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Re: [ARSCLIST] Stereo records.
phillip holmes <insuranceman@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
>Many mastering engineers would sum the low bass to mono. The good ones also
>have an oscilloscope to look out for hot out of phase signals.
I'd like to correct this because I see it turning into a common misconception about how vinyl records were mastered.
I have attended numerous mastering sessions with the handful of engineers who accounted for 90% of the titles on the Billboard charts between 1970 and 1990. I can't remember a single instance that this technique was employed. Yes, Neumann mastering consoles had a switch that sums the low-end at several frequencies however this doesn't mean that people used it very often. Also stock Neumann mastering consoles didn't have a very good reputation for sound quality so in many cases all of the active circuitry had been replaced. Finally, virtually everybody mixing and mastering major label releases had a scope running by 1970 and most of us still use one every day.
The reason we made "hot" 45s in the '60s was exactly the same reason we are seeing "hot" CDs today.
The biggest challenge to every record company has always been getting records into the stores and then getting people into those stores to buy them. This almost always entails a series of meetings where the first 15 to thirty seconds of a large stack of new releases gets played and immediately added to the "keepers" or tossed in the wastebasket. Levels that are "too low" relative to the competition put your record at a huge disadvantage in this process.
Bob Olhsson Audio Mastery, Nashville TN
Mastering, Audio for Picture, Mix Evaluation and Quality Control
Over 40 years making people sound better than they ever imagined!