Adventures In Audio

Audiophiles - You're all wrong!

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@LeeBergerMediaProd:  While there’s less than 400 comments I thought I’d offer advice on your lighting. I hope you won’t mind. Your background photo has a large window to camera right. The key source. You have a bright cool light to camera left and a dim warm light to camera right. I recommend you reverse the key and fill lights to match the background.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @LeeBergerMediaProd: You're very observant but not the first to notice this. My view is that my lighting is set up as a counterpoint to the 'natural' lighting in the room. Since my right side is my best side that governs the position of the lights. I could reverse the background of course but then I think the issue would be matching my lighting with the 'natural' light. I'll probably stay as I am for now and consider the issue when I redecorate.

@user-vk1qs1bq2v:  Anyone who thinks a recording captures a live performance is seriously deceived. There are so many barriers - mics, mic placement, venue acoustics, recording media, mastering, playback equipment, listening room to name a few. The best we can aspire to is enjoyable music that survives all the barriers this process entails. I love listening on my humble desktop speakers, my many headphones and expensive "audiophile' systems. They bring the music in different ways but in the end it is the music that counts. A $6000 dollar audio cable won't improve the music. .

@mike_junmin:  I think this comes down to the panning problem. 

I think each track or channel from microphones should always be panned to the exact point they were placed on the stage, and that those be preferably omnidirectional microphones. This also solves recreating time difference of a signal in different microphones and creates more realistic and vibrant width of stage

You'd think they wouldn't mess this up after Decca practically perfected the technique.

@mike_junmin replies to @mike_junmin: I think the clarinet was dancing around in the stereo image probably because they panned soloist's left mic to hard or mid left and right to hard or mid right(sounded more like hard than mid). Just place them where they were placed in the recording and it should be okay I think

@digitaldosage1979:  I just dont get it... The whole audiophile thing. I'm genuinely asking this as a question, but from what I gather, most audiophiles want the purest sound possible, right? This even leaks into "what it sounded like in the room/studio" territory, right? If so, my main question is why? I would absolutely hate it if every album I listened to "sounded like it did in the room". My expectation for most albums is that there's a sense of hyperrealism there. Using tracking, mixing and mastering as an art form to add more creative color and deliver a product that is pleasing and can excite my emotions in a positive or even negative manner. If I want to hear a band in a more raw, "natural" format, I'll just go see them live, even though I know there's someone behind the mixing desk there as well. I don't know, I've just never understood the whole audiophile debate. I'm all for using any equipment that is appropriate in order to accomplish this, and I also understand the desire to have a good playback system, but outside of that I just don't get it.

@robertbailey8003:  What you didn't say was the reason for this "dancing about" of the clarinet. BTW, I listened to this piece on my PC with a Dell sound bar. The speakers are about 40cm apart. I identified the "fault" on the first listen, but it wasn't bouncing about as much as you suggested. Probably due to the short distance between the two speakers.

@ravipeiris7602:  Music supposed stir the emotions... I don't see the point of this critical analysis , right and the wrong way.... especially the good old days argument...
chacun a son goût, n'est pas?

@nominevacans8173:  tbh, i like it too. it adds to the expression.

@mjloudspeaker:  SIRE, it's show business, lol... cheers!

@winekey:  Your schtick as sudo intellectual know it all enlightening the masses is so comically pretentious it’s some of the best entertainment on YouTube…the world would be a might more boring without narcissists like you with access to an av production team preaching dogma as matter of fact …many thanks for your axioms…bravo 😂

@marctestarossa:  It comes down to the perceived distance between the performance and the listener. And it works the same in pop or rock music: if you have more space and movement within the stereo imaging you get a much more intimate and the more things bleed into another (not tonally, just in position on the perceived stage) the more "far away" it sounds. Like you were in the second row hearing the difference in the violin facing different directions and if you had been on the other end of the venue you probably wouldn't. But I think this is the magic of recording. You can make a performance sound like you're front of stage or you can make it seem like you're on stage right in the action. And the axiom you brought up is quite useless imho, because then you just would set up a binaural mic at the sweet spot of the venue to achieve exactly that.

@mike_junmin replies to @marctestarossa: From my experience sitting at the front of the audience in concerts where the soloist dances around, the actual placement of the sound within the width of the stage barely, if ever, change. The tone and the projection that I specifically hear change quite a bit if the f holes(in case of string instruments) face completely different positions, but not the placement of sounds.

You are right in mentioning the relationship between the stereo image and the perceived distance, but This comes more down to clear placement and actual width(which I am adamant that they provide with outriggers and not by hard panning the main microphones) of the image, rather than instruments jumping around.

His axiom is generally regarded to be true amongst classical musicians, fans and engineers. Funnily enough, I don't believe binaural microphones would really provide the best result. Traditional Decca trees with outriggers and spotlight(don't remember what they call it) to bring out solo instruments within the orchestra to recreate projection is the way to go imo

@10sassafras:  I wasn’t bothered from the snippet you played but I do like the idea of capturing the concert hall experience more than the creative audio approach. Pop music, on the other hand, plays with different rules.

@bekuma:  I love your channel. You remind me of Paul McCartney. I love that you are speaking the truth and sharing facts.

@titntin5178:  Hi fidelity is pursuit of fidelity to the original recording. If the recording engineer or the producer wishes to 'play' with the recording, no matter how distasteful we might find it, the goal of any Hi Fi purist will be to recreate it, warts an all.

As someone who was Audio engineer in several recording studios, and might be considered an Audiophile at home (£10K plus system), I have long appreciated that the two do not equate in terms of your approach to fidelity and describing your 'Dancing Clarinet' as wrong is simply a viewpoint that others may or may not share. I wouldnt capture it that way, but thats simply a point of view.

Trying to suggest a clasical recording should always try to replicate the concert hall is where YOU are wrong. It can be captured and presented in any way the producer or engineer sees fit - their creativity does not need to be boxed in by your opinion and there is no 'right way' to record anything (other than avoiding distrotion, clipping etc). Would you care to show me an accepted definition which conflicts with this? I thought not.
You deperately try and paint yourself as a resonable and considered person, but in reality you appear to simply be judging others by your own belief system and desperately trying to belittle any other beliefs for hits.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @titntin5178: Aha, you're one of those commenters whose opinion is better than mine. You're welcome to it.

@goncalocarvalho4917:  You are correct, it is absolutely silly for a soloist to sound like it is flying around the sound field lol
Oh and you would not notice that soloist in the violin concert because of parallax, in the recording sometimes this can happen because the relative distance from instrument to microphone is much larger than the same movement in apparent movement relative to the seat in the concert all

@yvesfrancoisritmo:  that effect should be used on an Esquivel or Andrew Popp stereo recording, BUT NOT on a classical recording.
I wonder if Roland Hendrikx clarinet was niched with 2 microphones and put on L and R - this perhaps caused the issue along with his movement
I've been in the studio a lot so that is what I heard
PS I see you spoke of this after I wrote this!

@Downhuman74:  For the longest time, my only version of Led Zeppelin's Physical Graffiti was a needle-drop I had made of the vinyl on cassette. Eventually, I got the CD but all of the sudden it had a different impact on me for some reason. I chalked it up to the change in format and eventually got used to the way it sounded even though something ate away at me just a tiny bit every time I listened -- it barely registered but it was still there. A couple of years ago, I dug out my old cassette deck and hooked it up to my system and found a box of recorded cassettes I had been holding onto. That needle-drop was among them and it eventually found its way into the deck. The second Custard Pie started playing I felt something click back into place and I couldn't quite figure it out right away. But all of the sudden, it felt just...well, right. I listened through right to the end with the joy that only comes from rediscovery but still I was taken aback at how a needle-drop on a crappy Memorex cassette somehow sounded better than every other version I owned. I switched over to the CD and finally it hit me -- my needle-drop was playing the album slower. It was almost imperceptible, but enough for my part of my brain to pick it up. Turns out the version of the album I had fallen in love with all those years ago was actually "wrong". Everything is subjective when it comes down it, man.

@Thin447Line:  So what's the solution? The sound engineer should only use one microphone for the soloist? Or how about attaching the microphone to the instrument? Solo singers can carry the microphone with them around the stage if they feel like dancing around like a drunken monkey.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @Thin447Line: Exactly. One microphone for the soloist. Attaching it to the instrument can work well for live sound but exposes other problems for recording.

@grandadgamer8390:  Proud of myself for getting that first time 😂 Fully understand, the sound engineer just couldn't leave those pots alone 😅

@AudioMasterclass replies to @grandadgamer8390: I have noticed in my observations that sound engineers ofter prefer 'do more' to 'do less'. There's a sweet spot in between and I think it's usually closer to 'do less'.

@gerardoromano3436:  I give up.I am NOT audiophilre. In 5 differennt audio setups from friend studio setup. My own system . different speakers DACs and sorces . streaming. This youtubr video. All I and many friends can hear is the clarinet barely shifted to the left. But steady as a stone in the soundstage. Are you trying to fool us all to get more viewers ? If so well I cant find a word to describe your lack off ethics (sorry english is not my langage. Excuse my mistakes)

@1337wafflezz:  perhaps i’m deaf but the clarinet in the “problem” clip didn’t really jump around all that much. they were always located in the left stage. I noticed more some slight rustling in the right stage barely audible

@fernandofonseca3354:  Hi David, I know you are not an electronics guy and your mantra is down to freq resp, dist and noise even though that these are typically steady state parameters - not transient stuff, (i.e. the ignored sigma coeficient of the laplace transform), which music is greatly made of. That said, I would like to hear your thoughts on the so called "opamp sound" and how would you tie that to your mantra. Thanks in advance.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @fernandofonseca3354: I could look into this further but in my experience from the past I found myself considering noise, slew rate, and now and then open loop gain. I would definitely not call myself an expert but I have definitely dabbled. I very much doubt that M. Laplace’s amazing transforms will be making an appearance.

@Tony-he8ze:  Dude, I don't get your point. I heard a clarinet a bit left of center enhanced by room ambience. Maybe you should chill your prudish criticism and get a life.

@fernandofonseca3354:  Years ago as a spectator to a live performance of Carmina Burana, I noticed that what I was hearing was not the direct sound of certain percussion instruments like the glockespiel and the tubular bell but their reflection coming from a rather tall, fully exposed side wall. That certainly got my brain distracted in resolving conflicting information rather than enjoying the music to the fullest... which to be honest, had other... challenges as one of the singers was consistently late in delivering his part!🤭... But that is the thing! It's part and parcel of a live performance!

@tomstickland:  Heard it straight away on my fairly good Sennheiser headphones via a DAC Magic DAC. The sound jumped left to right and all over the place. It didn't remove the emotional impact of the track for me.

Did they mix the two mics to full left and full right panning then?

@AudioMasterclass replies to @tomstickland: I think they are panned in a bit. If they were hard left and right I'd think there would be more extreme movement.

@alex_stanley:  I did notice the clarinet bouncing all over the place, but I listen to so much electronic music that I just assume weird stereo effects in a recording are intended. Because I don't listen to acoustic music, my focus is not on high fidelity recreation of live acoustic music. Synthetic music is freed from the constraints of trying to create a facsimile of physical reality. For me, the ideal concert hall experience for amplified music is an acoustically treated room and the best sounding pro audio sound system available. Unfortunately, very few music venues actually provide that experience.

@larryeckerdt9750:  I would comment on your subject matter, but I was so put off by your image changing depth and frame location (almost like a demented toad) on your edits, that I could not concentrate on the audio concerns you were trying to identify. 😱

@guyjohnson8848:  To me a Real Audiophile would want the recording to be as good, and (acording to genre) as real as possible.
I hated that clash of perspectives in that mad recording of lovely playing to be ghastly. Maybe the mixer/producer should have used a M-S technique and narrowed the perspective of the soloist. Or just used the top mic, as the lower two are separated and I wonder if they'd 'narrow down' nicely to near mono...
PS I have grown to like your videos that get on with the information (unlike umpteen waffly videos) and your style. Your face movements initiating the AI ones make me chuckle. TTFN

@uzirshah2686:  The problem is, the sound movement from your clip can be heard with an $5 earbud. How is that an audiophile test? If $5 earbud can hear it, then you have absolutely no idea what "audiophile" actually means. And you receive more views everyday because you are justifying your error, reverse pshychology...

