Best version of REO Speedwagon's "Hi Infidelity"?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by JohnBeas, Sep 10, 2007.

  1. sa5150

    sa5150 Forum Resident

    Thnak you so much . I will check these out tomrrow :)
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  2. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    Scotland, UK.
    I just bought the following CD pressing of this classic REO album. There's no pressing date on it but I'm lead to believe it's from 1986. I was therefore surprised to find that it is encoded with pre-emphasis (I thought pre-emphasis was abandoned before 1986?):


    I like to avoid CDs encoded with pre-emphasis wherever possible because the purist in me suspects that de-emphasing such CDs using computer software causes rounding to occur and results in a loss of low-level bits in the de-emphasised file. I'm not sure if this is true or not, but it's enough to trigger my audiophile nervosa! I de-emphasised the album using xACT which I believe uses a Sox de-emphasis algorithm. The result sounds OK but the EQ is slightly different to the same tracks that are on their 1990 'The Hits' compilation.

    With that in mind, can anyone please confirm whether the following pressing has the same mastering to the one above, or a different mastering, and also whether it is encoded with pre-emphasis like the above pressing? The only difference I can see is the one above says "Made In Japan" and the one below says "Made In Austria", all the other numbers/codes appear to be the same.

    Last edited: Jun 22, 2018
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  3. Brian Vollrath

    Brian Vollrath Forum Resident

    Corcoran, MN
    Those look like they would have the same mastering to me. The EK36844 early US pressing is my favorite for the CD. The EK36844 does not have pre-emphasis. Friday Music is my favorite for the vinyl.
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  4. c-eling

    c-eling Fruit Juice Everywhere

    According to the DR database, The Austrian manufacture carries the 'after pre-emphasis' mastering. You're probably safe.
    Pre-Emphasis can remain on titles well into the 90's or later if not taken care of. I have a 90's manufactured Tom Petty disc that carries it.
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  5. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    Scotland, UK.
    Do you have a link to this please? I checked the database a few days ago but didn't notice any reference to 'after pre-emphasis'.
  6. ToTo Man

    ToTo Man the band not the dog

    Scotland, UK.
    Do you have a photo I can look at to help identify this pressing please?
  7. Brian Vollrath

    Brian Vollrath Forum Resident

    Corcoran, MN
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  8. c-eling

    c-eling Fruit Juice Everywhere

    Looks like one worldwide mastering after the pre-emphasis disc Brian.
    I have a later 'Best Price' 1A11 that matches those levels.
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  9. Macman007

    Macman007 Sitting mId-way between 2 very large speakers

    I have an original Gold stamped US CBS Promotional Copy on vinyl. Compared to the later vinyl pressings or the original US CD I own, it blows them both away. Side 1 is 1-AA Kendun, Side 2 is 1-G Kendun. Absolutely dead quiet surfaces on both sides, richly colored shiny vinyl with well defined grooves. My copy rates a solid Mint Minus on both sides. Bass is taut, musical, and defined. Vocals/midrange come across as rich and detailed, extending beyond the speaker plane in all directions as well as behind the listener. High frequency response and transients are controlled, accurate, clean, without sibilance or distortion, even on the louder, more dynamic songs.

    If you are looking for a definitive vinyl copy, this is the one to own.. You can really hear how fresh the tapes were, and though the pressing itself is a tad thin, at around 140 grams, the vinyl itself is of high quality, flat, and well pressed dead on-center. I can't remember where I scored this copy, it's been nearly 35 years but a price on the jacket cover indicating 3.99$, which was a steal, especially in this condition. I had forgot I bought it. This has to be a fairly rare, early pressing, being a Promo. Discogs has information on the matrices, but does not list it as a Promotional copy. I submitted a request to update their information reflecting it as being a Promo copy.

    Good hunting!
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  10. Nick1296

    Nick1296 Active Member

    I bought the EK 61614 (1990 Epic/Legacy) at first since I couldn't find a copy of the EK 38644 (US 1984) version and I wasn't particularly impressed with the EK1614.
    I recently found a EK 36844 on eBay that I got a private price on ($5.50) and I am liking it much more then I liked the Epic/Legacy by far. In a way I regret not passing on that Epic/Legacy, since I only got it because I have had issues with disc rot on eBay.

