 dB 2:54 13-Next To You (live at Rockwood Music Hall)

DR6 0.00 dB -6.68 dB 3:31 01-I Can't Stop Thinking About You

DR6 0.00 dB -8.81 dB 4:17 02-50,000

DR6 0.00 dB -7.72 dB 3:48 03-Down, Down, Down

DR6 0.00 dB -7.44 dB 3:14 04-One Fine Day

DR7 0.00 dB -8.04 dB 3:06 05-Pretty Young Soldier

DR6 0.00 dB -6.85 dB 3:32 06-Petrol Head

DR11 0.00 dB -14.23 dB 3:18 07-Heading South On The Great North Road

DR7 0.00 dB -10.43 dB 4:34 08-If You Can't Love Me

DR7 0.00 dB -8.99 dB 4:56 09-Inshallah

DR9 0.00 dB -11.69 dB 2:50 10-The Empty Chair

DR6 0.00 dB -6.92 dB 3:38 11-I Can't Stop Thinking About You (LA version)

DR7 0.00 dB -8.62 dB 4:58 12-Inshallah (Berlin Sessions version)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Number of tracks: 13

Official DR value: DR7

 

Samplerate: 96000 Hz

Channels: 2

Bits per sample: 24

Bitrate: 2990 kbps

Codec: FLAC

================================================================================

--

Krzysztof Maj

http://mkrzych.wordpress.com/

"Music is the highest form of art. It is also the most noble. It is human emotion, captured, crystallised, encased… and then passed on to others." - By Ken Ishiwata

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One of the best reasons for streaming services. I've stopped buying any of these till I find out they aren't highly volume compressed. With streaming I can listen without regret about the purchase.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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Unbelievable. Another victim after Metallica newest album! What the heck!!!!!!!!!!! DR7 for such record in 24/96 resolution and mastered by Bob Ludwig - I am done with this crap.

 

[ATTACH=CONFIG]31051[/ATTACH]

 

Oh, I like peak levels!

 

foobar2000 1.3.4 / Dynamic Range Meter 1.1.1

log date: 2016-11-11 20:08:49

 

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Analyzed: Sting & The Last Bandoleros / 57th & 9th [Deluxe Edition] (1)

Sting / 57th & 9th [Deluxe Edition] (2-13)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

DR Peak RMS Duration Track

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

DR5 0.00 dB -6.39 dB 2:54 13-Next To You (live at Rockwood Music Hall)

DR6 0.00 dB -6.68 dB 3:31 01-I Can't Stop Thinking About You

DR6 0.00 dB -8.81 dB 4:17 02-50,000

DR6 0.00 dB -7.72 dB 3:48 03-Down, Down, Down

DR6 0.00 dB -7.44 dB 3:14 04-One Fine Day

DR7 0.00 dB -8.04 dB 3:06 05-Pretty Young Soldier

DR6 0.00 dB -6.85 dB 3:32 06-Petrol Head

DR11 0.00 dB -14.23 dB 3:18 07-Heading South On The Great North Road

DR7 0.00 dB -10.43 dB 4:34 08-If You Can't Love Me

DR7 0.00 dB -8.99 dB 4:56 09-Inshallah

DR9 0.00 dB -11.69 dB 2:50 10-The Empty Chair

DR6 0.00 dB -6.92 dB 3:38 11-I Can't Stop Thinking About You (LA version)

DR7 0.00 dB -8.62 dB 4:58 12-Inshallah (Berlin Sessions version)

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Number of tracks: 13

Official DR value: DR7

 

Samplerate: 96000 Hz

Channels: 2

Bits per sample: 24

Bitrate: 2990 kbps

Codec: FLAC

================================================================================

 

And Bob Ludwig (who I greatly respect) should be ashamed!

 

JC

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And Bob Ludwig (who I greatly respect) should be ashamed!

 

JC

 

Don't be positive BL is responsible. He is responsible for the mastering - he's not the final decision maker about the sound of the album. Quite possible the level of VC had nothing to do with him. Not impossible that the producer, a record company exec, or even Sting dictated that the mastering be done that way.

 

For lots of albums, the people involved in the playing and artistry end of the album are dictated conditions, or decisions are made without their input, or even after they have finished their work.

