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Discussion: Mendelssohn: Complete Concertos - Markiz

Posts: 8

Post by DSD September 17, 2008 (1 of 8)
All of Mendelssohn's Concertos came in the mail today on a single SACD!

Playing time is 4 hours 15 minutes 55 seconds! BIS calls this an "ULTRA EXTENDED PLAYING TIME" SACD. It is accomplished by using the area reserved for the multi-channel mix to extend the playing time in 2 channel stereo. Thus in 2 channel stereo it is possible to get over 4 hours of music on a single SACD. Also the SACD is single layer and has no CD layer! Yahoo, I love single layer SACDs, plus I have never found a single use for the unnecessary CD layer. I am sure the CD layer is not here as it could only contain 1/4 of the music.

This SACD is from 16 Bit PCM master tapes and is sold for the same price as their regular SACDs, I paid $17.50. The sound quality is much better than expected based on how unimpressed I am with most SACDs from 48kHz 24 Bit master tapes. Of course BIS' superb engineering accounts for much of the excellent sound. Even so the sound of solo and massed violins is very un-CD like, Smooth, beautiful and with lots of ambiance. Evidently upsampling even 16 Bit PCM to DSD offers greatly improved sound, I am extremely impressed!

This is really a nice idea for us 2 channel high resolution folks. There are a ton of 2 channel stereo recordings out there that would make excellent "ULTRA EXTENDED PLAYING TIME" SACDs. Old stereo analog tapes from the golden age would be prime for this treatment. Can you image complete VOX BOX sets on a single SACD? All of Brahms Symphonies on a single SACD? Complete ballets and opera's a single SACD? The ideas are endless!

Oh I didn't submit a formal review as most of these concertos were brand new to me! The one concerto I really know is the Violin in E minor and I thought that was very well played! There is an excellent review by aoqd22. There is also an SACD of String Symphonies by Mendelssohn (4 hours 15 minutes) and 5 SACD set (for the price of 2) of all of Bach's Organ works. Bissie will there be more? Please?

Post by Claude September 17, 2008 (2 of 8)
DSD said:

Evidently upsampling even 16 Bit PCM to DSD offers greatly improved sound, I am extremely impressed!

Does that mean that with a PCM-DSD upsampling DAC you would finally be able to enjoy the sound of CDs? ;-)

Post by DSD September 17, 2008 (3 of 8)
Claude said:

Does that mean that with a PCM-DSD upsampling DAC you would finally be able to enjoy the sound of CDs? ;-)

Could be? I'd have to hear it first but that does sound logical. Of course for me it's too late as I no longer own any CDs, but for others still trying to get their CDs to sound decent this may be their answer?

Another consideration: It would seem to me that the upsampling would best be handled on the software side using professional equipment (16 Bit PCM to DSD pressed as SACD) versus on the hardware side (16 Bit PCM CD upsampled by player to DSD)?

In the first case the Master tape is being upsampled during conversion to DSD prior to pressing of the SACD, in the second case the upsampling occurs after the CD is pressed during playback in one's home.

With the PCM to SACD upsampling only has to happen once during mastering, with CD to DSD it must be performed each time the CD is played. My guess is the PCM to SACD is still going to sound superior to the CD upsampled to DSD?

Post by bissie September 17, 2008 (4 of 8)
DSD said:

Oh I didn't submit a formal review as most of these concertos were brand new to me! The one concerto I really know is the Violin in E minor and I thought that was very well played! There is an excellent review by aoqd22. There is also an SACD of String Symphonies by Mendelssohn (4 hours 15 minutes) and 5 SACD set (for the price of 2) of all of Bach's Organ works. Bissie will there be more? Please?

Yes, already out:

Dowland's Complete lute Music with Jakob Lindberg - BIS-SACD-1724, also with 4"15'55 playing time (we were a bit lucky there...).

Thanks fot your nice words - enjoy - best Robert

Post by Jonty December 5, 2008 (5 of 8)
I don't feel that I let vsoft's review go without comment. He seems very disappointed by almost all the BIS extended play SACDs. BIS are very clear as to what these discs are. By taking advantage of the storage capacity of the SACD format they are able to put recordings made at 16bit 44.1Hz on fewer discs. No special claim is made for the sound quality but it will be as good as the original RBCD. I don't have this disc but I do have the RBCD of the Violin Concertos and have always thought it rather well and naturally recorded. The companion disc of the Mendelssohn String Symphonies is just fine although the sound varies from session to session it is never less than very good. To compare these discs with Mp3 data is grossly unfair.

More please Bissie.

Post by DSD December 5, 2008 (6 of 8)
Zeus In vsoft's review of the "Mendelssohn: Complete Concertos" he said "I cannot say anything about performance because I stopped the player after three minutes." Isn't it required that one actually listens to what one reviews? It also means his comment on the sound quality is just for the first three minutes out of 4 hours 15 minutes and 55 seconds.

I for one believe this SACD, even thought it comes from a 44.1kHz 16 bit master sounds much better than any CD I've ever heard and I've heard all the audiophile CDs. One big difference is the strings are much smoother and more relaxing than any 16 Bit 44.1kHz CD, I believe the upsampling to DSD helps smooth things out. But that is just MHO.

I also think if you are going to do a negative review and I've done my share, it is important to listen to the entire recording several times at least no matter how painful or how much you hate it. If one is not willing to do this then one should not do a negative review, but again just MHO.

Post by zeus December 5, 2008 (7 of 8)
DSD said:

Zeus In vsoft's review of the "Mendelssohn: Complete Concertos" he said "I cannot say anything about performance because I stopped the player after three minutes." Isn't it required that one actually listens to what one reviews?

That's what the review ratings are for.

Post by DSD December 6, 2008 (8 of 8)
zeus said:

That's what the review ratings are for.

Thanks Zeus, that does tell the story:
10 of 10 recommend the SA-CD and
0 of 10 found vsoft's review helpful

Closed