Results 1 to 9 of 9
  1. #1
    Loving This kexodusc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Department of Heuristics and Research on Material Applications
    Posts
    9,025

    'nuther thread about Neil Young "Greatest Hits" album

    So what's the consensus on the new CD/DVD package? I've heard some people are disappointed, expecting video footage and ending up with the same tracks on a DVD instead.
    From what I've seen on the package though, the DVD is a high rez format, 24 bit, 96 KHz sampling rate...looks pretty good...

    Thumbs up, thumbs down?

    Anybody buy it?

  2. #2
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    6,883
    Just amazes me that anybody on this board that cares about sound quality would gripe about the Neil Young Greatest Hits CD+DVD combo pack. Audiophiles everywhere should be praising Mr. Young to no end that he cares enough to make a high res audio version of his greatest hits available to everyone with a garden variety DVD player, not just those with DVD-A and SACD players.

    But, the fact that even on this board we're getting complaints about the stereo DVD (which is uncompressed 96/24 resolution PCM) is indicative of why DVD-A and SACD have yet to gain traction in the market. With all these overlapping formats, it's easy to get confused.

    The standard DVD has a provision for uncompressed 96/24 two-track audio-only discs, and all DVD players are capable of playing back those high res audio tracks. The only difference between this and DVD-A is that DVD-A is compressed (and uses the MLP scheme to restore discarded bits during playback), capable of multichannel, capable of 192/24 resolution in stereo, and most importantly to the record companies, the format is copy protected. The advantage of putting uncompressed 96/24 PCM audio on DVD-V discs is that it can play on ANY DVD player, and the bitstream can be output digitally (unlike DVD-A and SACD, which must be output in analog).

    As far as the disc itself goes, all I can say is that the sound quality of the "super saturated" stereo DVD is superlative. The remastering job on both the CD and the DVD was very well done, but the DVD's audio quality is a step up. It's on par with the excellent 96/24 discs that Classic Records has put out.

    Just last night, I did an A/B comparison with the CD, and the DVD has a smoother and fuller sound to it (the CD was about 3-4 db louder on my system, so I had to adjust the volume accordingly). The analog recorded tracks showed the most noticeable contrasts, while the two tracks that were digitally recorded (at 44.1/16 resolution BTW) had little audible difference, and to these ears were not especially well recorded to begin with.

    I've listened to various Neil Young albums over the years, and I was never impressed with their audio quality (whether on LP or CD). But, listening to some of the tracks on this Greatest Hits compilation, it's almost startling how close up they can sound. My recollection on previous CD and LP versions that I've heard is that they were mush and in the case of the CDs, fairly harsh sounding. It's been years since I've heard them, so my recollection might not be all right.

    In reading the technical notes, it seems that this is also one of the best opportunities to potentially hear the difference that higher resolution can make. In most of these debates about whether high resolution digital makes an audible difference over the 44.1/16 resolution with CDs, the mastering was done at a different stage by a different engineer potentially using a different master source, so an argument can be made that the mastering steps represented the actual causal effect rather than the resolution.

    With the Neil Young Greatest Hits package, the analog and digital master tapes were transferred to 176.4/24 and 192/24 digital masters for CD and DVD mastering, respectively, by the same mastering engineer using the same source material. Out of all the comparisons out there available to consumers, this is about as close as we can probably get, without keys to the recording studio vaults. Here are the technical notes, very impressive to make this available as well.

    http://www.neilyoung.com/archives/

  3. #3
    Loving This kexodusc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Department of Heuristics and Research on Material Applications
    Posts
    9,025
    Uh, okay Wooch, a simple "it kicks azz...buy it Kex", would have been more than enough
    Curious, how does this high-rez stack up against DVD-A and SACD?

  4. #4
    In perfect harmony DarrenH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Wolverine Country
    Posts
    552
    Just give me a redbook cd. I am not going to start another "format" collection.

    Period!
    Let the midnight special shine a light on me.

  5. #5
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    6,883
    Quote Originally Posted by kexodusc
    Uh, okay Wooch, a simple "it kicks azz...buy it Kex", would have been more than enough
    Curious, how does this high-rez stack up against DVD-A and SACD?
    Resolution's actually identical to or better than most of the high res stereo tracks that come with DVD-A. Check the back cover on a DVD-A sometime and you'll see the resolution for the stereo DVD-A track. Usually it's 96/24, but I've seen 48/24, 44.1/24, and 96/16 resolution as well. Advantage of the Neil Young disc is that you don't need a DVD-A player to enjoy the high res version, and can digitally output it to a receiver or processor with better bass management than what usually comes with DVD-A players.

