DCC Archive Led Zeppelin cds, remaster vs. original

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Holy Zoo, Jan 2, 2002.

  1. Holy Zoo

    Holy Zoo Gort (Retired) :-)

    Location:
    Santa Cruz
    Continuing this from this thread (I didn't want to turn that thread into a Zep discussion).

    claviusb wrote:

    To which I said I have both, and would do a comparison.

    Well, I'm too lazy to go get the old Houses of the Holy from my car, so I went ahead and did a head-to-head comparison of Led Zep IV (aka Zoso, aka the Runes album).

    So, the first thing that surprised the heck out of me is that the channels are swapped! For example, the harmonica on "When the Levee Breaks" is panned right on the old copy, but is on the left on the remaster! Wow! Someone sure screwed up... but I wonder which is right?

    The remaster is also MUCH louder than the original.

    Combined, it makes it rather a challenge to compare the two, but I did!

    I feel the original sounds warmer, less harsh. For example, the jangly guitar near the beginning is a little piercing on the remaster. Also, the kick drum and toms sound more open on the original, and a little anemic on the remaster (Bonham anemic? Is that possible?).

    Again, this was really hard to do with the gain being so different and the channels swapped. I'd really like to do with again with the channels the same and a better mechanism for syncing the gain.

    [ January 02, 2002: Message edited by: Holy Zoo ]
     
  2. Gary

    Gary Nauga Gort! Staff

    Location:
    GTA, Canada
    Very weird.

    The remasters are done by Page, right?

    I just picked up the Classic vinyl of 1,2,3 & 4. I'm impressed! Do you have these, HZ? Any comments?

    Living in Calif. you would have better access to buy Classic Records (it took me months to find a dealer!).

    Now I'm glad that I did not sell off my old Zep! I'll have to pick up the remastered CDs and ABC all my versions.
     
  3. pauljones

    pauljones Forum Chef

    Location:
    columbia, sc
    From what I have read in ICE magazine years ago, the first round of Zeppelin cd's were made from first generation album EQ'd masters. sO, the sound may have not been optimized to the cd format, but it may have been closer to what people had been accustomed to hearing. And, as we all know, cd's in the 1980's were not geared for high volume. This appears to be a debate of subjective nature--which type of sound do you prefer?
     
  4. Holy Zoo

    Holy Zoo Gort (Retired) :-)

    Location:
    Santa Cruz
    Yeah, that's what I thought. I'm pretty surprised that the old one I have sounds warmer and bassier. Shouldn't the ones from LP masters sound brighter?

    [ January 02, 2002: Message edited by: Holy Zoo ]
     
  5. Alan T

    Alan T Active Member

    Location:
    Phoenix
    You are entitled to your opinions but when I read stuff like this it makes me question the validity of this board. The original Led Zeppelin 4 is one of the worst CD masters that WEA put out. Listen to the tape hiss on “The Battle of Evermore”. Oh yea, I want all my CD’s mastered from 4 or 5th generation German LP masters, it sounds better that way.
     
  6. Unknown

    Unknown Guest

    Again, I thought we had all (acting independently, of course) come to the consensus that all 80s CDs are, in fact, superior.
     
  7. Unknown

    Unknown Guest

    i have to say that the original zep CD's were crap. what is obvious is that the classic records reissues are fantastic and way better than anything out on CD, remaster or otherwise. they have really made my year for listening to my favourite band i still have a few more to get (need physical and houses of the holy) and am hoping they will bring out the "song remains the same".

    i will have to check out on the LP whether the harmonica is panned left or right.
     
  8. John Buchanan

    John Buchanan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    Remastering from the LP EQ master involves re-equalising the sound, the album would be unbelievably trebly if it was cut flat from that tape - the RIAA curve used to master LPs means that the albums are cut from a tape with lots of treble and very little bass, with a phono section in your preamplilier equalising it back to "flat" with an inverse equalisation (ie bass boost and treble cut).
    What equalisation is used during remastering from these tapes depends on the ears of the remastering engineer,so you can't tell what it will sound like from the fact that the LP EQ tape was used. As Steve has mentioned before, however, it is easier to add treble and bass than it is to attenuate it.Also, the LP EQ tapes are one further generation removed from the flat stereo master.
    Although I haven't heard the pre-remastered LZ CDs, tape hiss is a good sign, as long as both have been remastered from the same tape. NoNoise = less sound. More comments would be appreciated about detailed sonic comparisons.
    If anyone has the Houses of the Holy pre-remaster, does it have the quiet noise just before the first note of No Quarter as per the vinyl? :confused:
     
  9. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Madison, WI
    No, that's not true. The RIAA curve is *not* on the LP cutting tape, it's applied in real time during cutting. Things would sound REALLY bad if those tapes had the RIAA curve on them...
     
  10. pigmode

    pigmode Active Member

    Location:
    HNL
    Wasn't there supposed to be other technical glitches in the first LZ CD reissues? Stuff like missing parts in the beginning of a certain song (a cough). Anyway that was the hype that came with the JP crop circle boxed set.
     
  11. Sckott

    Sckott Hand Tighten Only.

    Location:
    Hyannis Ma
    Led Zeppelin I sounded amazing on CD the 1st time around (II sounded "ok"), but since then, sounds a bit better on the 1990 remaster, as do most every Zeppelin CD. The original CDs sounded dry and dull with lots of technical flubs, possibly inherit in the safty masters used, and I'm sure there were at least 100 for "IV".

    If you really want something heavy and eye-and-ear pleasing, yes, definately get the Classic Recs. I'm not sure if they're up to "In Through The Out Door", but that should be soon.

    For those looking for digital Zep, go get the remasters. They sound very good, even today, even on tubes or high-powered SS.

    Who knows? We might see the appearence of Led Zeppelin II on DVD-A pretty soon??
     
  12. pigmode

    pigmode Active Member

    Location:
    HNL
    rrrrrrrrrrrr

    [ January 02, 2002: Message edited by: pigmode ]
     
  13. Gary

    Gary Nauga Gort! Staff

    Location:
    GTA, Canada
    I'm not sure about *all* '80's CDs! I thought most of us seem to think that *most* of the original CD releases had advantages - and were generally preferred - over the current remasters.

    Although the remasters are clearer, they are brighter, "enhanced" to blast out of your speakers, are *wonderfully* compressed and clinically clearer. And most have the Breath of Life removed. But you know this already, right? Sorry for repeating it... .

    But some of the original CD releases had their own problems. Very dull, lackluster and "too" flat. For example, some people were thrilled with the remasters of BOC since the previous CD releases are dull (no base, poor treb.) And I was never impressed with the original Doors CDs - thought they were VERY dull. And I am NOT impressed with the current Doors remasters. Thankfully, DCC solved the Doors problems for us! :)
     
  14. Grant

    Grant Proud Nerd

    Simply put, MOST of the 80s Zepp CDs don't sound like first generation tapes. I prefer the remasters.

    The main difference between current CDs and their 80s counterparts is that the volume is usually maximized to some degree. Barring everything else the dynamic range would be preferable, EXCEPT that most other things limited the dynamics like bad tapes, bad converters, EQ...

    All engineers have to do nowadays is just back off the volume maximizers and things would be better.
     
  15. Dave

    Dave Esoteric Audio Research Specialist™

    Location:
    Canada
    I think I'll stick with my 80's Zeps. Why you ask? Because Jimmy Pages guitar sound is much better. On the remasters there's no breath of life to it but it is on the 80's cds.
     
  16. John Buchanan

    John Buchanan Forum Resident

    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    Thanks for the correction Luke. I presumed that the equalisation would be applied to a tape rather than having stuff done real time. What then is the actual difference between a flat master and an LP EQ tape?
    :confused:
    Incidentally, the cough was missing from the end of "In My Time of Dying"..... rather appropriate place to have a nice phlegmy cough don't you think ;)
     
  17. Unknown

    Unknown Guest

    Again, what is wrong with the Doors remasters available now? I've heard the all the second issues, the remasters, and the available DCCs. The latter two are superior to the second issues, but I think the DCCs are only slightly better than the BG remasters overall.

