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Decoding Deep Purple - MACHINE HEAD

fredblue

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a few Discogs listings..

EMI Europe 2003 SACD with UK Quad mix;


Warner 2001 DVD-Audio with 5.1 mix;


Warner Japan 2011 SACD with same 5.1 mix as DVD-Audio;


EMI Europe 2012 40th Anniversary box set including DVD-Video disc with UK Quad mix;

 

ar surround

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winopener

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Only n.3 (5.1 mix) has been released on DVD-A.
 

quicksrt

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I want the UK quad on that 4.1 DVD-V inside Machine Head 40th Anniversary box. That darn thing is now out of print, but holding at $90 to $100 for the time being, with sellers all over the world offering sealed new copies. I'd better move on it one day soon.

My SACD rip of this mix just does not sound great. It sounds like Q-Linda suggests the DVD-V as a best option for some reason. Yet that SACD is quite a desirable collectible.

But when it comes down to it, I think I like the US 1973 quad mix the best, as it appeared on Q4. Got the good conversion.
 
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J. PUPSTER

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I want the UK quad on that 4.1 DVD-V inside Machine Head 40th Anniversary box. That darn thing is now out of print, but holding at $90 to $100 for the time being, with sellers all over the world offering sealed new copies. I'd better move on it one day soon.

My SACD rip of this mix just does not sound great. It sounds like Q-Linda suggests the DVD-V as a best option for some reason. Yet that SACD is quite a desirable collectible.

But when it comes down to it, I think I like the US 1973 quad mix the best, as it appeared on Q4. Got the good conversion.
You’re making me wonder what these other mixes sound like. I’m not really a collector, but I also know most of these various formats can hold their value and even sky rocket 🚀 over time; at least for now. It’s fluid though; for example when I bought the Rhino CTA I felt I had a great disc & investment, but then the Chicago Quadio box came out even better, and I started seeing more of the stand alone DVD-As showing up on eBay for less than before. Who knows for sure if or when a better Blu-Ray will be released of at least these old popular titles? I guess it’s also how much I’m into a particular title, in order to have that curiosity in how the other mixes and sound overall are differing.
 

winopener

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Think that everone agre with me on saying that the Chicago Quadio box has been the best Value For Money ever dreamed of... i'm not expecting anymore another "such a steal" release anytime soon.
Said that, it's a pity the the USA quad mix never made it on official digital format. Maybe when they launch a streaming service? Who knows?
 

sjcorne

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You’re making me wonder what these other mixes sound like.
The 5.1 mix is my least favorite of the three. Most of the music is in the fronts, though you do get an occasional backing vocal or discrete instrumental flourish in the rears. I’m pretty sure there’s at least one track with nothing but echo in the rears though. The center channel is primarily isolated bass guitar.

The U.K. quad mix has the rhythm section, vocals, and some guitar solos in the front channels. Guitar is in one rear speaker and keyboard/organ is in the other.

The U.S. quad mix has the drum kit spread over all four channels - the snare and kick are in the front, but the cymbals are in the rears. Guitar and keys are in the fronts this time, and in the rears you get some isolated backing vocals and solos. I think the bass guitar is totally isolated in the rears.
 
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quicksrt

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The U.S. quad mix has the drum kit spread over all four channels - the snare and kick are in the front, but the cymbals are in the rears. Guitar and keys are in the fronts this time, and in the rears you get some isolated backing vocals and solos. I think the bass guitar is totally isolated in the rears.
There is lots of isolated instrumental parts in rears on US quad. And it feels solid and well thought out, and fidelity is lovely. I put it on after reading this thread and listened to Highway Star paying special attention to rear chans. Organ is in rear left during the organ solo, guitar in rear left during that solo. But other organ parts come from front right.

Just beautifully done.

I have my favorite rock albums of all-time list that got a quad treatment that did not disappoint. Machine Head is in that top ten, or top 5 of them.

My favorite “rock” quad mixes of all-time might be:

Pink Floyd - WYWH
Ten Years After - Space in Time
Black Sabbath - Paranoid
Deep Purple - Machine Head
Jethro Tull - Aqualung
ZZ Top - Tres Hombres
 
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J. PUPSTER

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The 5.1 mix is my least favorite of the three. Most of the music is in the fronts, though you do get an occasional backing vocal or discrete instrumental flourish in the rears. The center channel is primarily isolated bass guitar.

The U.K. quad mix has the rhythm section, vocals, and some guitar solos in the front channels. Guitar is in one rear speaker and keyboard/organ is in the other.