@cubemerula5264:  I regret the fact you haven't compared this to the hand-held camera imperative of the modern age. I have a feeling this is done to make standing still in front of a screen more easily bearable and thus prolonged. I wonder if this audio equivalent does the same thing to occupy people's attention for longer?

I'm not particularly fond of this "since it can't be perfectly faithful, just do whatever". Even worse, to think that then "entertainment" should be the guiding principle... No. Do it "the best possible".

@prentrupathome5319:  Are you 100% sure the effect comes from the edit not the performance? I had a friend who used to dance around whilst playing the clarinet.

@vandalfamiliatv3080:  Some people use hardware to enjoy music. Audiophiles do the quite opposite 😅

@MC-jv6fs:  I would like you to speak about some Hifi-Equipment like dumpers for amplifiers or different cables, and i would like to see you making a blind test , hearing some random hifi-systems and explaining you what you can hear. -- Interesting channel !

@henrikpetersson3463:  I don't like the movement of the clarinet personally, it's a bit too extreme when listening on headphones. I would not have mixed it that way myself, and I would probably have used a mono mic if putting it up that close.
But if the aim is to replicate the listening experience of being in a concert hall then it has failed in other areas as well, although the others are not that prominent. The mix sounds nothing like you would experience it at the concert hall. And for me that's not a problem. In fact a lot of times I much more enjoy ensembles that have been recorded and mixed in more of a virtual space if it enhances the experience. Composers back in the day were constricted to the live ensemble experience as they had no close micing, mixing consoles or artificial reverbs. I bet many of them would have loved to be able to experiment with that as you pointed out. Personally I feel that you can capture a lot more detail and "soul" of the instruments if you use different recording techniques which hearing them recorded "as is" in a concert hall might make them a bit bland and less engaging to listen to.
All in all, for my personal taste the movement of the clarinet is too much in that recording. It's not "wrong" though. Especially as the mix and recording at a whole isn't pretending to be a natural capture.
I think it's problematic to start a video by pointing at a group of people and calling them out. That will automatically set them in a defensive state, which I believe is why you had so many people claiming that they liked the movement of the clarinet.

@danender5555:  This audio snob is just amusing.

@xxxYYZxxx:  Where "immersion" in the music is the audiophile context, pop audio quizzes are "out of context". There's no reason any given audiophile would notice a recording flaw while not also being immersed in the music, or even if did notice, give any attention to it... unless or until they were "immersed" in the music, in which case they'd rave about how good their equipment was to reveal the flaw... 😉

@joeldoxtator9804:  You are correct that the issue is not an audiophile issue as the stated goal of an audiophile is to replay recordings as transparently as possible.
This enters the realm of mastering tracks from multi track recordings.
Ideally, you would have multiple channels recording the player in close proximity, and then average them out to create an even image that is levels correct.
Alternatively, you could choose to isolate each channel and amplify the image swaying from left to right to create and exaggerated image that maintains the correct level as it tracks the subject.
All of which is out of the audiophiles control.
This is typically why I suggest to people that for 90% of their listening content, they are far better off investing in a quality stereo setup over a home theater setup.
This is because 90% of your listening is only mastered for stereo image which is two channels.
5.1 and up to 7.4.2 is only reserved for movies and high quality ones at that.
This is the most important thing in our control.
Play the correct channeled content on the correct channel equipment.

@ziofrenko:  and don't dare express the opinion of a composer who didn't even remotely think about the fact that one day music could be recorded and in what way.
but who do you think you are?! ahahahahaha

@ziofrenko:  the problem you expose is the basis of the recording:
everyone must forget that the real event, which most ignorant people draw inspiration from, does not exist.
every seat in the room sounds differently, every person sitting listens to a different thing, so real events do not exist because infinite real events exist.
each microphone positioned 360° around an instrument records a different thing, moreover...
so the fundamental question of the whole issue is: what is the right position?
The only point on which a recording of an orchestra can be based is the position of the conductor, who is also the only one who will then tell the technicians during mixing if what he hears in control room resembles what he heard on the podium.
since the conductor is 1 meter from the soloist, and is neither in the second row nor 50 meters from the stage, the conductor felt the sound move, it is inevitable.
everything else is boring and bullshit, I'm sorry.
Bottom line: you didn't understand anything.

@ziofrenko:  headphone is not a Stereo trasducer... they are Binaural trasducer, so is obviusly that with Headphone the "problem" is more obvius and can be to much. with simulator, and with stereo monitors put in correct way in my studio, with good room processing, the effect is pleasant.
but it is enough to turn on or off a room and monitor speakers simulator (as well as a headphone "rectifier") to understand it...

@filipnarada:  It immediately struck me in the former video. A recording of classical music should sound 'natural'. An engineer should not ad an artistic layer. I'm a pro clarinetist and home studio owner myself, and I would really dislike it if it would be me as the soloist (I don't come close to the amazing performing qualities of Roeland). A recording like this of Martin Frost (he almost dances playing clarinet) would sound as if he jumped off stage.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @filipnarada: Comment readers may care to take a look... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7OaQMiJc3o&ab_channel=NorwegianChamberOrchestra DM

@StevenMaes-zt1pu:  "Transforming a Humble Frog into a Majestic Elephant:
I thoroughly enjoyed your comments in the two YouTube videos you dedicated to a recording I made with Roeland Hendrikx. You present it in a Top Gear-style that reminds me of Jeremy Clarkson—little relevant information and a focus on entertainment.
Interestingly, it was a German colleague, a stranger to me, who brought your video to our collective attention. He regarded it as an enigmatic and unsubstantiated performance. Can we truly hold him accountable for his viewpoint? Your portrayal as an audio connoisseur in the realm of classical music, committed to furnishing discerning audiophiles with pertinent knowledge, is unquestionably commendable… Nevertheless, I am compelled to scrutinize your modus operandi.
Your meticulous approach seemingly suggests a profound dedication to scientific rigour. Yet, it leaves one yearning for specifics regarding the methodology of your listening test: the nature of the acoustic environment, the chosen loudspeakers, the use of calibrated headphones, the conspicuous absence of a dedicated vector scope such as RTW in favour of a plugin, the employment of a professional-grade headphone amplifier, among other intriguing aspects. It piques my curiosity as to why, in your capacity as a specialist, you refrained from requesting a High-Resolution audio file, a decision I would have gladly accommodated and informed you at the same time that the two Schoeps microphones you refer to as the so-called stereo pair with MK 2's are not used for the clarinet. Although you are quite convinced they are but I must disappoint you only the MK 4 cardioid microphone serves as support for the soloist.
In my practice, I favour an OCCO main pair , with 2 omnidirectional microphones positioned approximately 530mm apart, yielding a Stereo Recording Angle (SRA) of approximately 110 degrees. This, I must emphasise, is not an extraordinary approach but just craftsmanship and a choice I made. The movements of Roeland, which you've noted, are inherent to the natural gestures of an artist within the principal microphone pair. Is this wrong?
In closing, with a touch of naivety, earnestly hoping that, as you continue to share your audiophile wisdom with the world, it is underpinned by a robust foundation. Anything less, I fear, even if you make a 3 th video may sow the seeds of perplexity among those who seek clarity.

@rydaug79:  I like the idea of the an instrument traveling around the stereo image but not but not varying from note to note. It can add another dimension to the music. Think flight of the bumble bee with a flute moving around your speakers like a bee flying around you.

@anonamouse5917:  I heard an artifact in the right speaker. It could have been the sound of the valves working. I don't listen to music like this very often so I've got nothing to compare it against.
I didn't hear the usual suspects (heavy compression, tape hiss, poor quality mic, clipping).
I consider myself a budget audiphile (C$2,500 amp and headphones + computer as the source).

@seancurtin5131:  Happy to note this was a defect impossible to know of with a mono speaker system. However I hear you on unnessasary channel bouncing. Wanted on Pink Floyd's dark side of the moon but not for a classical soloist. The only annoying aspect of your show is that annoying AI thing, itS gyrating on the nerves and horribly annoying but hey, maybe that's an issue with my listened experience right? Thanks for sharing.

@evenblackercrow4476:  And it's not just the music type/genre and the performance environment. Take something earthy such as folk and native music. As the maestro said, the dancing clarinet is a special effect and may be sold as such.... I'm a better educated consumer for listening to these 12:57 minutes.

@Joshualbm:  So what does this make you? An audiophilologist? Anyhow, no stereo recording will ever reproduce realism. It is impossible. Only with multiple mics, channels and mirrored playback component is this possible. What you hear live is the net effect of what is going on in that room from you position and you know it's live because of how it sounds from where you are listening, whether that position changes or not. Whatever techniques the audio engineer tries, it's always going to be a compromise due to the extremely limiting fact of how the recording is achieved, mixed and mastered. So if, in the case of this clarinet flying about, the engineer had a bad case of mike bleed or was deliberately panning or miking to capture all the directions the clarinetist turned during playing, well that's annoying for sure. But since you're sensitive to all of this, in such a way as to get rather worked up, I'd say you're more of an audiophile than most people who call themselves as such.

@ericmc6482:  Linn is correct in that within reason any recording should listenable.
That said some systems can 'paper over the cracks' and make any recording 'pleasing' but that is not accuracy.
IME a good system is one that reproduces the content FR and dynamics and 3D imaging accurately but without omissions and without emphasis.
Some 'well regarded' and overly expensive systems are described as 'accurate' or 'revealing' but IME this usually means unnatural emphasis that gets fatiguing real fast.
Good sound is all about natural sounding timbre and 3D separation and 3D location and 3D depth and IME most 'hi-fi' systems fail these elementary criterion.
Also most 'audiophiles' are listening to fundamentally flawed systems and become hypnotised or entrained to thiis fundamentally wrong sound.
A few sessions of live sound engineering/mixing would cure most 'lounge audiophiles' of their misconceptions.
On my system I am transpoerted into the live recording space and multitracked studio recordings are presented as a collage of sounds blending into a mastered whole, both are forms of the art.
On my system clean clear recordings can be preseent and spectacuar, and lousy recordings just sound a bit griity and/or limited in FR/dynamics etc but the original goove still shines through without getting nasty sounding.
For me ths is what music reproduction is all about, when the system is good enough you can forget about the system and just revel or awe in the music.
Peace.

@ericmc6482:  Sounds fine to me on mono phone or BT speaker lol

@rainbowgr13:  As @vladluaky wrote audiophilia is fun and he is correct.There is a red line when you listen to the music.If you pass that line you have caught in the webb of the spider.The music we hear is recorded processed mixed and we hear the final version of the production.We liked it or not for us to decide but we can do nothing to change it.That's it.Sometimes they make a new version of the same recording as remaster or remixed with some extras.Every producer has a different technick and different approach for the final outcome.If a band or an orchestra have four concerts it the same area and watch all of them they are not will be the exactly the same.And if they record all of them they will find differences.But if you go down to this you will loose the pleasure of listening and enjoying the music.The music is performed by peopole and not from AI robots.At least not today i don;t know about tomorrow.

@stephengriffin1541:  I think in a way that studio technicians, mixers, mastering technicians shouldn’t be excluded from the creative process and offer tremendous listening experience potential to the audiophile.🤔

@mickeystewart4504:  I heard it like that and thought the clarinet was way forward and pictured a butterfly darting about

@tubefreeeasy:  I’d love to hear Kraftwerk’s new Audibahn (3D) with several musicians swaying their instruments around during the traffic moments.
With trombone, sax, trumpets, and whistles in movement.

@MultiPetercool:  Most 1960’s Pop music records was engineered to sound good on a single speaker AM radio.

@philipcooper8297:  Let's face it, audiophilia is not always about the enjoyment of music. For many it is a hobby of stats, specs and very expensive toys such as amps, headphones, speakers, DACs, cables, power conditioners... 🙂

@jakobgooijer:  as a wine connoisseur grows his taste over the years, as a perfume maker perfects his smell, so an audio and music lover trains his hearing. Taste, smell and hearing improve as long as you keep triggering them. And with that, there are some gaps in your fun and exciting story. Your approach to audio and music is positive, funny and lively. Greetings Jakob ( no ,I'm not an audiophile in the sense of money)

@AudioMasterclass replies to @jakobgooijer: I’ll be making a video soon for impecunious audiophiles. DM

@jakobgooijer replies to @jakobgooijer: I had to translate that word since I'm Dutch 😊

@TheStarahut:  Am I to understand that this channel is meant to be a targeted insult to people because of their hobbies? Or is it a kind of simpleton evangelism? Or are you just making money?

