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Eric Clapton MFSL recommendations and "What is the Gain system?"

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by btomarra, Sep 15, 2002.

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  1. btomarra

    btomarra Classic Rock Audiophile Thread Starter

    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    Eric Clapton MFSL recommendations

    I have read earlier threads about the MFSL Slowhand being excellent but 461 Ocean Boulevard being muddy.

    Can anyone recommend some nice sounding Eric Clapton MFSL titles? How is S/T or Just One Night?

    Thanks,

    Brian
     
  2. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    The MFSL 461 sounds exactly like the stereo master tape (and I've heard them both).

    Get it. A classic album!
     
    George P likes this.
  3. btomarra

    btomarra Classic Rock Audiophile Thread Starter

    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    Thanks, Steve.

    And I appreciate you always quickly responding to these threads of mine. Respect your insight always!

    Brian
     
  4. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    Sure, Brian. Love to help.

    The tape does have a bit of a hole in the midrange though.

    I don't mind it, but some folks equate that with muddiness.
     
    George P likes this.
  5. btomarra

    btomarra Classic Rock Audiophile Thread Starter

    Location:
    Little Rock, AR
    I don't either. I want a CD to closely mirror the stereo master tape as possible. A little equ'ing is okay if brings the life out of the recording. But, I hate a modern sound on CDs. I want the original analog hiss, and the warmth of the original album. Like...the way you remaster!

    Brian
     
  6. Andy

    Andy New Member

    I never did really like 461 my fave is Slowhand.
     
  7. John

    John Senior Member

    Location:
    Northeast
    Re: Eric Clapton MFSL recommendations

    Hi Brian- I think the MFSL 461 is killer sounding. Full, rich, warm. I think muddy is too strong a word for the sound. The bottom is a little fat, but it works in this case. I like the album, if you do as well then I word seek this one out. Short of a full out effort by the Hoffmeister I dont think it can get much better. The MFSL Just One Night is good but not as warm as 461. I also doubt the master is as good as 461. If you like the music I would recommend it. I also have owned the original CD and like the MOFI better, although not by a huge margin. I also have the Nautilus Super disc and its decent as well, but my gut tells me that no one has really nailed this album so far. Are you listening Steve??

    John
     
  8. SteveSDCA

    SteveSDCA Senior Member

    Location:
    San Diego
    I like both 461 Ocean Blvd and Slowhand. If you can get an original LP pressing of 461 that's worth it too.
     
  9. John

    John Senior Member

    Location:
    Northeast
    Just decided to pop the MFSL Just One Night in the player. Brighter, harsher and more electronic than 461. More of a modern flavor I guess, but not too bad, still worth getting but I wouldnt go out of my way. My copy has the "Gain System" credited on the back. I am not a fan, much preferring the "pre-Gain" stuff like 461.

    John
     
  10. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

  11. japes

    japes Forum Resident

    Location:
    richmond, va
    GAIN system

    Hi everybody, I'm new to the forum (this being my first post). First I would like to say that I absolutely love this site. In fact, I'm looking around in here almost every time I log on.

    Regarding the MFSL gold cd's (of which I'm avid listener/collector), what are some general opinions of the GAIN system as opposed to discs manufactured before this process started? Is it an improvement or a detraction from the listening experience? When was this process first implemented? Thanks.
     
  12. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    Welcome to the forum.

    The MoFi Gain System is a special high quality mastering console, A/D converter, special tape machine, etc.. Made to strict specs with the finest parts & wire.

    Problem is, (probably just for me), along with the Gain System came "EQ tweaking". I'm not a big fan of adding "air" to the top end of analog tapes. I never do it when I remaster and I can detect it quite easily; that rising treble lift complete with enough extra top end tape hiss to kill a bug at 30 paces). It drives me bonkers (like in the JVC Japanese mastered stuff), and this is what I hear in SOME, not all, Gain remasterings. It adds more "detail", and audiophiles love detail, but at the expense of the cohesive whole, IMO.

    It has nothing to do with the actual system, just the mastering style. Too "audiophile" for my tastes.

    Others will no doubt disagree.......:)
     
  13. John Oteri

    John Oteri New Member In Memoriam

    Location:
    Hollywood, CA
    Wow. Steve has gone on record?

    Call the Times!

