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Reviews: Pink Floyd: Dark Side of the Moon

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Reviews: 45

Review by Tom March 29, 2003 (1 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This is probably the best selling SACD of all time. It has great sonics and performance. It's priced well and is a classic album that will never grow old. It is reference SACD that all others are compared.

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Review by JW April 10, 2003 (3 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
Let me add a short note to the other reviews of this classic. The Stereo mix still sounds somewhat veiled on SACD, especially vis-a-vis the bass - this is my impression compared to other SACD's I have from a similar era. The SACD layer sounds more extended, detailed and dynamic than the CD layer. I have not been able to compare the mix to the 20th Ann. Edition CD but reports are that the CD sounds better. Having no multi-channel system I cannot judge the Mch mixes, but the word is that these are great. The 'problem' is one of source I guess. DSOTM has never sounded as good as say 'The Wall' or 'The Final Cut' but personally I am disappointed that the Stereo mix has not been improved further. But perhaps that was not possible. I have learned that the Mch mixes are brand new and that the Stereo mix is just a new transfer.

Postscript 12/21/03: I have now been able to compare the Hybrid disc to the 20th Anniversary Edition RBCD and it must be said that there is a marked improvement. The CD layer of the Hybrid SACD is much better than that RBCD in every respect. A number of veils have lifted so to speak, and the 20th Ann. Edition RBCD sounds very two dimensional compared to the CD-layer of the Hybrid 30th Ann. Editon. Nice clean-up job and for Floyd fans a worthwhile upgrade in my view even if they do not have SACD players.

The SACD layer trumps the CD layer of the Hybrid with the by now familiar SACD attributes of more space, dimensionality and extension. Overal the SACD layer gives you the impression of a richer and fuller musical experience.


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Review by Christine Tham April 16, 2003 (34 of 42 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This is either the most important title ever to be released on the Super Audio CD format, or yet another tired old reissue of an over-rated album from a band that nobody really cares much about these days.

Pink Floyd is arguably the third most influential British band after the Beatles and Rolling Stones. Although they never really reached the mass and enduring popularity of the Beatles, and did not last as long nor released as many albums as the Rolling Stones, there is an aura of cult coolness about them, plus a reputation for the best multimedia concerts (in the 1970s) that cements their status as cultural icons amongst their many fanatic fans.

Early Pink Floyd music was rather psychedelic and spaced out, and was dominated by Syd Barrett. However, his increasing mental instability led to the introduction of guitarist David Gilmour. The band's golden years literally started with this album, which almost singlehandedly spearheaded the popularity of "rock concept albums" in the 1970s. Originally released in 1973, it was a 'tour de force' that brought the band mainstream success. The album pioneered innovations such as significant use of synthesizers to add texture and complexity to the music, thematic linkage across songs and lyrics that appealed to every misunderstood and confused teenager. Of course, the album also gained a reputation as being best experienced whilst under the influence of strong and illicit mind-altering chemicals.

The band continued to release a number of increasingly dark and moody conceptual albums well into the early 1980s, but in my opinion never quite matched the genius of this album (although I am sure some fans would strongly disagree with me). Eventually the band broke up but reformed in the late 1980s minus their de facto leader Roger Waters, who has never quite forgiven his fellow band members ever since (although lately there are signs that a reconciliation may yet be possible).

For this review, I have decided to compare the 30th Anniversary Edition - remastered from the original stereo and multi-track master tapes into a Hybrid Stereo/Multi-channel SACD - with the following other versions in my possession:
- original International release CD (Harvest CDP 7 46001 2), released in the mid 1980s (cover printed in England, CD made in Japan)
- Japanese remastered "Eternity Gold" 24 carat CD (EMI/Harvest CP43-5771), released in 1989 (cover and CD made in Japan)
- "Limited tour edition in Pink Vinyl" Quad LP (EMI/Harvest Q4 SHVLA 804), purchased in the late 1980s (Australian pressing)
- bootleg dts 5.1 music CD (source unknown, CD-R copy)

To facilitate doing the comparison, I mainly concentrated on the songs on "Side A" - from "Speak to Me" to "The Great Gig In The Sky". I initially expected that most of the versions would be somewhat similar and any differences to be fairly subtle and hard to spot, so imagine my surprise when I discovered each version has a very unique sonic character.

First of all, the Quad LP, which I listened in stereo. This has been encoded using the CBS "SQ" system, resulting in a very expansive and enveloping soundstage. The phantom rear imaging on this has to be heard to be believed - I could have sworn I had engaged surround processing by mistake and the rear channels must have been active! I kept checking and rechecking my system to confirm that I was indeed listening in stereo and all the music came from the two front speakers. During the first three tracks I detected numerous instances of pans (synthesizer drones and noises, running and panting) around and behind me and the "explosion" towards the end of "On The Run" seemed to be all over the place. The vocals are somewhat sibilant and "brittle." The clock chimes at the beginning of "Time" are so eerily realistic they send chills down my spine. Finally, Clare Torry's voice in "The Great Gig In The Sky" sounded the most detailed compared to all the other versions - full of micro-dynamics and subtle phrasing. The album was quite pleasing to listen to and sounded "relaxed" compared to the digital formats.

