Matthew, please fix the reply-to parameter in your e-mail, so when one replies to your posts they
default to the ARSCList and not to you!
About your points ...
I think Jamie was talking about archiving valuable, high-fidelity music masters, not stuff like oral
histories or amateur recordings from a folk club (although those kinds of recordings can sometimes
sparkle more than ever thought if put through the kind of playback and time-alignment that Jamie
described). Jamie's point was, I think, these tapes are getting older and more fragile by the day.
They shouldn't be played just to come out with some new version of a quicky, inaccurate remaster.
Because they are valuable and fragile, and because budgets are tight, the money should be found for
an expert playback and Plangent's time-alignment treatment, and then keep that highly accurate,
high-resolution transfer in the vault. Having read Gary Galo's excellent article about RIAA
de-emphasis, analog vs. digital, I happen to favor doing the NAB or CCIR de-emphasis in the analog
domain, but otherwise I agree with Jamie about the value of a highly-accurate (both EQ and speed)
playback. A mastering guy can then take the high-resolution digital file and color/process to his
If you want to hear what the method Jamie described can yield, check out the new Grateful Dead
Studio Albums package at HDTracks. If you have some extra cash, also download the stand-alone
version of "American Beauty," which I think is from the mid-2000's Rhino remaster. There are
differences, great and small, and more differences show up the more carefully you listen. Dave
Glasser wrote a detailed description of how he did this new remastering:
Here's the page for the stand-alone "American Beauty":
The differences I described are also very clear in the new remaster vs. the stand-alone
One final note. As you've probably noticed over the years, I'm a huge advocate of the trusty old
CardDeluxe PCI interface, and I still have two of them installed in my older DAW. However, I
upgraded to a Lynx Hilo for my newer DAW, and it's a whole different level of quality. I still
almost always work in 96/24, so I can do 1:1 comparisons right off the DAWs. There is a big audible
difference, the Lynx has more detail. I also compared by playing back the SPDIF out of the
CardDeluxe through the Lynx, and the Lynx still comes out slightly ahead. I had to listen very
carefully on headphones to hear the differences, I'll admit, which indicates just how good
CardDeluxe's late 90s technology was. It may be a mute point anyway since the PCI buss is gone and
CardDeluxe doesn't make the 2-channel cards anymore. My larger point is that there is a new
generation of ADC's and DAW's that are another step forward in resolution and transparency.
-- Tom Fine
----- Original Message -----
From: "Matthew Sohn" <[log in to unmask]>
To: <[log in to unmask]>
Sent: Thursday, October 10, 2013 11:21 PM
Subject: Re: [ARSCLIST] a prime case of why subjective reviews of audio gear are USELESS
> "John Chester worked out a deemph circuit that coupled with the Pp/flux heads is flatter than an
> ATR or Studer, or any other aftermarket piece we could get a look at. That was the gig. I don't
> want to deliver a piece that colors the archival copy. Wanna master? Have fun, use tools and
> taste. Otherwise, do nothing but deliver, accurately."
> So happy to hear that you have made such progress in capturing the original intent of the
> I feel severely inadequate operating as I do with a mere Studer A-80 and a Card Deluxe..
> * The clients I have are happy
> * I can't afford to acquire the technology you have
> * 90% of the material I work with doesn't matter
> * The 10% that does matter, I will happily refer to you