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Vinyl comparison - audio quality discussion.


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#1 issordni

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Posted 09 June 2014 - 10:56 PM

Hey everyone.

 

Just want to compare notes about some TMV and Omar vinyl I have, and my opinion on the sound quality. I'd like yours too. For starters, I have a fairly new Ortofon 2M red and a very good amp/speaker set-up. Records like Haxan Cloak sound incredible (attesting to the ability of my set-up to produce crisp highs and clear, resonant lows).

 

Obviously albums are recorded differently, with different mixers and engineers- in different studios etc etc. I'd just like your opinions on this...

 

I just bought Deloused (the MOV gold print) and it sounds phenomenal, really well recorded and mixed, crystal clear.

Frances is an original print but in very good condition. It sounds slightly more muffled all around, but the vocals are very well defined. Drums sound slightly like they're recorded in the room next door- no crispness to the tom toms, for example.

Amputechture is clean and crisp enough; but I'm not a great fan of how this album was mixed in general. I have no complaints about the vinyl edition. Again though, I have an original orange/white pressing.

Bedlam- I have mixed opinions. Aberinkula sounds muddy- everything almost underwater. Sides B and C sound pretty good. Agadez, my favourite song on the record, sounds pretty good butI'm not convinced that this album is very well mixed or recorded.

Octahedron is 2nd only to Deloused in terms of the warmth I get from the instruments and the space between them. I think this was very well recorded- the dynamics on Side D- Copurnicus and Luciforms in particular are excellent. The drums sound crisp and deep throughout, a key indicator of recording quality and then vinyl quality. I think this and Deloused are my favourite 'sounding' LPs.

Nocturniquet I don't own on vinyl but I hear from people that it sounds like it was recorded using water-damaged cassette tapes.

 

I'm leaning towards the idea that Bedlam sounds better as FLAC than on vinyl. Deloused and Octahedron are clearly the best recorded albums. Frances second, but the drums aren't crisp or bassy enough for me, or there isn't enough clarity. Bedlam sounds like mud on vinyl, and listening to it today really made me want to write this- do you have the same experience/opinions? I'm curious what set ups you have and how you define vinyl and sound quality. I just expect a lot more depth, space and warmth in the sound than Bedlam offers me- it sounds very flat, and I know my record player set-up is OK because numerous other LPs, including Deloused and Octa, sound revelatory.

 

Anyway, was curious.

 



#2 A.N.Other

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 12:02 AM

The thing about drums on Frances is that they intentionally recorded them to tape to get that sound. I actually like it.

Also, any chance that you record and post some samples of MOV De-Loused? I passed on bying it (don't have too much spare money ATM) but most the reviews I've read praised the SQ.



#3 issordni

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 12:10 AM

Oh, ok. That's interesting- I think on the whole Frances really sounds great on vinyl. The clarity in the opening madness of Cygnus, for example (the kind of clarity missing on Aberinkula, for me) is really impressive and I enjoy it as a whole, but I just wish the drums had a bit more definition. They do sound warm- I'd love to read some quotes about the recording process for Frances, if you have any.

 

I'm growing ever more disappointed with how Bedlam sounds on vinyl though. Sad face.



#4 issordni

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 12:22 PM

 

Also, any chance that you record and post some samples of MOV De-Loused?

 

Not sure my set-up allows for digitising vinyl, or if it does I haven't figured it out yet! It's a phenomenally good sound though- crystal clear throughout the spectrum.



#5 deadeye

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 06:10 PM

frances is the definitely the best engineered tmv album



#6 jimmyjoe

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 07:35 PM

I have both original and the gold reissue of DitC. I was very impressed by the gold reissue. While I had hoped it'd be "metallic" looking like the original, the sound quality made up for that!

 

Frances sounds great, for such an amazing album, it's hard to go looking for fault in it, but on my copy (black 3LP), side 5 has a kid of hiss on the vocals, very disappointing.

 

Amp is probably my favourite album and I think it sounds killer. When I got it, it was my first non-black album, so i was instantly captivated by it. I can remember the first time I spun it, as I'd usually skip Vicarious Atonement, but let it spin as I wanted to get to tetra, and holy shit! I was blown away by how it sounded, it was like going from grainy CRT to 1080p HD. Couldn't believe my ears when the keys and bass come in just before "Don't let these hands..."

 

I think Bedlam sounds great. If only because before that, the start of Congugal Burns always sounded clipped to me, on vinyl it just doesn't hit that horrible broken glass roof that the digital versions I'd heard do, sweet bliss!

