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Enoch Light format?

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gvl_guy

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I've tried to search these forums for the answers to my questions, but I didn't really come up with an answer.
I have 2 Enoch Light albums that I have no idea which matrix format they are in. They both show just "Quadraphonic/4 Channel" on the cover.
1) One is the GTE/Sylvania branded (on Project 3 records) The Brass Menagerie 1974. (Not 1973, but '74 - which has the same line up of songs as the '73. ??) The album number on the sleeve and label ends with a "QD" and no mention of format. Nothing on Discogs either about the format. I'm assuming this one is EV-4, which I can play through my QS decoder, but wanted to see if anyone had any better intel.
2) The second is Enoch Light and the Light Brigade, Charge! The album number on the cover ends in "QD" again, but the number on the label ends in "SQ." I'm assuming this is SQ encoded, but again, no info about it on the packaging or on Discogs.
Any insight would be greatly helpful. Thank you!
 

atrocity

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2) The second is Enoch Light and the Light Brigade, Charge! The album number on the cover ends in "QD" again, but the number on the label ends in "SQ." I'm assuming this is SQ encoded, but again, no info about it on the packaging or on Discogs.
Any insight would be greatly helpful. Thank you!
Maybe a weird question, but when you look at the grooves do they look like SQ? Seems like a lot of SQ records just look different but I can't put my finger on why.
 

sjcorne

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1) One is the GTE/Sylvania branded (on Project 3 records) The Brass Menagerie 1974. (Not 1973, but '74 - which has the same line up of songs as the '73. ??) The album number on the sleeve and label ends with a "QD" and no mention of format. Nothing on Discogs either about the format. I'm assuming this one is EV-4, which I can play through my QS decoder, but wanted to see if anyone had any better intel.
The EV-encoded titles usually have a sticker on the front proclaiming "this is the new stereo". If the catalog # ends in "QD" and there's no sticker proclaiming EV, then it's probably QS-encoded.

P3-EV.jpg


2) The second is Enoch Light and the Light Brigade, Charge! The album number on the cover ends in "QD" again, but the number on the label ends in "SQ." I'm assuming this is SQ encoded, but again, no info about it on the packaging or on Discogs.
The "SQ" designation does mean SQ-encoded as you suggest.

The Project 3 Discography is very handy in determining how many different versions there are of each album. Some P3 titles are available in EV, QS, SQ, and CD-4!
 

quadsearcher

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Seems I remember a post I saw here long ago that had a key to the letters/numbers in the run-out groove referenced to format.
 

ArmyOfQuad

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This is a question I've spent much time pondering, but I don't know that I ever came to a full conclusion.

When it comes to Project 3, I think generally the SQ and CD4 are easy enough to identify. So the real mystery lies in telling the difference between QS and EV4 releases. They seem to have used the same QD designation on the record labels for both, and identified the albums with stickers that may be long gone. I never really identified a way to tell them apart. I picked up a few cheap records with labels still on the covers to do a little comparing and analyzing, but that was something that I eventually lost interest in spending more money on.
 

jaybird100

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I've tried to search these forums for the answers to my questions, but I didn't really come up with an answer.
I have 2 Enoch Light albums that I have no idea which matrix format they are in. They both show just "Quadraphonic/4 Channel" on the cover.
1) One is the GTE/Sylvania branded (on Project 3 records) The Brass Menagerie 1974. (Not 1973, but '74 - which has the same line up of songs as the '73. ??) The album number on the sleeve and label ends with a "QD" and no mention of format. Nothing on Discogs either about the format. I'm assuming this one is EV-4, which I can play through my QS decoder, but wanted to see if anyone had any better intel.
2) The second is Enoch Light and the Light Brigade, Charge! The album number on the cover ends in "QD" again, but the number on the label ends in "SQ." I'm assuming this is SQ encoded, but again, no info about it on the packaging or on Discogs.
Any insight would be greatly helpful. Thank you!
Check the record number, usually "PRxxxx" and a suffix. The clue is there. "QD" is QS-encoded. "SQ" and "CD-4" are self-explanatory. You can certainly play EV-4 records through a QS decoder with fine results. The "Charge" album is QS.
 

gvl_guy

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Check the record number, usually "PRxxxx" and a suffix. The clue is there. "QD" is QS-encoded. "SQ" and "CD-4" are self-explanatory. You can certainly play EV-4 records through a QS decoder with fine results. The "Charge" album is QS.
Actually, the Charge! album number is PR 5073 SQ on the label.

Could Project 3 be THE record label that brought down "quad"? 😂 Talk about confusing!
 

jaybird100

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Actually, the Charge! album number is PR 5073 SQ on the label.

