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Thread: Challenge Classics

  1. #131
    Member Sponsor [WBF Founding Member] Mike Lavigne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Audiocrack View Post
    Now and then I force myself to think about the following - somewhat strange - question: if I would be exiled to a desert island and I am (only) allowed to listen to say 5 or 10 composers for the rest of my life, which composers would I choose? An impossible question of course, inter alia because one’s taste varies over the years, but on my list always figure two French composers: Debussy and Ravel. And although the former has undoubtedly been more important for the evolution of (modern) music Ravel appeals even more to my heart with his incredible beautiful and moving melodies.

    Bert van der Wolf recorded recently of each of these composers one piece of famous music: La Mer (Debussy) and Ma Mere L’Oye (Ravel). Both pieces are (very) well played and beautifully recorded. Some claim it is even a spectacular recording.

    And if you do not want to believe me I refer to the following review: http://hraudio.net/showmusic.php?title=12597#reviews

    Listen for example to the last part of Ravel’s Ma Mere L’Oye: Apotheose. So beautiful and moving that it goes straight to your heart.
    love Ravel and Debussy. I have maybe 15 Lp's of 'Images' and those all have other pieces with them. play them often. i'm always playing those composers on digital too. not sure why. maybe my French Canadian grandfather?

    looks like it's native dxd and......Spirit of Turtle has it in dxd......:-)

    trying to download now. I have not done any for awhile, so have to re-learn.

    thanks and Merry Christmas!
    Last edited by Mike Lavigne; 12-25-2017 at 09:04 AM.
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  2. #132
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Lavigne View Post
    love Ravel and Debussy. I have maybe 15 Lp's of 'Images' and those all have other pieces with them. play them often. i'm always playing those composers on digital too. not sure why. maybe my French Canadian grandfather?

    looks like it's native dxd and......Spirit of Turtle has it in dxd......:-)

    trying to download now. I have not done any for awhile, so have to re-learn.

    thanks and Merry Christmas!
    I am sure you will enjoy it Mike (yes it is an original dxd recording and available in dxd and dsd 256 files) and Merry Christmas to you, Lloyd and all our members as well.

  3. #133
    Member Sponsor [WBF Founding Member] Mike Lavigne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Audiocrack View Post
    I am sure you will enjoy it Mike (yes it is an original dxd recording and available in dxd and dsd 256 files) and Merry Christmas to you, Lloyd and all our members as well.
    finally did get it downloaded today, Spirit of Turtle was having issues with their downloads and Bert was nice enough to send me a link which worked great.

    https://www.spiritofturtle.com/shop/...v=7516fd43adaa

    listening now. I really enjoy it. the dxd source file has excellent sound on the MSB as I expected, and very emotionally involving too as you mentioned. thank you for the rec. this will be a frequent choice as I love the music and this is a great alternative to my vinyl.

    the ambience and sense of space and flow is outstanding and really serves this music well.
    Wave Kin. NVS tt, AS-2000 ord. (2) Durand Telos (1-Sapphire) arms, CA Gold Stat, Ort Anna carts, -2- Studer A-820 RTR (1/4" + 1/2").*MSB Select II dac w/33 Femto clock + mono powerbases, SGM serv + (2x) 30 tb NAS. *darT NHB-18NS w/2 phonos, King-Cello. *dart 458 mono blocks. EA MM7. *Equi=tech 10WQ, (10) Abso Fid PC & (2) Evo Acou PC. *Evo Acou 12' TRSC and 8m + 1.25m 'zeel' ic's, *Tripoint Troy Sig + Elite, Entreq Sil Tel + Pos, *Herzan TS-140 & TS-150, Wave Kin. A10 U8's + 2NS, Adona GTX.

  4. #134
    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Lavigne View Post
    finally did get it downloaded today, Spirit of Turtle was having issues with their downloads and Bert was nice enough to send me a link which worked great.

    https://www.spiritofturtle.com/shop/...v=7516fd43adaa

    listening now. I really enjoy it. the dxd source file has excellent sound on the MSB as I expected, and very emotionally involving too as you mentioned. thank you for the rec. this will be a frequent choice as I love the music and this is a great alternative to my vinyl.

    the ambience and sense of space and flow is outstanding and really serves this music well.
    Glad that you like/love the music of Debussy and Ravel, two of my favourite classical composers.

    Are you (only) listening to the dxd versions of Bert’s recordings? I always buy his recordings in dxd as well as in dsd 256. Still not sure which version I prefer in my set up with the Tidal Camira dac. Do you prefer the dxd version to the dsd 256 version in your set up with the MSB select dac?

    Agree with you that the beautiful recording suits this ‘impressionistic’ music well. That said, in my view some of Bert’s (previous) orchestral recordings sound even better than this Debussy/Ravel recording. Pretty sure this - (of course personal) - preference is related to the (acoustics of the) music hall in which the various pieces were recorded.

  5. #135
    Member Sponsor [WBF Founding Member] Mike Lavigne's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Audiocrack View Post
    Glad that you like/love the music of Debussy and Ravel, two of my favourite classical composers.

    Are you (only) listening to the dxd versions of Bert’s recordings? I always buy his recordings in dxd as well as in dsd 256. Still not sure which version I prefer in my set up with the Tidal Camira dac. Do you prefer the dxd version to the dsd 256 version in your set up with the MSB select dac?
    I have at least 20 of Bert's dxd recordings in both dxd and dsd 256. I slightly prefer the dxd versions. I have another 40 'native' dsd 256 recordings (of various sources) which I also have a few dxd versions of. when it's native dsd 256 I prefer that. with the MSB it does not matter the recording, almost 100% of the time I prefer the native format the recording is in. the hybrid dac of the MSB optimizes both pcm and dsd. that said, at this level they are all good and enjoyable.....we are talking quite small differences in decay, textures, overtones, space and focus.

