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  1. #1
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    Recordings to test your speakers

    My Systems: http://www.audioshark.org/showthread...481#post158481

    "We can hear everything we measure, but we can't measure everything we hear. Let your ears be your guide."

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  2. #2

    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    Of all my go to tracks, I would rate Tracy Chapman, Mountain O' Things ... there are many but this gives you time from start to finish to get your shit right.

  3. #3
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    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike View Post
    I never put much faith in much of what What Hi-Fi says.

    To suggest that amongst the "best-produced recordings" there should be several from the 1960s suggests that recording techniques have not improved over the last 55 years or they've got worse.

    Even re-titled to "best performances ever recorded" I'd argue with most of the ones on their list. Nevertheless, I'll give the ones I don't know a whirl tonight.
    Sources - NAD M50.2 (streamer, CD player, CD ripper, hard drive music store)
    Amplification - NAD M33, NAD M12, Consonance Cyber 845 monoblocs
    Speakers - Avantgarde Duo XD, Avantgarde Duo (2006) - both aesthetically modified, Martin Logan Expression 13A (now sold)

  4. #4
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    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    Quote Originally Posted by Hear Here View Post
    I never put much faith in much of what What Hi-Fi says.

    To suggest that amongst the "best-produced recordings" there should be several from the 1960s suggests that recording techniques have not improved over the last 55 years or they've got worse.
    they have not improved and likely got worse if we take the whole picture. great recordings can still be made. but, of course, the performers are a limitation.

    in what ways have recording techniques improved since the 60's?

    if i were listing the best recordings (performance + purity + media quality) from my 20k-25k or so titles, most of the top of my list would be 50's or 60's recordings.....a few 70's.

    the reason mostly is (besides the epic artistic peak of the earlier era) that relatively large budgets and care was given to the recording process compared to more recent decades. multi-track is not generally our friend when we consider the connection to the music.....although there are great multi-track recordings.

    just my 2 cents, YMMV, i suppose this viewpoint is connected to one's musical tastes and preferences.

    and btw; i don't care for that What's HiFi list myself as anything definitive. a few there i do hold in high regard.

  5. #5
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    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    What a POS list. they don't even have the best sounding J Z album on the list, let alone the best sounding Fleetwood Mac album

    give this a spin on your system. if you don't know the album, you don't deserve to hear it

    Source: Technics SP10mk3 - Thales Simplicity II, TW Raven AC-3 - Graham Phantom, SME 3012-R, Exclusive P3,,Linn LP12 - Naim ARO
    Cartridges: Lyra Atlas Lambda SL, Lyra Etna SL, Lyra Delos, Dynavector XV-1s,Technics EPC100mk4, Ortofon A90, GM Royal, GM Classic, Denon ESC'd 103R, DL-S1, Audio Technica AT25, OC9II, Linn ESC'd Troika
    Phono Stage: Accuphase C-37,TW Acustik phono
    EQ: ​DEQX HDP-4
    Preamp: D'Agostino HD, conrad johnson GAT,
    Amps: conrad johnson teflon premier 8a's, D'Agostino Momentum S250
    Speakers: Wilson Maxx3

  6. #6
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    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    Quote Originally Posted by XV-1 View Post
    What a POS list. they don't even have the best sounding J Z album on the list, let alone the best sounding Fleetwood Mac album

    give this a spin on your system. if you don't know the album, you don't deserve to hear it

    With no indication of the artist or album title. how do we "give it a spin"? A hint please.
    Sources - NAD M50.2 (streamer, CD player, CD ripper, hard drive music store)
    Amplification - NAD M33, NAD M12, Consonance Cyber 845 monoblocs
    Speakers - Avantgarde Duo XD, Avantgarde Duo (2006) - both aesthetically modified, Martin Logan Expression 13A (now sold)

  7. #7
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    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    I’ll help. Massive Attack - Heligoland. Outstanding record!
    Morgan

    SPEAKERS KEF Blade 2 w/IsoAcoustics Gaia II | SUBWOOFERS Four DIY Speaker Hardware 12" passive subs driven by Dayton SA1000 amp | AMPLIFICATION Pass Labs X350.8, Cary SLP-05 w/Ultimate Upgrade | DIGITAL Marantz SA-10, Sonore opticalModule and opticalRendu, NUC8i7BEH Roon Core | VINYL EAT C-Sharp, Hana SL, EAT E-Glo S w/LPS, Bob's Devices Sky 20 SUT | POWER AudioQuest Niagara 5000, two dedicated circuits | WIRES AudioQuest William Tell, Earth, Leopard, Tornado | RESONANCE/ISOLATION Nordost Sort Kones, various Herbie's Audio Lab

