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John Marks Re-Enters Oistrakh Obsession Mode

96.233.138.55

Posted on January 5, 2017 at 14:21:26
John Marks
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Location: Peoples' Democratic Republic of R.I.
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No dark conspiracy theories this time. Just trying to play back a US Decca 1954 non-RIAA 2-LP set (licensed from DG) properly.

There are two sound samples; one RIAA EQ, the other ffrr.

I would be interested in any and all reactions.

ATB,

John

 

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RE: John Marks Re-Enters Oistrakh Obsession Mode, posted on January 5, 2017 at 15:29:02
rbolaw
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Thanks, John. I liked the version with more treble better, regardless of any additional distortion that may be introduced, it's just more realistic. Does this apply to all mono American Decca LPs?

 

RE: John Marks Re-Enters Oistrakh Obsession Mode, posted on January 6, 2017 at 04:14:00
andy evans
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Early Leak preamps like the Varislope has different setting for RIAA and non-RIAA. Don't know if that helps in any way.

 

RE: John Marks Re-Enters Oistrakh Obsession Mode, posted on January 6, 2017 at 07:26:24
banpuku
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I prefer the ffrr, as the violin sounds more natural without the hi-end artifacts.

I have an EMT JPA-66 which has all the variability in the world. I am curious how your pre-amp applies the ffrr curve. Does the manual have any specifics on this?

 

It's a review-loaner preamp..., posted on January 6, 2017 at 10:11:52
John Marks
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Location: Peoples' Democratic Republic of R.I.
Joined: April 23, 2000



Hi-

The Graham Slee Revelation M is a review loaner--I do not own it.

The GS Revelation has two three-position toggles for treble cut and one for bass boost. They include a "cheat sheet" of toggle settings.

Furthermore, as you can see, the settings for RIAA are marked as such.

Both RIAA and ffrr have a bass turnover at 500 Hz, so the only difference is whether the treble toggle setting that is active is -11 dB or -13.7 dB.

Hope that helps.

john

 

Ummm, posted on January 6, 2017 at 10:19:38
John Marks
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Posts: 5609
Location: Peoples' Democratic Republic of R.I.
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Hi-

1) The "more treble" is actually "less cut in the treble that is on the LP," so, I guess when you say distortion you mean groove noise or cartridge mistracking. Yup, that is a 54-year old LP!

2) As far as I know, there are slightly different-from-each-other Decca curves up to 1953,; and then, from 1954 on to... I dunno!

Michael Fremer went on an epic tear some years ago, claiming that "ffrr" was just a trademark and not an EQ curve. Which is not true.

However, by the time Decca/London were putting out Rolling Stones stereo LPs, RIAA was the EQ curve in use. But dealing with historical mono classical LPs, there is a real difference.

Not that I am an archivist, but, I think that in this case, a Mozart violin concerto with I think pretty obviously a spot mic on the soloist in the mix, the 2.7dB treble difference is a major difference.

Certainly if one were to compare an RIAA Heifetz LP to an ffrr Oistrakh LP played back with too much treble cut, one would get an unrealistic comparison.

ATB,

John

 

RE: Ummm, posted on January 6, 2017 at 11:40:43
rbolaw
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(1) Yes, that is what I meant.
(2) I was afraid you would say that. In other words, it's a confused mess. Some of those 50s DG monos are still among my favorites. For example, Clara Haskil's Mozart concertos 19 and 27 with Fricsay. The CD reissue sucks, most likely because it isn't properly equalized. The Sanderling / LPO Rach 2nd is another.
There are some 50s mono L'Oiseau Lyre LPs some of which were reissued (dreadfully) by Nonesuch in the late 60s and early 70s, many of which were never issued on CD. I snagged a couple of the originals, only to discover they were made with non-RIAA equalization and sound very odd with ordinary modern equipment.
I don't know if it's worth $840 to deal with this problem, but it's an interesting thought.

 

RE: John Marks Re-Enters Oistrakh Obsession Mode, posted on January 6, 2017 at 12:04:14
fstein
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agree
ffrr more natural

 

Mozart .... zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz [nt], posted on January 6, 2017 at 17:20:04
Amphissa
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.

"Life without music is a mistake" (Nietzsche)

 

But notice ..., posted on January 7, 2017 at 06:46:39
rbolaw
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That Decca box includes the Brahms and Tchaikovsky concertos. The Brahms in particular is one of the best ever imho. Franz Konwitschny was a great German conductor influenced by Furtwangler (whom he played under) but whose career was sadly marred by alcoholism (his players nicknamed him "Konwhiskey"). Very underrated, I think.
If he was a hot babe and this was a high-def multi-channel download, Chris from Lafayette would be all over it.

 

However, posted on January 7, 2017 at 11:15:39
Amphissa
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Actually, I own the ffrr of that recording, as well as 2 other recordings of Oistrakh playing the Brahms and 2 others of him playing the Tchaikovsky. My comment was specifically on the Mozart.

I suppose that John selected that passage of the Mozart specifically to illustrate the audio of the orchestra. My problem is staying awake through a minute of Mozart.


"Life without music is a mistake" (Nietzsche)

 

Mistake, posted on January 7, 2017 at 15:26:57
briggs
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If "Life without music is a mistake", then life without Mozart's music is a profound mistake. Try to stay awake -- it's worth it.

 

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