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pdvm

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  1. You should. About organs in concert halls: there's a wide variety of power and quality out there. In some halls, the interplay between the organ and the acoustics just don't work as they should. I live in Amsterdam and visit the Concertgebouw regularly, which happens to have a good concert organ. A few months ago, I attended this very concert: The opening statement by the organ blew me away. Seats right in the middle of the hall. The final peroration at the end of the 'Chorus Mysticus' was the loudest thing I ever heard, bordering on painful. An enormous, overwhelming visceral thrill. The whole concert was one of the most intense musical experiences of my life. Of course, the recorded sound doesn't do it justice, but you can imagine the sub bass...
  2. I'm not arguing in favor of redistribution of wealth. People are free to do what they want with their money. I just hope some of the folks that buy 12000 dollar speaker cables will support the classical music scene, so it will stay affordable, and thus alive. (Seriously, what will happen when the current popularity of Mahler/Bruckner/Shostakovich wanes, and even those names won't be sufficient any more to ensure a full house? Where is your audience in 20-30 years, if you don't draw young people to the concert hall now? Off topic, but I think about that stuff a lot)
  3. Talking about value: my HD580's are still going strong, after twenty-one years.
  4. At a certain point, all those extra thousands of dollars would be better spent on supporting local symphony orchestras and the like. Buy some actual 'life-like' experiences with all that buck. With 12000 dollar, instead of buying 10 foot speaker cables, you could buy the best seats in the house for 50 concerts. Make a few school classes happy. Or you could just donate it and keep one part time orchestra member at work. Whatever.
  5. Traditional Hungarian songs ("Magyar nota") with some gipsy waltzes and Romanian music thrown in for good measure. Played by two (now sadly dead) legendary gypsy violin players who can make their violins sound like violas. (In a good way!) Full album:
  6. It's cramped. Very, very cramped.
  7. Also, I'd like to report that version 3.5.7 crashes a lot, usually when I press the stop button or try to play another album when something is already playing. My macbook is a retina 13inch late 2013 with 4GB RAM running macOS 10.14.4, no other programs save Safari running simultaneously with A+.
  8. I like the sound of 3.5, but I don't like the new interface at all. Look at all the real estate in the older version. You could actually read the whole title of a track. Now look at the new thing. How much less information is visible. Why does everything need to take so much space? Why is there a 'cover flow' thingy right where track information should be? Why are the 'hidden' play/favorite/more options buttons taking up almost a quarter of the remaining horizontal space, where, again, track information should be visible? What's playing? I guess there's a 1-by-1 inch box in the lower left corner where, if you concentrate for 30 seconds, you can decipher the full title of a track, as it scrolls by. Why are all the play/next/stop buttons a different size? I love Audirvana, but I don't like this Spotify-like UI at all. Please, Damien, don't turn it into Spotify.
  9. Seriously, if you're into passionate and unabashedly romantic piano concertos: listen to this Atterberg concerto.
  10. Oh boy. What a discovery this piano concerto is.
  11. Fantastic version of the Bach violin concertos. The opening allegro of the reconstructed BWV 1052 is almost scary.
  12. I know. I hear new, great sounding recordings all the time. Most of them are recordings of mediocre performances unfortunately. So when somebody comes along and does things genuinely different or with the utmost attention to detail (like Currentzis), it's sad to have to write him off because of an unlistenable recording. I mean, I much rather listen to Barbirolli's Mahler 6 where you can hear the microphone distortion at the loudest climaxes, then hear this mess, where every time it gets exciting the engineer yanks the volume down while you can hear there's no distortion and you know there's ample dynamic range to capture the full impact of the passage.
  13. Which is weird, because I found the following on the facebook page of AudioNote, who work with Damien Quintard, the recording engineer for Currentzis: " [...] Then there's the equipment...*groan* Sadly, the word 'pro' kind of makes one think of comparing a family saloon to a luxury / performance car of some sort, but, alas, with recording equipment at least, it's more like comparing a family saloon to a delivery van. And, bear in mind, as audiophiles, most of us don't have the audio equivalent of a Ford Focus in our listening room, more like BMW and up. The truth is, your favourite musicians will most likely have had their art passed through 50 cheap 'jellybean' op amps (NE5532 usually) and been converted from analogue to digital, and back, at least four times, before it reaches your silver-wired SE triodes. [...] I personally think it's a miracle there's anything left to listen to after the beating it's been subjected to, and, by improving that signal chain, we can experience better music at home. Luckily, we aren't without allies in the music industry, and Mssr Quintard is one of those... At some time, we're hoping to spread our tentacles into the 'pro' audio business, with the prime aim of trying to improve the quality of recorded music, firstly for our own label, and secondly by way of introducing recording and production electronics. Damien is an award (Emmy) winning producer who records and engineers for our friend Maestro Currentzis. [...] We examined limitations in current recording interfaces (Damien uses one of the best - DAD) and mastering equipment, in particular compressor / limiters, as well as sample rate conversion, dithering, the entire process in fact, as well as discussing analogue - and mono analogue - recordings of Edna. What I think we really learned was, and it's going to take time to implement, is that we need to work on every aspect of the chain, and develop a kind of process or system, together with the equipment. Only that way can we achieve our shared aim. I guess the first product is going to be a microphone preamp. You can see the beautiful setting of Damien's studio, on Boulevard des Batignolles in Paris, together with his DAW (Digital Audio Workstation) and analogue equipment. He uses an Audio Note Meishu and E speakers for monitoring, as you can see in the photographs. Damien found this combination to be more revealing than anything else he's used. Damien uses several different types of microphones for recording, but his favourite is the RCA ribbon, pictured. I have the somewhat daunting task of creating a quiet preamp to work with it. He also uses AEA, Coles and others. He's particularly fond of his early Chandler Curve bender (EQ) and Zener Limiter". Thanks to Andy for sharing his pictures and comments on the trip, and to Damien QD for generally being an incredible person we are honoured to work with." Maybe it's Sony that puts the final master through the mangler? I just can't believe it's 2018 and classical recordings (still? again?) get maimed in this way....
  14. THANK YOU. All reviews I've read mention the 'stellar' recording quality / 'demonstration class' etcetera. Does nobody hears the heavy compression? I bought the high-res download of his Tchaikovsky 6 and put it through Audacity. Look at it. This is the 3d movement. I suspect the Mahler will look the same if you analyze the files. The final bang of the finale is so flatly compressed that you can actually hear a crescendo after the bang (because of the relative dynamics), instead of a decrescendo. It's completely bizarre. The thing is, in so many top performances of both the Mahler and Tchaikovsky, but mainly Mahler, some passages have emotional impact because just at the point where you think it can't get more intense, it does. You need realistic relative dynamics in a recording for those moments to register. In these recordings, all bets are off as to what the relative dynamics were in the original performance, because on top of the endless highlighting the dynamics in every climax are gone. Because I liked the Tchaikovsky performance so much I actually went through the trouble to restore the dynamics in the climaxes manually. Fairly easy to do as only two hysterical moments in the first movement needed a higher volume plateau, the main tutti's in the latter half of the third movement and the two main drawn-out crescendo's in the finale. But the Mahler is un-salvageable.
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