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best versions of Stevie Wonder's classic albums?

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Posted on January 31, 2017 at 07:59:32
Jim Pearce
Audiophile

Posts: 20786
Joined: January 4, 2002
Hi Rez or not? I would think that for Songs in the Key of Life the Blu-ray is the way to go: inexpensive and very well reviewed. I ordered this one. Talking Book is a tough call: the Audio Fidelity CD, SHM SACD or Blu-ray? For Innervisions and Fulfillingness' First Finale I'm leaning to Audio Fidelity Gold CDs over the SHM SACDs. Thoughts?

 

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RE: best versions of Stevie Wonder's classic albums?, posted on January 31, 2017 at 10:15:37
Isaak J. Garvey
Industry Professional

Posts: 914
Location: Hollywod, CA
Joined: January 7, 2016
Very close call between the Audio Fidelity SACDs and the Japanese SHM SACDs The 24/96 and 24/192 downloads are not bad at all either.

 

RE: best versions of Stevie Wonder's classic albums?, posted on January 31, 2017 at 15:37:18
fantja
Audiophile

Posts: 10033
Location: Alabama
Joined: September 11, 2010
On CD -Jim

I have the original Tamla discs. I believe I have a MFSL gold disc or two as well. All of these sound very fine.

I have not heard any download(s) nor SHM-CD / SHM-SACD?

 

I have the original discs..., posted on January 31, 2017 at 18:12:18
Jim Pearce
Audiophile

Posts: 20786
Joined: January 4, 2002
They're pretty good. I didn't mention the MFSL as they are hard to find and expensive. I picked up the AF versions of Innervisions and Fulfillingness' locally at a good price. They sound fabulous, but then the Oppo bdp-95 is great with HDCD. I'm waiting for the 96/24 Blu-rays of Songs in the Key of Life and Talking Book.

 

RE: I have the original discs..., posted on January 31, 2017 at 18:25:03
fantja
Audiophile

Posts: 10033
Location: Alabama
Joined: September 11, 2010
Very nice! Jim

I look forward to comparing the different discs against the download.

 

RE: best versions of Stevie Wonder's classic albums?, posted on February 4, 2017 at 05:42:58
Quint
Dealer

Posts: 3643
Joined: June 21, 2003
It's hard to go wrong with either the AF golds or the SHM-SACDs. (I have both. Can't speak to the Blu-Rays.) I would go with whichever you can get for the best price. The SACDs offer a tad more insight into the recording, but it's not a dramatic difference by any stretch. Some people like the tonality of the AFs more, but for me, it's a tossup.
This is a public service announcement . . . WITH GUITARS!!!

 

no big revelations..., posted on February 4, 2017 at 08:12:10
Jim Pearce
Audiophile

Posts: 20786
Joined: January 4, 2002
So far I agree with the consensus on the AFs of Fulfillingness' and Innervisions - they sound remarkably like the original LPs, which I also have - maybe just short of transparency but they really suit the music. The Blu-ray (96/24 stereo) of Songs is just tremendous and a real bargain, too bad it's my least favourite. I'm still waiting on the Blu-ray of Talking Book.

I've never heard the MFSL discs or vinyl, but I'm happy with having gone for the least expensive options here.

 

MFSL, posted on February 4, 2017 at 08:18:25
Quint
Dealer

Posts: 3643
Joined: June 21, 2003
IMO the MFSL is one of the best redbook options for Innervisions. I still like the SACD and AF a bit better, and that's probably why I'm selling my MoFi, but it's quite good.
This is a public service announcement . . . WITH GUITARS!!!

 

RE: best versions of Stevie Wonder's classic albums?, posted on February 4, 2017 at 19:22:13
PdL
Audiophile

Posts: 7134
Location: Florida
Joined: July 29, 2001
Concerning Songs in the Key of Life, I have the original Tamla cd, the DCC cd and the Japanese SHM-SACD. The SHM-SACD delivers the most detail, while also being the most analogue-like/non-clinical sounding of the three digital versions. I found the DCC cd to be a notable improvement to the Tamla CD. But, there's only a slight improvement as you go from the DCC disc to the SHM-SACD. If you already have the DCC cd and are on the fence about shelling out more money to purchase another digital version of the album, I'd say keep your $$$ and skip the SHM-SACD.

 

You mentioned DCC. Did you mean Audio Fidelity?, posted on February 5, 2017 at 04:23:48
Quint
Dealer

Posts: 3643
Joined: June 21, 2003
As far as I know, DCC never did any Stevie Wonder titles.

But, that aside, I agree with you. If you have the AF discs, you're pretty well set. The SHM-SACDs give a tad more, but I'm not sure they're worth the $40+ a pop unless you're a fanatic.
This is a public service announcement . . . WITH GUITARS!!!

 

RE: You mentioned DCC. Did you mean Audio Fidelity?, posted on February 5, 2017 at 07:15:15
PdL
Audiophile

Posts: 7134
Location: Florida
Joined: July 29, 2001
Whoops, sorry about that - got my gold compact discs mixed up! Songs in the Key of Life is an AF effort, not DCC.

 

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