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  • 2004 Remastered CDs are weird...

    Hello everyone,

    (I don't know if this is the perfect place to post this, but it is something that bothered me to no end)

    I was really pleased with hearing the 2004 remastered versions of BS, Paranoid and Heaven and Hell, so I decided to buy the rest of the Ozzy era CDs from this set of remasters. I couldn't find the 2004 versions new so I decided to buy them on Discogs, starting with Master Of Reality and Vol4. But it seems that every CD is some kind of different pressing, even though they are all SMRCD-031 etc. What I mean with this is that there are a few differences in the actual CDs.
    The biggest offender is Vol 4. The middle ring on the CD has additional printing on it, like this 1996 version:

    http://www.coveralia.com/caratulas/B...olume-4-CD.php

    Wheras on sites like Discogs the CD looks like all the other 2004 remasters:

    http://www.discogs.com/viewimages?release=1089963

    The print on the CD is also larger.
    Its seems impossible to find any information on the web about this kind of stuff, so I hope the Sabbath experts know anything about this.

    Two other things I've noticed:
    -Black Sabbath and Master of Reality have less clear printing on the CDs than the others
    -Master of Reality has a darker purple color on the CDs than the other CDs
    -Vol 4. also has different text on the inner ring of the CD, all the other ones mention Universal, Vol 4. doesn't. It mentions vdcgroup.com

    Vol 4. is such a odd one out, it just has to be a different print. Anyone interested in taking a look at their 2004 remasters, because I find it kind of intersting...
    Last edited by TheNoseMan; 09-24-2013, 02:12 PM.

  • #2
    Okay this just got weirder. Now I've listened to the album with headphones it seems that there are two different masters on the disc. Some songs are much louder and sound clearer than other tracks. Also, there appear to be different versions of Vol 4. At least one version has the left and right audio flipped. The version I have is the one that seems the least common (judging from a quick inspection on youtube.) I also was a bit cautious about it being printed by vdcgroup. There is only one source I can find that says there is a legit version of this album printed by them, and that's some German webshop. I am kind of on the verge of buying some more Vol 4.s for cheap.

    Comment


    • #3
      Channel flips are a drag but that's the least of the problems on the Castle remaster of Vol. 4. The CD was no-noised to remove tape hiss (bad idea) and EQd too brightly. Far better options are (in order of best, most natural sound):

      1. SHM-SACD (a flat transfer of the analog master tape with no intervention). Need a SACD player for this one.
      2. 1986 Castle (NELCD or CLACD are the same)
      3. Sanctuary 2009 edition
      "It is not opinion that Ozzy peaked on Sabotage, it is a measurable fact."
      -WTB

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks Jeff,
        Hmm... It appears that it is practically the same as the 1996 Castle version. It's not a very good version indeed. Although the 2009 version is mastered a bit loud I think, I heard some of it and thought it sounded pretty good. I am not really an expert on SACDs, although I believe I have a few.
        Kind of a shame, since I like to have multiple albums from one band from the same series. Maybe I'll go for a boxset or something. Or maybe the japanese SACDs, I like LP-replicas... Too many choices...
        Just out of curiosity, are the rest of the 2004 versions a bit good?

        Damn, those SACDs are expensive though...
        Also, the Black Box doesn't use the same remasters as the 1996/2004 ones right?
        Man I wish BS didn't have do many rereleases... :/
        Last edited by TheNoseMan; 09-26-2013, 07:34 AM.

        Comment


        • #5
          The 1996 Castle remasters are the source of the 2004 Sanctuary versions. Some may have been tweaked a little but that's the source. Waste of time.

          Japanese mini lp CDs are also all a waste of time. All taken from UK Castle/Sanctuary masters.

          Black Box is horrible. Loud, compressed and overcooked with EQ. Avoid.

          The SACDs that were mastered in the UK are fantastic. Sure, they are about $50 each, but you have to decide whether $50 seems reasonable for a hi-res copy of a Sabbath master tape. S/T, MoR, Vol. 4 and SBS are all definitive versions as far as digital is concerned. The Paranoid SACD was done in Japan from a copy tape and mastered with too much treble, IMO. Not recommended. Heaven and Hell on SACD was also mastered in Japan and is quite bright. The Deluxe Edition by Andy Pearce smokes it.

          Also, do not overlook some of the early Warner Brothers CDs, which are still in print and cheap! Sabotage on WB is outstanding! An essential CD to own. Same with Mob Rules. The Warner CDs tend to be a little on the bright side but they are so cheap that I would also recommend getting TE and NSD on Warner.

