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Loudness war has invaded the audiophile streaming services.

jsrtheta

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I don't use any streaming service for a few reasons, but primarily because I believe artists should be paid. For that reason, I buy new music from the artists themselves.

An English friend of mine, whose music is on Spotify, has to sell about 10,000 downloads to realize ten quid.

As in just about every other artistic endeavor, the modus operandi remains screw the creator. Well, screw that.
 
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ThatM1key

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I don't use any streaming service for a few reasons, but primarily because I believe artists should be paid. For that reason, I buy new music from the artists themselves.

An English friend of mine, whose music is on Spotify, has to sell about 10,000 downloads to realize ten quid.

As in just about every other artistic endeavor, the modus operandi remains screw the creator. Well, screw that.

Some artists let youtube (and other platform free platforms) have the full song and then artists bitch about money and piracy. Then these music companies get mad at people for recording/downloading these songs that were basically given away for free. If the artist only has there music on bandicamp and paid-for streaming services, then sure they can complain about there earning rates.
 

jsrtheta

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Some artists let youtube (and other platform free platforms) have the full song and then artists bitch about money and piracy. Then these music companies get mad at people for recording/downloading these songs that were basically given away for free. If the artist only has there music on bandicamp and paid-for streaming services, then sure they can complain about there earning rates.

He doesn't provide his stuff for free. And his spotify numbers are what other artists have claimed as well. It's a ripoff, IMHO.

Would you want to average about $45.00 per quarter for your annual salary?
 

Taketheflame

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He doesn't provide his stuff for free. And his spotify numbers are what other artists have claimed as well. It's a ripoff, IMHO.

Would you want to average about $45.00 per quarter for your annual salary?
This is one big reason (aside from liking having physical media) I don't rely solely on streaming for music. The vast majority of what I stream is stuff I already own a physical version of, and a lot of the time I use streaming to discover new music - and I'll buy a physical copy of new discoveries that I enjoy enough to want it. I figure it's two revenue streams for the artist that way...

Yes, I realize I'm probably an exception to the rule these days, but the economics of streaming stink for artists. I might even go as far to argue that it's not sustainable for the long haul - even if the counterargument from others might be that music just isn't "worth" what it used to be to most people (aka - the low payouts from streaming are simply "what the market will bear").
 

jsrtheta

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This is one big reason (aside from liking having physical media) I don't rely solely on streaming for music. The vast majority of what I stream is stuff I already own a physical version of, and a lot of the time I use streaming to discover new music - and I'll buy a physical copy of new discoveries that I enjoy enough to want it. I figure it's two revenue streams for the artist that way...

Yes, I realize I'm probably an exception to the rule these days, but the economics of streaming stink for artists. I might even go as far to argue that it's not sustainable for the long haul - even if the counterargument from others might be that music just isn't "worth" what it used to be to most people (aka - the low payouts from streaming are simply "what the market will bear").

Yeah, except the market belongs to the streamers. It used to be an artist toured to promote their new CD or LP, because they made the real money off the disc. Now the artist tours to pay the rent. Selling the music via streaming brings in nothing.

Hard to build a career when you have to have at least one "second" job to survive. This is not a sustainable business plan. At all.
 

firedog

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I say this again (for the n'th time on all forums) a true audiophile streaming service would curate the good masters for us to enjoy .
But that entails manual work and research which costs money .
Do any streaming actually covering their costs these days ? at all ?
They are contractually prevented from doing this in many cases. They don't have eternal rights to stream a specific version of an album.
The labels/distributors can simply switch the version or time limit/limit number of steams for the rights. Then it's stream the version we want you to, or don't stream it at all.
 

firedog

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I say this again (for the n'th time on all forums) a true audiophile streaming service would curate the good masters for us to enjoy .
But that entails manual work and research which costs money .
Do any streaming actually covering their costs these days ? at all ?
It may not matter. Most of them are partially owned by several record labels or other corporate giants. Their royalty payouts go mostly to the owners, who are happy to make gobs of money that way and have the losses show up on the books of the streaming service. It's worth it to them to keep the streaming service afloat.
 
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ThatM1key

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I have an update on the DA music on Tidal. I've been getting DA music ads on fb and other sites. Tidal is doing a bit of false advertising about DA music. I have a quote straight from the horses mouth:

"Dolby Atmos Music allows people to connect with their favorite music in a whole new way, pulling them into a song and revealing what was lost with stereo recordings. Listeners can discover hidden details and subtleties with unparalleled clarity. Whether it’s a complex harmony of instruments placed around a listener, a legendary guitar solo that fills a room, a massive bass drop that washes over the audience, or the subtle breath a singer takes, Dolby Atmos gives music more space and the freedom to unleash every detail and emotion as the artist intended." SRC

Yes DA music is more immersive than stereo but its not lossless. I know we talked about this before but my problem is that Tidal is still telling people that this is lossless. I do know that theres true lossless versions of DA out there but its pretty rare.
 

Dougey_Jones

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So it goes. Buy the newest MQA DAC based on “scientific“ SINAD wars and then use it to stream DR6 music :D

Such a bait post, taking a dig at SINAD being unscientific (it's not) when that's not even being discussed. Definitely pat yourself on the back for this one though.
 

puppet

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I started to notice this with Amazon as well so today I compared a CD with the stream on meters. 30% higher gain with Amazon vs CD.
Was bad enough that I thought it was the speakers ... till I checked. Norah Jones sounded almost blaring on some passages. Nothing like distorted digital files.

