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Author Topic: Beatles Box Set. Stereo? Mono? Both? Neither?  (Read 7382 times)
hadden
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« Reply #40 on: September 10, 2009, 11:34:45 PM »

It's here! First impression. It all looks really, really good. Like miniature albums. In that regard, even better than the originals in some cases. Let's face it, when you hold up the earlier CDs, they feel and look like junk. It's about time this music and its fans were treated with the respect that they both deserve. More reviews, or maybe just reports, to come.

Stereo or Mono? Do you listen through headphones at all? I'd be interested in how they sound that way.  bigrin

   Someone over at the stevehoffman forums reported the bass being heavy on Abbey Road. Generally positive impressions though.
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« Reply #41 on: September 10, 2009, 11:57:34 PM »

I got the stereo box. Oddly enough, with the 1987 CDs, the first four are mono. Stereo doesn't appear until Help. This is actually the first time the first four albums have been released in stereo on a CD. The plot thickens.
Anyway, I listened to AR first thing through the headphones. Marvelous! Of course, it was always in stereo. I'm now listening to Revolver, perhaps my favourite, and its terrific. I'm hearing none of the brittleness found on the earlier CD versions. The stereo separation in the first verse of Taxman is still a little strange. When the second guitar comes in, it takes off. She Said, She Said just rips the house down. The mean streak is back in The Beatles music! The harmonies in Good Day Sunshine are sublime. The guitars on And Your Bird Can Sing nearly tear your head off. Oh yeah, you need these. 
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hadden
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« Reply #42 on: September 11, 2009, 12:43:18 AM »

I got the stereo box. Oddly enough, with the 1987 CDs, the first four are mono. Stereo doesn't appear until Help. This is actually the first time the first four albums have been released in stereo on a CD. The plot thickens.
Anyway, I listened to AR first thing through the headphones. Marvelous! Of course, it was always in stereo. I'm now listening to Revolver, perhaps my favourite, and its terrific. I'm hearing none of the brittleness found on the earlier CD versions. The stereo separation in the first verse of Taxman is still a little strange. When the second guitar comes in, it takes off. She Said, She Said just rips the house down. The mean streak is back in The Beatles music! The harmonies in Good Day Sunshine are sublime. The guitars on And Your Bird Can Sing nearly tear your head off. Oh yeah, you need these. 


Most excellent!!!!!!
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« Reply #43 on: September 11, 2009, 01:08:02 AM »

Heard some cuts from the sets this morning on the radio. I had thought, yeah - another remaster - yawn, but the sound quality on these truly are amazing. The comment was that Ringo gets the largest boost, you can really hear the drumming, and the bass was full as well. Vocals are so clean, it made me think that maybe they had gone a little over the top on the digital re-processing. Would it be sacrilege to suggest that they tweaked pitch on some of them? Almost too sweet -

RE: Mono vs stereo - the comment was that the early albums were recorded primarily as mono, for release on AM radio. Stereo records were also higher cost in Britain. So the early stuff apparently sounds much better in mono, and the later albums truly benefit from the stereo. He also mentioned that some of the early stereo reissues were so badly done that they were essentially garbage.

I can't justify buying yet another set of Beatles recordings, but I know a couple of my CDs will get replaced with these new mixes. They are all definitely worth a listen -

Tad
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« Reply #44 on: September 11, 2009, 08:33:37 AM »

Interesting comments. When the "Love" album was released - the Beatles "mashup" - it was actually the first time that any of their recordings had been properly re-mastered, rather than just copied very badly to digital/stereo media. The universal comment was that Ringo's drumming was heard properly for the first time - and was truly excellent. I bought the album and can agree with that opinion wholeheartedly. If they've used the "Love" process on the new releases, then they will certainly be worth listening to.

By the way, just listen to the harmony opening track on "Love" - stunning!

Will
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« Reply #45 on: September 11, 2009, 12:40:22 PM »

The Love CD, which I loathed and couldn't listen to a second time, was remixed as well as remastered. I much prefer the sound and content of these new CDs. Ringo's drumming is a revelation. The bass is restored to proper importance. Maraccas and other little things show up where you didn't notice them. For instance, John's "F__in' hell" in Hey Jude is now quite audible, especially on headphones. The vocals are indeed incredible and the guitars cut like knives in places. You listen to this stuff and you might just recall this is a rock'n'roll band! Songs just explode out of your speakers. I know this music intimately. I've listened to it a million times. I'm not mistaken. There's something you need besides love.   
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GeeNorm
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« Reply #46 on: September 11, 2009, 04:28:07 PM »

Duck, I appreciate this topic, even though it is going to cost me some money!

I used to own all the Beatle albums until they were lost in a moving accident. (Ran out of boxes, used some trash bags, and some of my helping friends threw them out.)  crying  crying  crying

I was so disappointed when I replaced with CDs, they didn't sound the same. Your comments give me hope.

