What are the top 10 sounding half speed masters?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by STBob, Oct 9, 2014.

  1. STBob

    STBob Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Michigan
    I've been buying half speeds lately and do find most of them sound better than the standard LP version.

    Best sounding I have are.

    1. Super Tramp Crime of the Century
    2. Miles Davis Bitches Brew. Might even sound better than the super tramp
    3. Emerson Lake and Palmer, ahh cant think the name right now.
    4. Eat a Peach - Alman Brothers

    Well I only have 4 for now, I do have other half speeds but Foghat and a few others did not seem to sound a bunch better than the original so I left the so so ones out.
     
  2. chrism1971

    chrism1971 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Glos, UK
    First Dire Straits lp, sounds superb.
     
  3. STBob

    STBob Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Michigan
    Thanks keep them coming in.

    So far on my short list to get are.

    1. ELO 1/2 speed
    2. Steely Dan Aja
    3. Dark Side of Moon
    4. Wish you were here P Floyd
    5. Friday Night in San Fransisco - John Mclaughlin, Al Di meola, Pacco De. (hard to find this one)
    6. First Dire Straits lp,
     
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2014
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  4. Bennyboy

    Bennyboy Forum Resident

    Bob Dylan - Blood On The Tracks

    The only version that runs at the correct speed, makes all the sonic difference.
     
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  5. STBob

    STBob Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Michigan
    Oh I forgot to list Dylan, I just got the Mofi 1/2 speed of it today. Have not played it yet.
     
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  6. Todd W.

    Todd W. A Beautiful woman continued.........

    Location:
    Maryland
    I'm thinking I have two that are pretty good

    Earth Wind and Fire's Greatest Hits
    Doobie Brothers - Minute by Minute
     
  7. Slick Willie

    Slick Willie Decisively Indecisive

    Location:
    Sweet VA.
    FWIW, a few of my top picks

    Crime Of The Century - Supertramp
    Wish You Were Here - Pink Floyd (JPN press)
    Permanent Waves - Rush
    I Robot - Alan Parsons
    In The Wake Of Poseidon - King Crimson
    Hot Buttered Soul - Issac Hayes
    Some Girls - The Rolling Stones
     
  8. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host

  9. STBob

    STBob Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Michigan
    None?
     
  10. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host

    None. Can't stand what it does to the sound. The upper bass (warmth area) suckout. The top end, unnatural sounding and biting. The almost total lack of midband magic. The illusion of more "detail." Destroys the sound for me.

    They sounded great on my Pioneer 1010 receiver/AR3a speakers and Technics turntable back in 1989. When I upgraded, ouch.

    However, that is just my personal opinion. If you're digging them, go to it!
     
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  11. reb

    reb Long Live Rock

    Location:
    Long Island
    CBS half-speed mastered lp's may be inherently flawed. I recall reading documentation that many of the titles were cut at the wrong speed due to a miscalculation.
     
  12. mike catucci

    mike catucci Forum Resident

    Location:
    PA
    As a newbie to the vinyl game can I assume that half speed 45 masters are different than the 45 rpm versions of an album? For example I was reading yesterday how the 45RPM of Rumours done by Mr. Hoffman is one of the best sounding vinyl records available and I plan to grab this later today from Music Direct. This is different than a half speed 45RPM correct?
     
  13. Classicrock

    Classicrock Forum Resident

    Location:
    South West, UK.
    Steve have you heard any of the latest Mo-Fi Dylans? I think the current Mo-Fi cutting system has minimised all of those negatives.
     
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  14. wask_

    wask_ New Member

    I have no experience in half speed masters albums (never heard one) but what you're saying reminds me of the 24 frames per seconds/48 frames per seconds movies debate. Is this a silly comparison or it's pretty much the same thing ?
     
