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michael green
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the sony portable walkman

geoff

I can easily base my comment on the particular portables you use as your references to this. These units have one setting only. Why do you think the designers of them gave them EQ's to try to help out with the problems they faced. Why do you also think Nakamichi, Tascam, Studer and others spent so much money and time on the alignment of tape?

Again geoff if your going to join in these conversations it would be good to see your level of experience past dumping your CD Player for a portable sport sony cassette player. Of course your portables have alignment problems, in talking to Sony themselves they have told me and can tell you the same.

If your going to talk tape, before you jump up and shout at everyone maybe you should share your experiences, training and playback systems in which you base your comments on. Here's what I'm saying, if you expect a guy who has lived and breathed Nakamichi for 30 years to take you serious with you making statements based on a portable sony walkman cassette player be prepared to be challedged.

you saying "a post about nothing" face it is only a troll

you saying "I can't hear the difference between tape and CD" is again only trolling

If you wish for this or any thread to be productive share with us, and stop trolling us.

http://www.gennlab.com/alignment_cassettes.html

might I suggest a simple search on the topic http://www.bing.com/search?q=how+to+align+a+tape+deck&qs=n&form=QBRE&pq=how+to+align+a+tape+deck&sc=0-18&sp=-1&sk=&cvid=f3c841133e5a4571812c50c2bb99d527

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

geoffkait
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Audio Nervosa, anyone?

This is not supposed to be a thread for you to air your complaints, attack other members who happen to disagree with you and rant on and on about how great you and TuneLand are. This is a thread about cassettes. Try to keep from spewing your usual jibber jabber if you wish to keep anyone on board the Michael Green train which if you'll pardon me for saying so has become a little derailed of late. And try to refrain from trying to align yourslf with audiophiles quite so much as it doesn't become you.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

bierfeldt
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Donated

I donated most of my tapes to the town library. The only ones I kept were ones i don't have on other formats with one exception, the Seventh son of the Seventh Son where I started a string of posts that deteriorated into well....this. That being said, I did play a few tapes and they do sound good. Even with HX Pro, there is a hiss but it is only annoying at the beginning and end of songs or when listening to quiet moments in classical.

I don't have an issue with regular posters getting a little snippy with each other. A string of posts like this is exactly where people can feel free to get annoyed with each other. My problem is when a new poster comes in and has spent thousands of $$$ and people tell them he bought crap and they should sell it. That is what bothers me. Particularly when it is on a Stereophile reccomended component like the B&WS CM 5s. That is what needs to be stopped. It hurts the forum, it hurts the magazine and makes people not want to participate in this hobby.

michael green
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tape hiss & other stuff

I also wanted to talk about something else that gets brought up here. Geoff said "why don't CD's have the tape hiss", suggesting the CD's are not able to reproduce the air.

I think this is another reason why it's important to have someone-s on board who are both audiophile and pro engineer. The reason why CD's don't play much of the tape hiss is a result of the copies being made further up stream.

If someone has a Cassette tape displaying a fair amount of tape hiss this is because the Slave (mother) has been copied from a copy that may be a few generations from the original. Tape hiss and acoustical room air are two completely different sounds. Most tapes (unfortunately) are made from copies of copies of copies. Where a CD is usually two generations old and stored differently than tape, most Tapes are re-recorded from sources that may be a generation or two from the original, each generation adding more tape hiss. So when you see an audiophile saying how much they can hear the tape hiss, this is usually not the original tape hiss at all.

also

Anyone who doesn't understand what a soundstage is and should be doing needs to get on the wagon of recorded music cause the soundstage is everything.

copies of copies

A good recorder will playback as a recording with a big soundstage. If you take a copy of the master and listen to it, it will produce a smaller stage than the master. The more you move down the chain the smaller the stage gets and the more hiss and squeeze you have. CD's on the other hand being stored differently don't have the same tape distortions, but do need to be stored properly.

They're the same world in one sense in that they are both digital languages, but as soon as the analog comes into play the process of copying for all three tape vinyl and CD's take different physical turns.

In the long run (we're not there yet] going from analog or digital as a language to file should be the best of all worlds, once the computers improve. But at that point the playback system will need to be improved on as well. A file, is going to have more resolution on it "if" the file can stay legit through the copying process. With any analog languages, they will always be subjected to vinyl and tape variations, copies from copies and playback alignment issues, as I mentioned earlier.