@AudioMasterclass replies to @TheStarahut: I recommend you try again to understand, consider, and appreciate the issue covered in this video. If that doesn’t work for you, you need to watch less challenging channels. DM

@tifiwilo replies to @TheStarahut: No, it's a targeted insult to people who justify their hobbies by evangelizing pseudoscience.

@stuartdarling1620:  So effectively what you're saying is they had two mics on the clarinet and they were panned too far left and right such that the appearance of the clarinet was unrealistically wide and as such all movement is exaggerated. I have the same problem when using piano samples on gigs where they have panned the low end hard left and the high end hard right, meaning that with a large PA the piano appears 50ft wide. Not accurate, this is why I send most of my acoustic sounds on a gig to the sound man in MONO such that they can position my sound in the mix where I am situated on stage. Then my keyboards emanate from the same area where I am physically situated leading to a more natural stereo image

@AudioMasterclass replies to @stuartdarling1620: Considering that word is that the higher mic wasn’t used then yes. The mics could have been panned inward, I would then check in mono. Or probably I’d just use one mic. Regarding your piano I agree totally. Worst case is a Leslie loudspeaker close miked and panned wide. DM

@jaymacintyre1777:  I noticed immediately the way the soloist is miked, so it jumps left and right in the stereo image. To me, it's not a problem because it's a recording---something different from a live performance. Both are valid in my opinion.

@DrWrapperband:  Recording are never "perfect", they are what they are. Audio systems are to get the best out of that source.

@verdedoodleduck:  Thank you for another cold shower. :o :) You carry a lot of useful information in these videos along with the lament. I confess to being guilty of enjoying it every time you say 'audiophile'. :)

@MartinPHellwig:  Your argument requires that the axiom "the sound should reflect that what the audience in the concert hears" to be true, I'd argue that this is false, factors like where you are seated, to the back, to the side, up front, under a chandelier, etc. will affect what the experience is, if any of those experiences differ from each other then you can not say that there is a true reflection of the experience, only that it is a partial reflection of the experience. I'd argue that the best experience is about where the conductor is, in that case I'd bet you would be able to here the movement.

@SteveWille:  Just because a picture frame on a wall is like window, it is not necessary for it to contain a photograph of a landscape to be “correct”.

@sunnohh:  Audiophillia is having a system good enough that you don’t enjoy recordings, got it

@AudioMasterclass replies to @sunnohh: Sadly, you may be correct. DM

@f8andbethere4:  Doesn't it also depend on where you are seated in the concert hall? I don't believe that there can be any such thing as replicating concert hall experience - everything is different in the two environments - seating position, acoustics, sound pressure, etc etc.

@ViktoriN.Nilsson:  Haven't we heard it before, a true narcissist stating: I'm right and a the rest is wrong. The analog world shows imperfections and is demanding to the knowledge of the basics of physics, the digital world on the other hand, deals with natural imperfections by filtering them away or change the pitch and reducing harmonic overtones. That's the cold and false fact of machines and thus AI

@f8andbethere4:  Concert hall experience for me is generally getting up and down out of my seat every 10 minutes to allow an endless stream of weak-bladdered folks to use the restroom.

@torew01:  Well, outside the critical distance in a concert hall it is more or less impossible to determine directions of sound. Espacially the low frequencies come from everywhere, not only in theory but also in practical experience. And even if we could hear directions; the angle of where the musicians move is so small from a listener in the concert hall, that it wouldn't be possible to notice in an anechoic chamber either.

@adamtaylor9617:  What a long winded and insufferable way to say " I didn't like something".

@markfischer3626:  That's the least of the problems. I'm an engineer and this is just a hobby for me. 50 years ago I developed a straightforward method for mathematically modeling, measuring, analyzing, and engineering sound fields with great accuracy. While no two concert halls, no two seats in the same concert hall, no two performances of the same music by the same performers heard in the same seat produce the same sound field, they all have aspects in common that are radically different from the sound fields produced by hi fi recordings heard in a home. The fields are measurably and audibly very different. It isn't the recordings that are wrong, it's the conceptual theory behind the engineering approach that is fatally flawed. No matter how much effort, skill, and money is thrown at this approach it will always fail. The result is a dull flat sounding pale lifeless immitation of the real thing. I've met many of the gurus of this industry and read and heard what others have to say. Frankly IMO none of them have the mental chops to understand the problem let alone solve it.

@christopherward5065:  There were house sounds with different recird labels and there were different experiences on offer. Then there were the multitrack spectaculars and dummy head binaurals. I still end up enjoying the orchestra and conductor's interpretation over all of 4he other considerations. The recording can act against the performance though, as you say. I think digital was the great leveller and recordings largely get out of the way. The clarinettist bouncing around the soundstage is weird in reality and would irritate enough for me to seek another recording if I wasn't in the mood for it.

@2011ppower:  audiophiles don't listen to music, they listen to equipment!

@Thefreakyfreek:  Got to be honest
Cant hear it dont care

Have a good day

@VladL_UA:  I want to tell you a story that, in my opinion, fits the theme of your channel very well.
Once upon a time, in the seventies of the last century, in the Soviet Union there lived a man who really liked the performance of a famous pianist. He followed him during his tours and recorded his performance on his old tape recorder right in the concert hall. I think it was even a monophonic tape recorder. It is not at all difficult to guess that the sound quality on these recordings was below average, but due to the fact that the performance itself was very good, it can be said Talented no one cared about the sound quality. I have two records of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, one is new and the other is old. Music from an old worn-out record instantly evokes emotions for me. Music does not touch at all. Of course, the performers and recordings on both records are different. I often listen to the old record and never listen to the new one.
Audiophilia should be fun! As soon as audiophilia starts to hurt, get rid of it! Don't suffer from Audiophilia - it's wrong!

@DeSinc replies to @VladL_UA: In my playlist for my favourite renditions of classical music, for Rachmaninoff's piano concerto no. 2 I chose an old VHS recording of the BBC's concert of 1998 over all the other higher quality recordings just for this exact reason - it's simply the best it's ever been played on record. The performance is not only split into two separate parts, but the cassette itself had multiple moments where the tape wandered and the pitch bent out of tune for a few seconds before correcting in an equally jarring fashion, and yet I can't bear to listen to any other rendition of the piece all the same.

@pablov1973:  The major problem I find is that since they used two microphones, quite close microphones, now clarinet have it own sound stage in front of the orchestra. In the 50s and early the 60s when for the entire recording they will use no more than 5/6 microphones this will never happen. Nowadays they use much more microphones than is really necessary. In fact this is not the only recording where the soloist is captured on 2/3 microphones and end up with the soloist having a full width presence, usually with a little bit of reverb on the side channels.

@billd9667 replies to @pablov1973: There is a thing called a “figure 8 stereo microphone”. It’s basically two mics in one. Using such a device would give you this result if the soloist moved just a few inches side to side, provided it’s pretty closely miked.

@nitromcclean:  I divide listening to recorded music into two categories; "classic" and "produced". With "classic" the makers want a registration of the musical performance that is as realistic as possible. With "produced" the makers want to create a new reality, for example by recording each musical part on a separate track of a multi-track and later editing, making it "more beautiful" and mixing it together. I get the impression that lovers of "classic" think they can strive for perfection. In my experience that is not the case and the best reproduction of musicians in a live environment does not exist. It matters a lot where you as a listener sit in the room in relation to the musicians. If you sit in a concert hall in the front center behind a conductor's back, it sounds completely different than if you sit all the way to the left or right at the back or even to the side. That is still in a room with well-maintained acoustics. With a live performance in a church or cathedral, the differences are even greater.

I myself have been recording classical music for about ten years. During the rehearsal I walked through the room to listen to where the music sounded best. That's where I placed my microphones. I then compared the sound my microphones recorded with the real sound by regularly walking back and forth between the live performance and the room where my equipment was located. I noticed that with the correct microphone position, the instruments were much better distinguished from each other with a clearer stereo image compared to listening directly to the musicians from a somewhat further distance, where most listeners sit during a live performance.
That is why choices are made in making a realistic possible registration of a musical performance, which in my opinion are a matter of personal preference instead of objectively right or wrong.

With that I actually want to say that the "dancing clarinet" is not necessarily wrong, but you either like it or you don't. And it is an illusion to imitate the "reality" in your living room. There is not one reality. And then I leave aside the fact that the acoustics of your living room are usually completely different from those of the room in which the musicians played. You can't turn off the acoustics of your living room. By the way, for me the moving through the stereo field of the "dancing clarinet" is a bit overdone, I don't like it either.

@kenwebster5053:  Well, your axium was pretty common place among HiFi enthusiasts back in the 60s.
I haven't heard it in a very long time now though.

I think it's more like faithfully reproduce the recording, but then highlight the aspects of the music, you happen to like. So, it may come down to music appreciation, which means being emotionally transported by the tonal qualities of the instruments or expression of a vocalist.

I am by the way not an audiophile, I have managed and maintained an auditorium sound system for a few decades, eventually got it to the point that my audiophile friend was blown with it, saying WOW actual true sound reinforcement. Well in reality I had a pretty near non-existent budget, but could buy replacement gear when something actually failed in a way I could not repair. So I only concentrated on clarity & tonal EQ balanced in favour of the audience. The on stage sound wasn't great though due offsetting to boundary effects in favour of the audience EQ. It was just a very poor stage non-design. So I do believe you can do quite a lot without spending much if toy target the main problems. However, the trick is correctly identifying what the main problems are. This is understanding is confirmed by the theory of errors in data analysis. The only way an system can be improved is by fixing the largest errors at their source. Any other improvement is completely swamped into the indictable category by the overwhelming magnitude of the largest problem.

Anyway, I like my HiFi at home, but believe me, it isn't a patch on my audiophile friends holiday home system. Listening to vocalists on that is truly an other worldly experience. I have seriously never heard a sound system so emotionally transporting.

@williamjueschke9960:  You’re right, the soloist should not be all over the place, more center.

@artysanmobile:  I have been a music producer for over 40 years and I’d like music fans to understand something fundamental, something maybe shocking. We producers are part of the performance we work so hard to present to a listener. We’re part of the band. We do that almost universally with the original performer’s blessings. They hire us to make the sound listeners hear. Virtually no one wants their recording to sound just like what is heard by any member of the audience at a live performance. We both insist that our result is better than that. I really don’t know where the word ‘faithful’ came to be associated with music recording. It is the goal of no one.

@carlosalvarez7445 replies to @artysanmobile: Maybe for low quality pop music, where talent is not enough to please the audience, the performers would eagerly request that mastering and mixing help to cover the gaps where emotion and skill fell short. But in classical music I seriously doubt any director would be half happy if posproduction messed up with an otherwise masterful performance. I suppose the exception would be in electronic music where performance, mastering and mixing very often do indeed fuse to expand an original idea, that is very much acceptable and may produce amazing results. But other than that, I don't buy it and when done it feels like cheap music the label pushed to get out quickly.

@Douglas_Blake_579 replies to @artysanmobile: Methinks you thinks too highly of yourself.
Your job is to capture the performance ... you are NOT part of the band nor would any competent musician want you thinking you are. You aren't playing music... you're not part of the performance.

@f8andbethere4 replies to @artysanmobile: The final sound of any recording is always down to the producer and mastering engineer. That's why some producers are more sought after than others.

