How to be an audiophile on the cheap

Apr 3, 2010
16,021
1
0
Seattle, WA
#2
"You will need a good album to test your setup. How do you pick which recording to start with? Michael Fremer weighs in:

A good recording of acoustic music is the best way to judge a system's quality, especially if you attend live music performances. That way, you have a known reference. But ultimately it all depends upon your musical tastes. If you like rock mostly, you can't go wrong using "Nirvana Unplugged" or "Alice in Chains Unplugged." Both are superbly recorded and feature both acoustic and electric instruments. I promise you the double vinyl issue of Alice in Chains sounds so much better than the CD version, it's ridiculous!
"

True?
 

Gregadd

WBF Founding Member
Apr 20, 2010
6,616
38
48
Metro DC
#3
AMIR quotes Fremer ??????
:confused:
 

Kal Rubinson

Well-Known Member
May 5, 2010
1,552
63
48
NYC/CT
www.stereophile.com
#4
"You will need a good album to test your setup. How do you pick which recording to start with? Michael Fremer weighs in:

A good recording of acoustic music is the best way to judge a system's quality, especially if you attend live music performances. That way, you have a known reference. But ultimately it all depends upon your musical tastes. If you like rock mostly, you can't go wrong using "Nirvana Unplugged" or "Alice in Chains Unplugged." Both are superbly recorded and feature both acoustic and electric instruments. I promise you the double vinyl issue of Alice in Chains sounds so much better than the CD version, it's ridiculous!
"

True?
In principle and only if you can tolerate the music.
 
Jul 27, 2015
256
0
0
#5
"You will need a good album to test your setup. How do you pick which recording to start with? Michael Fremer weighs in:

A good recording of acoustic music is the best way to judge a system's quality, especially if you attend live music performances. That way, you have a known reference. But ultimately it all depends upon your musical tastes. If you like rock mostly, you can't go wrong using "Nirvana Unplugged" or "Alice in Chains Unplugged." Both are superbly recorded and feature both acoustic and electric instruments. I promise you the double vinyl issue of Alice in Chains sounds so much better than the CD version, it's ridiculous!
"

True?
Yes, but listen to what ever you would listen to the most. If you only listen to electronic music i dont see why you need to demo with anything else.
 

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
10,285
739
113
London
#6
With acoustic music there is more of a right and wrong to tone than with miked music. Also orchestral pieces have 50 instruments, so multiple frequencies going to the same driver, across drivers, and with varying voltages and large voltage jumps. Much more challenging than reproducing 4 instruments
 
Jul 25, 2012
2,556
3
38
NY
#7
With acoustic music there is more of a right and wrong to tone than with miked music. Also orchestral pieces have 50 instruments, so multiple frequencies going to the same driver, across drivers, and with varying voltages and large voltage jumps. Much more challenging than reproducing 4 instruments
The same goes demos using an instrumental duo or trio playing with a single female vocalist--what a waste of listening time.
 

Johnny Vinyl

Member Sponsor & WBF Founding Member
May 16, 2010
8,572
7
38
Calgary, AB
#8
"You will need a good album to test your setup. How do you pick which recording to start with? Michael Fremer weighs in:

A good recording of acoustic music is the best way to judge a system's quality, especially if you attend live music performances. That way, you have a known reference. But ultimately it all depends upon your musical tastes. If you like rock mostly, you can't go wrong using "Nirvana Unplugged" or "Alice in Chains Unplugged." Both are superbly recorded and feature both acoustic and electric instruments. I promise you the double vinyl issue of Alice in Chains sounds so much better than the CD version, it's ridiculous!
"

True?
Yes! I'm traditionally not a big fan of either band, but the Unplugged albums are truly outstanding.
 

ddk

Industry Expert
May 19, 2013
3,746
253
83
Utah
#9

bonzo75

Member Sponsor
Feb 26, 2014
10,285
739
113
London
#10
You can say that about a lot of things Mike listens to, not to mention the volume :D!
Who Mike, lavigne? What is the reference to volume?
 

ddk

Industry Expert
May 19, 2013
3,746
253
83
Utah
#11

Mike Lavigne

Member Sponsor & WBF Founding Member
Apr 25, 2010
7,373
359
83
#12
No! Fremer.
david
I don't listen to that same loud angry music that Mikey does.:eek:

OTOH I like Nirvana Unplugged just fine.

