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Can We Talk About Upmixes?

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Sonik Wiz

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Hey Scott, maybe you could expand more on this statement of yours ( pun intended )
And even tho I am a big fan of high DR you’d be surprised how a gentle bit of multi-band compression can actually make it sound better.

I’ve noticed that although using the Pre-synth method often increases DR for MC it also seems to take some of the desired “punch” or presence out of the music, so is there a way to retain that without just upping the amplitude?
First a disclaimer of sorts. Those of us who grew up caring about audio & having the LP as our main source were reminded frequently as to it's limitations in dynamic range. Tech articles said the LP was capable of only ~60dB dynamic range & orchestral crescendos could reach 120 dB SPL. In regards to the latter, well maybe if it was an empty theater with no ventilation going. Otherwise real life background noise eats into the DR. The most direct compensation for this is to have the players actually play a bit louder on the soft parts & then you no longer have 120 dB range, eh? When we got the CD there was the opportunity to have a much increased dynamic range over LP & right about that time everyone went crazy with compression & loudness wars. So what good did this do us? I see there is a great deal of interest on QQ regard DR stats. I find that very interesting but so unlikely to tell me how a recording might sound. Fixating on this is not much useful when there are so many other things that contribute to a good (or poor) recording. So anyway I like a high DR just like you do but it's only part of the story.

You've made an astute observation that yes expanding the soundfield does increase transient dynamic range & opens up the soundfield in quite a nice way. If you increase the DR by this method you take away some of the punch that compression adds. There are several flavors of compression & the most damaging is the simple single band where one might select to amp the original +10dB and then hard limit peaks to say -.5dB. I call this the FM radio effect. But you don't have to boost input you can just limit wild peaks if you want. A great useful tool in AA 3 (I don't think Audacity has it) is the multi-band compression tool. Like it sounds it works over low, mid & high bands with complete control of all compression settings. AA 3 has some good presets & if you want to play try the Pop Star & Classical Master to get an idea of what it does.

When I do my own up mixing this is done close to the end & I have my own preset that just barely makes the effect noticeable. And yet when I A/B compare real time I can hear it adds a little bit of that punch back to the mix doing all good & no harm. I usually apply this to front chs only and then check rear chs for good balance after doing this.
 

DuncanS

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First a disclaimer of sorts. Those of us who grew up caring about audio & having the LP as our main source were reminded frequently as to it's limitations in dynamic range. Tech articles said the LP was capable of only ~60dB dynamic range & orchestral crescendos could reach 120 dB SPL. In regards to the latter, well maybe if it was an empty theater with no ventilation going. Otherwise real life background noise eats into the DR. The most direct compensation for this is to have the players actually play a bit louder on the soft parts & then you no longer have 120 dB range, eh? When we got the CD there was the opportunity to have a much increased dynamic range over LP & right about that time everyone went crazy with compression & loudness wars. So what good did this do us? I see there is a great deal of interest on QQ regard DR stats. I find that very interesting but so unlikely to tell me how a recording might sound. Fixating on this is not much useful when there are so many other things that contribute to a good (or poor) recording. So anyway I like a high DR just like you do but it's only part of the story.

You've made an astute observation that yes expanding the soundfield does increase transient dynamic range & opens up the soundfield in quite a nice way. If you increase the DR by this method you take away some of the punch that compression adds. There are several flavors of compression & the most damaging is the simple single band where one might select to amp the original +10dB and then hard limit peaks to say -.5dB. I call this the FM radio effect. But you don't have to boost input you can just limit wild peaks if you want. A great useful tool in AA 3 (I don't think Audacity has it) is the multi-band compression tool. Like it sounds it works over low, mid & high bands with complete control of all compression settings. AA 3 has some good presets & if you want to play try the Pop Star & Classical Master to get an idea of what it does.

When I do my own up mixing this is done close to the end & I have my own preset that just barely makes the effect noticeable. And yet when I A/B compare real time I can hear it adds a little bit of that punch back to the mix doing all good & no harm. I usually apply this to front chs only and then check rear chs for good balance after doing this.
A soft limit rather than hard compression then?
 

salsdali

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I have an upmix of Yes 90125 (DTS CD) (5.1 16/44.1) that really sounds great. One of my favorite Yes albums too boot.

