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Best Music for Equipment Reviews and Listening Pleasure

Dgob

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Hi All,

I thought that ASR would be the best site on which to share and develop our own music libraries. This has been more inspired by my recent realisation that you can indeed export your own playlists (say from Qobuz) to your PC and then convert these to zip file, which we can then upload to ASR as an excel file.

I'll start the ball rolling by sharing a Playlist, which is heavily influenced by online reviewers and their selected test tracks, as well as some of my favourites. This makes it quite a long playlist, but I would hope that others will provide more focused lists that can increase our overall catalogues and listening options.

My attached one is based on a variety of genres, but is generally held together by some excellent recording engineering and consequent quality. They also provide an ability to test all aspects of our hifi equipment. I also find them pleasurable listening!
 

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  • Abstracting Sound (Review Worthy).zip
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Another quality take on male vocals (Blues oriented), in case this hits any notes. :)
 

Attachments

  • Bad Man Blue.zip
    8.9 KB · Views: 91
I don't have excel and I'm pretty sure I'm not alone.
Sorry, but I am not certain how else I can share playlists. There are security concerns that limit the ways that items can be shared on the site. If anyone can suggest an alternative method, I would be keen to adopt that.

That means that, if you have another method, please apply that and I will seek to adopt that too, If not, maybe there is a way that you can get excel as a free download.
 
Take something your familiar with, I once drove 90 miles (one way) to listen to a set of Vandersteen 3s, I brought a couple of familiar cds, but the guy only wanted to play something like “Hans and Dieter’s Happy Dulcimer“, absolutely refused play anything else. I did not buy the speakers.
 
Take something your familiar with, I once drove 90 miles (one way) to listen to a set of Vandersteen 3s, I brought a couple of familiar cds, but the guy only wanted to play something like “Hans and Dieter’s Happy Dulcimer“, absolutely refused play anything else. I did not buy the speakers.
This type of testing limitation is precisely one reason why I hope this thread can increase our options along with our listening pleasure.
 
Hi All,

I thought that ASR would be the best site on which to share and develop our own music libraries. This has been more inspired by my recent realisation that you can indeed export your own playlists (say from Qobuz) to your PC and then convert these to zip file, which we can then upload to ASR as an excel file.

I'll start the ball rolling by sharing a Playlist, which is heavily influenced by online reviewers and their selected test tracks, as well as some of my favourites. This makes it quite a long playlist, but I would hope that others will provide more focused lists that can increase our overall catalogues and listening options.

My attached one is based on a variety of genres, but is generally held together by some excellent recording engineering and consequent quality. They also provide an ability to test all aspects of our hifi equipment. I also find them pleasurable listening!
My method is to use quality recordings of strings. Cello, Violin and Piano especially. Timbral accuracy is important to me and strings are the most difficult to reproduce accurately.
 
Take something your familiar with, I once drove 90 miles (one way) to listen to a set of Vandersteen 3s, I brought a couple of familiar cds, but the guy only wanted to play something like “Hans and Dieter’s Happy Dulcimer“, absolutely refused play anything else. I did not buy the speakers.
Around here the salespeople only want to play Hotel California from the Eagles live album.
 
Around here the salespeople only want to play Hotel California from the Eagles live album.
Depending on the system/equipment the intro makes for a great sanity check.
I'd only use the original studio version, certainly not any kind of "live" mystery mix.
 
Depending on the system/equipment the intro makes for a great sanity check.
I'd only use the original studio version, certainly not any kind of "live" mystery mix.
Mystery mix, is that like mystery meat? The original Hotel California is a 14 room hotel just outside of Cabo San Lucas in Baja California. Its claim to fame (before the Eagles) was the owner hauled ice from the other side of the peninsula making it the first place in the area with cold beer.
 
I make a similar comment in a lot of threads, but the best tracks for auditioning gear (IMO) are the ones that have flaws, so you can push speakers to their limits.

With apologies to Tolstoy: "Good mixes are all alike; every bad mix is bad in its own way."

My auditioning library has a few tracks where the hi-hats are too hot, some with missing sub-bass, others with excessive sub-bass, others with very low bass, some with sibilance, some with congested midranges, some with lots of bass "details", etc.

A good mix should sound pretty good on every system. That is what most mixing / mastering engineers strive for. A good mix "translates" to everything you play it on, ideally. This makes it hard to evaluate the system... you're left to judge "good" vs. "really good" on a more subjective / wholistic level.

Using flawed mixes makes it easier because you know exactly what you're listening for in each case, not just a sense of "something" being out of balance.

In a nutshell, if you have a mix where A) it takes a nearly perfect speaker to un-mask a certain sound or B) there is a flaw that goes from acceptable to unpleasant if the speaker is unbalanced in any way, you can quickly hear those features without having to wonder.

Examples: In this song, the guitar is doubled by a synth (around 30s on) which is mixed pretty low and hard to hear if the midrange is distorted.

In this one, Paul simon's voice can get a little sibilant, which pops out if the treble is peaky or distorted.
 
Thank you. Hopefully, this helps open up sharing.
I took a look at your first file and saw a lot of artists that I am familiar with. I don't know if that says anything about my tastes in music, or why the recordings of these artists are often used for listening tests.

Maybe we should have a discussion about music and its relationship to playback gear. I feel the gear gets more than it should when compared to the music. It's like that in photography. Discussions of gear are endless while discussions of photography as an art are scarce. I guess few have a feel for art and most have credit cards to buy gear.
 
My method is to use quality recordings of strings. Cello, Violin and Piano especially. Timbral accuracy is important to me and strings are the most difficult to reproduce accurately.
Are there any particular tracks/albums in which both the engineering and performance of string recordings stand out for you?
 
I have already thanked you on your relevant thread, but would just like to point out how magnificent it is - for anyone here or in search of excellent sampling music. To paraphrase Lawrence Oates: "I'm just going inside and may be some time!"

So much to explore.

 
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