    ;)
     
  14. Dave

    Dave Esoteric Audio Research Specialistâ„¢

    Location:
    B.C.
    Steve!:bigeek: I do agree with you totally. My favourite MFSL Clapton is the UD1 of Slowhand the only Clapton album other than Cream: Disraeli Gears and Blind Faith that were mastered in Japan.


    (Dave: Pressed in Japan, mastered by MFSL in California.) SH
     
  15. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    Yes, a nice untampered with sound.

    The trick to a good remaster (for me) is to actually remaster something and have it END UP sounding untampered with.
     
  16. Beagle

    Beagle Senior Member

    Location:
    Ottawa
    The EQ tweaking started way before the GAIN system. Mo-Fi has been doing this since day 1, with the LP's in the early 80's. All my LP's have a boost in the upper treble and a sag in the presence region. Which means the bottom end is tweaked too.
     
  17. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host

    Dave,

    I know. I was speaking solely of CD's.

    The MoFi CD's seem to have been pretty much un EQ'd until later in the game.
     
  18. Beagle

    Beagle Senior Member

    Location:
    Ottawa
    Steve,

    OK, I understand. I mistook your post to infer that Mo-Fi began their habit of boosting their top end with the GAIN system. My bad. The Mo-Fi CD's I heard did not have this smiley EQ characteristic.

    So if GAIN was a system that Mike Moffatt was pretty proud of and Mo-Fi had exclusive rights to it, why did they not just let it do it's thing instead of altering the EQ? If they were going back to this tampering, how would one be able to distinguish the benefits of the GAIN system?
     
  19. Todd Fredericks

    Todd Fredericks Senior Member

    Location:
    A New Yorker
    Okay, the reason for this EQ "tampering" is very simple. Here's the scoop, it all started when [CENSORED!!!] ... I hope that explains everything.

    Todd
     
  20. Gary

    Gary Nauga Gort! Staff

    Location:
    Toronto
    Those pesky Gorts, huh, Todd? If they are not ____, then they are _____ which is against _____ not to mention ______.

    As for the MFSL "tampering", I guess you're right, presuming you are referring to ____ when ____ __ _____ and ___ ______ ___ which was ____ ___!

    It's __ ___ when that happens.

    ;)
     
  21. Todd Fredericks

    Todd Fredericks Senior Member

    Location:
    A New Yorker
    Well it wasn't the Gorts, it was ______. The truth of the matter is so _____ed that I feel we should always remember that _______ ! ________ was the person responsible at MF__ (hiccup) SL who decided to ______ and always _____ with the help of a rubber ______ (quack, quack). I hope this explains _____ing.

    To___ (hiccup) dd
     
  22. John

    John Senior Member

    Location:
    Northeast
    MOFI reply plus converter Q for SH

    Hi Steve- I am very happy to say how wrong you are!! Others may disagree but I couldnt agree more!! We are obviously on the same page. More "Audiophile" = Less "Musical" the JVC XRCD's that I have listened to are a perfect example of this. The pre-Gains according to a MOFI type I spoke with used a WD 4000 (sound familiar). These are some of the best CD's Ive heard. Although there are some losers. The Moffat converter was the beginning of the end for me personally.

    Question for you. Are you still using the Wonderful Wadia or have you moved on? Also, do you use a different converter for the CD and SACD layers of the same release??

    John
     
  23. Ken_McAlinden

    Ken_McAlinden MichiGort Staff

    Location:
    Livonia, MI
    Steve going on record as not liking airy eq such as appears on some of the latter-day MFSL CDs? That is such a rare occurence that it only seems to happen on days ending in "Y".

    In other words, it's not news. "Steve bites dog" now that would be news. :)

    Regards,
     
  24. syogusr

    syogusr New Member

    I totally agree with Steve on the MFSL 461, a classic; and great sounding CD all the way.
    This prompted me to take this out and play it, but upon taking it out of the case, I was taken aback by what seems to be about 15 or so small 'pits' in the black surface, that if held up to the light, you see through it. And looking at the gold side, the same holds true. It does not affect play, as I have it in right now, but I nervously looked at several dozen other Mo-Fi's and none of the others have this problem. Does anyone else have this problem, especially with this MFSL 461??
     
  25. Todd Fredericks

    Todd Fredericks Senior Member

    Location:
    A New Yorker
    No, my Cd-R copy of it seems fine...


    Seriously, I do have one or two MFSL's (I can't remember which ones off the top of my head) that seem to have the same "pitting" as you've described and they play fine. It was probably a few glitches in the pressing process/material...

    Todd
     
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