    SACD, no idea how it would stack up since that format uses a different method of sampling and converting.

  6. #6
    Loving This kexodusc's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Department of Heuristics and Research on Material Applications
    Posts
    9,025
    Interesting...wonder why DVD-A's don't also come with standard DVD uncompressed 96/24 resolution PCM format...at least for stereo if it can't support high rez multi-channel...that would seem like a huge advantage over SACD and incentive for all to jump on board the high-rez format.
    Think I might take the plunge just to try this out. Even though I already own "Decade", which doesn't sound bad at all.

  7. #7
    BooBs are elitist jerks shokhead's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    So Cal
    Posts
    1,994
    The CD is HDCD is that helps. I dont here any difference between HDCD and a good remastered CD. I would like to try and CD with DTS.
    Look & Listen

  8. #8
    PPG
    PPG is offline
    Forum Regular PPG's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    Raleigh, NC
    Posts
    167
    In case you missed it, here's what I posted yesterday regarding this package, FWIW:

    http://forums.audioreview.com/showth...8268#post68268

  9. #9
    Forum Regular Woochifer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    SF Bay Area
    Posts
    6,883
    Quote Originally Posted by kexodusc
    Interesting...wonder why DVD-A's don't also come with standard DVD uncompressed 96/24 resolution PCM format...at least for stereo if it can't support high rez multi-channel...that would seem like a huge advantage over SACD and incentive for all to jump on board the high-rez format.
    Think I might take the plunge just to try this out. Even though I already own "Decade", which doesn't sound bad at all.
    Some DVD-As do include uncompressed PCM tracks, but most don't. There are three reasons for this 1) disc space (96/24 takes up a lot of room); 2) the DVD-V compatible audio tracks that come with DVD-A discs are usually reserved for 5.1 DD and/or DTS tracks, since multichannel's usually viewed as the main benefit with DVD-A; and 3) paranoia on the part of record companies over open digital formats with no copy protection.

    On that last point, record companies are paranoid as anything that high res digital audio tracks will get out in the open. That's why DVD-A and SACD can only output thru the analog outputs. Also, some of the audio-only DVDs have some copy protection on board in that they have the option of forcing a DVD player to downsample the track to 48/24 resolution for the digital output. But, the record companies obviously prefer the DVD-A format because it has tighter copy protection, and with multichannel audio, DVD-A has something else to sell other than just higher resolution. Equipment manufacturers also prefer DVD-A or SACD because it means that people have to buy a new player to play the high res discs. That's why the 96/24 PCM capability that's built into the DVD standard and every DVD player ever produced gets so little attention and use. That Neil Young can get a high res release on an open format is a sign that he cares about getting the highest quality to the biggest possible audience.

    If you've never heard a 96/24 disc, it's worth trying and comparing. The CD on that Neil Young package is already an excellent remastering job, and the DVD track takes yet another step up. Very impressive audio quality, and probably the best available comparison of CD vs. high res PCM because they were both mastered off the same source tapes by the same sound engineer in the same studio around the same time.

    The 96/24 discs from Classic Records are the best that I've heard, with uniformly excellent sound quality. All of those remasters are a noticeable improvement over the CD and even LP versions. Well worth seeking out, but not necessarily a good comparison of the formats because Classic uses some of the best mastering engineers around (and often the original recording engineers participate as well) and they usually use first generation vault pressings as a reference playback. This means that they are trying to match the tonal characteristics of the original LP pressings, and reflects a level of attention that you'll won't typically see from a big record company reissue. A lot of early CDs sounded horrible because they were simply transferred without regard for the type of sound that the original recording engineer was trying to achieve. Classic's attention to detail might yield similarly great audio quality even if it was just transferred at 44.1/16 CD resolution.

Thread Information

Users Browsing this Thread

There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)

Similar Threads

  1. Best of '03 time
    By Slosh in forum Rave Recordings
    Replies: 35
    Last Post: 01-28-2011, 01:16 PM
  2. Fans Get Screwed By Neil Young
    By Mr Peabody in forum Rave Recordings
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 01-20-2005, 11:45 AM
  3. Replies: 2
    Last Post: 07-26-2004, 05:57 PM
  4. Nice Neil Young Comp Set from mad rhetorik
    By Alung in forum Rave Recordings
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 04-06-2004, 07:24 AM
  5. Burning: 2-disc Neil Young comp
    By mad rhetorik in forum Rave Recordings
    Replies: 11
    Last Post: 03-27-2004, 08:09 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •