Pet shop boys reissues

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by fozl1986, Feb 7, 2015.

  1. ukozcd

    ukozcd Well-Known Member

    Are you saying tracking down the CD Singles is impossible?

    Maybe it's your budget but these can be found quite easily between ebay and discogs.
  2. jeffmo789

    jeffmo789 Give The Gift of Music!

    New England
    Just wait until @c-eling busts out the charts and graphs...... :D
    Scottb, c-eling, jamesc and 2 others like this.
  3. friendofafriend

    friendofafriend Well-Known Member

    South Jordan, UT
    I've learned a lot from this thread in that I didn't know my 1986 UK Please cd was mastered with pre-emphasis until now. I don't know a lot about pre-emphasis, but from what I've read in this thread and other places, it sounds like accounting for it involves a filter that is applied on playback either digitally before d to a conversion or in analog circuitry after d to a conversion. It seems to me that this would imply that the actual sound you would hear when playing this Please cd could vary depending on which player/software you use to play it and the specific characteristics of the filter applied? I seriously doubt that this would be uniform across all hardware and software that is used for cd playback.

    I know this has nothing to do with the thread topic, except the question of whether the new remaster is actually the best cd version you can find. If non-remastered Please cds exist without pre-emphasis but the original digital master contains pre-emphasis, how was a cd without pre-emphasis created? Is there a source of the original digital master without pre-emphasis, or did someone apply compensation to the pre-emphasis digital master and make a new digital version? And if so was the compensation done digitally, or was it done with analog circuitry and re-sampled? I'm very curious now about that.
    jsayers likes this.
  4. anorak2

    anorak2 Well-Known Member

    Berlin, Germany
    Doesn't "tracking down" these days mean hunting on ebay or discogs for everyone? The era of the large record store that stocks "everything" is long gone, even in a place like London.
    jsayers likes this.
  5. anorak2

    anorak2 Well-Known Member

    Berlin, Germany

    No, the behaviour of the filter is standardised.
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  6. c-eling

    c-eling Forum Resident

    I don't have a Japan lp of Please, but my old US lp sounds like a dub EQ wise to the US PE disc (once the EQ is corrected)-Which would make sense as they were both probably sourced from the same master they were given.
    The Japan TOCP does not sound like the EQ'd PE disc so when they went back to whatever masters they had (Proper EQ added this time) it may have been sourced from whatever they used for the old Japan lp.
    I do agree with Low-Life, even the properly EQ'd US Qwest carries a certain 'brightness' to it. Same with the various PE discs I have even when properly EQ'd. The UK DMM cut is nice.
    jamesc and portlandjulian like this.
  7. c-eling

    c-eling Forum Resident

    For a couple, 2009's 'Story' is about it.

    Analyzed: Pet Shop Boys / Story - 25 Years Of Hits

    DR Peak RMS Duration Track
    DR17 -0.01 dB -19.11 dB 7:04 01-West End Girls (10'' Mix)
    DR12 -0.01 dB -14.29 dB 4:40 02-Paninaro (7'' Mix)
    DR8 0.00 dB -10.96 dB 7:41 03-It's a Sin [Disco Mix]
    DR14 -0.01 dB -15.51 dB 4:19 04-What Have I Done To Deserve This? (7'' Mix)
    DR11 -0.01 dB -14.59 dB 4:15 05-Jealousy (7'' Mix)
    DR13 -0.01 dB -14.25 dB 4:51 06-Being Boring (7'' Mix)
    DR9 -0.14 dB -10.78 dB 5:02 07-Go West (7'' Mix)
    DR7 -0.03 dB -8.35 dB 4:07 08-Before (7'' Mix)
    DR6 -0.01 dB -7.08 dB 3:59 09-Home And Dry (7'' Mix)
    DR6 0.00 dB -6.75 dB 3:39 10-Flamboyant (7'' Mix)
    DR6 -0.01 dB -7.01 dB 3:43 11-Did You See Me Coming
    1998's Essential is tolerable
    Analyzed: Pet Shop Boys / Essential