I'm a 65db-80db listening level person depending on the mood, more toward the lower part. mostly acoustic since it's mostly classical and jazz.
 
Apr 3, 2010
16,021
1
0
Seattle, WA
#13
Yes! I'm traditionally not a big fan of either band, but the Unplugged albums are truly outstanding.
Good to know as I had already ordered the two CDs referenced when I read the article :). I listened to the Youtube versions and they sounded a lot more mellow than I expected. What got me over the hurdle was that both CDs were priced around $5 on Amazon!

BTW, whatever happened to unplugged series? Did it get unplugged the same time MTV went after Rap and youth programming???
 
Apr 3, 2010
16,021
1
0
Seattle, WA
#14
I'm a 65db-80db listening level person depending on the mood, more toward the lower part. mostly acoustic since it's mostly classical and jazz.
I am way tilted to the higher side for music that demands it. :) I like to feel the bass and that doesn't happen for me at low volumes. Most of my listening is Jazz these days and it too demands high volumes for that effect.

Of course it all could be justification for growing deaf in my older age. :)
 

Mike Lavigne

Member Sponsor & WBF Founding Member
Apr 25, 2010
7,373
359
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#15
Good to know as I had already ordered the two CDs referenced when I read the article :). I listened to the Youtube versions and they sounded a lot more mellow than I expected. What got me over the hurdle was that both CDs were priced around $5 on Amazon!

BTW, whatever happened to unplugged series? Did it get unplugged the same time MTV went after Rap and youth programming???
I recommend the 'Best of Unplugged' CD's as very very good acoustic pop music. there are some true gems on those CD's.
 
Apr 3, 2010
16,021
1
0
Seattle, WA
#16
The same goes demos using an instrumental duo or trio playing with a single female vocalist--what a waste of listening time.
??? Last time I was listening to Nina Simone. Much of her material is simple like that, with Piano, some of kind of drums softly playing and her voice. Was I wrong to admire that music?
 

Mike Lavigne

Member Sponsor & WBF Founding Member
Apr 25, 2010
7,373
359
83
#17
I am way tilted to the higher side for music that demands it. :) I like to feel the bass and that doesn't happen for me at low volumes. Most of my listening is Jazz these days and it too demands high volumes for that effect.

Of course it all could be justification for growing deaf in my older age. :)
my perspective on volume and bass involvement is that I'm much into a system that gets the bass nuance at modest volumes. and system noise floor and the first watt magic are pieces of that puzzle. and lots of what I listen to has quite wide swings in volume levels. it might be mostly low 70db range but peaks get up there quite high.

OTOH with visitors I typically turn it up and the bass gets more physical. but a 2 hour session has a different vibe than a 6 hour one. 6 hours at 80db+ as an average gets assaultive. I listen easily 30+ hours a week, and that's attentive listening.

even in the 60's and 70's (my teens and 20's) I avoided high db listening as a rule......unless properly medicated. which for me was seldom.
 
Apr 3, 2010
16,021
1
0
Seattle, WA
#19
OTOH with visitors I typically turn it up and the bass gets more physical. but a 2 hour session has a different vibe than a 6 hour one. 6 hours at 80db+ as an average gets assaultive. I listen easily 30+ hours a week, and that's attentive listening.
Then we are doing the same thing. I turn up the volume for a few minutes at a time and then dial it down based on mood and what I am listening to for the rest of the period. Yesterday for example I must have listed to my system for 6 to 8 hours with no fatigue whatsoever. Weekly I am easily where you are at with respect to hours.
 

Mike Lavigne

Member Sponsor & WBF Founding Member
Apr 25, 2010
7,373
359
83
#20

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