 

Mastering is basically about balancing tracks that are already mixed: making already mixed tracks sound like an album. But in some cases the mastering engineer may receive tracks that have been compressed at the time of the mix, or he/she may have a dictate made to them by the record company, etc about VC. It's also possible for a "master" to be compressed after it is delivered.

 

Also note this BL quote cited in the Wikipedia article on "Loudness Wars":

In late 2008, mastering engineer Bob Ludwig offered three versions of the Guns N' Roses album Chinese Democracy for approval to co-producers Axl Rose and Caram Costanzo. They selected the one with the least compression. Ludwig wrote, "I was floored when I heard they decided to go with my full dynamics version and the loudness-for-loudness-sake versions be damned."[17] Ludwig said the "fan and press backlash against the recent heavily compressed recordings finally set the context for someone to take a stand and return to putting music and dynamics above sheer level."[17]

 

Sounds like BL was tasked with mastering 3 VC versions. Someone else chose which one went out as the finished product. If you think someone like BL should be "ashamed" for making such a master, maybe you should think that like you, he has to make a living. Not every client is interested in sound approved by the community of posters at CA. Some actually choose for it to be highly volume compressed, as hard as it may be for some people here to believe.

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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Sounds like BL was tasked with mastering 3 VC versions. Someone else chose which one went out as the finished product. If you think someone like BL should be "ashamed" for making such a master, maybe you should think that like you, he has to make a living. Not every client is interested in sound approved by the community of posters at CA. Some actually choose for it to be highly volume compressed, as hard as it may be for some people here to believe.

 

What would be great would be for us audiophiles to have the option to buy a less volume-compressed version. I for one know only one album that can be bought in its standard highly compressed version (on CD) and with good dynamic range (in high res): Muse's the 2nd Law. Actually, my ideal world for pop-rock would be have the possibility to buy a bundle coupling a volume compressed version (for my car, my headphones in public transport and my bluetooth speaker) and a dynamic one for my main system at home.

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What would be great would be for us audiophiles to have the option to buy a less volume-compressed version. I for one know only one album that can be bought in its standard highly compressed version (on CD) and with good dynamic range (in high res): Muse's the 2nd Law. Actually, my ideal world for pop-rock would be have the possibility to buy a bundle coupling a volume compressed version (for my car, my headphones in public transport and my bluetooth speaker) and a dynamic one for my main system at home.

 

Agree. A few others have done this on a few albums: Radiohead and Paul McCartney come to mind; but unfortunately that practice seems to have ended.

 

Quite possible that the record companies simply saw that hi-res sales are not that great, and purely to save a few bucks decided to make only one volume compressed master. Why make two when it is a trivial matter to make a volume compressed hi-res master and then downsample it to Redbook and mp3?

Main listening (small home office):

Main setup: Surge protector +_iFi  AC iPurifiers >Isol-8 Mini sub Axis Power Conditioning+Isolation>QuietPC Low Noise Server>Roon (Audiolense DRC)>Stack Audio Link II>Kii Control>Kii Three >GIK Room Treatments.

Secondary Listening: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Matrix Element i Streamer/DAC (XLR)+Schiit Freya>Kii Three .

Bedroom: SBTouch to Cambridge Soundworks Desktop Setup.
Living Room/Kitchen: RPi 3B+ running RoPieee to a pair of Morel Hogtalare. 

All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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  • 2 months later...
Unbelievable. Another victim after Metallica newest album! What the heck!!!!!!!!!!! DR7 for such record in 24/96 resolution and mastered by Bob Ludwig - I am done with this crap.

 

And yet it actually sounds pretty decent. Compression is an artistic decision - it's like guitar distortion or over-saturated or highly stylised colours in a lot of movies - you either like it or not but if it serves an artistic purpose and is used appropriately it can not be inherently good or bad. I would definitely not dismiss an album based on dynamic range numbers as long as it is not unlistenable and this one is definitely not.

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And yet it actually sounds pretty decent. Compression is an artistic decision - it's like guitar distortion or over-saturated or highly stylised colours in a lot of movies - you either like it or not but if it serves an artistic purpose and is used appropriately it can not be inherently good or bad. I would definitely not dismiss an album based on dynamic range numbers as long as it is not unlistenable and this one is definitely not.

