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Quad LP/Tape Poll Carpenters - The Singles (1969-1973) [SQ/CD-4/Q8]

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Rate the Quad Album of The Carpenters - THE SINGLES


  • Total voters
    23

quadtrade

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Linda perfect description why they were so good.
can you say Natalie Merchant. you made me think of one singer, i always thought she sang with marbles in her mouth.

What made the Carpenters great? Richard's arrangements, great material, and most of all, Karen's voice. It was clear as a bell. Unlike so much of the mush-mouthed stuff I listened to back then (and now), you could understand EVERY word.
 

Circular Vibes

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I just got a Japanese CD4 in the mail and I am blown away! I have the US SQ LP (worn from years of pleasure) and a Q8 which had better days. The SQ is lack lustre and has almost no separation, the Q8 wasn't much better. The CD4 is miles ahead, and what I am voting 10 on. You can hear the backing singers and horns in the back and Karen and piano in the front. So much more fidelity, like listening to a modern recording to me. Full bass and clear high end. No more Squid 2020 pumping on Karen anymore for me!
 

GOS

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Central Illinois
I just got a Japanese CD4 in the mail and I am blown away! I have the US SQ LP (worn from years of pleasure) and a Q8 which had better days. The SQ is lack lustre and has almost no separation, the Q8 wasn't much better. The CD4 is miles ahead, and what I am voting 10 on. You can hear the backing singers and horns in the back and Karen and piano in the front. So much more fidelity, like listening to a modern recording to me. Full bass and clear high end. No more Squid 2020 pumping on Karen anymore for me!
Karen Carpenter was one of only a few female singers that truly had superior talent. I mean...her voice WAS an instrument. No other way to see it as far as I'm concerned.
 

GOS

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Karen and her "instrument" are worthy of better recordings than we put up with for quad in the US and Canada.
Yes, true. Though, not quad or any kind of surround for that matter...I bought the DSD download copy of the Carpenters and that sealed it for me...her voice is astounding.
 

jaybird100

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I just got a Japanese CD4 in the mail and I am blown away! I have the US SQ LP (worn from years of pleasure) and a Q8 which had better days. The SQ is lack lustre and has almost no separation, the Q8 wasn't much better. The CD4 is miles ahead, and what I am voting 10 on. You can hear the backing singers and horns in the back and Karen and piano in the front. So much more fidelity, like listening to a modern recording to me. Full bass and clear high end. No more Squid 2020 pumping on Karen anymore for me!
There was also a great SACD, put out by A&M, that I would say would blow away the CD-4. You're right that the SQ is very lackluster. Not the best mix, and SQ wasn't the best system to encode it in. QS would have been much better for the LP. Had they released the LP in CD-4 here, the substandard vinyl would have dragged it way down. The Japanese pressing is clearly better. But the dynamics of the SACD, as well as the full discrete separation, blow away the vinyl in pretty much any format.
 

fredblue

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Ah. So it's not just my decoding or my disc. I tried two different Audition scripts, and when Karen's voice is in the left and right rear channels, it is some degrees out of phase. Summing the left and right rear channels to mono make's Karen's voice disappear to some extent, but not completely, so it's not a 180 degree phase difference. At the same time, the instruments sound fine. Do the rear channels sound this way on the Q8 and CD-4?

J. D.
Well I've tried, I've really tried.. but I've had to give up on the SQ of this one and just finish it up as best I can and move on.. the only way I could get anywhere near close to cancelling out her voice by summing any two channels to mono was taking Front Right and Rear Left (as decoded by the SQ Vinyl modded Surround Master)... and then swapping them from L to R.. and totally reassigning them into Rear Left and Rear Right respectively.. ridiculous.. and even then it still didn't turn out great, with a skew of her vocals to the right both at front and rear.. a maddening mess.. does anybody here have any idea what the heck the engineers might have done with the SQ encoding or whatever it is on this one back in the day to mess it up so spectacularly..?? Its no wonder there's no separation.. just about everything when I started looking at the individually decoded channels is out of kilter in some way :(
 

