Led Zeppelin I-IV 2014 remasters considered the best?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Plissken99, Dec 5, 2014.

  1. bobcat

    bobcat Forum Resident

    Location:
    London, UK
    What do you think - if you have heard them - of the SHM discs from 2009 and the needledrops Dr Ebbetts did of the first four?
     
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  2. Siegmund

    Siegmund Forum Resident

    Location:
    Britain, Europe
    I've heard the 2014 remasters and can honestly say they don't make a day and night difference from the 1990 remasters - which is what I was expecting.

    I'd say they are probably NO WORSE than the 1990 remasters, though.
     
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  3. tmtomh

    tmtomh Forum Resident

    SHM CDs: These are the same mastering as the regular 2008 Rhino Definitive Collection, which means they are the Marino mastering, but level-boosted so that they clip, and possibly some added compression. So they're not my favorite, although the packaging is very cool!

    Ebbets: I never listened to all of the Ebbets needle drops, and it's been several years since I listened to the ones I did hear, but my view is that they were surpassed by needle drops from other folks (like pbthal).

    Hope this helps!
     
  4. rockclassics

    rockclassics Forum Resident

    Location:
    Arkansas, USA
    Also note that Dr Ebbets needle drops did not always use preferred pressings. For example LZ II was not an RL pressing.
     
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  5. bobcat

    bobcat Forum Resident

    Location:
    London, UK
    Yes, indeed!
     
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  6. violetvinyl

    violetvinyl Forum Resident

    So, just random pressings?
     
  7. ACK!

    ACK! Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    If there's added compression and level boosting, then how can it be the same mastering?
     
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  8. Nightbreed

    Nightbreed Up The Irons!

    Location:
    Riverside, CA
    Pbthal's needle drops are great! I favor his Beatles drops vs. Ebbett's. I also really like his Black Sabbath needle drops.

    Dr. Ebbett does good work, but he adds some high EQ which makes everything sound crisp...but I prefer a more neutral tone. I suppose all one would have to do if they don't like the extras highs is EQ them out in their system, so for that reason I tend to still recommend Dr. Ebbetts most of the time.
     
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  9. Nightbreed

    Nightbreed Up The Irons!

    Location:
    Riverside, CA
    I guess technically it would be a new mastering, but it's based on the bulk of the work Marino did in the '90s (using it as a foundation). If I understand correctly, the initial mastering job by Marino involved getting the master tapes and processing them from scratch. For the 2008 Box Set they used those same processed results but boosted the levels using compression. Someone please correct me if I'm wrong.

    EDIT: The 1993 Box Set is also a Marino mastering, but boosted just a little in volume. I've compared it again recently to the 1990 Crop Circle discs and the tonal qualities are the same, it's just a little louder. While it does clip sometimes due to the increased volume it's still very listenable. I found the 2008 set decent, listenable as well, but ultimately too loud for my taste.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2018
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  10. BDC

    BDC Forum Resident

    Location:
    Tacoma
    I like the original CDs and the 2014s too, the latter of which are only owned for the bonus content.
    Hair can be split going disc for disc, but I never had any complaints about the originals. I like the 90s ones too from what I've heard, but only own IV. Probably prefer 80s overall followed by 2014 followed by Marinos......Marinos have the most EQ work...but do have dynamics
     
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  11. RK2249

    RK2249 Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Jersey
    LZIV is precisely the reason I found out about the Diament/Sidore discs on this website...I found the Marinos to be uncrankable and harsh sounding...even IV. I much prefer the original CDs but there are plenty of people that prefer the new masterings. I happen to like the Sidore master for IV.
     
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  12. Nightbreed

    Nightbreed Up The Irons!

    Location:
    Riverside, CA
    I've been meaning to ask about the Sidore discs...are those and the Diaments one in the same? And I think the reason I can't get some of the Diament discs loud enough is just because of my crappy systems. I don't have a proper audiophile stereo, just an Asus laptop with Audio Technia headphones (pathetic, I know lol). The best sound system I have is probably in my Subaru Legacy, but my wife drives that. Thinking I should take all the Diament discs out for a nice long test drive! :uhhuh:
     
  13. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Sidore = IV
    Diament = all others
     
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  14. tmtomh

    tmtomh Forum Resident

    I must confess that I don't actually know if the 2008 CDs have added compression, or are just level-boosted, and therefore de facto compressed (because the peaks get chopped off by the clipping).

    I'm pretty sure they're just level-boosted without any actual added compression - but I am not positive. @lukpac , do you know?

    (FWIW, my personal view is that a level boost, with no other changes, is not a new mastering; but I can understand how others might view it as a different mastering if the level boost resulted in clipped peaks.)
     
