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Nirvana Nevermind Remaster 24/96

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Wow, this was unexpected. Nirvana's Nevermind 2011 remaster is available from hdtracks at 24/96.


I was literally on the way to purchase the new deluxe edition of the CD. Good thing I saw this first.








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Hi Chris,


I am writing hoping not to sound preachy or disrespectful, but I'd also be wary of promoting any hd tracks downloads at mo. There still appears to be a lot of problems/dissatisfied customers with hd tracks, and although I am a big fan of Nevermind, I too would be wary of purchasing it.


I do realise that you are trying to be/have to be positive and that this positivity is to help persuade others to buy and produce more genuine hi res downloads to the benefit of us all, but please be careful. I would not want such an important site to us all to suffer as a result.


Again, if this comes across as sanctimonious then please forgive me.





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Hi Ryan - Thanks for the comments. Your points are well taken. It's easy to accept the opinions of others when written as well as yours. I've attached some screenshots of a track below. Looks goo so far.


I am copying the tracks to an Aurender server right now. Sound quality judgements to come.




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Here are the Dynamic range scores of the 24/96 download.







Analyzed folder: /Nirvana/Nevermind (Remastered)


DR Peak RMS Filename



DR6 -0.09 dB -7.81 dB 01 Smells Like Teen Spirit.wav

DR7 -0.08 dB -7.77 dB 02 In Bloom.wav

DR7 -0.09 dB -8.37 dB 03 Come As You Are.wav

DR7 -0.08 dB -7.80 dB 04 Breed.wav

DR7 -0.09 dB -8.98 dB 05 Lithium.wav

DR9 -0.10 dB -10.31 dB 06 Polly.wav

DR6 -0.09 dB -7.97 dB 07 Territorial Pissings.wav

DR7 -0.09 dB -7.73 dB 08 Drain You.wav

DR7 -0.09 dB -7.81 dB 09 Lounge Act.wav

DR7 -0.09 dB -7.63 dB 10 Stay Away.wav

DR6 -0.05 dB -7.48 dB 11 On A Plain.wav

DR8 -0.10 dB -9.98 dB 12 Something In The Way.wav

DR7 -0.08 dB -8.64 dB 13 Endless, Nameless.wav



Number of files: 13

Official DR value: DR7





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Showing numbers similar to Chris': http://www.dr.loudness-war.info/details.php?id=11326


Their evaluation: "Maybe not as butchered as Pearl Jam's 'Ten' remaster, but still, if you've got the original, stick to it!"


The MoFi CD is insanely expensive. Looks like the more practical option is the 1991 original. Disappointing - I was looking forward to picking up the new CD, or the HDTracks version if sonics merited.


One never knows, do one? - Fats Waller

The fairest thing we can experience is the mysterious. It is the fundamental emotion which stands at the cradle of true art and true science. - Einstein

Computer, Audirvana -> optical Ethernet to Fitlet3 -> Fibbr Alpha Optical USB -> iFi NEO iDSD DAC -> Apollon Audio 1ET400A Mini (Purifi based) -> Vandersteen 3A Signature.

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Since 9/24, I've purchased about $600 worth of HDtracks 24/96...all of which I'm totally delighted with. But what a bummer to see a 20% off deal on the 27th !!! like 72 hours after I bought them at full price.


I sent an email to Norm Chesky asking if I can be "grandfathered" for the 20% off sale...whereupon, I'd purchase the equivalent (and more) in more 24/96 downloads.


Hoping that the spirit of delighting customers holds true on this particular deal.











Mac Mini 2011, 60 gb SSD, 8gb ram; PureMusic & BitPerfect; Wavelength Audio Cosecant V3 DAC; Wireworld Silver Starlight usb interconnect; McIntosh C2200 preamp; pair of McIntosh MC252 SS amps run as monoblocks; vintage MC240 Tube amp and 50th Anniversary MC275 tube amps; Krell LAT-2\'s on Sound Anchors; JL Audio F112 subwoofer; Nirvana SX ltd interconnects and speaker cables and power cords; PS Audio P5

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This is another example of the smashed dynamic range crashing of the so called HiRes versions of an original CD version. Here is the DR of the original CD, that has dimensions of more dynamic than the so called HiRes version. I hate that. This behavior kills the future of HiRes.




