AudioCircle

Music and Media => The Music Circle => Topic started by: seadogs1 on 9 Aug 2016, 02:04 pm

Title: Music to test speakers
Post by: seadogs1 on 9 Aug 2016, 02:04 pm
Specifically what music do you use to test loudspeakers?
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: chrisc on 9 Aug 2016, 03:24 pm
Female voice to determine the accuracy and absence of sibilance
Large orchestral to determine dynamic range
String quartet to listen for imagery and realism

No rock or processed music for me thanks.  I use hi-res digital files 96khz/24 bit and better

A good female voice recording is Carol Kid - Stormy Weather
Beethoven Symphony no 7, second movement with Weiner Phiharmonic and Carlos Kleiber (a DGG recording)
String quartets, there are many - Bach, the Art of the Fugue; Brahms, string quartet no 1 in C with Candida Thompson and the Amsterdam Sinfonetta
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: seadogs1 on 9 Aug 2016, 07:24 pm
Thanks! I'll look into those suggestions.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: drphoto on 9 Aug 2016, 10:57 pm
Id say, listen to what you like at home. Hell if you like metal, then play that.   :D
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: charmerci on 9 Aug 2016, 11:07 pm
Dave Grusin - Discovered Again. Mainstream jazz recorded live in studio. Drums and percussion, bass, guitar and piano. Soundstage is incredible as well as the sound.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: HsvHeelFan on 10 Aug 2016, 12:58 am
From my perspective, the most important for "test" material is for it to be something that you KNOW. 

Something that you've listened too hundreds of times.

For me, it's The Alan Parsons Project I Robot  (1st 4 tracks) and the Telarc recording of the Cleveland Orchestra performing Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition. (the Ravel arrangement - not the other one).

Dave Grusin's "Gershwin" album is also very well recorded.

For vocals,  I use Barbara Streisand's "The Broadway Album",  Holly Cole's Best of album and Louis Armstrong/Ella Fitzgerald Gershwin album.

Here's a thread from the Salk Forum of recommended demo material:

http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=63936.1120 (http://www.audiocircle.com/index.php?topic=63936.1120)


HsvHeelFan
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: drphoto on 10 Aug 2016, 01:10 am
Yup SVS is right, something that you know by heart is good. More importantly play something that you like. Don't go all 'audiophile' and play some wonderfully recorded jazz bit you'd never listen to. Play what you wanna hear.

Believe me, I've seen too many people make this mistake. Myself included.  :oops:
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: richidoo on 10 Aug 2016, 04:09 am
I start with Clifford Brown Max Roach, from 1954 in mono. Having played trumpet for a long time and having listened to this music for decades on many different systems I know how it should sound and feel, so that tells me a lot.

Then I'll play some pop music to see if it remains musical playing bad sound tune. I like Rhianna's Only Girl in the World because it also has big scale and drama, and her amazing voice. Can I enjoy the song, or do I just think about the bad sound.

For absolute tone, dynamic presence, openness and air, stereo imaging, naturalness, all the pretty audiophile stuff I'll play Respighi's "Three Botticelli Pictures," 2nd movement, L'Adoration dei Magi.  Orpheus Chamber Orchestra is a small string, woodwind and percussion chamber group, perfectly recorded, awesome acoustic, awesome performance on a DG record I think. Flutes, double reeds, triangle, wicked!

When I'm alone with big speakers I play Shostakovich 5th, Kreizberg on Pentatone finale or Prokofiev 5th Atlanta on Telarc. They pretty much tell the tale about scale and power. If I'm with polite company Beethoven 5th 1st or 3rd movements, Vanska on BIS.