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  15. tmtomh

    tmtomh Forum Resident

    FWIW (which might not be much! :)), my personal preferences as of when I'm writing this are as follows:
    • Zep I: Davis, by a hair. Love the Diament too, a must-own; but I think the Davis is slightly cleaner sounding, and the two masterings are surprisingly similar-sounding overall. Diament is a tad warmer.
    • Zep II: Davis. IMHO the most overrated of the Diament Zep CDs. I've always felt the bass to be bloated on the Diament, and I feel the Davis actually sounds more like the RL vinyl than the Diament does.
    • Zep III: Davis. If you like the UK Plum vinyl, with its crystalline treble, the Davis is the closest CD to that; if you like the Canadian red label vinyl with its more mellow top end, then the Diament is the CD for you.
    • Zep IV: Marino. I don't love any of the CDs, but the Marino is the least bad to my ears. The Davis is too bass-shy; the Sidore is closed-in and just bad-sounding to me. For me, vinyl rips are the way to go for this album.
    • Houses: Diament, all the way, as good as everyone says. Just gorgeous.
    • Physical Graffiti: Davis, by a hair. Love the Diament too - also a must-own, particularly since, unlike Zep I where both masterings sound similar, the Davis and Diament PG CDs sound very different.
    • Presence: Davis, by a mile. Best this album ever has sounded, with the possible exception of the Classic Records 45rpm LP, and even on that I'm not entirely sure I like the Classic any better than the Davis.
    • In Through the Out Door: Davis. The clarity on this notoriously, needlessly murky mix is great on the Davis.
    • Coda: Marino for We're Gonna Groove and I Can't Quit You Baby; Davis for Poor Tom; undecided on the other five tracks.
     
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  16. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Location:
    Milwaukee, WI
    Alas, no, I haven’t heard them, or at least don’t remember hearing them.
     
  17. Dr. Funk

    Dr. Funk Forum Resident

    Location:
    Fort worth tx
    Good list.......I think I'm pretty close to your preferences. What do you like more about the Davis Physical Graffiti over the Diament? I totally agree with you in regards to Houses.....although, I think the Davis doesn't sound near as bad as some on this forum have claimed. Coda is a tough one for me.....so many different tracks recorded in different eras. I like the sound of the original US vinyl. :shrug:
     
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  18. Nightbreed

    Nightbreed Up The Irons!

    Location:
    Riverside, CA
    If the peaks were indeed chopped off (I can't remember since I sold my 2008 set years ago) then I'm inclined to think it was just level boosted and therefore allowed to clip. If there was compression added I'd think that the peaks would be limited at or just below 0db, with the softer peaks brought up to a similar level as the (previously) louder peaks.

    And I also tend to agree with your thoughts on what constitutes a new mastering. I'll admit I don't actually know what the text book definition of audio "mastering" actually is. If one considers it any change at all to the final mix or previous master (like level boosting) then I guess it's a "new master". But if one defines a a new master as processing tapes from scratch and/or changing the EQ, then perhaps a simple level boost wouldn't count as a new master. I guess I could understand either interpretation.
     
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  19. Chooke

    Chooke Forum Resident

    Location:
    Perth, Australia
    I'm with you album by album except PG. To my ears the Davis is significantly better than the Diament, rather than marginal.

    I also marginally prefer the Davis LZ I overall, especially on tracks like Babe Im Gonna Leave You but much prefer the Diament on the more bassy tracks such as Dazed and Confused.
     
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  20. tmtomh

    tmtomh Forum Resident

    I would agree with you about Dazed - Page’s guitar has an extra layer of thickness and menace on the Diament.
     
  21. RK2249

    RK2249 Forum Resident

    Location:
    South Jersey
    As I've mentioned before, my only quibble with the Davis remaster of LZIII is the lack of bass (in comparison to the Diament) of Immigrant Song, which is monstrous on the Diament...in a good way. This may not be reflected in wave analyses but is very, very obvious on my system.

    I may have to give the Davis remaster of Presence a chance based on your comment
     
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  22. Nightbreed

    Nightbreed Up The Irons!

    Location:
    Riverside, CA
    I thought the amount of bass in the Davis remaster of LZIII, especially Immigrant Song, was just about perfect. But it could just he the difference between our setups; I'm using some EQ in foobar to compensate for my headphone's EQ profile, so...

    The only version of Immigrant Song I've been wholly dissatisfied with is not on CD at all, but on vinyl...the praised UK Plum. I've listened to a few of my friend's needle drops for that one and they all lack bass and feature that shrill "crystalline treble" that tmtomh referenced.

    I thought one of the benefits of vinyl was it's "warm" tonal qualities lol /sarcasm (I know it has nothing to do with format in this case and that it's the mastering). I mean, unless the needle drops were substandard...but I don't think so since they are supposedly the best drops available and from multiple droppers.
     
  23. ACK!

    ACK! Forum Resident

    Location:
    New Hampshire
    I think the 2014 Davis remasters sound warmer and more analogue-y than the Marinos, which were my go-to discs...until 2014.
     
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