SH Spotlight People always ask me: What does brickwalled digital compression sound like?

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Steve Hoffman, May 23, 2003.

  1. Mr. Bewlay

    Mr. Bewlay It Is The Business Of The Future To Be Dangerous.

    Denver CO
    Would this explain why my 1999 digital remaster of Low sounds like everything is turned up to eleven when compared to either of my vinyl copies? It's crazy how much louder the CD is.
    Big Blue and Dave like this.
  2. BradOlson

    BradOlson Country/Christian Music Maven

    Yes indeed.
    Dave likes this.
  3. Joseph LeVie

    Joseph LeVie Forum Resident

    South Florida
    That’s the album that broke me down. I couldn’t take it anymore. That’s how I found looking for information to avoid digital limiting.
    Steve Hoffman likes this.
  4. Joy-of-radio

    Joy-of-radio Forum Resident

    Central ME
    Very good Steve, and thank you for fighting the good fight.
    Contact Lost likes this.
  5. Francesco Greco

    Francesco Greco Active Member

    Palm Springs, Ca
    So, what is the BEST Elvis Presley cd, in terms of "Digitally Re-Mastered" ?

  6. I think so ..

    .. it's all the Rolling Stones' fault

  7. George P

    George P Notable Member

    Joy-of-radio likes this.
  8. Dave

    Dave Esoteric Audio Research Specialist™

    Oh, there's more than one fortunately. It depends on what album you want. Some of those mid 80's RCA releases are perfect along with the DCC 24KT Hits George mentioned and
  9. BradOlson

    BradOlson Country/Christian Music Maven

    Vic Anesini and Kevin Budd have done lots of great Elvis remastering
    goodiesguy, Tommyboy and supermd like this.
  10. The Pinhead

    The Pinhead SUDACA ROÑOSO

  11. head_unit

    head_unit Senior Member

    Los Angeles CA USA
    The Scorpions Love At First Sting CD release :drool:
    The Pinhead likes this.
  12. lemonade kid

    lemonade kid Forever Changing

    Simply put...excellent.
  13. lemonade kid

    lemonade kid Forever Changing

    The vinyl reissue of John Cale's masterpiece Fragments Of A Rainy Season could have used Steve's magic minimalist touch for sure.

    How does an engineer think that a live recording of just John and his grand piano deserves such painfully remastered brickwalling?!
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2020
  14. David del Toro

    David del Toro Forum Resident

    Brilliant analogy, i've been struggling for a way to explain compression to my peers, not that any of them care though lol
  15. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your host Your Host Thread Starter

    Just note that analog compression/limiting does the same thing, only with a certain sonic goal in mind. Digital c/l just cuts off dynamic peaks, no sonic improvement, no special effect, no mercy.
  16. Dillydipper

    Dillydipper Sultan Of Snark

    Central PA
    I would like to hear any possible stories from a professional producer who insisted on squashing an otherwise-excellent-sounding recording, and had his reasons...then, in retrospect after the album came out, he finally understood what he had done, only he could not seem to convince others in the chain of command, he'd made a mistake because he had ruined the public's first impressions of something that could have had a much more positive impact.

    There must be some stories like that out there, and I think that learning those from the offending and regretful producer, could go a long way towards helping us understand how competent professionals could end up there, and glean from it, where in the creative process, was the producers' point of weakness. And I bet it's not always the point at which the bass player walked into the suite and complained because he wasn't loud enough.

    Because when it comes down to it, it's a decision made for some other reason than the expectation that you're doing it for the best presentation of the recording, right? We could at least trust them more, if we saw from their positions, what leads to that, and that they are capable of knowing better.
  17. Donfrance

    Donfrance As honest as a politician.

    Thanks you very much, I greatly appreciate this. Clear and simple.
  18. Murph

    Murph Somewhere...under heaven

    This is a great analogy. I guess my question is this : Why is it done?
  19. WayneC

    WayneC Hopelessly addicted to vinyl

    Brilliant. Well articulated. I get exactly this as well. Thank you!!!
    ashiya likes this.
  20. Nakamichi

    Nakamichi The iceage is coming....

    Yes,I still dont understand why it is done despite reading lots about it.Why cant the end user just turn the volume up if they want it louder?
  21. Murph

    Murph Somewhere...under heaven

    Im thinking its done for the people who strictly listen to their music on smartphones? I'm really not sure.. perhaps a forum member can educate us!
  22. lemonade kid

    lemonade kid Forever Changing


    Hey Steve:
    Question...What is the difference between bad digital compression and brickwalling?
  23. old45s

    old45s MP3 FREE ZONE

    Squashing the loud bits, and sucking up the quiet bits (with no air space, no detail and individual instruments indistinguishable with the drums and vocalist lost in the mix!)
    Great for car and truck drivers that like to drive with their window(s) down and probably think a 'waveform' is a legal document.
    As long as there are people out there that don't mind spending the bucks on overly L O U D cd's it'll continue.
    Audiophiles (unfortunately) are in the majority but record companies and engineers should show some TLC and respect to a musicians time, talent and effort!
    lemonade kid and Murph like this.
  24. David del Toro

    David del Toro Forum Resident

    Hmmm... that begs the question, what would analog compression/limiting look like in this scenario with the one-way mirror?
  25. old45s

    old45s MP3 FREE ZONE

    They'd look identical but be a little warmer....
    David del Toro likes this.

Share This Page