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  1. #1
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    Question Can Bad Recordings damage equipment

    Hi!
    I was just wondering whether bad recordings can have a damaging effect on speakers, amplifier etc????? In fact i played a live recording that was done in a local club, where the guy who did the recording did it through the most ancient system you could imagine, but it was a fantastic gig, and i really wanted to listen to the cd, but was just worried if this very poor recording could have done any damage to my system????

  2. #2
    Forum Regular jim goulding's Avatar
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    Mate . . No, is the generic answer. But playing any recording louder than your speakers can handle is dangerous. Unless there's a worm in there? Unless it's the kind you drink? It's late. I'm done. But . . it's such a good vintage!..
    designer/manufacturer of custom made time and phase correcting real wool surrounds

  3. #3
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by tony340
    Hi!
    I was just wondering whether bad recordings can have a damaging effect on speakers, amplifier etc????? In fact i played a live recording that was done in a local club, where the guy who did the recording did it through the most ancient system you could imagine, but it was a fantastic gig, and i really wanted to listen to the cd, but was just worried if this very poor recording could have done any damage to my system????
    When amps and speakers are poorly matched (a weaker amp than the speaker needs)
    the right conditions can cause clipping, which can damage speakers.
    But that can happen with good recordings as well as bad
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    I feel there is a drop in sound quality now, after playing this piss recording a couple of times, without knowing a ball about damage to them speakers... I find there are definite drops in volume level as well! The sound and volume has definitely dropped... I'm so damn disappointed, since i had no bloody idea about this kind of recording doing damage

  5. #5
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    Tony, a bad recording WILL NOT DAMAGE anything. If a bad recording damaged gear we'd all be trashing stereo gear all the time. Clipping happens with abuse or stupidity where some one turns the system up beyond what it is capable of running with a clean signal or sound. I'm not sure what you are experiencing but it's definitely not from you playing your recording. In today's music there are a lot of sounds musicians can make with processing, effects and synthesizers, our systems are designed to play whatever we put into them. As long as the signal to the speakers is a clean one it don't matter the content. Look at the test tone from surround receivers, white or pink noise, this don't damage anything. Many have discs with various frequency test tones as well. For clarification you might want to Google "clipping" or "amplifier clipping" to see positively this has nothing to do with what disc you play.

    Again, a recording, in itself, will NOT damage a system.

    Sorry you were misled by a member who obviously has reading comprehension issues and a knack for confusing things. Some where on AR there was a thread started where people were asked to list their worst recordings, there were many and NO ONE once mentioned any damage. I hope others will way in on this thread later in case you may need further reassurance. Actually, I just came onto this thread due to the board being slow, never in my wildest dreams did I think a moron would give a wrong answer to such a basic question. I'm not faulting you Tony we all have to start some where and you obviously heard something of concern to you. If a member was to post to your concern they should have focused on your question and not confuse you by bringing something totally unrelated into the conversation. I'm also sure by tomorrow we will see an equally incoherent and nasty response from the troll but if you are wise you will ignore it as I plan to.

  6. #6
    I took a headstart... basite's Avatar
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    A bad recording will not damage the system.

    The only time a recording can cause damage to your system, is when there is exessive rumble in the recording, however, I have never had problems with this. So it has to be extremely much. Especially with normal sized or big woofers this isn't a problem.

    however, every recording will damage your hearing when played too loud for too long. Watch out for that, gear is replacable, your ears aren't.

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    What kind of recording would have accessive rumble? Even low end bass wouldn't be destructive unless some other cause was there in conjunction. Consider this my daughter does listening therapy, this would be maddening for a typical person to listen to it's like taking a lever on an EQ and occasionally maxing it out. Much of this is done in the lower octaves and has to be done on portable equipment so the child can do the therapy at various places, point, this does not cause damage to even entry level gear. When I heard a demo of the Dynaudio Flagship Evidence speakers they were driven by 650 watt Krell monoblocks, they through in every extreme low end recording we could find and played loud, at least Rock concert level, it was clean, but the lows you could feel on your insides so much so you wonder what the effect would be if exposed to it for extended time, this didn't cause damage to any gear. So I maintain one can certainly damage gear through abuse or some kind of accident but NOT in the recording itself. I haven't studied subsonic filters but I know some older gear had them to filter out extreme low end frequencies that were deemed unnecessary I don't know of any damage caused by those subsonic frequencies or the filter would have to almost be mandatory. If anyone finds info contrary to what I stated please let me know.

  8. #8
    I took a headstart... basite's Avatar
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    I have one or 2 cd's with rumble on them (well, not caused by the cd), all old music, recorded from vinyl to cd (not home made or so...). And I guess the TT was poorly set up, or influenced by vibrations, but there is some pretty heavy rumble on it, I don't know for sure, but I think that when played loud, overexcursion could happen...

    but I'm not sure...

    Keep them spinning,
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    I'm a happy 20 year old...

  9. #9
    Forum Regular audio amateur's Avatar
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    Well if you've got some kind of very low frequency in the mix, whichever way it got there, you could screw your woofs, if they can't handle the lows. I melted some decent velodyne 'sats' (they had four inch drivers') in no time with a 20Hz tone powered by a crappy technics surround amp. Since then i've always been careful. But other than that I think you'd be hard pressed to hurt any of your speakers simply by playing some 'bad recording'. I wouldn't worry

    AA.