Could Project 3 be THE record label that brought down "quad"? 😂 Talk about confusing!
I'd say they wanted to appeal to all quad lovers, and they released several titles in all three formats. Usually, the matrixed versions were a different mix from the discrete. As for your record, yes, it's SQ. If you're the proud owner of a Surround Master, it really matters very little. That little box can get the best from any matrixed record.
 

gvl_guy

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I'd say they wanted to appeal to all quad lovers, and they released several titles in all three formats. Usually, the matrixed versions were a different mix from the discrete. As for your record, yes, it's SQ. If you're the proud owner of a Surround Master, it really matters very little. That little box can get the best from any matrixed record.
I have a Sansui 7001. Not nearly as good as the surround master (so I'm told) but I'm pretty happy with the matrix decoders.
 

MidiMagic

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Actually, the Charge! album number is PR 5073 SQ on the label.

Could Project 3 be THE record label that brought down "quad"? 😂 Talk about confusing!
Actually, Dolby Surround is what blew all of the old quad formats out of the water.

It works so much better than any of the old formats. And for at least 10 years, it was a de-facto standard.
 

jaybird100

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Actually, Dolby Surround is what blew all of the old quad formats out of the water.

It works so much better than any of the old formats. And for at least 10 years, it was a de-facto standard.
Gotta disagree with you there, Midi! Dolby Surround, in its most basic form (we are comparing the matrix version to SQ and QS, right?) provided a mono rear signal, spread across two speakers. Pro Logic II put the separation back between the rear speakers. Pro Logic II is compatible with QS, but it all comes down to the decoders. The Vario-Matrix QS decoder works well with QS and PL II, but not with SQ. I"ve also never seen a record released with PL II encoding, although there are a number of Dolby Surround CD's. Dolby Surround hung in there until Dolby Digital, and DTS, entered the fold. But let's remember that SQ, QS, and EV-4 predated Dolby Surround, and were intended for music. Dolby Surround was initially a movie surround format. Remember the mono rears, and the 7 kHz brick wall in the rears? It also initially had no center channel. That came with PL II.
 

gvl_guy

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One standard LP quadraphonic system would have solved it all. Doesn't even matter which one it was. Technology would have caught up and made the format work better - no matter which one. But with Columbia going with their own SQ and Warner labels going with CD-4, it was dead in the water. Way too confusing for the public. Project 3 really added to that confusion - good thing they weren't a popular record label.

Would have also been nice if the record companies would have released all albums in quad/stereo compatible, too. But they never quite backed it all the way.
 

jaybird100

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One standard LP quadraphonic system would have solved it all. Doesn't even matter which one it was. Technology would have caught up and made the format work better - no matter which one. But with Columbia going with their own SQ and Warner labels going with CD-4, it was dead in the water. Way too confusing for the public. Project 3 really added to that confusion - good thing they weren't a popular record label.

Would have also been nice if the record companies would have released all albums in quad/stereo compatible, too. But they never quite backed it all the way.
I fully agree with you about one format being better, but when you have three different systems, the proponents of eadh system claiming theirs was best, it isn't all that easy. That's the nature of the marketplace. Had there been a decoder back then with the capabilities of the Surround Master, the point would have been moot. CD-4 was far too finicky to be widely accepted, although, by now, the technology would have improved on the demodulators. The fragile carriers on the records would have still killed that system. SQ maximized separation left to right, but only 3dB front to rear. Without a sophisticated decoder, the quad effect was minimal. QS emphasized separation to the diagonals, keeping the separation between adjacent speakers uniform. It could deliver a more cohesive surround effect, even without logic assist. That's why they called it a Regular Matrix. The Warner Brothers group of labels almost went with QS, but when Brad Miller, of Mobile Fidelity and Mystic Moods fame, threatened to pull his albums from WB if they went with a matrix. They caved, and went with CD-4. Irony is, Miller pulled his titles anyway to start his own label, Soundbird.

I've been a collector of quad records since the beginning, and having a good way to hear them is important to me. I mostly avoid buying used CD-4 records; you don't know what they were played on by the previous owner, and if the carriers are still intact. You can't tell just by looking at the record. Since I concentrate on matrixed records, the SM helps me get the best from them. (I'm starting to sound like a commercial for the thing!) It also makes stereo records sound great. Your 7001 is a great receiver; enjoy it!
 

gvl_guy

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I've been a collector of quad records since the beginning, and having a good way to hear them is important to me. I mostly avoid buying used CD-4 records; you don't know what they were played on by the previous owner, and if the carriers are still intact. You can't tell just by looking at the record. Since I concentrate on matrixed records, the SM helps me get the best from them. (I'm starting to sound like a commercial for the thing!) It also makes stereo records sound great. Your 7001 is a great receiver; enjoy it!
I know what you mean about used CD-4 albums. I bought a Henry Mancini that looked absolutely beautiful and it sucks in quad. The carrier is toast.
 