@RudeRecording:  I record live events from smaller ensembles to 10+ piece jazz bands. I have recorded and broadcast symphony orchestras in my past. I have always endeavored to record the performance as accurately as possible. I prefer to use single point ambiance capture such as Blumlein, M/S, and sometimes even X/Y. I have never liked spaced pair such as shown for a soloist due to the exaggerated movement of that soloist. I would opine that the use of the spaced pair, if extreme panned could have caused the perceived overly wide image. Spaced pair is NOT the same as a dummy head or binaural microphone.
The audio engineer's thumb rule of both the equilateral triangle and the 5 times practical, 10 times ideal, distance rule will also apply. No listener listens to a an acoustic instrument a foot or less away from that instrument unless they are playing that instrument. If you put a mic or a pair of mics in that distance it will not be the sound that the audience hears unless it is properly mixed, amplitude, phase and pan, to the ambiance [audience perspective] microphone. Any of the close mics should be considered accent mics with the ambience [audience perspective] mic being dominate in the mix. I was taught when mixing those accent mics that pan amplitude and phase were matched, with phase reversed till the instrument dropped [ideally] out of the mix. After proper adjustment the phase would be returned to normal and should be in the proper stage perspective. I prefer to let the ambiance mic dictate the stage width and performer positioning.
Just MHO but I'm not a fan of ORTF/Decca Tree recordings and wouldn't use spaced pair for a soloist. I've used a dual capsule, single point microphone in either Blumlein or M/S for ambiance most of my recording career but recently started using a Soundfield [tetrahedron] microphone for ambience capture, it allows me more options in post for adjusting the room ambience.

@michaelb9664:  I find the dancing clarinet a lot less annoying than squashed dynamics and brick wall limiting. They are much bigger faults and yet they are deliberate.

@SamHocking:  Surely just a limitation of the Stereo recording and reproduction process? Record it using a binaural microphone (how humans actually hear a concert) and you'll not perceive the movement so much because binaural includes crosstalk, stereo omits it (unless artificially binauralised or sides reduced). This is where Spatial Audio can have advantages, especially on headphones.

@ronschauer839:  I subscribe to the Peter Walker quote: "the perfect amplifier is a straight wire with gain".
Whatever a recording is in its best available delivered form, is what it is.
Add nothing, take nothing away, just (hopefully) relax and enjoy the music.
If this makes me an audiophile, so be it. 😶
However, I neither claim to be one, nor aspire to be characterized as one.

99% of the time I listen to studio recordings of (relatively) modern music.
This, as opposed to recordings of "live" stage performances of any artist or genre.
So for me any perceived movements between the two channels are simply part of the final recording as it was intended to be, and I pay them no mind.

But yes indeed, a clarinet player leaping wildly from side to side on the stage in front of an orchestra would be quite a sight to behold.
Therefore, if the goal of the recording is to accurately reproduce the experience of being in the audience, such recording-induced movements are not a good thing.
Unless of course the clarinet player was in fact bouncing back and forth on a trampoline at the time... 🤔

@hanneskluytenaar6908:  A klarinet dancing all over the sound immage, is not my cup of thea. But i can live with it. More terrible is what happens a lot, is compressing all dynamics. That makes all music dull and uninteresting. I hope that this practice fades away.

Thanks for your thoughts.

@nicc5122:  Audiophile is wrong. Hi Fi, or HIGH FIDELITY is correct, take the definition of "fidelity" to be a true reproduction (intent) of what is being recorded, and "high" to be the best or closest to the best possible. 100% of nonsense, is still nonsense even if you pay £1000 for it, or can only afford 75% of nonsense, or it was quite cheap or budget.

Recently I saw an auction on a site with a 5 way bound set of IEC mains leads, apparently specialist for providing power to a related set of "HiFi" system components. Clearly no concept of the speed of light (electricity), and they weren't even silver, never mind "oxygen free copper"! Sorry, a bit off topic for this, but is the point an audiophile isn't really interested in it being a reproduction of a natural experience.

@taidee:  This is all fascinating, but I think you approach it from creator's point of view. The phrase "as the artist intended" even if most times it's the mastering engineer, is about the sound reproduced as close to the original material as possible even if that material itself is not made in a manner it should have been. In this case, You are correct and the Audiophiles are correct, you want it done the way classical music should be, audiophiles want to hear it as close to how it was mastered as possible, drunk clarinet or not 🤣

@dogratco:  I heard the effect in the recording before it was explained, but with the expectation there was a technical problem with the recording, my assumption was a microphone was out of phase with other mics. Back to binaural!

@StephenDriver-jk7hi:  Axioms: an adjacent issue is that of live v studio recordings, and the role of editing. Many (most?) classical performers feel that the presence of an audience brings a quality of communication that is absent in the studio. Herbert von Karajan, however, held that studio recording and editing allows a level of 'technical' perfection that he considered desirable. By 'technical', he mostly meant eliminating mistakes, poor intonation etc, i.e. musical technique - but he also meant correcting poor balance, eliminating extraneous noise etc, i.e. recording technique. Glenn Gould went further, retiring from live performance altogether to concentrate on studio recording; he thought that editing was fine. What's my point? Probably that even great musicians disagree on what a recording 'should' achieve. The corollary is perhaps that a true audiophile might prize a perfect recording of a mediocre performance over a poor recording of a superb performance? ('Discuss' - while I retreat behind the sofa for my own safety!)

@jamescarter3196 replies to @StephenDriver-jk7hi: I think it's worth mentioning that Gould also really got into singing along with his piano no matter how bad it sounded, and I don't know if or when he did that often during in-person performances, but it strikes me as one of those 'production-itis' things, where somebody spends so much time in the studio that they forget there's an 'audience' which they're depending on. Live audiences would be likely to leave if they had to hear a bunch of "LA LA LA LA" sung badly along with brilliant piano performances.

@northsurrey:  An instrument is a point source of audio so it's tempting to say it should be miked up with a single mic. If the instrument is miked with a close stereo pair and the orchestra with a Decca tree or similar, then two sound stages are produced - this is clearly wrong and produces the wandering effect in the Weber recording. This assumes the instrument mics are panned hard left and right. The instrument should be spot miked with a mono mic or narrow stereo mics which should be panned to match the performer's position on the stage for someone sitting a few metres behind the conductor. The soloist's mic and the main tree should be time aligned to minimise phase and image errors. Hall mics could also be used to pick up some of the ambiance of the hall but only if it has a good acoustic. It is nonsense to mic up a clarinet with a wide stereo pair as in the Weber and I see no logic in it. If spaciousness is needed then this should be captured by the orchestra and hall mics.

I don't know for sure but I suspect the two mics used on the Proms soloist were probably a main and backup as it was live on the radio. But it's possible they were being used as a narrow stereo pair which could be collapsed to mono in the event of a failure. The BBC balances at the proms are excellent and a showcase of how it should be done.

So IMHO an orchestral recording should be an accurate representation of the performance for someone sitting in a central position in the hall, ie the best seat in the house...isn't that what's wanted by music lovers, audiophiles and, dare I say, people like me who are both?

@darryldouglas6004:  Was the intent of this recording to reproduce the music hall or are we assuming this because that is usually the case? 😃

@brianstarr:  Give the buyer options, let them choose. Make two versions, why not? Maybe 3? We are all individuals. What we do in our homes is protected by the constitution. 😂

@billmilosz:  The SOUND of that "bad" clip is OK- not distorted or noisy. Musically, it is also OK. What's wrong is the recording technique, or more properly, the mic technique. I don't know why a recording engineer would place a stereo pair that close to the soloist and have them hard panned left and right so that the motion of the soloist would be exaggerated in the stereo image. A single mic would have been ideal in terms of a proper stereo perspective. There's many other mics more broadly spaced around the orchestra that you will get plenty of depth and "hall sound" from those in the mix (but they must be set up properly, too!)

There are many "audiophiles" that rarely go to live acoustic orchestral performances and who would never realize that this sonic perspective is all goofed up.

In a big hall - a typical symphony settings - when sitting anywhere in the audience you're not going to really hear the sound of the soloist moving around if they emote during their performance. The overall size of the space and your distance relationship to the soloist and to the walls will not let you really hear "motion" in the sound. In an opera as the performers run to and fro, you'll hear directional cues from that.

Now, in a smaller venue, with maybe a string quartet or a jazz ensemble, you might hear some motion- but not "ping pong" effects.

In the case of a pop or rock performance, it's all electronic anyway, you'll hear whatever the producer / sound mixer wants you to hear.

@stuartneil8682:  In my headphones, I hear a distant orchestra and a giant clarinet. Lat year I sat 5m away from the conductor in a small hall, listening to performances of music by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, one of the pieces was Copland’s Clarinet Concerto . I could hear a great deal of detail from the clarinet playing but, in your examples, as most music, the close placement of the microphone captures too much detail. This places the listeners virtual ear inches from the instrument. I used to play and still own a clarinet, so I know what it sounds like at zero distance, and it is not the same as at 5 m away, or even more so at 15m back in a hall. The proximity effect in recording gets worse with percussive sounds such as guitar strings being plucked, piano,etc..

@powermod6772 replies to @stuartneil8682: I made the opposite experience. I often have the feeling that being in a live concert is not so engaging, because the instruments are so far away. Actually, I can enjoy the music much more when I listen to the recording at home using headphones. Being closer to the instruments and literally hearing the strings of the beautiful instruments swinging is much more enjoyable for me.

@mantaproject:  I had no idea this would be so sensitive to you.
You should consult a therapist for this. (just kidding)
I understand your point of view, but I listen little to classical music and more to synthesizer music where some sounds revolve around the head and can go in different directions.
When I listen to a piece of classical music that also features this, I don't think it's a bad approximation of a live performance.
The conclusion is then probably that an audiophile is looking for the best possible live interpretation.
So.. I'm not an audiophile!
So.. I'm NOT wrong!
😉

@soundssimple1:  Interesting. I recommend that you discuss the following. Not all concert goers get your 'seat' , 3rd row middle...so where are they ? far left ?, far right ? in the gods ?. Circle P or Y ? Why do producers not produce work replicating your seating position ( as you heard it ! ) Technology today could do this . Pick your concert, pick you seating position , hit play on the streaming device ( or custom made vinyl ? ) and enjoy .Discuss.

@chocomalk:  A live recording in my mind should be more of a documentary than an attempt at entertainment.

@jamescarter3196 replies to @chocomalk: That's just a meaningless thing to say which ignores 'recording technology' and 'the audience' as factors. You're among people who actually do this stuff and you're trying to make a differentiation that isn't really an 'either/or' thing. Music is entertainment. If you don't make the recording sound good, it won't be entertaining, and people who want to hear live albums are looking to be entertained, not 'informed'. Documentaries are about information. These things can mix but not all the time.

@chocomalk replies to @chocomalk: A documentary is about capturing an event as it happens without alteration. Same thing applies to a live recording, it's not an engineers job to add anything to another artists work. And it's up to the entertainer to entertain. @@jamescarter3196

@Beatsbasteln:  i don't really care if any of these things are problems :D but what i do know is that the more you play the so-called "problem clip" the more i want to actually stand in this forest and listen to this tune in person

@Catandbeats:  It seems like some sort of widener was used vs an autopanner on just the flute mic. You can also hear the string section pop inside out randomly. After checking the album as well, you can hear this on every single track... It seems like a "thought out" creative decision vs a random mistake.

@howardskeivys4184:  I recently watched a YouTube review of a pair of speakers. The reviewer was using a recording of a live performance of a Jaz quartet. I’d actually attended that gig, stood about 5 rows from the front. Anyways, the reviewer remarked that he could hear the vocalist swaying. I can con confirm that at that gig, she did sway, but I couldn’t hear it, because she was singing into a solo Mike which she was holding. So, when she moved, the Mike moved with her. Plus, she was singing into a Mike which transmitted her voice over multiple static speakers around that Jaz lounge, so anyone present would have heard in the most part her voice reproduced via those static speakers.

Hifi, or high fidelity represents the degree of exactness to which something is copied. If the production crew or audio technicians artificially introduce left to right channel time differences to mimic swaying, are they not deviating from the original? Very much like your instrumentalist dancing around th stage. If an audiophiles goal is high fidelity, does this not go against the grain. All that having been said, how many recordings do audiophiles have of performances they actually witnessed? So that’s probably why they’re not overly concerned with the recording!

@CrashSomeMore:  I've been enlightened, entertained and trolled simultaneously.