Other favorite audition tracks are Julia Fischer Bach solo violin, same objective as the trumpet above, but better recording, stereo. Maria Schneider's Concert in the Garden has an accordion solo that shows off the mid/tweeter xo and then it crescendos to mighty full range climax, combines the function of Respighi and big orchestral, but it's jazz which other listeners usually prefer to classical at a show, etc. For vocals I use Aimee Mann ballads, her voice is very beautiful to me, low and lispy, usually very well recorded.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Mark Korda on 10 Aug 2016, 03:27 pm
Hi , here are my speaker testers.
   For midrange the most involving cd or record I like is the song South City Midnight  Lady by the Doobie Brothers. Listen to the strumming of the acoustic guitar and you'll swear your there. For bass testing I have a cd soundtrack that came out in 1951 , The Day the Earth Stood Still. It was rerecorded in 2002 from a superb Bernard Hermann original sound track that I have. Better than the original master recording on Mobile Fidelity's Ultradisc 2. There is a track called Gort. When playing the arrival of Gort the 10 foot robot in my last apartment thru my sub woofer 2 different neighbors came running out the hall to see if the building was ok.
    Treble. Burt Young from Rocky played Uncle Joe Shannon, a down and out trumpet player. Maynard Ferguson plays the trumpet and hits notes that can shatter glass. The movie came out in about 77 and it's hard to find a cd. The album is one of my favorites.....Mark Korda.....Sea Dog's fan.....Portland Maine
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: K.F. on 12 Oct 2016, 05:54 pm
This excellent list and description of why each album has been chosen is from the Whats Best Forum.
 
Quote from: APP;316446
My good friend and fellow audiophile Gerald k and I have made a compilation of music files which we feel are perfect for testing new equipment.
We wanted to use music that we not only enjoy listening to but which also has the abillity to reveal flaws in the signal chain.
I listen mostly on Headphones (Sennheiser/ Audeze/ Audio Technica) while Gerald listen only on speakers (Tad, Kharma/Linn/Naim).
We have spend many an evening and several bottles of Cotes du Rhone wines arguing and eventually agreeing on this list of audio equipment test music.
This is what we came up with, please feel free to comment or post alternatives, if possible with a link as to where to purchase the music that you feel is ideal for this purpose.
We also looked for reviews that we felt agreed with what we see in the recordings.

Sound stage and definition

1. Carmen Gomes inc; '' I'm on fire'' from Thousand Shades of Blue

(http://www.soundliaison.com/images/TSOB200v4-130-10-10-75.png)

http://www.soundliaison.com/ (http://www.soundliaison.com/)
Placement is perfect on this young audiophile classic as well as the near perfect natural recording of the voice, but the real test for audio equipment when listening to this recording is it's ability to separate the kickdrum from the upright bass.
The two instruments are playing the same pattern. On less than optimum equipment it might be difficult to separate the two, but with good setup you clearly hear the upright at 2.00 and the kick dead center with a nice decay that one generally do not hear on commercial recordings.
There are lots of speakers and headphones with ''extended lows'' but low with definition is a whole different ballgame.

HIFI;

2 Alban berg Quartet; Bartok String Quartet no.1 in a minor 1th movement. (LP,EMI)
(http://www.whatsbestforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=20357&d=1431600115)
in the beginning of this movement the 4 instruments all play mainly in the same middle and upper register. Despite all that mid and high information the music should not sound harsh.
This recording has the same perfect sound stage as the Carmen Gomes recording.
We believe that this kind of sound stage with such a sense of depth and realistic placement is only attainable when you are recording the musicians in one room at the same time.
Amazon

Intelligible representation

3. Frank Sinatra; ''What's New'' from Only the Lonely.
Frank is maybe a bit too prominent represented but one should still be able to notice all the different lines played by the various instruments in this incredible Nelson Riddle arrangement.
4. Me'Shell Ndegéocello; ''Levictus:Faggot'' from Peace beyond Passion.
Here we have the opposite, the voice is a bit too soft in this optimum funk piece yet you should still be able to hear every word.

(http://www.whatsbestforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=20355&d=1431600052)(http://www.whatsbestforum.com/attachment.php?attachmentid=20356&d=1431600052)
easily obtainable;http://www.amazon.com/ (http://www.amazon.com/)

Depth and Space

When talking about depth and space we had to include a couple of Reference Recordings tracks. This label has allways done justice to it's name and consistently produced recordings of very high quality.

