Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal

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Tom Bombadil

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #60 on: 6 Aug 2022, 06:25 am »
"... MFSL engineers begin with the original master tapes and meticulously cut a set of lacquers. ..."

"... every UD1S pressing serves as an immaculate replica of the lacquer sourced directly from the original master tape. ..."

"... First and foremost, we only utilize first generation original master recordings as source material for our releases. ..."

At best, this is reckless; at worst it is disingenuous.

Technically if they employed a master tape to DSD conversion, then all of the above is still true.   

Begin with a master tape (convert to DSD) and meticulously cut out a set of lacquers. 

So they would still "source" from a master tape. Then they could use the DSD copy to create multiple lacquers.

Looks to me like they were very careful to not specifically state that the lacquers were cut directly from the master tape.   They were "sourced" from the master tape. 

newzooreview

Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #61 on: 6 Aug 2022, 02:01 pm »
Yes, devious liars often choose their words carefully so that they can feign innocence when they are caught out. This behavior underscores that MFSL was well aware that they were duping their customers to sustain their exorbitant prices, profiting from a reputation now in tatters.

S Clark

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #62 on: 6 Aug 2022, 03:31 pm »
If you used a Napster MP3 to cut, you could still claim "sourced from the analogue master tape" for anything before the digital age.  There was no digital mastering when Miles Davis was recording. 

Early B.

Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #63 on: 6 Aug 2022, 03:52 pm »
Technically if they employed a master tape to DSD conversion, then all of the above is still true.   

A "half-truth" is defined as statements that deliberately and deceptively convey only part of the truth.

charmerci

Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #64 on: 6 Aug 2022, 07:13 pm »
There's a WaPo article about this. Google "Phoenix record store owner set the audiophile world on fire."

Scroof Neachy

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #65 on: 6 Aug 2022, 07:59 pm »
Frankly, I’m more surprised than appalled. Never have I once thought that the high-end audiophile industry would be less than 100% honest. That goes for companies and magazines. I believe every word written by audio journalists. I believe every spec published by designers and builders. EVERYTHING!

When I feel cynicism creeping in, I turn to an audiophile magazine to set me straight. Works every time. And when I buy an audiophile LP, I just know that it’s been mastered in the analog domain, like it should be. Why should I question the company’s integrity? I know they have the customer’s best interests in mind.

newzooreview

Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #66 on: 6 Aug 2022, 08:08 pm »
There's a WaPo article about this. Google "Phoenix record store owner set the audiophile world on fire."

The article says "…MoFi’s engineers confirmed, with a kind of awkward casualness, that Esposito was correct with his claims. The company that made its name on authenticity had been deceptive about its practices."

The article is here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/music/2022/08/05/mofi-records-analog-digital-scandal/

The article also states that the 45 rpm pressing of Bill Evans - Sunday at The Village Vanguard did not use a digital file. MoFi was using the same language to market a real analogue process and processes involving digital files.

The article also says "Marketing has been a key element of the MoFi model." More accurately "Marketing Lying has been a key element of the MoFi model."

FullRangeMan

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #67 on: 6 Aug 2022, 08:27 pm »
Years a go with import artists was common to record two masters at the same time, one analog and one digital, in MoFi's case they are using a digital master, since the original reverse laquers made from the analogue masters were worn out by the record company that released the album and even the original master tape are worn out as one might expect.

So donot need to be an Einstein to know that these big record companies under No Circumstances will lend, rent or sell the original analogue master tape, Its a matter of obvious common sense, but some people who believe everything the media says have deluded themselves into believing that these LPs used the original analogue master tapes of recorded many decades ago.

Birth of the Cool and Miles Ahead were released in 1957 it is 65 years old, but some people seem to believe that these vintage analogue master tapes still exist  :duh:

Another revealing fact is that these Golden-Ears Audiophiles have listened these records for dozens or hundreds of times and never realized that the master was digital.

This case reveals a lack of elementary knowledge of the public in question.
Digital Master yet is a master, there is no scandal.
Point to MoFi for made a good transfer job.

newzooreview

Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #68 on: 6 Aug 2022, 08:33 pm »
"There is no scandal." Give me a break.

Here is the graphic included in every MoFi Ultradisc. See any digital files there? [As noted in the accompanying text below, the "convert" is the intermediate pressing--nothing to do with digital files.]




newzooreview

Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #69 on: 6 Aug 2022, 08:35 pm »
And here is the lengthy, hyper-detailed description of the Ultradisc process that was also inserted into each Ultradisc sleeve with the above graphic. See any mention of digital files? No, because MoFi has been lying to its customers.