Norman
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« Reply #47 on: September 11, 2009, 04:31:10 PM »

I hear you. Speaking of expensive, I just pre-ordered the mono box set which is rumoured to be having a second pressing. That should throw a monkey wrench into the plans of those hoping to sell it for double on eBay.  
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BluesMan1
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« Reply #48 on: September 11, 2009, 04:41:28 PM »

   Duck, now I'm going to have to buy one @ a time, just from your review. Can't afford the set, but can build individually. Watched "Jon Lennon:Imagine" in HD the other night & noticed Ringo's skill level progressing as the years went by. Had his own way of playing, some liking it, others not. Fit in with the band perfectly, IMO. Can't wait to be able to hear him more, plus the better harmonies.
   The "Imagine" movie was cool to watch again, having seen it about 5 times. Gave a good history of the band & all of the ups & downs.
   Norman, I, too, am disappointed by my "other" Beatles CDs. These sound like they're sweet. Many forgot that all were mono until later in the albums. Have them all on CD, some being British ones. Haven't sat down & compared to the US ones, though.
   Can't wait! Just have to decide how to start buying? From the beginning or my favs first?
     Jeff   
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« Reply #49 on: September 11, 2009, 05:00:05 PM »

Bluesman - All the CDs, except for the two Capitol Albums boxes, even the '87 issues are in the original British album format. The first four '87 CDs are already mono mixes. Oddly, this is the first time the first four albums have appeared in stereo on CD. They both sound great and the remaining CDs, compared to the stereo stuff on the '87 releases, are utterly splendid. One at a time is a reasonable way to go about things. Where the Beatles are concerned, I'm totally unreasonable, however. 
 
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« Reply #50 on: September 12, 2009, 12:07:25 PM »

I've got to admit it's getting better ....
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« Reply #51 on: September 12, 2009, 12:16:26 PM »

Duck,

I have to agree about Revolver. Bought it yesterday to see if all the hype was real, and then decide what to do about the rest of the catalog. Looks like I'll be be out again today to get more!

I went track by track, comparing the old CD sound to the new remastered one. The difference was stunning. The presence of the vocals is amazing. I also thought the backing vocals (the Beatles secret weapon) were amaizingly clear. The guitar parts are crystal clear and although I thought I knew this music note for note, I still heard little enhancements of guitar parts that I never had been able to discern before. I do have some high end stereo equipment and have not yet listened to it in the car or on any other gear so YMMV, but I am sold!

I compared it to listening to a performance from the corridor outside a studio, and then opening the door and walking into the performance. Great stuff!

Going to get a few more today. Trying to decide which ones first. Abbey Road is a definate, but will also look to get an early release. This is going to be a fun weekend!!!

Joe
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« Reply #52 on: September 12, 2009, 01:15:41 PM »

I've got to admit it's getting better ....

It's getting better all the time ...   I ordered the stereo box set from Amazon yesterday.

I saw them perform live in Houston in 1965. The first words from the stage were a "Howdy, ya'll" from Paul. Pandemonium covered the rest of the show.

I did get a close "touch" though. Four girls in my high school had a Beatlettes fan club complete with matching costumes. One of their uncles was a Houston cop working security for the two concerts. At one point Ringo wiped some sweat from his forehead and tossed his handkerchief down off the back of the stage. The uncle gave it to his niece and they carefully quartered it. Without washing of course!

Norman
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« Reply #53 on: September 14, 2009, 01:58:23 AM »

So.....has anyone got the mono box yet? I've found out my local library has the stereo CDs.  Just not on the shelves yet.
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« Reply #54 on: October 02, 2009, 07:45:41 PM »

I received the Mono box set a couple of weeks ago, I waited this long to listen to it because I wanted to give it the time and attention it deserves.

All I can say is "Oh my God..."

Listening to it is an emotionally shattering experience because it takes me back to 1964 when I was nine years old and absolutely enthralled by the Beatles. The music is so clear and powerful, it brings back sense memories that have been submerged for decades. If you experienced first-hand the arrival of the Beatles, I think you'll be as blown away by the mono CDs as I am. Best purchase I've made in a loooong time...
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« Reply #55 on: October 02, 2009, 07:53:44 PM »

I received the Mono box set a couple of weeks ago, I waited this long to listen to it because I wanted to give it the time and attention it deserves.

All I can say is "Oh my God..."

Listening to it is an emotionally shattering experience because it takes me back to 1964 when I was nine years old and absolutely enthralled by the Beatles. The music is so clear and powerful, it brings back sense memories that have been submerged for decades. If you experienced first-hand the arrival of the Beatles, I think you'll be as blown away by the mono CDs as I am. Best purchase I've made in a loooong time...


How are you finding the later records in mono if you've got to those yet --- from Rubber Soul/Revolver on ( I know Abbey and Let aren't).  I got Yellow Sub from the library (only one they had out) and the second track was in mono and I didn't realize until I read the liner notes. Listening to headphones the soundstage just came to the center more, but it wasn't strange at all. I mention it because I've not owned anything in mono so it's new other than listening to my grandmother's old 78s when I was a kid.
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« Reply #56 on: October 02, 2009, 08:54:22 PM »

Well, as has been stated before this is the first time the first four CDs have been available in stereo. The first four circa '87 CDs were mono. What I want to know is ... what do you call mono that is being heard through two stereo speakers? Is it even better if you shut down one speaker?
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