As for my favorite in listening it would have to be a first generation copy from the master on one inch or a very good reel to reel. We're talking $10,000.00 units and up. At the level of consumer products, personally I don't like the big high end audio CDP's, mainly because most of them are dressed up basic designs. When I say I like CD's better than Tape or vinyl on a consumer level, yes I like the CD's better, but with very few players and playback systems.

You guys should take a look at my talks with some of the other high end audio designers on this issue, you will be surprised.

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

geoffkait
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Tape hiss

Michael wrote,

"I think this is another reason why it's important to have someone-s on board who are both audiophile and pro engineer. The reason why CD's don't play much of the tape hiss is a result of the copies being made further up stream."

Interesting. So it sounds like what you're saying is that the reason You don't hear tape hiss from the original tape machine that recorded the album on the CD is that the CD was made from lesser quality copies. Is that correct? Two questions, then. Why can't you hear the original master tape hiss even on recordings that were made from the original master tapes, you know, like Mobile Fidelity. Also, it sounds like, from your explanation, that not only tape hiss is missing from (many) CDs but a lot of other information, including air, is missing, no?

If what you are saying, that you only like CDs on certain equipment - I assume you mean YOUR hopped up low mass systems - wouldn't it be a fair statement that in fact you actually think that FOR THE REST OF THE WORLD CDs sound bad? So, after all your posturing and spinning around chasing your tail, you ACTUALLY AGREE WITH ME. We agree that CDs sound bad, except in certain specific limited cases, which, just to,jog your somewhat flakey memory, is WHAT I'VE BEEN SAYING ALL ALONG. See, I knew we'd get there eventually.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

bierfeldt
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Upstream copies

I get what you guys are saying about quality dropping as you get further removed from the master. Dredging up memories from my youth, I recall this.

I ended up buying all of my Black Sabbath cassettes at K-Mart in the late 80's/early 90's. They had these odd imports from Holland that were recorded from something much closer to the original masters at Dorcester Holdings. They sounded awesome. No pops, very little hiss. And they were very cheep. Black Sabbath had all sorts of copyright issues as they were bad business people and almost lost the rights to perform their own music, much less collect proper royalties or even control who could publish their work. Thus, these odd cassettes.

To listen to them compared to the Warner Brothers releases that my brother had was shocking. Whether it be on CD or Cassette. At the time, it seemed that those albums desperately needed remastering when in reality, they just needed to use copies closer to the original master. The exception of course was Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, that really needed remastering. I remember my brother being really annoyed about the whole thing.

And this just answered my question from another string why my new pressing of The Seventh Son of the Seventh Son sounds great while the others sound like crap. The limited edition I just bought was supposed to be from the original masters. The other editions, including the CD, must be from 9000th generation copies explaining why they sound horrid.

Interesting. I don't know if I would argue the superiority of cassettes but I would not claim that it is inherently inferior format any more.

michael green
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the recording side

Hi bierfeldt and guys

Yep, that's pretty accurate. The other side to the hobby is as interesting as the plackback side, to me equal at least. Because of this, I don't look at systems quite the same way this hobby does. There really aren't set in stone absolutes like this hobby assumes. part of the fun for me is being able to spot things because of being there and doing.

If we went on-line right now we would find as many sites about Studio Tape machines as high end audio components. All of these professional companies have their own sound and settings. In the recording world we mix and match and tune to specific not only levels of sound but flavors as well. This happens all the way down the chain to the consumer. On here I read how different playback sources are better than others, but it's really more involved than that. I know the mindset on high end audio forums talk about classes, but in reality that's not the case at all.

here's an example

When I make my studios they are used as playback referencing rooms. They're actually Playback Studios. Warner Brothers, Sony, BMG, A&M and lot of folks would come by and listen together to make certain choices, along with thousands of mastering houses. There's over 3000 studios in Nashville along. In all of these studios and mastering houses you can here certain flavors being made. All of these flavors get stored, and as companies wish to make copies or re-masters or re-issues a lot of different things come into play to get the final result. Let's say one year Sony wishes to make a 300,000 runs of Titanic. Two years later they find they need 100,000 more. Both of these may have the same recording number but 2 different issue numbers, and they "do" sound different. This goes on with every recording since the history of recording itself. In some ways it's like a hobby within a hobby itself.

here's the kicker

If we do go up and read up on all of this we are going to see that there is a ton of tuning going on. Mixing and matching and the customizing of machines to give certain sounds, or you may have a machine that has a better copy life (it can produce longer before needing alignment servicing). You really have to get involved to understand, but the nut shel is, all of these copies we purchase to perform at their best need to be adjusted to do so. Even though the recording industry has tried to make some EQ and limiting standards, every single piece of recording or playback or anything in the audio chain is either slighly or very out of tune.