    The 1990 is too loud for me to want to go to it first and it loses some of the fidelity of the 1984 US release of the album had - it isn't severe, but it is noticeable enough. The 1984 does need to be turned up quite a bit to pop, but I would much rather have a album I need to turn the sound up on to get the full benefit of and that's a compromise I am okay with.

    To further back up by dislike for the remasters here is the ReplayGain results:
    EK 36844: [​IMG]
    EK 61614 (Epic/Legacy 1990): [​IMG]
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  11. Macman007

    Macman007 Sitting mId-way between 2 very large speakers

    As music / instruments in real life are diverse and dynamic, recorded music should accurately represent actual dynamics of the actual performance. The reality is recorded music typically needs SOME limiting, enough to get it within a realistic window of what the ear hears and finds pleasurable.

    Problem is many CD's were limited and compressed within an inch of their life. This has become especially problematical in the last 2 decades. We define this as the Loudness Wars. Because of the limitations placed on vinyl, especially vinyl that can be played on a large price range of turntables,the lack of dynamic range isn't nearly as bad as it is on digital media.

    Many of the earlier re-recordings to CD vinyl in the '90's sounded awful, vinyl and CD alike. Squeezing the dynamic range to death isn't as new a phenomena as some think. A full-on analog performance like Hi-Infidelity sounds better on the original commercial cassette or vinyl releases because the engineers were still thinking about making music sound good, and not just loud. It took me a while to understand why this is. To make matters worse, early CD releases of back catalog material often used the vinyl master tape for the CD releases, and because of digitals wide dynamic range they cheated by limiting/compressing everything and punching the levels up high as possible.

    If you have to keep turning something down to make it listenable, instead of up and down as the music changes, something is very wrong with the recording. Typically, I can push an analog recording of something like Hi-Infidelity up to the 5-10 wpc range, and not need to turn it down at regular intervals throughout, because it doesn't become fatiguing to the ears after ten minutes.
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  12. Nick1296

    Nick1296 Active Member

    That's why I got the 1984 CD when I got that price on it. You can't find the EK 36844 for that cheap very often.
  13. pool_of_tears

    pool_of_tears Searching For Simplicity

    Eastern Iowa
    Music doesn’t need limiting, especially in the mastering stage. A little analog compression, during mixing, that’s ok and is nothing new. To compress and/or limit in mastering, is completely unnecessary
    carlwm likes this.
  14. JohnBeas

    JohnBeas Forum Resident Thread Starter

    Has anyone heard the Japanese Blu-Spec version?
  15. Bill007

    Bill007 Forum Resident

    Boynton Beach, Fla
    All I know is that my cd sounds great
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  16. c-eling

    c-eling Fruit Juice Everywhere

    The 36844 uses a later non pre-emphasis mastering and was manufactured into the early 90's.
    The 1984 would be a Japan manufacture and/for the US market- 35.8P-4, this does have pre-emphasis. Not sure on the 1988 Japan 25.8P if the pre carried on or if they properly EQ'd this one.
    Last edited: Nov 17, 2019
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  17. Porkpie

    Porkpie Forum Resident

    I’m in the UK and would like to pick up a copy of this on vinyl. Has anyone heard the 2019 reissue (I believe it’s a reissue of the 2010 release on Friday music) or am I better off with an original UK pressing?
  18. krisjay

    krisjay Forum Resident

    Certainly one I'd love to see MoFi take a swing at.
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  19. StingRay5

    StingRay5 Important Impresario

    I'm not so sure about that. I just bought an EK 36844 (DI8P 050004 2). On the back cover, it says "Record manufactured in Japan by CBS/Sony, Tokyo, Japan" and "Now Made In The U.S.A." The TOC does not indicate pre-emphasis, but when I first ripped it, the resulting files were very trebly. I ran them through "sox deemph" and the result is the sound I remember from hearing this album on vinyl 40 years ago. It certainly isn't muffled.

    One question out of curiosity: What is the significance of the groups of 3 and 5 symbols to the right of the numbers on the inner ring?