          The only Japanese CD I really recommend is the early Paranoid 33PD-353. It sounds fantastic. It also has most of the first album but omits "Warning." The later Japan CDs like the 23PD series are mostly just copied from the WB masterings or when they aren't, they are inferior to them or other good versions.

          The West German Vertigo CDs sell for huge money but mostly because they are collectible. Most of them sound like crap. Supercharged with smiley-faced EQ which can sound cool for a few minutes but over the course of an entire album can really wear on your ears. Those discs (as far as the Ozzy years) have no midrange at all. The Dio albums were better because they were done by Gert Van Hoeyen instead of Hans Brethouwer but again, there are better versions.

          This thread is a very helpful one. I recommend it highly. It has been going for years now so you may want to skip towards the end for the latest recommendations.

          Pt. I

          http://forums.stevehoffman.tv/thread...-albums.116489

          Pt. II

          http://forums.stevehoffman.tv/thread...s-part2.262947
          "It is not opinion that Ozzy peaked on Sabotage, it is a measurable fact."
          -WTB

          Comment


          • #6
            Ah yes, I remember seeing that thread some time ago!
            I would love to own the SACDs someday, but at this time I don't have the money for it. I guess I'll go for 2009/1986 CDs.
            Too bad the Black Box isn't any good, since it looks cool and I like boxsets. A damn shame that most new remasters seem to be too compressed. Well, I guess the situation with Sabbath is at least better than with Judas Priest CDs...
            Thanks again.

            Comment


            • #7
              DOC JOHN called me ans asked me to leave a message on this thread.

              He said:
              He agrees with everything stated about the SACDs except the The Japan releases. He said that if played on a High Res system you can really hear the seperation between the instruments.

              He also said to tell THE NOSE MAN to go pick out 2 of the SACDs and he will pay for them for you!! Message him. His user name is BACKTOEDEN and he will give you the details.


              I hope I got the details correct Doc.
              Gotta run, crazy busy day.
              www.downtrendmetal.com

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by axeman_12656 View Post
                DOC JOHN called me ans asked me to leave a message on this thread.

                He said:
                He agrees with everything stated about the SACDs except the The Japan releases. He said that if played on a High Res system you can really hear the seperation between the instruments.

                He also said to tell THE NOSE MAN to go pick out 2 of the SACDs and he will pay for them for you!! Message him. His user name is BACKTOEDEN and he will give you the details.


                I hope I got the details correct Doc.
                Gotta run, crazy busy day.
                Separation of instruments is of small consequence when something has too much treble.

                The Paranoid and H&H SACDs suffer from this, IMO. The rest are superb.
                "It is not opinion that Ozzy peaked on Sabotage, it is a measurable fact."
                -WTB

                Comment


                • #9
                  @AXE , thank you brother so much , I hadn't had the chance to read this thread , but since i'm a sound nut , someone from "the listen" called and read it to me , and yourself and OID are the only 2 I could call to make a post here before tonight , and I wanted to help out THE NOSE MAN ..... also AXE you are class , being part of the Joe S donation fund on "the listen" board ....God Bless You brother!!

                  @THE NOSE MAN , pick out 2 of any SHM SACD's from Japan , order them , and when you receive them leave me a message with your address and how much they were and I will send you a check.....ENJOY!!!! ....there all truly fantastic , including the SHM CD of 13!!! ...or as Jeff said get 2 of the SACD's from the UK , just awesome sound quality!!

                  @JEFF , of all people I don't want to partly disagree with is you , you without doubt seem to have a true knowledge of sound , and I tend to agree with 90 percent of your posts on the sound reproduction subject.... And I also agree with every word of your 3 above post , ACCEPT for 3 points , BUT , they are to me anyway , 3 very important points .... and again were talking splitting hairs here...

                  AND Richard at Vandersteen , Dave at Wilson , Garth at Clear Audio .... I know your all going to not only read this but end up dis agreeing with this statement , and that's OK .... I can't help if you don't accept the truth , but fact is even over vinyl in this case , through a true elite DCS Vivaldi Digital Playback System , the SHM SACD from Japan of both Paranoid and Heaven n Hell are the absolute best software available in the WORLD today for true musical separation between instruments.... PERIOD!!!