It's not really like the recent audiophile world makes it look. We see things like 12+12=24 but in recording and the audio chain 12+12 does not come out to 24. Reason being is in recording 12 is not really 12, but a sum of variables that may get close but not right on. In recording there are millions of ways to look at 12 (a random number). In recording "analog" always converts 12 to something slighty different. Every condition change ends up making one signal a little different than the last even if they measure exactly the same. Copying is a good example. If we look at a past or present copy house you are not going to see one machine making all the copies, but several machines that all sound slightly or more than slightly different.

This is the part High End Audio some how has not got. High End Audio tries to put absolute labels on things that have no absolutes. As a result everybody's playback sound different from everyone else's. The hard core recording guys gets this as well as the extreme variable listener.

For some reason this part of the hobby has a hard time with the variables, but there's no way around them. We can't add a magic potion that fixes something because the something is not broken, it's just variable.

The outer edge of a vinyl sounds different from the inner, the end of a tape sounds different from the beginnig. Every component sounds different as it is played. Every room sounds different as it is stimulated. Music is about a moment and the one thing we can't do is change time.

Time and timbre are brothers and when we get this we can start looking at our systems as one not being better than the other but one being different than the other. And this hobby needs to get off of this brand kick and on to understanding the recording and audio chain itself. And most important, hobbyist need a course in what the audio code is and how it works.

If the audiophile came to the place of understanding all the variables, the hobby would completely change. Tape being better than vinyl, being better than CD is meaningless with out the understanding of how things work. It's like a bunch of opinions based on an extremely limited view.

Notice on here how some guys (including reviewers) come up and rattle off the sound of a brand? In music reality that's not a good thing in a hobby supposing to be so "revealing" of the original music. The fact that a brand name has a certain sound is proof that there needs to be vaiable tuning added to the mix. The recordings all sound different, the copies all sound different, the playback components all sound different, and the rooms all sound different, plus, our hearing is all different.

This is why to me when I see guys on a forum called "stereophile" ripping on sources, formats, and recordings or equipment price classes with no understanding of what is really going on, I question their capability and qualifications to make any recommendations about playing the music.

There are so many levels and layers to all of this, and the last thing a hobbyist or the hobby itself should be doing is acting like they are a teacher for something they haven't even studied past the consumer level.

A true audiophile is not a snob, troll or equipment collector. An audiophile is on a path of purity and understanding of music. While learning what they thought was great and maybe the answer last week is old news this week cause "going" deeper is an act of doing, and that act of doing is called "tuning".

sorry to be long winded again, but this post is what it means to be an audiophile

"I get what you guys are saying about quality dropping as you get further removed from the master. Dredging up memories from my youth, I recall this.

I ended up buying all of my Black Sabbath cassettes at K-Mart in the late 80's/early 90's. They had these odd imports from Holland that were recorded from something much closer to the original masters at Dorcester Holdings. They sounded awesome. No pops, very little hiss. And they were very cheep. Black Sabbath had all sorts of copyright issues as they were bad business people and almost lost the rights to perform their own music, much less collect proper royalties or even control who could publish their work. Thus, these odd cassettes.

To listen to them compared to the Warner Brothers releases that my brother had was shocking. Whether it be on CD or Cassette. At the time, it seemed that those albums desperately needed remastering when in reality, they just needed to use copies closer to the original master. The exception of course was Sabbath Bloody Sabbath, that really needed remastering. I remember my brother being really annoyed about the whole thing.

And this just answered my question from another string why my new pressing of The Seventh Son of the Seventh Son sounds great while the others sound like crap. The limited edition I just bought was supposed to be from the original masters. The other editions, including the CD, must be from 9000th generation copies explaining why they sound horrid.

Interesting. I don't know if I would argue the superiority of cassettes but I would not claim that it is inherently inferior format any more."

being an audiophile is about always being a part of that learning curve, It's all about the exploring of recording and playback

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

geoffkait
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Why does digtial sound like it's broken?

Michael wrote,

"The outer edge of a vinyl sounds different from the inner, the end of a tape sounds different from the beginnig. Every component sounds different as it is played. Every room sounds different as it is stimulated. Music is about a moment and the one thing we can't do is change time."