    DR Peak RMS Duration Track
    DR11 -0.10 dB -13.87 dB 4:42 01-Domino Dancing (Alternative Version)
    DR9 -0.60 dB -11.18 dB 6:29 02-West End Girls (Dance Mix)
    DR9 -0.60 dB -11.93 dB 3:48 03-Opportunities - Let's Make Lots of Money (Original 7'' Version)
    DR7 -0.76 dB -9.61 dB 4:40 04-Paninaro (7'' Version)
    DR8 -0.90 dB -10.45 dB 4:48 05-That's My Impression (7'' Version)
    DR10 -0.10 dB -12.14 dB 6:47 06-We All Feel Better in the Dark (Extended Mix)
    DR10 -0.10 dB -13.48 dB 5:20 07-It Couldn't Happen Here (LP Version)
    DR10 -0.10 dB -11.87 dB 4:20 08-It's Alright (7'' Version)
    DR11 -0.10 dB -12.49 dB 4:46 09-Left to My Own Devices (7'' Version)
    DR11 -0.10 dB -12.57 dB 6:28 10-In the Night (Remix)
    DR11 -0.10 dB -13.09 dB 3:36 11-Two Divided by Zero (LP Version)
    DR9 -0.90 dB -12.17 dB 6:48 12-Love Comes Quickly (Dance Mix)
    DR10 -0.10 dB -12.53 dB 10:40 13-Being Boring (Extended Version)
    portlandjulian and Cowboy Kim like this.
  8. friendofafriend

    friendofafriend Well-Known Member

    South Jordan, UT
    I realize the intended behavior is standardized, but I can't imagine the real world is that simple. If it is an analog filter, there is no way there is not quality/random variations across different manufactures. In the digital domain, I've found online discussions about the details of the formula and the algorithm that seem to definitely indicate that different approaches have been tried.

    For example, I found this excerpt here:

    "This emphasis feature was the biggest reason why different CD players sounded different when playing back the same CD, or DAT machines differed playing back the same DAT tape. The digital part and the conversion to analog were basically the same in all of the machines. The de-emphasis circuit was implemented in the analog domain using the least expensive circuit to perform the operation. There was high-end EQ on the output of every digital playback device, and there was no standard or calibration for how it was performed. If you played back a CD without emphasis, then all of the CD players sounded pretty much the same. If you played a CD with emphasis, then each playback device sounded very different from every other player."

    And see this older discussion on this site about digital approaches and differences:

    CD/DAT with pre-emphasis: how to de-emphasize correctly?
    anorak2, jamesc, shaboo and 1 other person like this.
  9. c-eling

    c-eling Forum Resident

    Yes, my PE Please does sound a tad different via analog out comparing with my Oppo, Onkyo and a Magnavox. Each have a different DAC as well.
    My problem with remasters (these) is the use of modern compression. I'm pretty sensitive to it unfortunately. 99% of my listening is on my big system where it's fatiguing.
    jsayers likes this.
  10. shaboo

    shaboo Forum Resident

    Bonn, Germany
    What hydrogenaudio says about pre-emphasis:

    Pre-emphasis - Hydrogenaudio Knowledgebase

    "De-emphasis was designed to be performed in the analog domain by physical electrical components. However, digital audio data can be mathematically manipulated to simulate the effect of analog signal processing, sometimes with a greater degree of accuracy than is possible with physical components, depending on the method used."

    "WaveEmph, SoX, and all of the foobar2000 plug-ins have been tested and produce nearly identical output. The differences are minuscule and inaudible."
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
    sunspot42, anorak2 and c-eling like this.
  11. krafty

    krafty Active Member

    I also got that question. My best guess (emphasis on GUESS) is that they got the same CD source and de-emphasized it.
    For that to be guessed, I picked up a copy of original 1991 Discography and analyzed 3 singles of that master against these 03 de-emphasized Please tracks.
    The results to my ears were that the tracks sound the same in Discography as the de-emphasized Please.
    So it could be that the "The Original Box" 1997 Box set with Please was properly de-emphasized in the digital domain - but just like the way you would do with SoX...