5. The Concord Chamber Music Society;''Danza del Soul'' from Brubeck and Gandolfi works.
(http://cps-static.rovicorp.com/3/JPG_400/MI0003/185/MI0003185035.jpg?partner=allrovi.com)

6. Doug Macleod '' the Night of the Devils Road'' from There's a Time
(http://cdn2.songlyricscom.netdna-cdn.com/album_covers/227/doug-macleod-there-s-a-time/doug-macleod-126452-there-s-a-time.jpg)



Here you have two completely different pieces of music, one by The Concord Chamber Music Society and one by blues legend Doug Macleod accompanied only by guitar and kick drum. But the depth and the space of these two recordings is simply outstanding.

enjoy the music;
Audiophelia;
http://referencerecordings.com/ (http://referencerecordings.com/)

7. Andre Heuvelman; ''Oblivion'' from After Silence
8. Joni Mitchell; ''Comes Love'' from Both Sides Now
Andre Heuvelman's rendition of Astor Piazzolla's master piece have a great sense of depth. Every instrument sounds rich and full with a gorgeus natural decay. On lesser equipment the sound of each instrument can become a bit of a blur while on good equipment the sound of each instrument should be clearly defined with a clear sense of the room this recording have been recorded in.
Same goes for Joni's wonderful standards collection, it is a big hall you are listening to.

(http://www.soundliaison.com/images/Andre200v7.png)

Sound Stage on Sound Liaison recordings;

http://www.soundliaison.com/ (http://www.soundliaison.com/)

(http://www.computeraudiophile.com/attachments/f8-general-forum/18173d1430009244-music-testing-audio-equipment-both-sides-now_cover_s200.jpg)

Both Sides Now won a
Quote
Grammy Award voor Best Traditional Pop Vocal Album (http://"https://www.google.nl/search?safe=off&espv=2&biw=1366&bih=643&q=grammy+award+voor+best+traditional+pop+vocal+album&stick=H4sIAAAAAAAAAGOovnz8BQMDgwUHnxCXfq6-gWFGWZFpuRIniG1ckm1WpSWbnWyln1ieWJQCIePLM_PyUouswJziZWZvjn7POuX9-alow4pTXCIXGbbpAwDf-vkaVQAAAA&sa=X&ei=Guw7VbjkN8PpaIjRgNgC&ved=0CJIBEJsTKAEwDw") and a Juno Award voor Vocal jazz album of the year (http://"https://www.google.nl/search?safe=off&espv=2&biw=1366&bih=643&q=juno+award+voor+vocal+jazz+album+of+the+year&stick=H4sIAAAAAAAAAGOovnz8BQMDgwUHnxCXfq6-gWFGWZFpuRIniJ2UkV5cpCWbnWyln1ieWJQCIePLM_PyUouswJzizUUe735dXZLDxLvm7pll899OM3SJAQB6vIH3VQAAAA&sa=X&ei=Guw7VbjkN8PpaIjRgNgC&ved=0CJMBEJsTKAIwDw")
Quote

Separation

9. Miles Davis; ''Stella by Starlight'' from the Complete 1964 Concert
10. John Scofield; ''Just Don't Wan't to be Lonely'' from Uberjam Deux

we use these recordings to check for spill between left and right channel.
The Miles recording was done on a 3 track tape machine and therefore there is this very wide sound stage and separation between the instruments; piano complete left, horns and bass dead center, drums completely right.
drummer Tony Williams sometimes does not play at all and on those moments all one should hear on the right channel of the piano is a faint echo.
(http://www.computeraudiophile.com/attachments/f8-general-forum/18174d1430009312-music-testing-audio-equipment-b000002865.01._aa240_sclzzzzzzz_.jpg)(http://www.jazzcenter.nl/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/uberjam-deux.jpg)

