re-masters

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fab eberhard ®

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Post 10-Sep-2013 13:17

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curious as to what people are thinking about remastering shows. several here on smithtorrents have worked ludicrously long hours to truly elevate the experience of some gigs. others... well, audio is not for everyone. i throw it out for discussion due to recently seeing somewhere (of course i do not remember) that posting remasters was a no no to the site without prior approval. i know we are on the search for the best possible quality but when is enough enough? whats not enough? who uses what? i could go on here but am hoping that others have something to say on the subject. i know many of these details pop up in the specific torrent data but i haven't seen a discussion on the subject. if i missed one somewhere would someone direct me to it. otherwise, what do you think? cheers all!
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DavidA

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Post 10-Sep-2013 13:25 (after 8 minutes)

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I don't have an issue with re-masters. Some are better than others.
Personally I download and keep all of them, then listen to the version that sounds best to my ears. If a re-master was universally lambasted then I might pull it down. In a way I have more of an issue with the poorer quality versions being re-seeded. To that end you might have noticed that I retired a few older bootlegs.
Kushvin presented a new decision when he did his fan remix of Kill Uncle. I put it in the Misc section so that it was clear that it was a fan derivative.
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fab eberhard ®

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Post 10-Sep-2013 13:57 (after 31 minute)

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thanks david for reminding me of the kill uncle remix. that is a great example of a choice that some would embrace and others would shun as heresy. and to that i would say that opens up a whole other can of... the fan. seems the deeper you dive the more complex it may become.
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DavidA

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Post 10-Sep-2013 14:26 (after 29 minutes)

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On this site at least, I'd like fan-made items to end up in the Miscellaneous section. The Kill Uncle remix was clear cut, but I remember savbomb adding reverb to the end of a Peel session to help it fade correctly and wasn't sure what to make of that. On the one hand, it's just tidying up something that's broken. On the other hand, it's adding to the work. Besides, there have been Warner mixes that haven't have much to do with The Smiths.
I make a point of keeping notes with the recording. That helps.
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savbomb

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Post 11-Sep-2013 11:34 (after 21 hour)

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As a remasterer, what I'd say is the bottom line is that they're free, you don't have to download them and, if you do, you don't have to keep them. Personally, I think that applies to just about anything on the site. If someone did a really bad homemade dub reggae remix of Hatful of Hollow then it's not really hurting anyone if they seed it, so long as they provide the information so no-one misunderstands what it is.
I guess different people are interested in slightly different things from the site. I'm interested in the best quality recordings. If a recording can be improved then it should be. So, I have done things like reverb, noise reduction, mixing different sources, splicing-in audio and so on. Only if I think its justified, though, not just for the hell of it. So, the reverb I used on the end of a couple of the BBC sessions might be viewed as an impurity, but the alternatives are an early-fade out, stop abruptly in the middle of the last note or have someone talking over the end. To me, its clear which is best, but anyone who would prefer one of the other options is also catered for on the site.
It might be good if the site had some way of providing information about what different versions of a recording there are and how they differ, so that if someone wanted, say, the Oxford Apollo concert, they could see what the options are and pick one.
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DavidA

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Post 11-Sep-2013 12:40 (after 1 hour 5 minutes)

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Savbomb, to be clear, I love the remasters you've done here. It's a lot of work but often gets great results.
Yes, I should perhaps have something that tells people what the options are. Maybe something at the top of the post itself that says.
Speed corrected version here.
FM radio edit here.
Particularly for common things like Troy Tate, Kilburn, Oxford, BBC sessions.
I just need to find the energy to do it. Won't be soon!
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savbomb

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Post 12-Sep-2013 20:42 (after 1 day 8 hours)

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Don't worry, I wasn't taking offence. What do you mean "often", though. :shock:
Yes, it can be easier to have ideas than to actually run the site, I guess.
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DavidA

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Post 12-Sep-2013 21:40 (after 58 minutes)

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Often great results, sometimes amazing results, never bad results. How's that?
I'll give someone admin rights if they want to do the 'alternative version' link idea I described above.
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steve

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Post 13-Sep-2013 08:03 (after 10 hours)

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Everything is limited by the quality of the original source.
I don't have the time or the skills to remaster properly. But I have lots of master tapes, a good cassette deck and a very good A to D converter.
I'm happy to do 96/24 flat transfers of anything as a source for a remaster.
I don't believe 96/24 is strictly necessary for the final product, but the extra headroom can be very useful if you're adjusting the audio.
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tmtomh

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Post 13-Sep-2013 21:05 (after 13 hours)

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I (like many others I'm guessing) am active on other band-oriented web forums/trackers, and this same issue comes up there as well.
Building on what others have said here, I think everyone agrees on three basic issues:
(1) It's essential for the tracker always to have a clean pool of the purest sources (lowest-gen, best transfer, most accurate speed available). (2) Remasters can be more enjoyable or easier to listen to, and so they are an essential resource here too. (3) Every version must be labeled/described clearly and in multiple places (thread titles, torrent file names, torrent info text files), to avoid confusion.
Given this broad agreement, there seems to be one remaining question: How should remasters be posted and made available here?
For availability, they can be up on the tracker. Or (as is the case with some other sites) they can be banned from the tracker, and instead uploaded by members to online file lockers or other torrent sites. They can then start new threads that contain the download links.
For posting, the remasters can be posted as they are now, under the relevant artist (Smiths, Morrissey, or Marr), or else in separate sub-forums (should the mods desire to create them).
While I'm new here, and I defer 100% to the mods and the more experienced members, I will make one observation: the line between "original" and "remaster" is very fuzzy when it comes to videos. Any decent video digitization (especially from analog) includes color correction and audio adjustments. Furthermore, a "video remaster" often is just an improvement on the video quality. It's not quite the same as adding reverb or other effects to audio.
So for that reason, given how much of a role videos play here, it might make the most sense to just leave everything on the tracker, keep postings about "originals" and "remasters" in the same forum areas, and just make sure everything is labeled really clearly.
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savbomb

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Post 14-Sep-2013 20:23 (after 23 hours)

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Would this be the sort of thing?
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fab eberhard ®

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Post 15-Sep-2013 12:03 (after 15 hours)

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looks good sav... my impression of the comments so far is that there is no hesitation to consider what is essentially the audio version of fan fiction as a source for legit listening pleasure. something to examine next to the "original". interesting... i would never have imagined that the world would changed as it has. as a practicing musician for over thirty years for someone to randomly acquire any recorded version of material i produced in any form and re-realize it seems thoroughly criminal. please... a moment. now i certainly have come to see things differently. the manner in which an audiences relationship to an event, an artist, their work, etc. has morphed radically - (you just don't read the book/see the movie anymore) changes i am glad to say i happily embrace. i don't think i'm really trying to win a point as much as say - i ponder these kinds of things all the time and this has always felt like a safe community to think out loud in. i love it. you people have my brain on fire...
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DavidA

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Post 15-Sep-2013 15:57 (after 3 hours)

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The vast majority of the re-masterings here are an effort to make the best of a particular recording. Rarely does it anything new to the work. If it does, then I think it goes in the misc section.
Savbomb, yes, that's exactly what I was thinking. Did you break your torrent in the process though?
Try using this to create a numbered list:
[code:1][list=1]
[*]one
[*]two
[*]three
[/list][/code:1]
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