Sound Quality of Music Club CD's vs. Non Music club CD's

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by CD Heaven West, Jul 17, 2009.

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  1. Let's also keep in mind variations that can happen between pressing plants and even presses because of minor variations that can occur due to the glass master (or if a CD was sent that as well).

    When I see "Manufactured for BMG" or "CC" I always assume that they're produced on the same line. Of course that's just an assumption i've always made..who knows if it's right or wrong.
  2. theholygoof

    theholygoof Forum Resident

    Madison, WI
    Now, I fully understand this could be all in my head, but I feel like I've had a few Club Versions where the physical quality of the disc seems more susceptible to damage that affects playback.

    A scratch that may have no affect on a Retail Version has seemed to have serious repercussions on a Club CD.

    Anyone else notice anything like that? Or, is it just me being foolish?
  3. What's interesting is that Second Spin has sent me music club used ones at the same price as the "real ones".

    I've never noticed them to be of any less quality.
  4. rock76

    rock76 Forum Resident

    Northwest MEX
    It happened to me once. I bought Led Zeppelin first album on cd and they fooled me into thinking it was a retail issue. I took off the sticker and there it was: BMG Music Service...:rolleyes:
  5. Andreas

    Andreas Forum Resident

    Frankfurt, Germany
    In other words, there are some record club CDs out there that are digitally identical to DCC CDs? This is fantastic news because they will sound every bit as good as the gold CD on many systems, especially if ripped to a PC. Now if we only knew the titles...
    lightbulb likes this.
  6. imagnrywar

    imagnrywar Forum Resident

    San Francisco
    Uh, I don't think that's what he was saying.
  7. ivan_wemple

    ivan_wemple Forum Resident

    The clubs actually offered some of the CDs in the DCC catalog (not the gold ones, obviously). One that comes to mind is the Zombies greatest hits compilation.
  8. Brian81

    Brian81 Active Member

    What is pretty good about the clubs is that you can sometimes get an older pressed discs. Geffen/Universal Media has their recent discs pressed by EDC and they're kinda cheapy. My last batch of orders from BMG before they closed, I was receiving a few discs here and there pressed by DADC, and was very happy as that is my favorite as far as CDs go.

  9. And matrix number.

  10. Uh, but that is exactly what he said.
  11. ivan_wemple

    ivan_wemple Forum Resident

    Guys, you're putting way too much into this.

    The DCC CDs sent to the clubs, if manufactured by/for the clubs, were all on the DCC label. The discs and artwork are plainly marked, "DCC". Just like a Warner Bros. disc manufactured by/for the clubs is plainly marked, "Warner Bros.".
  12. CardinalFang

    CardinalFang New Member

    The record clubs offered specific DCC titles (I would assume they only offered their silver discs... I've seen Sammy Davis Jr).

    I doubt Steve meant that they used DCC mastering for stock titles.
  13. seed_drill

    seed_drill Forum Resident

    Tryon, NC, USA
    Actually, BMG used to sell Bowie's Ryko gold discs. That's where I got the boxed set of the entire run. The ONLY place I ever saw it. Quite frankly, I don't think they pressed it. It looks more like they bought some direct from Ryko.
    john lennonist likes this.
  14. Yep. I believe that's the case as I often got **Some** of them in the green tinted cases that Ryko later started using.
  15. manicpopthrill

    manicpopthrill Forum Resident


    Me neither. My understanding is he is saying that post-'88 or so the clubs did not want to bother with actual masters any longer, just a copy of the disc that anyone could buy retail. My understanding is that Steve is scornful of club cd's altogether from that point on. Am I wrong here?
  16. Scott Strobel

    Scott Strobel Forum Resident

    Capitola, CA USA
    That's exactly how I took the info!!!
  17. billnunan

    billnunan Forum Resident

    Cleveland, Ohio

    That's how I took it.
  18. CD Heaven West

    CD Heaven West Active Member Thread Starter

    Tamarac, Florida
    Hey Steve, Thanks for your input. I learn something new every day.:)

  19. CD Heaven West

    CD Heaven West Active Member Thread Starter

    Tamarac, Florida
    Ok, So how do I know if Buddy Holly's From the Original Master Tapes on MCA 5540 mastered by Steve and mfd. for RCA Direct Marketing Inc. sounds the same as the non RCA Direct version. Is there an easy way to tell without having to find a reguar version and making a comparison?
  20. Steve Hoffman

    Steve Hoffman Your Host Your Host

    Don't let me ruin your day. It's not constant. Sometimes they requested a master clone (PCM1630) and sometimes not. Each case is different. But when they stated that they wanted just a commercial CD to use as their master (even when we offered to get them a proper 1630 clone FOR FREE) I knew the writing was on the wall. What were they going to do with that CD? Re-run it through a console and make a new 1630? Using what A/D converter? Flat or "remastered"? Did they try and make a new 1630 by using the CD and bumping to PCM1630? Why on earth would they do that instead of using OUR proper 1630 clone made under my direct control? Made no sense. Then later when the plants started using exabyte masters instead of 1630s and doing laser cutting at high speeds all bets were off.

    I avoid all of them. Now Record Club LP's are another thing. Sometimes the copy tape that was made for the clubs was from the original master and not the EQ Cutting Dub used to make the commercial LP. I have a bunch of Motown LP's from Clubs that just kill any commercially released LP version. It's always a gamble and not for the faint hearted. And of course the really famous record club LP's that came out in stereo ONLY for the Clubs (Dixie Cups, etc.) are world class collectibles.
    lightbulb likes this.
  21. lukpac

    lukpac Senior Member

    Milwaukee, WI
    Why would they need to remaster anything or make a A/D conversion? The digital data on a CD is the same as that on a 1630.
  22. CD Heaven West

    CD Heaven West Active Member Thread Starter

    Tamarac, Florida
    So again, is there a way for me to tell if the Buddy Holly album that you mastered for MCA that I have from RCA direct, is the same as the regular MCA issue?
  23. You have to run it through EAC and compare the numbers with a retail copy. Others have gone further and done fancier things like matching up the digital files to see if they cancel out. That will at least confirm if they are the same bit-identical masterings. Pressing differences will often come down to what plant was used and that would have to be checked manually by ear.
    Russ_B66 likes this.
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