  8. #8

    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    Why do speakers need to be "tested" by audiophiles so much? The testing part should take place at the dealer/store and then the speakers are to be "enjoyed" with music that stirs the soul, not make sounds that impress.
    Serge

  9. #9
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    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    Quote Originally Posted by TheOctopus View Post
    Why do speakers need to be "tested" by audiophiles so much? The testing part should take place at the dealer/store and then the speakers are to be "enjoyed" with music that stirs the soul, not make sounds that impress.
    The sound at the dealers will have been achieved by the dealer setting them up carefully in his demo room with the help of test recordings or recordings he knows very well.

    When many buyers take the plunge, empty their piggy-banks and take the speakers home, they have to do what the dealer did to get the best from his new toys within the peculiarities of his own listening room.

    Some people think that it's now so easy - just bung a bit of DSP at the speakers and that's it - job done. Quite wrong - 2 mistakes:

    1. He bought on the strength of how these speakers sounded in the showroom - there may be a very different sound in his home - he should have arranged a home demo

    2. DSP is not the first step to get the speakers singing, it's the last resort. If he need to do this, he's probably bought the wrong speakers for his room, or hasn't bothered to set them up properly, or he's not sensibly furnished his room, or (and I'm not promoting this unless it's a solely listening room) he hasn't considered room treatment. All these should be exhaustively done before resorting to DSP.

    Just my thoughts after having bought costly electrostatic speakers that reviewed well and sounded great at the showroom, only to find my 17 year old existing speakers still sounded appreciably better than the brand new panels - even after careful setting up with the help of test discs and with DSP!
    Sources - NAD M50.2 (streamer, CD player, CD ripper, hard drive music store)
    Amplification - NAD M33, NAD M12, Consonance Cyber 845 monoblocs
    Speakers - Avantgarde Duo XD, Avantgarde Duo (2006) - both aesthetically modified, Martin Logan Expression 13A (now sold)

  10. #10

    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    I can definitely understand the need for recordings/test tracks to set up and optimize the speakers at home, once the process of a mechanical break in and a bit of capacitor/crossover forming is complete and the speakers open up and are ready to be setup properly. But how many times do you see posts like "what is your favorite test recording", "what are your favorite show your system off recordings"?

    I get that it is a hobby and one wants to "show off" and justify the purchase but what a strange hobby to be in if not for the love of music itself? Sure, I listened to many "suggested" audiophile grade recordings over the decades, it is fun for the duration of the song... maybe.... In the end, it is all about the music. One either loves the music and has a life long bond with it or the shiny boxes eventually get old and irrelevant if the passion for music is not strong.

    Somewhere along the long road of this hobby, I realized that I really do love music but I need to stop trying to analyze it and use it as a "tool" for evaluating my shiny boxes unless I want to get bored and burned out with the hobby".

    My advice would always be to listen to more favorite music and less "test tracks"
    Serge

  11. #11

    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    I test my speakers in a fairly unique way. The more songs and albums that sound really good, the better my speakers are. It kind of sounds dumb but I have heard some systems where a small percentage of albums sound good. Many of these systems I have heard in high end shops. When I used to go to evaluate speakers I used to bring one really good sounding source and one bad source, both should be listenable.

  12. #12
    Senior Member
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    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    I play the music I enjoy and don't get into music I just can't stand regardless how fantastic it might be recorded. If I don't enjoy it, well it doesn't get used. Right or wrong, its the way it is.
    PassXa-30.5, W4S STP, Kef 201/2, KEF 140, Vapor Breeze, Lumin, Bryston CD, BHA-1, HD650, HD800s, Dan Clark 1.1, OPPO 203, 105.

  13. #13

    Re: Recordings to test your speakers

    I believe you are saying the same thing I am, just in a more understandable way. Many years ago I would play music I really didn't care for but the quality of the recording would be outstanding. The other night I was jamming to 'Zep 1, Dazed and Confused, etc. I had that s#%! cranked and didn't care about any of the audiophile things we listen for. Jimmy Page was jamming, John Bonham was jamming (we be jammin'....lol) and I didn't give a crap about anything. Was I having fun? You bet your @$$ I was.

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Recordings to test your speakers

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