    Last edited: Jun 23, 2021
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  20. c-eling

    c-eling Fruit Juice Everywhere

    I'm not sure what those groups represented.
    @princesskiki may know.
    Nice find, that is a later US manufacture, neat though if it contains the pre-emphasis mastering. The PE flag would be SUBQ.
    The 'Japan' is just carry-over art out of laziness :laugh:
    *The 'No' pre-emphasis US mastering would carry these peaks-
    DR13 0.00 dB -13.94 dB 3:46 01-Don't Let Him Go
    DR11 0.00 dB -12.83 dB 3:22 02-Keep on Loving You
    DR11 0.00 dB -12.53 dB 3:50 03-Follow My Heart
    DR12 -1.17 dB -15.35 dB 3:17 04-In Your Letter
    DR12 -0.18 dB -14.53 dB 4:01 05-Take It on the Run
    DR11 0.00 dB -13.25 dB 3:50 06-Tough Guys
    DR12 -0.04 dB -13.80 dB 3:07 07-Out of Season
    DR12 -0.63 dB -14.74 dB 2:25 08-Shakin' It Loose
    DR12 0.00 dB -14.14 dB 2:40 09-Someone Tonight
    DR11 -0.31 dB -14.64 dB 4:29 10-I Wish You Were There

    *Pre-Emphasis mastering this-
    DR Peak RMS Duration Track
    DR13 -3.84 dB -18.47 dB 3:46 01-Don't Let Him Go
    DR13 -3.57 dB -18.69 dB 3:22 02-Keep on Loving You
    DR13 -4.16 dB -19.04 dB 3:51 03-Follow My Heart
    DR13 -5.59 dB -20.68 dB 3:17 04-In Your Letter
    DR12 -5.99 dB -20.10 dB 4:04 05-Take It on the Run
    DR12 -5.33 dB -18.67 dB 3:50 06-Tough Guys
    DR14 -4.88 dB -20.00 dB 3:07 07-Out of Season
    DR13 -3.36 dB -18.97 dB 2:25 08-Shakin' It Loose
    DR13 -4.09 dB -19.11 dB 2:40 09-Someone Tonight
    DR14 -2.86 dB -20.73 dB 4:30 10-I Wish You Were There
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2021
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  21. StingRay5

    StingRay5 Important Impresario

    The track DR's I get match your "non-pre-emphasis" version. The thing is, though, the tracks are still way too trebly, and they sound great after de-emphasis. It could be that it's just a bright master that happens to be close enough to pre-emphasis to sound good when de-emphasized, but from the listener's point of view that seems rather like a distinction without a difference. Here's what I get from MAAT DROffline Mk II:

    File Name | Max. TPL | LUFSi | DR (PMF) |

    01 Don't Let Him Go | +0.13 | -13.15 | 13 |
    02 Keep On Loving You | +0.33 | -12.11 | 11 |
    03 Follow My Heart | +0.49 | -11.41 | 11 |
    04 In Your Letter | -1.14 | -14.56 | 12 |
    05 Take It on the Run | +0.16 | -13.84 | 12 |
    06 Tough Guys | +0.01 | -11.96 | 11 |
    07 Out of Season | +0.02 | -13.25 | 12 |
    08 Shakin' It Loose | -0.11 | -13.89 | 12 |
    09 Someone Tonight | -0.01 | -13.22 | 12 |
    10 I Wish You Where There | -0.29 | -14.24 | 11 |
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  22. princesskiki

    princesskiki Kiki's Mom

    Interesting... I did not get an alert for your post again!
    Anyway, my best guess is that those symbols are tied to mother/stamper code.

    BTW, the US DADC digital transfer in the mid-80's sounds closest to the original LP mastering.
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  23. StingRay5

    StingRay5 Important Impresario

    How can one tell a US DADC disc? Are those the ones with CMU plant codes stamped into the clear ring around the center? And they would have a different mastering from my DI8P 050004 disc?
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2021
  24. princesskiki

    princesskiki Kiki's Mom

    Personally, I avoid Pitman plant CD's (CMU) like the plague.

    Hi Infidelity was a bright-sounding recording. The best vinyl pressings that I have heard sound bright.
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  25. c-eling

    c-eling Fruit Juice Everywhere

    I actually forgot all about this thread Caroline :laugh:
    That pre-emphasis mastering tames it (35 8P)
    However, some might like fresh/crisp mastering's :winkgrin:
    princesskiki likes this.

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