Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

compact disc, dacs, mp3 players and streaming audio
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Shadowman82
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Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

Post by Shadowman82 » 04 Dec 2018 23:12

Here is something I don't quite understand . Why are allot of CDs still falling victim to the "loudness war" during mastering . I mean these days those who don't care about dynamics and fidelity will listen to music as MP3s and on streaming services . Those who still buy CDs now do I think care at least a little about sound quality so then why still master CDs in a way that diminishes sound quality ?

AceDeuce73
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Re: Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

Post by AceDeuce73 » 04 Dec 2018 23:28

If it can still dupe some into thinking louder = better, then the practice will continue. All the industry really cares about is profit, and there are better formats to get higher quality sound from than CD. If the average consumer really cared about best sound quality DVD-Audio, Blu-ray Audio and SACD would've had more mainstream success.

Shadowman82
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Re: Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

Post by Shadowman82 » 04 Dec 2018 23:50

That's my point though . I think people who believe "louder is better" don't listen to CDs anymore , they just listen to MP3s and streaming .

As for SA-CD and DVD-Audio I think they made some big blunders early on in the formats history such as gearing marketing too much towards music in surround sound when most people don't really care about having music in surround sound . Don't know much about Blu-ray audio but I suspect people may not care much about it for similar reasons .

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Re: Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

Post by Spinner45 » 05 Dec 2018 04:29

It's a shame how music is recorded these days.
And even the artists themselves are lacking the depth that decades ago was the thing.
I've not bought anything "new" other than Adele, most of today's stuff is crap.
Thank god I've held onto my older music - when it was "music".

Shadowman82
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Re: Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

Post by Shadowman82 » 06 Dec 2018 00:32

Lucky for me I like allot of underground wave and electronic music , there is still good stuff being made there and allot of it comes out on Vinyl too . Which is good because even there the CD versions often fall victim to loudness war mastering . Sometimes I think unless an artists specifies something different CDs just get mastered loud by default .

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Re: Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

Post by Sterling1 » 06 Dec 2018 10:52

Shadowman82 wrote:
04 Dec 2018 23:50
That's my point though . I think people who believe "louder is better" don't listen to CDs anymore , they just listen to MP3s and streaming .

As for SA-CD and DVD-Audio I think they made some big blunders early on in the formats history such as gearing marketing too much towards music in surround sound when most people don't really care about having music in surround sound . Don't know much about Blu-ray audio but I suspect people may not care much about it for similar reasons .
I like your analysis of it all. I purchased an SACD Player back in 1999 or thereabouts, a Sony DVP-S9000ES. Before getting it home I stopped at a CD Store for a few SACDs and found only one. The store manager did not even know that they had that one in their inventory. In fact, he did not know anything about SACDs. Nevertheless, I could not wait to hook up my player. Boy, what a let down. I was expecting something better than CD, more detail perhaps; but, I did not get that or anything else that could be described as better. So, for the next 10 years, the only use I had for the player was to play DVDs. I'm sure others were disappointed too. At any rate, then multi-channel SACD Players and media appeared, which did give the format a breadth and depth greater than stereo; but, still there was no way to hook up these multi-channel SACD Players to a home theater system of that era. That's to say, hook-up to a preamp required a preamp with multi-channel analog inputs and at that period in time most preamps delivered a multi-channel experience only from Toslink or IEC 958, which do not carry SACD, stereo or multi-channel. Sony realized the problem and introduced the TA-P9000ES multi-channel analog preamp; but, then Sony abandoned analog multi-channel output for HDMI multi-channel output on the last SACD Players it manufactured. This created another delima, unless you had a new HDMI prepro, multi-channel was still not possible and therefore only very few could try out multi-channel SACD.

Now, the good news, some of today's inexpensive Universal Players will play multi-channel SACD and output it via HDMI; and, because today's AVRs and pre/pros all have multi-channel HDMI inputs, multi-channel SACDs can now be enjoyed by most anyone, without new equipment cost, or hassle. And, indeed, folks are trying out multi-channel SACD for the first time, apparently enjoying the experience enough for Amazon to list 32 new 2017 and 2018 SACD releases in just the first 3 pages of their SACD listing. The bottom-line is multi-channel SACD has been given a second chance; and, it seems it is finally getting a foot hold because it does deliver an experience which folks hear as sounding better than stereo. I'm one of those folks. And, BTW no loudness issues, just be sure to set the volume for crescendos, or you might get a more life-like experience on classical music, like The Firebird, than your system can handle.

Shadowman82
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Re: Why is "loudness war" still an issue on CD

Post by Shadowman82 » 07 Dec 2018 01:58

All things considered though the amount of SA-CD releases is still tiny compared to CD and even Vinyl . You are correct though , generally SA-CDs are not victims of the loudness war as they are mastered differently from CDs .

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