Amazon wasn't like this a year ago or even 6mo ago.
 

Dougey_Jones

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Reality check, why would any company optimize the experience for 1% of the population or less, when everyone else is listening to Norah Jones on an Alexa device?
 
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ThatM1key

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Reality check, why would any company optimize the experience for 1% of the population or less, when everyone else is listening to Norah Jones on an Alexa device?
Nobody would care if it was mp3/ogg quality but since these services promise "High fidelity", I'm going to expect it to sound actually better.
 

Taketheflame

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Reality check, why would any company optimize the experience for 1% of the population or less, when everyone else is listening to Norah Jones on an Alexa device?
Not only that, but it's probably more fair to blame the record labels/rights owners than Amazon (or whichever streaming service being used) - they're the ones that provide the masters after all.

My experience has been that more popular releases are more likely to be a remaster of some sort, and more "obscure" music is more likely to use the original master/safer from loudness war BS.
 
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puppet

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Nobody would care if it was mp3/ogg quality but since these services promise "High fidelity", I'm going to expect it to sound actually better.
My thinking as well. Genre wise, I listen to almost anything but do try to avoid "remasters". With a few exceptions, they never really sound right to me. Which begs the question of "Why bother at all?" I can except a crappy recording for what it is. It's the delivery now that has me questioning a motivation as this issue doesn't seem to differentiate between remasters or original recordings.

After running digital "full up" for quite some time, seems now I have to lower input levels to regain audio quality from the service. I'm not certain how many recordings are being delivered this way now but it does seem to be more than less. Maybe I'm a bit more meticulous of system gain structure than average. When there is a change in source gain it's really apparent. 30% is quite a bit by any standard. We've all heard recordings that walk to the line and cross it. In general, they are clipped and distortion is manageable.

This is a delivery level issue now. If you've ever heard a trumpet player "overblowing" ... that is the condition.
 
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ThatM1key

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My thinking as well. Genre wise, I listen to almost anything but do try to avoid "remasters". With a few exceptions, they never really sound right to me. Which begs the question of "Why bother at all?" I can except a crappy recording for what it is. It's the delivery now that has me questioning a motivation as this issue doesn't seem to differentiate between remasters or original recordings.

After running digital "full up" for quite some time, seems now I have to lower input levels to regain audio quality from the service. I'm not certain how many recordings are being delivered this way now but it does seem to be more than less. Maybe I'm a bit more meticulous of system gain structure than average. When there is a change in source gain it's really apparent. 30% is quite a bit by any standard. We've all heard recordings that walk to the line and cross it. In general, they are clipped and distortion is manageable.

This is a delivery level issue now. If you've ever heard a trumpet player "overblowing" ... that is the condition.

I only accept modern mainstream music having terrible DR because that's just how it is. Nobody would care about DR if you got the product or service for cheap, they just care about there music. Then there's people (my old self) that thought music on Tidal/Qobuz was better than Spotify and YouTube. The music sounded louder than it should be, looked at direct files and confirmed my thinking. These poor people, thinking there listening to loseless gold while actual listening to HD versions of dog shit. At that point, I would rather listen to that dog shit at a low bitrate on youtube for free. When it comes to Tidal for me. I mix my playlists directly. Sometimes the 1+ DR higher version sounds better and sometimes the Lower DR sounds better. For example 80s country is really affected by this. Same song, many versions. One has a DR of 7 while another has a DR of 12.
 

Dougey_Jones

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I never bought into the MQA hype because I’m technically competent and they never offered an actual explanation regarding where these new digital transfers actually came from. Someone else mentioned AI image enhancement, which I think is an ok analogy, but I honestly don’t even think the story behind MQA is that good, I think it’s just plain old classic bullshit/marketing.

I’m still quite happy with my Spotify Premium Family account (6 premium accounts for $16.99/mo) combined with the thousands of hours of FLAC that I can pull up if I feel like using Foobar. I’m also cautiously optimistic about Spotify HiFi.. all they have to do is deliver red book CD quality FLAC, but streaming, and I’ll gladly pay the premium.
 

levimax

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If DR is important to you, to me while secondary to FR it is one of the keys to the "hi-fi" listening experience, streaming is not really a great option on its own. New music is what it is and streaming is fine but for older dynamically mastered music the streaming services generally offer remastered versions which inevitably mean lower DR and sometime radically lower DR than the original versions. There is an easy and inexpensive solution at least for now which is older original CD's. You can pick up thousands of titles for next to nothing ($1 to $2) at thrifts and for a few dollars more pick up rarer titles for $10 or less on the auction sites. That way you can have the dynamic mastering of you favorite older music and not be beholden to the whims of the streaming services, record labels, MQA, etc.
 
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ThatM1key

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I think of MQA has a SuperMP3 only it has be decoded with hardware for some reason. I really doubt MQA needs hardware to decode.
 

Dougey_Jones

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I think of MQA has a SuperMP3 only it has be decoded with hardware for some reason. I really doubt MQA needs hardware to decode.

MQA is bologna, just ignore it. Levimax is right about buying CD's on the cheap. I've ripped all of mine to FLAC, and acquired those that I couldn't find through less scrupulous manners.
 
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