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Thread: Live performance v HiFi

  1. #11
    Join Date: Jan 2009

    Location: Sheffield - UK

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    I'm Mark.

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    The Greystones is not far from where I live.

    100% Analogue

  2. #12
    Join Date: May 2016

    Location: Notts

    Posts: 2,204
    I'm Geoff.

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    Quote Originally Posted by YNWaN View Post
    The Greystones is not far from where I live.
    It's a good venue that seems to attract many good performers.

  3. #13
    Join Date: Aug 2009

    Location: Staffordshire, England

    Posts: 25,108
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Gaz View Post
    This was inspired by various other threads about what people want from their system, something that is often mentioned is the system sounding like a live performance.

    I've been thinking about this and with one exception (Brit Floyd) if my system sounded like most of the gigs I've been to I'd bin it and buy a Bose Wave thingy.

    With the obvious exception of sheer volume most live gigs sound bloody awful, one that springs to mind for me was Alice Cooper at Bournmouth a few years ago, the sound was so bad that I genuinely struggled to tell what song was being performed it was simply sheer noise.

    People also rhapsodise about soundstage and being able to hear where individual instruments are, again at a live gig your eyes tell you where the performers are not your ears, although there are usually two speaker arrays (plus delay towers) the audience are unlikely to get any stereo imaging depending on where they're sitting/standing.

    So is the "live performance" analogy really a good one
    Except for pub gigs I must have been lucky because most of them I've been to the sound was pretty good. I think the main difference is volume and dynamics. At a Clapton gig back in '86 my mate turned to me as they kicked off the first tune and shouted 'I don't think I can take it if it is going to be this loud.' It was ludicrous, my ears were ringing for 3 days afterwards. It was so loud it was actually disorientating but it was a clean sound.

    If you could get that concert on CD what equipment would I need to get even close to replicating that level of clean volume? Of course the dynamics and sound pressure level could be done but you would need a big room and very big speakers and very powerful amps - kilowatts. And no neighbours nearby. Some people do run such systems domestically.

    But I think when people say they want a 'live' sound they don't mean loudness and dynamics. I think they mean that they want a bit of 'bite' to the sound. I'm talking rock or pop music here, classical or any totally acoustic music is another ballgame. I think we would all agree that the sound of a live rock band will have that bite.


    But what about when the band go in the studio an record and album? Do they aim to replicate their live sound? Mostly, no. And ironically when they do the sound quality of the album tends to get criticised for being poor - 'Definitely Maybe' by Oasis being a classic example. Their first attempt was a typical polished studio effort which they rejected because they sounded like 'fucking Dire Straits'.

    So they started again and attempted to get more of their live sound onto the record. Result: roundly slagged off by audiophiles for being a shit recording. These same audiophiles who are chasing a 'live sound'.


    So they want a live sound but they don't want the recording to deliver that. They want the recording perfectly clean with bell-like clarity. Then they use underpowered amplifiers that will be clipping half the time with a load of harmonic distortion and speakers that have no low bass (so they sound fast) and a big hump in the midrange so they have 'presence'.


    Any less than perfect recording will then sound unlistenable but really clean recordings like Dire Straits, Blue Nile etc will sound 'live' and still be listenable Cue many years of complaining about poor recording quality, bad production, cloth eared engineers and so on. And having the equipment dictate your music choices.


    Fact is most recordings are not of live performances and are not recorded or produced to sound like live performances. They are recorded and produced to sound good when you play them back on your hi-fi. That's what the supposedly cloth-eared engineers are aiming for. And 99.99% of the time they achieve it. So why have a system that tries to turn them into something they are not supposed to be?
    Martin



    Current Lash Up:

    Technics SLP1200 CD Player * Nelson Pass DCB1 Pre amp / Krell KSA50S Power amp * JM Lab Electra 926 loudspeakers *


    'You fool! To think that your ape-brain could contain the full knowledge of the Krell!'

  4. #14
    Join Date: Apr 2008

    Location: Warrington

    Posts: 3,325
    I'm Neil.