John Scofiel's cover of the old Main Ingredient hit has a complete left right separation. The organ is audible on the left channel only and the rhythm guitar is on the right. The separation is so extreme that if you were to disconnect the right channel you would not hear any rhythm guitar at all, just like on the early Beatles stereo LP's
All Music
;
JazzTimes;

Imaging

11. Trevor Pinnock; Mahler symphony no. 4
this delicate chamber orchestra arrangement of the great Mahler Symphony is a real beauty.
the all music review said
;http://www.linnrecords.com/recording-mahler-symphonie-no-4.aspx (http://www.linnrecords.com/recording-mahler-symphonie-no-4.aspx)
(http://media.mdt.co.uk/media/catalog/product/cache/1/small_image/140x140/9df78eab33525d08d6e5fb8d27136e95/C/K/CKD442.jpg)
12. Iona Brown and the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra;''the Spring'' from Grieg two Elegiac Melodies.
the Grammaphone review puts it well
;(http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/31D3G0WXHTL.jpg)
http://www.naimlabel.com/ (http://www.naimlabel.com/)

13. Batik; '' The Bird'' from the Old Man and the Sea
just about perfect imaging, left to right evenly laid out for your eyes and ears to see, piano, bass, drums, guitar and again a one room recording. Unbelievable why so few companies do this when it can yield so very satisfactory results.

http://www.soundliaison.com/ (http://www.soundliaison.com/)
(http://www.computeraudiophile.com/attachments/f8-general-forum/18171d1420152829t-music-testing-audio-equipment-batikhoes300shad.png)
Audio Stream;
John Scofield;'' Never Turn Back'' from Piety Street
the drum intro has a small imperfection, there is a soft ringing sound on the left channel probably coused by a sympathic resonance in the drum set or in the room.
The moment the organ enters it kind of cover up the problem, although if you really listen for it you can hear it through out the track. Wonderful old fashioned sound stage.
All Music;

(http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/thumb/1/13/John_Scofield_Pieyt_Street.jpg/220px-John_Scofield_Pieyt_Street.jpg)



This post is a duplicate from another forum where it was much appreciated.
 But I had hoped for more alternatives to the music that I and my friend are suggesting, maybe you dear reader would be so kind to post your favorites.

Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: PA on 6 Jan 2017, 02:29 pm
The Sound Liaison albums from that list is on sale at the moment.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Graywulf on 8 Jan 2017, 02:09 pm
for female vocals. {sibilance}
 tracks from Annie Lennox 'Medusa' album, including no more I love you's.
 Sinead  O'connor nothing compares and, fire on babylon.
Patricia Barber.. too rich for my blood.

overall sonic performance...
 Curved air track from Lovechild, Paris by night. It's not a 'great track to listen to' but it has a very repetitive music line that lets you really listen to what's going on.... a couple of minutes {or so} of high piano notes which are REALLY ear bending if the speakers/system are overbright or sibilant.  then goes into a similar repetition series with much lower notes which scale down to VERY low hertz, and combine more than one instrument to achieve this... Poor systems/speakers can really confuse the instrument separation.
 for separation soundstage etc depending on mood either
ELP Tarkus or Pictures at an Exhibition, albums.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: decal on 8 Jan 2017, 02:14 pm
I agree with the concept of using something you are very familiar with.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: needporsche on 12 Feb 2017, 03:19 am
I've always brought this along with me when auditioning. 

(http://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=157734)
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: SteveFord on 12 Feb 2017, 01:11 pm
Frank Zappa - Apostrophe'

It has a little bit of everything on it and I know it note for note.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Russell Dawkins on 13 Feb 2017, 02:46 am
I like the upright bass sound here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xql3l9UmEqw&feature=youtu.be

I like the general bass sound here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D4uBAHMdl5I

and here, and the mix, too:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qgfi6pbW-BQ

I like the kick sound on this and the general balance (plus it's killer blues):
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-xeszZfu8C0
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Phil A on 13 Feb 2017, 03:37 am
This is one of my favorite tracks - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MIvx4Da6Mm0
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: JLM on 13 Feb 2017, 11:35 am
Id say, listen to what you like at home. Hell if you like metal, then play that.   :D

Use a wide variety of the genres you listen to, selections that seem well recorded and that you are familiar with.  I also bring a "guilty pleasure" album (music I like but is poorly recorded) because I don't want the speaker to make a portion of my library unlistenable.  And take notes (forces to really concentrate and helps you to recall each speaker afterwards).