@kevinmccahill7522:  I think I’m going to agree with you on the ‘wrong’ thing. Studio technique is a fundamental part of recorded rock music but classical should be reproduced faithfully. I tried to close Mike an orchestra once and the conductor absolutely hated it. I ended up backing up and using just three mics And he liked it a little bit better lol

@LeeBergerMediaProd:  While there’s less than 400 comments I thought I’d offer advice on your lighting. I hope you won’t mind. Your background photo has a large window to camera right. The key source. You have a bright cool light to camera left and a dim warm light to camera right. I recommend you reverse the key and fill lights to match the background.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @LeeBergerMediaProd: You're very observant but not the first to notice this. My view is that my lighting is set up as a counterpoint to the 'natural' lighting in the room. Since my right side is my best side that governs the position of the lights. I could reverse the background of course but then I think the issue would be matching my lighting with the 'natural' light. I'll probably stay as I am for now and consider the issue when I redecorate.

@user-vk1qs1bq2v:  Anyone who thinks a recording captures a live performance is seriously deceived. There are so many barriers - mics, mic placement, venue acoustics, recording media, mastering, playback equipment, listening room to name a few. The best we can aspire to is enjoyable music that survives all the barriers this process entails. I love listening on my humble desktop speakers, my many headphones and expensive "audiophile' systems. They bring the music in different ways but in the end it is the music that counts. A $6000 dollar audio cable won't improve the music. .

@mike_junmin:  I think this comes down to the panning problem. 

I think each track or channel from microphones should always be panned to the exact point they were placed on the stage, and that those be preferably omnidirectional microphones. This also solves recreating time difference of a signal in different microphones and creates more realistic and vibrant width of stage

You'd think they wouldn't mess this up after Decca practically perfected the technique.

@mike_junmin replies to @mike_junmin: I think the clarinet was dancing around in the stereo image probably because they panned soloist's left mic to hard or mid left and right to hard or mid right(sounded more like hard than mid). Just place them where they were placed in the recording and it should be okay I think

@digitaldosage1979:  I just dont get it... The whole audiophile thing. I'm genuinely asking this as a question, but from what I gather, most audiophiles want the purest sound possible, right? This even leaks into "what it sounded like in the room/studio" territory, right? If so, my main question is why? I would absolutely hate it if every album I listened to "sounded like it did in the room". My expectation for most albums is that there's a sense of hyperrealism there. Using tracking, mixing and mastering as an art form to add more creative color and deliver a product that is pleasing and can excite my emotions in a positive or even negative manner. If I want to hear a band in a more raw, "natural" format, I'll just go see them live, even though I know there's someone behind the mixing desk there as well. I don't know, I've just never understood the whole audiophile debate. I'm all for using any equipment that is appropriate in order to accomplish this, and I also understand the desire to have a good playback system, but outside of that I just don't get it.

@robertbailey8003:  What you didn't say was the reason for this "dancing about" of the clarinet. BTW, I listened to this piece on my PC with a Dell sound bar. The speakers are about 40cm apart. I identified the "fault" on the first listen, but it wasn't bouncing about as much as you suggested. Probably due to the short distance between the two speakers.

@ravipeiris7602:  Music supposed stir the emotions... I don't see the point of this critical analysis , right and the wrong way.... especially the good old days argument...
chacun a son goût, n'est pas?

@nominevacans8173:  tbh, i like it too. it adds to the expression.

@mjloudspeaker:  SIRE, it's show business, lol... cheers!

@winekey:  Your schtick as sudo intellectual know it all enlightening the masses is so comically pretentious it’s some of the best entertainment on YouTube…the world would be a might more boring without narcissists like you with access to an av production team preaching dogma as matter of fact …many thanks for your axioms…bravo 😂

@marctestarossa:  It comes down to the perceived distance between the performance and the listener. And it works the same in pop or rock music: if you have more space and movement within the stereo imaging you get a much more intimate and the more things bleed into another (not tonally, just in position on the perceived stage) the more "far away" it sounds. Like you were in the second row hearing the difference in the violin facing different directions and if you had been on the other end of the venue you probably wouldn't. But I think this is the magic of recording. You can make a performance sound like you're front of stage or you can make it seem like you're on stage right in the action. And the axiom you brought up is quite useless imho, because then you just would set up a binaural mic at the sweet spot of the venue to achieve exactly that.

@mike_junmin replies to @marctestarossa: From my experience sitting at the front of the audience in concerts where the soloist dances around, the actual placement of the sound within the width of the stage barely, if ever, change. The tone and the projection that I specifically hear change quite a bit if the f holes(in case of string instruments) face completely different positions, but not the placement of sounds.

You are right in mentioning the relationship between the stereo image and the perceived distance, but This comes more down to clear placement and actual width(which I am adamant that they provide with outriggers and not by hard panning the main microphones) of the image, rather than instruments jumping around.

His axiom is generally regarded to be true amongst classical musicians, fans and engineers. Funnily enough, I don't believe binaural microphones would really provide the best result. Traditional Decca trees with outriggers and spotlight(don't remember what they call it) to bring out solo instruments within the orchestra to recreate projection is the way to go imo

@10sassafras:  I wasn’t bothered from the snippet you played but I do like the idea of capturing the concert hall experience more than the creative audio approach. Pop music, on the other hand, plays with different rules.

@bekuma:  I love your channel. You remind me of Paul McCartney. I love that you are speaking the truth and sharing facts.

@titntin5178:  Hi fidelity is pursuit of fidelity to the original recording. If the recording engineer or the producer wishes to 'play' with the recording, no matter how distasteful we might find it, the goal of any Hi Fi purist will be to recreate it, warts an all.

As someone who was Audio engineer in several recording studios, and might be considered an Audiophile at home (£10K plus system), I have long appreciated that the two do not equate in terms of your approach to fidelity and describing your 'Dancing Clarinet' as wrong is simply a viewpoint that others may or may not share. I wouldnt capture it that way, but thats simply a point of view.

Trying to suggest a clasical recording should always try to replicate the concert hall is where YOU are wrong. It can be captured and presented in any way the producer or engineer sees fit - their creativity does not need to be boxed in by your opinion and there is no 'right way' to record anything (other than avoiding distrotion, clipping etc). Would you care to show me an accepted definition which conflicts with this? I thought not.
You deperately try and paint yourself as a resonable and considered person, but in reality you appear to simply be judging others by your own belief system and desperately trying to belittle any other beliefs for hits.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @titntin5178: Aha, you're one of those commenters whose opinion is better than mine. You're welcome to it.

@goncalocarvalho4917:  You are correct, it is absolutely silly for a soloist to sound like it is flying around the sound field lol
Oh and you would not notice that soloist in the violin concert because of parallax, in the recording sometimes this can happen because the relative distance from instrument to microphone is much larger than the same movement in apparent movement relative to the seat in the concert all

@yvesfrancoisritmo:  that effect should be used on an Esquivel or Andrew Popp stereo recording, BUT NOT on a classical recording.
I wonder if Roland Hendrikx clarinet was niched with 2 microphones and put on L and R - this perhaps caused the issue along with his movement
I've been in the studio a lot so that is what I heard
PS I see you spoke of this after I wrote this!

@Downhuman74:  For the longest time, my only version of Led Zeppelin's Physical Graffiti was a needle-drop I had made of the vinyl on cassette. Eventually, I got the CD but all of the sudden it had a different impact on me for some reason. I chalked it up to the change in format and eventually got used to the way it sounded even though something ate away at me just a tiny bit every time I listened -- it barely registered but it was still there. A couple of years ago, I dug out my old cassette deck and hooked it up to my system and found a box of recorded cassettes I had been holding onto. That needle-drop was among them and it eventually found its way into the deck. The second Custard Pie started playing I felt something click back into place and I couldn't quite figure it out right away. But all of the sudden, it felt just...well, right. I listened through right to the end with the joy that only comes from rediscovery but still I was taken aback at how a needle-drop on a crappy Memorex cassette somehow sounded better than every other version I owned. I switched over to the CD and finally it hit me -- my needle-drop was playing the album slower. It was almost imperceptible, but enough for my part of my brain to pick it up. Turns out the version of the album I had fallen in love with all those years ago was actually "wrong". Everything is subjective when it comes down it, man.

@Thin447Line:  So what's the solution? The sound engineer should only use one microphone for the soloist? Or how about attaching the microphone to the instrument? Solo singers can carry the microphone with them around the stage if they feel like dancing around like a drunken monkey.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @Thin447Line: Exactly. One microphone for the soloist. Attaching it to the instrument can work well for live sound but exposes other problems for recording.

@grandadgamer8390:  Proud of myself for getting that first time 😂 Fully understand, the sound engineer just couldn't leave those pots alone 😅

@AudioMasterclass replies to @grandadgamer8390: I have noticed in my observations that sound engineers ofter prefer 'do more' to 'do less'. There's a sweet spot in between and I think it's usually closer to 'do less'.

@gerardoromano3436:  I give up.I am NOT audiophilre. In 5 differennt audio setups from friend studio setup. My own system . different speakers DACs and sorces . streaming. This youtubr video. All I and many friends can hear is the clarinet barely shifted to the left. But steady as a stone in the soundstage. Are you trying to fool us all to get more viewers ? If so well I cant find a word to describe your lack off ethics (sorry english is not my langage. Excuse my mistakes)

@1337wafflezz:  perhaps i’m deaf but the clarinet in the “problem” clip didn’t really jump around all that much. they were always located in the left stage. I noticed more some slight rustling in the right stage barely audible

@fernandofonseca3354:  Hi David, I know you are not an electronics guy and your mantra is down to freq resp, dist and noise even though that these are typically steady state parameters - not transient stuff, (i.e. the ignored sigma coeficient of the laplace transform), which music is greatly made of. That said, I would like to hear your thoughts on the so called "opamp sound" and how would you tie that to your mantra. Thanks in advance.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @fernandofonseca3354: I could look into this further but in my experience from the past I found myself considering noise, slew rate, and now and then open loop gain. I would definitely not call myself an expert but I have definitely dabbled. I very much doubt that M. Laplace’s amazing transforms will be making an appearance.

@Tony-he8ze:  Dude, I don't get your point. I heard a clarinet a bit left of center enhanced by room ambience. Maybe you should chill your prudish criticism and get a life.

@fernandofonseca3354:  Years ago as a spectator to a live performance of Carmina Burana, I noticed that what I was hearing was not the direct sound of certain percussion instruments like the glockespiel and the tubular bell but their reflection coming from a rather tall, fully exposed side wall. That certainly got my brain distracted in resolving conflicting information rather than enjoying the music to the fullest... which to be honest, had other... challenges as one of the singers was consistently late in delivering his part!🤭... But that is the thing! It's part and parcel of a live performance!

@tomstickland:  Heard it straight away on my fairly good Sennheiser headphones via a DAC Magic DAC. The sound jumped left to right and all over the place. It didn't remove the emotional impact of the track for me.

Did they mix the two mics to full left and full right panning then?

@AudioMasterclass replies to @tomstickland: I think they are panned in a bit. If they were hard left and right I'd think there would be more extreme movement.

@alex_stanley:  I did notice the clarinet bouncing all over the place, but I listen to so much electronic music that I just assume weird stereo effects in a recording are intended. Because I don't listen to acoustic music, my focus is not on high fidelity recreation of live acoustic music. Synthetic music is freed from the constraints of trying to create a facsimile of physical reality. For me, the ideal concert hall experience for amplified music is an acoustically treated room and the best sounding pro audio sound system available. Unfortunately, very few music venues actually provide that experience.

@larryeckerdt9750:  I would comment on your subject matter, but I was so put off by your image changing depth and frame location (almost like a demented toad) on your edits, that I could not concentrate on the audio concerns you were trying to identify. 😱

@guyjohnson8848:  To me a Real Audiophile would want the recording to be as good, and (acording to genre) as real as possible.
I hated that clash of perspectives in that mad recording of lovely playing to be ghastly. Maybe the mixer/producer should have used a M-S technique and narrowed the perspective of the soloist. Or just used the top mic, as the lower two are separated and I wonder if they'd 'narrow down' nicely to near mono...
PS I have grown to like your videos that get on with the information (unlike umpteen waffly videos) and your style. Your face movements initiating the AI ones make me chuckle. TTFN

@uzirshah2686:  The problem is, the sound movement from your clip can be heard with an $5 earbud. How is that an audiophile test? If $5 earbud can hear it, then you have absolutely no idea what "audiophile" actually means. And you receive more views everyday because you are justifying your error, reverse pshychology...