Just as an experiment, I briefly engaged Dolby Pro Logic II (music mode) processing. Although this resulted in an even more expansive soundstage, in general I felt surround imaging was compromised compared to the phantom imaging I was getting from listening using two speakers. There was a tendency to steer things towards the front and to reserve the rear speakers for ambience, although certain instruments had a tendency to suddenly come from behind. However, the additional digital processing added a "veil" to the music that I didn't particularly liked, subtle though it may be.

And now onto the 30th anniversary edition. I first listened to the DSD stereo section of the disc. Initially I really did not like what I heard - I felt the vocals and instruments sounded somewhat veiled and recessed compared to the LP. When I turned up the volume, it sounded better, but also somewhat artificial. The first thing I noticed was the increased bass prominence. There seemed to be a lot of bass, but it sounded somewhat boomy and ponderous. In addition, the cymbals and the clock chimes (in "Time") sounded distinctly harsher compared to the LP, and the instruments in general slightly "pinched." This is obviously a different stereo mix from the Quad LP. The soundstage is much more front-centred, but still retains a fairly deep "3D" character. On the plus side, this version is noticeably better than the two older CD versions though not much better than the CD layer on the hybrid disc.

The CD layer in comparison sounded slightly more distorted, but at the same time the instruments were more "dynamic" and less "pinched." Overall, this is a more "relaxed" sound than the DSD stereo version, which was the opposite of what I expected. The cymbals sounded less artificial, and the bass smoother and not as boomy.

The less said about the original CD release the better. This sounds extremely muffled, dulled, blunt, and lacked detail or dynamics. It also sounded "softer" in volume levels than the other CD versions but even when I cranked up the volume levels the music still sounded uninvolving. On the plus side, the vocals on this version sounded the least harsh compared to the others, but that is due to a blurring and lack of low level detail.

The Japanese gold pressing was one the best sounding CDs I have ever heard when it was released in 1989, but now sounds somewhat dated and lacking in fidelity compared to the SACD. Of all the CD versions, it is probably the most "analog sounding" and closest in terms of sonic character to the LP. The high frequencies are well reproduced, despite the CD being mastered with preemphasis, and the clock chimes are quite impressive. Imaging seems sharper and more well defined on this version, although the soundstage was relatively flat and two-dimensional. Some instruments seem to be less pronounced on this version than the others, and the bass seems really "pinched" and boomy. The explosion towards the end of "On The Run" sound somewhat muddy and indistinct.

Comparing the multi-channel versions, I started with the DSD multi-channel version on the new SACD. This easily turns out to be the best sounding version of the bunch. Remixing from the original multi-track tapes seem to have removed an entire layer or "veil" and bring us closer to the music. The instruments are much better defined as they have been separated across more speakers, and I heard additional detail and instruments compared to the other versions. This also has the most "balanced" sounding equalisation, with tight bass, plus clean and clear cymbals. However, vocals are somewhat disembodied and sibilant. My biggest gripe is that the surround mix is somewhat "conservative" and "unadventurous" - the sound effects in the first three tracks are crying out to be mixed and panned imaginatively. After the zany imaging on the Quad LP (and also on the dts 5.1 music CD) I found the instrument placement and panning somewhat pedestrian. I did notice some instrument placement between speakers, not only across the front speakers but also between front and rear speakers and across rear speakers. The bass sounded very balanced and natural, with additional low frequency extensions that were reproduced faithfully by the subwoofer.

Lastly, the bootleg dts 5.1 music CD. This seems to have been mastered from a Quad LP that has gone through an appropriate decoder and then re-encoded onto dts 5.1 (or, actually, 4.0 as the centre channel and subwoofer appear to be silent). I can hear not only telltale pops and crackle (although there has been some attempt to digitally edit these out as well as surface noise). I can also hear inner groove distortion towards the end of each "side." The surround mix is quite interesting and feature interesting clockwise and anti-clockwise panning of sound effects. However, the surround imaging is highly unstable (as you might expect from any matrix decoding process) and will result in interesting anomalies and sudden shifts of instrument positioning.

In summary then, I would probably rank the different versions in the following order (from best to worst):
- DSD 5.1 on SACD (for the additional clarity, extended bass, but I wish the surround mix was more faithful to the Quad version)
- Quad LP (listened in stereo) (for the most relaxed and well articulated presentation, plus a killer soundstage and virtual surround imaging)
- CD layer on Hybrid SACD (I'm scoring this high mainly because it sounded the most "relaxed" compared to all the other CD versions)
- Japanese Gold CD (slightly flawed by today's standards but still holds up well)
- DSD stereo on SACD (this is a controversial rating since it mostly sounded better than all the other CD versions but I am marking it down because of the heavy and ponderous bass)
- dts 5.1 CD-R (gives a hint as to what the Quad mix is like)
- original CD version (last and very definitely least, it confirms every prejudice against CDs)

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Review by Marc P April 23, 2003 (1 of 17 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Don't really understand the hype on this one. I find it hard to keep my eyes open. I was to young to like it in the 70's. And when I listen to it now, I must admit I am far from impressed.