It's just as important to know what to listen for.  To help sort them out I'd start with your toughest criteria first.  Everyone has their priorities, but for me #1 is musicality (does it sound like real live unamplified music - the majority don't).  After that I listen for:

1.)  Coherence (many speakers sound like an assortment of separate drivers that don't integrate into a single sound source, this is critical if you listen closer than 10 feet);
2.)  Imaging/soundstage (specific images with large soundstage, this is the entry point to high-end sound);
3.)  Midrange (the heart of music - voice);
4.)  Tight/deep bass (very room dependent);
5.)  Dynamics (macro and micro);
6.)  Treble (clear but not fatiguing);
7.)  Are they placement fussy (you and/or the speakers, you may be changing placement/rooms before replacing speakers).

After 40 years at this my advice is to go with a pair of monitors with 5 - 7 inch mid/woofer and add subwoofer(s) as needed.  By their nature monitors are coherent, image well, are placement friendly, and are easier to resell.  Bass is best generated from near corners (at opposite ends of the room).  Wood veneering represents half of the cost of speakers, so invest in smaller amounts in monitors and save money on the subs that are less in sight.

Take care.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Douglas Schmidt on 4 Jun 2017, 01:48 pm
Hi,
I'm relatively new to the circle.  I'm a recovering audiophile.  I ran down that rabbit hole years ago and decided it was bottomless. However, I still enjoy listening to music an a decent system.  So bear with me.

The albums I used to demo my system and I also enjoy are"

Don Juan’s Reckless Daughter  by Joni Joni Mitchell. It has her voice plus Jaco Pastorius detuned his bass and hits an insane bass note.
"I Got the Music in Me" by Thelma Houston and Pressure Cooker.  Again for female voice.
"Diamonds and Rust" by Joan Baez particularly Medley: I Dream Of Jeannie/Danny Boy.
"Blood, Sweat and Tears"

Of course if you want to blow out your woofers, there is always Telarc's "1812 Overture"
Doug
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Wind Chaser on 4 Jun 2017, 02:20 pm
Id say, listen to what you like at home. Hell if you like metal, then play that.   :D

This is absolutely correct. Anything else is a waste of time and could lead to disappointment. The music you like is the music you listen to. Nothing else matters.

And while we are on the subject of testing speakers, do it in your own home with your own gear. Any other place or gear is a waste of time.

Your music, your room, your gear. Why? Because that is your point of reference. Outside of that you are on unfamiliar ground with no point of reference. Why roll the dice? That ain't no way to buy speakers.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: FullRangeMan on 4 Jun 2017, 02:57 pm
+1 on 1812 and Tocatta BWV565.
Also lots of familiar repertoire of bad recorded music on CD, its very importat you know how your speakers will sound in your room w/bad recorded music.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: simoon on 5 Jun 2017, 06:07 pm

No rock or processed music for me thanks.

I completely agree with this. Even though I listen to quite a bit of rock (prog rock of various genres), I don't use it to test speakers initially. I use music from the other genres I listen to, 20th century and contemporary classical and jazz, to judge audio equipment.

With mainstream rock, there is no way to judge whether the speaker under test is in any way accurate. There is so much studio manipulation that goes on after the musicians record, there is no baseline to judge if what you are hearing it accurate. You don't know how the electric guitar, bass, drum kit, etc sounded when the musician played tem. Delay, EQ, compression, panning, reverb, overdubs, etc, etc all serve to obscure what the instruments and vocals actually sound like.