The U.S. quad mix has the drum kit spread over all four channels - the snare and kick are in the front, but the cymbals are in the rears. Guitar and keys are in the fronts this time, and in the rears you get some isolated backing vocals and solos. I think the bass guitar is totally isolated in the rears.
I believe that's what drew me to the U.K. quad mix, is the placement of instruments, which is most likely how I know I like to hear mixes (and I also agree so often with Jonathan's opinion.) But it's also great that there are various mixes available for various tastes in mix. I've been gradually taking more of the "Chucky" position on Quad (4.0) because the center channel can be mixed either too hot or just muddy up the middle when a good 4.0 mix will give you a great phantom middle.
 

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I also can forgo a center channel and often do. What is a "Chucky" position? Is this a common term?

I can't get into the UK quad only because my SACD is a rip file, and sounds dull as dishwater. Perhaps I'll grab another old SACD copy later and do a fresh rip to files and be blown away?
 

J. PUPSTER

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I also can forgo a center channel and often do. What is a "Chucky" position? Is this a common term?

I can't get into the UK quad only because my SACD is a rip file, and sounds dull as dishwater. Perhaps I'll grab another old SACD copy later and do a fresh rip to files and be blown away?
Chucky refers to Chuck (Charles) over at the Involve Surround Master threads. He's the boss over at Involve and has stated here he hates the center channel. I do like many mixes with center channel, but it's gotta be mixed just right or it will need adjustment. I've read that some folks here even wipe out the center channel entirely to get the sound they like on particular titles.

 

ssully

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Exactly. Lazy on the UK mix is shorter than stereo and 1&3. There is NO HiRez dvd-a of n.2, just sacd.
Quad Linda might have been referring to an 'unofficial' DVDA release of the UK/EMI quad mix (n.2)...... ?

AFAICT it's only been officially released on SACD and DVD-V.
 

Quad Linda

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Actually, I like the 2000 DVD-A version of Machine Head the best. I know that many would disagree.

I'm most used to the SQ LP, later on UK SACD, and after that, DVD-V in anniversary box. I've had the SQ LP since '73 when it was new and my Quad system was new, too.

Anniversary box is probably the most reasonable, albeit only a DVD-V. $90 is reasonable. I paid $60 for mine as a new release.
 

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There is lots of isolated instrumental parts in rears on US quad. And it feels solid and well thought out, and fidelity is lovely.
I should clarify, I didn't mean to imply that the U.S. quad isn't discrete. To me, it kinda sounds like a halfway compromise between the new 5.1 mix and the old U.K. quad. Still lots of discrete instrument placement (different solos thrown to the quadrants, etc, as you mentioned), but also some cross-channel reverb and bleed of instruments.

As for the fidelity - maybe I've just been unlucky, but I can't really agree with that. I'm on my third CD-4 copy (posted about it here), and I'd call it merely listenable at best. I do have the reel transfer as well and while it is much better than the vinyl, I'm still not entirely thrilled with it: it's rather hissy (maybe a 2nd gen dub?) and has far too much bass, something I've been noticing with a lot of the WEA reel transfers floating around. Glad to have it nonetheless, but for me the U.K. quad on the SACD is "the one" from both a mix and fidelity standpoint.
 

quicksrt

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Actually, I like the 2000 DVD-A version of Machine Head the best. I know that many would disagree.

I'm most used to the SQ LP, later on UK SACD, and after that, DVD-V in anniversary box. I've had the SQ LP since '73 when it was new and my Quad system was new, too.

Anniversary box is probably the most reasonable, albeit only a DVD-V. $90 is reasonable. I paid $60 for mine as a new release.
That’s totally cool!!!

You just like the mastering / fidelity of this dvd over the same material and mix on the SACD.
(Edit)
Oops read incorrectly - thought you liked the DVD-V best, no it’s US DVD-A you prefer over others.
 
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Beefalo

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I believe that's what drew me to the U.K. quad mix, is the placement of instruments, which is most likely how I know I like to hear mixes (and I also agree so often with Jonathan's opinion.) But it's also great that there are various mixes available for various tastes in mix. I've been gradually taking more of the "Chucky" position on Quad (4.0) because the center channel can be mixed either too hot or just muddy up the middle when a good 4.0 mix will give you a great phantom middle.
That’s totally cool!!!

You just like the mastering / fidelity of this dvd over the same material and mix on the SACD.
(Edit)
Oops read incorrectly - thought you liked the DVD-V best, no it’s US DVD-A you prefer over others.
I usually prefer vocals isolated in the center channel and enjoyed the 5.1 mix.
Taking advice from this forum I found a nice EMI quad. from a seller in Greece. I agree that the vocals from the phantom middle on this one sound great.
I find the vocals on the 5.1 mix lacking. Not as natural, clear & strong.
The low bass on the EMI quad. seems stronger as well.
The 5.1 mix is still quite good and I did find it pleasingly discreet.
 
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