Analyzed folder: E:AudioNirvana - 1991 - Nevermind


DR Peak RMS Filename



DR11 -0.20 dB -12.83 dB 01 - Smells Like Teen Spirit.wav

DR11 -0.20 dB -12.23 dB 02 - In Bloom.wav

DR12 -0.20 dB -13.62 dB 03 - Come As You Are.wav

DR11 -0.20 dB -12.72 dB 04 - Breed.wav

DR11 -0.20 dB -12.64 dB 05 - Lithium.wav

DR10 -1.40 dB -13.59 dB 06 - Polly.wav

DR12 -0.20 dB -12.93 dB 07 - Territorial Pissings.wav

DR12 -0.20 dB -12.74 dB 08 - Drain You.wav

DR12 -0.72 dB -13.27 dB 09 - Lounge Act.wav

DR12 -0.20 dB -12.61 dB 10 - Stay Away.wav

DR12 -0.20 dB -13.44 dB 11 - On A Plain.wav

DR13 -0.20 dB -17.30 dB 12 - Something In The Way.wav



Number of files: 12

Official DR value: DR12







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MFSL rulez in terms of SQ B-)


The download is "money for nothing". A stereo system is so expensive, so who cares about these few dollars of wasted money? ;-)

We are the guys who have the money, they want our money, and they get it - live is going on ...



P.S.: In the evening I will rip an original 1991 CD and compare all three side by side.


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You guys have raised an interesting question for me that I've wondered about for a while.

I have many albums that I have loved of a genre most people call alternative or punk. Groups like Nirvana, Jesus and Mary Chain, White Stripes, Smashing Pumpkins, Ramones, My Bloddy Valentine, Velvet Underground etc. I listened to them on LP and cassette in 80's 90's on LoFi equipment, poor quality car stereos and boom boxes (remember them?)and they sounded great! Their sound often comprised guitar feedback, fuzzy sounds and a wall of sound!


I am not sure these groups ever intended their albums to be released in Hi Res....am I wrong?


Does anyone like me who listened to those records when they were released still get a buzz when listening now in Hi Res on audiophile equipment?? Or is the magic broken?





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Do you have the redbook from the early 90's to compare it to for DR?

If the original CD was only DR 9-12, then this probably doesn't sound to bad.


My experience is that DR 7-9 is okay. Not what I'd like, but it doesn't give me a headache after 2 minutes.


Main listening (small home office):

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Secondary Path: Server with Audiolense RC>RPi4 or analog>Cayin iDAC6 MKII (tube mode) (XLR)>Kii Three .

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All absolute statements about audio are false :)

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Is it safe to say a vinyl version of an album (old original or new remastered) won't be a victim of the loudness wars (compressed and clipped) ?


System1: iMac (Pure Music) -> Weiss AFI1 -> Audio Research DAC8 -> Leben CS600 / Merlin TSM-mmi + RelB3 -or- Eddie Current Balancing Act / Audeze LCD-2 headphones[br]System2: Macbook (Pure Music) -> Legato -> MHDT Havana -> Leben RS-100u ->Sophia Electric 300B monoblocks -> ZuAudio Soul Superfly

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has expired..so I used Sound Forge 10 Normalize function to measure the peaks and RMS of the Redbook file.


For Smells like Teen spirit, the 44.1/16 FLAC original release 1991 has peaks of -1.4, RMS of 11.2, so the Dynamic Range is 9.8. The 96/24 HDTracks is 7.81-0.09 = 7.72, so it's squashed by 2.6 db.


Now there are ways to measure RMS with goodness knows how many weighting factors, but on these raw figures, you're better off with the MOFI (if you can find one) or the Redbook CD for dynamics and toss the HDTracks version in the trash.


Here's a picture enclosed.


Same goes for Joni Mitchell's "Both sides now", also compressed by 3db or so.



AS Profile Equipment List        Say NO to MQA

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The current 20th Anniversary Redbook and HDTracks releases are identical masters. I compared to a friend and the HDTracks matches:



Analyzed folder: /Volumes/Media/iTunes/iTunes Music/Music/Nirvana/Nevermind (Deluxe Edition)


DR Peak RMS Filename



DR6 over -7.81 dB 1-01 Smells Like Teen Spirit.m4a

DR7 over -7.82 dB 1-02 In Bloom.m4a

DR7 over -8.37 dB 1-03 Come As Your Are.m4a

DR7 over -7.80 dB 1-04 Breed.m4a

DR7 over -8.98 dB 1-05 Lithium.m4a

DR9 -0.08 dB -10.31 dB 1-06 Polly.m4a

DR7 -0.02 dB -7.97 dB 1-07 Territorial Pissings.m4a

DR7 over -7.73 dB 1-08 Drain You.m4a

DR7 over -7.81 dB 1-09 Lounge Act.m4a

DR7 -0.02 dB -7.63 dB 1-10 Stay Away.m4a

DR7 over -7.48 dB 1-11 On A Plain.m4a

DR7 over -9.22 dB 1-12 Something In The Way.m4a


Comparing the two, there is a positive effect of not being frequency limited by sampling rate. It adds just a touch of perceived dynamics, especially on cymbal crashes and snare hits. I perceive a slight amount of bass dynamic or precision improvement.


I don't think anyone expected much fidelity from Nevermind, given the recording chain and such. On the other hand, In Utero could benefit from a lightly mastered hi-res release. Albini's recording and Grohl's drumming was a match made in heaven.


iMac/Wireworld Ultraviolet/Arcam rDAC/Blue Jeans LC-1/Audioengine A5

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