This is not rocket science. The reason the record sounds "different" as the stylus moves from the outer grooves to the inner grooves is simply because the tonearm geometry cannot be optimized for the entire record. The designer of tonearm geometry devices must decide one way or the other, optimize for the outer grooves or optimize for the inner grooves? Yes, we know every room sounds different. That is not exactly news. And we know WHY every room sounds different, too. "One thing we can't do is change time." Well, actually that's one thing I CAN do. At the appropriate time (heh heh) we can talk about changing time.

Rather than portray the entire CD issue as a Tuning issue, I suggest you get down off your high horse and let's examine the facts of the matter. Digital has it's own set of problems, most of which are independent or separate from those of analog. The reason that audio systems sound better when they are small and compact - like the portable systems I'm now using - is NOT because they have LOW MASS, even though it's true their mass is lower than a heavier system, doh! It's because many things that are BAD FOR THE SOUND are ELIMINATED. Rather than be hoodwinked into believing all of these things are NECESSARY for the BEST SOUND, think like me, analyze the system and try to figure out what can be ELIMINATED and what MUST BE SAVED. Don't think about cost, don't think about how it looks or what people might say, just think about the sound. Try to remove those blockages that have formed around your brain.

OK, first off, Large transformers and their vibration and large magnetic field. They're unnecessary so get riding them! Fuses that degrade the sound. Internal wiring of electronics that degrades the sound, primarily because half of it is installed backwards. The elimination of house AC power and resulting lower noise and distortion. Elimination of power cords and their associated problems. Elimination of speaker cables and their associated problems with noise and distortion. And elimination of speakers themselves, with their noise and distortion, you know, produced by internal wiring, fuses, magnetic field from the magnets. Not to mention the vibration speakers produce during play that smears the sound and distorts it.

And more to the point of CDs, the reason they sound BAD is not because they have some inherent problem getting close to the source although that might be an issue! it's because of ALL OF THE PROBLEMS IVE BEEN HARPING ON FOR LO THESE PAST SIX MONTHS. Let's review, shall we? First, CDs are out of round. This causes fluttering of the disc during play and yup, you guessed it, noise and distortion. The scattered background laser light fills up the entire CD transport and manages to, or actually can't help but, get into the photodetector and be detected as real signal. Vibration comes up from the floor and migrates into the CD transport where it interferes with the whole laser reading process. The CD motor itself, it's mechanical noise, interferes with the laser reading process. These are not TUNING ISSUES. They are physical and electrical issues that are amenable to fixing with TWEAKS. Wake up and smell the coffee! Notice I have not even broached the subject of Information Fields and how they degrade the sound, perhaps especially for digital.

He not busy being born is busy dying. - Old audiophile expression.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

bierfeldt
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Files

So, we condemn digital in general but lets separate CDs from files. If you have a FLAC file recorded from an analog of digital master, it should not be subject to the jitter issues and broader transport issues that you describe with CDs. Do you feel that it is digital totally or just CDs that are the problem?

geoffkait
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I've been ripped, zipped, flipped and dipped.
bierfeldt wrote:

So, we condemn digital in general but lets separate CDs from files. If you have a FLAC file recorded from an analog of digital master, it should not be subject to the jitter issues and broader transport issues that you describe with CDs. Do you feel that it is digital totally or just CDs that are the problem?

I do not burn rip or download files so I'm no expert on that particular subject. However I have it on good authority that the whole process of creating digital files is fraught with the same problems as playing CDs directly on the CD player. For example, when you rip a CD to a computer file the same issues with vibration, scattered laser light, out of round CDs, noise produced by transformers, etc, AFFECT THE OUTCOME of the rip just like they do when playing a CD. One type of rip that Might Possibly work is the READ UNTIL CORRECT thing. But even that is questionable since most so called experts would probably opine that ANY rip program will be OK since bits are bits and Reed Solomon Error Correction takes care of any problems that might arise during play. Which, by the way, is the same exact argument that so called experts use to explain why playing a CD on a CD player cannot have bad results, ye olde perfect sound forever argument. Now, having said all that if a FLAC file is created WITHOUT having to read a CD somewhere along the line, I.e., without the ANALOG optical process taking place, then maybe it has a chance of avoiding the pitfalls of burning and ripping I just mentioned.

Cheers,

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

michael green
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tuning

geoff said

"Rather than portray the entire CD issue as a Tuning issue"

The entire audio chain from start to finish is a Tuning issue. I think I'll stay on that high horse a while longer thank you :)

geoff said

"This causes fluttering of the disc during play and yup, you guessed it, noise and distortion."

Oh, and what does this noise and distortion sound like geoff?

