After buying both volumes and a couple of listens, this is the email I sent in reply to the recording’s announcement:
I purchased the 88.2k 24 bit versions of the Ana Vidović album and have to say that I’m disappointed. The playing is clear, as one would expect, but the volume level is soft and the recording has little sense of the presence one would expect with a live concert recording. Just to be sure, I went through my collection of guitar players – all flac files, a few hi-res – from Julian Bream to Wes Montgomery, and this recording overall doesn’t stand up with the better of them (nor with your Don Grusin recording). The basics of my system are listed below. [see follow up listen below]
- Wyred Power Conditioner & PS Audio P15 Regenerator
- Oppo 203 digital w/ beefed up power supply and LPS
- VAC Master Preamp
- LampizatOr Golden Gate 3 dac
- ATC SCM50 active floorstanders & JL Audio e-110 subs
- WyWires Diamond IC’s and power cords + PAD Neptune spdif cable
I purchased a DSD256 download of the 2nd Volume, and the sound quality of the recording is quite nice.
While I cannot listen to hour after hour of a solo guitar, the volume level seems normal to me, and the guitar sounds very real.
I wouldn’t read too much into the “like”. If they had purchased and agreed they would have chimed in. Hopefully someone like @jamesh can help investigate/resolve the issue. Additional information like if other PS Audio wav files sound ok in your system, or if different file format versions of the Ana Vidovic would sound ok with your system.
I just had another listen and want to update what I hear (and don’t). I received another WyWires Diamond power cord today, which allowed me to swap that one in for the one going from the wall to WyWred conditioner, and run the latter to one of subs that was using a WW Platinum. Thus a bit heftier sound.
On this listen, using the NIOSH dB app on an iPad Mini 5 from my listening position, about 8’ out, the volume of Ana Vidović’s is well softer than most of my albums, but in the ballpark of Octave’s The Art of HiFi: Bass, although a bit softer than the Don Grusin recording. But then a guitar is not a piano. However, the audience clapping is much louder – jacked up in the miking or engineering process?
I do not hear any hall except when the audience claps (is it dead?). It’s not even apparent that Ana Vidović is on a stage. Take out the audience clapping and the recording could pass for a very close-miked small studio recording. Switching to her Naxos Moreno Torroba album (Vol. 1, flac), one clearly senses the hall, in this case a church, as an integral part of the performance, along with plenty of air around her playing.
Thanks for your comments and for listening. Ana is an amazing player.
We purposefully close miked her performance and mixed it that way. The crowd was very quiet (and no the clapping isn’t jacked up, it’s actually jacked down a bit) until the applause.
I used a stereo Telefunken microphone for hall ambiance and the crowd, but had to be a bit conservative with how much hall because they had her miked on the PA system so the audience could hear her performance.
I wish we could have had a church or something other than Hampden Hall (which is dead) but that’s what we had.
Great description of what you had to work with and the recording process.
Even when recording symphony orchestra I find the applause surprisingly loud.
Glad I raised this. Potential customers should have a realistic picture of what they’re getting before putting down $$. My comments of course are only about the recording, not to diminish Ana Vidovic’s excellent playing.
And keep in mind we have a few users who throw shade with nearly every opportunity.
Speaking of Ana Vidovic, I listened to “Preludio saudade” and “Andante religioso” from Volume 2 last night that sounded just wonderful. I could easily hear each string on Ana’s guitar while enjoying the beautiful music.