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Review by unclefesto April 27, 2003 (1 of 8 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
I don't know......there is just SOMETHING missing with this one, but I can't put my finger on it.
Don't get me wrong, I'm a HUGE Floyd fan, but when I listen to ELP's Brain Salad Surgery,
and then this....there's just something wrong. It sounds a tad flat.It's not my system because
Beck's Sea Change and the Police's The Classics sound awesome, as does ELP and Yes Fragile.
Am I the only one?

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Review by Rinkrat May 16, 2003 (3 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This disc should be included with every SACD player. The opening tape loops of "Money" are worth the price of admission, but from beginning to end, this is what surround sound was made for. The band even had surround when I saw them play it live at the Hollywood Bowl, so it kind of fits to hear it all this time later. If you like music and have an SACD player then this should be in your collection!

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Review by projectmayhem325 July 21, 2003 (3 of 6 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Seeing that this album was rereleased on SACD was the precipitating factor behind my purchase of my SACD system. I had been leaning towards a purchase, but I was willing to shell out a few hundred more for a system with SACD capabilites once I saw the ad for this.
There is a reason that Dark Side of the Moon stayed on the top 200 albums for nearly 20 years. sitting in the dark, listening to Brain Damage at an excessively loud volume is practically orgasmic. I don't care that the engineers decided to make Breathe in the Air it's own track because I only listen to the album as a whole.
I can only hope that Capitol decides to release their whole catalogue on SACD, because Pink Floyd has had a profound effect on all music since.

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Review by mikek October 14, 2003 (1 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
I can only be amazed that 30 years later "Dark Side of the Moon" would sell in the quantities and at the pace it has with the release of this SACD. Now if they would hustle up and bring us "Wish You Were Here" and "The Wall"

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Review by FivePointOne October 15, 2003 (3 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This was the first SACD I bought, and I picked it up the same time that I purchased my player. The pros that installed my multi-room home theater system that next day used parts of "DSOTM" to balance the speakers. That was 6 months ago.

I'm still floored by the sound of this disc.

I had grown tired of this album, and I didn't even buy the CD (instead a friend burned a copy for me). I read, however, that if you want to fully experience the 5.1 MCH SACD gestalt, "DSOTM" was the disc to get. That is so true.

The sonics are such that I feel I am inside the music. All the people I have played it for reach the same conclusions and a few of them want to buy new MCH SACD systems based on what "DSOTM" has shown can be done with audio.

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Review by Slipperman November 27, 2003 (3 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Pink Floyd's Dark Side Of The Moon is now 30 years old, but you don't hear that when you're listening to this SACD! The sound is cristall clear and brilliant, the bass is very fine and the album sounds very fresh. I exspecially like the clocks in "Time" and the bass line in "Us and them".
If you own a SACD Player and you like Multichannel discs you have to buy this album! It's stunning in every points!!!

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Review by Johnno January 26, 2004 (3 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
I'm amazed at just how clean the sound is -- especially the percussion -- and lt leaves the sound of the standard CD way behind. Only in the heaviest moments of "Us and Them" do I feel that the recording shows its age (listening through Stax Lambda professional phones, connected directly to my SACD player) and I can't really object even then. The new mix, even in plain stereo, is amazingly wide and deep with sounds right out to the extremes of the phones each side, while the clarity is equally astonishing.

Now how about "Atom Heart Mother"?

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Review by beardawgs January 29, 2004 (2 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
I grew up with this record. As a teenager I was immersing myself in all existential crap and thought of Herman Hesse highly. Pink Floyd was my music equivalent of discovering individuality and being unique. I grew up, Hesse is a faint memory, but Pink Floyd’s music is still here with me and it’s still mind-blowing as it ever was. Influential or not, IMO they are the most important band ever. I never had a chance to hear their quadro LPs, so I am most grateful for the opportunity to come back to the dark side of the Moon in surround. This record is meant to be in MC. Everything sounds natural, every single noise and effect is placed where it should be and the recording quality is equally fantastic. If the stereo version occasionally sounded crowded, MC mix just opens up everything and I feel completely immersed not in music and the recording, but in their truly astonishing and overwhelming world.

Every house should have one.

PS. Stephen, if you have ever considered special marks (something like Penguin’s ‘rosette’) for truly unique and awesome discs in every respect, this is the one to get it. Five stars are just not enough.