And while your at it, can you describe for us what tape alignment distortion sounds like? How about tape bleed distortion? Or spool distortion. And one of the worst, pad pressure distortion?

I see with your Sony Portable Walkman Cassette Player you have become quite the audio expert.

geoff, have you ever listened to a 2" or 1" recorded master?

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

bierfeldt
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The Pono marketplace

Like 10% of the files available in the Pono marketplace are supposed to be recorded using a close to the original masters as they can get. These hi-res files may be better than average. It would be interesting to test.

michael green
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it's just beginning

Pono, is a good example of the new music movement. The thing about this hobby is we don't think about how young the industry really is and how much music is in and on the recording.

If you spend time reading me on here, you'll notice I talk mostly about the soundstage. The small frontal soundstage that became popular with the High End Audio audiophile is tiny compared to the real size of a recording. This is not what we had in the studio in the 70's and early 80's. Audio went from 3D to 2D and that 2D became the norm even in audiophile listening.

After we squeezed our systems to death, all the real emotion, body and "space" was gone. After generations of copies, and systems so massive squeezing the sound it was only a matter of time before innovation pushed it's way through with people saying enough is enough.

Over the next few years watch how far digital goes, and also watch how simple these playback systems become from the view point of size and build.

My view of high end audio is about all things being equal (balance), and making that equality based on "real size" and "real space" of the recording. This is why the general public is not going to move to the big mass systems in the future with speakers placed against the front wall.

We have only just begun, and need to put the soundstage on the very top of the list. Those who don't are missing the music experience the way it was made.

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

geoffkait
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Hi, ho, Silver!
michael green wrote:

geoff said

"Rather than portray the entire CD issue as a Tuning issue"

The entire audio chain from start to finish is a Tuning issue. I think I'll stay on that high horse a while longer thank you :)

>>>>>>Interesting. So now you're saying Dark Matter and the green pen are Tuning devices as well as the other CD colored pens? How about the CD edge beveler? How about cleaners and enhancers?

geoff said

"This causes fluttering of the disc during play and yup, you guessed it, noise and distortion."

Oh, and what does this noise and distortion sound like geoff?

It sounds like noise and distortion. Of course it helps to eliminate the noise and distortion to appreciate what it actually sounds likes. Remind me to write a white paper on comparative listening. Sorta like comparative religion. You can't appreciate things in a vacuum, you have to have something to compare them to, no?

And while your at it, can you describe for us what tape alignment distortion sounds like? How about tape bleed distortion? Or spool distortion. And one of the worst, pad pressure distortion?

>>>>No, I'll let you answer those. Thanks for asking. Do you know what fhe effect of scattered laser light sounds like?

I see with your Sony Portable Walkman Cassette Player you have become quite the audio expert.

>>>>>Thanks, but for the record I have been an audio expert for a long time.

geoff, have you ever listened to a 2" or 1" recorded master?

>>>>>No, can't say I have. Have you ever been in a Chinese prisoner of war camp?

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

michael green
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what I'm saying geoff

geoff

This is why I and the other listeners, engineers and designers can't take you serious when talking about certain topics. You think they're personal attacks and reasons for you to attack us, but we're simply saying that if your not in on the "doing" and "listening" part, it's impossible to make meaningful statements about the topic past your own personal experience which in the recording, tuning and tape playback is extremely limited.

White papers are always a good thing, but there are white papers published all day long by people theorizing and not actually doing, but no one is stopping you or anyone else from writing them.

according to your own posting

The Sony Walkman is as far as you have gone in the tape playing department. You've taken it up less than a year now. How could this possibly make you an expert on the topic of Tape recording and playback? Meaning how can I for example take you serious if you have not studied the different aspects of the topic both by reading and by lab work? Or on a consumer level even, if you haven't explored the technologies?

geoff said

"Do you know what fhe effect of scattered laser light sounds like?"

mg

That's an interesting topic, and if you would like to start a thread on it I might like to jump in and add to the mix.

geoff, if you or anyone gave some real time testing and references it could be useful for someone, but when you keep coming up making statements about you being an expert and we read that you haven't ever listened to a master or studied the generations of tapes or the conditions that affect them. Plus you make no reference to the adjusting of them, how do you expect us to take you serious, or at least at the same level of someone in the know?

Another question for you. Have you ever adjusted the head on a tape deck?

