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In my late father's record collection I find a number of them are quadraphonic recordings which "should be played through an SQ decoder, but can be played effectively through any other matrix system." My Yamaha receiver has multi-surround music modes which sound artificial to me. So, one of the questions I have is which mode, if any, is closest to the original SQ quad channel encoding? So far, these recordings sound best to me in stereo even with other speakers available for surround effects.
Which includes SQ, QS and ABC Command Quad used out of phase information to synthesize rear channel information. At its best the rear channel information was vague and exact placement was not something you could rely on.
The JVC/RCA/CD-4 system was more reliable at creating rear channel information but that system had its issues also. Its not worth the effort to try and locate a genuine SQ decoder for SQ quad playback. The effect you will get won't be much better than any other rear channel approach that depends on out-of-phase information.
Back in the 1970s I spent considerable money on quad playback gear and the best you will achieve is a "sort of" effect. The CD-4 system at its best could reproduce rear channel info but it suffered from reliability issues.
To be truthful, whatever you get from a SQ LP won't be much better than the effect you can get from a stereo LP. It wasn't really that good of a system.
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Try the Hafler hookup to extract out of phase information from a stereo disc. I used this hookup more than 30 years ago and it works great. It will not work on mono discs. It is a pseudo surround hookup that can be used with two rear speakers or just one.
the one marked matrix or ambience. otherwise, try each and select the one that most seems like reality. DPL 1 r 2 is BASED on the same technology.
which discs do you have and which matrix settings are there?
I'm not sure how many quad discs total, and my father did not separate them from the rest of his collection (est. 700 or 800 total,) but there are several classical SQ recordings on the Angel label (Beethoven, Strauss, Ravel) Columbia SQ recordings by Paul Simon, Chicago, Blue Oyster Cult, and there are a few on other labels like Vanguard which have quad encoding. My father did have 4 channels set up at one time before it became the norm, but I don't remember a separate decoder, just the effect, which was remarkably enveloping. I can't get that with my current system (which was not set up by me,) and mainly for theater, not music. The Yamaha has Vienna Hall, Roxy Theater, Bottom Line venues, all channel stereo AND DPL 1 or enhanced, but none of them sound natural with records, just movies which have discrete surround. I think my problem may be that I grew up listening to music with earbuds so I'm used to L/R recordings, letting my brain interpolate the spaciousness of the venue :)
because you say your dad's system had no decoder, he probably had a quad receiver that was probably a sansui, or marantz. SQ and QS were compatible matrix systems with only slight differences. it mattered not which matrix you used on either.
the system that WASN'T compatible and had to have a demodulating decoder was CD4 or Quadradisc. you could play the record on stereo but no matrix was used to encode it. there was a 30kHz carrier signal that when demodulated, gave DISCRETE four channel playback.
if you were listening to cd4, and the stylus got a dust bunny on it, the rear channels just went away, ther being no carrier signal to decode.
some of us went with the Dynaquad ambience retrieval system which extracted the out of phase material in SQ/QS or even stereo and put it in the back. it had an attenuator to bring the rear channel level down so it wasn't dominant. in fact, i would use a stereo recording and adjust the level so as to have the rears barely detectable. then when something that should be in back, it was plainly there. try any Tomita record.
so try a stereo recording with DPL and adjust the rears to near inaudibility, THEN listen to an SQ record.
on a positive note, Vanguard label recordings are many times in QS, even if they aren't touted as 4 channel. a bonus. they probably felt no reason to have a dual catalog. sensible.
SQ and QS are based on the dynaquad circuit only with logic steering of detected rear signals.
Still got my DynaQuad in use although I drive the rears with an ancient SS McIntosh amp with meters so there's plenty of gain if I need it. A friend of mine built this stand alone unit (doesn't look like a Quadaptor anymore) and it has a null/mono detente (push/pull knob) that allows me to properly balance the rears.
And you're right about Tomita! Even on CD. I think he did make some CD-4 LPs.
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