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Review by Noonions March 15, 2004 (1 of 2 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
If one were to own one SACD,it would be Pink Floyd's 1973 masterpiece Dark Side Of The Moon.Having played on my new Sony Dream System(DAV-FC7),I was blow away by the richness,clarity,realism and detail on the 5.1 layer,with the music never sounding so mesmerising and alive as it did on this SACD.It sounds like it was recorded today as opposed to 30 years ago!Then again,"timeless" is a word that describes DSOTM very well since its popularity has never faded,remaining on the charts for like an enternity.If you don't have this in your collection,then what are you waiting for?!GET IT NOW!

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Review by Whitehall March 17, 2004 (3 of 6 found this review helpful)
I played this for the first time for my 12 year old daughter on our new "vintage" system but in SACD. The beginning absolutely fightened her! She ran from the room!

Now THAT's an emotional response!

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Review by CaptainJack May 2, 2004 (1 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
A great attempt to capture all the nuances of an original vinyl pressing. 2CH is done well.

5.1 Mix can have a little too much rear fill.

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Review by WalterM May 6, 2004 (1 of 8 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Simply, the best.

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Review by Toni May 16, 2004 (2 of 2 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
My favorite album of all time, the best rock album ever recorded. I bought DSOTM LP when I was a teenager, the cover looked fascinating and grabbed my intention. Ever since I've listened to this record way more than any other record and this SACD was actually one of the main reasons I bought SACD player and invested on multichannel setup.

The music on the album is suberb in every way and this SACD brought up lot of new details that might have been missed on previous formats. Especially the cymbals sound clear and the bass is so natural now, I can't believe it's from the same recording I've been listening so many times before.
Multichannel mix is sometimes adventureous and it suites perfectly to the album's atmosphere.

I'd recommend this SACD to anyone, regardless their music taste, it's still just amazing. Sonics are among the best I've heard, despite the fact the album was recorded more than thirty years ago.

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Review by hawkfan May 22, 2004 (1 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This album is truly brilliant, it has the same impact on me as it did when it first came out all those years ago but now its even better, if you are thinking of buying a SACD Player then take this CD (if you have it if not borrow a copy) for a demo even though the sales assissant may not like it, hearing is believing.

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Review by lenw July 6, 2004 (2 of 3 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This has always been an awesome rock album, but in SACD it's truely incredibly. The only criticism I have is you can hear the tape hiss from the analog master very clearly at times. But that's minor compared to the dynamics and power of this recording. A must have SACD in any collection.

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Review by GraveDigger July 13, 2004 (1 of 4 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
It's the first SACD that I bought and I don't regret it !
The multichannel mix is awesome and the sound is crystal clear.
Definitely a must-have for every Pink Floyd fans.

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Review by DrOctodivx October 22, 2004 (1 of 2 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
What can I say, a crown jewel of my SACD collection. Beautiful, immersive surround mix and excellent clear sonics. No part of this album disappoints - in fact I unable to listen to this album without listening to the whole.

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Review by Chaz417 December 30, 2004 (3 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This is my favorite MC SACD period! I have listened to Pink Floyd for many years and this release is absolutely made for MC listening. I have the original Quad LP which sounds even better, but for the digital format this one rules! A lot of my SACD/DVD-A collection is listened to in 2 ch because I believe that the sound engineers really screw up when trying to make MC. For most recordings I don't believe that the musicians ever intended to have backing vocals or instruments relagated to the rear channels of a soundstage. DSOTM is the exception, it screams for MC playback. I can only hope that more Pink Floyd will be released notably The Wall and Wish You Were Here. DSOTM is a must have for any Floyd fan.

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Review by jsp January 11, 2005 (3 of 6 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
the first sacd i bought

A recording that really introduces a new listener as to the reason sacd was made in the first place.

Being a floyd fan thanks in part to my girlfriend(who heard them first when she was in her mothers womb) the sacd was a must.

the sonics of the mc mix are faultless (the cash register on money are a bit tacky though)

if you own this albumn oon any other format,but have the benefit of multichannel buy this.

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Review by mukkachukka January 13, 2005 (3 of 8 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
Short review: If I could have only one SACD in my collection, it would be this one. I've played this for people who aren't even fans of DSOTM and they were stunned by the sonics. One of the greatest albums ever. One of the greatest (if not THE greatest) SACDs released so far.

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Review by PaulHoncoop January 22, 2005 (3 of 7 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:
This is how a sacd must sound. One of the best sacd's i have in my collection.
When you hear the intro of Time, you get the feeling you're surrounded with clocks.
One of the greatest records all time. A great performance by Pink Floyd. What more can i say....maybe that you have to buy it!

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Review by Argiovanni May 8, 2005 (2 of 8 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
Recently I bought a SACD system, and this is one of my first albums. I'm only 22 years old, so this music is way older than I am, however I found this music great. The sonics, 'clicks', effects and other small thingies really makes me enjoy this album. Great for relax saturday evenings. Highly recommended!
I don't give full stars since perfection is impossible in my view.