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

pablolie
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shp wrote:
shp wrote:

Pablolie,

What kind of turntable do you have these days? If you were making a mix tape for someone, what would be the #1 tune on there?

hi shp -

sorry i missed the question.

i do have a Technics SL-1210 with upgraded stuff in storage. it first went into a garage shelf in the late 90s, then into storage. the TEAC cassette deck actually long outlived the turntable in active duty.

i for one never harbored any nostalgia for vinyl. when i got my first good CD player (Denon 1290), which i paired with an entry level Luxman amp, i basically stopped listening to vinyl.

shp
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Apparently cassettes are back, too.

http://consequenceofsound.net/2014/05/r-i-p-ipod-sony-unveils-cassette-tape-that-can-hold-64750000-songs/

michael green
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all good stuff!

I think the main thing to all of this is that we realize there is a music explosion taking place. For the last 70 years the modern music scene, because of these technologies, have been able to grow at a rate that has never been. There are so many ideas to explore that we are going to see innovation in action like we have never seen.

Digital has opened up so many commonalities, and it is something that both engineer and programmer can work together on. There's no stopping the music train and the wars of who is better at what, is one issue, but it is also muted some by technology itself. By the time Vinyl, Tape and CD have awarded a winner recording and recording playback will have moved on to a more refine place. It won't stop people from having their past collections, and even a few companies reproducing like in the past, but the future brings a new chapter to listening, a broader field to play in. A field that is based on soundstage performance more than the small pieces system compression has given.

You'll notice like with Pono the talk is about the stage. Clarity and stage size and placement go hand and hand.

michael green
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http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

Catch22
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Market forces are in control of where music is going

Perfectionist audio will continue for many years to come and remain a niche market for audio nuts like it has always been. Truly great music is timeless and appealing for the ages. There will always be a small segment of the music arts that will preserve and advance the state of the art in reproducing music, both in the creation and release of material and the construction of playback equipment that aspires to faithfully reproduce sound as unadulterated as possible.

Mainstream music is in a bit of a pickle that I don't see as competing for the same consumer dollars as the audiophile might spend. It's more of a bifurcated industry as opposed to a common goal driven by the same fundamental principles of quality sound.

The dominant market for musical product is strictly digital and strictly convenience. When quality isn't a requirement of the consumer in just about any industry, quality will be abandoned in favor of what the consumer is demanding and right now that's all about convenience. Downloads and personal jukeboxes, like cell phones, will continue to drive the music industry and the consumer has said loud and clear, "That's good enough."

As pointed out in another thread, most modern popular music sounds better on lower quality playback devices and isn't capable of High Fidelity that doesn't exist within the music and will not benefit from superior playback, in fact it usually sounds notably worse. This is rather important from a business perspective when you think about it. The motivation from equipment manufacturers to create playback equipment that will serve this type of music (and there's two decades worth and growing) will allow them to market, sucessfully I would add, inferior, low resolution product that is cheaper to make and actually makes the music more appealing, an irresistable combination that will add to the bottom line.

The first rule of business is to stay in business and that means operate profitably and margins are everything in mass produced products.

We have two very different segments of the music industry and the gulf will continue to widen. And that's ok. Every generation gets their shot at trying to keep the wheels rolling along in a way that reflects what they value.

michael green
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my view is different

Systems that are stuck playing one sound, is the reason why they can't play more music. If someone doesn't know how to tune a system to a recording they are not going to get successful results with a wide range of music, no matter what the quality of the recording. The days of plug and play High End Audio are quickly coming to an end regardless of what is going on in the studios.

When someone has a system that can only play one sound, every recording played has no choice but to perform at that particular setting. Sometimes this works out ok, and many times not. There's no button to push to auto-cue the system to the recording. Since audiophiles moved to CD's and no tone controls, systems are one step further from matching the system to the sound that is on the CD. Does this mean you will never get the music to play at it's best? No, far from it. What these means is the listener needs to learn the skills of tuning his system electrically, mechanically and acoustically.

For those of you reading and seeing this conversation repeated, ask yourselves this. Why when asked to reference the same piece of music, the people who take the position of things being the recordings fault, will never say yes to the guys who are willing to listen.

When the statement of "Oh No it's the music or production" take note that there is never a reference between the audiophile making the claims that the recordings are bad and the rest of us. This to me anyway spells loud and clear a few things. One the listener does not know how to tune their system, two the listener does not know that recordings need tuned, and maybe three it isn't the other systems that are less revealing but his own.