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    Quote Originally Posted by YNWaN View Post
    The most you can ever hope to achieve is authenticity/accuracy to the recording. If the recording is capable of capturing a ‘live’ recording then there is a chance that it can be played back but, if not, then the Hi-Fi can’t magically create that which isn’t there in the first place.
    Yes indeed. One of my favourites in this regard is Dead Can Dance’s “Toward The Within”, where you can really hear the hall venue ambience too. Love a good live album.
    Mana Acoustics Racks / Bright Star IsoNodes Decoupling >> Allo DigiOne Player >> Pedja Rogic's Audial Model S DAC + Pioneer PL-71 turntable / Vista Audio phono-1 mk II / Denon PCL-5 headshell / Reson Reca >> LFD DLS >> LFD PA2M (SE) >> Royd RR3s.

  5. #15
    Join Date: Jan 2019

    Location: Kent UK

    Posts: 101
    I'm Martin.

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    I really enjoy listening to live recordings on my system. You get a sense of the venue and its acoustics and the audience reaction to the performance. I think it does very much depend on the genre of music though, jazz, folk, classical and acoustic stuff working particularly well.

    Live recordings i particularly enjoy are; Katie Melua live in Berlin, Nils Lofgren acoustic live, Alice in chains live at the majestic theatre and Diana Krall live in Paris.

    Lots of good stuff on you tube too one of my favourites is a US radio station called KEXP who have a couple of studios that they film live performances in, they get a real eclectic mix of acts in, they also shoot some Euro acts in Iceland.


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  6. #16
    Join Date: Apr 2008

    Location: Warrington

    Posts: 3,325
    I'm Neil.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Discopants View Post
    I really enjoy listening to live recordings on my system. You get a sense of the venue and its acoustics and the audience reaction to the performance. I think it does very much depend on the genre of music though, jazz, folk, classical and acoustic stuff working particularly well.

    Live recordings i particularly enjoy are; Katie Melua live in Berlin, Nils Lofgren acoustic live, Alice in chains live at the majestic theatre and Diana Krall live in Paris.

    Lots of good stuff on you tube too one of my favourites is a US radio station called KEXP who have a couple of studios that they film live performances in, they get a real eclectic mix of acts in, they also shoot some Euro acts in Iceland.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    I think you’d like The Cure - Live In Paris.
    Mana Acoustics Racks / Bright Star IsoNodes Decoupling >> Allo DigiOne Player >> Pedja Rogic's Audial Model S DAC + Pioneer PL-71 turntable / Vista Audio phono-1 mk II / Denon PCL-5 headshell / Reson Reca >> LFD DLS >> LFD PA2M (SE) >> Royd RR3s.

  7. #17
    Join Date: Apr 2012

    Location: Near Oxford

    Posts: 863
    I'm Bill.

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    I've attended over a thousand gigs during the last 40 years and for me this is by far the best musical experience possible.
    I'd have a band playing in my lounge every night of the week if I could
    Allo Boss Player / NJC Audio Reference Headphone Amp / Sennheiser HD600

  8. #18
    Join Date: Jan 2019

    Location: Kent UK

    Posts: 101
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Yomanze View Post
    I think you’d like The Cure - Live In Paris.

    I used to love their stuff when i was a moody teenager in the 80s so probably would get a nostalgia kick out of it.


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  9. #19
    Join Date: Jan 2019

    Location: Kent UK

    Posts: 101
    I'm Martin.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bourneendboy View Post
    I've attended over a thousand gigs during the last 40 years and for me this is by far the best musical experience possible.
    I'd have a band playing in my lounge every night of the week if I could
    Ive done a load of festivals in the past but not many straight up gigs other than the odd local band down the pub. I’m planning to get out and listen to a lot more live music now though. Trouble is persuading my mates to come along as my tastes are a bit weird to most of them these days. I have managed to persuade them all to go to Union chapel in November for an annual meet up in London event we usually have to see the Delines though.


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  10. #20
    Join Date: Apr 2012

    Location: Near Oxford

    Posts: 863
    I'm Bill.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Discopants View Post
    Ive done a load of festivals in the past but not many straight up gigs other than the odd local band down the pub. I’m planning to get out and listen to a lot more live music now though. Trouble is persuading my mates to come along as my tastes are a bit weird to most of them these days. I have managed to persuade them all to go to Union chapel in November for an annual meet up in London event we usually have to see the Delines though.


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
    Union Chapel - amazing venue!

    If you rely on mates going with you, you will end up missing out - go on your own. I've had to do this many times as none of my mates like my music or don't like the live experience.
    Allo Boss Player / NJC Audio Reference Headphone Amp / Sennheiser HD600

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