MidiMagic

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Note that QS, Stereo-4, Dynaquad, and Dolby Surround all produce nearly the same recordings (the only differences are slight side displacements forward or backward)

Note that the QS, Stereo-4, Dynaquad, Dynaco diamond, Dolby Surround, Pro Logic, and Pro Logic II all produce nearly the same sound images with any of the above recordings. The only difference is how many speakers and where they are placed (and the Dolby Surround limited back channel).

The important point is that the encodings of these systems are so close to each other that I can't tell one encoding from another (among the encodings listed above) by listening.
 

sjcorne

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When it comes to Project 3, I think generally the SQ and CD4 are easy enough to identify. So the real mystery lies in telling the difference between QS and EV4 releases. They seem to have used the same QD designation on the record labels for both, and identified the albums with stickers that may be long gone. I never really identified a way to tell them apart. I picked up a few cheap records with labels still on the covers to do a little comparing and analyzing, but that was something that I eventually lost interest in spending more money on.
I have some interesting findings on this front. I finally managed to acquire what appears to be a genuine QS pressing of Permissive Polyphonics, complete with the blue sticker (for some reason this is weirdly difficult to obtain - another bidder drove the price way higher than I wanted to go). However, after spending some time A/B’ing it with my other quad copies of this album (EV-4 LP, CD-4 LP, Quad Reel), I’m not convinced that it’s QS at all - I think it’s actually the EV-4 LP simply re-packaged as QS.

Permissive EV4 Cover.jpg
Permissive EV4 Label.jpg
Permissive QS Cover.jpg
Permissive QS Label.jpg
Permissive CD-4 Cover.jpg
Permissive CD-4 Label.jpg


Here’s screen-grabs of the first track, “Marrakesh Express”. EV-4 on the left, QS on the right. Both were decoded using the Surround Master’s “Involve” mode. I was originally planning to use my ElectroVoice EVX-4 to decode the EV pressing, but the SM gets much more separation out of it.

EV Waveform.jpg
QS Waveform.jpg


They’re pretty much identical in terms of channel separation. The only real difference I could detect between the two is that the sound quality of the QS pressing is far superior. The EV-4 pressing appears to be missing quite a bit of top end by comparison. Samples of the first 30 seconds from each source are posted below:

EV-4 LP - First 30 Seconds
QS LP - First 30 Seconds

I also have the CD-4 LP and Quad Reel of Permissive Polyphonics, so I recorded that same track off those two sources to see how they fared. The reel is on the left, CD-4 LP on the right.

QR Waveform.jpg
CD-4 Waveform.jpg


What’s immediately evident here is that this is not the same quad mix as the EV-4/QS version. This 'alternate' mix is quite a bit more active and adventurous. On this version, the vocals suddenly jump to the left rear channel at around 2:30. This does not happen on the EV-4 and QS LPs. Another interesting difference is on the EV-4/QS mix, the synthesizer blasts at around 0:08 and 0:20 last slightly longer and pan/pulsate much faster.

To make things even more complicated, “Marrakesh Express” can also be found in quad on the Popular Science Test Record (PR401) and the 4-Channel Stereo sampler (PR-D700), both of which received multiple releases in different quad vinyl formats. In my collection, I happen to have all three versions of Popular Science (SQ, QS, CD-4) and the SQ pressing of 4-Channel Stereo. So I recorded in that same track off of all those sources into the same ProTools session, wondering whether which quad mix I’d get.

Top Left = Popular Science QS (Involve Decode)
Top Right = Popular Science CD-4
Bottom Left = Popular Science SQ (Involve SQ Decode)
Bottom Right = 4-Channel Stereo SQ (Involve SQ Decode)

QS Popular Science Waveform.jpg
CD-4 Popular Science Waveform.jpg
SQ Popular Science Waveform.jpg
SQ 4-Ch Stereo Waveform.jpg


As it turns out, they all match the alternate, more adventurous mix found on the CD-4 and reel of Permissive Polyphonics. The QS decode from Popular Science is remarkably similar to the discrete reel - a testament to how good the SM's QS decoding ability is.

I guess the question going forward is: for all the Project 3 titles that were issued in EV-4 and QS, are any of them genuine QS? Or are they just re-packaged EV-4?
 

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