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How to identify the Matrix Code of a Quadraphonic Stereo LP?

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Circular Vibes

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I am afraid there is no easy answer as each label and each disc has different identifying codes. Usually, but not always, a Q in the disc number is helpful. The only place I am aware that a quad disc might be in a stereo sleeve is CTI records that had an SQ in the matrix code. When stereo stampers wore out the dual inventory stampers were phased out and SQ masters used typically after that.
 

dsk3331/disc rider

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I am afraid there is no easy answer as each label and each disc has different identifying codes. Usually, but not always, a Q in the disc number is helpful. The only place I am aware that a quad disc might be in a stereo sleeve is CTI records that had an SQ in the matrix code. When stereo stampers wore out the dual inventory stampers were phased out and SQ masters used typically after that.
Thanks so much for the prompt reply and information. The record I am looking at purchasing at this time is Glenn Derringer's "Light 'N Easy . I need to make sure the record is not CD-4. My system will handle SQ and QS.
1568233301757.jpeg
 

sjcorne

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I'm looking at purchasing quad LPs and need to know how I can be sure of which Matrix code the album was recorded with; CD-4, QS, SQ
Most LPs will state which system is used somewhere on the jacket or on the label, but not always - confusion resulting from all the different formats is one the main reasons quad died after all.

Anything on Columbia Records or its subsidiary labels (Epic, Philadelphia International, Monument, CBS Masterworks, etc) is SQ-encoded. All Columbia SQ LP's feature the distinctive gold label and a note somewhere on the jacket that says "The SQ Quadraphonic Disc Is Fully Compatible And May be Played On Conventional Stereo Equipment".

Anything on RCA or WEA is CD-4 (which is not a matrix system - all four signals remain separate for the entire process). The RCA LPs usually state "Quadradisc" on the front cover, while the WEA ones either state "CD-4 Channel Discrete" or feature a distinctive "Q" logo that's hard to miss on the front cover.

ABC Records' quad releases do not explicitly state a format (they simply say "ABC Command Quadraphonic"), but to my knowledge they are all QS-encoded.

A&M is where it starts to get confusing - they started off doing Q8 tapes only, then released only one QS-encoded LP (Joan Baez's Come From The Shadows) before inexplicably switching to SQ. They finally settled on CD-4 by the end of the quad era. Usually their LPs will have a sticker on the cover that clearly states SQ or CD-4, and to my knowledge none of their SQ titles were re-released in CD-4 after the switch (in the USA, that is - if you go to Japan it's a whole other story).

Project 3 is the most confusing of them all - they started off using a matrix system called "EV-4" (The EV LPs have a note on the front cover saying "This Is The New Stereo"), then for the majority of the quad era they issued their LPs in several formats at once. Sometimes there are stickers saying which format was used, but sometimes it's difficult to identify which version of a Project 3 quad album you've got. There are several Project that can be found in SQ, QS, EV-4, and CD-4 (and Q8/Q4 tape). I think by the end of the quad era they had settled on SQ?

That record will be QS. Ovation never used CD4 on their records.
There were a few EV-4 releases from Ovation, but the majority were QS.
 
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Circular Vibes

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There were a few EV-4 releases from Ovation, but the majority were QS.
That is true. EV4 discs play well with QS though, possibly better separation than with a true EV4 decoder. From what I can find, QS puts the EV4 placement in about the right place. Ovation released enough discs with both markings to be confusing and I just settle on calling them QS. As the discography states, some were released in EV4 originally and may or may not have been re-encoded to QS. To throw a monkey wrench into it all, later Ovation LP's stated that they were encoded in Sector-4 stereo. This does not apply to the above title though.
 

dsk3331/disc rider

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MidiMagic

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Here is some help:

The encoding of Scheiber, EV, Dynaquad, Dynaco diamond, and QS are so close together that it is difficult to tell them apart. The differences are in the decoders.

Ovation encoded in EV and QS. And any records copyrighted before 1972 by anyone but Columbia were in EV or Dynaco because the others were not yet out.

How to tell a CD-4 record: Place the stylus in the music with the turntable off and then start the turntable. You will hear a swooping sound as the record speeds up, because the CD-4 carrier is audible at low speeds.

This is one reason why CD-4 died. You can't cue the record from a dead stop. And as a party DJ, I could not use them. You can't scratch-play CD-4 either.

Very few companies used different encoding systems:

Project 3 used EV, QS, SQ, and CD-4 and made test records for all 4.
Ovation used EV and QS
A&M used QS, SQ, and CD-4
Denon recorded in EV, BMX, and UD-4
EMI issued in QS, SQ, and BMX because they did not remaster foreign recordings they acquired rights to.

Many CDs that were originally matrixed are also matrixed because they were not remixed. But they are usually not labeled as such.
 
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