 

Octa is a great listen, being the most acoustic record, it has the most breathing space and I think it utilises it perfectly. The only down side is 2 songs per side, hence having to flip almost as soon as you've sat down! The outro noises on Twilight are phenomenal!

 

I know Noct gets a lot of hate for the production, but I think it sounds good for what it is. It's got that gritty, garagy, lo-fi thing going for it. I don't havemany albums like it, so I guess it's at least unique.

 

I've a good few solo albums, but I'll get to them later, I wouldn't listen to them as much as the TVM records.



#7 issordni

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Posted 10 June 2014 - 11:27 PM

What you say about the hisses on Frances could be something to do with sibilance picked up by your needle maybe. I don't know.

You're absolutely right about Octa- there's a lot less going on, less guitar and effect tracks, so more space on the recording. It certainly benefits from it- but it's all masterfully EQ'd- the opening of Copernicus and the way the vocals shimmer, the punch and kick of Pridgen's drums throughout- and the closing section of Luciforms all sound superb.

I really can't get over how Bedlam sounds- it's really muffled and I'm surprised you're not hearing that too. Compare that sound with the MOV Deloused, with Ampu (which I listened to on vinyl today, and it sounded really great), and with Octa- can't you hear that difference? I listen to Aberinkula- can't hear the drums, bass is super muffled, everything sounds pitched at around the same frequency and there's no space whatsoever.

 

On the Omar solo stuff- amongst the records I have:

 

Xenophanes is a bit disappointing- very little bass throughout. No real space between instruments, it sounds super digital and flat. 

Absence Makes The Heart sounds much the same, but very bright. Quite enjoyable, but again- sounds digitised. Small gaps between tracks (!!!) on the vinyl suggest it came from a digital source.

Cryptomnesia sounds much better, more spacious and dynamic on vinyl than other formats. Very pleased here. 

Buffalo is a good sounding LP, it's quite natural and warm but not super well produced. Vinyl is good though.

 

Can anyone attest to the sound quality on vinyl for Solar Gambling? Cos I'm looking to pay good money for that, but I want to know it sounds clean, punchy and full- as vinyl should, and better than the FLAC files I have of it at present.



#8 A.N.Other

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Posted 11 June 2014 - 08:41 AM

 I'd love to read some quotes about the recording process for Frances, if you have any.

There are quite a few here: http://forum.thecoma...showtopic=28349

Also, a great article about De-Loused: http://mixonline.com...dio_mars_volta/



#9 jimmyjoe

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Posted 13 June 2014 - 11:04 PM

What you say about the hisses on Frances could be something to do with sibilance picked up by your needle maybe. I don't know.
You're absolutely right about Octa- there's a lot less going on, less guitar and effect tracks, so more space on the recording. It certainly benefits from it- but it's all masterfully EQ'd- the opening of Copernicus and the way the vocals shimmer, the punch and kick of Pridgen's drums throughout- and the closing section of Luciforms all sound superb.
I really can't get over how Bedlam sounds- it's really muffled and I'm surprised you're not hearing that too. Compare that sound with the MOV Deloused, with Ampu (which I listened to on vinyl today, and it sounded really great), and with Octa- can't you hear that difference? I listen to Aberinkula- can't hear the drums, bass is super muffled, everything sounds pitched at around the same frequency and there's no space whatsoever.
 
On the Omar solo stuff- amongst the records I have:
 
Xenophanes is a bit disappointing- very little bass throughout. No real space between instruments, it sounds super digital and flat. 
Absence Makes The Heart sounds much the same, but very bright. Quite enjoyable, but again- sounds digitised. Small gaps between tracks (!!!) on the vinyl suggest it came from a digital source.
Cryptomnesia sounds much better, more spacious and dynamic on vinyl than other formats. Very pleased here. 
Buffalo is a good sounding LP, it's quite natural and warm but not super well produced. Vinyl is good though.
 
Can anyone attest to the sound quality on vinyl for Solar Gambling? Cos I'm looking to pay good money for that, but I want to know it sounds clean, punchy and full- as vinyl should, and better than the FLAC files I have of it at present.


I don't think the Frances thing is simbelence, I don't get the hiss on any other albums. I got it second hand, so could just be a bit of miss treatment by a previous owner.

I'll check out bedlam tomorrow. I think it suffers from the fact that there's just so much going on, as I said I was just blown away by how good and unclipped the intro to conjugal sounded.

I've a good few solo albums as well, gonna blaze one up and spin them tomorrow.




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