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Anthea Gifford – A Classical Guitar Recital At Goughton Court

c6312-antheagiffordatcoughtoncourtsm

The second disc in this UHJ test.

Reissue: (D) New decode

Release: DSC61u2q-II

Source: Ambisonic/UHJ CD

Process: U2Q-II

Format: DVD-A/V  MLP/DTS/DD

About oxforddickie

A comfirmed Quadraholic i believed that the textbooks were wrong and near discrete decoding of the SQ & QS matrix systems was possiblke... and i've proven it in the 'Mythical' decoding process's.

5 responses »

  1. My comments on the Alan Parsons reissue go equally for this. Do not worry if you feel the new decodes are not as good as the old, i would have no problem in scrapping these releases.

    I just can’t decide whether it is an improvement or not! So over to you guys…….

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  2. So I have listened to the new decode of this pleasant performance today, and compared it to my previous version, which is the first decode without the “II” (I skipped one). And, first of all, I like the new one better. But.

    There is more of a difference than I would have thought, actually. The sound itself is a little better, feels a little brighter, more airy, you might say. The big difference is in the resonance, because in the old version there is none that I can hear. From the new decode, the single guitar seems to come at me from all sides. Which is more correct, I don’t know. It’s not so much a question of taste, as to what the acoustics actually were when the recording was made. If I were to guess, the complete absence of room resonance is probably not realistic. The album notes do mention “the beautiful acoustics of Coughton Hall” after all. Perhaps it would be easier to judge with more than one instrument affecting the soundspace.

    The new decode gives a fuller sound experience, but I feel, at the expense of placement. The old decode makes it easy to place the guitar in the room, the new decode makes it a bit vague. It’s not quite like the listener is moved into the instrument, but I do feel surrounded by sound in a way I simply wasn’t before. It’s only jarring upon comparison, however. So because of the cleaner sound, but also because the “dead space” surrounding the instrument didn’t seem entirely realistic, I have to prefer the new one.

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    • Thanks for the very interesting feedback, some food for thought there.

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    • This excercise is a bit like counting angels. I lean toward the older version: in that version the guitar is focused centre stage a bit forward of the front speakers with a tangible shape.
      Think of a 3D movie with an object just a little forward of the frame but showing the shape of it’s features.
      Of course one can not know for sure since we were not in the recording session. The second version puts the guitar just behind the speakers and seems to spread it the sound out. I can argue that a piano produces sounds in different parts of the soundfield, but a guitar less so.
      That said a better test would be a piece that more of an instrumental or vocal layout.

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