It's limited for sure by the specs but the author really "get's" this album (the panning and attempt at discreteness is great) and it's a shame Yes doesn't call upon him to supply him with the Masters and let him create a bona fide 5.1 mix with proper specs.

I have no idea who the author is or where it came from.
 

salsdali

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just discovered another gem (due to coronacation)

Bauhaus (Hits) DTS 5.1 (16/44.1) Disc 1 and 2

Nice separation and fidelity (on some songs) for what they did with it and probably what they had to work with but obviously the overall fidelity is severly hampered by the 16/44.1

All over the place with what appears to be Full Fidelity Needle Drop 5.1 Upmixes that sound Fantasic to Harsh sourced CD rips that are thin and tinny

So far All We Ever Wanted Was Everything is an absolute standout. I doubt a production studio could surpass the fidelity.

I have no idea who the author is or where it came from but am VERY HAPPY to have some Peter Murphy/Bauhaus in 5.1
 
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salsdali

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forgot to mention I have a single song upmix of Jane's Addiction's Three Days in DTS 5.1 that sounds fantastic.

I have no idea who the author is or where it came from .

Since this album, or really any of Jane's Addiction hasn't been mixed/released in 5.1, this upmix is a testiment to what even a single song can sound like when in surround and why consumers don't demand more of this is beyond me. I guess surround is just such a niche but to me it's like night and day when even just listening to one song.
 

JonUrban

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forgot to mention I have a single song upmix of Jane's Addiction's Three Days in DTS 5.1 that sounds fantastic.

I have no idea who the author is or where it came from .

Since this album, or really any of Jane's Addiction hasn't been mixed/released in 5.1, this upmix is a testiment to what even a single song can sound like when in surround and why consumers don't demand more of this is beyond me. I guess surround is just such a niche but to me it's like night and day when even just listening to one song.
Um,


Not easy to find. And it appears there is no poll for it. What's up with that? Once I verify this I will create one.
 

salsdali

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Um,


Not easy to find. And it appears there is no poll for it. What's up with that? Once I verify this I will create one.

funny you mention that. It took 15 years but I actually scored a copy of that on ebay a month ago.

The reason I didn't include it in my post is because, IMO, and a lot of other peoples opinion, it's not really a true Jane's album. It's missing Eric, and the songs just aren't that great. The 5.1 mix is good and I'm glad I was able to finally find it but it's no Ritual de lo habitual or Nothing's Shocking. Those albums in surround would be phenomenal if the single Three Days 5.1 DTS I have is any indication.

I'm 100% positive the 5.1 of Three Days I have is fan made and not an insider with the Jane's camp because I use to follow them so much I would have heard or known about it.
 

ar surround

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I was casually listening to Todd Rundgren Something Anything this afternoon. I noted that this double album would have been a fine candidate for quad. I don’t believe it ever got a quad mix :unsure: so I wonder if anyone has any success with an upmix.
 

humprof

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I was casually listening to Todd Rundgren Something Anything this afternoon. I noted that this double album would have been a fine candidate for quad. I don’t believe it ever got a quad mix :unsure: so I wonder if anyone has any success with an upmix.
This is actually the subject of a famous controversy. Way back when, Oxford Dickie released a recording supplied by QQ member Lokkerman (but not originating with him) that claimed to be an unreleased Rhino "test master" from the DTS days, sourced "from a mixture of bounced stereo and multitracks which were purportedly all that remained of the originals." (Speculation was that the multi masters for some tracks had gone missing.) S/A also shows up on lists of planned but unreleased Warner/Rhino DVD-A's.
 

humprof

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This is actually the subject of a famous controversy. Way back when, Oxford Dickie released a recording supplied by QQ member Lokkerman (but not originating with him) that claimed to be an unreleased Rhino "test master" from the DTS days, sourced "from a mixture of bounced stereo and multitracks which were purportedly all that remained of the originals." (Speculation was that the multi masters for some tracks had gone missing.) S/A also shows up on lists of planned but unreleased Warner/Rhino DVD-A's.
That said: I completely forgot about our own @holland123 's upmix (from the MFSL Gold CD, if I'm remembering right). It's really nice.
 

salsdali

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I can't believe I forgot to mention the upmix of Pink Floyd's Echoes: The Best of Pink Floyd DTS 5.1 96/24

Some songs are almost as good as some of the official releases and of course the unreleased songs are just spectacular to have in surround.

Does anyone have any information of who did this mix?
 
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