@cubemerula5264:  I regret the fact you haven't compared this to the hand-held camera imperative of the modern age. I have a feeling this is done to make standing still in front of a screen more easily bearable and thus prolonged. I wonder if this audio equivalent does the same thing to occupy people's attention for longer?

I'm not particularly fond of this "since it can't be perfectly faithful, just do whatever". Even worse, to think that then "entertainment" should be the guiding principle... No. Do it "the best possible".

@prentrupathome5319:  Are you 100% sure the effect comes from the edit not the performance? I had a friend who used to dance around whilst playing the clarinet.

@vandalfamiliatv3080:  Some people use hardware to enjoy music. Audiophiles do the quite opposite 😅

@MC-jv6fs:  I would like you to speak about some Hifi-Equipment like dumpers for amplifiers or different cables, and i would like to see you making a blind test , hearing some random hifi-systems and explaining you what you can hear. -- Interesting channel !

@henrikpetersson3463:  I don't like the movement of the clarinet personally, it's a bit too extreme when listening on headphones. I would not have mixed it that way myself, and I would probably have used a mono mic if putting it up that close.
But if the aim is to replicate the listening experience of being in a concert hall then it has failed in other areas as well, although the others are not that prominent. The mix sounds nothing like you would experience it at the concert hall. And for me that's not a problem. In fact a lot of times I much more enjoy ensembles that have been recorded and mixed in more of a virtual space if it enhances the experience. Composers back in the day were constricted to the live ensemble experience as they had no close micing, mixing consoles or artificial reverbs. I bet many of them would have loved to be able to experiment with that as you pointed out. Personally I feel that you can capture a lot more detail and "soul" of the instruments if you use different recording techniques which hearing them recorded "as is" in a concert hall might make them a bit bland and less engaging to listen to.
All in all, for my personal taste the movement of the clarinet is too much in that recording. It's not "wrong" though. Especially as the mix and recording at a whole isn't pretending to be a natural capture.
I think it's problematic to start a video by pointing at a group of people and calling them out. That will automatically set them in a defensive state, which I believe is why you had so many people claiming that they liked the movement of the clarinet.

@danender5555:  This audio snob is just amusing.

@xxxYYZxxx:  Where "immersion" in the music is the audiophile context, pop audio quizzes are "out of context". There's no reason any given audiophile would notice a recording flaw while not also being immersed in the music, or even if did notice, give any attention to it... unless or until they were "immersed" in the music, in which case they'd rave about how good their equipment was to reveal the flaw... 😉

@joeldoxtator9804:  You are correct that the issue is not an audiophile issue as the stated goal of an audiophile is to replay recordings as transparently as possible.
This enters the realm of mastering tracks from multi track recordings.
Ideally, you would have multiple channels recording the player in close proximity, and then average them out to create an even image that is levels correct.
Alternatively, you could choose to isolate each channel and amplify the image swaying from left to right to create and exaggerated image that maintains the correct level as it tracks the subject.
All of which is out of the audiophiles control.
This is typically why I suggest to people that for 90% of their listening content, they are far better off investing in a quality stereo setup over a home theater setup.
This is because 90% of your listening is only mastered for stereo image which is two channels.
5.1 and up to 7.4.2 is only reserved for movies and high quality ones at that.
This is the most important thing in our control.
Play the correct channeled content on the correct channel equipment.

@ziofrenko:  and don't dare express the opinion of a composer who didn't even remotely think about the fact that one day music could be recorded and in what way.
but who do you think you are?! ahahahahaha

@ziofrenko:  the problem you expose is the basis of the recording:
everyone must forget that the real event, which most ignorant people draw inspiration from, does not exist.
every seat in the room sounds differently, every person sitting listens to a different thing, so real events do not exist because infinite real events exist.
each microphone positioned 360° around an instrument records a different thing, moreover...
so the fundamental question of the whole issue is: what is the right position?
The only point on which a recording of an orchestra can be based is the position of the conductor, who is also the only one who will then tell the technicians during mixing if what he hears in control room resembles what he heard on the podium.
since the conductor is 1 meter from the soloist, and is neither in the second row nor 50 meters from the stage, the conductor felt the sound move, it is inevitable.
everything else is boring and bullshit, I'm sorry.
Bottom line: you didn't understand anything.

@ziofrenko:  headphone is not a Stereo trasducer... they are Binaural trasducer, so is obviusly that with Headphone the "problem" is more obvius and can be to much. with simulator, and with stereo monitors put in correct way in my studio, with good room processing, the effect is pleasant.
but it is enough to turn on or off a room and monitor speakers simulator (as well as a headphone "rectifier") to understand it...

@filipnarada:  It immediately struck me in the former video. A recording of classical music should sound 'natural'. An engineer should not ad an artistic layer. I'm a pro clarinetist and home studio owner myself, and I would really dislike it if it would be me as the soloist (I don't come close to the amazing performing qualities of Roeland). A recording like this of Martin Frost (he almost dances playing clarinet) would sound as if he jumped off stage.

@AudioMasterclass replies to @filipnarada: Comment readers may care to take a look... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7OaQMiJc3o&ab_channel=NorwegianChamberOrchestra DM

@StevenMaes-zt1pu:  "Transforming a Humble Frog into a Majestic Elephant:
I thoroughly enjoyed your comments in the two YouTube videos you dedicated to a recording I made with Roeland Hendrikx. You present it in a Top Gear-style that reminds me of Jeremy Clarkson—little relevant information and a focus on entertainment.
Interestingly, it was a German colleague, a stranger to me, who brought your video to our collective attention. He regarded it as an enigmatic and unsubstantiated performance. Can we truly hold him accountable for his viewpoint? Your portrayal as an audio connoisseur in the realm of classical music, committed to furnishing discerning audiophiles with pertinent knowledge, is unquestionably commendable… Nevertheless, I am compelled to scrutinize your modus operandi.
Your meticulous approach seemingly suggests a profound dedication to scientific rigour. Yet, it leaves one yearning for specifics regarding the methodology of your listening test: the nature of the acoustic environment, the chosen loudspeakers, the use of calibrated headphones, the conspicuous absence of a dedicated vector scope such as RTW in favour of a plugin, the employment of a professional-grade headphone amplifier, among other intriguing aspects. It piques my curiosity as to why, in your capacity as a specialist, you refrained from requesting a High-Resolution audio file, a decision I would have gladly accommodated and informed you at the same time that the two Schoeps microphones you refer to as the so-called stereo pair with MK 2's are not used for the clarinet. Although you are quite convinced they are but I must disappoint you only the MK 4 cardioid microphone serves as support for the soloist.
In my practice, I favour an OCCO main pair , with 2 omnidirectional microphones positioned approximately 530mm apart, yielding a Stereo Recording Angle (SRA) of approximately 110 degrees. This, I must emphasise, is not an extraordinary approach but just craftsmanship and a choice I made. The movements of Roeland, which you've noted, are inherent to the natural gestures of an artist within the principal microphone pair. Is this wrong?
In closing, with a touch of naivety, earnestly hoping that, as you continue to share your audiophile wisdom with the world, it is underpinned by a robust foundation. Anything less, I fear, even if you make a 3 th video may sow the seeds of perplexity among those who seek clarity.

@rydaug79:  I like the idea of the an instrument traveling around the stereo image but not but not varying from note to note. It can add another dimension to the music. Think flight of the bumble bee with a flute moving around your speakers like a bee flying around you.

@anonamouse5917:  I heard an artifact in the right speaker. It could have been the sound of the valves working. I don't listen to music like this very often so I've got nothing to compare it against.
I didn't hear the usual suspects (heavy compression, tape hiss, poor quality mic, clipping).
I consider myself a budget audiphile (C$2,500 amp and headphones + computer as the source).

@seancurtin5131:  Happy to note this was a defect impossible to know of with a mono speaker system. However I hear you on unnessasary channel bouncing. Wanted on Pink Floyd's dark side of the moon but not for a classical soloist. The only annoying aspect of your show is that annoying AI thing, itS gyrating on the nerves and horribly annoying but hey, maybe that's an issue with my listened experience right? Thanks for sharing.

@evenblackercrow4476:  And it's not just the music type/genre and the performance environment. Take something earthy such as folk and native music. As the maestro said, the dancing clarinet is a special effect and may be sold as such.... I'm a better educated consumer for listening to these 12:57 minutes.

@Joshualbm:  So what does this make you? An audiophilologist? Anyhow, no stereo recording will ever reproduce realism. It is impossible. Only with multiple mics, channels and mirrored playback component is this possible. What you hear live is the net effect of what is going on in that room from you position and you know it's live because of how it sounds from where you are listening, whether that position changes or not. Whatever techniques the audio engineer tries, it's always going to be a compromise due to the extremely limiting fact of how the recording is achieved, mixed and mastered. So if, in the case of this clarinet flying about, the engineer had a bad case of mike bleed or was deliberately panning or miking to capture all the directions the clarinetist turned during playing, well that's annoying for sure. But since you're sensitive to all of this, in such a way as to get rather worked up, I'd say you're more of an audiophile than most people who call themselves as such.

@ericmc6482:  Linn is correct in that within reason any recording should listenable.
That said some systems can 'paper over the cracks' and make any recording 'pleasing' but that is not accuracy.
IME a good system is one that reproduces the content FR and dynamics and 3D imaging accurately but without omissions and without emphasis.
Some 'well regarded' and overly expensive systems are described as 'accurate' or 'revealing' but IME this usually means unnatural emphasis that gets fatiguing real fast.
Good sound is all about natural sounding timbre and 3D separation and 3D location and 3D depth and IME most 'hi-fi' systems fail these elementary criterion.
Also most 'audiophiles' are listening to fundamentally flawed systems and become hypnotised or entrained to thiis fundamentally wrong sound.
A few sessions of live sound engineering/mixing would cure most 'lounge audiophiles' of their misconceptions.
On my system I am transpoerted into the live recording space and multitracked studio recordings are presented as a collage of sounds blending into a mastered whole, both are forms of the art.
On my system clean clear recordings can be preseent and spectacuar, and lousy recordings just sound a bit griity and/or limited in FR/dynamics etc but the original goove still shines through without getting nasty sounding.
For me ths is what music reproduction is all about, when the system is good enough you can forget about the system and just revel or awe in the music.
Peace.

@ericmc6482:  Sounds fine to me on mono phone or BT speaker lol

@rainbowgr13:  As @vladluaky wrote audiophilia is fun and he is correct.There is a red line when you listen to the music.If you pass that line you have caught in the webb of the spider.The music we hear is recorded processed mixed and we hear the final version of the production.We liked it or not for us to decide but we can do nothing to change it.That's it.Sometimes they make a new version of the same recording as remaster or remixed with some extras.Every producer has a different technick and different approach for the final outcome.If a band or an orchestra have four concerts it the same area and watch all of them they are not will be the exactly the same.And if they record all of them they will find differences.But if you go down to this you will loose the pleasure of listening and enjoying the music.The music is performed by peopole and not from AI robots.At least not today i don;t know about tomorrow.

@stephengriffin1541:  I think in a way that studio technicians, mixers, mastering technicians shouldn’t be excluded from the creative process and offer tremendous listening experience potential to the audiophile.🤔

@mickeystewart4504:  I heard it like that and thought the clarinet was way forward and pictured a butterfly darting about

@tubefreeeasy:  I’d love to hear Kraftwerk’s new Audibahn (3D) with several musicians swaying their instruments around during the traffic moments.
With trombone, sax, trumpets, and whistles in movement.

@MultiPetercool:  Most 1960’s Pop music records was engineered to sound good on a single speaker AM radio.

@philipcooper8297:  Let's face it, audiophilia is not always about the enjoyment of music. For many it is a hobby of stats, specs and very expensive toys such as amps, headphones, speakers, DACs, cables, power conditioners... 🙂

@jakobgooijer:  as a wine connoisseur grows his taste over the years, as a perfume maker perfects his smell, so an audio and music lover trains his hearing. Taste, smell and hearing improve as long as you keep triggering them. And with that, there are some gaps in your fun and exciting story. Your approach to audio and music is positive, funny and lively. Greetings Jakob ( no ,I'm not an audiophile in the sense of money)

@AudioMasterclass replies to @jakobgooijer: I’ll be making a video soon for impecunious audiophiles. DM

@jakobgooijer replies to @jakobgooijer: I had to translate that word since I'm Dutch 😊

@TheStarahut:  Am I to understand that this channel is meant to be a targeted insult to people because of their hobbies? Or is it a kind of simpleton evangelism? Or are you just making money?