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Review by Joerg Schlüter November 1, 2005 (11 of 15 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
First I come in contact with Pink Floyd music end 60s, beginning 70s. All on LPs and with cheap phono.
When this album first was on LP, I was impressed about the music and fascinated. The later, when CDs came, I bought the first CD. This was good, 'cause I could hear it in full length without changing the side. But I wasn't able, to say, whether it was a good recording.
Now I have a SACD/DVD-Player and what shall I say. Only "Wow"? It is too less. The LP-rocording and also the first CD-recording hidden too much of this complex work. This came clear, when I compared the CD-side of this SACD and the stereo-SACD with the multichannel recording. The stereo-SACD is better than the stereo-CD, but even the stereo-SACD is still hiding too much. Now, the whole complex of this work and the details, never heard before, came clear and understndable. This multichannel-recording is absolute fantastique it helps to understand the work.
Now, this is an example, how the complex work, which Pink Floyd has always recorded, can be done "visible".
This multichannel recording honours the work of Pink Floyds "The Dark SSide Of The Moon".
I hope, all their works, even the "old ones" (Atom Heart Mother, UmmaGumma etc.)will be soon available as multichannel-hybrid-SACDs and with same fantastique with love rerecorded.

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Review by 2-channel January 25, 2006 (11 of 35 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
Musically there is no denying that this is an excellent album, but hi-fi it is not.

From the opening bars it is very obvious that the high level of distortion from the original is faithfully maintained in the SACD release, together with all the 'noises-off' in the form of equipment mains hum etc. It is difficult, if not impossible to get past these distractions and listen to the music.

Stereo is no great shakes either, with little in the way of 3D layering to add interest. The performance is overshadowed by tape saturation, unfortunately.

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Review by SAUDIOFILO January 25, 2006 (2 of 14 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
A wonderfull sound that almost makes me cry, thanks.

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Review by azure April 6, 2006 (2 of 9 found this review helpful)
I have only compared the HD DSD stereo programme with the 1979 Stereo MFSL Half Speed Master Lp.
and, have not compared thethis SACD version with the 1994 PCM remaster RBCD nor original PCM master for RBCD..
So I cannot make any comparisons here with the previous CD releases nor surround vs. quad mix.

There is a bit of controversy out there regarding the source of the stereo program... many people have reported that there is little difference between the earlier CD, and many have not acknowledged which previous version they have compared it to.

My question is Did the stereo HD and CD layer programmes originate from the original analog stereo master or from one of the PCM masters

At worst they have sourced it from the first 80s PCM master
At best it may have been sourced from the 1994 PCM remaster
Ideally it did come from the original analog master

If it was only a "DSD remaster" from the original analog master i gather unlike the surround mix: PCM would not have been involved.....

Regardless I personally prefer the SACD version over the above MFSL release....

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Review by boltz007 May 28, 2006 (3 of 7 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
Wow....As I listened to this, I found my wife asking me if everything was OK...What was happening was me making commnets like "oh god" and Jesus". This was my reaction to hearing this on SACD. It was like listening again for the FIRST time. Wonderful wonderful experiemce. Don't even hesitate, and buy this. You won't regret it. AMAZING.

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Review by howardroark November 19, 2006 (1 of 31 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
Pink Floyd -- "Dark Side of the Moon" -- Note To Reviewers --

Whose limited stage of enlightenment keeps them in the dark and blind to the light of Multi-Ch SACD - since it does not seem to be brought up yet, I will be the first to raise the obvious question to me:
• Can they do that? Does that disqualify us?
• It just takes some a little longer.
• Others get there early - and starve!
• We all have a purpose, never fear, they will be along, just bringing up the rear!
• That Purpose : To Hear DSOTM on SACD

If You Do Nothing Else ÷÷÷

• Multi-Channel SACD Sony deck
• Decent surround speaker setup
• Clean/Efficient Amplifier | Receiver
(Yamaha | Denon | Onkyo | Marantz)
• RCA (NotCheap) SACD Cables - $200
• Clean Monster Power Power Center

÷÷÷ In This Lifetime

(*) Why Only Sony?
1. Because they invented SACD they just sound better than when played on any other brands, all else the same.
2. I agree with those who feel it should not be this way, but my experience is that way. There are far worse things in life.
3. Damn lucky to argue the finer points of which what were used to make this or that re-mastered SACD¿?
4. Why? Because it is Sony. I believe it is fair.
5. To the extent that you get for what you pay. For what you don't pay, you do not get.

• Sony TV's & components work best when they work All Sony. I once bought a Panasonic VCR with a brand new Sony Flat Screen 32" TV that would not play DVD or VHS without a faint green line down the side edge of the screen. Finally bought the Sony model, for $100 more, and the picture was perfect.

Besides, no matter what anyone pays or saves or manages to sock away, even the stingiest person on the planet, saved every penny, returned coupons, got the nickel back on every can saw, wherever she went - even known to pull over on the interstate for one can.


Nobody ever saved their way to wealth or independence.

Nobody ever slaved their way to freedom or sovereignty.