  10. #10
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    But Bassite you've listened to the recording right? No damage, right? I agree it could damage equipment IF turned up but that wouldn't necessarily be the recordings fault, turning up an excellent recording beyond what your amp will do can kill speakers as well. With your discs and discs where extreme high recordlevels were used or high levels of low frequency program all need more caution when listening maybe but my point is, it's not the recording that will damage the equipment, it would be the use of the equipment with the recording. The original poster didn't say if he was listening at normal level or not.

    I may have misunderstood what was asked but I presumed he was asking if the content on the recording will damage anything. Content in itself will not. But misuse of equipment will but that stands with any recording.

  11. #11
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    Thank you very much Peabody! I really am very very appreciative of the kind and valuable inputs you have kept giving me... Actually, this recording was played at just around the quarter position on my Rotel, and it was not at all played at a high volume level obviously, and the CD is basically a very harsh sounding one, and is a very very poor recording done live... In fact it was a line taken out of the mixer at this gig, and recorded through a ancient Akai cassette deck. It was such a great gig, and i was so itchy to listen to it, that i played it through the system, without ever thinking about this issue... So to conclude, it was a verrrrrrrrrryyyyyyyyyy poor recording, played at the quarter position on my Rotel RA-1062 with Paradigm Studio 20.. Thanks

  12. #12
    Forum Regular pixelthis's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody
    Tony, a bad recording WILL NOT DAMAGE anything. If a bad recording damaged gear we'd all be trashing stereo gear all the time. Clipping happens with abuse or stupidity where some one turns the system up beyond what it is capable of running with a clean signal or sound. I'm not sure what you are experiencing but it's definitely not from you playing your recording. In today's music there are a lot of sounds musicians can make with processing, effects and synthesizers, our systems are designed to play whatever we put into them. As long as the signal to the speakers is a clean one it don't matter the content. Look at the test tone from surround receivers, white or pink noise, this don't damage anything. Many have discs with various frequency test tones as well. For clarification you might want to Google "clipping" or "amplifier clipping" to see positively this has nothing to do with what disc you play.

    Again, a recording, in itself, will NOT damage a system.

    Sorry you were misled by a member who obviously has reading comprehension issues and a knack for confusing things. Some where on AR there was a thread started where people were asked to list their worst recordings, there were many and NO ONE once mentioned any damage. I hope others will way in on this thread later in case you may need further reassurance. Actually, I just came onto this thread due to the board being slow, never in my wildest dreams did I think a moron would give a wrong answer to such a basic question. I'm not faulting you Tony we all have to start some where and you obviously heard something of concern to you. If a member was to post to your concern they should have focused on your question and not confuse you by bringing something totally unrelated into the conversation. I'm also sure by tomorrow we will see an equally incoherent and nasty response from the troll but if you are wise you will ignore it as I plan to.

    GEE, someones got his panties in a wad.
    Actually there is some stuff that WILL damage equipment, torture test kinda stuff, but I didnt mention it because you will never run across it, and clipping IS a real problem,
    even at moderate vollume levels poorly matched speaker/ amp combos will damage your
    gear, and its NOT unrelated to the topic at hand.
    Actually some high freqs (or extremely low ones) CAN damage speakers if played at high vollume levels, but you cant blame the "recording", thats "user" error.
    Take it from a "moron" who was rebuilding color TV sets in the 1970's
    LG 42", integra 6.9, B&W 602s2, CC6 center, dm305rears, b&w
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  13. #13
    I took a headstart... basite's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr Peabody
    ut I presumed he was asking if the content on the recording will damage anything. Content in itself will not. But misuse of equipment will but that stands with any recording.

    ah, in this case I will completely second you
    Life is music!

    Mcintosh MA6400 Integrated
    Double Advent speakers
    Thiel CS2.3's
    *DIY Lenco L75 TT
    * SME 3012 S2
    * Rega RB-301
    *Denon DL-103 in midas body
    *Denon DL-304
    *Graham slee elevator EXP & revelation
    *Lehmann audio black cube SE
    Marantz CD5001 OSE
    MIT AVt 2 IC's
    Sonic link Black earth IC's
    Siltech MXT New york IC's
    Kimber 4VS speakercable
    Furutech powercord and plugs.

    I'm a happy 20 year old...

  14. #14
    Village Idiot johnny p's Avatar
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    you can play just static and feedback with $100,000 components, and as long as you don't cause clipping, etc. as stated before, you'd be fine.

    Bad recordings cause damage as much as Good Recordings prevent it..... (see, no relation!)

  15. #15
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    Guys thanks so much for all the input and advice! The fact is that i still have not come to a complete understanding whether Bad Recordings are damaging or not? I do comprehend that some of you say that it certainly doesnt, and some say YES, so its a bit confusing!!! Also my amp and speaker combo should be fine, since i'm using Rotel and paradigm, which were recommended... So i would like to be well informed about this in the future as well, since i'm quite ignorant about the do's and dont's

  16. #16
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    I thought we came to a concensus that the recording in itself will not and cannot damage a system. But misuse of the system with or with out a bad recording can damage your system. If some one does not agree I'd like to see just one example of this. I mean think about it, what is your system designed to do? Reproduce sound, any sound from 20 to
    20khz, good or bad. The system don't have a gag reflex that triggers puke when a bad recording is put in.

    If bad recordings damaged a system I'd have to replace mine every time I played Motorhead. Well, unless I learned my lesson and didn't play it after replacing a certain number of systems But that would give a new meaning to Killed By Death.

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    Thanks Peabody! Thread closed!!!!

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