I do agree with this statement "the gulf will continue to widen". But that gulf has nothing to do with audiophile revealing systems and the recordings. A good example of this is with the case of radio. Radio has always been compressed, yet the market for audiophile quality Tuners was huge for many years. Tape is alive, so is vinyl, CD and files. We all here tend to say this is better than that, but lets be honest, this is based on our personal successes and failers. Some people have had better luck with one source over another, one recording over another, one system over another and this will continue all the days of this part of the hobby. But what the "high end audiophile" should be looking at is why are the numbers of clients dropping like flies? If CD's for example are so bad, why do almost all high end audiophile component companies design and sell CD Players? Why have the high end audiophile reviewers for 30 years had CDP's in their class A ratings?

There is without a doupt something going on here, but it isn't what many are pointing at. What many are fighting against to the end, is the fact that the high end audio playback system can no longer float on their reputations. Audiophile spenders have been through the "buy yet another" one time too many and are not going to shell out the bucks this time. A few who are on their 2nd or 3rd system maybe, but not the guy who has bought from the pages of magazines only to be disappointed several times over.

It begs the question. How can components get such high ratings yet sound so poorly when placed in the audiophiles home?

Maybe it's time, as I have been suggesting and we have been doing, to put these components on notice. Throw away the price tag and opinion and let the best man win. Lets put to test this talk about lower quaility systems, because what you are really saying is "this is a price thing", and this couldn't be further from the truth. Fact is the guys who make these statements are no where to be found when it comes time for comparing. There is only one way you can tell if one setup is more revealing than another and that's to listen to them.

I 2 months ago put a $25,000.00 CDP up against an inexpensive CDP mod. I left the room and said have fun. Every listener picked the mod. I didn't choose the volume, or the music and they were all seasoned listeners. We've been doing this same test with the same results for quite a few years now. I'm I to call these listeners wrong? I think not, and neither can anyone else in all truth.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune
http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

geoffkait
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High density cassettes
shp wrote:

http://consequenceofsound.net/2014/05/r-i-p-ipod-sony-unveils-cassette-tape-that-can-hold-64750000-songs/

Of course this is good news for the convenience factor, something the market has sniffed out obviously. I wish the article talked about performance advantages, if any, of the new Sony cassette tape. You know what I'm taking about - frequency response, getting rid of Dolby maybe, going strictly analog, and who will be coming out with sufficiently high end casstte players to deal with this phenomenon, that's what I'd like to know about. Sony? Hmmmmmm.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

David Harper
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Catch
Catch22 wrote:

Perfectionist audio will continue for many years to come and remain a niche market for audio nuts like it has always been. Truly great music is timeless and appealing for the ages. There will always be a small segment of the music arts that will preserve and advance the state of the art in reproducing music, both in the creation and release of material and the construction of playback equipment that aspires to faithfully reproduce sound as unadulterated as possible.

Mainstream music is in a bit of a pickle that I don't see as competing for the same consumer dollars as the audiophile might spend. It's more of a bifurcated industry as opposed to a common goal driven by the same fundamental principles of quality sound.

The dominant market for musical product is strictly digital and strictly convenience. When quality isn't a requirement of the consumer in just about any industry, quality will be abandoned in favor of what the consumer is demanding and right now that's all about convenience. Downloads and personal jukeboxes, like cell phones, will continue to drive the music industry and the consumer has said loud and clear, "That's good enough."

As pointed out in another thread, most modern popular music sounds better on lower quality playback devices and isn't capable of High Fidelity that doesn't exist within the music and will not benefit from superior playback, in fact it usually sounds notably worse. This is rather important from a business perspective when you think about it. The motivation from equipment manufacturers to create playback equipment that will serve this type of music (and there's two decades worth and growing) will allow them to market, sucessfully I would add, inferior, low resolution product that is cheaper to make and actually makes the music more appealing, an irresistable combination that will add to the bottom line.

The first rule of business is to stay in business and that means operate profitably and margins are everything in mass produced products.

We have two very different segments of the music industry and the gulf will continue to widen. And that's ok. Every generation gets their shot at trying to keep the wheels rolling along in a way that reflects what they value.

Catch-excellent post. Best one I've read on this forum. Thanks for writing exactly what I think. I lost interest in Hi-fi a long time ago because of digital. Now I'm back,because of vinyl. Do you listen to vinyl?

David Harper
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marketing

Way back when CD first came out audiophiles complained they didn't sound good, but the music industry didn't care. They only cared about mass-market profits, so vinyl was eagerly abandoned as the industry convinced us that "the superior resolution of the CD may reveal shortcomings in the recording that were not audible with analog technology". And since most people weren't audiophiles,they didn't know what real sound quality was anyway, so it didn't matter. It turns out that the resolution of vinyl reveals shortcomings in digital processing that weren't audible for thirty years, since CD displaced LP's.

