HiRez Poll Steely Dan - GAUCHO [DVD-A/SACD]

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Rate the DVD-A/SACD of Steely Dan - GAUCHO


  • Total voters
    204

Quad Linda

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yc5zegdilc9nws.jpg
 

elroy

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A 10. Not my all-time favorite Steely Dan disc (tie between Aja and Katy Lied), but several songs that are among their best and everything on this DVD-A sounds great in 5.1.
 

conttador

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This is an amazing disc. Brasses sound crystal clear as do back up vocals. Known for their perfectionism, on this specific release you can see it at it's best!
 

baphomet

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Hooray for Captain Spaulding, the African explorer! Did someone call me schnorer?

[shakes head]

I just got the SACD in the mail, at a pretty good price! I can't wait to give it a test spin tonight....

I've been doing 'album listening parties' with some friends for various surround versions, this will be next in the line up ...double feature with Avalon
 

leevitalone1

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[shakes head]

I just got the SACD in the mail, at a pretty good price! I can't wait to give it a test spin tonight....

I've been doing 'album listening parties' with some friends for various surround versions, this will be next in the line up ...double feature with Avalon

Great album! Love the whole thing!
 

bmoura

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[shakes head]

I just got the SACD in the mail, at a pretty good price! I can't wait to give it a test spin tonight....

I've been doing 'album listening parties' with some friends for various surround versions, this will be next in the line up ...double feature with Avalon

That should be quite a listening party !
 

baphomet

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Haven't done it yet...shooting for the coming weekend....of course I previewed the disc already and was very very happy about it :)
 

steelydave

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This is one of my favourite albums, and one of my favourite 5.1 mixes, so I recently picked up the DVD-A to do some technical comparisons. I was really hoping that it would turn out to be like the Elton John 'GBYBR' Blu-Ray, where they went back to the PCM masters and not like the Beck 'Sea Change' Blu-Ray (and DVD-A) which were just transcoded versions of the SACD/DSD masters.

Unfortunately, I came away disappointed. I don't want to use too much hyperbole, but this disc is a bit of a mess. It seems you can't add photos to poll section threads, but I did spectral analysis of the LFE track (because it's the easiest to see the ultrasonic noise generated by DSD since there's no legitimate high frequency information in the LFE track) and it's there, starting at around 30k, and then ending around 40k where it looks like it's been low-pass filtered. This is especially disappointing since I read an interview with Elliot Scheiner around the time this disc came out in which he said he outputted his 5.1 mix to both DSD and PCM, as well as 2" analog tape so that it would be 'future proof' for any new formats that come down the pipe. It appears that Universal had other ideas and just used the SACD master as the source for the 5.1 mix.

The stereo mix fares even worse here though. In the spectral analysis, the musical frequency response cuts off sharply right around 22kHz and then the ultrasonic noise starts at 30kHz. This leads me to believe that they used the old 44.1kHz/16bit PCM CD master, upsampled it to DSD for the SACD, and then transcoded it back to 24/96 PCM for the DVD-A. There's really no excuse for such a muddy lineage on a release like this. To add insult to injury, the dynamic range of the stereo mix on the DVD-A has had the life crushed out of it, even in comparison to the CD from which it was (presumably) sourced. The DR value for the DVD-A is 9, in comparison to the 2000 CD remaster, which is a 12. The original 1980 vinyl, the 1984 original CD issue, and 2010 Japanese SHM-SACD are all DR 14.

In my opinion, the best digital sources for this album are the 2003 Universal SACD for the 5.1 mix, and the 2010 Japanese SHM-SACD for the stereo mix. It seems like all the high resolution PCM of this album is sourced from the SACD.
 

steelydave

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Spectral plot of the LFE track on the 5.1 mix of 'Babylon Sisters' showing LFE content (bottom) and ultrasonic noise (top)
Babylon-Sisters-5.1-LFE---Spectral.jpg

Spectral plot of the stereo mix showing the cutoff of musical info at 22kHz and the start of ultrasonic noise at 30kHz
Babylon-Sisters-PCM-Stereo---Spectral.jpg
 

ssully

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in your face
And yet so many here gave it big thumbs up. Hint: they aren't listening to the stereo remaster.
 

IMachine

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This is one of my favourite albums, and one of my favourite 5.1 mixes, so I recently picked up the DVD-A to do some technical comparisons. I was really hoping that it would turn out to be like the Elton John 'GBYBR' Blu-Ray, where they went back to the PCM masters and not like the Beck 'Sea Change' Blu-Ray (and DVD-A) which were just transcoded versions of the SACD/DSD masters.

Unfortunately, I came away disappointed. I don't want to use too much hyperbole, but this disc is a bit of a mess. It seems you can't add photos to poll section threads, but I did spectral analysis of the LFE track (because it's the easiest to see the ultrasonic noise generated by DSD since there's no legitimate high frequency information in the LFE track) and it's there, starting at around 30k, and then ending around 40k where it looks like it's been low-pass filtered. This is especially disappointing since I read an interview with Elliot Scheiner around the time this disc came out in which he said he outputted his 5.1 mix to both DSD and PCM, as well as 2" analog tape so that it would be 'future proof' for any new formats that come down the pipe. It appears that Universal had other ideas and just used the SACD master as the source for the 5.1 mix.

The stereo mix fares even worse here though. In the spectral analysis, the musical frequency response cuts off sharply right around 22kHz and then the ultrasonic noise starts at 30kHz. This leads me to believe that they used the old 44.1kHz/16bit PCM CD master, upsampled it to DSD for the SACD, and then transcoded it back to 24/96 PCM for the DVD-A. There's really no excuse for such a muddy lineage on a release like this. To add insult to injury, the dynamic range of the stereo mix on the DVD-A has had the life crushed out of it, even in comparison to the CD from which it was (presumably) sourced. The DR value for the DVD-A is 9, in comparison to the 2000 CD remaster, which is a 12. The original 1980 vinyl, the 1984 original CD issue, and 2010 Japanese SHM-SACD are all DR 14.

In my opinion, the best digital sources for this album are the 2003 Universal SACD for the 5.1 mix, and the 2010 Japanese SHM-SACD for the stereo mix. It seems like all the high resolution PCM of this album is sourced from the SACD.

Sometimes I don't need an analysis....if it sounds superb....
Will your listening to this disc change now after you made the spectral analysis? :)
 

fredblue

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Mildly disappointing set of results.. but thanks for taking the time and trouble steelydave (y) I guess I succumbed to the placebo effect when I figured the 5.1 on the DVD-A sounded better than the SACD.. :eek:

Hopeful if UMe ever get around to reissuing this on BD-A they utilise Scheiner's PCM files instead.. 5.1 fingers crossed! :D

Still, I agree with IMachine, it sounds superb (and mix is wonderful too) definitely right up there with the best of the best surround music mixes imho.
 

fredblue

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Surprised to see the lovely Linda give it "7".. :yikes

..and I 'only' gave it a "9" when I voted a few years back.. today I think I'd maybe give it a "10"..
 
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