    But even in that way, doing this, I would say that Please would still not sound as intended... as I have said... that because if you get any needledrop of Please LP, against the de-emphasized Please CD, to my ears the LP sounds like the supposed to be original intended mastering.

    To get Pre-emphasis Please CD closer to the LP version, you'd need to not just apply this filter (deemph), but I feel that a bit of mediums should be removed from the source, and the treble should be boosted by 3 dB at least, with bass +1,5dB. I actually managed to do this, except removing the medium frequencies. Doing these three things will get it closer to LP sound master.

    And as the guys have been saying a few posts before - uniformity accross hardware to deliver the perfect "CD" experience, would be pratically impossible! I agree. That's why Preemphasized CDs are frustrating as hell (and yes, there is a "black-list" of them - just Google for it).
    chrrrd and anorak2 like this.
  12. krafty

    krafty Active Member

    I was just comparing original US LP, original Brazilian CD, and the new.

    2018 is following the same pattern: More bass than 2001 reissues and less bright than original, a bit brighter than 2001 reissues. I was examining more "I Want a Dog", almost sounds the same as original CD, but with a bit more of unnecessary bass. However, I did listen to "Left to my own devices 2018" and something must have gone out of control as it sounds completely muffled from other tracks. As always, the remastering mistakes keep coming in. On a track basis.

    The original CD of whatever country should be fine and preferable choice.
    The US LP also sounds VERY VERY GOOD, it's a match with the CD, if it's Mint and your equipment is decent, it's quite good. In my case, my ears do like the brightness of the Audio-Technica needle, so because of this needle, I may prefer the LP a bit more than CD by a small margin.

    You can ignore both Further Listening reissues, 2001 and 2018.
    Only get them if you consider the Bonus tracks are better mastered than on singles and 12"s.
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
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  13. bob60

    bob60 Forum Resident

    London UK
    This whole page of this thread has baffled me completely, it reminds me of science or maths books at school :D
  14. krafty

    krafty Active Member

    LOL... My man, do you live in Oz? Yes, isn't it. Mate...
    I'm not saying they're virtually non-existent.
    Yes, my budget finds hard to believe that parcels from Australia, UK, and US are starting at £18 sterling pounds (tracking number included).
    Someone told me to not trust Ebay, and I once bought a video card in there (from Australia, yes) and the card was not working for the life of me.
    The story is that I have never used Ebay again.
    As for Discogs certainly is a nice place, I am in there. Oh yes, I am. But I see that the CD is becoming a very expensive commodity.
    Suddenly stuff that was 10 dollars went up to 30 and prices keep rising... it's becoming a bubble... So, count the circumstances involved - I think I better start buying off lossy AAC from iTunes... which are more or less in the "proper" price, in my currency.
    anorak2 likes this.
  15. c-eling

    c-eling Forum Resident

    Big PIA,
    But some of the best sounding discs contain it. Especially if your into old classical titles
    Pre emphasis list?
    bob60 likes this.
  16. dbucki

    dbucki Well-Known Member

    Ottawa, Canada
    I just want to know if Cory thinks I should get Please given that I already have the 2001 Further Listening.... :laugh:

  17. c-eling

    c-eling Forum Resident

    Sorry Dave, I can't give any advice on the new ones- I'm skipping them.
    Looks to be the EQ is better, but the compression bothers me.
    I'm in for the next batch though, as I thought the mastering sucked on the old 93 Very and 96 Bilingual so I'm really not risking anything :laugh:
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
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  18. anorak2

    anorak2 Well-Known Member

    Berlin, Germany
    To be honest, until you brought it up I'd never given the pre-emphasis thing much thought. But you seem to be saying they've done everything right, don't you?

    Ah. So you expect that an LP and CD of the same album should sound the same, and if they don't you blame it on pre-emphasis? I think your expectation is misguided. Even if mastered equally, vinyl and CD of the same release normally sound different. This is what the vinyl fans all rave about, and they're not wrong. (Some of them are wrong about the explanation though :)). Another thing is that there's no guarantee that the mastering engineers didn't somewhat tweak the EQ or applied other changes.