Agree :|: Disagree
• To be analytical and intellectual provides a hidden unbroken boundry.
• That is -- at best -- a poor way we avoid thoughts to be avoided;
• While in the process of being lost in the thoughts we designed to lose us - the thinker - us that thought the thought was first a great idea.

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Review by 3altoids April 13, 2007 (1 of 12 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
Was not a Pink Floyd fan before purchasing this SACD. I am now. This SACD is the best one in my collection.

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Review by threerandot May 27, 2007 (4 of 5 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
Dark Side of The Moon is certainly one of those watershed moments in popular music history. For anyone who has heard the album in traditional Compact Disc or vinyl, SA-CD will certainly offer an entirely new experience of this record.

Songs like "On The Run" are very impressive, with plenty of panning effects which purists may object to. The instrumental moments of "Time" are very impressive with plenty of deep, deep bass and percussion with lots of reverb. As this is however, a 1973 analogue recording, you are not going to experience the kind of sound that a DSD recording could have offered. The recording certainly shows its age.

I am not a huge fan of Pink Floyd, but I do remember my brothers and I playing this quite a bit years ago. Favorites for me are the opening moments of Time, On The Run and Any Color You Like. The Great Gig in The Sky can go on and on however. Us and Them is highlighted by the saxaphone, which stands out very nicely in the MCH mix.

This is certainly better than the album has ever sounded and fans of Pink Floyd will certainly not be disappointed. This is recommended with only small reservations. It certainly is a good way to experience the potential of MCH listening and it makes sense that this was one of the very first SACDs to showcase the format.

(This review refers to the MCH portion of this disc.)

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Review by Empanadilla January 2, 2009 (3 of 18 found this review helpful)
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So many missed opportunities here!!!
This is an "Extended Stereo" mix :=P ....
DISCLAIMER:If that's how you like the MC mixes, well, fine
But, after you compare this with Alan Parsons' original Quad mix (where, for example the "Us and Them" delays were set individually for each of the 4 chs.-ANOTHER MISSED CHANCE on this sacd-bummer), you can see that I would have preferred to have them (at least)to release the 1973 mix along with the new one.
The whole experience should be psychedelic, and the 1973 AP Quad mix is consequent-unfortunately, this is a "boring"(I'd say cowardly) mix that wanted to play it safe-something that comes from middle aged artists being ashamed of their past, what a shame....
This kind of Extended Stereo mix is fine with stuff like Steely Dan, but NOT Pink Floyd...
I traded mine back without making it to the end, I couldn't stand it...
Sure , this review will get panned , but remember my disclaimer...
This gets half a star, cause I can't give it a minus 5...

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Review by analogue March 4, 2009 (2 of 7 found this review helpful)
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Do I need to even say that this is a landmark rock album from the early 70's, one of the highest selling albums ever created and loved all over the world by people that don;t even like rock and roll????

I have read so many reviews about this sacd and I won't touch on any of them. People who love this album have listened to it over the course of many years.perhaps thousnands of times. All I can say is that this album is very much appreciated by so many that it also becomes personal to them. People want it to sound a certain way and if it doesn't may get a critical review.

I have also read that the two channel layer is not really a dsd recording. This is not true so don;t believe it. One listen and anyone can tell that it's not a cd layer. There was a comparison of this sacd against a vinyl record (first printing). They compared the two channel mix. The critics used a very expensive sacd player against a very expensive turntable. And it was a very close match with the vinyl barely winning the battle. Once you listen to the unbelievable sound of the grandfather clock chiming you will have no doubt as to the quality of this sacd. A friend of mine exclaimed "Where's the clock I can't see it?" The sound is warm, great layering of instruments, warm powerful and steady bass...vocals are realistic. Nice guitar work. It;s all there.

I have heard some people say that the tapes have become worn out a little over time. I can't say really. I also know that this album can be a strain on a stereo system as it is very dynamic and powerful. So watch the volume. The track "Us and them" and the powerful chorus's seem to dry out a little. I don't know if it's my player unable to resolve the dynamics or if it's tape wear from the original masters.

This is one of the greatest rock albums of all time. This is not in question. People are simply drawn to this music.

I highly recommend this sacd to anyone who loves this album. All in all it sounds very impressive and is an excellent dsd mastered sacd..

