Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album

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ted_b

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Topic says it all.  This is a sticky to begin compiling great Hirez (24/48+) downloaded content.

Let's use a template for standardization/consistency:
*  format (FLAC 24/96, AIFF 24/192)
*  genre (Classical, folk, rock, etc.)
*  Artist, album and/or track name
*  Download site
*  Cost (purely optional)
*  A description of why this file/album meets your "best" criteria, including a quick review of the audio qualities.

This is not a thread for debating who's is better; leave that to your own created threads.  This is a sticky for referencing top quality downloaded music only.

BPT

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #1 on: 8 Jun 2009, 07:12 pm »
A great starter is from Chesky "The World's Greatest Audiophile Vocal Recordings" in 24/96 Flac available at HDtracks for $15.98. Nice mix of well recorder vocals, some of which many already have on CD. This gives you a chance to compare the sonics and see if your $15.98 was well spent--it was.
Chris H.

ted_b

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #2 on: 8 Jun 2009, 07:22 pm »
Thanks Chris.

I really like one cut in particular, Spanish Harlem, in 24/96 FLAC on the HDTracks site.  It's a Chesky recording also, and is from Rebecca Pidgeon's The Raven album.  I'm not a fan of the whole album, but it's nice to be able to buy one song.  You can buy it off her Retrospective collection (or Chris's fave above, the Worlds Greatest Audiophile Recordings) for $2.49 in FLAC format.



I had this song in various collections, all redbook, including a Chesky test disc where it was used as an example of soundstage depth and tonality.  Well.....the 24/96 version is worlds better and is a permanent fixture on my evaluation playlist.  Just listen for her intonations, slightly Celtic, and when the percussion begins stage right.  Very realistic. 

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #3 on: 22 Jun 2009, 02:53 pm »
The Glory soundtrack has long been been an Absolute Sound recommendation and audiophile favorite on CD, so I thought I would try the hi-res 24/96 DAD from Classic Records. This absolutely smokes the CD and is an awesome demo.


zybar

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #4 on: 22 Jun 2009, 04:43 pm »
Thanks Chris.

I really like one cut in particular, Spanish Harlem, in 24/96 FLAC on the HDTracks site.  It's a Chesky recording also, and is from Rebecca Pidgeon's The Raven album.  I'm not a fan of the whole album, but it's nice to be able to buy one song.  You can buy it off her Retrospective collection (or Chris's fave above, the Worlds Greatest Audiophile Recordings) for $2.49 in FLAC format.



I had this song in various collections, all redbook, including a Chesky test disc where it was used as an example of soundstage depth and tonality.  Well.....the 24/96 version is worlds better and is a permanent fixture on my evaluation playlist.  Just listen for her intonations, slightly Celtic, and when the percussion begins stage right.  Very realistic.


Ted,

I couldn't agree with you more on the 24/96 version of Spanish Harlem.  I used this exact cut yesterday when I had a few people over to hear my system and it is definitely a fixture in the "test" or "highlight" collection.

I know I am not following the template, but here is some other hi-rez material I used yesterday when showing off the system:

Donald Fagen - Morph the Cat
Muddy Waters - Folk Singer
Natalie Merchant - Tigerlily
Robert Plant and Alison Kraus - Raising Sand
Ana Caram - Rio After Dark

George

mca

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #5 on: 22 Jun 2009, 09:27 pm »
Quote
Donald Fagen - Morph the Cat
Muddy Waters - Folk Singer
Natalie Merchant - Tigerlily
Robert Plant and Alison Kraus - Raising Sand
Ana Caram - Rio After Dark

George, what format were those in?

ted_b

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #6 on: 22 Jun 2009, 09:42 pm »
Likely converted to Wavpack, as I do.  FLAC is fine but if you transcode-on-the-fly in Squeeze Center (i.e let the server convert to PCM before sending over the net; few do this but I think it sounds better that way) FLAC has a bug in certain SC versions that doesn't allow that above 44k (redbook).  I think George was following my lead on that, but maybe not.  Otherwise it would be FLAC, which I do for all redbook anyway.

zybar

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #7 on: 22 Jun 2009, 09:54 pm »
Likely converted to Wavpack, as I do.  FLAC is fine but if you transcode-on-the-fly in Squeeze Center (i.e let the server convert to PCM before sending over the net; few do this but I think it sounds better that way) FLAC has a bug in certain SC versions that doesn't allow that above 44k (redbook).  I think George was following my lead on that, but maybe not.  Otherwise it would be FLAC, which I do for all redbook anyway.

Wavpack indeed.

George

cryoparts

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #8 on: 23 Jun 2009, 12:32 am »
The Glory soundtrack has long been been an Absolute Sound recommendation and audiophile favorite on CD, so I thought I would try the hi-res 24/96 DAD from Classic Records. This absolutely smokes the CD and is an awesome demo.



Is this available anywhere as a download, does anyone know?