With classical and acoustic jazz, you are hearing what instruments actually sound like. There is a real world examples of violins, pianos, upright bass, drums, etc, that can be heard live, to compare how the speakers are able to reproduce them.

Even before I was not a fan of classical, I would still use classical recordings to evaluate speakers, because I know what non-amplified, acoustic instruments sound like player live.

Once I have a baseline if the speakers are reasonable accurate on classical and jazz,  then I can see how they will sound on the genres of rock I listen to.

Title: 2xHD Audiophile Set-up and Test Albums
Post by: PeteG on 3 May 2018, 05:07 pm
2xHD Audiophile Speaker set-up and Audiophile Hi-Res System Test

Just a shoutout to these outstanding and well put together test albums. I have most set-up/test CD's but these two I really enjoy more than others, if you get a chance to pick them up you won't be disappointed. Highly recommended. They can be downloaded in DSD or PCM and make sure you download the PDF booklet.


(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=179657)

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=179658)

https://dsd-files.s3.amazonaws.com/2xHD/2XHDFT1095/2XHDFT1095/2XHDFT1095.pdf (https://dsd-files.s3.amazonaws.com/2xHD/2XHDFT1095/2XHDFT1095/2XHDFT1095.pdf)
https://dsd-files.s3.amazonaws.com/2xHD/2XHDFT1042/2XHDFT1042/2XHDFT1042.pdf (https://dsd-files.s3.amazonaws.com/2xHD/2XHDFT1042/2XHDFT1042/2XHDFT1042.pdf)
Title: Re: 2xHD Audiophile Set-up and Test Albums
Post by: Mag on 21 May 2018, 07:26 pm
I have Clean Mates cd laser/lens cleaner cd disc that also has calibrating features for use with cd,cd-r,cd-rw,cd-rom,dvd and video game disc players.

Stereo Imaging & Channel ID Check
Polarity Check
Sweep Test
Pro logic Imaging & channel ID check
System Balance Check
Rattle Test
System Purity

(https://www.audiocircle.com/image.php?id=180323)
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Hoiman on 1 Jun 2018, 08:31 pm
To test lthe ow frequencies, London Grammer "Hey now", after 1.15 min. it goes really low.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Elizabeth on 1 Jun 2018, 08:35 pm
Best is recordings you really really know well.
Then, if you hear something NEW!!
You will be surprised and pleasantly so.
If a speaker can give you new insight into a recording you already know well. Then you KNOW it is a good speaker.
Same thing listening to other electronics.
As others mentioned, a good female vocalist is one to use.
Stringed instruments like a quartet.
Something very dynamic.
Piano.
But above all, they have to be well known to you.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Russell Dawkins on 1 Jun 2018, 10:17 pm
I used to use a track by Leontyne Price to test midrange dynamic capabilty and smoothness of response. Most speakers will break up completely at some point in her fortissimo glissandi. I have it on vinyl (an RCA Red Seal) and can't find it online, but here are a few I found that might perform the same function:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qOWCa1HkfBM&index=5&list=RDmiq4WNIByd8
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wFNJez611R0&list=RDmiq4WNIByd8&index=2

She has a lot of power in her voice, and these recordings are clean; they should not sound strained at any point.

I also absolutely love her voice, as did she (and with justification!)
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Wind Chaser on 1 Jun 2018, 10:55 pm
Best is recordings you really really know well.

What she said!  :thumb:
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: johnto on 3 Jun 2018, 08:52 pm
Jazz Variants by the O-Zone Percussion Group, lots of different percussive instruments on all frequency ranges and definitely some sonic boom.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: decal on 4 Jun 2018, 03:49 pm
What she said!  :thumb:

Ditto  :thumb: :thumb: :thumb:
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: bodhiboy on 18 Jan 2020, 03:26 pm
Run Like Hell from Pink Floyd's Pulse recording.  Most cone excursion I've ever seen on the big Matrix 801 woofers.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: alvinnir on 27 Feb 2020, 03:25 pm
i tend to have a series of "test tracks" that I burn onto a cd that I can take with me. All of it is music I love and know well and each track has a focus.