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Review by wolf359 March 28, 2009 (4 of 7 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
This seminal album needs no introduction or review. There are legions of fans out there years later who still listen to it on a regular basis and know its complex structure note for note. It has been extensivly analyised and broken down and anything that could possibly have been
said has been said. Despite that it is an accquired taste there are those who don't like it and a mercifully a small few who have never heard it.
So now we have a new version on a differing format to listen to. The 5.1 version on as presented on the SACD is a differing and subtly different mix from the orginal SQ disc. There are those purists who belive that any tampering is heresy and it would perhaps best to reissue the orginal quad 4.0 disc warts and all.
I disagree what we have is an organic evolution of the orginal concept. Some feel that the 5.1 mix is a little conservative and bland. I view it more as a more mature use of the current technology. For example the famous cash till and clocks sequences now seem more mannered and restrained rather than directly in your face (or should that be ears). As has been mentioned elsewhere there seems to be an obvious lack of bass however if the setting of your sub is correct the bass is there very strong very low and very very subtle so low that it isn't obvious but it underpins everything.
Intrestingly I played the disc to a somewhat jaded Floyed fan who had never heard any of the multichannel mixes on any format. His own words were "wow" he now owns the sacd with no means to play it but he derives comfort from knowing what he has in his possession that is possibly the best comment of all

the other versions on the disc are equally as good, the stereo CD layer surpasses the orginal CD issue (EMI 746 001 2) by a wide margin, The sacd stereo is a even better but it the 5.1 mix that I keep returning to. It is stunning that with the correct levels of care and attention just how good a older analogue recording can sound which both delights and saddens me. The sad part is that so few pop albums will ever be presented as well as this but delighted that this jewel is available

An album to play all the way through it demands to be listened to, not heard as background

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Review by xmen269 May 7, 2009 (2 of 19 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:    
This SACD is the victim of LOUDNESS WAR.
The best version of Dark Side of The Moon on optical disc is Mobile Fidelity's UltraDisc.

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Review by Ramble October 14, 2009 (0 of 1 found this review helpful)
Performance:   Sonics:  
I have a Canadian pressing LP the MoFi cd and now the SACD dual layer. I like both the SACD and MoFI cd; just that I find the SACD sounds a bit clearer/sharper; which I put down to a combination of the surround mix and the extended frequency response. Must admit though that I was disappointed the running at the start of Time does not run around your head like it did in the old 8-track tape of days gone bye.

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Review by DJ Curlee Fry January 11, 2010 (1 of 4 found this review helpful)
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It just became apparent to me that this album (well, all albums, really) should only be listened to on vinyl or SACD. PCM should be out-lawed. And a fine example is my own realization that I'm hearing a saxaphone solo in the song 'Money', yet some how I never noticed this before listening to the regular CD all these years.

Note to newbies such as me: If you only have two speakers, be sure you're SACD player is set to 'Stereo', not multi-channel, which is usually default. Or else you'll have parts of songs go AWOL. In stereo you'll lack nothing. All this multi-channel-foolery isn't nesessary to enjoy this classic album.

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Review by gregs1104 January 30, 2010 (0 of 1 found this review helpful)
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The stereo SACD version here is the best sounding stereo version of this album available. You can certainly hear where you're being limited by the quality of the master tapes though. Listen to how the loud parts in "Us and Them" just smack up against what they could get onto the tape; it's almost palpable how the tape overloads on "front line died" as an example.

They hybrid CD layer sound funny though. If you're not listening in SACD, you want to get the older remaster that first showed up in the "Shine On" box set and has been reissued in a couple of other forms too.

The surround mix is boring as hell though. Floating around the land of bootlegs, there is an immaculately mastered DVD-A version made from a good quality copy someone snuck out of the original quad masters. That version is what you want for surround. The original Alan Parsons quad mix is miles more interesting than the one on the SACD, and whoever did the 24/96 conversion did a great job. The Alan Parsons Quad Mix 24/96 DVD-A is the definitive version of this album to own. Splitting things into four channels so well unmasks a world of detail you just don't hear on any other version, including either SACD mix. I highly recommend a bit of Bittorrent work to obtain a copy if you can arrange it.

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Review by albee213 April 9, 2010 (5 of 5 found this review helpful)
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Let me make this easy.

I have heard Dark side on LP, CD and SACD. I played the LP back to back on my stereo using mostly Sony equipment and an older record player that’s in good shape. Playing both with zero EQ'ing (my CD player has its own volume level so both were same level) and some the record about 10 second delay they both really sound exactly the same. I have compared many records to the CD's and they sound exactly the same minus the NOISE from records.

The SACD is a hybrid with the CD and the SACD 5.1 and supposedly has a “stereo” SACD track.

The CD sounds like what you expect from a CD. The stereo SACD track IS EXACTLY THE SAME AS THE CD TRACK. I have spent countless time switching back and forth and it IS THE SAME!
Now we get to the SACD. I do not like it for the special effects and surround sound. But when you hear Us and Them there is stuff you never heard from any record or CD. The vocals are so loud and powerful that it will make you hear all the problems with both vinyl and CD’s. Vinyl and CD’s both FLATTEN the sound of the original master tapes and when you hear this you will notice that they both lose some of the sound.

SACD is superior to all!!!! I am giving lower score to 5.1 becuase really I wish they just did it in 2.0 but in no way do they ruin the music with too much surround.

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Review by Jijagua March 18, 2011 (2 of 2 found this review helpful)
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This album has been a favorite of mine for many years. In fact, it might have been the first CD I ever purchased. However, when I ran home to listen to that CD I was disappointed by the high level of tape hiss on the album.