  15. STBob

    STBob Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Michigan
    Well I started buying them after listening to a bunch of our new vinyls. Did not even know which was which or had listened to a 1/2 speed. Three albums sounded much better then the others and one was scratched up (Emerson lake and palmer) On closer inspection all three just happened to be 1/2 speeds. At that time I did not know much about them only in a blind tests they did sound better.

    I doubt I'll upgrade past a mmc2 beogram TT or amp so I'll keep on getting them.
     
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  16. Slick Willie

    Slick Willie Decisively Indecisive

    Location:
    Sweet VA.
    I thought this was about the top ten of the tech, not whether they were the best example of a release or not. Was/am I wrong?
     
  17. BayouTiger

    BayouTiger Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Orleans
    Crime of the Century MFSL
    Hot August Night MFSL
    The Stranger - CBS Masterworks
     
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  18. rockledge

    rockledge Forum Resident

    Location:
    right here
    The ones that stick out in my memory are:
    On The Threshold Of A Dream
    Journey Departure
    Styx Grand Illusion
    Magical Mystery Tour

    I have had quite a few of them but these are the ones I enjoyed enough for them to stick out in my mind. Long time ago.
     
  19. STBob

    STBob Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Michigan
    Well many records are bad 1/2 speed or full speed. If the original tape is bad record is going to be bad.
    This is about ones that are done right. A 1/2 speed is going to have more accurate cuts due to the physics of cutting. Some sound very good others not so good. I'm looking for the good ones only.
     
  20. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host

    No it's not. Who's been feeding you this line of bullsky?
     
  21. Jimbo912

    Jimbo912 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Williamsville NY
    I think we hit a nerve with our host
     
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  22. Jimbo912

    Jimbo912 Well-Known Member

    Location:
    Williamsville NY
    ...and I tend to agree with him
     
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  23. STBob

    STBob Active Member Thread Starter

    Location:
    Michigan
    Well Can you draw better on a piece of paper that is moving fast or slow? why not cut them at 10000 RPM?
    Its going to have more time to do the cuts, less energy to produce them. I think I've read this several places and I'm not sure why they would BS. Its just physics.

    However I have also read that newer heads can cut better than the old ones so maybe the need for 1/2 speed is not as great today. A half speed in the 70s might be better than the standard LP. But maybe today there is less need for it.

    This topic is about well Done 1/2 speeds not ones that do not sound good. But since Steve is higher up in the food chain on this forum I will overlook his highjacking :)

    Todays Mobility half speeds have 1. Thicker vinyl. 2. Much better packaging art. The sleeves are thicker, the cover is thicker. I don't know that they sound sound better than a year 2014 regular speed. The technology today may make 1/2 speeds not as useful. Which would make MoFo total BS.

    According to a Warner Bros mastering engineer who is a member out there, half-speed mastering is merely a marketing gimmick. It sounds nice only because a lot of care has been taken to master the record. Half speed mastering was required to overcome the limitations of record cutting styluses at that time. Post the 70's however, with helium cooling technology (I think), cutting stylus can cut at very high frequencies beyond 20khz.
     
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2014
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  24. Slick Willie

    Slick Willie Decisively Indecisive

    Location:
    Sweet VA.
    1/2 speed mastering is one of those things that look good on paper, the execution of said tech has not lived up to expectations, IMO.
     
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  25. Slick Willie

    Slick Willie Decisively Indecisive

    Location:
    Sweet VA.
    Subject: Supertramp, Crime of the Century

    Because of this thread and our hosts "testiness" on 1/2 speed masters, it prompted me to play my US original P4/P4 copy, something I have not done in years due to the awesomeness of the MoFi release. Then I sez to myself, "Slick, you've done a few upgrades since the last spin of the "regular speed" press, might be time to re-evaluate".

    Well.......................................I was wrong, again. The way the highs shimmer, the sharpness of the drum attack, the shock of the abrupt low note, and overall dynamics are mostly lost on the 1/2 speed.

    Damn. now the search for an earlier US or a UK press ensues. DAMN THIS THREAD!!! And thanks Steve for making me rethink.
     
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