@AudioMasterclass replies to @TheStarahut: I recommend you try again to understand, consider, and appreciate the issue covered in this video. If that doesn’t work for you, you need to watch less challenging channels. DM

@tifiwilo replies to @TheStarahut: No, it's a targeted insult to people who justify their hobbies by evangelizing pseudoscience.

@stuartdarling1620:  So effectively what you're saying is they had two mics on the clarinet and they were panned too far left and right such that the appearance of the clarinet was unrealistically wide and as such all movement is exaggerated. I have the same problem when using piano samples on gigs where they have panned the low end hard left and the high end hard right, meaning that with a large PA the piano appears 50ft wide. Not accurate, this is why I send most of my acoustic sounds on a gig to the sound man in MONO such that they can position my sound in the mix where I am situated on stage. Then my keyboards emanate from the same area where I am physically situated leading to a more natural stereo image

@AudioMasterclass replies to @stuartdarling1620: Considering that word is that the higher mic wasn’t used then yes. The mics could have been panned inward, I would then check in mono. Or probably I’d just use one mic. Regarding your piano I agree totally. Worst case is a Leslie loudspeaker close miked and panned wide. DM

@jaymacintyre1777:  I noticed immediately the way the soloist is miked, so it jumps left and right in the stereo image. To me, it's not a problem because it's a recording---something different from a live performance. Both are valid in my opinion.

@DrWrapperband:  Recording are never "perfect", they are what they are. Audio systems are to get the best out of that source.

@verdedoodleduck:  Thank you for another cold shower. :o :) You carry a lot of useful information in these videos along with the lament. I confess to being guilty of enjoying it every time you say 'audiophile'. :)

@MartinPHellwig:  Your argument requires that the axiom "the sound should reflect that what the audience in the concert hears" to be true, I'd argue that this is false, factors like where you are seated, to the back, to the side, up front, under a chandelier, etc. will affect what the experience is, if any of those experiences differ from each other then you can not say that there is a true reflection of the experience, only that it is a partial reflection of the experience. I'd argue that the best experience is about where the conductor is, in that case I'd bet you would be able to here the movement.

@SteveWille:  Just because a picture frame on a wall is like window, it is not necessary for it to contain a photograph of a landscape to be “correct”.

@sunnohh:  Audiophillia is having a system good enough that you don’t enjoy recordings, got it

@AudioMasterclass replies to @sunnohh: Sadly, you may be correct. DM

@f8andbethere4:  Doesn't it also depend on where you are seated in the concert hall? I don't believe that there can be any such thing as replicating concert hall experience - everything is different in the two environments - seating position, acoustics, sound pressure, etc etc.

@ViktoriN.Nilsson:  Haven't we heard it before, a true narcissist stating: I'm right and a the rest is wrong. The analog world shows imperfections and is demanding to the knowledge of the basics of physics, the digital world on the other hand, deals with natural imperfections by filtering them away or change the pitch and reducing harmonic overtones. That's the cold and false fact of machines and thus AI

@f8andbethere4:  Concert hall experience for me is generally getting up and down out of my seat every 10 minutes to allow an endless stream of weak-bladdered folks to use the restroom.

@torew01:  Well, outside the critical distance in a concert hall it is more or less impossible to determine directions of sound. Espacially the low frequencies come from everywhere, not only in theory but also in practical experience. And even if we could hear directions; the angle of where the musicians move is so small from a listener in the concert hall, that it wouldn't be possible to notice in an anechoic chamber either.

@adamtaylor9617:  What a long winded and insufferable way to say " I didn't like something".

@markfischer3626:  That's the least of the problems. I'm an engineer and this is just a hobby for me. 50 years ago I developed a straightforward method for mathematically modeling, measuring, analyzing, and engineering sound fields with great accuracy. While no two concert halls, no two seats in the same concert hall, no two performances of the same music by the same performers heard in the same seat produce the same sound field, they all have aspects in common that are radically different from the sound fields produced by hi fi recordings heard in a home. The fields are measurably and audibly very different. It isn't the recordings that are wrong, it's the conceptual theory behind the engineering approach that is fatally flawed. No matter how much effort, skill, and money is thrown at this approach it will always fail. The result is a dull flat sounding pale lifeless immitation of the real thing. I've met many of the gurus of this industry and read and heard what others have to say. Frankly IMO none of them have the mental chops to understand the problem let alone solve it.

@christopherward5065:  There were house sounds with different recird labels and there were different experiences on offer. Then there were the multitrack spectaculars and dummy head binaurals. I still end up enjoying the orchestra and conductor's interpretation over all of 4he other considerations. The recording can act against the performance though, as you say. I think digital was the great leveller and recordings largely get out of the way. The clarinettist bouncing around the soundstage is weird in reality and would irritate enough for me to seek another recording if I wasn't in the mood for it.

@2011ppower:  audiophiles don't listen to music, they listen to equipment!

@Thefreakyfreek:  Got to be honest
Cant hear it dont care

Have a good day

@VladL_UA:  I want to tell you a story that, in my opinion, fits the theme of your channel very well.
Once upon a time, in the seventies of the last century, in the Soviet Union there lived a man who really liked the performance of a famous pianist. He followed him during his tours and recorded his performance on his old tape recorder right in the concert hall. I think it was even a monophonic tape recorder. It is not at all difficult to guess that the sound quality on these recordings was below average, but due to the fact that the performance itself was very good, it can be said Talented no one cared about the sound quality. I have two records of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, one is new and the other is old. Music from an old worn-out record instantly evokes emotions for me. Music does not touch at all. Of course, the performers and recordings on both records are different. I often listen to the old record and never listen to the new one.
Audiophilia should be fun! As soon as audiophilia starts to hurt, get rid of it! Don't suffer from Audiophilia - it's wrong!

@DeSinc replies to @VladL_UA: In my playlist for my favourite renditions of classical music, for Rachmaninoff's piano concerto no. 2 I chose an old VHS recording of the BBC's concert of 1998 over all the other higher quality recordings just for this exact reason - it's simply the best it's ever been played on record. The performance is not only split into two separate parts, but the cassette itself had multiple moments where the tape wandered and the pitch bent out of tune for a few seconds before correcting in an equally jarring fashion, and yet I can't bear to listen to any other rendition of the piece all the same.

@pablov1973:  The major problem I find is that since they used two microphones, quite close microphones, now clarinet have it own sound stage in front of the orchestra. In the 50s and early the 60s when for the entire recording they will use no more than 5/6 microphones this will never happen. Nowadays they use much more microphones than is really necessary. In fact this is not the only recording where the soloist is captured on 2/3 microphones and end up with the soloist having a full width presence, usually with a little bit of reverb on the side channels.

@billd9667 replies to @pablov1973: There is a thing called a “figure 8 stereo microphone”. It’s basically two mics in one. Using such a device would give you this result if the soloist moved just a few inches side to side, provided it’s pretty closely miked.

@nitromcclean:  I divide listening to recorded music into two categories; "classic" and "produced". With "classic" the makers want a registration of the musical performance that is as realistic as possible. With "produced" the makers want to create a new reality, for example by recording each musical part on a separate track of a multi-track and later editing, making it "more beautiful" and mixing it together. I get the impression that lovers of "classic" think they can strive for perfection. In my experience that is not the case and the best reproduction of musicians in a live environment does not exist. It matters a lot where you as a listener sit in the room in relation to the musicians. If you sit in a concert hall in the front center behind a conductor's back, it sounds completely different than if you sit all the way to the left or right at the back or even to the side. That is still in a room with well-maintained acoustics. With a live performance in a church or cathedral, the differences are even greater.

I myself have been recording classical music for about ten years. During the rehearsal I walked through the room to listen to where the music sounded best. That's where I placed my microphones. I then compared the sound my microphones recorded with the real sound by regularly walking back and forth between the live performance and the room where my equipment was located. I noticed that with the correct microphone position, the instruments were much better distinguished from each other with a clearer stereo image compared to listening directly to the musicians from a somewhat further distance, where most listeners sit during a live performance.
That is why choices are made in making a realistic possible registration of a musical performance, which in my opinion are a matter of personal preference instead of objectively right or wrong.

With that I actually want to say that the "dancing clarinet" is not necessarily wrong, but you either like it or you don't. And it is an illusion to imitate the "reality" in your living room. There is not one reality. And then I leave aside the fact that the acoustics of your living room are usually completely different from those of the room in which the musicians played. You can't turn off the acoustics of your living room. By the way, for me the moving through the stereo field of the "dancing clarinet" is a bit overdone, I don't like it either.

@kenwebster5053:  Well, your axium was pretty common place among HiFi enthusiasts back in the 60s.
I haven't heard it in a very long time now though.

I think it's more like faithfully reproduce the recording, but then highlight the aspects of the music, you happen to like. So, it may come down to music appreciation, which means being emotionally transported by the tonal qualities of the instruments or expression of a vocalist.

I am by the way not an audiophile, I have managed and maintained an auditorium sound system for a few decades, eventually got it to the point that my audiophile friend was blown with it, saying WOW actual true sound reinforcement. Well in reality I had a pretty near non-existent budget, but could buy replacement gear when something actually failed in a way I could not repair. So I only concentrated on clarity & tonal EQ balanced in favour of the audience. The on stage sound wasn't great though due offsetting to boundary effects in favour of the audience EQ. It was just a very poor stage non-design. So I do believe you can do quite a lot without spending much if toy target the main problems. However, the trick is correctly identifying what the main problems are. This is understanding is confirmed by the theory of errors in data analysis. The only way an system can be improved is by fixing the largest errors at their source. Any other improvement is completely swamped into the indictable category by the overwhelming magnitude of the largest problem.

Anyway, I like my HiFi at home, but believe me, it isn't a patch on my audiophile friends holiday home system. Listening to vocalists on that is truly an other worldly experience. I have seriously never heard a sound system so emotionally transporting.

@williamjueschke9960:  You’re right, the soloist should not be all over the place, more center.

@artysanmobile:  I have been a music producer for over 40 years and I’d like music fans to understand something fundamental, something maybe shocking. We producers are part of the performance we work so hard to present to a listener. We’re part of the band. We do that almost universally with the original performer’s blessings. They hire us to make the sound listeners hear. Virtually no one wants their recording to sound just like what is heard by any member of the audience at a live performance. We both insist that our result is better than that. I really don’t know where the word ‘faithful’ came to be associated with music recording. It is the goal of no one.

@carlosalvarez7445 replies to @artysanmobile: Maybe for low quality pop music, where talent is not enough to please the audience, the performers would eagerly request that mastering and mixing help to cover the gaps where emotion and skill fell short. But in classical music I seriously doubt any director would be half happy if posproduction messed up with an otherwise masterful performance. I suppose the exception would be in electronic music where performance, mastering and mixing very often do indeed fuse to expand an original idea, that is very much acceptable and may produce amazing results. But other than that, I don't buy it and when done it feels like cheap music the label pushed to get out quickly.

@Douglas_Blake_579 replies to @artysanmobile: Methinks you thinks too highly of yourself.
Your job is to capture the performance ... you are NOT part of the band nor would any competent musician want you thinking you are. You aren't playing music... you're not part of the performance.

@f8andbethere4 replies to @artysanmobile: The final sound of any recording is always down to the producer and mastering engineer. That's why some producers are more sought after than others.