Lee

ted_b

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #9 on: 23 Jun 2009, 01:00 am »
Lee, I've never seen it available as a download, but Elusive Disc has the 24/96 DAD for a great $14.99 price right now
http://www.elusivedisc.com/prodinfo.asp?number=DAD1008

cryoparts

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #10 on: 23 Jun 2009, 02:22 am »
Lee, I've never seen it available as a download, but Elusive Disc has the 24/96 DAD for a great $14.99 price right now
http://www.elusivedisc.com/prodinfo.asp?number=DAD1008

Great, I'll pick it up.  I LOVE that disc.  I have the regular CD and a vinyl copy, but not the hi-rez version. 

Wish it was available as a download, so much easier to deal with.  I'm addicted to downloading hi-rez music...

Lee

lonewolfny42

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #11 on: 23 Jun 2009, 03:18 am »
The Glory soundtrack has long been been an Absolute Sound recommendation and audiophile favorite on CD, so I thought I would try the hi-res 24/96 DAD from Classic Records. This absolutely smokes the CD and is an awesome demo.



Plus....it was an enjoyable movie !! :wink:

A great soundtrack....and one I use often to sample systems....tho, I only have the Cd.

zybar

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #12 on: 23 Jun 2009, 10:59 am »

Wish it was available as a download, so much easier to deal with.  I'm addicted to downloading hi-rez music...

Lee

Me too!

George

sleepysurf

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #13 on: 23 Jun 2009, 04:12 pm »
Is there any way to rip the DVD to FLAC?

Lee, I've never seen it available as a download, but Elusive Disc has the 24/96 DAD for a great $14.99 price right now
http://www.elusivedisc.com/prodinfo.asp?number=DAD1008

ted_b

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #14 on: 23 Jun 2009, 04:28 pm »
Is there any way to rip the DVD to FLAC?

Lee, I've never seen it available as a download, but Elusive Disc has the 24/96 DAD for a great $14.99 price right now
http://www.elusivedisc.com/prodinfo.asp?number=DAD1008

Yes, and I'm ashamed at you for not seeing the topic called "How to rip Hirez".   I even made it a sticky to find easily.  :D

just kidding about the ashamed part...... :wink:.  Here:
http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=69151.0

You rip to wav, then convert to FLAC, etc.

silverlight

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #15 on: 7 Aug 2009, 01:54 am »
This is a really nice album I downloaded today and enjoying alot
  • Format: 24/192 FLAC
  • Genre: Jazz
  • Artist:Windwerk
  • Download Site: Linn
  • Cost: $32
  • Why Like: great SQ, excellent mix of saxophone and organ, very warm analog sound, "being there" big venue acoustics
« Last Edit: 7 Aug 2009, 04:18 am by silverlight »

ted_b

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #16 on: 7 Aug 2009, 02:23 am »
Geoff,
Thanks for that heads up.  I've had several nice email exchanges with Ralf (Acouscence) and it seems he's very committed to the HiRez format, and to pushing the boundaries of both classical and jazz.  Very kewl.

jsaliga

Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #17 on: 19 Sep 2009, 06:04 pm »
Holst: The Planets - Sir Adrian Boult/Vienna State Opera Orchestra



I seriously doubt you will be able to find a finer sounding recording of this orchestral suite anywhere, regardless of format.  What is even more astonishing is that this 24/96 stereo download courtesy of High Definition Tape Transfers was sourced from a 1/4" 4-track stereo tape.  It really boggles my mind to think what the original master tapes must be like (assuming they still exist).  I have several recordings of The Planets.  Some are regarded as "must own" performances but unfortunately most of them don't sound particularly good.  And sure enough I have a few that sound great but the performances don't do very much for me.  Here is a case were a knock-your-socks-off performance meets best-of-breed sonics to produce a near-eargasmic effect on the listener.  Chances are good, unless you own a reel-to-reel tape deck and shelf full of tapes, you haven't heard analog source recordings with strings and brass that sound like this.  I have a lot of classical music recordings on a variety of formats: vinyl, SACD, DVD-A, and 1/4" 4-track stereo tape.  Very few of them are able to make me feel as though I am actually at Symphony Hall listening to a live performance.  This is one that can.  At $14 for a 24/96 download it's a steal and you won't find a better value anywhere else in home audio.  I give it the highest possible recommendation.

--Jerome

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #18 on: 23 Jan 2010, 07:05 pm »
Here is another recent favorite--Gershwin "Rhapsody in Blue" from HDTT. Even if you're not a fan of symphonic music, this is so recognizable and a great demo.




ted_b

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Re: Mini-Review: Favorite Downloaded HiRez Music file/album
« Reply #19 on: 23 Jan 2010, 07:22 pm »
Here is another recent favorite--Gershwin "Rhapsody in Blue" from HDTT. Even if you're not a fan of symphonic music, this is so recognizable and a great demo.




Chris,
I can't find that on Robert's HDTT site.  I've only seen this as an SACD, not something HDTT (public domain and tape stuff) usually carries? 
http://www.amazon.com/Gershwin-Piano-Concerto-Rhapsody-Overture/dp/B000NY164W

Edit:  Ahhh...Did you mean HD Tracks?  I see that Bruce Brown took the DSD from this SACD (above) and converted over to 24/88 there.
https://www.hdtracks.com/index.php?file=catalogdetail&valbum_code=HD093046744168