    [ January 02, 2002: Message edited by: Patrick M ]
     
  18. Gary

    Gary Nauga Gort! Staff

    Location:
    GTA, Canada
    Really?

    I only have Morrison Hotel (papersleeve, made in Germany) but I thought it was pretty over emphasised on the top end. So I avoided the new remasters.

    But with the potential completion of the Doors catalogue on DCC, I really don't see me getting the remasters at this stage anyway. *shrug*
     
  19. Unknown

    Unknown Guest

    Yep. In short, I think the last batch of stock remasters is "good enough" for most people.

    Someone who has the DCCs and the remasters (e.g., if your name is "Jeff Partyka" or "Luke Pacholski"), feel free to comment. :D
     
  20. Holy Zoo

    Holy Zoo Gort (Retired) :-)

    Location:
    Santa Cruz
    Ah, come on Alan, lighten up. :) One person's opinion can't possibly validate or invalidate the entire board.



    I just popped in my old cd and the remaster and compared the tape hiss on Battle of Evermore - they sound about the same to me. Moreover, to my ears it sounds like it's on the master tape.

    I'm not doubting that you think the old IV sounds like crap though. What I'm wondering now is... was there perhaps a quiet remaster somewhere along the line? Because mine really doesn't sound like crap. Honest. (Or maybe my ears really do suck!) :D

    Sckott - you said there are a hundred technical flubs on the old IV, can you list a couple so I can go listen for them?

    Also, does anyone still have their copy? Can they check for the reveresed channels thing between the old and new? (harmonica on right on WTLB on the old, harmonica on the left on the remaster).

    [ January 02, 2002: Message edited by: Holy Zoo ]
     
  21. Pat

    Pat Forum Detective

    Location:
    Tampa, FL
    HZ SEZ,
    "Also, does anyone still have their copy? Can they check for the reveresed channels thing between the old and new? (harmonica on right on WTLB on the old, harmonica on the left on the remaster)."

    I have the old "Made In USA By WEA" issue and the Harmonica is on the LEFT! How 'bout the German issue, though? Wasn't that the FIRST release!
     
  22. Holy Zoo

    Holy Zoo Gort (Retired) :-)

    Location:
    Santa Cruz
    Whoa, so my Zep IV is the only one with the flipped channels.

    Ok... lets compare catalog numbers:

    On the back of the jewel box in the top right:
    19129-2
    Europe: 250 008
    WE 835

    On the actual CD:
    Manufactured in Germany by Record Service Gmbh, Alsdorf

    So... do I have a German copy which is a different mastering than the domestic AND remaster?
     
  23. lukpac

    lukpac Forum Resident

    Location:
    Madison, WI
    I've got the Botnick/Grundman box set, as well as a CD-R of the DCC "The Doors". Haven't compared them yet. On my list to.

    My main complaint with the Grundman s/t is some distortion in the right channel. Don't know if that's the remastering or the tape, though.

    I really don't think my pre-remaster s/t sounds that bad, actually.
     
  24. Pat

    Pat Forum Detective

    Location:
    Tampa, FL
    HOLY SEZ,
    Ok... lets compare catalog numbers:

    On the back of the jewel box in the top right:
    19129-2
    Europe: 250 008
    WE 835

    >>My jewel box has a "bar code" in that corner that says 7567-80084-2
    Although, the spine of the jewel case has that same info that you state, EXCEPT: WE 835!

    On the actual CD:
    Manufactured in Germany by Record Service Gmbh, Alsdorf

    >>My CD says:Made In U.S.A. by WEA Manufacturing Inc

    >>Additionally, the "ring area" says 19129-2 SRC07

    ...and now...back to you HOLY ZOO!.....

    :D
     
  25. Holy Zoo

    Holy Zoo Gort (Retired) :-)

    Location:
    Santa Cruz
    Pat - can I send you a CDR of my copy of LedZep IV, so you can compare it with your two versions (I presume that you have the remaster too?)

    jeff
     

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