 

I ask the same question about Bowie's Blackstar. Did he intend / select the compressed master because it was his dying album? It is very darkly powerful the way it is on CD and Hi-res. Has anyone heard / read about the vinyl versions of either of these two releases?

 

Another recent one that surprised me was the DR of Jeff Beck's Loudhailer. It got some great reviews and has a similar DR rating.

 

 

Sent from my iPad using Computer Audiophile

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I really don't know about Bowie's last album and whether he was physically able to supervise everything but I have not even the slightest doubt that Sting's album sounds exactly like he wanted it to - to the last bit.

 

I think it's wrong to expect the musicians to have the same approach to sound as audiophiles. To audiophiles the best sound is generally the one that is most natural, while to musicians sounds is a tool that conveys certain emotion and triggers certain response. That is the reason why audiophile recordings exist where the sound comes first and the sound engineer is the star while the performance itself is often quite mediocre.

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I wonder if ANY thought what so ever is put into the long term survivability of a crushed and compressed album when these Artists and the people they surround themselves with are deciding on what the final copy for circulation will sound like?

 

Unfortunately I haven't yet found a way to see into the future but if I were a betting man my money would go in the pile that says NO ONE will be going out of their their way 10-15yrs from now to seek out and pick up Stings or any artists albums that were released in this day and age like those who give a damn do today looking for all the same artists older releases that were not CRUSHED/COMPRESSED.

 

Of all people Sting would have been one of the last people I would have expected to do such thing considering how excellent all his older stuff sounded. Though with that said, I did notice a trend in this direction for him for most of the stuff he released in his later years which all sounds like crap.

 

Uggh!

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Compression is an artistic decision - it's like guitar distortion or over-saturated or highly stylised colours in a lot of movies - you either like it or not but if it serves an artistic purpose and is used appropriately it can not be inherently good or bad.

 

I don't think it is an artistic decision as much as an attempt to get the music sounding good to the majority of potential buyers. Those lower DR numbers make crappy earbuds sound better on the subway and make cheap dashboard speakers come to life. My wife is perfectly happy listening to her playlists straight off her iphone speaker (cringe), and 12+ DR tracks just don't work in those scenarios. Unfortunately the audiophiles are a much small percentage of buyers so we have the overcompressed end product.

 

Agreed, I would think it would be relatively effortless for a label to offer higher DR recordings as an simple download purchase to keep us happy.

Synology DS1515+ >  PS Audio P10 > Innuos Zenith Mk II running Roon Core > IsoRegen/LPS-1 > Lyngdorf TDAI 2170 > Tekton Double Impact Speakers

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Agreed, I would think it would be relatively effortless for a label to offer higher DR recordings as an simple download purchase to keep us happy.

 

I was just listening to Nathan East's new album on CD - NE is a top musician and so are most of the others on the album. He is also part of Fourplay that has been played to death on HiFi Shows. The album is mastered by Bernie Grundman and sounds great. There is nothing on this album that suggests it is aimed at the mp3/earbuds crowd, it is produced by top professionals and I am pretty sure it sounds exactly as they want it to. It is also issued on Yamaha's own label - hardly a tyrannic major or a label that doesn't care about sound quality. Some tracks have a DR of 5.

 

And the music is crap, BTW.

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  • 2 weeks later...
Agreed, I would think it would be relatively effortless for a label to offer higher DR recordings as an simple download purchase to keep us happy.

 

Concerning this possibility to offer different masterings, a DR-compressed CD for the mass market and a less compressed download for audiophiles, I recently bought on HDTracks a 24/48 download of the live jazz album Peter Bernstein/Larry Goldings/Bill Stewart: Live at Smalls

 

Bernstein/Goldings/Stewart: Live at Smalls

 

I had the CD, which sounds very fine and has DR11. Many of the SmallsLIVE relesse are rather compressed (DR7-9), but since the CD was OK, I thought it safe to upgrade it with the 24/48 download from HDtracks.

 

But the hi-rez download was DR8 :(

 

I have checked hundreds of jazz releases and reissues for DR compression, and this was the first time that on a new release, the dynamic compression was worse on the hi-rez download than on the CD. Usually it's identical, as nobody bothers to create different masterings.

Claude

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