One may be solo piano, one may be voice, one may be some dynamic jazz fusion. That way I can see how any speaker deals with each of the criteria I value but within the context of music I know well. I also include music that I like that is not too well recorded because I don't want to own a speaker that is overly revealing of poor recordings. Otherwise all you can listen too is "audiophile" pressings which is rather limiting.

Those recordings are fun to impress, they make any system sound as good as possible, but that's not what I want to listen to when at home, the lights are low, and I have a fine glass of wine in my hand.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Alpentalic on 15 Sep 2020, 09:59 pm
I tend to like to bring a variety of things including female vocals, male vocals, reggae, jazz, orchestra.  I feel like with these areas covered I can make a pretty good assessment.  I always bring what I consider well recorded music.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Plato’s Mojo on 16 Sep 2020, 07:00 am
Right now I’m using Gallo Strada 2s and a pair of subs. For the speakers, I like to use Enya “Watermark”. I like the dynamics of the album and it covers the mids and highs I look for when making placement adjustments. For sub placement, I like the album “The Ways We Separate” by Beacon. It is electronica with a heavy base beat throughout the songs. Keeps me from having to go back over and over to reset a song. The album also has some nice mids to high melodic passages where I can check the subs’ integration with the Stradas. Always cool to see what others are doing.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Theronbo on 22 Sep 2020, 05:10 pm
1. Listen to music you know well... then you can really hear the differences.

2. YouTube has a bunch of Audifile test playlist that are fun, full variety of music recorded lossy or 24bit 96Hz.

3. This seeming pretentious album:
https://music.apple.com/us/album/the-ultimate-demonstration-disc/261629584

It seems humorous at first, except that going through it I found it was useful...
Plus, I really enjoy the music.

Oh, I’m not an audiophile...

I just built some X-Static’s I wanted to test.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Russell Dawkins on 22 Sep 2020, 05:38 pm
1. Listen to music you know well... then you can really hear the differences.

2. YouTube has a bunch of Audifile test playlist that are fun, full variety of music recorded lossy or 24bit 96Hz.

3. This seeming pretentious album:
https://music.apple.com/us/album/the-ultimate-demonstration-disc/261629584

It seems humorous at first, except that going through it I found it was useful...
Plus, I really enjoy the music.

Oh, I’m not an audiophile...

I just built some X-Static’s I wanted to test.
Thanks for the link. I used to own a Chesky test disc that had an amazing "up and over" track to test speakers and positioning. If everything was good, you would hear a scratchy 'white noise'-type sound start in the left speaker and seemingly go up from there and over in an arc to the right side, then down into the right speaker.
Apart from careful speaker positioning enabling good phantom image creation it seemed to require flat response through the midrange because duplicating the typical ears' pinnae's influence on tonality with vertical movements of sound sources.

I can't find the disc now, either in actual reality or online.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: rollo on 22 Sep 2020, 08:19 pm
  Familiar piano music or any other acoustic instrument.


charles
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: PA on 20 Apr 2021, 05:24 pm
For low end this Robert Johnson reinterpretation is excellent as it starts off with 27.5hz bowed double bass tone;
Quote
By framing each of Robert Johnson’s songs with small instrumental miniatures, Carmen Gomes Inc. have created an album that sounds like an imaginary road movie. Listening one perceives Robert walking late at night, en route in the Mississippi Delta, reflecting back on his life.
The low A, 27.5 Hz, from the bowed down tuned double bass representing the Mississippi night, the drums creating the sounds surrounding the night and the guitar being Robert’s mind.