fredblue

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Well I've tried, I've really tried.. but I've had to give up on the SQ of this one and just finish it up as best I can and move on.. the only way I could get anywhere near close to cancelling out her voice by summing any two channels to mono was taking Front Right and Rear Left (as decoded by the SQ Vinyl modded Surround Master)... and then swapping them from L to R.. and totally reassigning them into Rear Left and Rear Right respectively.. ridiculous.. and even then it still didn't turn out great, with a skew of her vocals to the right both at front and rear.. a maddening mess.. does anybody here have any idea what the heck the engineers might have done with the SQ encoding or whatever it is on this one back in the day to mess it up so spectacularly..?? Its no wonder there's no separation.. just about everything when I started looking at the individually decoded channels is out of kilter in some way :(
This pic (with channel spaghetti diagram in the mixing console window to the right of the pic) should help explain somewhat.. well, what I'm on about.. this is one ballsed up SQ LP..! :D

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 19.14.16.jpg

(3 and 4 are empty btw.. I did decode the record into 5.1 with faux Centre and Sub info synthesised and the SM did an admirable job but there's audible pumping in the extracted centre vocals, I guess the little box was having a hard time trying to sift Karen out from the SQ soup.. so I ditched them both and kept it as 4-channel... four channels of nonsense..!!)
 

Jtejada

New member
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Aug 27, 2019
Messages
1
Location
Ohio
The mix of “Top of the World” with the vocal track of the original “A Song For You” lp layered over the instrumental track of the single retake the best track on this album. It feels like Karen is right in the room with you.
 

PodCat

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Well, back in the day(let's say 1970-73, the duo's peak period), REAL MEN seemed to be into: the Stones, Black Sabbath, Mountain
I listened to Stones, Sabbath, and Carpenters ... back then.
I’ve always had very narrow taste in music, as in whiskey: I only like the good stuff.

And I hadn’t even heard any of that in quad until 1977.
 

PodCat

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The mix of “Top of the World” with the vocal track of the original “A Song For You” lp layered over the instrumental track of the single retake the best track on this album. It feels like Karen is right in the room with you.
Agreed ... it is by far the best track.

As intended: this remixed track led sales as the “new hit”, though it was first released in 1972 on A Song For You.
That version is not nearly as good and certainly could never have hit #1. As often happens, big hits require a rethink of the original album track. Three Dog Night often remixed and rerecorded parts in their single versions, as did other 70’s artists. But Top of the World is a most dramatic example of turning an eh track into a worldwide smash in late 1973.

I generally prefer the excellent sonics and mix of the SACD version, but this one track might be an exception.
Hearing the master of the quad mix via DV would probably give it a boost.

BTW - has anyone actually heard the CD-4 or the Jap QR?
I’d sure like a conversion of the latter.
 

fredblue

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Agreed ... it is by far the best track.

As intended: this remixed track led sales as the “new hit”, though it was first released in 1972 on A Song For You.
That version is not nearly as good and certainly could never have hit #1. As often happens, big hits require a rethink of the original album track. Three Dog Night often remixed and rerecorded parts in their single versions, as did other 70’s artists. But Top of the World is a most dramatic example of turning an eh track into a worldwide smash in late 1973.

I generally prefer the excellent sonics and mix of the SACD version, but this one track might be an exception.
Hearing the master of the quad mix via DV would probably give it a boost.

BTW - has anyone actually heard the CD-4 or the Jap QR?
I’d sure like a conversion of the latter.
yes i have the CD-4, its excellent
 

sjcorne

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BTW - has anyone actually heard the CD-4 or the Jap QR?
I’d sure like a conversion of the latter.
yes i have the CD-4, its excellent
Both Carpenters Japan CD-4's are worth seeking out - definitely quite a bit better than their U.S. SQ counterparts. As for reels, Now & Then definitely exists (and it's amazing), but I've never seen The Singles.
 
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