    Changing the subject back to topic :D ... Is this the box set you're referring to?

    Pet Shop Boys - Originals

    Never came across it. Was it a bargain at the time?
  19. chrrrd

    chrrrd Member

    dresden, de
    It wasn't a exactly bargain, IIRC. At least for my (teenager's) budget back then it was too expensive despite the nice packaging. I'd say it was around the price of two regular CDs. Could be wrong though.
    anorak2 likes this.
  20. John Barrett

    John Barrett Member

    Has anyone done a comparison between the original and 2018 Introspective LP? The first thing that struck me is the 2018 has a considerable run out compared to the original which is pretty thin. The 2018 appears to have been cut quite politely and i think the bass may suffer as a result. I put on the original straight afterwards and it was loud, bright and bassy!
    I was surprised they didn't release a 2LP of this, its a bit of a squeeze for one LP.

    The original definitely sounds livelier but not necessarily better. I need to really crank the 2018 properly to check.
    Any thoughts?
  21. c-eling

    c-eling Forum Resident

    Livelier is a good word John for the original. That's what came to mind when I was comparing to the old compact disc<--- I heard more detail. Yes this was cut at a very low volume as well as you said because of length per side.
    Normal length cuts I'm getting above -06
  22. portlandjulian

    portlandjulian Well-Known Member

    This person is happy on the Pet Shop Boys Community forum :)

    OK guys I started this thread exclusively for reviews of the 2018 Introspective cd remaster. Ive purchased all of the 2017/2018 CD remasters, and am aware that many members of the forum are wondering if they should purchase these. So I’m going to try to give some of my impressions on the sound quality of the remastering on the Introspective CDs.

    As I do not like the sound quality of vinyl in general I will not be making any comments on the vinyl remaster. I hope others will also post their thoughts on Introspective as well. Hopefully, this will help people to decide if they should give this remaster a listen. I wonder if it might be possible for other forum members to start a thread for each of the individual CD or vinyl remasters?

    So here goes.

    What exactly has been remastered?

    The content of both CDs have been remastered,
    I’ve seen the waveform files for both disks and each song has been individually remastered.

    This is good news as the person doing this remaster has clearly taken the time to give each track his undivided attention. Some songs have been mastered louder than others and generally all have good dynamic range. None of the tracks are (in my opinion) overly loud and in general this remaster of Introspective is far superior to the 2001 edition.

    One of the first things to jump out at me was the drum sounds have more punch and are crisp and defined. They are much less muddy, the same is true of the bass. The low end of sound is more pronounced but not Louder than the 2001 versions.

    The second thing to get my notice was that the vocals are a bit higher in the mix, I find that I can understand some lyrics that I had previously been unable to. On “ One of the crowd “ chris’s vocals are much more clear and understandable.

    The separation between the left and right channels seems more pronounced allowing the strings on “Left to my own devices“ to almost float in the air above you when you listen. I also noticed that some atmospheric sounds like breaking glass are more easily heard. The beginning to “I want to dog“ when the rain and thunder start is amazing it sounds like I’m actually standing out side in a thunderstorm.

    “Losing my mind“ is particularly glorious on the 2018 remaster. Much more detail and clarity on the vocals and the instrumentation. Disk two seems to my ears to have received a little bit more attention than disc one but this might just be my perception.

    In making this review I have compared to 2018 remaster side by side with the 2001 remaster and my original CD copy of introspective from the 80s. In my opinion the 2018 remaster is superior to both, and this remaster is a must purchase. I hope my little review will be of use to some of you and I’m looking forward to seeing your reviews as well.
  23. MarkusGermany

    MarkusGermany Well-Known Member

    Rheinberg, Germany
    Great review:righton:
  24. Scottb

    Scottb Forum Resident

    Nanuet, NY, USA
    I'm curious about what specifically you didn't like on the original Very and Bilingual?
  25. Starquest

    Starquest Active Member

    I bought Very when it came out, and noticed even then that it was a very (hah) loud CD. This was before the term "brickwalled" existed. But I think this is definitely an example of an early brickwalled CD.
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