                  AND in the case of a band like Sabbath , there isn't a more important quality one can find in a recording .... it allows IOMMI to breath true life through your playback system , Geezer to come alive on WAR PIGS and HEAVEN N HELL like never before even more so then a $150,000 Clear Audio Reference turntable playing a true master vinyl copy of each song , so sorry Garth ... and yes Dave even more so then a reel to reel transfer of each recording!! ....AS FOR THE DRUMS with this extra separation of instruments , LOOOOOOOOOOK OUT AMAZING!!!! ... Bill Ward is in your room , the Martin Birch production of H N H is presented "no where better" then on the SHM SACD of this recording!!

                  OZZY and DIO benefit the most from what Jeff is calling "too much treble" or "brightness" , AND JEFF IS CORRECT , only if , and for most I guess this would be the case , you don't have a true 20hz to 20khz playback rig , AND MOST PEOPLE DO NOT , even when they think they may , so they may misinterpret the extra air as "brightness" , JEFF I'M NOT SAYING THIS IS THE CASE WITH YOU! .... The extra sense of air even in a system that goes up to 100khz , beyond human hearing , STILL BENEFITS greatly in this case , cause "YES" , regardless of what some may think , WE AS HUMANS CAN FEEL / SENSE THE EXTRA AIR , and that "too much treble artifact" goes away and becomes a gorgeous bloom of life on the upper registers of the music and human voice , taking OZZY and esp DIO to an entirely different platform of understanding through these 2 SHM SACD's , beautiful!!!


                  ha , ya I know i'm wacked out , but I love sound quality , and there is NO BETTER sound , then the sound of BLACK SABBATH!!!!


                  God Bless guys

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by BACK TO EDEN View Post

                    OZZY and DIO benefit the most from what Jeff is calling "too much treble" or "brightness" , AND JEFF IS CORRECT , only if , and for most I guess this would be the case , you don't have a true 20hz to 20khz playback rig , AND MOST PEOPLE DO NOT , even when they think they may , so they may misinterpret the extra air as "brightness" , JEFF I'M NOT SAYING THIS IS THE CASE WITH YOU! .... The extra sense of air even in a system that goes up to 100khz , beyond human hearing , STILL BENEFITS greatly in this case , cause "YES" , regardless of what some may think , WE AS HUMANS CAN FEEL / SENSE THE EXTRA AIR , and that "too much treble artifact" goes away and becomes a gorgeous bloom of life on the upper registers of the music and human voice , taking OZZY and esp DIO to an entirely different platform of understanding through these 2 SHM SACD's , beautiful!!!

                    I think the original UK Vertigo LP of Paranoid is the standard by which the album is best judged. It was bassy, warm and super powerful. In the 80s, the original Castle CD and the original Japanese CDs that were issued sounded like this. Very dark tonality. The SHM-SACD sounds nothing like this. It is more treble heavy. If you like this type of sound, better to just buy the WB CD for $5 and save yourself some cash, IMO.

                    Hitoshi Takiguchi has never mastered anything I've heard worth a damn, and his Paranoid SACD is no exception. Sure, it's got "detail," but that's mostly because of all that treble! I bet in a blind test many couldn't tell his version from the old Warner Brothers CD except the Warner has volume shifts on "War Pigs" that are a complete joke. But tonality-wise? Quite similar.

                    Heaven and Hell was done later by Manubu Matsamura. I like his work very much. His version of Heaven and Hell may just be a result of a copy tape that was EQd for some old Japanese LP and wasn't adjusted, or maybe the masters are brighter than I'd like. I have no idea but I far prefer Andy Pearce's Deluxe Edition for this one. Beefy, full sound without all that top end sizzle that just burns your ears after a while.

                    While systems vary, I think what I'm talking about is much more about taste. The idea that somebody needs a super snazzy system to hear these differences is just silly, IMO. They are mastering and/or source differences. If anything, when something is too treble heavy then the more expensive and "revealing" the system the worse that's going to sound.

                    To reiterate, the following SACDs are essential, IMO. I'm a bit surprised any Sabbath nut who is crazy enough about the band to spend time here would think twice about these:

                    s/t
                    Master Of Reality
                    Vol. 4
                    Sabbath Bloody Sabbath

                    Basically, these are as close as you'll likely ever get to owning a copy of the master tapes to some of the most important rock albums ever recorded. Even buying used on eBay might help if money is an issue. These SACDs are essential for any CD listener, IMO. Vinyl enthusiasts probably needn't bother if they have pressings they already covet.