(https://www.soundliaison.com/images/CarmenUJTD300shadowDXD.jpg)
Audiophile download at https://www.soundliaison.com/ (https://www.soundliaison.com/)
Redbook CD at https://carmengomes.bandcamp.com/ (https://carmengomes.bandcamp.com/)

Quote
...."This is some of the best sounding drum sound I have ever heard on a recording. Very dynamic and not reserved. The sound of the double bass is full, rich and powerful where needed but with no hint of bloat. And the guitar.....It is clear and reverberant. Naturally, not with added reverb. Of course, the vocals are captured beautifully. Carmen is right there in front of you. This recording doesn’t take you to the recording studio. Even better, it brings the recording studio to your listening room. Very few studio recordings do this. The drums to the left, Carmen in the middle in front of the instruments and the bass just to the right of her and the guitar to the right side of the soundstage. The sound is totally three dimensional. You almost feel like you can reach out and touch everyone. The sound is totally open with natural decay and depth. It is stunning. It really is. No hyperbole."....






Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: samwatkins on 20 Apr 2021, 09:23 pm
I'm partial to the SRV version of Little Wing. Lots of detail and dynamics, some stereo panning and a few quiet artifacts in the recording to listen for.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: akubacki on 12 Jun 2021, 03:12 pm
Paul McGowain from PS-Audio, list his picks for auditioning equipment. Google Paul's Picks on Tidal and Quobuz.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Tyson on 12 Jun 2021, 05:54 pm
If you want to hear how a speaker does with large orchestral forces and very large vocal forces, check out this latest Mahler 8:

(https://www.udiscovermusic.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/05/Dudamel__Mahler8_cover.jpg)
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: Theronbo on 12 Jun 2021, 09:17 pm
https://music.apple.com/us/album/the-ultimate-demonstration-disc/261629584

Chesky Ultimate Demonstration album is available on Apple Music.

Doesn’t display the ‘lossless’ logo though.
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: WGH on 12 Jun 2021, 09:34 pm
Ani DiFranco - Revolutionary Love

(https://is4-ssl.mzstatic.com/image/thumb/Music114/v4/d0/d2/df/d0d2df32-f897-2dd4-9884-b8ffb0f854bd/748731709907.jpg/486x486bb.png)

I have always liked Ani's music, Revolutionary Love is especially nice. The album flows along with no jarring songs to interrupt the mood during it's 56 minutes. Ani has always been political so you can listen to the music or the lyrics and get pleasure from both.

“It’s about carrying the energy of love and compassion into the center of our social movements and making it the driving force,” DiFranco said of the new album. “It’s about finding it within ourselves to stay curious about our opponents instead of shutting down.”

Revolutionary Love will make love to your speakers too. The album sounds very analog with a natural clarity, it has very deep bass and drums that is balanced out with an organic midrange and treble. The first track has a distant triangle in the left speaker throughout the entire song, it should be clear and faint. The triangle also shows up in other tracks too. Listening via my old Logitech THX computer desktop stereo to the the first track "Revolutionary Love" (Official Audio) on YouTube the triangle is non-existent. The album is a good test of your stereo's resolution although not necessarily via YouTube.

Revolutionary Love is receiving 5 star reviews everywhere
https://tinyurl.com/28te8pts
Title: Re: Music to test speakers
Post by: JohnInToronto on 30 Sep 2021, 12:23 pm
Here are my test tracks:

Boz Scaggs
- "Thanks to you" from the Dig album
- Amazing dynamic range and a good clean deep bass test

Diana Krall
- "Peel me a grape" from Love Scenes
- Listen for the Popping cork. It should be crisp and in the room with you. Diana always has great quality recordings. A favourite reference track.

Fiest
- The remix of Gatekeep (Let it Die) from Café Méliès, vol. 3
- Hand claps aren't always easy to reproduce and and combined with a strong bass line and what sounds like a triangle there's lot's going. Everything should be clearly distinct.

Ennio Morricone
- "Ava Maria Guarani" from The Mission soundtrack
- An escalating choral presentation that can sound really good or really bad depending on the system

Jean-Claude Kerinec
- "Samba' from Mamba Percussions vol. 1
- See if the speaker's drivers can keep up!