Laen
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I would not let my dog shit

I would not let my dog shit on cassettes,

get with the 2000s

this aint 1980

geoffkait
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Zorak says...
Laen wrote:

I would not let my dog shit on cassettes,

get with the 2000s

this aint 1980

 photo photo_27_zpshfqztqmt.jpg

Oh, goodie! A potty mouth newbie to chomp on.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

jgossman
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Really
Laen wrote:

I would not let my dog shit on cassettes,

get with the 2000s

this aint 1980

This is easily as dumb as any anti CD statement I've ever heard. CD is a very old format now. R2R is the oldest still, and in it's modern, say post 1990 form, still the absolute. There is no more a problem, at it's core with cassette, than with CD. They each have their drawbacks. Unfortunately, CD's is longterm listenability. That said, both are basically dead formats. The world is moving on.

michael green
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marketing

DH wrote

"Way back when CD first came out audiophiles complained they didn't sound good, but the music industry didn't care. They only cared about mass-market profits, so vinyl was eagerly abandoned as the industry convinced us that "the superior resolution of the CD may reveal shortcomings in the recording that were not audible with analog technology". And since most people weren't audiophiles,they didn't know what real sound quality was anyway, so it didn't matter."

mg

So David, I just want to be clear (not saying I agree or disagree). Your saying that the companies that have made CDP's are not audiophile companies? And "they didn't know what real sound quality was"?

When I read Stereophile and TAS and many of the other "high end rags" over the last 30-some years, they all recommended CDP's. Are you saying High End Audio is a Scam?

I need to point out that 90% of high end audio components over the last 30-some years have been made using CD's as the design source. If indeed you guys hate CD's so much, you must also dislike any of the components made by these companies, as this is the format that was and is used to make the design decisions from.

If ARC for example was designed based on the poor sound of the CD's, how good can their AMP's be? As well, if Stereophile is reviewing using CD's, this means that their reviewing has only reached "it didn't matter" levels.

Basically what you are saying David, is that high end audio since the early 80's, were not being accurate in their reviewing, and almost all the electronic companies missed the mark as well.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune
http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

geoffkait
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"You guys hate CDs"
michael green wrote:

DH wrote

"Way back when CD first came out audiophiles complained they didn't sound good, but the music industry didn't care. They only cared about mass-market profits, so vinyl was eagerly abandoned as the industry convinced us that "the superior resolution of the CD may reveal shortcomings in the recording that were not audible with analog technology". And since most people weren't audiophiles,they didn't know what real sound quality was anyway, so it didn't matter."

mg

So David, I just want to be clear (not saying I agree or disagree). Your saying that the companies that have made CDP's are not audiophile companies? And "they didn't know what real sound quality was"?

When I read Stereophile and TAS and many of the other "high end rags" over the last 30-some years, they all recommended CDP's. Are you saying High End Audio is a Scam?

I need to point out that 90% of high end audio components over the last 30-some years have been made using CD's as the design source. If indeed you guys hate CD's so much, you must also dislike any of the components made by these companies, as this is the format that was and is used to make the design decisions from.

If ARC for example was designed based on the poor sound of the CD's, how good can their AMP's be? As well, if Stereophile is reviewing using CD's, this means that their reviewing has only reached "it didn't matter" levels.

Basically what you are saying David, is that high end audio since the early 80's, were not being accurate in their reviewing, and almost all the electronic companies missed the mark as well.

michael green
MGA/RoomTune
http://tuneland.techno-zone.net/

I suspect you are still misunderstanding the arguments against CDs. Either intentionally or not. What I am saying, not speaking for anyone else, is that the problem with CDs is when they are played back through ANY playback system, even high end systems, they appear to be missing information that is PRESENT when listening to the same recording on a different format, say cassette tape. That missing information includes but is not limited to ambient information, details of the music, air, sweetness, liveness, bass performance and warmth. It is not that the CDs are inherently bad. The system can be made to sound better and the CDs can be made to sound better, and some or much of the "missing information" can be restored. But if one chooses not to do that he is stuck with whatever he gets. That's kind of what the whole discussion on these forums has been the past six months. Hel-loo! Hope that helps jog your memory. Refer to my recent discussion of freezing CDs en masse for more evidence that we are not really getting the full measure from CDs - or any media.

Geoff Kait
Machina Dynamica

D Slacker
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I need some help

I am trying to start a new forum on this site and I can't find where to start
Any help will be appreciated

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