@RudeRecording:  I record live events from smaller ensembles to 10+ piece jazz bands. I have recorded and broadcast symphony orchestras in my past. I have always endeavored to record the performance as accurately as possible. I prefer to use single point ambiance capture such as Blumlein, M/S, and sometimes even X/Y. I have never liked spaced pair such as shown for a soloist due to the exaggerated movement of that soloist. I would opine that the use of the spaced pair, if extreme panned could have caused the perceived overly wide image. Spaced pair is NOT the same as a dummy head or binaural microphone.
The audio engineer's thumb rule of both the equilateral triangle and the 5 times practical, 10 times ideal, distance rule will also apply. No listener listens to a an acoustic instrument a foot or less away from that instrument unless they are playing that instrument. If you put a mic or a pair of mics in that distance it will not be the sound that the audience hears unless it is properly mixed, amplitude, phase and pan, to the ambiance [audience perspective] microphone. Any of the close mics should be considered accent mics with the ambience [audience perspective] mic being dominate in the mix. I was taught when mixing those accent mics that pan amplitude and phase were matched, with phase reversed till the instrument dropped [ideally] out of the mix. After proper adjustment the phase would be returned to normal and should be in the proper stage perspective. I prefer to let the ambiance mic dictate the stage width and performer positioning.
Just MHO but I'm not a fan of ORTF/Decca Tree recordings and wouldn't use spaced pair for a soloist. I've used a dual capsule, single point microphone in either Blumlein or M/S for ambiance most of my recording career but recently started using a Soundfield [tetrahedron] microphone for ambience capture, it allows me more options in post for adjusting the room ambience.

@michaelb9664:  I find the dancing clarinet a lot less annoying than squashed dynamics and brick wall limiting. They are much bigger faults and yet they are deliberate.

@SamHocking:  Surely just a limitation of the Stereo recording and reproduction process? Record it using a binaural microphone (how humans actually hear a concert) and you'll not perceive the movement so much because binaural includes crosstalk, stereo omits it (unless artificially binauralised or sides reduced). This is where Spatial Audio can have advantages, especially on headphones.

@ronschauer839:  I subscribe to the Peter Walker quote: "the perfect amplifier is a straight wire with gain".
Whatever a recording is in its best available delivered form, is what it is.
Add nothing, take nothing away, just (hopefully) relax and enjoy the music.
If this makes me an audiophile, so be it. 😶
However, I neither claim to be one, nor aspire to be characterized as one.

99% of the time I listen to studio recordings of (relatively) modern music.
This, as opposed to recordings of "live" stage performances of any artist or genre.
So for me any perceived movements between the two channels are simply part of the final recording as it was intended to be, and I pay them no mind.

But yes indeed, a clarinet player leaping wildly from side to side on the stage in front of an orchestra would be quite a sight to behold.
Therefore, if the goal of the recording is to accurately reproduce the experience of being in the audience, such recording-induced movements are not a good thing.
Unless of course the clarinet player was in fact bouncing back and forth on a trampoline at the time... 🤔

@hanneskluytenaar6908:  A klarinet dancing all over the sound immage, is not my cup of thea. But i can live with it. More terrible is what happens a lot, is compressing all dynamics. That makes all music dull and uninteresting. I hope that this practice fades away.

Thanks for your thoughts.

@nicc5122:  Audiophile is wrong. Hi Fi, or HIGH FIDELITY is correct, take the definition of "fidelity" to be a true reproduction (intent) of what is being recorded, and "high" to be the best or closest to the best possible. 100% of nonsense, is still nonsense even if you pay £1000 for it, or can only afford 75% of nonsense, or it was quite cheap or budget.

Recently I saw an auction on a site with a 5 way bound set of IEC mains leads, apparently specialist for providing power to a related set of "HiFi" system components. Clearly no concept of the speed of light (electricity), and they weren't even silver, never mind "oxygen free copper"! Sorry, a bit off topic for this, but is the point an audiophile isn't really interested in it being a reproduction of a natural experience.

@taidee:  This is all fascinating, but I think you approach it from creator's point of view. The phrase "as the artist intended" even if most times it's the mastering engineer, is about the sound reproduced as close to the original material as possible even if that material itself is not made in a manner it should have been. In this case, You are correct and the Audiophiles are correct, you want it done the way classical music should be, audiophiles want to hear it as close to how it was mastered as possible, drunk clarinet or not 🤣

@dogratco:  I heard the effect in the recording before it was explained, but with the expectation there was a technical problem with the recording, my assumption was a microphone was out of phase with other mics. Back to binaural!

@StephenDriver-jk7hi:  Axioms: an adjacent issue is that of live v studio recordings, and the role of editing. Many (most?) classical performers feel that the presence of an audience brings a quality of communication that is absent in the studio. Herbert von Karajan, however, held that studio recording and editing allows a level of 'technical' perfection that he considered desirable. By 'technical', he mostly meant eliminating mistakes, poor intonation etc, i.e. musical technique - but he also meant correcting poor balance, eliminating extraneous noise etc, i.e. recording technique. Glenn Gould went further, retiring from live performance altogether to concentrate on studio recording; he thought that editing was fine. What's my point? Probably that even great musicians disagree on what a recording 'should' achieve. The corollary is perhaps that a true audiophile might prize a perfect recording of a mediocre performance over a poor recording of a superb performance? ('Discuss' - while I retreat behind the sofa for my own safety!)

@jamescarter3196 replies to @StephenDriver-jk7hi: I think it's worth mentioning that Gould also really got into singing along with his piano no matter how bad it sounded, and I don't know if or when he did that often during in-person performances, but it strikes me as one of those 'production-itis' things, where somebody spends so much time in the studio that they forget there's an 'audience' which they're depending on. Live audiences would be likely to leave if they had to hear a bunch of "LA LA LA LA" sung badly along with brilliant piano performances.

@northsurrey:  An instrument is a point source of audio so it's tempting to say it should be miked up with a single mic. If the instrument is miked with a close stereo pair and the orchestra with a Decca tree or similar, then two sound stages are produced - this is clearly wrong and produces the wandering effect in the Weber recording. This assumes the instrument mics are panned hard left and right. The instrument should be spot miked with a mono mic or narrow stereo mics which should be panned to match the performer's position on the stage for someone sitting a few metres behind the conductor. The soloist's mic and the main tree should be time aligned to minimise phase and image errors. Hall mics could also be used to pick up some of the ambiance of the hall but only if it has a good acoustic. It is nonsense to mic up a clarinet with a wide stereo pair as in the Weber and I see no logic in it. If spaciousness is needed then this should be captured by the orchestra and hall mics.

I don't know for sure but I suspect the two mics used on the Proms soloist were probably a main and backup as it was live on the radio. But it's possible they were being used as a narrow stereo pair which could be collapsed to mono in the event of a failure. The BBC balances at the proms are excellent and a showcase of how it should be done.

So IMHO an orchestral recording should be an accurate representation of the performance for someone sitting in a central position in the hall, ie the best seat in the house...isn't that what's wanted by music lovers, audiophiles and, dare I say, people like me who are both?

@darryldouglas6004:  Was the intent of this recording to reproduce the music hall or are we assuming this because that is usually the case? 😃

@brianstarr:  Give the buyer options, let them choose. Make two versions, why not? Maybe 3? We are all individuals. What we do in our homes is protected by the constitution. 😂

@billmilosz:  The SOUND of that "bad" clip is OK- not distorted or noisy. Musically, it is also OK. What's wrong is the recording technique, or more properly, the mic technique. I don't know why a recording engineer would place a stereo pair that close to the soloist and have them hard panned left and right so that the motion of the soloist would be exaggerated in the stereo image. A single mic would have been ideal in terms of a proper stereo perspective. There's many other mics more broadly spaced around the orchestra that you will get plenty of depth and "hall sound" from those in the mix (but they must be set up properly, too!)

There are many "audiophiles" that rarely go to live acoustic orchestral performances and who would never realize that this sonic perspective is all goofed up.

In a big hall - a typical symphony settings - when sitting anywhere in the audience you're not going to really hear the sound of the soloist moving around if they emote during their performance. The overall size of the space and your distance relationship to the soloist and to the walls will not let you really hear "motion" in the sound. In an opera as the performers run to and fro, you'll hear directional cues from that.

Now, in a smaller venue, with maybe a string quartet or a jazz ensemble, you might hear some motion- but not "ping pong" effects.

In the case of a pop or rock performance, it's all electronic anyway, you'll hear whatever the producer / sound mixer wants you to hear.

@stuartneil8682:  In my headphones, I hear a distant orchestra and a giant clarinet. Lat year I sat 5m away from the conductor in a small hall, listening to performances of music by the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, one of the pieces was Copland’s Clarinet Concerto . I could hear a great deal of detail from the clarinet playing but, in your examples, as most music, the close placement of the microphone captures too much detail. This places the listeners virtual ear inches from the instrument. I used to play and still own a clarinet, so I know what it sounds like at zero distance, and it is not the same as at 5 m away, or even more so at 15m back in a hall. The proximity effect in recording gets worse with percussive sounds such as guitar strings being plucked, piano,etc..

@powermod6772 replies to @stuartneil8682: I made the opposite experience. I often have the feeling that being in a live concert is not so engaging, because the instruments are so far away. Actually, I can enjoy the music much more when I listen to the recording at home using headphones. Being closer to the instruments and literally hearing the strings of the beautiful instruments swinging is much more enjoyable for me.

@mantaproject:  I had no idea this would be so sensitive to you.
You should consult a therapist for this. (just kidding)
I understand your point of view, but I listen little to classical music and more to synthesizer music where some sounds revolve around the head and can go in different directions.
When I listen to a piece of classical music that also features this, I don't think it's a bad approximation of a live performance.
The conclusion is then probably that an audiophile is looking for the best possible live interpretation.
So.. I'm not an audiophile!
So.. I'm NOT wrong!
😉

@soundssimple1:  Interesting. I recommend that you discuss the following. Not all concert goers get your 'seat' , 3rd row middle...so where are they ? far left ?, far right ? in the gods ?. Circle P or Y ? Why do producers not produce work replicating your seating position ( as you heard it ! ) Technology today could do this . Pick your concert, pick you seating position , hit play on the streaming device ( or custom made vinyl ? ) and enjoy .Discuss.

@chocomalk:  A live recording in my mind should be more of a documentary than an attempt at entertainment.

@jamescarter3196 replies to @chocomalk: That's just a meaningless thing to say which ignores 'recording technology' and 'the audience' as factors. You're among people who actually do this stuff and you're trying to make a differentiation that isn't really an 'either/or' thing. Music is entertainment. If you don't make the recording sound good, it won't be entertaining, and people who want to hear live albums are looking to be entertained, not 'informed'. Documentaries are about information. These things can mix but not all the time.

@chocomalk replies to @chocomalk: A documentary is about capturing an event as it happens without alteration. Same thing applies to a live recording, it's not an engineers job to add anything to another artists work. And it's up to the entertainer to entertain. @@jamescarter3196

@Beatsbasteln:  i don't really care if any of these things are problems :D but what i do know is that the more you play the so-called "problem clip" the more i want to actually stand in this forest and listen to this tune in person

@Catandbeats:  It seems like some sort of widener was used vs an autopanner on just the flute mic. You can also hear the string section pop inside out randomly. After checking the album as well, you can hear this on every single track... It seems like a "thought out" creative decision vs a random mistake.

@howardskeivys4184:  I recently watched a YouTube review of a pair of speakers. The reviewer was using a recording of a live performance of a Jaz quartet. I’d actually attended that gig, stood about 5 rows from the front. Anyways, the reviewer remarked that he could hear the vocalist swaying. I can con confirm that at that gig, she did sway, but I couldn’t hear it, because she was singing into a solo Mike which she was holding. So, when she moved, the Mike moved with her. Plus, she was singing into a Mike which transmitted her voice over multiple static speakers around that Jaz lounge, so anyone present would have heard in the most part her voice reproduced via those static speakers.

Hifi, or high fidelity represents the degree of exactness to which something is copied. If the production crew or audio technicians artificially introduce left to right channel time differences to mimic swaying, are they not deviating from the original? Very much like your instrumentalist dancing around th stage. If an audiophiles goal is high fidelity, does this not go against the grain. All that having been said, how many recordings do audiophiles have of performances they actually witnessed? So that’s probably why they’re not overly concerned with the recording!

@CrashSomeMore:  I've been enlightened, entertained and trolled simultaneously.

@kevinmccahill7522:  I think I’m going to agree with you on the ‘wrong’ thing. Studio technique is a fundamental part of recorded rock music but classical should be reproduced faithfully. I tried to close Mike an orchestra once and the conductor absolutely hated it. I ended up backing up and using just three mics And he liked it a little bit better lol

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Friday September 8, 2023

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David Mellor

David Mellor

David Mellor is CEO and Course Director of Audio Masterclass. David has designed courses in audio education and training since 1986 and is the publisher and principal writer of Adventures In Audio.

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