Quote
Ultradisc One-Step

Instead of utilizing the industry-standard three-step lacquer process, Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab's new ULTRADISC ONE-STEP (UD1S) uses only one step, bypassing two processes of generational loss. While three-step processing Is designed for optimum yield and efficiency, UD1S is created for the ultimate in sound quality. Just as Mobile Fidelity pioneered the UHQR (Ultra High-Quality Record) with JVC in the 1980s, UD1S again represents another state-of-the-art advance in the recording process. MFSL engineers begin with the original master tapes and meticulously cut a set of lacquers. These lacquers used to create a very fragile, pristine UD1S stamper called a "convert.” Delicate “converts” are then formed into the actual record stampers, producing a final product that literally and figuratively brings you closer to the music. By skipping the additional steps of pulling another positive and an additional negative, as done in the three-step process used in standard pressings, UD1S produces a final LP with the lowest noise floor possible today. The removal of the additional two steps of generational loss in the plating process reveals tremendous amounts of extra musical detail and dynamics which are otherwise lost due to the standard copying process. The exclusive nature of these very limited pressings guarantees that every UD1S pressing serves as an immaculate of the lacquer sourced directly from the original master tape. Every conceivable aspect of vinyl production is optimized to produce the most perfect record album available today.

Ultradisc One-Step: The Future of Hi-Fi

Everything begins with the meticulous cutting of a set of lacquers for a strict number of records to be pressed. After being cleaned with a proprietary chemical, the lacquers are rinsed in de-ionized water and dipped in stannous chloride, enabling pure silver to adhere to the surface. This leaves a pristine, extremely intricate silver layer. The lacquer is then mounted onto a conductive copper bar and immersed into a tank with nickel anodes 98 degrees. As electricity is applied to the silvered lacquer, the nickel begins to deposit onto the lacquer, while preserving the integrity of the grooves. The nickel-plated silvered lacquer then placed into a high-speed rotary tank at 120 degrees and spun at 88RPM to ensure the even application of a nickel layer. Once the desired thickness of .012" is achieved the disc is removed from the plating tank and the nickel convert is separated from the lacquer. At this point, the convert is formed into a single-use record stamper. This first-generation convert used to make the pinnacle of audiophile vinyl that literally and figuratively brings listeners closer to the music.

S Clark

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #70 on: 6 Aug 2022, 08:36 pm »
Years a go with import artists was common to record two masters at the same time, one analog and one digital, in MoFi's case they are using a digital master, since the original reverse laquers made from the analogue masters were worn out by the record company that released the album and even the original master tape are worn out as one might expect.

So donot need to be an Einstein to know that these big record companies under No Circumstances will lend, rent or sell the original analogue master tape, Its a matter of obvious common sense, but some people who believe everything the media says have deluded themselves into believing that these LPs used the original analogue master tapes of recorded many decades ago.

Birth of the Cool and Miles Ahead were released in 1957 it is 65 years old, but some people seem to believe that these vintage analogue master tapes still exist  :duh:

Another revealing fact is that these Golden-Ears Audiophiles have listened these records for dozens or hundreds of times and never realized that the master was digital.

This case reveals a lack of elementary knowledge of the public in question.
Digital Master yet is a master, there is no scandal.
Point to MoFi for made a good transfer job.
This may be correct, but it's mostly speculation.  Analogue Productions swears they use original master tapes in the vast majority of their releases.  And they are very open in documenting their process.  MoFi led their customers to believe the same thing, but they were intentionally misleading. 

FullRangeMan

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #71 on: 6 Aug 2022, 08:44 pm »
This may be correct, but it's mostly speculation.  Analogue Productions swears they use original master tapes in the vast majority of their releases.  And they are very open in documenting their process.  MoFi led their customers to believe the same thing, but they were intentionally misleading.
Yes I believe AP use a digital master tape or file.
I would not believe they use the original analog master tape.
If they are using a analogue master tape it could be a second gen copy.

Doublej

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #72 on: 6 Aug 2022, 08:53 pm »
Starts at about
Yes I believe AP use a digital master tape or file.
I would not believe they use the original analog master tape.
If they are using a analogue master tape it could be a second gen copy.

I don't think they use digital masters. What do you think. Starting at around 6:50.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y2LdW3zUsvg


S Clark

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #73 on: 6 Aug 2022, 09:03 pm »
Yes I believe AP use a digital master tape or file.
I would not believe they use the original analog master tape.
If they are using a analogue master tape it could be a second gen copy.
You might reconsider that statement. 
Chad Kassem has many videos showing the process at his company.  The one provided by DoubleJ is just one. 

Tom Bombadil

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Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #74 on: 7 Aug 2022, 12:50 am »
Personally I find DSD256 to be of exceptional quality.  It is quite common for recording studios to transfer analog master tapes to DSD256, as many find this to be essentially a perfect copy and preserves the tape. 

Note that many MoFi LPs which employed this DSD step were listed upon multiple best-sounding LP lists, such as by Michael Fremer.  Who knows how many other studios have done the same thing. 

Here's an article from Positive Feedback about DSD256 sound quality
https://positive-feedback.com/audio-discourse/dsd256/

charmerci

Re: Mobile Fidelity Sound Labs Scandal
« Reply #75 on: 7 Aug 2022, 02:47 am »

The article is here: https://www.washingtonpost.com/music/2022/08/05/mofi-records-analog-digital-scandal/



The reason I said to google it was because it's a pay-for site and everyone can get around it by searching for it and then clicking on the link.