    Agree with you that the beautiful recording suits this ‘impressionistic’ music well. That said, in my view some of Bert’s (previous) orchestral recordings sound even better than this Debussy/Ravel recording. Pretty sure this - (of course personal) - preference is related to the (acoustics of the) music hall in which the various pieces were recorded.
    you know those halls personally and I'd guess can 'hear' what your mind's eye sees. that has to be fun. I can only guess a little from what I hear.
    Wave Kin. NVS tt, AS-2000 ord. (2) Durand Telos (1-Sapphire) arms, CA Gold Stat, Ort Anna carts, -2- Studer A-820 RTR (1/4" + 1/2").*MSB Select II dac w/33 Femto clock + mono powerbases, SGM serv + (2x) 30 tb NAS. *darT NHB-18NS w/2 phonos, King-Cello. *dart 458 mono blocks. EA MM7. *Equi=tech 10WQ, (10) Abso Fid PC & (2) Evo Acou PC. *Evo Acou 12' TRSC and 8m + 1.25m 'zeel' ic's, *Tripoint Troy Sig + Elite, Entreq Sil Tel + Pos, *Herzan TS-140 & TS-150, Wave Kin. A10 U8's + 2NS, Adona GTX.

  6. #136
    The last/fourth part of Bert van der Wolf’s/Northstar Prokofiev recording cycle has become available. I was allowed to join one of the recording sessions; a great experience. See the pictures I posted earlier in this thread.

    To me the first three Prokofiev files (in dsd 256 and dxd) belong - soundswise - to the very best orchestral recordings available today. And due to Bert’s great/beautiful recordings I have started to admire Prokofiev as a composer more than ever before: this is some really fantastic music as well.

    Have not heard this last installment yet but I have no doubts whatsoever it will sound great again. And you do not have to take my word for it. I refer to the following link, in particular to the last paragraph of the review (which states inter alia: “the sound quality is beyond reproach”):

    https://www.hraudio.net/showmusic.ph...2847&showall=0
    Last edited by Audiocrack; 03-07-2018 at 10:03 PM.

  7. #137
    Here is another review of a recent CC/Bert van der Wolf recording with music composed by Korngold and Bernstein:

    https://www.hraudio.net/showmusic.php?title=12808

  8. #138
    VIP/Donor [VIP/Donor] astrotoy's Avatar
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    If you want to try some of the Challenge Classics SACD's, Berkshire Record outlet has around 15 of them for sale for $7.99 per disc. Their inventory goes up and down, but I have purchased 22 (many multidisc) Challenge Classics SACD albums from them over the years. They also have about 20 Channel Classics albums currently among the 300+ SACD's in their inventory. All classical. I rip them to mch with my Sony Playstation 3. I listened to the very fine Challenge Classics albums of the Handel Op.3 and Op.6 Concerti Grossi last night. They are ripped to DSD64 from the SACD, all mch. You can also rip to stereo if you want. I am using Roon/HQP (currently using the closed form filter for mch) to upconvert to DSD256 which my NADAC mch plays very well. You need a pretty powerful computer to upconvert to DSD256 in mch.

    https://broinc.com/search.php?search_mode=advanced

    Put "SACD" in the Keyword, then Search for Challenge Classics in the Record/Company Label field. I just did a search and there are 17 SACD's. If you want to look just for Challenge Classics, don't put in the Keyword and you will get 128 titles, including CD's. If you want to just look for all the SACD's, then just put SACD in the keyword and you will get all 300+ SACD's in their inventory. The inventory changes pretty often, so if you see something you like, you should grab it.

    Larry
    Last edited by astrotoy; 03-13-2018 at 10:59 AM.
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  9. #139
    Member Addicted to Best! NorthStar's Avatar
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    Awesome Larry; $7.99 is excellent.
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  10. #140
    Quote Originally Posted by astrotoy View Post
    If you want to try some of the Challenge Classics SACD's, Berkshire Record outlet has around 15 of them for sale for $7.99 per disc. Their inventory goes up and down, but I have purchased 22 (many multidisc) Challenge Classics SACD albums from them over the years. They also have about 20 Channel Classics albums currently among the 300+ SACD's in their inventory. All classical. I rip them to mch with my Sony Playstation 3. I listened to the very fine Challenge Classics albums of the Handel Op.3 and Op.6 Concerti Grossi last night. They are ripped to DSD64 from the SACD, all mch. You can also rip to stereo if you want. I am using Roon/HQP (currently using the closed form filter for mch) to upconvert to DSD256 which my NADAC mch plays very well. You need a pretty powerful computer to upconvert to DSD256 in mch.

    https://broinc.com/search.php?search_mode=advanced

    Put "SACD" in the Keyword, then Search for Challenge Classics in the Record/Company Label field. I just did a search and there are 17 SACD's. If you want to look just for Challenge Classics, don't put in the Keyword and you will get 128 titles, including CD's. If you want to just look for all the SACD's, then just put SACD in the keyword and you will get all 300+ SACD's in their inventory. The inventory changes pretty often, so if you see something you like, you should grab it.

    Larry
    Please keep in mind that Challenge Classics is a label that brings out recordings that are being produced and engineered by different persons/recording engineers. So not all CC sacd’s were/are recorded by Northstar / Bert van der Wolf. My enthusiasm for the various CC files (in dxd and dsd 256) that I shared with all of you in this CC thread has (only) been inspired by the Northstar/Bert van der Wolf productions. The latter can only be downloaded from www.spiritofturtle.com in the original recording format (dxd) as well as in dsd 128 and dsd 256. Native dsd has only dsd 64 files available.
    Last edited by Audiocrack; 03-13-2018 at 10:33 PM.

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