Here's the background. In an interview in Audio Magazine, Moses Asch pf
Folkways records said that he had had some LPs of historical importance
-- particularly in the Ethnic Folkways series -- cut flat, rather than
using the usual pre-emphasis curves. He said he did that so that future
generations could play them without messing around with de-emphasis.
When I interviewed Peter Bartók, who cut a lot of records for Folkways,
I asked him about this. He said he never heard of such a thing.
Well, I may have run across one of those records. I transferred it flat
(no RIAA), declicked it in Izotope Rx, then started messing with the EQ.
I tried LF de-emphasis at 500Hz (the RIAA standard) and 629Hz (suggested
for pre-RIAA Folkways records by several sources, including an old ARSC
journal. Both sounded horribly boomy. I tried doing a 1st-order HF
rolloff at 1,580Hz, and with that compensation (no LF de-emphasis,
1,580Hz HF rolloff) what I heard sounded believable, if not exactly hi-fi.
This album was P433, "Maori Songs of New Zealand", dated 1952; it's
entirely field recordings.
My question: have any of you run across anything like this -- a Folkways
LP which plays back more accurately without LF de-emphasis?
Mr. Bartók suggested to me in our interview that early LPs may not
have used formal pre-emphasis, because the resonances of the cutter head
would have produced a rising HF response. So I'm wondering if this LP
was cut that way -- no formal HF pre-emphasis (but a peaky cutter head),
no LF pre-emphasis?
By the way, other Folkways LPs I've transferred (including "Songs and
Dances of Norway", which had its own issues, mainly with recording
speed) hewed to the RIAA curve -- at least, closely enough to sound okay
when played back with it.
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