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Lighthouse
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Joined: Nov 3 2005 - 2:07pm
Loudness Wars

In reference to John Atkinsons reply to letters about the loudness wars, where JA stated he first mentioned the issue in 1999.

This problem has been going on since the mid 80's. If you compare the 1983 CP35 japanase jazz releases with the 1986 CP32 releases, the later are louder, compressed and have been eq'd to bring out the upper mid range.

Same thing with all remasters, which started in the mid 80's. This is the old frog in warming water phenominon - people are complaining today, because weve reached near boiling point.

Dave

Elk
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Re: Loudness Wars

No one here will disagree that overly aggressive compression and limiting was widely used in popular music recordings prior to 1999. However, the general consensus is that recordings up through 1993 were not hyper-compressed.

The Japanese pressings are an entirely different matter. The CP35 recordings were always more expensive than the CP32 (the "35" and "32" catalog designations were an indication of pricing). The CP35 recordings were made from analog masters. The CP32 series were made from first generation copies, often digital. As we all know, early digital was not pretty.

Lighthouse
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Re: Loudness Wars

Elk,

The point is, the process of increased volume and compression started way before 1999.

I only used the CP35s as an example. The CP35 discs were released in 1983, when all(?) Japanese CD's were 3500Y or above. The CP32 discs were released in 1986/7 when the price of CDs had dropped to 3200Y.

If you look at most Japanese releases of important discs, you will find a 3500y followed by a 3200y followed by a 2800y or 2500y. In every case they get louder and more compressed.

This is not just in the Japanese market. The first European Pink Floyd discs on the Harvest label (made in Japan ~ 1984) were made from the vinyl masters. The band had them pulled (so the story goes) and they were re-released in 1986 from the first gen tapes. The 1986 discs are cleaner & 'tighter' but also significantly louder and more compressed than the 1984 discs which have become collector's items. The Floyd discs were remastered again in 1994 and were given the treatment even more.

I have hundreds of discs, where I have multiple versions, and the story is always the same. Later = louder + compression + EQ.

I agree that to many people the issue started to become a problem in the late 90's early 00's, but for some of us the problem started long before.

Postscript:

Some of the early japanese floyd discs are fetching big money:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=330215774453#description

Elk
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Re: Loudness Wars

I got it the first time.

I can repeat my response, but I don't think it will matter.

KBK
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Re: Loudness Wars


Quote:

Some of the early japanese floyd discs are fetching big money:
http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=330215774453#description

?

I have the original Japanese vinyl, original Canadian Harvest vinyl, and the orignal Mo-Fi vinyl. CD = yuck.

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