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Mercury SR vs MG

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Posted on January 8, 2017 at 18:42:39
michael22
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Most of the earlier Mercury "Living Presence" classical records have liner notes describing the recording techniques used. The stereo records note that 3 microphones generally feed a 3-channel Ampex recorder. The mono versions of the same records note that a single omnidirectional microphone is used. I'm wondering whether the stereo and mono recordings were made simultaneously, or whether they were separate takes. Does anyone know?



 

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RE: Mercury SR vs MG, posted on January 8, 2017 at 19:57:53
ecl876
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I may be wrong but I believe once they went to stereo, they no longer recorded in mono. .

Correction: there are dual mono and stereo releases in much of their catalogue so I would guess they had a mono mike as well as stereo in the later years.

 

RE: Mercury SR vs MG, posted on January 8, 2017 at 20:11:06
michael22
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I'm wondering whether that center 'omnidirectional' mike was the center channel for the 3-channel stereo recording, i.e. whether the mono and stereo are of the same performance.

 

RE: Mercury SR vs MG, posted on January 8, 2017 at 21:25:51
ecl876
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I highly doubt there were separate takes- pretty sure they're the same performance. And yes, the central mike was for the three channel stereo recording.

Here's an article about their recording techniques:

Addendum: here's your answer: "The center channel would feed the center track on the two stereo machines that were recording, plus the full-track (mono) machine. The tapes would be edited in three-track,..."

 

thanks, that explains it /nt/, posted on January 9, 2017 at 06:37:00
michael22
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=

 

In most cases, they were the same takes - there were exceptions however, posted on January 10, 2017 at 01:19:02
Chris from Lafayette
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For instance, the mono and stereo Paray/Detroit performances of Debussy's La Mer were from different sessions, and it's pretty obvious at one point in the first movement where Debussy writes for divisi cellos up in their high register. That section is pretty badly out of tune on the mono performance, but sounds fine on the stereo performance.

 

RE: In most cases, they were the same takes - there were exceptions however, posted on January 10, 2017 at 05:42:56
Kindablue
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Over all I enjoy mono recordings really enjoy the sound I could only guess why? Maybe they took more time on the mono recordings when that is all they had just as the further back you go in audio equipment they took more time and wanted to produce a long lasting, great sounding pc of audio equipment that I know from listening experience. True to my ears.
Kindablue

 

Well, I'm kind of a multi-channel guy myself and I prefer modern equipment too - to each his own [nt] ;-), posted on January 10, 2017 at 09:55:07
Chris from Lafayette
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RE: In most cases, they were the same takes - there were exceptions however, posted on January 10, 2017 at 10:38:48
Crazy Dave
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I have quite a few recordings where I have both the stereo and the mono versions. In the mono versions, there is always more detail. I am limiting this to MLP and Shaded Dog.

Dave

 

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