                    Also, the Master of Reality Deluxe Edition is sensational. Very close to the SACD plus you get fantastic, unreleased tracks. If money is an issue, I'd advise at least springing for this which shouldn't be more than about twenty bucks.
                    Last edited by Jeff; 09-26-2013, 09:20 PM.
                    "It is not opinion that Ozzy peaked on Sabotage, it is a measurable fact."
                    -WTB

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I bought the Black Box with the money I got for my 14th birthday and I've been happy with it since.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by 62_SG View Post
                        I bought the Black Box with the money I got for my 14th birthday and I've been happy with it since.
                        I wish I bought that weird when he was new. EBay is swamped with fake knockoffs of it now

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          , got the text , and yes i know it is late , BUT the subject matter outside of Christ , Family and Health is everything I LOVE .... 2 chan , sound quality and Sabbath all wrapped up in one .... so real fast..


                          Originally posted by Jeff View Post
                          I think the original UK Vertigo LP of Paranoid is the standard by which the album is best judged. It was bassy, warm and super powerful.
                          Many would agree with this , as do I .... BUT in no way for separation of notes between instruments , and YES a high quality system makes ALL the difference .... The vinyl would win on 80 percent of average rigs (not an insult , but the truth) ... even in separation of notes , BUT not in a big rig contest ... when all else is equal , no contest here FOR the air between notes , shm sacd is all over the vinyl..

                          Originally posted by Jeff View Post
                          Hitoshi Takiguchi has never mastered anything I've heard worth a damn, and his Paranoid SACD is no exception. Sure, it's got "detail," but that's mostly because of all that treble! I bet in a blind test many couldn't tell his version from the old Warner Brothers CD
                          Again with Hitoshi many would agree , as do I .... "all that treble" , and graphs would prove your point , many of us have gone here before , and did the measurements ourselves , BUT again being system dependent , makes all the difference in the world , and this is where the "revealing" theory fails .... With the voice on both these masters , THE BETTER THE RIG , again no contest .... when all else is equal , these sacd's flat out (no pun intended) deliver in spades!! ....details and treble are 2 different phenomenon's ...

                          Depends on who is taking that "blind test" .... outside of the fade in / fade out ... most may fail , but there is a few acute listeners who would get it correct every time ..the sacd's in these 2 cases are head n shoulders above the WB's..


                          Originally posted by Jeff View Post
                          If anything, when something is too treble heavy then the more expensive and "revealing" the system the worse that's going to sound.
                          I know you don't agree , and that's ok , i'm sure there is many who would agree with you , but even with the measurements backing you up , and they do , again I've done them my self ..... the transfer of the Art of Sound through a true 20 / 20 , DOES NOT agree with logic in this case , CAUSE THE BETTER THE SYSTEM WITH THESE SACD's , THE FAR BETTER THE SEPERATION OF NOTES , the single most important sound element when breaking down a band like Sabbath..... "revealing" in this case , is revealed with superior sound in the upper registers of the music , with accurate beautiful space .... NOT compressed "bright" treble , that may be felt on a less revealing rig ... not source dependent in this case ... the air is there , the "ULTRA WIDE BAND WIDTH" of true high end sound reveals this in all its glory..


                          Originally posted by Jeff View Post

                          To reiterate, the following SACDs are essential, IMO. I'm a bit surprised any Sabbath nut who is crazy enough about the band to spend time here would think twice about these:

                          s/t
                          Master Of Reality
                          Vol. 4
                          Sabbath Bloody Sabbath
                          100 percent AGREE!! ...100 percent AGREE about Andy , delux heaven n hell!!! .....100 percent AGREE about MOR delux!!! ...I do believe the SACD's to be superior on every level , but the delux cd's are marvelous!!! ....I also believe your correct about taste , BUT fried sound is fried sound , and this isn't the case here , and without doubt your correct you don't need a super jazzy system to hear the differences , but sometimes one does need a super jazzy system to hear the "correct" differences...



                          Jeff , I just love the subject matter.... And was hoping to help THENOSEMAN have some Sabbath fun!!! You were just an extra bonus to true intellectual convo on our perceived differences in sound..


                          God Bless man

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Wow..... I am speechless!

                            I'm going to order two SACDs as soon as I can (probably this evening, which since I live in Holland probably isn't the same time as your evening). And if there's ever anything I can do in return, you just tell me.
                            I honestly don't know what to say, except for THANK YOU!!!

                            Guess I'll go find a good place to hook my system up!

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