Some years later I purchased the Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab (MFSL) version of the CD and it was much better than the original CD in every way - less hiss and more of the music came through. The details were better and more defined. And the bass was wall-shaking.

Now comes the SACD version. I've been listening to the SACD version in stereo mode for awhile now, and it is way better than the original CD and slightly better than the MFSL version. The tape hiss is immensely reduced, but not completely eliminated. There are more details than in the other versions. For example, there is a small snippet at the end of "Us and Them" where I can hear the sax has a little more warble than I've ever heard before. In fact, I found myself playing back just that last bit of sax to hear it (just to make sure it was there). The overall sound is much more fluid than the previous CD's. The left-right spaciousness is ridiculously wide. The only gripe is that some of the highest ends are a little fuzzy - most likely the original recording couldn't handle the highest extremes. The bass still vibrates pictures on the wall. Extremely blast-able at the highest levels the stereo will play.

For all that I knew about this album, I've never listened to it in multi-channel until I got a pair of Audio Technica ATH-M50 headphones. Paired with a Little Dot III tube headphone amp, this album was absolutely stunning. Now, there is still the issue with the recording's ultimate limitations with the highest ends slightly fuzzy (or buzzy or frizzy, whatever). But these issues are so small as to be very forgivable. The overall sound envelopes in a way the stereo version never could. For example, in beginning of the album when there are all of those special effects, I never realized that there was more than just left-right. In the multi-channel version, I could hear that guy running from the front-right to the back-left. In the stereo version, I always thought that was simply left-right, and it always seemed a little weak in the middle (sort of a lapse in the middle of the run). Now I know that is was meant to go from the front to back - very impressive. All of the other special effects are similar to the running guy. So, whatever you've known about the stereo version, you cannot possibly appreciate the multi-channel version unless you've heard it.

Also, the SACD version seems the most cleaned up - I could swear that the vocals were more clean like they've been polished (almost squeaky clean somehow). All the instruments are large and well-defined. The sound completely envelopes the listener. I really never "heard" this album until I listened to the multi-channel SACD.

Great album and a sound that is almost as good.

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Review by MileHighNative March 30, 2011 (4 of 4 found this review helpful)
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I'm shocked to hear the stereo purists on this album. Roger et. al. were not confined by the concept of stereo when recording this album, Roger especially. He always had the panning effect in mind so if you want to hear it the way it was intended, and subsequently performed, then as a fan seek out a way to listen to a multi channel mix. I have a perfectly matched 5.1 channel system so each speaker matches each other in timpre. This wasn't the first case when I played the multi channel layer. However, getting perfectly matching rear surrounds made this album come alive for me in a way it never had. This was Roger's complete vision. Ps, I'm not discounting any of the other memembers contribution, (Nick's quote abuot the ageless success was all due to the drumming was perticularly charming) However Roger at this time was hugely consumed with new possiblities of recording the sonic experience. That's why tracks like On the Run were included. At the time, the technology wasn't quite there for the average consumer. But now, thanks to SACD and the explosion of home theatre systems this experience is open to a huge new market of Floyd fans.

This isn't my favorite SACD, but it is the one I demo most often because of how familiar the material is and the general quality of the transfer. It makes you wonder if they had only done this 20 or 30 years earlier.

This SACD makes me sad more modern artist don't have this kind of vision to demand the possiblities of multi channel recordings. Imagine what Arcade Fire, Mumford and Sons, Florence + The Machine, Cee Lo Green, The Decemberists or even Daft Punk could do just to name a few. (Flaming Lips go without saying but they went with DVD-A)

Dear Recording Industry: I don't buy CDs anymore - if I buy a physical album it is an SACD and I pay a premium for it. How do you not get this? If you die, don't blame mp3s and compressed music. Blame yourselves.

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Review by pvcmusiclover January 16, 2013 (2 of 2 found this review helpful)
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Definitely one of my favorite albums. As I grew as an audiophile, I came to the realization that this is not and will never be a test of audiophile sound quality. That being said, I've heard had gazillion versions of this album - the SQ LP, the 1980s CD, the MFSL CD, the MFSL LP, etc. Out of all those, I liked the MFSL CD the best, although it certainly jacked up the bass a bit too much (most of the MFSL Pink Floyd CDs seem to do that for whatever reason).

IIRC, the band recorded the music tracks to a multi-track, but comressed it all and bounced it over to another multi-track, where they added sound effects, then eventually bounced the sound effects + music bounce muilti-track to the final master tape. The SACD release cuts the music bed back a generation. This seems valid, as the music seems a bit more clean and transparent in the SACD release, over the old analog versions I've heard.

All the same, this mix is kind of lacking. I would agree with the previous reviewer who said it sounded "pinched." While it is sourced from DSD (or at least high res PCM converted to DSD), there is something subtle about it that doesn't sound "right." I can't put my finger on it.

I'd like to see them do a new SACD remaster. The recent Analogue Productions release of Wish You Were Here sounded terrific.

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